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Why We're Polarized

Author : Ezra Klein
Publisher : Simon and Schuster
Release : 2020-01-28
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9781476700397

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Book Why We're Polarized Description/Summary:

The New York Times Bestseller The Wall Street Journal Bestseller “Few books are as well-matched to the moment of their publication as Ezra Klein’s Why We’re Polarized.” —Dan Hopkins, The Washington Post “It is likely to become the political book of the year....Powerful [and] intelligent.” —Fareed Zakaria, CNN “Superbly researched and written..." —Francis Fukuyama, The Washington Post America’s political system isn’t broken. The truth is scarier: it’s working exactly as designed. In this book, journalist Ezra Klein reveals how that system is polarizing us—and how we are polarizing it—with disastrous results. “The American political system—which includes everyone from voters to journalists to the president—is full of rational actors making rational decisions given the incentives they face,” writes political analyst Ezra Klein. “We are a collection of functional parts whose efforts combine into a dysfunctional whole.” In Why We’re Polarized, Klein reveals the structural and psychological forces behind America’s descent into division and dysfunction. Neither a polemic nor a lament, this book offers a clear framework for understanding everything from Trump’s rise to the Democratic Party’s leftward shift to the politicization of everyday culture. America is polarized, first and foremost, by identity. Everyone engaged in American politics is engaged, at some level, in identity politics. Over the past fifty years in America, our partisan identities have merged with our racial, religious, geographic, ideological, and cultural identities. These merged identities have attained a weight that is breaking much in our politics and tearing at the bonds that hold this country together. Klein shows how and why American politics polarized around identity in the twentieth century, and what that polarization did to the way we see the world and one another. And he traces the feedback loops between polarized political identities and polarized political institutions that are driving our system toward crisis. This is a revelatory book that will change how you look at politics, and perhaps at yourself.

Why We're Polarized

Author : Ezra Klein
Publisher : Profile Books
Release : 2020-04-02
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9781782837916

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Book Why We're Polarized Description/Summary:

A New York Times and Wall Street Journal Bestseller "Few books are as well-matched to the moment of their publication" - Dan Hopkins, The Washington Post "Powerful [and] intelligent" - Fareed Zakaria, CNN "Superbly researched and written" - Francis Fukuyama, The Washington Post America's political system isn't broken. The truth is scarier: it's working exactly as designed. In Why We're Polarised, Ezra Klein reveals the structural and psychological forces behind America's deep political divisions, revealing how a system filled with rational, functional parts can combine into a dysfunctional whole. Neither a polemic nor a lament, this book offers a clear framework for understanding everything from Trump's rise to the Democratic Party's leftward shift to the politicisation of everyday culture. Klein shows how and why American politics polarised in the twentieth century, what that polarisation did to Americans' views of the world and one another, and how feedback loops between polarised political identities and polarised political institutions drive the system toward crisis. This revelatory book will change how you look at politics, and perhaps at yourself.

Polarized

Author : James E. Campbell
Publisher : Princeton University Press
Release : 2018-03-27
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9780691180861

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Book Polarized Description/Summary:

Many continue to believe that the United States is a nation of political moderates. In fact, it is a nation divided. It has been so for some time and has grown more so. This book provides a new and historically grounded perspective on the polarization of America, systematically documenting how and why it happened. Polarized presents commonsense benchmarks to measure polarization, draws data from a wide range of historical sources, and carefully assesses the quality of the evidence. Through an innovative and insightful use of circumstantial evidence, it provides a much-needed reality check to claims about polarization. This rigorous yet engaging and accessible book examines how polarization displaced pluralism and how this affected American democracy and civil society. Polarized challenges the widely held belief that polarization is the product of party and media elites, revealing instead how the American public in the 1960s set in motion the increase of polarization. American politics became highly polarized from the bottom up, not the top down, and this began much earlier than often thought. The Democrats and the Republicans are now ideologically distant from each other and about equally distant from the political center. Polarized also explains why the parties are polarized at all, despite their battle for the decisive median voter. No subject is more central to understanding American politics than political polarization, and no other book offers a more in-depth and comprehensive analysis of the subject than this one.

