“When There Is No Center Left, How Can We Rebuild It?”

Danielle S. Allen’s Talk during the 2016 Frontiers of Democracy Conference

Director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University and professor in Harvard’s Department of Government and Graduate School of Education, Danielle S. Allen recently gave a talk about political polarization and its possible remedy. While only a few opportunities exist for people holding different views to talk to each other in our political landscape, there is no center left. Allen highlighted her political friendship idea to rebuild the center, for which she has advocated over two decades. “In this polarized world, is building political friendship really a mission impossible?” she asks. Civic education is a centerpiece for this mission in the long-term; it is critical to encourage students to engage in policymaking processes, which is greatly diffused beyond the traditional political realm, and to think through important political issues. This talk was given on June 24, 2016 during the 2016 Frontiers of Democracy Conference held at Tufts University in Boston.  Watch Allen’s video, which follows.