The Power of Strangers: The Benefits of Connecting in a Suspicious World

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Jun 24 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm


Jun 24
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
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Join us in the Athenaeum Garden for our first summer salon!

Discover “The Power of Strangers” as Joe Keohane takes us on a journey to reveal what happens when we bridge the distance between us and people we don’t know.

In our cities, we stand in silence at the pharmacy and in check-out lines at the grocery store, distracted by our phones, barely acknowledging one another, even as rates of loneliness skyrocket. Online, we retreat into ideological silos reinforced by algorithms designed to serve us only familiar ideas and like-minded users. But what if strangers—so often blamed for our problems—are the solution?

To research his book, The Power of Strangers, Keohane gathered practical tips from experts on how to talk to strangers, and tried them out himself in the wild, to awkward, entertaining, and frequently poignant effect. Ultimately, he discovered that talking to strangers isn’t just a way to live; it’s a way to survive.

Joe Keohane is a veteran journalist who has worked as an editor at Medium, Esquire, Entrepreneur, and Hemispheres. His writing—on everything from politics, to travel, to social science, business, and technology—has appeared in New York magazine, The Boston Globe, The New Yorker, Wired, Boston magazine, and The New Republic. Born in the Boston area, he currently resides in New York City with his wife and daughter. The Power of Strangers is his first book.

This event will be outdoors in the garden. Please bring a folding lawn chair if you have one.

Tickets: Free to Athenaeum Members, $15 Non-members

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