PEN isn't the only New York-based literary outfit consumed with catering to rich people, even as other sections of the country suffer economic collapse. There's also the Accompanied Literary Society, whose name is a rich folks rip-off of the Underground Literary Alliance, and whose web site can be found on this blog's Links under "Piggy Plutocrats." To be fair, ALS shares many of the same players as PEN. It's more-or-less the same privileged pleasure-seeking Insider party crowd.
Latest shindig for ALS was a celebration of Jay McInerney at the Montauk Yacht Club. According to Page Six, "150 bibliophiles dressed in white for a dinner hosted by the Accompanied Literary Society's Brooke Geahan in a compound of fantasy cottages built by impresario Florenz Ziegfeld to house his three mistresses during Prohibition." Can anyone say, about New York literati, "out of touch"?
The lowlight of the party was when actress Claire Danes and beaux Hugh Dancy danced to the song "Nobody Loves You When You're Down and Out." A poke in the eye to the rest of America?
ALS is one thing; PEN another. Let the Manhattan rich have ALS. PEN should return to its principles.
For photos of the big literary shindig, revealing how detached this crowd is, see
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