Eye to Eye: Q & A with Lewis Lapham and Adam Harrison Levy
On November 15, 2010, Adam Harrison Levy conducted a one-on-one interview with famed writer and editor Lewis Lapham.
Having enjoyed what The New York Times has called “a literary and journalistic existence etched from a sepia-toned New York of late nights at Elaine’s … and writerly camaraderie,” Lewis Lapham is best known for his 30-year tenure as editor in chief of Harper’s magazine, where he not only commented pointedly on the twilight of American empire in his monthly “Notebook” column but also commissioned such breakthrough works of long-form journalism as David Foster Wallace’s first-person account of a one-week trip aboard a luxury Caribbean cruise ship. With 14 books to his credit, Lapham has explored everything from his own patrician background as a scion of the Texaco fortune to the Beatles’ ill-fated time with the Maharishi Yogi in India to reasons why George W. Bush should have been impeached from office. Since his departure from Harper’s in 2006, Lapham has been editor of the eponymous Lapham’s Quarterly—a single-topic compendium of historical and contemporary writings on such matters as Money, War, Celebrity and Food—and host of a weekly podcast series for Bloomberg interviewing contemporary historians and scholars on timely world issues.
Adam Harrison Levy is a writer and freelance documentary film producer and director. For the past 15 years, he has worked on a wide range of historical and arts films, primarily for the BBC. He was the U.S. producer for Selling the Sixties, a cultural history of the world of advertising in New York in the early 1960s, as well as for the BBC films Close Up, about the artist Chuck Close, and David Ogilvy: Original Mad Man. For the BBC and Channel 4 he has produced and directed countless interviews with a wide range of actors, writers, musicians and film-makers.