Democracies Divided

Author : Thomas Carothers,Andrew O'Donohue
Publisher : Brookings Institution Press
Release : 2019-09-24
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9780815737223

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Book Democracies Divided Description/Summary:

“A must-read for anyone concerned about the fate of contemporary democracies.”—Steven Levitsky, co-author of How Democracies Die Why divisions have deepened and what can be done to heal them As one part of the global democratic recession, severe political polarization is increasingly afflicting old and new democracies alike, producing the erosion of democratic norms and rising societal anger. This volume is the first book-length comparative analysis of this troubling global phenomenon, offering in-depth case studies of countries as wide-ranging and important as Brazil, India, Kenya, Poland, Turkey, and the United States. The case study authors are a diverse group of country and regional experts, each with deep local knowledge and experience. Democracies Divided identifies and examines the fissures that are dividing societies and the factors bringing polarization to a boil. In nearly every case under study, political entrepreneurs have exploited and exacerbated long-simmering divisions for their own purposes—in the process undermining the prospects for democratic consensus and productive governance. But this book is not simply a diagnosis of what has gone wrong. Each case study discusses actions that concerned citizens and organizations are taking to counter polarizing forces, whether through reforms to political parties, institutions, or the media. The book’s editors distill from the case studies a range of possible ways for restoring consensus and defeating polarization in the world’s democracies. Timely, rigorous, and accessible, this book is of compelling interest to civic activists, political actors, scholars, and ordinary citizens in societies beset by increasingly rancorous partisanship.

A Colony in a Nation

Author : Chris Hayes
Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
Release : 2017-03-21
Category : Social Science
ISBN : 9780393254235

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Book A Colony in a Nation Description/Summary:

New York Times Bestseller New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice "An essential and groundbreaking text in the effort to understand how American criminal justice went so badly awry." —Ta-Nehisi Coates, author of Between the World and Me In A Colony in a Nation, New York Times best-selling author and Emmy Award–winning news anchor Chris Hayes upends the national conversation on policing and democracy. Drawing on wide-ranging historical, social, and political analysis, as well as deeply personal experiences with law enforcement, Hayes contends that our country has fractured in two: the Colony and the Nation. In the Nation, the law is venerated. In the Colony, fear and order undermine civil rights. With great empathy, Hayes seeks to understand this systemic divide, examining its ties to racial inequality, the omnipresent threat of guns, and the dangerous and unfortunate results of choices made by fear.

Race Against Time

Author : Jerry Mitchell
Publisher : Simon & Schuster
Release : 2021-02-02
Category : History
ISBN : 9781451645149

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Book Race Against Time Description/Summary:

“For almost two decades, investigative journalist Jerry Mitchell doggedly pursued the Klansmen responsible for some of the most notorious murders of the civil rights movement. This book is his amazing story. Thanks to him, and to courageous prosecutors, witnesses, and FBI agents, justice finally prevailed.” —John Grisham, author of The Guardians On June 21, 1964, more than twenty Klansmen murdered three civil rights workers. The killings, in what would become known as the “Mississippi Burning” case, were among the most brazen acts of violence during the civil rights movement. And even though the killers’ identities, including the sheriff’s deputy, were an open secret, no one was charged with murder in the months and years that followed. It took forty-one years before the mastermind was brought to trial and finally convicted for the three innocent lives he took. If there is one man who helped pave the way for justice, it is investigative reporter Jerry Mitchell. In Race Against Time, Mitchell takes readers on the twisting, pulse-racing road that led to the reopening of four of the most infamous killings from the days of the civil rights movement, decades after the fact. His work played a central role in bringing killers to justice for the assassination of Medgar Evers, the firebombing of Vernon Dahmer, the 16th Street Church bombing in Birmingham and the Mississippi Burning case. Mitchell reveals how he unearthed secret documents, found long-lost suspects and witnesses, building up evidence strong enough to take on the Klan. He takes us into every harrowing scene along the way, as when Mitchell goes into the lion’s den, meeting one-on-one with the very murderers he is seeking to catch. His efforts have put four leading Klansmen behind bars, years after they thought they had gotten away with murder. Race Against Time is an astonishing, courageous story capturing a historic race for justice, as the past is uncovered, clue by clue, and long-ignored evils are brought into the light. This is a landmark book and essential reading for all Americans.

