We live in an age where American political discourse has become highly antagonistic. Such hostile discourse may influence not just our politics but also our private lives, for the abrasiveness that we witness in political life can readily spill over into our homes, our schools, and the other realms that we inhabit. How can we resist the spread of such antagonism? This Essay makes two basic claims. First, it is important that we consider dialogue as both an individual phenomenon and as a community-based phenomenon. How we speak with one another is a function of both our individual proclivities and the norms of the communities that we inhabit. Second, we should attempt to cultivate communities of dialogue, islands of constructive discourse that resist the dominant trend in our political world toward increasingly belligerent language. In the short-run, such communities may help people solve problems more effectively and feel more connected to others. In the long-run, such communities may serve as an important foundation for social development.
Jonathan R. Cohen, Developing Communities of Dialogue, 20 Cardozo J. Conflict Resol. 105 (2019)