Since September 11, 2001, most attempts at reasoned political debate in America have been severely limited by the violent language of the Right.
In books and on television, it has become a regular ritual for conservative pundits and intellectuals to infuse violence—particularly against Democrats or liberals—into discussions of the major issues of the day, such as terrorism, immigration and gun violence.
The result is the creation of a shrill discourse that silences opposition and destroys any chance for serious, civil debate.
In Outright Barbarous: How the Violent Language of the Right is Poisoning American Democracy, political language expert Jeffrey Feldman analyzes the words of leading conservative figures Ann Coulter, Dinesh D’Souza, James Dobson, Wayne LaPierre, Pat Buchanan and Bill O’Reilly to show how the Right’s language of violence is polluting our public discourse and limiting the free exchange of ideas.
In addition to exposing the conservative obsession with violence, Feldman also shows how the civic discussion in America can be reshaped without the use of violent language, creating a healthier political climate.
Related: Frameshop: O'Reilly's Anti-Latino Rant