My current book project, The Bad Good Life, examines how the good life may inhibit the creation of a more just, equitable, and pluralist social order in the United States. Despite being a key feature of political life in the US, this sort of impasse has not received enough scrutiny. Feminist and queer theorists have shown that dominant notions of the good life reinforce social inequalities, but many have not detailed enough how impasses may be engaged. While political theorists have long elaborated the event as a spark of political change, few have attended to the impasses that block such events from happening. The Bad Good Life address these gaps by developing a concept of impasse through political, feminist and queer theory and an array of situations, including: antiblackness and the American Dream; neoliberal capitalism amidst climate change; US national identity in the face of the costs of global war; queerness and the normalization of intimacy; and settler colonialism in Hawaiʻi. My research finds that people hit an impasse when the good life exacts dire costs and makes impossible demands but still exerts a strong allure by discrediting other, potentially more desirable ways of living. Through impasse, The Bad Good Life helps to elucidate how dominant formations of race, sexuality, and nation manage to persist despite the powerful efforts of minoritized subjects to build alternative worlds. It reveals that efforts to pluralize society must contend with affective relationships to the good life.