Disagreeing strongly with others is fine, said Arthur Brooks. It’s even OK to be angry. The problem, he explained, is when that anger is mixed with disdain and turns into hatred or contempt. “Coercion and power will not carry the day… your only chance is persuasion.” Brooks was talking to a packed Beam Classroom in the Visual Arts Center. The evening forum, on November 7, 2019, was the culmination of a two-day visit, the first of two trips Brooks is making to Bowdoin this academic year as the first Joseph McKeen Visiting Fellow. Earlier this year Brooks stepped down after a decade as president of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), a conservative think tank based in Washington, DC. He now serves on the faculty of Harvard University, with a joint appointment between the Kennedy School and Harvard Business School. The forum was attended by a mix of Bowdoin students and faculty, and was moderated by Peter M. Small Associate Professor of Africana Studies and English Tess Chakkalakal and Associate Professor of History Page Herrlinger. Attendees were asked to read Brooks’ latest book Love Your Enemies: How Decent People Can Save America from the Culture of Contempt, and to watch...