In THIS LAND: America, Lost and Found, the veteran New York Times writer Dan Barry presents nearly 100 essays from a decade of his distinctive This Land columns. These pieces, culled from visits to every one of the 50 states, explore uniquely American moments: a community’s send-off for an 18-year-old beginning her Army career in exchange for college tuition in Mohave Valley, Arizona, and the larger meaning of a knocked-down telephone booth in Prairie Grove, Arkansas; a gathering of retired burlesque queens in Baraboo, Wisconsin, and a bullet fired through the living-room window of a black mayor in Greenwood, Louisiana; the economic struggles of a dairy farmer in Ferndale, California, and the execution by electric chair of a man in Nashville, Tennessee. The stand-alone dispatches fit together, jigsaw-like, to present a rarely seen and profoundly powerful portrait of American endurance that transcends politics and remains ever-present.

Bringing together the best of this ten-year odyssey with select images by award-winning Times photographers, including Ángel Franco, Nicole Bengiveno, and Todd Heisler, these narrative and visual snapshots of American life create a grand tapestry of our shared experience, capturing how our nation is at once flawed and exceptional, paralyzed and ascendant, as cruel and violent as it can be gentle and benevolent.

Release date: September 11, 2018

“Dan Barry gives dignity even to the darkest corners of the American experience. He is the closest thing we have to a contemporary Steinbeck.”
Colum McCann

“Dan Barry is an American treasure, and This Land is a beautifully conceived, essential book on American lives and places. His understanding and love of the American experience — small towns, fractured lives, beauty, suffering, and the physical landscape — is unparalleled. I’m grateful to him, and for him, for chronicling our lives, honoring our history, and recognizing our connection to each other.”
– Rosanne Cash

This Land reminds us that the greatest strength of the American character is America’s characters: men and women who are resilient, gracious, eccentric, world-weary, bright-eyed, funny, complex, tragic, surly and yes, even, kind.  Dan Barry proves once again that in his intelligent company, attention paid is its own reward.  He assures us, too, that eloquence, wit, and compassion – all the virtues we need now – have not been purged from American discourse and are alive and well in these pages.
Alice McDermott 

“There is something incrementally, and in the end almost infinitely heartbreaking and transformational, about Dan Barry’s haunting anthology… With a Dickensian breadth of curiosity and compassion, Barry has been determined to shadow and record a decade in the quotidian flow of national life-events that are all the more indelible, mysterious, and uncanny for their specificity.”
–Ric Burns

With this Dickensian tale from America’s heartland, New York Times writer and columnist Dan Barry tells the harrowing yet uplifting story of the exploitation and abuse of a resilient group of men with intellectual disability, and the heroic efforts of those who helped them to find justice and reclaim their lives.


“This Land” Reading

September 13th  7:30 pm

NYU’s Glucksman Ireland House Presents:
Thursday, September 20th, 7 pm.

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