The forces aligned against the individual in our current sociopolitical moment are staggering. Even as our society seems poised to embrace a more expansive concept of inclusion and diversity, the backlash of misogyny, homophobia, racism, and xenophobia has grown in response. It is difficult to look at the events of recent months and not conclude that we live in a culture defined by conflict. One of the most urgent conflicts we face today as a society is between individuals attempting to inhabit a unique sense of their own identity and a significant portion of society that denies, in increasingly violent ways, both that individual’s identity and their right to claim it. This conflict—between prejudice and inclusion, the clash of cultures and the fractured totality they create—has sadly become the narrative of our country. But it is arguably also the narrative of human history. In...

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