5/03

Succeed2gether’s Montclair Literary Festival: Frank Bruni-“The Age of Grievance”

7:00pm - 8:00pm
First Congregational Church

Come on Friday, May 3rd at 7PM as Succeed2gether’s Montclair Literary Festival welcomes bestselling author and journalist Frank Bruni in conversation about The Age of Grievance

From bestselling author and longtime New York Times columnist Frank Bruni comes a lucid, powerful examination of the ways in which grievance has come to define our current culture and politics, on both the right and left.

The twists and turns of American politics are unpredictable, but the tone is a troubling given. It’s one of grievance. More and more Americans are convinced that they’re losing because somebody else is winning. More and more tally their slights, measure their misfortune, and assign particular people responsibility for it. The blame game has become the country’s most popular sport and victimhood its most fashionable garb.

Grievance needn’t be bad. It has done enormous good. The United States is a nation born of grievance, and across the nearly two hundred and fifty years of our existence as a country, grievance has been the engine of morally urgent change. But what happens when all sorts of grievances—the greater ones, the lesser ones, the authentic, the invented—are jumbled together? When people take their grievances to lengths that they didn’t before? A violent mob storms the US Capitol, rejecting the results of a presidential election. Conspiracy theories flourish. Fox News knowingly peddles lies in the service of profit. College students chase away speakers, and college administrators dismiss instructors for dissenting from progressive orthodoxy. Benign words are branded hurtful; benign gestures are deemed hostile. And there’s a potentially devastating erosion of the civility, common ground, and compromise necessary for our democracy to survive.

How did we get here? What does it say about us, and where does it leave us? The Age of Grievance examines these critical questions and charts a path forward.

Tickets to hear Frank in person cost $35 and include a copy of the book. Books will be available from our Festival partner Watchung Booksellers. Books will be available for pick up at the event on Friday, May 4th. No early pick-ups from our Festival partner Watchung Booksellers please!

Frank Bruni has been a prominent journalist for more than three decades, including more than twenty-five years at The New York Times, the last ten of them as a nationally renowned op-ed columnist who appeared frequently as a television commentator. (His archive of columns, starting with the most recent, can be found here.) He was also a White House correspondent for the Times, its Rome bureau chief and, for five years, its chief restaurant critic. He is the author of four New York Times bestsellers, including The Beauty of Dusk, which reached #5 on both the hardcover nonfiction and the combined print and e-book nonfiction lists. In July 2021, he became a professor at Duke University, teaching media-oriented classes in the Sanford School of Public Policy. He continues to write his popular weekly newsletter for the Times (you can sign up here) and to produce occasional essays as one of the newspaper’s Contributing Opinion Writers. He lives in Chapel Hill, N.C.

Any proceeds from the festival benefit parent organization, Montclair-based non-profit Succeed2gether, which offers free after-school one-on-one tutoring and enrichment classes with the aim of closing the education and opportunity gaps in Essex County, NJ. You can read more about Succeed2gether and the festival at www.succeed2gether.org.