Author and social activist Barbara Ehrenreich to speak at Binghamton University


       Author and social activist Barbara Ehrenreich will speak at 4 p.m. Friday, September 7, in the Watters Theater of the Fine Arts building, located on the Binghamton University campus.  Her talk, titled "Dancing in the Streets: The Human Need to Party," is free and open to the public.

       Ehrenreich, whose most recent book is titled Dancing in the Streets: A History of Collective Joy, explores the human need for public celebration – and why we need to fulfill it.  According to Ehrenreich, since prehistoric times, people all over the world have engaged in rituals and festivities involving music, dancing, face-painting, feasting and often drinking. But during the last few centuries, that joyous tradition has been suppressed, leaving us with few opportunities for public celebration.

       Ehrenreich is one of America’s foremost social commentators and cultural historians. Her 18 books include For Her Own Good: Two Centuries of the Experts Advice on Women, Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America, and Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream.  Her ongoing social activism includes the newly created United Professionals for “unemployed, underemployed, and anxiously employed white collar workers.”

       She has received numerous awards and grants, including the Sydney Hillman Award for Journalism, a Ford Foundation Award for Humanistic Perspectives on Contemporary Society, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a grant for Research and Writing from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

       For more about her work, visit For more information about the talk, contact David Sloan Wilson of the Evolutionary Studies Program at

Last Updated: 9/17/13