67% of Americans do not have a college degree. Christopher Zara is one of them.

Boldly honest, wryly funny, and utterly open-hearted, Uneducated is one diploma-less journalist’s map of our growing educational divide and, ultimately, a challenge: in our credential-obsessed world, what is the true value of a college degree?

For Christopher Zara, this is the professional minefield he has had to navigate since the day he was kicked out of his New Jersey high school for behavioral problems and never allowed back. From a school for “troubled kids,” to wrestling with his identity in the burgeoning punk scene of the 1980s; from a stint as an ice cream scooper as he got clean in Florida, to an unpaid internship in New York in his thirties, Zara spent years contending with skeptical hiring managers and his own impostor syndrome before breaking into the world of journalism—only to be met by a pedigree-obsessed industry. As he navigated the world of the elite and saw the realities of the education gap firsthand, Zara realized he needed to confront the label he had been quietly holding in: what it looked like to be part of the “working class”—whatever that meant.

What's Inside

Read More Read Less


“Christopher Zara’s Uneducated is a piercing, heartbreaking, heartwarming memoir of triumph in the face of the societal challenges that confront so many of us. He offers a clear-eyed view of America’s education gap, as well as the implosion of media over the past decade, that none of us can afford to ignore.”—Nick Kolakowski, author of How to Become an Intellectual and editor of Lockdown: Stories of Crime, Hope, and Terror During a Pandemic
"Whatever happened to that weird-looking introverted kid in high school who just disappeared one day? An engrossing read, honestly told and at times both hilarious and heartbreaking, Uneducated is a universal tale of defying the odds, of proving to yourself and to others that, yes, there is a place in the world for people who fit outside the mold."—Angela Di Carlo, comedic cabaret singer-songwriter
“An inspiration for anyone who has ever felt othered and forged their own path—I was rooting for him every minute.”—Patricia Black, creative director, Albright Fashion Library
Read More Read Less