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Hochschild spent years in the parishes of rural Louisiana to decipher why its citizens, faced with environmental calamity, would embrace the oil companies that caused the problem and eschew nearly all governmental support. She encountered friendly, generous, religious, and opinionated Tea Party members who no doubt rejoiced at the election of Donald Trump.— Mike Hare
When Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election, a bewildered nation turned to Strangers in Their Own Land to understand what Trump voters were thinking when they cast their ballots. Arlie Hochschild, one of the most influential sociologists of her generation, had spent the preceding five years immersed in the community around Lake Charles, Louisiana, a Tea Party stronghold. As Jedediah Purdy put it in the New Republic, "Hochschild is fascinated by how people make sense of their lives. . . . Her] attentive, detailed portraits . . . reveal a gulf between Hochchild's 'strangers in their own land' and a new elite." Already a favorite common read book in communities and on campuses across the country and called "humble and important" by David Brooks, Hochschild's book has been lauded by Noam Chomsky, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, and countless others.
The paperback edition will feature a new introduction by the author reflecting on the election of Donald Trump and the other events that have unfolded both in Louisiana and around the country since the hardcover edition was published, and will also include a readers' group guide in the back of the book.