On July 20, 2023, at 6:30pm EDT, join us in-person in the Library’s Jefferson Building in room LJ119 or online when Robert Putnam and Shaylyn Romney Garrett will discuss their book, “The Upswing: How America Came Together a Century Ago and How We Can Do It Again” in a conversation with Ryan Reft from the Library of Congress Manuscript division.
This event will support the Library of Congress Join In: Voluntary Associations in America exhibit. A limited number of copies of “The Upswing” will be available for purchase at the event. To join us in-person, just reserve a timed entry ticket to the Jefferson Building.
Robert D. Putnam is the Malkin Research Professor of Public Policy at Harvard University. A member of the National Academy of Sciences, a fellow of the British Academy, and past president of the American Political Science Association, in 2006 he received the Skytte Prize, the world’s highest accolade for a political scientist. In 2012, then-President Barack Obama awarded Bob the National Humanities Medal, the nation’s highest honor for contributions to the humanities. He has written 15 books, which have been translated into 20 languages, including “Making Democracy Work: Civic Traditions in Italy” and “Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community,” both among the most cited (and bestselling) social science works in nearly a century. He has consulted for Presidents Carter, Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama, as well as presidents and prime ministers from the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Finland to South Korea and Singapore. His most recent book, “The Upswing: How America Came Together a Century Ago and How We Can Do It Again” (2020), is a widely praised study of broad 20th century American economic, social, political, and cultural trends.
Shaylyn Romney Garrett is a celebrated author, speaker, and social entrepreneur whose work offers a fresh take on political polarization, social isolation, economic inequality, and culture change. Her commentary has appeared in various outlets including NPR, PBS Newshour, the BBC, Deseret Magazine, TIME Magazine and the New York Times. Romney Garrett holds a degree in government from Harvard University and served in the Peace Corps. She spent six years in Jordan working to catalyze youth social innovation there. Upon returning to the U.S., she helped found “Weave: The Social Fabric Project” at The Aspen Institute with David Brooks. She is a member of the Braver Angels Scholars Council and Citizen University’s Civic Collaboratory. She lives with her husband and two young children in beautiful southwestern New Hampshire.
Ryan Reft is a historian of the modern U.S. with a focus on domestic policy and politics in the Manuscript Division of the Library of Congress. He received his Ph.D. in U.S. urban history from the University California San Diego in 2014. He oversees collections pertaining to the law, Congress, journalism, non-governmental organizations, and LGBTQ+ activism. He co-curated the 2017 exhibition, Echoes of the Great War: American Experiences of World War I. His work has appeared in anthologies, academic journals, Library of Congress blogs, and popular media such as KCET (Los Angeles) and the Washington Post.
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