Gay Talese Gives Curiosity the Credit

December 5, 2013 | CUNY Lecture Series, Graduate Center

Legendary journalist Gay Talese admits that a lot of his talent stems from his innate curiosity about his subjects, real or imagined. “I’m not creating anything. What I am doing is trying, as best I can, to befriend people, including people I’m interviewing or want to interview,” said Talese, who discussed his life and times with CUNY Interim Chancellor William P. Kelly as part of the Extraordinary Lives Series at the Graduate Center. Known for his groundbreaking “New Journalism” magazine profiles of Frank Sinatra in the 1960s, Talese, has authored eleven books, including the best-selling The Kingdom and the Power,  Unto Thy Sons and Thy Neighbor’s Wife. The 81-year-old says the desire to know or learn still propels him today. “I’m very curious about how different I am from them.”