Literacy and graphicacy with Alberto Cairo


My friend and former colleague Alberto Cairo will return to UNC-Chapel Hill on Sept. 6 to deliver a lecture called “Visual Trumpery.”

Cairo’s visit is part of an international tour on “trumpery,” which Cairo defines as “worthless nonsense” that is intended to deceive. Despite the allusion to the president in the lecture’s title, Cairo’s presentation is nonpartisan, and it takes aim at such deception in maps, charts and graphs across the political spectrum.

Cairo, a former UNC-Chapel Hill professor of visual communication who now teaches at the University of Miami, hopes the tour will promote “graphicacy,” or visual literacy. In his presentation, he explores these questions:

  • Is the graphic based on reliable sources and data?
  • Does the graphic include enough information to be truthful?
  • Is the data correctly represented?
  • Did the journalist or designer take uncertainty into account?

I’m looking forward to this presentation and encourage you to attend in Chapel Hill or elsewhere on the tour. You can read more about Alberto Cairo and the tour at the Visual Trumpery website.

Here are the details on the UNC lecture, which is free and open to the public:

WHO: Alberto Cairo, Knight Chair in Visual Journalism at the University of Miami and author of “The Functional Art” and “The Truthful Art
WHEN: 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6, 2018
WHERE: Room 33, Carroll Hall, UNC-Chapel Hill