Albertson and Gadarian’s book, Anxious Politics: Democratic Citizenship in a Threatening World, arrives at an especially appropriate moment in time. Americans (not to mention citizens in other nations) are feeling tremendous anxiety about a range of phenomena largely beyond their control—globalization, terrorism, economic inequality, and climate change, among others.

Yet, this book is not only relevant to politics today. Albertson and Gadarian have convinced me that anxiety is much more fundamental to politics and to governing than many of us think. After all, democratic government is first and foremost a means of solving collective problems. And anxiety is the emotion that arises to alert us that we face a problem in our environment. Honest politicians will offer responsible solutions to legitimate anxieties....

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