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Sun, Jun 02

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Folio: The Seattle Athenaeum

I Lived to Tell the World: Stories from Survivors of Holocaust, Genocide, and the Atrocities of War

Author Elizabeth Mehren in conversation with Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Richard Read

I Lived to Tell the World: Stories from Survivors of Holocaust, Genocide, and the Atrocities of War
I Lived to Tell the World: Stories from Survivors of Holocaust, Genocide, and the Atrocities of War

Time & Location

Jun 02, 2024, 3:00 PM – 5:30 PM PDT

Folio: The Seattle Athenaeum, 93 Pike St #307, Seattle, WA 98101, USA

About the Event

Folio: The Seattle Athenaeum is thrilled to welcome national correspondent and author Elizabeth Mehren for a timely and vital conversation about her new book I Lived to Tell the World: Stories from the Holocaust, Genocide, and the Atrocities of War. Elizabeth will be in conversation with two time Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Richard Read. Join us for a wine reception to conclude the evening. 

As Americans increasingly question how each of us fits into our nation's cultural tapestry, I Lived to Tell the World presents thirteen inspiring profiles of refugees who have settled in Oregon. They come from Rwanda, Myanmar, Bosnia, Syria, and more-different stories, different conflicts, but similar paths through loss and violence to a new, not always easy, life in the United States. The in-depth profiles are drawn from hours of interviews and oral histories; journalist Elizabeth Mehren worked collaboratively with the survivors to honor the complexity of their experiences and to ensure that the stories are told with, and not just about, them. Mehren also weaves in historical, cultural, and political context alongside these personal stories of resilience.

In the face of global cruelty and hatred, the courage and fortitude of these individuals illuminate the darkness. Their stories inspire readers to reflect on their own experiences and to view newcomers to America with renewed respect. As more states adopt Holocaust and genocide education curricula and as issues around refugees, immigration, and racial justice gain attention, I Lived to Tell the World highlights the purposeful lives led by these Oregonians despite their painful pasts. Their experiences not only humanize the atrocities often seen in headlines, but also convey a universal message of hope.

Elizabeth Mehren is a Portland-based writer, editor, and educator. After working at The Washington Post, she became a national correspondent for the Los Angeles Times and later spent a decade on the faculty at Boston University. Mehren earned undergraduate and graduate degrees at UC Berkeley and has written for national magazines, appeared on television and radio, and received awards for teaching and journalism. I Lived to Tell the World is her fifth book.

Richard Read was the Los Angeles Times bureau chief in Seattle, covering Washington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho, Alaska and Hawaii. A former Tokyo-based foreign correspondent, he won a Pulitzer Prize for a series that explained the Asian financial crisis by following a container of French fries from a Northwest farm to a Singapore McDonald’s. He served on a team that won the Pulitzer for Public Service for exposing U.S. immigration agency abuses. Born in Scotland and raised in Boston, he has reported from all seven continents. He retired in 2021.

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