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WEDNESDAY

My favorite election story belongs to my brother-in-law, who was a wholly innocent 8-year-old white kid when he walked up to one of the three urinals in the school boys’ room in 1968. Several black classmates approached him. “Hey, you’re voting for Wallace!” one of them said urgently. He wisely moved along, as instructed, and cast his urinary ballot for Humphrey. Coulda been a racial incident; instead, it was a respectful collaboration of sorts. Richard Sennett—who grew up in Chicago’s then-racially-mixed Cabrini Green project in the ’40s and later became, among other things, a competitive cellist and one half of an interracial couple—blends memoir, analysis, and philosophy to explore a crucial and complicated issue: Respect in a World of Inequality. From welfare to artistic competition, from the church to the locker-room showers, find out what it means to him when Sennett reads at 7 p.m. at Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free. (202) 364-1919. (Pamela Murray Winters)