Thomas Frank discusses Rendezvous with Oblivion
KPFA Radio 94.1 FM and Pegasus Books present
Wednesday, July 11, 2018, 7:30 pm
St. John’s Presbyterian Church, 2727 College Avenue, Berkeley
Entry $12: brownpapertickets.com, Pegasus Books (3 stores), Books Inc (Berkeley), Moe’s, Walden Pond Bookstore, East Bay Books, Mrs. Dalloway’s
What does a middle-class democracy look like when it falls apart? When – after forty years of economic triumph – the country’s fiscal winners persuade themselves that they owe nothing whatsoever to the rest of the country? With his exceptionally sharp eye for detail, Thomas Frank takes us on a wide-ranging tour through present day America, showing us a society in the final stages of disintegration, and describing the worlds of both the winners and the losers—the sprawling mansion districts as well as the daily lives of fast-food workers.
Rendezvous with Oblivion is a collection of interlocking essays examining exactly how grotesque inequality has manifested itself in our cities, in our jobs, in the way we travel, and of course in our politics, where in 2016, millions of anxious ordinary people rallied to the insulting presidential campaign of a billionaire who had only contempt for them.
These accounts of folly and exploitation are brought together in this volume, unified by Frank’s distinctive voice, sardonic wit, and fresh, anti-orthodox perspective. They capture a society where status signifiers are hollow, where the allure of mobility is merely another con job, and where rebellion too often yields nothing. For those who despair of the future of this country, Rendezvous with Obliviion is a booster shot of energy, reality, and welcome moral outrage.
“Thomas Frank combines two things absent from most liberal commentary: muckraking reporting and satiric wit.” — New York Times’ Book Review
Thomas Frank is the author of the New York Times’ bestselling What’s the Matter with Kansas? as well as Listen, Liberal, and Pity the Billionaire, and The Wrecking Crew. A former columnist for The Wall Street Journal and Harper’s, he is the founding editor of The Baffler, and writes regularly for The Guardian.
Kris Welch is a veteran, very popular KPFA on-air host, a mother, and a devoted grandmother.