a writer and teacher on American
civic culture and politics and a lecturer in political science at
Yale, is the author of The Closest of Strangers: Liberalism
and the Politics of Race in New York
(W.W. Norton, 1990)
and Liberal Racism
(Viking, 1997, Rowman &
Littlefield, 2002). His "civic-republican" philosophy, described in
his essay "Looking for America" at http://www.jimsleeper.com/?p=19
makes him a critic of both left-liberal racial politics and, more
recently, of neo-conservative national-security state
From 1988 to 1995 Sleeper was an editor and editorial board member
at New York Newsday
and the Daily
. As a political columnist for the Daily
for three years during and after the 1993 mayoral
campaign in which Rudolph Giuliani defeated the city’s first
African-American mayor, David Dinkins, Sleeper anticipated
Giuliani’s victory in a series of columns on the city’s changing
political culture. Since 2006 he has been an occasional blogger at
www.tpmcafe.com (Talking Points Memo Cafe), with columns on the
American news media, the 2008 American presidential election, and
Israel's war in Gaza. His "Obama Chronicles," posted originally in
TPM and Dissent, trace the arc of his own and others' rising
support for Obama during the 2008 campaign and are collected at his
website at http://www.jimsleeper.com/?p=11
His reportage and commentary have also appeared in Harper’s. The New Republic, The Nation, The New Yorker, The Washington Monthly,
Democracy Journal, and many
other publications. He has appeared on The News Hour with Jim
Lehrer, the Charlie Rose show, and National Public Radio
’s “Talk of the Nation
” and has been an
occasional commentator on NPR’s “All Things Considered
,” WNYC (New
York's NPR station), and Talking
Among his more noted recent columns,"Why Rudy Giuliani Really
Shouldn't Be President": 
. A column on how New York Times
columnist David Brooks mishandled the mortgage crisis: 
. Sleeper posted a noted series of
columns on Israel's Gaza War of 2008-2009, at
http://www.jimsleeper.com/?p=7. He was interviewed about his Gaza
columns on National Public Radio's New York station, WNYC, in
January, 2009 
. A broader range of his
published material is presented in thematic sections at
Sleeper is a member of the editorial board of the quarterly
Dissent, for which he edited In Search of New York
(1987), a special edition re-published by Transaction Books,
containing original essays by the quarterly’s founding editor,
, as well as by Ada Louise Huxtable
, Michael Harrington
, Alfred Kazin
, Jim Chapin, Paul Berman
, and many other notable
Massachusetts native and Yale College graduate (1969), Sleeper
holds a doctorate in education from Harvard (1977).
taught urban studies and writing at Harvard and, upon moving to New
York, at Queens Colleges and at New York University. In 1982-83 he
was a Charles Revson Fellow at Columbia University, studying urban
housing development. In 1998 he was a fellow at the Harvard’s
Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics, and Public Policy.
At Yale Sleeper has taught seminars on new conceptions of American
national identity and on journalism, liberalism, and democracy. He
is married to Seyla Benhabib
Eugene Meyer Professor of Political Science and Philosophy.
(Rowman & Littlefield, 2002)
(First edition published byViking/Penguin, 1997 and 1998).
The Closest of Strangers: Liberalism and the Politics of
Race in New York
(W. W. Norton & Co.), 1990; paperback
In Search of New York
(Transaction Books), 1988.
Editor. An anthology ofreportage, essays, reminiscences, and
photography that was a special issue of Dissent magazine in 1987.
Contributors include Irving Howe, Ada Louise Huxtable, Michael
Harrington, Jim Chapin, Paul Berman, and many others.
The New Jews'
(Vintage paperback), 1971.
Co-editor; essays by young religiousradicals of the time.
Chapters in Anthologies:
Orwell Into the Twenty-First Century
Cushman and John Rodden, eds.(Paradigm Press, 2005). Chapter:
“Orwell’s Smelly Little Orthodoxies – andOurs”
A Way Out
Owen Fiss, Joshua Cohen eds. (Princeton
U. Press, 2003); Essay,“Against Social Engineering,” a response to
an “urban removal” manifesto byYale Law Professor. Owen Fiss.
Stanley Renshon, ed. (Georgetown U.
Press, 2001). Essay:“American National Identity in a Post-national
Empire City: New York Through the Centuries
Kenneth Jackson and DavidDunbar, eds. (Columbia U. Press, October,
2002). Chapter: “Boodling,Bigotry, and Cosmopolitanism,” about New
York City in the late 1980s.
Post-Mortem: The O.J. Verdict
Jeffrey Abramson, editor (Basic Books, 1996).Essay, “Racial
Theater,” about the public staging of the O.J. trial.
The New Republic Guide to the Candidates, 1996
Andrew Sullivan, editor(Basic Books, 1996). Essay on Bill Bradley,
the non-candidate, and hisconcerns about civil society.
Blacks and Jews: Alliances and Arguments
Berman, editor (Delacorte,1995). Chapter: “The Battle for
Enlightenment at City College,” on CUNYProf. Leonard Jeffries and
Debating Affirmative Action
editor. (Dell, 1994). Essay,“Affirmative Action’s Outer
Michael Lerner, editor, 1992.
Essay, “Demagoguery inAmerica: Wrong Turns in the Politics of
Race.” (One of the early, classiccritiques of identity politics in
the American left.)