Skip to main content

30% Off New Releases: Explore the List

Harvard University Press - home
The Wolf at the Door

The Wolf at the Door

The Menace of Economic Insecurity and How to Fight It

Michael J. Graetz, Ian Shapiro

ISBN 9780674260429

Publication date: 11/02/2021

“Deep, informed, and reeks of common sense.”
—Norman Ornstein

“It is now beyond debate that rising inequality is not only leaving millions of Americans living on a sharp edge but also is threatening our democracy…For activists and scholars alike who are struggling to create a more equitable society, this is an essential read.”
—David Gergen

We are in an age of crisis. That much we can agree on. But a crisis of what, exactly? And how do we get out of it?

In a follow up to their influential and much debated Death by a Thousand Cuts, Michael Graetz and Ian Shapiro focus on what really worries people: not what the rich are making or the government is taking from them but their own insecurity. Americans are worried about losing their jobs, their status, and the safety of their communities. They fear the wolf at the door. The solution is not protectionism or class warfare but better jobs, higher wages, greater protection for families suffering from unemployment, better health insurance, and higher quality childcare. And it turns out those goals are more achievable than you might think. The Wolf at the Door is one of those rare books that doesn’t just diagnose our problems, it shows how to address them.

“This is a terrific book, original, erudite, and superbly well-informed, and full of new wisdom about what might and what might not help the majority of Americans who have not shared in our growing prosperity, but are left facing the wolf at the door…Everyone interested in public policy should read this book.”
—Angus Deaton, Princeton University

“Graetz and Shapiro wrestle with a fundamental question of our day: How do we address a system that makes too many Americans anxious that economic security is slipping out of reach? Their cogent call for sensible and achievable policies…should be read by progressives and conservatives alike.”
—Jacob J. Lew, former Secretary of the Treasury

Praise

  • Graetz and Shapiro wrestle with a fundamental question of our day: How do we address a system that makes too many Americans anxious that economic security is slipping out of reach? Their cogent call for sensible and achievable policies offers a pathway back to functional governance and should be read by progressives and conservatives alike.

    —Jacob J. Lew, former Secretary of the Treasury

Authors

  • Michael J. Graetz is a professor of law at Columbia University and professor emeritus at Yale Law School who has served in various posts in the Department of the Treasury. He is the author of several books on the politics and economics of public policy, including, with Ian Shapiro, Death by a Thousand Cuts: The Fight over Taxing Inherited Wealth.
  • Ian Shapiro is Sterling Professor of Political Science at Yale University. His recent books include Politics against Domination and, with Frances Rosenbluth, Responsible Parties: Saving Democracy from Itself.

Book Details

  • 368 pages
  • 5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press

Recommendations