At Skylight: Jack Skelley presents THE COMPLETE FEAR OF KATHY ACKER w/ Chris Kraus

At Skylight: Jack Skelley presents THE FEAR OF KATHY ACKER w/ Chris Kraus

Join us for the first complete edition of this notorious novel which maps the 1980s anarchic underground of Los Angeles.

Published in excerpts over almost four decades, Jack Skelley’s “secretly legendary” novel is at once an homage to the thrillingly inventive spirit of Kathy Acker’s cut-up novels and a definitive history of LA’s underground culture of the mid-1980s. 

Composed in bursts, Fear of Kathy Acker depicts Los Angeles through the eyes of a self-mocking narrator. Shifting styles and personae as he moves between Venice and Torrance, punk clubs and shopping malls, Disneyland and Dodger Stadium, Jack Skelley pushes the limits of language and identity while pursuing—much as Kathy Acker did—a quixotic literary mix of discipline and anarchy. In this adrenalized, cosmic, and comic chronicle of Los Angeles, Skelley’s “real life” friends make cameo appearances alongside pop archetypes from Madonna to Billy Idol. 

This first-ever complete edition of the book includes new essays, playlists, and a map of the 1980s Los Angeles in which its manic protagonist lives and loves.

Jack Skelley is the author of MonstersDennis Wilson and Charlie Manson, and Interstellar Theme Park: New and Selected Writing. During the years when Fear of Kathy Acker was written, Skelley produced the music series and coproduced the reading and performance series at Beyond Baroque while editing and publishing Barney: The Modern Stone Age Magazine, featuring major artists and writers. He is a songwriter and guitarist for the psychedelic surf band Lawndale.

Chris Kraus is the author of four novels, including I Love Dick and Summer of Hate; two books of art and cultural criticism; and most recently, After Kathy Acker: A Literary Biography. She received the College Art Association’s Frank Jewett Mather Award in Art Criticism in 2008, and a Warhol Foundation Art Writing grant in 2011. She lives in Los Angeles.

Event date: 
Friday, June 16, 2023 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
The Complete Fear of Kathy Acker By Jack Skelley, Amy Gerstler (Introduction by), Sabrina Tarasoff (Afterword by) Cover Image
By Jack Skelley, Amy Gerstler (Introduction by), Sabrina Tarasoff (Afterword by)
ISBN: 9781635901856
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Semiotext(e) - June 6th, 2023