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In the Eye of the Wild: Rencontre avec Nastassja Martin (in English)

February 26, 2022 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm CST

Saturday, February 26, 2022
12pm PST / 1pm MST / 2pm CST / 3pm EST
Alliance Française de Seattle
In English

Join the Alliance Française de Seattle, in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company, for an online discussion with French author and anthropologist Nastassja Martin, who will discuss her latest novel In the Eye of the Wild, published by New York Review Books. AFSeattle French instructor Aimie Shaw, PhD in French literature, will facilitate this virtual interview, which will be followed by a Q&A session with the audience.


Nastassja Martin is a French author and anthropologist who has studied the Gwich-in people of Alaska and the Even people of the Kamchatka Peninsula. Along with In the Eye of the Wild, she has written Les Âmes sauvages: Face à l’Occident, la résistance d’un peuple d’Alaska, for which she received the Prix Louis Castex of the French Academy.


In the Eye of the Wild begins with an account of the French anthropologist Nastassja Martin’s near fatal run-in with a Kamchatka bear in the mountains of Siberia. Martin’s professional interest is animism; she addresses philosophical questions about the relation of humankind to nature, and in her work she seeks to partake as fully as she can in the lives of the indigenous peoples she studies. Her violent encounter with the bear, however, brings her face-to-face with something entirely beyond her ken—the untamed, the nonhuman, the animal, the wild. In the course of that encounter something in the balance of her world shifts. A change takes place that she must somehow reckon with.

Left severely mutilated, dazed with pain, Martin undergoes multiple operations in a provincial Russian hospital, while also being grilled by the secret police. Back in France, she finds herself back on the operating table, a source of new trauma. She realizes that the only thing for her to do is to return to Kamchatka. She must discover what it means to have become, as the Even people call it, medka, a person who is half human, half bear.

In the Eye of the Wild is a fascinating, mind-altering book about terror, pain, endurance, and self-transformation, comparable in its intensity of perception and originality of style to J. A. Baker’s classic The Peregrine. Here Nastassja Martin takes us to the farthest limits of human being.

Please click here to purchase the book in English.

This event is free and is open to the public. Please click here to register.


February 26, 2022
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm CST
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