On Being Unreasonable: Kirsty Sedgman (signed pre-order)

£14.99

Release date: February 2nd 2023

Manners, order and respect… these are all ideals we subscribe to. In opposed positions, we ought to be able to ‘agree to disagree’.

To collect your copy from the shop on release day, select ‘in-store pick-up’ at the checkout.

Description

Today’s world is built from structures of standards and reason, but it is imperative to ask who constructed these norms, and why. We are more divided than ever before-along lines of race, gender, class, disability-and it’s time to question who benefits the most. What if our propensity to measure human behaviour against rules and reason is actually more problematic than it might seem? Kirsty Sedgman shows how power dynamics and the social biases involved have resulted in a wide acceptance of what people should and shouldn’t do, but they create discriminatory realities and amount to a societal facade that is dangerous for genuine social progress.

From taking the knee to breastfeeding in public, from neighbourhood vigilantism to the Colston Four-and exploring ideas around ethics, justice, society, and equality along the way-Sedgman explores notions of civility throughout history up to now. On Being Unreasonable mounts a vital and spirited defence of why and how being unreasonable can help improve the world. It examines and parses the pros and cons of our rules around reason, but leaves us with the rousing question: What if behaving unreasonably at times might be the best way to bring about meaningful change that is long overdue?

Kirsty Sedgman is a cultural studies expert who specialises in audience experience and human behaviour. She has spent her career studying how we construct and maintain our competing value systems, working out how people can live side by side in the same world yet come to understand it in such totally different ways. Currently based at the University of Bristol, she has spoken about her research around the world, and has seen her work featured in outlets like BBC Front Row, the Times Literary Supplement, the Guardian, and the New York Times.
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