Book Club

Tuesday, July 20 at 7pm we will have our book club meeting at Bottlehouse Brewery, 13368 Madison Ave, Lakewood, OH 44107.

For July, we will watch the film Judas and the Black Messiah (see the trailer here).

We'll also read Why We're Polarized by Ezra Klein, a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller. The Amazon write-up is found below:

“The American political system—which includes everyone from voters to journalists to the president—is full of rational actors making rational decisions given the incentives they face,” writes political analyst Ezra Klein. “We are a collection of functional parts whose efforts combine into a dysfunctional whole.”

“A thoughtful, clear and persuasive analysis” (The New York Times Book Review), Why We’re Polarized reveals the structural and psychological forces behind America’s descent into division and dysfunction. Neither a polemic nor a lament, this book offers a clear framework for understanding everything from Trump’s rise to the Democratic Party’s leftward shift to the politicization of everyday culture.

America is polarized, first and foremost, by identity. Everyone engaged in American politics is engaged, at some level, in identity politics. Over the past fifty years in America, our partisan identities have merged with our racial, religious, geographic, ideological, and cultural identities. These merged identities have attained a weight that is breaking much in our politics and tearing at the bonds that hold this country together.

Klein shows how and why American politics polarized around identity in the 20th century, and what that polarization did to the way we see the world and one another. And he traces the feedback loops between polarized political identities and polarized political institutions that are driving our system toward crisis.

Past Books & Documentaries

  • June 2021

    • Book: Twilight of Democracy: The Seductive Lure of Authoritarianism by Anne Applebaum​

    • Film: Disclosure (Netflix)

  • May 2021

    • Book: Kill Switch: The Rise of the Modern Senate and the Crippling of American Democracy by Adam Jentleson.​

    • Film: The White Tiger (Netflix)

  • April 2021

    • Book: A Life on Our Planet: My Witness Statement and a Vision for the Future by David Attenborough​

    • Film: David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet (Netflix)

  • March 2021

    • Film: Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution (Netflix)​

    • Book: A Promised Land by Barack Obama

  • February 2021

    • Film: All In: The Fight for Democracy (Amazon)

    • Book: A Promised Land by Barack Obama​

  • January 2021

    • Film: Trial of the Chicago 7 (Netflix)

    • Book: A Promised Land by Barack Obama

  • December 2020

    • ​Film: Capital in the 21st Century (Netflix)

  • November 2020

    • Book: Pelosi by Molly Ball​

  • October 2020

    • Book: Democracy in One Book or Less: How It Works, Why It Doesn't, and Why Fixing It Is Easier than You Think by David Litt​

    • Film: The Great Hack (Netflix)

  • September 2020

    • Book: Democracy in One book of Less: How It Works, Why It Doesn't, and Why Fixing It Is Easier than You Think by David Litt​

    • Film: The Sapphires (Netflix)

  • August 2020

    • Book: The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander​

    • Film: The Vote (PBS American Experience)

  • July 2020

    • Book: The End of Policing by Alex S. Vitale​

    • Films: I am Not Your Negro (YouTube) and Just Mercy (Amazon)

    • Podcast: The Wilderness Season 2 Episodes 5 & 6 (Crooked Media)

  • June 2020

    • Book: The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History by John M. Barry​

    • Film: Becoming (Netflix)

    • Podcast: The Wilderness Season 2 Episodes 1-4 (Crooked Media)

  • May 2020

    • Book: The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History by John M. Barry​

    • Film: Influenza 1918 (PBS)

  • April 2020

    • Book: Desk 88: Eight Progressive Senators Who Changed America by Sherrod Brown​

    • Film: American Factory (Netflix)

  • February 2020

    • ​Book: Desk 88: Eight Progressive Senators Who Changed America by Sherrod Brown

  • January 2020​

    • Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World by Anand Giridharadas

  • November 2019​

    • Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don't Know by Malcolm Gladwell​

  • October 2019

    • This America: The Case for the Nation by Jill Lepore​

  • September 2019​

    • The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate – Discoveries from a Secret World by Peter Wohlleben
  • August 2019​

    • Humans: A Brief History of How We F*ed It All Up by Tom Phillips​

  • June-July 2019​

    • The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson​

  • May 2019

    • War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence by Ronan Farrow​

  • April 2019​

    • Clean Meat: How Growing Meat Without Animals Will Revolutionize Dinner and the World by Paul Shapiro​

  • March 2019​

    • Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover​

  • January 2019​

    • 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari​

  • November 2018​​

    • The Soul of America: the Battle for Our Better Angels by John Meacham​

  • September 2018

    • Fascism: A Warning by Madeleine Albright​

  • July 2018

    • The United States Constitution

  • June 2018​

    • Thanks, Obama: My Hopey, Changey White House Years by David Litt​

  • May 2018

    • The Common Good by Robert B. Reich​

  • March 2018​

    • Fire and Fury by Michael Wolff​

  • February 2018​

    • Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari​

  • November 2017

    • The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert​

  • September 2017​

    • The All New Don't Think of an Elephant by George Lakoff​

  • August 2017​

    • Cooler Smarter: Practical Steps for Low Carbon Living by James Eckhouse​

  • May-June 2017

    • This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate by Naomi Klein​​