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Thomas Friedman's 'Hot, Flat and Crowded' Selected for One Book One Northwestern

June 4, 2009 | by Alan K. Cubbage

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Thomas L. Friedman’s best-selling book, “Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution -- and How It Can Renew America,” has been chosen for One Book One Northwestern for the next academic year.

This summer all new, incoming undergraduate students will receive a free copy of the book, which amazon.com described as “vivid” and “entertaining.” During the upcoming academic year students will have the opportunity to engage in online discussions. The One Book project also will sponsor free and public lectures and other events related to the topics of energy and sustainability.

Friedman will give a speech at the inauguration of Northwestern’s new president, Morton O. Schapiro, on Oct. 9. Friedman is a three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the New York Times and a best-selling author. His books include “The World is Flat” and “From Beirut to Jerusalem.”

Northwestern’s One Book project, which will be coordinated by Bridget Calendo in the Initiative for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern (ISEN) with input from the whole community, aims to stimulate a common conversation across a diverse campus and university.

“Thomas Friedman lays out clearly the challenges that we face in the areas of sustainable energy use and production in an era of rapid population growth and increased globalization. His book should provide a wonderful springboard for in-depth discussions on these and related topics across the campus,” said David Dunand, ISEN co-director and James and Margie Krebs Professor of Materials Science and Engineering.

Mark Ratner, co-director of ISEN and the Lawrence B. Dumas Distinguished University Professor, said, “The premise of the One Book One Northwestern program is to pick a theme of current societal significance and to explore it in as many ways as possible. Energy and sustainability together provide perhaps the grand challenge to society at the beginning of the 21st century. Northwestern is engaging it forcefully and broadly. This choice of a book will quicken the intellectual and activist pulse at the University throughout next year -- and it should be fun. We look forward to rock paintings and discussions, performance and arguments, social service and engineering and architecture and debates.”

For information on One Book activities for the upcoming academic year, please contact Bridget Calendo at isen@northwestern.edu or 847-467-1972.

Watch the video below about last year's One Book program, when the selected book was David Quammen’s 2006 Darwin biography, “The Reluctant Mr. Darwin: An Intimate Portrait of Charles Darwin and the Making of His Theory of Evolution.”

Video by Matt Paolelli

Topics: Campus Life