Trust in a Polarized Age

Author : Kevin Vallier
Publisher : Oxford University Press, USA
Release : 2020-10-21
Category : Philosophy
ISBN : 9780190887223

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Book Trust in a Polarized Age Description/Summary:

Americans today don't trust each other and their institutions as much as they once did, fueling destructive ideological conflicts and hardened partisanship. In Trust in a Polarized Age, political philosopher Kevin Vallier argues that to build social trust and reduce polarization, we must strengthen liberal democratic institutions--high-quality governance, procedural fairness, markets, social welfare programs, freedom of association, and democracy. Theseinstitutions not only create trust, they do so justly, by recognizing and respecting our basic rights.

Uncivil Agreement

Author : Lilliana Mason
Publisher : University of Chicago Press
Release : 2018-04-16
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9780226524689

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Book Uncivil Agreement Description/Summary:

Political polarization in America is at an all-time high, and the conflict has moved beyond disagreements about matters of policy. For the first time in more than twenty years, research has shown that members of both parties hold strongly unfavorable views of their opponents. This is polarization rooted in social identity, and it is growing. The campaign and election of Donald Trump laid bare this fact of the American electorate, its successful rhetoric of “us versus them” tapping into a powerful current of anger and resentment. With Uncivil Agreement, Lilliana Mason looks at the growing social gulf across racial, religious, and cultural lines, which have recently come to divide neatly between the two major political parties. She argues that group identifications have changed the way we think and feel about ourselves and our opponents. Even when Democrats and Republicans can agree on policy outcomes, they tend to view one other with distrust and to work for party victory over all else. Although the polarizing effects of social divisions have simplified our electoral choices and increased political engagement, they have not been a force that is, on balance, helpful for American democracy. Bringing together theory from political science and social psychology, Uncivil Agreement clearly describes this increasingly “social” type of polarization in American politics and will add much to our understanding of contemporary politics.

The Case for Polarized Politics

Author : Jeffrey Bell
Publisher : Encounter Books
Release : 2012-01-03
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9781594035791

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Book The Case for Polarized Politics Description/Summary:

No movement resembling American social conservatism exists anywhere else in the world of affluent democracy encompassing western Europe and Japan. This simple, undeniable fact has led many commentators to treat social conservatism as a “retro” movement soon to disappear in the U. S. as well, an inevitable (if lagging) casualty of global modernization. Author and political activist Jeffrey Bell argues that social conservatism is uniquely American because it is in reality an outgrowth of American exceptionalism. It exists here because the founding principles of the United States—centering on the belief that humanity receives its equal rights directly from God rather than from government—retain a mass following among American voters, even in the wake of abandonment of belief in America’s theistic founding by elites and institutions that once espoused it. This allegiance to the founding, rather than some quasi-theocratic project by what is frequently misnamed the “religious right,” accounts for social conservatism’s comparatively recent birth and persistent strength in U. S. politics—and also for its absence in societies whose foundings were not rooted in the universality of God-given human rights. Bell argues that a worldwide upheaval in the 1960s set the stage for the rise of social conservatism, which had no earlier political existence. The 1960s upheaval resulted in the triumph of the social agenda of the left, particularly the sexual revolution, among elite opinion in the United States as well as in Europe, Japan and elsewhere. In subsequent decades the global left has sidelined its century-long drive for socialism and returned to its late-eighteenth-century roots in the thought of Jean-Jacques Rousseau and the radical French revolutionaries known as the Jacobins, who believed human fulfillment depends on liberation from most civilized institutions, particularly organized religion and the family. Despite the many predictions of its demise, social conservatism has gained and held popular strength in the U. S. because of its roots in a theistic version of the European enlightenment of the 17th and 18th centuries, which Bell describes and analyzes as the “conservative enlightenment.” It is a rich, optimistic belief system that not only dominated the American founding but transformed society in the English-speaking world and remains an attractive alternative in the eyes of many of the world’s peoples—certainly in comparison to the competing universalisms advocated by the left enlightenment and by the anti-egalitarian Islamic revival. The ability of social conservatism and of its parent, the conservative enlightenment, to revive and spread this natural law-centered democratic vision could reshape the battle of ideas that increasingly defines our post-Cold War world.

