By: Pranam Dey
This interview was conducted before J.D. Vance spoke to the Buckley Program and its guests at the Omni Hotel in New Haven, CT on February 1st, 2017. The transcript has been condensed and lightly edited from a longer interview.
J.D. Vance grew up in the Rust Belt city of Middletown, Ohio, and the Appalachian town of Jackson, Kentucky. He enlisted in the Marine Corps after high school and served in Iraq. A graduate of the Ohio State University and Yale Law School, he has contributed to the National Review and The New York Times and has appeared on Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, and CNBC. Currently, J.D. works as a principal at a leading Silicon Valley investment firm. Hillbilly Elegy is a #1 New York Times bestseller and widely considered one of the most important books of 2016.
Pranam: Kentucky, Ohio, the Marines, a degree from Ohio State summa cum laude in two years, and then Yale Law School here in New Haven. In the midst of this, when did you first think of writing Hillbilly Elegy? In the book, you talked a bit about meeting Yale Law Professor Amy Chua and how that influenced your writing this book. Continue reading