Eli Saslow to Speak About his Book "Rising Out of Hatred" at UE on November 7

Posted: Monday, October 28, 2019

Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Eli Saslow will speak at the University of Evansville on November 7, at 7:00 p.m., in Eykamp Hall, Ridgway Center. Saslow will discuss his book Rising Out of Hatred, the story of how former white nationalist leader Derek Black changed his heart, mind, and political viewpoints.

The event is free and open to the public and sponsored by the University of Evansville Honors Program, Student Government Association, and the Office of Academic Affairs. The book, Rising Out of Hatred, was the common read for UE's Honors Program freshmen this year. No RSVP is required for this event.

Derek Black might be termed white nationalist royalty. His father, Don Black, launched Stormfront, the first major white supremacist website; his mother was once married to former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke, who was Derek's godfather and mentor from birth. Derek was an elected politician at 19, with his own daily radio show on which he urged white nationalists to "infiltrate" the American political system to prevent what he termed "white genocide." But when Derek chose to attend a tiny liberal arts college,
his ideological foundations began to crack.

A testament to the power of education to broaden minds and spark conversations, Rising Out of Hatred immerses us in Derek's world-as challenging, even uncomfortable, as we might find that-and creates, in the words of the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, "a relationship between reader and story." At once political and intensely personal, Rising explains how our nation arrived at this polarizing moment and suggests that outspoken communication and active listening have the power to change lives. Yale law professor Amy Chua called Rising Out of Hatred "a must-read for anyone interested in understanding and overcoming hate."

Salslow is a longtime staff writer for The Washington Post, where he was initially a sportswriter. He has reported for 42 states and six countries. He covered the 2008 presidential campaign as well as President Obama's life in the White House. Four of his stories have been anthologized in Best American Sports Writing and he is an occasional contributor to ESPN The Magazine.

Saslow won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in Explanatory Reporting for a series of stories about food stamps and food insecurity in the United States. Collected into the book American Hunger, his stories were praised as "unsettling and nuanced...forcing readers to grapple with issues of poverty and dependency." Saslow was also named one of three finalists for the Pulitzer Prize in Feature Writing in 2013, 2016 and 2017. His stories in The Washington Post have been recognized with George Pol Award, a PEN Literary Award, a James Beard Award, and other honors.

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