State of the Union

Groundbreaking changes are in motion in these challenging times. While the global Covid-19 pandemic appears to get worse, United States residents elect a new leader in a few weeks’ time. A new book promises a broad panorama view on the strongly different opinions and ways of life of Americans.

“USA. Stimmen aus einem gespaltenen Land” by Austrian journalists Hannelore Veit and David Kriegleder puts the spotlight on 18 individuals and their families. The correspondents of broadcasting corporation ORF portray a staunch supporter of liberal gun laws, an Occupy Wall Street tour guide and the head of a committee organising fundraising dinners at Donald Trump’s estate in Florida.

While some interviewees are disgusted by Trump’s erratic decisions and the way he thrives on controversy, others praise him as a brutally honest and hardworking deal maker.

The owner of an organic farm describes how she was forced to reinvent herself during the lockdown. The chapter on a Sober House manager offers just a glimpse on the severe prescription drug crisis in the country. The story of the reporters’ cameraman could help raising awareness for the difficult circumstances of black people, regardless of their education and personal background.

With literally every German and Austrian foreign correspondent releasing a book, it has to be seen whether this one will stand the test of time. Klaus Scherer (“Wahnsinn Amerika. Innenansichten einer Weltmacht”), Ingo Zamperoni (“Fremdes Land Amerika. Warum wir unser Verhältnis zu den USA neu bewerten müssen”) and Jan Philipp Burghardt (“Ausgeträumt, Amerika? Unterwegs in einem gespaltenem Land”) – just to name a few – have all done a fine job. The publication of Veit and Kriegleder has somehow benefited from the complex crisis of 2020.

USA. Stimmen aus einem gespaltenen Land
By Hannelore Veit & David Kriegleder
Published by Residenz Verlag (www.residenzverlag.at)

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