April 2015 Indie Next List
“This book both fascinated and terrified me with its insights into the increasing outrage to be found on social media and how careers and even lives can be quickly ruined by public forums. Ronson takes the concept further, exploring the history of public shaming, the nature of crowd 'madness,' why some people are unaffected by the process while others are devastated, and how Google searches make it hard to recover from the trauma. Not only will I recommend this book, but I will also ask people to come back and tell me what they think about the questions that are raised. This is a dialogue that needs to happen!”
— Ann Carlson, Waterfront Books, Georgetown, SC
From the internationally bestselling author of The Psychopath Test, a captivating and brilliant exploration of one of our world's most overlooked forces.
For the past three years, Jon Ronson has been immersing himself in the world of modern-day public shaming--meeting famous shamees, shamers, and bystanders who have been impacted. This is the perfect time for a modern-day Scarlet Letter--a radically empathetic book about public shaming, and about shaming as a form of social control. It has become such a big part of our lives it has begun to feel weird and empty when there isn't anyone to be furious about. Whole careers are being ruined by one mistake. A transgression is revealed. Our collective outrage at it has the force of a hurricane. Then we all quickly forget about it and move on to the next one, and it doesn't cross our minds to wonder if the shamed person is okay or in ruins. What's it doing to them? What's it doing to us?
Ronson's book is a powerful, funny, unique, and very humane dispatch from the frontline, in the escalating war on human nature and its flaws.