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Wrath and Rage

There’s such a thing as righteous anger.

Supporters of anti-trans activist Chris Elston demonstrate against gender affirmation treatments and surgeries on minors, outside of Boston Childrens Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, on September 18, 2022. (Photo by JOSEPH PREZIOSO/AFP via Getty Images)

Wrath: America Enraged by Peter W. Wood (2021, Encounter Books), 256 pages.

“Doest thou well to be angry?” God asked the prophet Jonah. It is the same question that Peter Wood asks himself and his fellow populists. As an anthropologist, Wood has long been concerned with the subject of anger in America. In 2006, he published A Bee in the Mouth: Anger in America Now, examining the emergence of what he called “new anger.” Rather than a spontaneous emotional response, new anger was a cultivated, theatrical gesture of self-expression enacted to secure social recognition. In his latest work, Wood pays particular attention to political anger on right and left, and he encourages those angered by elite betrayal of the American people to use their passion constructively.


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