Daily Distraction: Ohio author Brian Alexander discusses new book 'The Hospital'

The Ohio State Department of Sociology hosts the Lancaster native tonight for a health care discussion related to his recent book on a Bryan, Ohio, hospital

Joel Oliphint
Columbus Alive
“The Hospital: Life, Death, and Dollars in a Small American Town,” by Brian Alexander.

Previously, author and Lancaster, Ohio, native Brian Alexander examined the rise and fall of his Fairfield County hometown in Glass House: The 1% Economy and the Shattering of the All-American Town, which Kirkus Reviews described as "a devastating and illuminating book that shows how a city and a country got where they are and how difficult it can be to reverse course. ... Those mystified by the election of Donald Trump could well start here."

Earlier this year, Alexander returned with a new book, The Hospital: Life, Death, and Dollars in a Small American Town, which focuses on another nearby town, the northwestern Ohio city of Bryan. But this time Alexander zooms in on the local hospital. "By the end of The Hospital, you’ll be making signs to carry at the next Medicare for All march," wrote Mona Hanna-Attisha in a New York Times review. "With the stories of these characters — from patients and doctors to the C.E.O. — etched in your heart, Alexander will make you see that a healthier America will only be realized when we begin to look beyond the patients in front of us and prescribe solutions that lift people out of poverty, eliminate inequities and respect the dignity of all."

Today (Thursday, Oct. 7) at 6 p.m., Ohio State's Department of Sociology is hosting Alexander for a "Book Salon" event, which is free and open to the public in Room 006 inside the Ohio State Psychology Building (1835 Neil Ave.; masks are required inside all campus buildings). The 90-minute discussion will focus on "the social and economic forces shaping poor health in both Ohio and the nation, with particular attention to the role of the U.S. health care system."