Listen, Liberal: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People?

By Thomas Frank


From the bestselling author of What's the Matter With Kansas, a scathing look at the failures of liberal politics, a book that helps explain the shocking outcome of the 2016 presidential election

It is a widespread belief among liberals that if only Democrats can continue to dominate national elections, if only those awful Republicans are beaten into submission, the country will be on the right course.

But this is to fundamentally misunderstand the modern Democratic Party. Drawing on years of research and first-hand reporting, Frank points out that the Democrats have done little to advance traditional liberal goals: expanding opportunity, fighting for social justice, and ensuring that workers get a fair deal. Indeed, they have scarcely dented the free-market consensus at all. This is not for lack of opportunity: Democrats have occupied the White House for sixteen of the last twenty-four years, and yet the decline of the middle class has only accelerated. Wall Street gets its bailouts, wages keep falling, and the free-trade deals keep coming.

With his trademark sardonic wit and lacerating logic, Frank's Listen, Liberal lays bare the essence of the Democratic Party's philosophy and how it has changed over the years. A form of corporate and cultural elitism has largely eclipsed the party's old working-class commitment, he finds. For certain favored groups, this has meant prosperity. But for the nation as a whole, it is a one-way ticket into the abyss of inequality. In this critical election year, Frank recalls the Democrats to their historic goals-the only way to reverse the ever-deepening rift between the rich and the poor in America.


What makes Frank s book new, different and important is its offer of a compelling theory as to how and why the party of Jefferson, Jackson and Roosevelt is now so unlikely to champion the economic needs of everyday people. . . . In such a looking-glass world, "Listen, Liberal "is a desperately needed corrective. History News Network

In his new book, progressive commentator Thomas Frank says Democrats need to take a good long look in the mirror if they want answers to why blue-collar workers are feeling abandoned and even infuriated by what used to be their party. "New York Post"

Over the past four decades, Frank argues, the Democrats have embraced a new favorite constituency: the professional class the doctors, lawyers, engineers, programmers, entrepreneurs, artists, writers, financiers and other so-called creatives whose fetish for academic credentials and technological innovation has infected the party of the working class. . . . For that class, Frank argues, income and wealth inequality is not a problem but an inevitable condition. "Washington Post"

An astute dissection of contemporary Democratic politics that demonstrates, cogently and at times acidly, how the party lost the allegiance of blue-collar Americans. "Publisher s Weekly"

A tough and thought-provoking look at what s wrong with America . . . Frank puts forth an impressive catalog of Democratic disappointments, more than enough to make liberals uncomfortable. "Booklist"

Thomas Frank s new book "Listen, Liberal" documents a half-century of work by the Democratic elite to belittle working people and exile their concerns to the fringes of the party s platform. If the prevailing ideology of the Republican establishment is that of a sneering aristocracy, Democratic elites are all too often the purveyors of a smirking meritocracy that offers working people very little. "Huffington Post"

As with Frank s other books, "Listen, Liberal" is a piece of contemporary history that tells us not only what the powerful are up to, but how the trick is being pulled, with an admirable deployment of irony. . . . While his previous books are essentially about devils being devils, this one shows how the angels have fallen further than they realize. "Prospect" (UK)"

Praise for Thomas Frank s "Pity the Billionaire"

A spirited, acerbic, stylish exploration of the Republican resurrection. "The Boston Globe"

A feisty and galvanizing book. "San Francisco Chronicle"

Frank s wit is as sharp as ever. "The Washington Post"

Praise for "The Wrecking Crew"

Glorious . . . brilliant . . . leavened by an eye for the unexpected and the absurd. "Los Angeles Times"

Frank combines two things absent from most liberal commentary: muckraking reporting and satiric wit. "The New York Times Book Review"

Praise for "What s the Matter with Kansas?"

Scathing and high-spirited. "The New Yorker"

Dazzlingly insightful. "Chicago Tribune"

The year s most prescient political book. Frank Rich, "The New York Times""


  Choose a format

Price: $13.60/ea
LIST PRICE: $17.00

Bulk Paperback Non-returnable Discounts
Quantity Price Discount
1 - 24 $13.60 20%
25 - 99 $11.90 30%
100 - 499 $11.05 35%
500 - 999 $10.71 37%
ISBN: 9781250118134

About the Paperback

Publisher Picador USA
Publish date 03/14/2017
Pages 352
ISBN-13 9781250118134
ISBN-10 1250118131
Language English

Need 1000 or more?

Additional discounts may be available for print books. We also offer pricing for RETURNABLE orders. Please call 1-800-236-7323 or email us to request a quote.