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2016-17 Campus Read

Book cover of The Road to CharacterThe Road to Character

By David Brooks

In The Road to Character, author David Brooks focuses on the deeper values that should inform our lives. Responding to what he calls the culture of the Big Me, which emphasizes external success, Brooks challenges us, and himself, to rebalance the scales between our “résumé virtues”—achieving wealth, fame, and status—and our “eulogy virtues,” those that exist at the core of our being: kindness, bravery, honesty, or faithfulness, focusing on what kind of relationships we have formed.

Looking to some of the world’s greatest thinkers and inspiring leaders, Brooks explores how, through internal struggle and a sense of their own limitations, they have built a strong inner character. Labor activist Frances Perkins understood the need to suppress parts of herself so that she could be an instrument in a larger cause. Dwight Eisenhower organized his life not around impulsive self-expression but considered self-restraint. Dorothy Day, a devout Catholic convert and champion of the poor, learned as a young woman the vocabulary of simplicity and surrender. Civil rights pioneers A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin learned reticence and the logic of self-discipline, the need to distrust oneself even while waging a noble crusade.

Blending psychology, politics, spirituality, and confessional, The Road to Character provides an opportunity for us to rethink our priorities, and strive to build rich inner lives marked by humility and moral depth.

Learn more about The Road to Character by visiting the Share the Road website


Campus Read Events

David Brooks Campus Visit

Author talk, free and open to the public.

  • Date: Tuesday, September 27, 2016
  • Time: 7:00p – 8:00p
  • Location: Morrison Center

Campus Read Kick-Off Event

Join the campus community in celebrating the launch of this year’s book.

  • Date: Tuesday, April 12, 2016
  • Time: 2:00p – 3:00p
  • Location: Albertsons Library

Library Research Guide

Albertsons Library has created resources to assist in exploration of this book.

View the LibGuide for The Road to Character

Find the traveler on the road to character! Locate the plush toy hidden inside the library and win a prize (ask a Librarian how).