Penn State Selects IT’S WHAT I DO for 2017-18 Common Read

By Sara Clemens | December 22 2016 | College & University Reads

We are pleased to announce It’s What I Do has been selected as the common read for the 2017-18 Penn State Reads program!

War photographer Lynsey Addario’s memoir is the story of how the relentless pursuit of truth has shaped her life. What she does, with clarity, beauty, and candor, is to document the complex lives of others. It’s her work, but it’s much more than that: it’s her singular calling.

Lynsey Addario was just finding her way as a young photographer when September 11 changed the world. One of the few photojournalists with experience in Afghanistan, she gets the call to return and cover the American invasion. She decides to set out across the world, face the chaos of crisis, and make a name for herself.

Watching uprisings unfold and people fight to the death for their freedom, Addario understands she is documenting not only news but also the fate of societies. Her story is more than just a snapshot of life on the front lines; it is witness to the human cost of war. Addario will visit the campus to discuss her experiences as a photojournalist with students and the larger Penn State community.

Read more about Penn State’s common read selection process.

[An] unflinching memoir. [Addario’s] book, woven through with images from her travels, offers insight into international events and the challenges faced by the journalists who capture them.”—The Washington Post

“[A] richly illustrated memoir….It is a diary of an empathetic young woman who makes understanding the wider world around her a professional calling.”—Los Angeles Times

“Addario’s narrative about growing up as one of four daughters born to hairdressers in Los Angeles and working her way up to being one of the world’s most accomplished photojournalists, male or female, is riveting.”—San Francisco Chronicle


It's What I Do
A Photographer's Life of Love and War

War photographer Lynsey Addario has traveled to every major theater of war of the 21st century to document the conflicts that have made, and remade, our world. In this inspirational memoir she explores her role as a photojournalist who documents not only the news, but also the fate of society.