Politics: A Survivor’s Guide: How to Stay Engaged without Getting Enraged (Paperback)
  • Politics: A Survivor’s Guide: How to Stay Engaged without Getting Enraged (Paperback)
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Politics: A Survivor’s Guide: How to Stay Engaged without Getting Enraged (Paperback)

(author)
£10.99
Paperback 416 Pages
Published: 07/03/2024
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Waterstones Says

The respected political commentator and foreign correspondent presents an invaluable guide to the toxic state of politics and what we can all do to improve the current malaise.

We live in an age of fury and confusion. A new crisis erupts before the last one has finished: financial crisis, Brexit, pandemic, war in Ukraine, inflation, strikes. Prime Ministers come and go but politics stays divided and toxic.

It is tempting to switch off the news, tune out and hope things will get back to normal. Except, this is the new normal, and our democracy can only work if enough people stay engaged without getting enraged. But how?

To answer that question, award-winning journalist Rafael Behr takes the reader on a personal journey from despair at the state of politics to hope that there is a better way of doing things, with insights drawn from three decades as a political commentator and foreign correspondent.

Publisher: Atlantic Books
ISBN: 9781838955069
Number of pages: 416
Weight: 357 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 30 mm
Edition: Main


MEDIA REVIEWS

I couldn't love Rafael Behr's writing more. This is a beautifully written journey through personal and political history that leads you to a wonderful place: hope. Passionate, clever, and often very funny, you couldn't wish for a more eloquent guide to the landscape of the permacrisis. But as well as being able to explain how things got broken, Behr helps you believe that they can be fixed - and that there is, meantime, a way to stay sane along the way. - Marina Hyde

If you want to understand what turned British politics toxic there is no better guide - or antidote. - David Baddiel

Rafael Behr's writing always illuminates even the most complicated of political chaos and this book does this and so much more: it explains our entire era and how we can bear it. Enlightening, entertaining and a delight to read. - Hadley Freeman

I'm telling you it is a must-read. Quite apart from the subject matter, Rafael Behr is such an elegant writer. - Nigella Lawson

A wonderful meditation on populism, nationalism, politics and truth - rich with imaginative aphorisms, alert to the most unusual connections across time and space - weaving the personal and the global - a great work of political analysis. - Rory Stewart, The Rest Is Politics podcast's Non-Fiction Book of the Year

For too many of us, politics has become an exercise in anguish. And few people have absorbed and endured as much toxicity and despair as political writer Rafael Behr, who in recent years has found himself documenting a national nervous breakdown at the same time as experiencing a near-fatal cardiac crisis. The resulting book could have been solipsistic, but it's not. As Behr rehabilitates physically, he does so intellectually and politically too, producing a book which is at once hopeful, restorative, universal and true. It feels like political Prozac. - Sathnam Sanghera, bestselling author of EMPIRELAND

Fascinating and hugely enjoyable, it reassured me that I'm not going mad and any book which does that is appreciated. Wide-ranging and ludicrously readable, eminently thoughtful and sane. - Robert Webb

How can we still care about politics without being driven to despair or madness? This is an urgent question for citizens everywhere and Rafael Behr answers it with both passion and panache in this wonderfully engaging book. Written with all the verve and wit that make Behr one of the great stylists of contemporary journalism, thisis an invigorating, illuminating and hopeful lesson in how to take politics personally. - Fintan O'Toole, Irish Times columnist and author of HEROIC FAILURE: BREXIT AND THE POLITICS OF PAIN

Clear and courageous, Behr stands up for freedom in a world that wants to suffocate it. And he is further distinguished by his fine style. - Matthew Parris, The Times columnist

There are few more elegant writers about politics in the English language than Rafael Behr. With his trademark command of arresting metaphor, he probes our current democratic condition with insight, empathy and wit. The result is a book whose wisdom runs very deep. - Jonathan Freedland, bestselling author of THE ESCAPE ARTIST

The melding of his own near-death experience, a poignant, family history and a profound analysis of four decades of political conflict shouldn't belong in the same volume; but Rafael Behr's lucid prosemakes this seem like the only way to tell the story. The most stirring riposte to political extremism and shallowness that I've read in recent years. - Sir Trevor Phillips

Beautifully written, interweaving the personal with the political throughout, this book reminds us why democracy matters and what it will take to preserve it. - Noreena Hertz, economist and author of THE LONELY CENTURY: A CALL TO RECONNECT

This is what great political journalism should be like: wise, witty, tough, unflinching, honest and dare I say it, compassionate too. - Professor Michael Ignatieff, author of FIRE AND ASHES: SUCCESS AND FAILURE IN POLITICS

A sharp, informed, elegant journey through twenty-first century politics. If you're struggling to understand our political times this is the book for you. Rafael Behr is a brilliant guide to the frustrations of our political age. - Gary Gibbon, Political Editor, Channel 4 News

Writing to die for, insights aplenty, wisdom by the bucketload: Behr's book is a real must-read for anyone interested in the past, present and future of British politics. - Prof Tim Bale

Rafael Behr diagnoses the symptoms of the illness which has infected our discourse, and offers up an antidote that is both personal and political. The perfect prescription for anyone who has found the last few years heartbreaking. - Matt Chorley, Times Radio

A thoughtful, sensitive and deeply personal prescription for restoring sanity to our politics. Rafael Behr offers a heart attack survivor's guide to preventing the coronaries in British politics. - Robert Shrimsley, chief political editor and UK editor at large of The Financial Times

It is distressingly rare to find convincing defences of liberal democracy against the twin challenges of populism and nationalism. Rafael Behr does the job perfectly. - John Peet, Political and Brexit Editor, The Economist

Behr is a brilliant stylist whose writing is full of quotable sentences and sharp analogies. - Guardian

[Behr] writes with elegance and honesty and his judgements are balanced. - Observer

Behr is a lucid writer, peppering his prose with moments of rich reporting. He enjoys playing with concepts and neologisms. - Times Literary Supplement

An elegant diagnosis of the chronic condition facing contemporary politics - the strains on democracy - and a prescription for restoring its health. - Irish Examiner

Both a cool, irresistibly argued analysis of Britain's lurch towards popularism culminating the country's sleepwalk to Brexit, and a memoir about how the country's politics turned being Jewish from a private, incidental thing into a frontline issue. - Jewish Chronicle

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