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James Gentry
William Allen White School of Journalism & Mass Communications
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Investigative reporter will discuss 'Betrayal' at KU

Tue, 03/05/2013

LAWRENCE — Two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter James B. Steele will present a lecture on his book, “Betrayal of the American Dream,” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, in Woodruff Auditorium of the Kansas Union at the University of Kansas. He will sign copies of the book afterward. The event is being presented by Student Union Activities.

Steele and his reporting partner Donald L. Barlett have worked together for more than four decades and won scores of national journalism awards. In addition to the two Pulitzers, they have won two National Magazine Awards, making them the first journalists in history to win both the Pulitzer for newspaper work and its magazine equivalent. Barlett and Steele, who are now contributing editors at Vanity Fair magazine, also have written eight books.

Writing of “The Betrayal of the American Dream,” The New York Times Book Review said, “Barlett and Steele… have some intelligent things to say about the unfairness and impenetrability of the American tax code, which favors the wealthy and allows dangerous accounting for corporate pension liabilities…. The book is strongest, and most useful, when it recounts the poignant stories of workers left out in the cold, chilling examples of exactly how far members of the middle class have fallen. The book will undoubtedly make you angry.” 

The book has 4 ½ stars on the Amazon rating system and was a New York Times best-seller.

The Washington Journalism Review has said of Barlett and Steele that “they are almost certainly the best team in the history of investigative reporting.” James H. Dygert, in his book, “The Investigative Journalist: Folk Heroes of a New Era,” described them as “perhaps the most systematic and thorough investigative reporting team in the United States.”

And Steve Weinberg, in the book “Investigative Reporting,” wrote that “(Barlett and Steele) believe people really should be treated equally, that the playing field should be level, that government should not favor one group over another, that private-sector entities should be watched as closely as the public sector.”

In 1972, Barlett and Steele pioneered in the use of reporting methods now standard in the profession when they used a computer to analyze more than 1,000 cases of violent crime in Philadelphia. The resulting series, “Crime and Injustice,” was the largest computer-assisted project of its time and was widely replicated by other journalists for years afterward.

Their 1992 book, “America: What Went Wrong,” was a New York Times best-seller.

 



Happy Kansas Day, Kansans! We caught sunflowers standing tall at the Grinter Family Farms just outside Lawrence last fall. You may wonder how the sunflower came to be the State flower in 1903 and we found an excerpt from Kansas legislation: Whereas, Kansas has a native wild flower common throughout her borders, hardy and conspicuous, of definite, unvarying and striking shape, easily sketched, moulded, and carved, having armorial capacities, ideally adapted for artistic reproduction, with its strong, distinct disk and its golden circle of clear glowing rays -- a flower that a child can draw on a slate, a woman can work in silk, or a man can carve on stone or fashion in clay; and Whereas, This flower has to all Kansans a historic symbolism which speaks of frontier days, winding trails, pathless prairies, and is full of the life and glory of the past, the pride of the present, and richly emblematic of the majesty of a golden future, and is a flower which has given Kansas the world-wide name, "the sunflower state"... Be it enacted ... that the helianthus or wild native sunflower is ... designated ... the state flower and floral emblem of the state of Kansas.

Have family visiting Lawrence? #exploreKU and take them to the @KUnhm like @ChrisCanDesign did. http://t.co/PTDSdpSakh
Explore KU: The Bells of Mount Oread KU’s Campanile, a 120-foot-tall timepiece that tolls automatically on the hour and quarter-hour, not only sounded in the 2015 New Year at midnight with 12 mighty gongs, but also regularly rings up memories for many Jayhawks – the 277 faculty and students who gave their lives during World War II, the graduates who walk through its doors at commencement, and aspiring students who have strolled through the Lawrence campus. (See http://bit.ly/1xjjwJj). For nearly 60 years, KU’s 53-bell carillon has been tolling the sounds of peace and serenity across Mount Oread since it was installed in June 1955 inside the landmark World War II Memorial Campanile, which was dedicated in 1951. (See http://bit.ly/1BoL9jv) The carillon is also a four-octave musical instrument, which is played with a giant keyboard and foot pedals. University Carillonneur Elizabeth Egber-Berghout (http://bit.ly/14fiBPl), associate professor of carillon and organ, climbs 77 steps up a spiral staircase in the bell tower to perform recitals several times a month.


One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
26 prestigious Rhodes Scholars — more than all other Kansas colleges combined
Nearly $290 million in financial aid annually
46 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
—ALA
23rd nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets," Military Times