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Through the Lens: ‘The Right to Read’

Jenny Mackenzie
Jenny Mackenzie / The Right to Read

37% of American fourth-graders read at “below basic” levels, which really means they can hardly read at all. A new film asks why.

The Right to Read” is a documentary that explores the literacy crisis in the United States. Kareem Weaver, an activist featured in the piece, says reading is our most important civil right. And outcomes among adults who struggle to read — they’re more likely to be unemployed or imprisoned — reinforce his case. Meanwhile, it could very well be the case that we aren’t teaching reading the right way. This Friday at noon, join us for a conversation about America’s literary crisis, and the lasting effects of illiteracy.

Please join KUER and the Utah Film Center for a screening of “The Right to Read” at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center on Wednesday, March 15 at 7 p.m., followed by a Q&A with director Jenny Mackenzie. The event is free but an RSVP is appreciated.


  • Jenny Mackenzie | Documentary filmmaker, her latest film is “The Right to Read”  @J_E_Mackenzie 
  • Kareem Weaver | Advocate for reading literacy and 2nd chair of the Oakland, California NAACP. @KJWinEducation
  • Emily Hanford | Senior producer for APM Reports. @ehanford

Airdate: Friday, Mar. 10, 2023 at 12 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

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