Author and Rolling Stone staffer Matt Taibbi is under fire for excerpts from a 2000 book he co-authored with Mark Ames, The Exile: Sex, Drugs, and Libel in the New Russia, about his time working for an alt-weekly in Russia. The memoir, which was published with a note indicating it was all non-fiction, detailed Taibbi’s and Ames’s harassment of their female colleagues, including lines like this:
“We have been pretty rough on our girls. We’d ask our Russian staff to flash their asses or breasts for us. We’d tell them that if they wanted to keep their jobs, they’d have to perform unprotected anal sex with us.”
Taibbi was scheduled to speak at a Politics & Prose event this Thursday at the Sidwell Friends Meeting House, but the event has been canceled. Asked why, a spokesperson from Politics & Prose declined to comment.
Taibbi also canceled an appearance in Chicago last week. After being questioned about The Exile by NPR’s Robin Young, Taibbi wrote on his Facebook page saying the non-fiction memoir was fictional.
It was a pleasure last night to sit and talk at a Harvard Bookstore event with the excellent Robin Young of NPR’s Here…
“I regret many editorial decisions that I made back then, and putting my name as a co-author on a book that used cruel and misogynistic language to describe many people and women in particular,” his statement read in part.
As of Wednesday afternoon, no women have come forward accusing Taibbi of harassment or assault. Rolling Stone magazine released a statement to CNN standing by Taibbi, saying he had always been “utterly professional.”