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Dreamland, A lecture by award-winning author: Sam Quinones

Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at 7:30pm to 9:00pm

Kennedy Hall, Call Auditorium

Sam Quinones is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist and author of three books of narrative nonfiction. His latest book is Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic (Bloomsbury, 2015), for which he traveled across the United States. A reporter with the L.A. Times for ten years, Mr. Quinones frequently covered issues concerning immigration, gangs, drug trafficking, and the border.

Dreamland recounts twin stories of drug marketing in the 21st Century: A pharmaceutical corporation flogs its legal new opiate prescription painkiller as non-addictive. Meanwhile, immigrants from a small town in Nayarit, Mexico devise a method for retailing black-tar heroin like pizza in the US, and take that system nationwide, riding a wave of addiction to prescription pills from coast to coast. The collision of those two forces has led to America's deadliest drug scourge in modern times.

Dreamland won a National Book Critics Circle award for the Best Nonfiction Book of 2015. It was also selected as one of the Best Books of 2015 by numerous groups including,, Buzzfeed, Boston Globe, and in the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg Business by Nobel economics laureate, Prof. Angus Deaton, of Princeton University.

Q & A Session: Following the presentation, a brief response will be offered by Shannon Monnat, Lerner Chair for Public Health Promotion and Associate Professor of Sociology at the Maxwell School at Syracuse University. Professor Monnat will also moderate a Q-n-A session with the audience.

Sponsorship: This lecture is supported by a gift from Jennifer Koen-Horowitz ’93 and Mark Horowitz. It is co-sponsored by the College of Human Ecology, the Department of Policy Analysis and Management, the Sloan Program in Health Administration, and the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs.

Cornell University is committed to providing universal access to all of our events. Contact Jennifer Davis at to request disability accommodations. Advance notice is necessary to arrange for some accessibility needs.

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Cornell Institute for Public Affairs, Policy Analysis and Management




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Jennifer R. Davis

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Sam Quinones

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Author, Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic

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Contact Jennifer R. Davis,, to request disability accomodations.

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