By Alex Prawdzik
Students and faculty were introduced to the 2015 James H. Ottaway Sr. Visiting Professorship, Alissa Quart, during a question and answer talk with President Donald P. Christian. Alissa shared her insight about journalism and the use of media while also discussing highlights from her career, which includes being editor of Economic Hardship Reporting Project, a non-profit devoted to developing and supporting journalism about inequality and authoring three books.
Alissa Quart’s published work
1. Republic of Outsiders – Republic of Outsiders is about the growing number of Americans who disrupt the status quo: outsiders who seek to redefine a wide variety of fields, from film and mental health to diplomacy and music, from how we see gender to what we eat. This deeply reported book shows how and why these groups now gather, organize, and create new communities and economies.
2. Branded – In Branded, Alissa Quart illuminates the unsettling new reality of marketing to teenagers, as well as the quieter but no less worrisome forms of teen branding. This includes the teen consultants who work for corporations in exchange for product, the girls obsessed with cosmetic surgery who will do anything to look like women on TV and those teens simply obsessed with admission into a name-brand college.
3. Hothouse Kids – Hothouse Kids breaks the news about an issue that will be of urgent concern to parents and educators as well as adult readers with “gifted” pasts: the dilemma of the gifted child. Quart traveled the country to research the many ways in which the current craze to “produce” gifted kids and prodigies has gone too far.
4. Monetized – Monetized reflects upon a shared longing for the analogue era, as well as our longing for a less commercialized past. This book is a remarkable account of a state of yearning for the passing moment in a period of rapid acceleration, a feeling Quart calls “right-now-nostalgia.”
Poems by Quart:
2. Palm Springs at the End of the Mind