Tonight's New American Writing series of contemporary fiction readings stars Wayne Koestenbaum and Jim Krusoe. If you're unaware of their writing — let alone their existence — you should be ashamed of yourself. Speaking of which, humiliation is the focus of Koestenbaum's 2011 book, Humiliation (Picador), billed as “a meditation on one of the most disquieting of human experiences.” Well, humiliation isn't what it used to be; there's a whole genre of cinema devoted to it now. But Koestenbaum's take on tackling it is to own it: full-bore and wholeheartedly. While one person's “ownage”; is another person's “overcompensation,” Koestenbaum presents the problem with great humor and understanding, laying bare one of the great motivators of human nature. In counterpoint — and likely asking him about all of this — is Krusoe. The author of Iceland (Dalkey Archive Press), Krusoe founded literary arts journal Santa Monica Review in 1988 and teaches writing at Santa Monica College — all things to be extortionately proud of, point-counterpointedly enough. Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., UCLA; Wed., June 27, 7:30 p.m., free. (310) 443-7000,

Wed., June 27, 7:30 p.m., 2012

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