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Sheila Heti with Jennifer Reeder: The Universe is Draftable

May 14, 2022 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm Stagg Court

The Chicago Athletic Association hotel is a host venue for two Chicago Humanities Festival programs this season.

What do you do when you haven’t read a book that speaks to the specifics of how you’re feeling? If you’re Sheila Heti (Motherhood and How Should a Person Be?), you write one that does. Her latest novel Pure Colour fictionalizes this celebrated author’s private encounters with grief into the story of the world’s first draft, where a woman named Mira turns into a leaf. Join Heti and filmmaker Jennifer Reeder for a conversation about what it means to live a first draft life in a first draft world, making (and revising) first draft art.

Grab a ticket here.

Please visit the CHF FAQ for more information about ticketing, books, accessibility options, and other event logistics.


The Chicago Humanities Festival connects people to the ideas that shape and define us, and promotes the lifelong exploration of what it means to be human.

Sheila Heti is the author of ten books, including the novels Pure ColourMotherhood, and How Should a Person Be?, which New York magazine deemed one of the “New Classics” of the twenty-first century. She was named one of the “New Vanguard” by the New York Times book critics, who, along with a dozen other magazines and newspapers, chose Motherhood as a top book of 2018. Her books have been translated into twenty-four languages. She lives in Toronto and Kawartha Lakes, Ontario.

Jennifer Reeder was recently named by Bong Joon Ho as a filmmaker to watch in the 2020s. Her award-winning films have shown consistently around the world, including the Sundance Film Festival, The Berlin Film Festival, The Tribeca Film Festival, The Rotterdam Film Festival, The London Film Festival, SXSW, The Venice Biennale, and The Whitney Biennial. A collection of her short films is currently streaming on the Criterion Channel.  Feature length titles include Knives and SkinVHS94Night’s End, and the forthcoming Perpetrator.


May 14, 2022 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm


Stagg Court


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