Ilf and Petrov’s American Roadtrip

Date: Tuesday, 21 November 2006, 7 pm
Location: Housing Works Bookstore. 126 Crosby Street, New York
FREE. No RSVP necessary

Cabinet and Housing Works Bookstore presented a discussion of Ilf and Petrov’s American Road Trip, a new book co-published by Cabinet and Princeton Architectural Press. The first-ever English translation of the 1936 Soviet classic, this book is as fascinating to those interested in Depression-era America as to scholars of Soviet-American relations.

The panel comprised the book’s editor Erika Wolf, Russian artists Natasha and Valera Cherkashin, and moderator Sina Najafi. Their talk was followed by a question-and-answer session, book signing, and vodka consumption.

Selected reviews
USA Today, 19 October 2006
“Ilf and Petrov’s words and images from their two-month journey criss-crossing the states are now published in English in this sometimes sardonic, often witty and always fascinating travelogue. ... Readers will be struck by how many of Ilf and Petrov’s observations, made seven decades ago at the height of the Depression, still hold true.”

Booklist, October 2006
“Starting out from New York City in late November 1935, they drove to Chicago and then in a southerly circuit through Missouri and the Southwest, up to San Francisco and back via southern Texas and the Gulf and tidewater coasts to Manhattan after New Year’s...Impeccably translated, edited, and introduced, and supplemented by artist Aleksandr Rodchenko’s prepublication assessment of the original photos and remarks by Ilf's daughter, Aleksandra, this is riveting, fresh-eyed Americana and—how d’you say?—Sovietana?”

Thanks to Housing Works for hosting this event.