Barbara Ehrenreich at Willamette University

Barbara Ehrenreich, journalist and the author of the million-copy bestseller Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America and the New York Times bestseller Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream, will deliver the fall Atkinson Lecture at Willamette University Thursday, Oct. 18, at 8 p.m. in Smith Auditorium.

Tickets for the campus community are available beginning Oct. 1. The first ticket is free with a Willamette ID and subsequent tickets are $10 each. Tickets for the general public are $10 at the Information Desk in University Center beginning Oct. 12.

Ehrenreich's articles, reviews, essays and humor have appeared in a range of national publications, including The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post Magazine, Ms., Esquire, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, The Nation and newspapers throughout the world.

In 2004, she received the Nation Institute Puffin Foundation Prize for Creative Citizenship, given annually to an American who challenges the status quo "through distinctive, courageous, imaginative, socially responsible work of significance." Dancing in the Streets carries on this tradition by uncovering the origins of communal celebration in human biology and culture and by reminding us of this crucial part of our distinctively human heritage.

Of her new book, Ehrenreich says, "It's a sweeping book about festivities and ecstatic rituals: their roots in human evolution and the history of their repression by elites from ancient times to the present. I'm now researching for a book on what I call ‘the cult of cheerfulness,' which requires Americans to ‘think positively' rather than to take positive action for change."

A book signing in Smith will follow her lecture.