Despite this text's range of authors and contributors, including Henry Giroux and Noam Chomsky, the book's main thrust is social psychological. It surveys recent writing and research that outlines and seeks to explain why the US is an outlier among affluent (principally European) nations in its minimalist approach to social programs and policies to mitigate poverty. Though recognizing that racism, i.e., the popular view that “redistribution favors racial minorities,” has always infested policy choices and that the US “political system is geared towards preventing redistribution,” the authors emphasize individualism as the force that explains cross-national differences. This ideology is reinforced by an “underdeveloped non-individualistic vocabulary” and an unpopular sociological counter-narrative. System-justification research is cited to explain why “low-income and working-class people endorse hierarchy-enhancing beliefs that go against their own self-interest,” a concept also explored in Thomas Frank's What’s the Matter with Kansas? (2004). . . its many voices make this a useful text that raises fundamental questions about inequality beliefs. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through graduate students.