Big Ideas Night with David Brooks

David Brooks on THE ROAD TO CHARACTER and Humility

May 20, 2015 in New York City

Random House’s Big Ideas Night series– held at the publisher’s flagship offices in Manhattan– offers a forum for thought-provoking conversations between writers and editors on the topics of politics, world affairs, technology, fashion, philanthropy and more. These focused dialogues offer exclusive access for guests to dive deeper into a recently released book with fellow readers, and engage directly with the innovators behind it.

Event Details

What was Included

  • Access to keynote conversation
  • Meet & Greet with David Brooks
  • Signed copy of THE ROAD TO CHARACTER
  • Wine, hors d’oeuvres and dessert

Date & Time

May 20, 2015
6:30pm to 9:00pm


New York City

Random House, 1745 Broadway


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6:30 – 7:00 PM – Check-in & Refreshments
7:00 – 8:00 PM – Author Talk with Audience Q&A
8:00 – 9:00 PM – Book signing, Drinks & Dessert

Random House’s inaugural Big Ideas Night will debut with David Brooks, op-ed columnist for the New York Times and bestselling author of The Social Animal and Bobos in Paradise. This Big Ideas Night will focus on humility, the central theme of Brooks’s most powerful and revolutionary book yet, THE ROAD TO CHARACTER.

In today’s culture of achievement, the drive for external success and attention is so fierce there's little time to cultivate inner depth. We're taught to be assertive, to master skills, to broadcast our brand, to get likes, to get followers. We’ve become a self-preoccupied society; and the noise, the fast and shallow communications, makes it hard to hear the quiet voices that steer us beyond our immediate needs. How did we become a culture of the Big Me? When did we start putting our resume virtues above our eulogy virtues?

In an elegant weaving of politics, spirituality and psychology, Brooks explores the cultural movements that put us out of balance, he cites some of history’s greatest thinkers and leaders—from St. Augustine and Dorothy Day to Dwight Eisenhower and Samuel Johnson—and how they were able to face their weaknesses and transcend their flaws, and he shows how we are all stumblers, and the beauty and meaning of life is in the stumbling.  Eye-opening and deeply personal, THE ROAD TO CHARACTER proves that it is how we want to be remembered – and not what we put on our resumes – that truly matters.

Featured Author

DAVID BROOKS writes an op-ed column for The New York Times, teaches at Yale University, and appears regularly on PBS NewsHour, NPR’s All Things Considered, and NBC’s Meet the Press. He is the author of Bobos in Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There; On Paradise Drive: How We Live Now (And Always Have) in the Future Tense; The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character, and Achievement; and THE ROAD TO CHARACTER, on sale April 14.