October 6, 2005 – Sir Harold Evans

October 6, 2005

  • Social interaction
  • Discussion of current issues and events
  • And a lively conversation with our featured speaker

Sir Harold Evans
Editor at Large of The Week Magazine

They Made America:
A History of Innovation

“There has never been a history of America like Harold Evans’s long-awaited They Made America. With the verve and cogency that made his American Century an acclaimed bestseller, Evans tells the epic story of the men and women who made America over two centuries.

“The workshop revolutionaries who made our world have never had the attention afforded the political revolutionaries who founded this nation. But it was these innovators–in small-town attics and on the Mississippi, in Silicon Valley and the wheat fields of Kansas, in a black woman’s beauty parlor and a Dayton bicycle shop–who set America on a course to attain a standard of living unprecedented in the history of the world.

“The flourishing of America is the story of an inventive people with a mystic faith in technology, from the early settlers who used windmills as a way of getting water on the Great Plains to the electronic whiz kids of the Internet. Innovation, practical inventiveness, is the main force behind America’s preeminence. But there is more to this extraordinary history. Harold Evans traces how the innovators have time and again proved to be democratizers, driven not by greed but by an ambition to be remembered. They translated the nation’s political ideals into economic reality.

“Yet many of these heroic contributors have been lost to history. Who fought and fought to make banking available to the common people? Who opened the world of international air travel to the masses? Whose Internet triumph was based on egalitarian ideals? Who put cheap electricity into everyone’s home–and was pursued as a fugitive? Who gave everyman high-quality sound–and was driven to suicide?

“These innovators come forcefully to life in Evans’s astonishing dramatic narratives and in more than five hundred unforgettable photographs and illustrations…”

–from the flap of They Made America: From the Steam Engine to the Search Engine: Two Centuries of Innovators.

Sir Harold Evans, Editor at Large of The Week Magazine, is currently presenting the weekly BBC radio series “Letter from America,” which was previously hosted by Alistair Cooke.They Made America is his most recent book; before it, he wrote the best-seller The American Century.

They Made America was the basis of a four-part PBS series, produced by WGBH, makers of “The American Experience.” For the first installment in the series Evans was nominated for an award by the Writers’ Guild of America.

Evans was the President and Publisher of Random House Trade Group from 1990-1997. From 1997-1999 he was Editorial Director and Vice Chairman of U.S. News & World Report, the New York Daily NewsThe Atlantic Monthly and Fast Company, a position from which he resigned in January 2000 to devote himself full-time to major writing and television projects. (Evans remains a Contributing Editor at U.S. News & World Report.)

Sir Harold lives in New York City with his wife, Tina Brown, and their two children.

We gather at 7 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month and begin our organized meeting around 7:30. The featured speaker is normally introduced at about 8. The meeting continues until about 10.?Discussions are lively, but polite. Participation by attendees is highly encouraged.

General Society Library
20 West 44th St.
Between 5th & 6th avenues, near Grand Central Terminal

Subway: 4, 5, 6, 7 to Grand Central – 42nd St.,
B, D, F, V to 42nd St. – Sixth Ave., or
1, 2, 3, 9, N, Q, R, S, or W to Times Square – 42nd St.

Admission is free, and no reservation is necessary.

Junto focuses on libertarianism, Objectivism — the philosophy of Ayn Rand — and investing.


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