Discussion Questions

  1. What story impacted you the most? 
  2. What is a stranger? Does the author define the term?
  3. How do you view strangers? Do you “default to truth?”
  4. Have you ever been deceived by a stranger? What was that experience like?
  5. Should people be prosecuted for being deceived, as in the Sandusky case and the Larry Nassar case?
  6. What problems does the author identify in our society? 
  7. Do you agree with the author’s statement of the problem and assessment of human behavior?
  8. Are the author’s explanations of why things happen sufficient? Do they take into account all factors?
  9. Does the author tell the whole story in his case studies? What’s missing?
  10. What elements regarding power, gender, sexual orientation, or race does this book leave out? What role do these factors play?
  11. Do you think the author achieved his stated goal “to find out how to fix” the “strategies we as a society use to translate one another’s words and intentions?”
  12. What does our future as a society look like? Does this book change the way you will behave?
  13. Has this book changed the way you see strangers? Has it changed the way you see yourself?
  14. How has Talking to Strangers affected your views on what happened with Sandra Bland? What do you think about her story as the main focus of the book?