The Canceling of the American Mind

The Canceling of the American Mind

How Cancel Culture Undermines Trust, Destroys Institutions, and Threatens Us All


Why bother refuting your opponents, when you can just take away their platform or career?

Greg Lukianoff was one of the first to raise the alarm about the troubling social and psychological consequences of the growing intolerance of opposing viewpoints on university campuses in America; a phenomenon which then swept through the English-speaking world.

In this new book, he teams up with Rikki Schlott to show how this trend has spread to a wide range of workplaces and cultural spaces, which are giving up on a culture of free speech in favour of cancel culture. Drawing on original research and data, along with hundreds of new examples from publishing to psychotherapy, comedy, science and medicine, this book shows how the left and the right both work to silence their enemies in different ways. It's not simply a matter of Twitter spats; people are losing their jobs, livelihoods and sometimes their lives over it.

Eye-opening, urgent and transformative, The Canceling of the American Mind argues that cancel culture is not merely a moral panic, but a dysfunctional way in which people battle for power, status and dominance: moving us away from being able to argue productively, listen generously and ultimately be civil when we disagree. This book offers concrete steps towards reclaiming a culture of free speech, with materials specifically tailored for parents, teachers, business leaders and all those who use social media. It shows how we can all harness intellectual humility to become more resilient and open minded.


  • No one has documented the facts and causes of this alarming trend more thoroughly than Greg Lukianoff, joined here by a collaborator, Rikki Schlott
    Steven Pinker, author of Rationality

About the authors

Greg Lukianoff

Greg Lukianoff is a lawyer, First Amendment expert and President of the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression. He is the co-author of The Coddling of the American Mind and the author of Unlearning Liberty and Freedom From Speech.
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Rikki Schlott

Rikki Schlott is a journalist and political commentator. She is a columnist at the New York Post and co-host of the Lost Debate podcast, as well as a former research fellow at the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression.
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