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Abby Tolchinsky and Ellie Wertheim Abby Tolchinsky and Ellie Wertheim

The saying goes that the personal is political. But the inverse is increasingly evident: The political is personal. In our layered worlds of journalism, politics, social media, popular culture, and academia, all manner of debate has effectively become part of the zeitgeist. “Debate” may even be a misnomer. One side sounds off into the abyss—nary a syllable reaching those with deeply held, incompatible convictions across the gaping chasm of positions. The issues, of course, tap into core values and many who sincerely seek to engage often find themselves shut out or shut down.

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