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Goodbye David Rakoff

by Keather Gougler on August 10, 2012

in Jan writes ...

Jan Davidson and David Rakoff

Jan Davidson and David Rakoff in Grand Central Station, March 2012

David Rakoff, writer and performer, died Aug 9, 2012 at his home in New York City. He was 47. He was a Folk School student who wrote of his Brasstown experiences in a New York Times T Magazine article in 2007. He was a member of the Folk School Board of Directors. He was a regular contributor to public radio’s This American Life. “The New Tenants” for which he adapted the script and played the lead role, won the best short live action film Academy Award in 2010. He published three books of humorous essays, Fraud, Don’t Get Too Comfortable and Half Empty. In 2011, he won the Thurber Prize, the highest literary honor for humor writing.

David Rakoff loved the Folk School, and did all he could to help it.

Here’s a link to his article.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Susi Hall August 14, 2012 at 5:44 pm

David Rakoff was a wonderful writer and a deep human being. His work was often sardonic, and always intelligent. But, after his visit to the Folk School, the piece he wrote about his experience was positive and loving.

After that, Keather and I went to NYC to meet him for an interview. He suggested a favorite knitting shop in Soho and arrived in typical NY downtown edgy regalia: black jeans, black t-shirt, black baseball cap. We sat for a long time over coffee and got to know a little more about this gentle, humanitarian man.

He will be much missed and his books on my shelves will continue to be treasured.


Tamara August 10, 2012 at 5:48 pm

A terrific writer; and it was a terrific farewell (as it turned out) performance on the live This American Life show. I liked the NY Times article, too.


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