Something has been going improper on many college campuses in the previous few years. Speakers are shouted down. Students and professors say they’re walking on eggshells and are afraid to talk honestly. Rates of tension, depression, and suicide are rising—on campus in addition to nationally. How did this occur?
First Amendment expert Greg Lukianoff and social psychologist Jonathan Haidt show how the brand new problems on campus have their origins in three terrible ideas that experience develop into more and more woven into American childhood and education: What doesn’t kill you makes you weaker; always agree with your feelings; and life is a battle between good folks and evil people. These three Great Untruths contradict basic psychological principles about well-being and ancient wisdom from many cultures. Embracing these untruths—and the resulting culture of safetyism—interferes with young folks’s social, emotional, and intellectual development. It makes it harder for them to develop into autonomous adults who may be able to navigate the bumpy road of life.
Lukianoff and Haidt investigate the numerous social trends that experience intersected to advertise the spread of those untruths. They explore changes in childhood such as the upward push of fearful parenting, the decline of unsupervised, child-directed play, and the brand new world of social media that has engulfed teenagers within the last decade. They read about changes on campus, including the corporatization of universities and the emergence of latest ideas about identity and justice. They situate the conflicts on campus throughout the context of The us’s hastily rising political polarization and dysfunction.
It is a book for any person who is at a loss for words by what is occurring on college campuses these days, or has children, or is concerned concerning the growing inability of Americans to live, work, and cooperate across party lines.