EventsAuthor Robert D. Putnam Discusses "Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis"

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Author Robert D. Putnam Discusses "Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis"

6:00 PM – 7:30 PM
Harold Washington Library Center

Description

Robert D. Putnam discusses his new book, Our Kids: The American Dream In Crisis, a groundbreaking examination of the growing inequality gap from the bestselling author of Bowling Alone, discussing the premise of why fewer Americans today have the opportunity for upward mobility.

It's the American dream: get a good education, work hard, buy a house, and achieve prosperity and success. This is the America we believe in—a nation of opportunity, constrained only by ability and effort. But during the past 25 years we have seen a disturbing "opportunity gap" emerge. Americans have always believed in equality of opportunity, the idea that all kids, regardless of their family background, should have a decent chance to improve their lot in life. Now, this central tenet of the American dream seems no longer true or at the least, much less true than it was.

Robert Putnam—about whom The Economist said, "his scholarship is wide-ranging, his intelligence luminous, his tone modest, his prose unpretentious and frequently funny"—offers a personal but also authoritative look at this new American crisis. Putnam begins with his high school class of 1959 in Port Clinton, Ohio. By and large the vast majority of those students—"our kids"—went on to lives better than those of their parents. But their children and grandchildren have had harder lives amid diminishing prospects. Putnam tells the tale of lessening opportunity through poignant life stories of rich and poor kids from cities and suburbs across the country, drawing on a formidable body of research done especially for this book. Our Kids is a rare combination of individual testimony and rigorous evidence. Putnam provides a disturbing account of the American dream that should initiate a deep examination of the future of our country.

Presented by Chicago Community Trust and the Chicago Public Library.

Seating is available first come, first served. Books are available for purchase and the author will autograph books at the conclusion of the program.

Suitable for:
Adults
Type:
Author Events
Language:
English

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