Undercover Reporting: with Ted Conover

Wednesday 13 February, 2013
6 - 8pm, $0/Rsvp

NYU, The Humanities Initiative
20 Cooper Square, Floor 5

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Brooke Kroeger (Professor, Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute) speaks on her latest book, Undercover Reporting: The Truth About Deception (Northwestern University Press, 2012), and its companion database, which chronicles undercover journalism dating back to the 1800s. With discussant Ted Conover (Professor, Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute). In Undercover Reporting, Kroeger posits that this type of journalism is not separate from the profession’s conventional practices but, rather, embodies some of its most important tenets—the ability to extract significant information or to create indelible, real-time descriptions of hard-to-penetrate institutions or social situations that deserve the public’s attention. The Columbia Journalism Review writes that the book serves to, "polish undercover’s tarnished image and restore it to the place of respect (or semi-respect) it once enjoyed...Undercover Reporting intends to provoke its readers, and it did me".

Brooke Kroeger directs Global and Joint Program Studies and is the faculty liaison for The Local East Village, the collaborative community news and information site of NYU Journalism and the New York Times. She was department chair from 2005-2011 and the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute’s inaugural director from 2008-2011.

Her three previous books are Passing: When People Can't Be Who They Are (Fall 2003), Fannie: The Talent for Success of Writer Fannie Hurst (1999) and Nellie Bly: Daredevil, Reporter, Feminist (1994). As a journalist, she worked for Newsday, serving as UN Correspondent and as a deputy metropolitan editor for New York Newsday. This followed an eight-year stint overseas in the Scripps Howard days of United Press International with postings in Chicago, Brussels, London and Tel Aviv. She was Tel Aviv bureau chief for three years before returning to London to serve as the agency's chief editor for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. She started with the wire service in its Chicago bureau, and over the course of four years, wrote about everything from local and state politics to sports. Her freelanced work has appeared in various magazines as well as in the New York Times, Newsday, and the Los Angeles Times Book Review. She was the principal consultant for the PBS documentary on Nellie Bly for “The American Experience: Around the World in 72 Days." Reviews of her books and a selection of her work can be viewed on her website.

Ted Conover is the author of five books, most recently The Routes of Man, about roads, and Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing, an account of his ten months spent working as a corrections officer at New York's Sing Sing Prison. Newjack won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2001 and was finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His other books are Whiteout: Lost in Aspen, Coyotes: A Journey Across Borders With America's Illegal Migrants, and Rolling Nowhere: Riding the Rails With America's Hoboes. A summa cum laude graduate of Amherst College, Conover spent two years at Cambridge University as a Marshall Scholar. In 2001, he received an honorary doctorate from Amherst and in 2003, a Guggenheim Fellowship. In recent years he has taught at the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the University of Oregon. He contributes to publications including The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, National Geographic, Virginia Quarterly Review, and many others.
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