The Big Sort

Author : Bill Bishop,Robert G. Cushing,Robert G.. Cushing
Publisher : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release : 2008
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 0618689354

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Book The Big Sort Description/Summary:

Drawing on intensive research and extensive demographic data, a noted journalist reveals how Americans have been sorting themselves into homogeneous communities over the past three decades, and analyzes the implications of this way-of-life segregation in terms of the cultural, political, and ideological divisiveness and polarization that exists in America today.

The Polarizers

Author : Sam Rosenfeld
Publisher : University of Chicago Press
Release : 2018
Category : History
ISBN : 9780226407258

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Book The Polarizers Description/Summary:

The idea of responsible partisanship, 1945-1952 -- Democrats and the politics of principle, 1952-1960 -- A choice, not an echo, 1945-1964 -- Power in movement, 1961-1968 -- The age of party reform, 1968-1975 -- The making of a vanguard party, 1969-1980 -- Liberal alliance-building for lean times, 1972-1980 -- Dawn of a new party period, 1980-2000 -- Conclusion polarization without responsibility, 2000-2016

The Politics Industry

Author : Katherine M. Gehl,Michael E. Porter
Publisher : Harvard Business Press
Release : 2020-06-23
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9781633699243

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Book The Politics Industry Description/Summary:

Our political system in America is broken, right? Wrong. The truth is, the American political system is working exactly how it is designed to work, and it isn't designed or optimized today to work for us—for ordinary citizens. Most people believe that our political system is a public institution with high-minded principles and impartial rules derived from the Constitution. In reality, it has become a private industry dominated by a textbook duopoly—the Democrats and the Republicans—and plagued and perverted by unhealthy competition between the players. Tragically, it has therefore become incapable of delivering solutions to America's key economic and social challenges. In fact, there's virtually no connection between our political leaders solving problems and getting reelected. In The Politics Industry, business leader and path-breaking political innovator Katherine Gehl and world-renowned business strategist Michael Porter take a radical new approach. They ingeniously apply the tools of business analysis—and Porter's distinctive Five Forces framework—to show how the political system functions just as every other competitive industry does, and how the duopoly has led to the devastating outcomes we see today. Using this competition lens, Gehl and Porter identify the most powerful lever for change—a strategy comprised of a clear set of choices in two key areas: how our elections work and how we make our laws. Their bracing assessment and practical recommendations cut through the endless debate about various proposed fixes, such as term limits and campaign finance reform. The result: true political innovation. The Politics Industry is an original and completely nonpartisan guide that will open your eyes to the true dynamics and profound challenges of the American political system and provide real solutions for reshaping the system for the benefit of all. THE INSTITUTE FOR POLITICAL INNOVATION The authors will donate all royalties from the sale of this book to the Institute for Political Innovation.

