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The Commonwealth Club

110 The Embarcadero

San Francisco, CA 94105

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Adam Hochschild, Journalist; Lecturer, Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley; Author, Rebel Cinderella: From Rags to Riches to Radical, the Epic Journey of Rose Pastor Stokes

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation

Award-winning author Adam Hochschild has drawn on Rose Pastor Stokes’ diary, dueling memoirs, letters, newspaper accounts and government surveillance reports to unearth the rich, overlooked life of a social justice campaigner. Stokes played a dramatic role in the struggle for labor equality and women’s rights but is now forgotten. Rose Pastor arrived in New York City in 1903, a Jewish refugee from Russia who had worked in cigar factories since she was 11. Just two years later, she married James Graham Phelps Stokes, scion of a legendary New York high society family. Their union, of rich and poor, native-born and immigrant, Gentile and Jew, made them America’s most improbable couple, whose Socialist Party friends included Emma Goldman, Eugene V. Debs, John Reed, Margaret Sanger, Jack London and W.E.B. Du Bois. Stokes became a renowned radical orator, advocating for the rights of labor and in favor of birth control, earning her notoriety as “one of the dangerous influences of the country” from President Woodrow Wilson. But in a way no one foresaw, her too-short life would end in the same abject poverty with which it began.

Location: 110 The Embarcadero, Toni Rembe Rock Auditorium, San Francisco
Time: 5:30 p.m. check-in, 6 p.m. program, 7 p.m. book signing
MLF: Humanities
Program organizer: George Hammond
Notes: Photo from the National Archives and Records Administration (public domain)

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The Commonwealth Club

110 The Embarcadero

San Francisco, CA 94105

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No Refunds

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