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Deva Woodly: Does Social Unrest Help or Hurt Democracy?

Dr. Deva R. Woodly
Dr. Deva Woodly

Deva Woodly talks about how social unrest affects the process of democracy.

Deva Woodly talks with HumanitiesND Director Brenna Gerhardt on social unrest and democracy. Deva R. Woodly, PhD is an Associate Professor of Politics at the New School who holds a PhD from the University of Chicago. She is the author of The Politics of Common Sense: How Social Movements Use Public Discourse to Change Politics and Win Acceptance (Oxford 2015). She has also held fellowships at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton as well as the Edmund J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard. Her research covers a variety of topics, from media & communication, to political understandings of economics, to race & imagination, & social movements. In each case, she focuses on the impacts of public discourse on the political understandings of social and economic issues as well as how those common understandings change democratic practice and public policy. Her process of inquiry is inductive, moving from concrete, real-world conditions to the conceptual implications of those realities. In all cases, she centers the perspective of ordinary citizens and political challengers with an eye toward how the demos impacts political action and shapes political possibilities. Her current book projects are Reckoning: #BlackLivesMatter and the Democratic Necessity of Social Movements, an examination of the ways that social movements re-politicize public life in times of political despair and What We Talk About When We Talk About the Economy, a broad investigation of American economic discourse and its implications for politics and policy in the post-Great Recession era.

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