BOOKS. David...

BOOKS. David Brooks argues that one indicator that conservatism is running out of steam is a distinct paucity of "big, impactful books" on the right. He reminisces about the good ol' days, the 80's and 90's, when George Gilder, Alan Bloom, Charles Murray, and others were writing books that fundamentally shifted how conservatives viewed the world. Such books aren't being released lately, he laments.

Well, truth be told, my knowledge of conservative publishing is rather sparse, so I've little more than a suspicion that he's right. But is the left any different? Over the past ten years, and certainly over the past five, it would be simple to point out titles that changed how the left views politics. Books like What's The Matter With Kansas, Don't Think of an Elephant, and even Crashing the Gate offered fairly fundamental insights into the depressing electoral realities facing Democrats. But eliminating the strategic, have there been any really important books for how the left views the world or its problems? If a young liberal came to you and asked for the few titles that would truly change her intellectual outlook, what would you recommend?

--Ezra Klein