The past four years have been among the most turbulent in our history—and would have been so even without a global pandemic and waves of nationwide protest against racism. How did we get here?
This September, The Atlantic and Simon & Schuster will release The American Crisis, a riveting, narrated collection drawn from the often prophetic journalism and commentary published by The Atlantic in recent years. The book is anchored by new essays by editor in chief Jeffrey Goldberg and staff writer Anne Applebaum, and includes writing by more than three dozen Atlantic staff writers and contributors, including Danielle Allen, Ta-Nehisi Coates, James Fallows, Drew Faust, Caitlin Flanagan, Emma Green, Yuval Noah Harari, Ibram X. Kendi, Adrienne LaFrance, Annie Lowrey, James Mattis, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Adam Serwer, and Ed Yong.
The American Crisis explores the factors that led us to the present moment: racial division, economic inequality, political dysfunction, the hollowing-out of government, the devaluation of truth, and the unique threat posed by the president. Today’s emergencies expose pathologies years in the making. Ultimately, the collection undertakes a damage assessment: what we’ve already lost, and what we still may lose.
As Goldberg writes in his introduction: “The story is larger than Donald Trump, and not simply because a grifter is actually powerless without an audience ready to be grifted. America, in recent years, has become unmoored from truths formerly self-evident—from the animating ideas of its creation, as articulated in our country’s founding documents.”
The American Crisis is out September 15.