In Healing the Heart of Democracy, Parker J. Palmer quickens our instinct to seek the common good and gives us the tools to do it. This timely, courageous and practical work—intensely personal as well as political—is not about them, "those people" in Washington D.C., or in our state capitals, on whom we blame our political problems. It's about us, "We the People," and what we can do in everyday settings like families, neighborhoods, classrooms, congregations and workplaces to resist divide-and-conquer politics and restore a government "of the people, by the people, for the people."
In the same compelling, inspiring prose that has made him a bestselling author, Palmer explores five "habits of the heart" that can help us restore democracy's foundations as we nurture them in ourselves and each other:
- An understanding that we are all in this together
- An appreciation of the value of "otherness"
- An ability to hold tension in life-giving ways
- A sense of personal voice and agency
- A capacity to create community
Healing the Heart of Democracy is an eloquent and empowering call for "We the People" to reclaim our democracy. The online journal Democracy & Education called it "one of the most important books of the early 21st Century." And Publishers Weekly, in a Starred Review, said "This beautifully written book deserves a wide audience that will benefit from discussing it."
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About the Author
Table of ContentsIntroduction to the Paperback Edition xvii
Prelude The Politics of the Brokenhearted 1
Chapter i Democracy’s Ecosystem 11
Chapter ii Confessions of an Accidental Citizen 29
Chapter iii The Heart of Politics 49
Chapter iv The Loom of Democracy 69
Chapter v Life in the Company of Strangers 89
Chapter vi Classrooms and Congregations 119
Chapter vii Safe Space for Deep Democracy 151
Chapter viii The Unwritten History of the Heart 175
The author 219
Healing the Heart of Democracy Discussion Guide 237