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J. D. Vance

Hillbilly Elegy

Hillbilly Elegy

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A SUNDAY TIMES bestseller Waterstones nonfiction Book of the Month (June) A Time Magazine Top 10 Nonfiction Book of 2016 SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE the political book of the year Sunday Times You will not read a more important book about America this year Economist Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis-that of white working-class Americans. the decline of this group; a demographic of our country that has been slowly disintegrating over forty years; has been reported on with growing frequency and alarm; but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social; regional; and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck. the Vance family story begins hopefully in post-war America. J. D. s grandparents were dirt poor and in love; and moved north from Kentuckys Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. they raised a middle-class family; and eventually their grandchild (the author) would graduate from Yale Law School; a conventional marker of their success in achieving generational upward mobility. But as the family saga of Hillbilly Elegy plays out; we learn that this is only the short; superficial version. Vances grandparents; aunt; uncle; sister; and; most of all; his mother; struggled profoundly with the demands of their new middle-class life; and were never able to fully escape the legacy of abuse; alcoholism; poverty; and trauma so characteristic of their part of America. Vance piercingly shows how he himself still carries around the demons of their chaotic family history. A deeply moving memoir with its share of humour and vividly colourful figures; Hillbilly Elegy is the story of how upward mobility really feels. And it is an urgent and troubling meditation on the loss of the American dream for a large segment of this country.


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HarperCollins Publishers


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