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Steve Inskeep with Angie Coiro
January 14, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm PST$15 – $45
Michelle and Barack Obama. Ben Bradlee and Sally Quinn. John and Jackie Kennedy.
Every era has its power couples— teams of two wielding boundless social, political, and cultural influence. In Imperfect Union, NPR’s Steve Inskeep (Morning Edition, Up First, All Things Considered) has unearthed the life stories of one of America’s earliest power couples: John and Jessie Frémont. Theirs is the tale of an unexpected coupling that changed the shape of the nation: the refined daughter of a US senator wedding a penniless young man born out of wedlock. Through determination— and Jessie’s fierce promotion— John shot up the ladder. He became a celebrated wilderness explorer, bestselling writer, gallant army officer, and latter-day conquistador, who in 1846 began the United States’ takeover of California from Mexico. Jessie packaged and marketed it all.
Inskeep tells the story of a couple whose joint ambitions and talents intertwined with those of the nascent United States itself. Americans linked the Frémonts with not one but three great social movements of the time—westward settlement, women’s rights, and opposition to slavery. It’s a surprisingly modern story of ambition and fame; they lived in a time of globalization, technological disruption, and divisive politics that foreshadowed our own. The Frémonts’ adventures amount to nothing less than a tour of the early American soul.
Kepler’s Literary Foundation invites you to join us for this nationally admired journalist in an illuminating conversation with the Bay Area’s own award-winning radio personality, Angie Coiro.