Robert Putnam, Our Kids: The American Dream In Crisis

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Robert Putnam, Our Kids: The American Dream In Crisis
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Robert Putnam, Our Kids: The American Dream In Crisis says
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 last twenty-five 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.

Our Kids is a rare combination of individual testimony and rigorous evidence and offers a personal but 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.

Robert D. Putnam is the Peter and Isabel Malkin Professor of Public Policy at Harvard University. Nationally honored as a leading humanist and a renowned scientist, he has written fourteen books and has consulted for the last four U.S. Presidents. His research program, the Saguaro Seminar, is dedicated to fostering civic engagement in America.

Admission for all lectures is $5 members, $10 nonmembers, and free to AHC Insiders unless otherwise noted. Reservations are required, please call 404.814.4150 or reserve tickets online at AtlantaHistoryCenter.com/Lectures.

Support: This program is presented in partnership with The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta.
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By: Atlanta History Center