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The Forgotten: How the People of One Pennsylvania County Elected Donald Trump and Changed America

The Forgotten: How the People of One Pennsylvania County Elected Donald Trump and Changed America

by Ben Bradlee Jr.


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The people of Luzerne County, Pennsylvania voted Democratic for decades, until Donald Trump flipped it in 2016. What happened?

Named one of the "juiciest political books to come in 2018" by Entertainment Weekly.

In The Forgotten, Ben Bradlee Jr. reports on how voters in Luzerne County, a pivotal county in a crucial swing state, came to feel like strangers in their own land - marginalized by flat or falling wages, rapid demographic change, and a liberal culture that mocks their faith and patriotism.

Fundamentally rural and struggling with changing demographics and limited opportunity, Luzerne County can be seen as a microcosm of the nation. In The Forgotten, Trump voters speak for themselves, explaining how they felt others were 'cutting in line' and that the federal government was taking too much money from the employed and giving it to the idle. The loss of breadwinner status, and more importantly, the loss of dignity, primed them for a candidate like Donald Trump.

The political facts of a divided America are stark, but the stories of the men, women and families in The Forgotten offer a kaleidoscopic and fascinating portrait of the complex on-the-ground political reality of America today.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780316515733
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication date: 10/02/2018
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

Ben Bradlee Jr. is the author of the critically acclaimed The Kid: The Immortal Life of Ted Williams (2013) among other books. Bradlee spent 25 years with The Boston Globe as a reporter and editor. As deputy managing editor, he oversaw the Globe's Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church from July 2001 to August 2002. Bradlee lives with his wife outside Boston.

What People are Saying About This

Katherine Tsanoff Brown Chair in Humanities and Professor of History at Rice University and author of Cronkite - Douglas Brinkley

"Ben Bradlee's The Forgotten is an eyeopening look at the American electorate in the Age of Trump. By honing in on a singular Pennsylvania county Bradlee brilliantly dissects the myriad of reasons behind our Great Political Divide. A must read!"

Seymour M. Hersh

"This is a book that should be absorbed by the millions of Democrats who still cannot understand how Donald Trump won in 2016. Bradlee did what the brightest editors in New York and California did not assign their reporters to do -- he spent months talking to white working class Americans in a rural county in Pennsylvania -- a nominally blue state -- and learned the hard way, on the job, that Trump was a far more viable candidate than the elite thought. This is a real reporter's book."

Washington Post columnist - George F. Will

“Pennsylvania has long fancied itself "the keystone state" -- the piece that holds together the arch of the nation. In 2016, when the nation came apart in disturbing ways, this state's role was especially revealing. Ben Bradlee Jr.'s meticulous reporting illuminates the riveting story of how people who felt forgotten discovered how to get the nation's attention.”

Publisher of The Nation - Katrina vanden Heuvel

“The Forgotten is a riveting and empathetic portrait of a cross-section of (mostly disillusioned) people of Luzerne County, PA., which arguably gave Trump that state —and the Presidency. As we near the 2018 midterms, which will largely be a referendum on the Trump Presidency and the future of our nation, Ben Bradlee Jr.’s “listening -reporting” of the stories of those whose votes shook this country in 2016 offers complex, sobering and important lessons for the future of our country."

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