Professor of Sociology Emerita
University of California, Berkeley
My most recent research focuses on the rise of the American right–the topic of my latest book, Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right (The New Press, September 2016), a finalist for the National Book Award. Based on intensive interviews of Tea Party enthusiasts in Louisiana, conducted over the last five years and focusing on emotions, I try to scale an “empathy wall” to learn how to see, think and feel as they do. What, I ask, do members of the Tea Party–or anyone else–want to feel about the nation and its leaders? I trace this desire to what I call their “deep story”–a feels-as-if story of their difficult struggle for the American Dream. Hidden beneath the right-wing hostility to almost all government intervention, I argue, lies an anguishing loss of honor, alienation and engagement in a hidden social class war. See The Minneapolis Star Tribune and The Boston Globe.