What’s the Matter with Kansas? (2004)

This book puts forward the argument that the right's political strategy since the '60s has been built on fanning class resentment but disguising it as a culture war. The result is a cycle of backlash against "liberal elites" that pushes U.S. politics rightward each time it occurs. Its analysis and predictions are particularly insightful in light of the last election.


On the place of empathy in social justice movements

It's unfortunately very common for people to weaponize empathy -- to call for empathy in order to tell people seeking justice to be quieter. Due to this frequent occurrence, I think it is common for people to view practicing empathy as antithetical to achieving justice. In this essay, I argue that the act of truly practicing empathy is much different than what is prescribed by many people who call for empathy, and that truly practicing empathy dovetails with (rather than opposes) justice.

Book: Nonviolent Communication (2003)

For people wondering about how to engage in difficult, high-stakes conversations about politics without losing their cool, deeply empathize with others, and maybe change someone's mind, I think this book, Nonviolent Communication, is a good place to start. This book explains an empathetic way of communicating (both speaking and listening) that make difficult conversations easier and more productive.