RICHLAND — Jennifer Sherman, assistant professor of sociology at WSU Tri-Cities, will speak on the effects of extreme and unexpected poverty on a rural town at noon on Wednesday, Feb. 3 in the WSU Tri-Cities East Auditorium, 2710 University Drive.
 
Admission is free and open to the public.
 
The lecture, as well as the title of Sherman’s book recently published by the University of Minnesota Press,is entitled “Those Who Work, Those Who Don’t: Poverty, Morality and Family in Rural America.”
 
“Those Who Work, Those Who Don’t” is an empathic firsthand account of the rural poor. Sherman spent a year living and conducting research in a remote logging town in Northern California that was directly affected by the 1990 ruling to list the northern spotted owl as a threatened species. As the townspeople experienced unemployment, depleted savings, and changing gender roles, Sherman discovered that moral values — such as work ethic — become a way for the poor to maintain dignity when faced with economic ruin.
 
Sherman’s lecture is part of the WSU Tri-Cities Liberal Arts Series of events, sponsored by the Richland Arts Commission in celebration of the 20th anniversary as a WSU campus.