The Ohio State University at Newark

One Book, One Community: Sundown Towns Virtual Book Discussion with the Author

December 30, 2020

Members of the community are invited to participate in One Book, One Community, a free community book club hosted by The Ohio State University at Newark and Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) in partnership with the public library systems of Licking County. Participants will read Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism by James W. Loewen and virtually meet with the author for a discussion. The event will be held via Zoom on Friday, February 19, 3-4 p.m.

Complimentary copies of the book are available to the first 100 registrants who reside in Licking County. Books may be picked up at any of the public libraries in Licking County, or participants may request that a copy be mailed to their home address. A limited number of free e-books and e-audio books are available to download through any of the public libraries in Licking County. Register to attend this virtual event at any public library in Licking County or contact Laura Walsh at 740.364.9514 or

One Book, One Community is made possible through the Melissa Warner Bow endowed fund. The Licking County Foundation and the United Way of Licking County are also sponsoring the event. Sundown Towns is on this year's Common Reading List for all first-year students at Ohio State Newark.

In this groundbreaking work, sociologist James W. Loewen, bestselling author of Lies My Teacher Told Me, brings to light decades of hidden racial exclusion in America. The publisher's website calls Sundown Towns a provocative, sweeping analysis of American residential patterns in which Loewen uncovers the thousands of "sundown towns" — almost exclusively white towns where it was an unspoken rule that Black residents were not welcome — that cropped up throughout the twentieth century, most of them located outside of the South.

James W. Loewen has won the American Book Award, the Oliver Cromwell Cox Award for Distinguished Anti-Racist Scholarship, the Spirit of America Award from the National Council for the Social Studies and the Gustavus Myers Outstanding Book Award. He is professor emeritus of sociology at the University of Vermont and lives in Washington, DC.

Central Ohio Technical College and The Ohio State University at Newark have forged an outstanding array of educational opportunities for the central Ohio region and beyond. This partnership is viewed as a model for higher education in the state of Ohio. At Central Ohio Technical College, students gain hands-on, applicable experience to begin working in the field, or to transfer those credits toward a bachelor's degree program. The Ohio State University at Newark offers an academic environment that's inclusive of diversity, challenging but supportive with world-renowned professors and access to Ohio State's more than 200 majors.