The truth is malleable, according to journalist Brooke Gladstone. In her new book The Trouble With Reality: A Rumination on Moral panic In Our Time Gladstone analyzes the methods deployed in the media to twist our perceptions by preying on stereotypes and subjectivity. She takes Town Hall’s stage to reveal deceptive patterns she observes in the press and (she argues) in organizations such as the Trump administration. Gladstone will be joined in conversation with 25-year media veteran Jennifer Strachan, KUOW’s Chief Content Officer. Together they’ll deconstruct these techniques, citing writers such as Hannah Arendt, Philip K. Dick, and Jonathan Swift to bring us an informed look at reality-distorting strategies straight out of the authoritarian playbook. With bracing candor, Gladstone and Strachan outline how we can reaffirm our belief in reality and offer hope for meaningful action, a time-tested treatment for moral panic, and the inevitable reckoning.
Brooke Gladstone is the senior editor of the NPR radio shows All Things Considered and Weekend Edition, and co-host and editor of the Peabody Award-winning radio show and podcast On the Media. She is also the author of the nonfiction graphic novel The Influencing Machine.
Jennifer Strachan is KUOW’s Chief Content Officer, with experience in television and radio news, long-form documentary, and series production. She is an Emmy award-winning executive producer who has worked in commercial and public media organizations large and small, including KQED in San Francisco and NPR.
Presented by Town Hall Seattle in partnership with KUOW as part of the Civics series.