Child & Youth Well-being Events Events 2015

Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis – A lecture by Robert Putnam

Date: April 15, 2015
Location: Graham Chapel, Washington University in St. Louis

​Join us at Graham Chapel at noon on April 15 for a lecture by best-selling author, consultant to three American Presidents and current Harvard Professor Robert Putnam. He will discuss his new book,  “Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis.” It is a groundbreaking examination of the growing inequality gap, in which fewer Americans today have the opportunity for upward mobility.

Noon-1 PM

A book signing will follow the lecture.

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.

This event is cosponsored by the Center for Social Development, Center for Household Financial Stability, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Weidenbaum Center on the Economy, Government, and Public Policy, Department of Sociology, Gephardt Institute for Public Service, and Policy Forum’s Ferguson & Beyond: Brown School Response Series.