The left needs its own story of American greatness

Victory for the left will not just require votes at the ballot box in three weeks. It also demands the creation — or resurrection — of a national myth that stands counter to Make American Great Again.

Over the past 40 years, revisionist scholars have challenged the notion of American exceptionalism: the idea that America is a white, Christian nation with a special destiny as a beacon to the world. Their deconstruction of American mythology has reshaped academia and found comfortable acceptance in the secular left, but it has also created a significant void. We have not replaced this mythology with one that reflects the stories we have uncovered.

This failure brings peril. Humans have always resorted to myths — narrative stories — to understand collective identity, and if academics are not writing them, then Fox News will.