"This book is a wonderfully entertaining, provocative, and engaging read, as well as an antidote to the 24/7 news cycle of instant punditry and screaming headlines. The authors’ spirit of passionate, yet respectful, engagement brought forth nuances that were illuminating and surprising. By exploring their views on contentious issues and posing tough questions to flesh out each other’s perspectives, they have made a genuine contribution to American political life. More of us could benefit from leaving the ‘comfort zone’ and sticking our necks out to connect with people who have very different ideas from our own."—Dave Joseph, vice president, Public Conversations Project
"One of the toughest divides to bridge is that between liberals and conservatives. Yet Neisser and Hess pull it off, and without compromising their principles or forcing agreement when it’s just not there. Their journey together is engrossing and inspiring: they listen carefully to each other, ask plenty of questions, and have fun. In doing so, they offer a model of thoughtful deliberative practice, something sorely needed in these polarizing times."—Sandy Heierbacher, director, National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation
"I've been so disheartened with what I see going on in the political world these days that I found myself engaged in this book from the start. What I read gives me hope that if more people tried out what Neisser and Hess have done, this country could move away from political posturing and toward reasoned discussion of the many issues that divide us."—Dr. Joycelyn Landrum-Brown, program coordinator, Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
(Dr. Joycelyn Landrum-Brown)
About the Author
PHIL NEISSER chairs the Department of Politics at SUNY Potsdam and serves half-time as associate dean of arts and sciences. He is the author of United We Fall: Ending America's Love Affair with the Political Center
(Praeger, 2008). He lives in Potsdam, New York.
JACOB HESS is the research director at Utah Youth Village, a nonprofit for abused children and families in crisis. In 2004 he helped to develop and co-facilitate a liberal-conservative dialogue course at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign--the first of its kind in the nation. He lives in Salt Lake City, Utah.