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Canceled — The Crisis of the Working Class in Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope


Includes a copy of Tightrope

Out of stock

Thursday, 7:00 pm March 19, 2020

This event has been canceled. If you have any questions, please email us at

Powerhouse couple, Pulitzer Prize-winning and best-selling writers Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn join Joe Wilkins, 2019 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize finalist to talk about the overlapping themes in their work. In both Tightrope and Fall Back Down When I Die, economic hardship among working-class Americans and the accompanying sense of desperation lead to violence, death, and despair. The authors look beyond the stereotypes to investigate the roots and expressions of hopelessness, and to better understand the ways power and class influence people to work against themselves and each other.

This conversation is part of our On America series, which investigates the systems of power that operate within stories we tell, explicitly and covertly affecting the way we perceive ourselves and others. Who are we? Who are we becoming? How do the stories we tell shape who we are as a nation?



  • © Michael Lionstar 2019 - Carla Cain-Walther

    Nicholas D. Kristoff and Sheryl WuDunn

    Nicholas D. Kristoff and Sheryl WuDunn

    Nicholas D. Kristoff and Sheryl WuDunn the first husband and wife to share a Pulitzer Prize for journalism, have coauthored four previous books: A Path Appears, Half the Sky, Thunder from the East, and China Wakes. They were awarded a Pulitzer in 1990 for their coverage of China, as well as the 2009 Dayton Literary Peace Prize Lifetime Achievement Award. Now an op-ed columnist for the New York Times, Kristof was previously bureau chief in Hong Kong, Beijing, and Tokyo. He won his second Pulitzer in 2006 for his columns on Darfur. WuDunn worked at the Times as a business editor and foreign correspondent in Tokyo and Beijing, and now works in finance and consulting. They live near New York City.

  • Joe Wilkins - Credit TBD

    Joe Wilkins

    Joe Wilkins

    Joe Wilkins is the author of the award-winning memoir The Mountain and the Fathers. His work has appeared in the Georgia Review, the Harvard Review, Slate, and elsewhere. He is a Pushcart Prize winner and a finalist for the National Magazine Award and the PEN/USA Award. He lives with his wife and two children in western Oregon, where he teaches writing at Linfield College.