Campus News

‘Hillbilly Elegy’ selected as 2017-’18 Go Big Read book

Next year's Go Big Read book will be "Hillbilly Elegy" by J.D. Vance.

Image By: Courtesy of UW-Madison

“Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis” is the 2017-’18 selection for Go Big Read, the university announced in a release Tuesday.

The New York Times bestseller—written by J.D. Vance—details the author’s upbringing and struggle with class and social problems in the Rust Belt of Ohio, as well as in Appalachian town in Kentucky. Vance said he wrote the book because he wanted people to understand the lives of the poor and the psychological impact growing up in poverty has on children.

“The point [of the Go Big Read initiative] is to generate a lively conversation about a set of important issues, about which people can agree or disagree,” Chancellor Rebecca Blank said in the release. “In fact, we hope this will generate a conversation of that sort, which leads people to think more about the social and economic and political issues raised in the book.”

Copies of the book will distributed to first-year students attending the Chancellor’s Convocation for New Students, as well as to students using the book in class, according to the statement.

“Hillbilly Elegy” is the ninth selection of the Chancellor’s Go Big Read initiative.

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