The Mengzi (4th c. BCE)

Though it was written in the 4th century B.C.E., Mengzi's philosophy, especially his democratic tendencies, his policy recommendations, and his humanistic outlook, can still be inspirational to the left today.

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Where Asian-Americans fit into the fight for racial justice

A first stab at describing how I see race in the U.S. informed by experiences as an Asian. My experiences with racism involve both experiencing it firsthand and being largely protected from it. I think Asian-Americans tend to have the effect of thwarting white racial supremacy beliefs. And I think the Asian-American ethnic category is kind of bizarre and fake but also can be an uplifting symbol of solidarity capable of transcending nations, language, and histories of violence and oppression.

Marriage Markets (2014)

This book is a detailed analysis of the puzzle of why (some) marriages in the U.S. are becoming increasingly unstable. It argues that changes in job opportunities create bifurcated marriage markets which lead to bifurcated marriage behavior. In doing so, the book touches on issues of gender, race, and class, and argues that this bifurcated marriage behavior can exacerbate societal inequality.

Weapons of Math Destruction (2016)

Sophisticated models that learn patterns from large datasets offer the promise of providing impartial, efficient, accurate, "smart" decision-makers. As such, they are becoming more widespread and have a lot of influence over people's life outcomes. Weapons of Math Destruction argues, however, that these algorithms have troubling features that codify unjust discrimination and are inscrutable and unaccountable. I focus in this post on these undesirable features and how to counteract them.