Common Read


The Common Read/Common World program is excited to announce the 2021 - 2022 selection "So You've Been Publicly Shamed" by Jon Ronson.

Jon Ronson has travelled the world meeting recipients of high-profile public shamings. The shamed are people like us – people who, say, made a joke on social media that came out badly, or made a mistake at work. Once their transgression is revealed, collective outrage circles with the force of a hurricane and the next thing they know they’re being torn apart by an angry mob, jeered at, demonized, sometimes even fired from their job.

A great renaissance of public shaming is sweeping our land. Justice has been democratized. The silent majority are getting a voice. But what are we doing with our voice? We are mercilessly finding people’s faults. We are defining the boundaries of normality by ruining the lives of those outside it. We are using shame as a form of social control.

Simultaneously powerful and hilarious in the way only Jon Ronson can be, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed is a deeply honest book about modern life, full of eye-opening truths about the escalating war on human flaws – and the very scary part we all play in it.

If you plan on utilizing this work in any of your fall classes, or are interested in partnering on programs related to this selection please contact us at

For Faculty


Faculty teaching the book can order their desk copy from the publisher here.

The Marx Library resource page is available here.

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