Polarization

Author : Nolan McCarty
Publisher : What Everyone Needs to Know
Release : 2019
Category : POLITICAL SCIENCE
ISBN : 9780190867782

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Book Polarization Description/Summary:

The 2016 election of Donald J. Trump invoked a time for reflection about the state of American politics and its deep ideological, cultural, racial, regional, and economic divisions. But one aspect that the contemporary discussions often miss is that these fissures have been opening over several decades and are deeply rooted in the structure of American politics and society. In Polarization: What Everyone Needs to Know® Nolan McCarty takes readers through what scholars know and don't know about the origins, development, and implications of our rising political conflicts, delving into social, economic, and geographic determinants of polarization in the United States. While the current political climate seems to suggest that extreme views are becoming more popular, McCarty also argues that, contrary to popular belief, the 2016 election was a natural outgrowth of 40 years of polarized politics, rather than a significant break with the past. He evaluates arguments over which factors that have created this state of affairs, including gerrymandered legislative districts, partisan primary nomination systems, and our private campaign finance system. He also considers the potential of major reforms such as instating proportional representation or ranked choice voting to remedy extreme polarization. A concise overview of a complex and crucial topic in US politics, this book is for anyone wanting to understand how to repair the cracks in our system.

Unstable Majorities

Author : Morris P. Fiorina
Publisher : Hoover Press
Release : 2017-11-01
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9780817921163

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Book Unstable Majorities Description/Summary:

America is "currently fighting its second Civil War." Partisan politics are "ripping this country apart." The 2016 election "will go down as the most acrimonious presidential campaign of all." Such statements have become standard fare in American politics. In a time marked by gridlock and incivility, it seems the only thing Americans can agree on is this: we're more divided today than we've ever been in our history. In Unstable Majorities Morris P. Fiorina surveys American political history to reveal that, in fact, the American public is not experiencing a period of unprecedented polarization. Bypassing the alarmism that defines contemporary punditry, he cites research and historical context that illuminate the forces that shape voting patterns, political parties, and voter behavior. By placing contemporary events in their proper context, he corrects widespread misconceptions and gives reasons to be optimistic about the future of American electoral politics.

Solutions to Political Polarization in America

Author : Nathaniel Persily
Publisher : Cambridge University Press
Release : 2015-04-27
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9781107087118

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Book Solutions to Political Polarization in America Description/Summary:

"This volume assembles several of the nation's top analysts of polarization in American politics. However, unlike the many other volumes written on this subject, this book focuses on solutions to polarization. As such, it necessarily takes these authors,who more often analyze causes and consequences than propose remedies, out of their comfort zone. Debunking conventional wisdom and warning of unintended consequences tend to be more valuable coins in the realm of political science. The professional risksusually exceed the rewards of sticking out one's neck to suggest, with admittedly incomplete information, reforms that might address the most serious policy challenges of the day. We are, therefore, very thankful for the Hewlett Foundation, which helped alter the cost-benefit calculus and support a conference that produced the papers for this volume"--

It's Even Worse Than It Looks

Author : Thomas E. Mann,Norman J. Ornstein
Publisher : Basic Books
Release : 2016-04-05
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9780465096732

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Book It's Even Worse Than It Looks Description/Summary:

Hyperpartisanship is as old as American democracy. But now, acrimony is not confined to a moment; it's a permanent state of affairs and has seeped into every part of the political process. Identifying the overriding problems that have led Congress—and the United States—to the brink of institutional collapse, It's Even Worse Than It Looks profoundly altered the debate about why America's government has become so dysfunctional. Through a new preface and afterword, Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein bring the story forward, examining the 2012 presidential campaign and exploring the prospects of a less dysfunctional government. As provocative and controversial as ever, It's Even Worse Than It Looks will continue to set the terms of our political debate in the years to come.

