The Pernicious Nature of Identity Politics

A Common Sense Society member dinner with senior fellow Dr. Joshua Mitchell

Event Overview

Over the last twenty years, introducing ourselves to one another has become complicated. Do you state your name? Your nationality? Your political affiliation? Increasingly, it is not enough to define yourself as a member of a large group. Rather, the previous, seemingly inoffensive large groups are being subdivided into many small groups, such that you can pinpoint your place along the oppressor-oppressed continuum. How did we get here and what are the philosophical and religious struggles that identity politics is trying to resolve?

Please join your fellow Common Sense Society members for a dinner and conversation led by Marion Smith and senior fellow Dr. Joshua Mitchell, whose most recent book is American Awakening: Identity Politics and Other Afflictions of Our Time.

The dinner will be held in Old Town Alexandria. Refreshments begin at 6:00 P.M. and the dinner will follow.

Please confirm your attendance by reaching out to Alex Pack at by September 29.


Old Town Alexandria, VA

Featured Speaker

A photo of Joshua Mitchell, Ph.D.

Joshua Mitchell, Ph.D.

Dr. Joshua Mitchell is a senior fellow at Common Sense Society and a professor of political theory at Georgetown University. From 2002 to 2005, he was the chair of Georgetown’s government department and he was the associate dean of faculty affairs at the School of Foreign Service in Qatar from 2005 to 2006. Since 2005, he has taught courses there periodically for several years. During the 2008-10 academic years, Dr. Mitchell took leave from Georgetown, and became the acting chancellor of The American University of Iraq—Sulaimani. His areas of interest range from the ancient world to contemporary America and Europe. His thinking has been deeply informed by the nineteenth-century writer, Alexis de Tocqueville, who anticipated the problem of loneliness and isolation in the modern world, and who thought that to combat it, families, churches, and other mediating institutions would be needed, along with a commercial spirit aimed at producing well-being. Dr. Mitchell received a Ph.D. and M.A. in political science from the University of Chicago, an M.A. in sociology from the University of Washington, and a B.G.S. from the University of Michigan. He has published articles in The Review of Politics, The Journal of Politics, The Journal of Religion, APSR, and Political Theory.

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