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An Evening with Esther Perel

October 24, 2017
8:00 pm
Cubberley Theater

Why do people cheat--even those in happy marriages? And what can affairs teach us about relationships? There is one simple act of transgression that can rob a couple of their relationship, their happiness, their very identity: an affair. Yet this extremely common act is poorly understood. As a culture, we are ever more open about sex, but infidelity remains shrouded in a cloud of shame, secrecy, divisiveness and judgment. This age-old taboo is ripe for reexamination, says world-renowned couples therapist and bestselling author Esther Perel. In The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity she does just that, challenging assumptions, upending conventional wisdom and offering a fresh, nuanced look at affairs from multiple viewpoints. If her viral TED 2015 talk on the topic (7.5 million views to date) is anything to go by, her message strikes a powerful chord. Poised to become a blockbuster sensation, this masterful follow-up to her international hit Mating in Captivity is controversial and convincing in equal measure. For the past ten years, Perel has traveled the globe and worked with hundreds of couples grappling with infidelity. She witnessed firsthand how much devastation this intimate betrayal can cause--both the act itself and the reactions to it. While much has been written about prevention and recovery, she notes, much less has been said about how couples can learn and grow from the experience, becoming more honest and resilient. Perel is clear: understanding infidelity does not mean justifying it. Nor does she seek to minimize the acute emotions involved, whether from an online flirtation, a one-night stand or a long-running affair. However, she does advocate reaching beyond blame and victimization. With the right approach, she argues, an affair can even be the doorway to a new marriage--with the same person. Affairs, Perel writes, have a lot to teach us about relationships--what we expect, what we think we want and what we feel entitled to. Through examining illicit love from multiple angles, The State of Affairs invites readers into an honest, enlightened and entertaining exploration of modern marriage in its many variations. "Love is messy; infidelity more so," Perel concludes, "But it is also a window, like none other, into the crevices of the human heart." About the author: Esther Perel is recognized as one of today's most insightful and provocative voices on personal and professional relationships. A celebrated couples therapist who has helmed a private practice in New York City since 1983, she has over three decades of experience navigating the intricacies of love and desire. Her international bestseller Mating in Captivity has been translated into 26 languages. Perel is a dynamic and provocative speaker on the international stage, with two critically praised TED talks that have reached over 17 million viewers. She has consulted on the Golden Globe-winning Showtime series The Affair and is also Executive Producer and host of the Audible original series Where Should We Begin?, in which she broadcasts intimate one-off counseling sessions with real-life couples. Perel has been featured in publications across five continents, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Le Monde, The Guardian, The New Yorker and Vogue. She is also a frequent guest on radio and television shows, including NPR's Brian Lehrer Show, Oprah, The Today Show, Dr. Oz and The Colbert Report. Learn more at Buy your ticket/book bundles in advance and save! Books will also be available for sale at the event for $26.99 plus tax. Please Note: As part of the JCC Without Walls program, this event will take place at the Cubberley Theatre in Palo Alto. Cubberley Theatre | 4000 Middlefield Road, T2, Palo Alto, CA 94303 $30 Ticket and book bundle $22 General Public (ticket only) | $18 Members and J-Pass holders (ticket only) | $12 Students (ticket only) For more information, please visit

Cubberley Theater

4000 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto, CA
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