How Democracies Die

Author : Steven Levitsky,Daniel Ziblatt
Publisher : Crown
Release : 2018-01-16
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9781524762957

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Book How Democracies Die Description/Summary:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “Comprehensive, enlightening, and terrifyingly timely.”—The New York Times Book Review (Editors' Choice) WINNER OF THE GOLDSMITH BOOK PRIZE • SHORTLISTED FOR THE LIONEL GELBER PRIZE • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Washington Post • Time • Foreign Affairs • WBUR • Paste Donald Trump’s presidency has raised a question that many of us never thought we’d be asking: Is our democracy in danger? Harvard professors Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt have spent more than twenty years studying the breakdown of democracies in Europe and Latin America, and they believe the answer is yes. Democracy no longer ends with a bang—in a revolution or military coup—but with a whimper: the slow, steady weakening of critical institutions, such as the judiciary and the press, and the gradual erosion of long-standing political norms. The good news is that there are several exit ramps on the road to authoritarianism. The bad news is that, by electing Trump, we have already passed the first one. Drawing on decades of research and a wide range of historical and global examples, from 1930s Europe to contemporary Hungary, Turkey, and Venezuela, to the American South during Jim Crow, Levitsky and Ziblatt show how democracies die—and how ours can be saved. Praise for How Democracies Die “What we desperately need is a sober, dispassionate look at the current state of affairs. Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt, two of the most respected scholars in the field of democracy studies, offer just that.”—The Washington Post “Where Levitsky and Ziblatt make their mark is in weaving together political science and historical analysis of both domestic and international democratic crises; in doing so, they expand the conversation beyond Trump and before him, to other countries and to the deep structure of American democracy and politics.”—Ezra Klein, Vox “If you only read one book for the rest of the year, read How Democracies Die. . . .This is not a book for just Democrats or Republicans. It is a book for all Americans. It is nonpartisan. It is fact based. It is deeply rooted in history. . . . The best commentary on our politics, no contest.”—Michael Morrell, former Acting Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (via Twitter) “A smart and deeply informed book about the ways in which democracy is being undermined in dozens of countries around the world, and in ways that are perfectly legal.”—Fareed Zakaria, CNN

The Righteous Mind

Author : Jonathan Haidt
Publisher : Vintage
Release : 2013
Category : Psychology
ISBN : 9780307455772

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Book The Righteous Mind Description/Summary:

Presents a groundbreaking investigation into the origins of morality at the core of religion and politics, offering scholarly insight into the motivations behind cultural clashes that are polarizing America.

How America Lost Its Mind

Author : Thomas E. Patterson
Publisher : University of Oklahoma Press
Release : 2019-10-03
Category : Political Science
ISBN : 9780806165684

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Book How America Lost Its Mind Description/Summary:

Americans are losing touch with reality. On virtually every issue, from climate change to immigration, tens of millions of Americans have opinions and beliefs wildly at odds with fact, rendering them unable to think sensibly about politics. In How America Lost Its Mind, Thomas E. Patterson explains the rise of a world of “alternative facts” and the slow-motion cultural and political calamity unfolding around us. We don’t have to search far for the forces that are misleading us and tearing us apart: politicians for whom division is a strategy; talk show hosts who have made an industry of outrage; news outlets that wield conflict as a marketing tool; and partisan organizations and foreign agents who spew disinformation to advance a cause, make a buck, or simply amuse themselves. The consequences are severe. How America Lost Its Mind maps a political landscape convulsed with distrust, gridlock, brinksmanship, petty feuding, and deceptive messaging. As dire as this picture is, and as unlikely as immediate relief might be, Patterson sees a way forward and underscores its urgency. A call to action, his book encourages us to wrest institutional power from ideologues and disruptors and entrust it to sensible citizens and leaders, to restore our commitment to mutual tolerance and restraint, to cleanse the Internet of fake news and disinformation, and to demand a steady supply of trustworthy and relevant information from our news sources. As philosopher Hannah Arendt wrote decades ago, the rise of demagogues is abetted by “people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists.” In How America Lost Its Mind, Thomas E. Patterson makes a passionate case for fully and fiercely engaging on the side of truth and mutual respect in our present arms race between fact and fake, unity and division, civility and incivility.