Our Divided Political Heart by E.J. Dionne

100%

7 Critic Reviews

Dionne presents a mash-up course in philosophy and graduate-level American history, written in an avuncular style with choice nuggets of deadpan wit.
-Star Tribune

Synopsis

America today is at a political impasse; we face a nation divided and discontented. Acclaimed political commentator E.J. Dionne argues that Americans can't agree on who we are as a nation because we can't agree on who we've been, or what it is, philosophically and spiritually, that makes us "Americans."
Dionne places our current quarrels in the long-standing tradition of struggle between two core values: the love of individualism and our reverence for community. Both make us who we are, and to ignore either one is to distort our national character. He sees the current Tea Party as a representation of hyper-individualism, and takes on their agenda-serving distortions of history, from the Revolution to the Civil War and the constitutional role of government. Tea Partiers have reacted fiercely to President Obama, who seeks to restore a communitarian balance - a cause in American liberalism which Dionne traces through recent decades.
The ability of the American system to self-correct may be one of its greatest assets, but we have been caught in cycles of over-correcting. Dionne seeks, through an understanding of our factious past, to rediscover the idea of true progress, and the confidence that it can be achieved.
 

About E.J. Dionne

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E. J. Dionne Jr. is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, a columnist for the Washington Post, and University Professor in the Foundations of Democracy and Culture at Georgetown University. He appears weekly on NPR and regularly on MSNBC and NBC's Meet the Press. His twice-weekly op-ed column is now syndicated in 140 newspapers. His writing has been published in the Atlantic, the New Republic, the American Prospect, the Washington Post Magazine, the New York Times Magazine, Commonweal, New Statesman, and elsewhere. He is the author, editor, or coeditor of numerous books, including the classic bestseller Why Americans Hate Politics, which won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and was nominated for the National Book Award. His most recent book is Souled Out. Dionne lives in Bethesda, Maryland, with wife, Mary Boyle, and their three children.
 
Published May 22, 2012 by Bloomsbury USA. 337 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Our Divided Political Heart
All: 7 | Positive: 7 | Negative: 0

Publishers Weekly

Excellent
Feb 13 2012

Despite its sometimes academic tone, Tea Partiers and Occupiers alike may be surprised and enlightened by this lucid analysis, all the more convincing for its sympathetic treatment of both sides of the argument.

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Star Tribune

Excellent
Reviewed by Joseph Williams on Jun 09 2012

Dionne presents a mash-up course in philosophy and graduate-level American history, written in an avuncular style with choice nuggets of deadpan wit.

Read Full Review of Our Divided Political Heart | See more reviews from Star Tribune

The Washington Post

Excellent
Reviewed by Jeff Greenfield on Jun 01 2012

His case is strong enough, serious enough and grounded enough to challenge those on the other side of the divide to offer a counterargument as rigorously argued as this one.

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Boston.com

Excellent
Reviewed by Michael Washburn on Jun 17 2012

...the book is a well-mannered, thoughtful attempt to restore civic grace and productive political conversation.

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Daily Kos

Excellent
May 27 2012

Overall, I found the book to be an impressive tour of forgotten history, recent and otherwise... and a helpful explanatory guide to the rhetoric conservatives use today.

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The Nation

Excellent
Reviewed by Tom Perriello on Jun 26 2012

n Our Divided Political Heart, Dionne bolsters the intellectual, constitutional and moral foundations on which this stronger, more just America can be rebuilt.

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American Magazine

Excellent
Reviewed by Karen Smith

Overall, it would be hard to find a more civil, well-reasoned or hope-filled book about the current polarized state of the country.

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Reader Rating for Our Divided Political Heart
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