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The space between the personal and the political has completely collapsed and a hyperpolarized media is to blame. The constant political hostility spreads from the news to punditry to consumer culture to classrooms and to our personal lives. Dagnes asks the question: How did the modern American political media become so polarized? Dagnes answers this question by providing and overview of the four primary causes for the partisan media we have today. First, there has been decades of institutional demonization against academics, the media, and the government itself. The slow buildup of the opposition to these institutions has resulted in massive public distrust and provided fertile ground for the current political antagonism. Technology has changed the media, allowing us constant, immediate, and endless communication and has increased the monetization potential of the media. Competitive financial imperatives have shifted to a highly emotional communication system, emphasizing how people are feeling, versus how they are thinking. Finally, the hyper-partisan media is both a cause and result of a larger polarized political climate. Americans are insulating themselves in their political lives, which now stretch from elections into their social media feeds. As Americans continue to shield themselves from information that they find disagreeable, our intolerance increases and our disdain for our neighbors grows.
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- Two Truths
Dr. Alison Dagnes
- Chapter 1
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