Hyrum Lewis, a graduate of BYU-Idaho and a professor of History and International Studies at the school, has worked in public accounting and he taught at Skidmore College for a year. He began teaching at BYU-I in 2008 as he followed his passion for history.

Lewis spoke on May 18 to give his opinion on American politics and to talk about the book he recently wrote. About 50 students and faculty were present to listen to him.

He said the book was a long time coming.

“Ever since I was little I’ve been bothered by issues of politics,” Lewis said. “It’s one of those things where you write the book you want to read.”

Growing up, he was always skeptical concerning what he was told about politics. His curious and dubious nature became more prevalent over the years, leading him to write his novel. 

“‘The Myth of Left and Right’ diminishes the idea that there is only one issue in politics,” Lewis said. “We use a political spectrum to describe politics and put people on this line. A line has only one dimension and a one-dimensional model can only house one issue, so people are saying there’s only one issue in politics.”

The Myth of Left and Right by Hyrum Lewis and Verlan Lewis. Photo credit: Isabel Igwe.
The Myth of Left and Right by Hyrum Lewis and Verlan Lewis. Photo credit: Isabel Igwe.

He talked extensively on this and spoke about how advanced the other realms of society are. He argued that there’s a regression in politics and that one of the reasons people have it all wrong is because of their perspective on it.

“We use political spectrums to define politics,” Lewis said. “If we need it to be more effective we have to get rid of the spectrum.”

Marcia Garcia, a junior studying biology who attended the session, said she agreed with the professor.

“There’s something wrong in politics,” Garcia said. “It shouldn’t be this hard. The political dysfunction is intense. We just need a normal democracy.”

Lewis concluded the meeting with a Q&A section and stated that politics would be better if issues were spoken of and dealt with individually.

A number of books on display. Photo credit: Isabel Igwe.
A number of books on display. Photo credit: Isabel Igwe.