tv Tom Wolfe I Am Charlotte Simmons Book Tour CSPAN August 20, 2020 3:15pm-3:37pm EDT
every weekend on c-span2. tonight starting at 8:00 p.m. eastern, robert gates and james mattis look at the use of u.s. power around the world since the end of world war ii. in christian rose, former staff director of the senate of services committee high-tech warfare. his secretary and director of policy. talk about the nuclear arms race for two. c-span2. >> do thousand four, and was discussing his normal, i am charlotte senate. book tv, accompanied him as he appeared at the aspen institute and was just a radio show.
journalists are much more apt to be talking to professors then to students. i discovered right away that students today are eager to talk about an older person about what they are doing. in this case, it was a novel, no danger of being identified by name or by looks. they couldn't tell me enough, a group of boys and girls ending up in the same place. he goes over and i said something really smooth and they were like, i bet you get tired of being mistaken for britney spears. it's an example in the book and
to reviewers said anybody thought britney spears was still hot had to be way behind the times. they call me that now with my occupation. [laughter] only he touches the outside of the knee and she still is receptive, would you like to dance? it was something like two and a half minutes had gone by. kind of danced slow, ten years ago it was called the limbaugh. dirty dancing and all that. that's a fancy name for what actually takes place. today it's known as grinding. the girl and the boy lock and
they begin grinding and they grind and grind and grind and grind. most are about three minutes so now five and a half minutes have gone by and probably the guy in this case, will use his, you want a ride back to the campus? that codeword for whose bed to be go to, yours or mine? to me, it's an extremely important subject. the colleges have replaced religions at the guidance and morality and to me, it is a big subject and i try to portray it all to the eyes of an innocent girl.
>> a couple of questions i want you to tell us. my question is, i'm interested in -- [inaudible] >> the book is entitled i am charlotte and who or what did i intend charlotte, the character to represent? i used her personal as carrie mueller, he gave her the most unique name he could. going to chicago, this is the first american novel, you see it through her eyes and she knows nothing. that was my original idea in using growth from carolina.
900 folks, only town in the county. a girl who's been raised by a strict mother and evangelical christian, you probably heard evangelical christian. she's very strict and domineering father was laid off, unemployed factory worker. tom began to factory so although there is a fast in the north carolina high school, there are some things like chewing tobacco and she's not part of any of that, in her mind, she wants life over mind.
she represents innocence. i wanted to make her a possible example about what it really meant, another guy sent up to the room, what it really means and feels like. what is really like to another person with modesty. to strengthen herself, they do that with charlotte simmons and by the end of the book, she doesn't know she is.
i think that happens to a lot of college students. at the end of four years, they have no idea who they are anymore so that was the purpose. >> had you had any inkling of this? [inaudible conversations] >> maybe she did that, that's how people do it. it has begun, they have written a novel. >> we have definitely heard that.
reporting of realistic fiction. for his latest novel, he traded his landmark white suit for a blue blazer. he set out for the nations institutes of higher learning. the result is satire of campus sex and party at a mythical ivy league campus. his new book is titled i am charlotte simmons. it features wolf first female protagonist. she is a scholarship girl from a tiny north carolina mountain town will tom wolf joins me in studio to talk about her and adventures on campus and perhaps give us a sense of his own adventures and he wrote this book.
when you made the decision to go in to various college campuses, where you specifically focusing in your own mind on sexuality? or was it simply i want to find out what life is like on college campuses today? >> it is a bit of both. there were certain things i heard about colleges that even more because nothing was written about it. one was report there was a lot more effects on campuses and norms. i said to myself, why hasn't anybody written about this? it was odd because it's very titillating. there were a lot of reports about what was now called binge drinking. that didn't really prove to be strong on campuses, it exists
but then the story about political correctness. that intrigued me and also the fact that colleges now, the places where the changes and ethics are created. the leading indicator. this is a chapter in which charlotte simmons was off to this magnificent university in the northeast and is writing home to her parents who dropped her off in the pickup truck and headed back to the mountains so she's writing a beautiful letter home. my best friend so far is from ohio who lives on my floor. we met when each of us was
having a hard time sleeping and decided to go to the room on the first floor and read for a while. she is energetic person, not shot at all. she wants to meet somebody, she just pipes right up and says hello. she takes great care, not to say she had been exiled, run out of her room by her roommate who wanted to bring a boy to her bed. generally i sleep well, the only problem is my roommate goes to bed really late. she will go to bed at 3:00 a.m., 4:00 a.m. or even 5:00 a.m. she writes 2:00 a.m. sometimes and it wakes me up when she comes in. she sat back in the chair once more and stairs into the darkness. right here was where she either cried out or she didn't cry out.
only you can help me, who else do i have? who else will listen to me? let me tell you the truth. doesn't just returned to the dead of night and go to bed really late, brings boys into bed and they do it, barely forth from my bed. girls sex each other. sats, i need some. i'm going to get laid. i'm talking about the girls. what am i to do? swallowed it all. one little mention of sex and the wrath of god would hit east of the pickup off her back in the whole county was out. charlotte dropped out, poor thing thinks it's emerald there.
>> you have captured something that i've been feeling not just young women but young men and older men and women will most definitely recognize. tom wolf, reading from his brand-new book, it's titled, i am charlotte simmons. ♪ >> i think we will stop with that e-mail for tom wolf. this addressed to doctor wolf. his is from patty in florida she says i'm just was reading, i loved it. i was particularly intrigued with your contrast with what charlotte was learning in her neuroscience biology course and
the basis for animalistic behavior versus those behaviors demonstrated by the higher order most and institution of higher learning and behaviors were the same. my question, how did you educate yourself in those areas and is this contrast academics and pop culture your typical approach to writing. >> neuroscience is the ultimate darwinism. now finding hookups in your brain that gives you the sense of smell and taste, it gives you feelings of danger and the end result, it's creating an impression that we are machines.
your belief that you have a self that's your own, there is i inside of you, much less if you have a soul. it's disappearing as a result of neuroscience and i thought it was the perfect way to analyze scientifically what was happening to my girl, charlotte simmons as she comes into contact with people and customs she's never had to deal with before. the last part of the question, no, i've never done that to this extent. bring the two together and mentioned it before but i try to immerse charlotte herself and the reader in the latest series
of neuroscience because ultimately they are depressing. >> how appropriate that the book should be titled i am charlotte simmons. what a pleasure to talk with you. >> thanks so much for having me. wonderful show. >> thanks for listening. ♪ ♪ ♪ >> you are watching tv on c-span2. every weekend with the latest nonfiction books and authors. c-span2, created by america's cable television company is a public service and brought to you today for your television provider. ♪
>> you are watching tv as we look at the late novelist, tom wolf, 30 appearances on book tv and c-span. up next, 2006 the british and virginia sanders in his travel throughout the south. >> it is great to be back and special honor to be invited to introduce tom wolf and a huge burden because one is an economist of course, two weeks ago there was an economist and literary realism. for years, tom wolf had the literary establishment for the best story around. america positively rates with fantastic stories in their manhattan loss and