LITERATURE + LECTURES
Tom Vanderbilt: book signing and discussion
September 15, 2009
Brazos Bookstore is pleased to present Tom Vanderbilt, who signs and discusses his book, Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (And What It Says About Us).
In this brilliant, lively, and eye-opening investigation, Tom Vanderbilt examines the perceptual limits and cognitive underpinnings that make us worse drivers than we think we are. He demonstrates why plans to protect pedestrians from cars often lead to more accidents. He uncovers who is more likely to honk at whom, and why. He explains why traffic jams form, outlines the unintended consequences of our quest for safety, and even identifies the most common mistake drivers make in parking lots.
Traffic, a New York Times Notable Book and one of the Best Books of the Year according to The Washington Post, The Cleveland Plain-Dealer, and Rocky Mountain News, is about more than driving: it's about human nature. It will change the way we see ourselves and the world around us, and it may even make us better drivers.
Tom Vanderbilt writes on design, technology, science, and culture, among other subjects, for many publications, including Wired, Slate, The London Review of Books, Gourmet, The Wall Street Journal, Men’s Vogue, Artforum, The Wilson Quarterly, Travel and Leisure, Rolling Stone, The New York Times Magazine,Cabinet, Metropolis, and Popular Science. He is contributing editor to the design magazines I.D. and Print, and contributing writer of the popular blog Design Observer.
His most recent book is the New York Times bestseller Traffic:Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us), published by Alfred A. Knopf in the U.S. and Canada, Penguin in the U.K. and territories, and a number of other publishers in other countries. He is also the author of two previous books: Survival City: Adventures Among the Ruins of Atomic America (Princeton Architectural Press, 2002), an offbeat architectural travelogue of the nation’s secret Cold War past; and The Sneaker Book (The New Press, 1998), a cultural history of the athletic shoe (published in Italian and Swedish editions). His early writings for The Baffler have been collected in two anthologies, Commodify Your Dissent and Boob Jubilee (W.W. Norton, eds. Thomas Frank and Matthew Weiland), and he has also contributed essays to a number of books, including New York Stories: The Best of the City Section of the New York Times (New York University Press); Supercade: The Visual History of the Video Game Age (The MIT Press), Else/Where: Mapping (The University of Minnesota Press, 2006),Quonset Hut: Metal Living for a Modern Age (Princeton Architectural Press, 2005), and The World and the Wild (The University of Arizona Press).
He has given lectures at colleges and business conferences, and has appeared on a wide variety of radio and television programs around the world, including NBC’s Today Show, ABC News’Nightline, NPR’s Morning Edition, Fresh Air with Teri Gross, the BBC’s World Service and The One Show, Fox Business, and CNN’s Business Today, among many others.
He lives in Brooklyn and drives a 2001 Volvo V40. Check out his "companion blog" to the book: How We Drive.