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The Illnesses of Identification Politics: A Symposium on American Awakening

What should Americans think of identity politics? A few years ago it was common for critics of the phenomenon to be ridiculed for exaggerating the impact of campus culture on politics, but no longer. From the 1619 project to the work of “awakened capital” to the ongoing protests and riots that have devastated so many of our cities, identity politics has become a major force in American life.

In a provocative series of essays, and now in his new book American Awakening: Identity Politics and Other Afflictions of Our Time, Georgetown University political theorist Joshua Mitchell argues that identity politics is, in fact, the endeavor to turn politics into a religious space where the innocent fight against transgressors and destroy any hope of a liberal government.

We brought together three writers to comment on American Awakening and explore its subjects:

Blood on their hands

by Eric Kaufmann

Diagnosis of waking up

by Rachel Lu

Not to forget

by Brian A. Smith

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