Resources for... William & Mary
William & Mary W&M menu close William & Mary

Washington University, St. Louis Professor Taylor Carlson, ’14, and W&M’s Professor Jaime Settle influence new scholarship on political discourse.

New to the Government Department reading list: What Goes Without Saying: Navigating Political Discussion in America by Dr. Taylor Carlson, ’14, Washington University, St. Louis and Dr. Jaime Settle, William & Mary

What Goes Without Saying: Navigating Political Discussion in America

 Professors Carlson and Settles’ new book, What Goes Without Saying: Navigating Political Discourse in America, published by Cambridge University Press, examines why political conversations are uncomfortable for so many people. The current literature focuses on the structure of people's discussion networks and the frequency with which they talk about politics, but not the dynamics of the conversations themselves. Carlson and Settle investigate how Americans navigate these discussions in their daily lives, with particular attention to the decision-making process around when and how to broach politics. The authors use a multi-methods approach to unpack what they call the 4D Framework of political conversation: identifying the ways that people detect others' views, decide whether to talk, discuss their opinions honestly (or not), and determine whether they will repeat the experience in the future. Professor Settle commented that, “Taylor and I are thrilled that our book is finally in print. It represents the culmination of nearly a decade's worth of collaboration, and we hope the book will help shape the direction of the field in the decade that comes."

 Dr. Taylor Carlson, a 2014 graduate of William & Mary, began collaborating with Professor Settle when Dr. Carlson was still a student at William & Mary. Dr. Carlson is now an Assistant Professor at Washington University, St. Louis. Dr. Jaime Settle is the David and Carolyn Wakefield Term Associate Professor of Government at William & Mary. The director of the Social Networks and Political Psychology Lab and co-director of the Social Science Research Methods Center, Professor Settle also serves as Associate Chair of the Data Science Program.

 The Department of Government congratulates Professors Settle and Carlson on their newest achievement and recommends the book to all audiences.