America on the Edge: Henry Giroux on Politics, Education, and Culture

Overview

For more than 20 years Henry Giroux has challenged readers to address the political exploitation and manipulation of American youth. Now, this compelling new book offers a comprehensive selection of Giroux's best works. From his most influential classics to new, never before published essays, America on the Edge offers an overview of Giroux's philosophies throughout his career. From his classic subjects, such as education and democracy and media and youth culture, to revolutionary new views on terrorism, ...

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Overview

For more than 20 years Henry Giroux has challenged readers to address the political exploitation and manipulation of American youth. Now, this compelling new book offers a comprehensive selection of Giroux's best works. From his most influential classics to new, never before published essays, America on the Edge offers an overview of Giroux's philosophies throughout his career. From his classic subjects, such as education and democracy and media and youth culture, to revolutionary new views on terrorism, globalization, and morality, this book is essential for all Giroux fans and educators alike. Henry Giroux provides a series of brilliant and provocative essays on the rise of authoritarianism in America, the rise of religious fundamentalism, the crisis of youth, the militarizing of public space, the politics of the Abu Ghraib prison scandal, the rise of the corporate university, the rise of Orwellian newspeak in the media, the emergence of a hard-boiled masculinity in popular culture, and what it means to reclaim hope in dark times. These essays combine important social issues with an accessible and clear language of historical understanding, critique, and possibility. Giroux argues that the United States is in the midst of a political crisis that is slowly undermining the foundation of democratic politics, culture, and education. He also argues that the crisis of politics is matched by a crisis of imagination and that if democracy is going to survive it is imperative to both rethink the nature of democracy while refashioning a new political language and cultural politics capable of both stopping the current turban toward authoritarianism and reclaiming the possibilities of a substantive democracy.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"America on the Edge is an enormously important book—perhaps Giroux's most comprehensive and hard-hitting analysis of the juggernaut of cultural repression that distorts our lives as citizens and renders many of our children socially expendable. Written with a potent mix of shrewd analysis and passionate morality, this dynamic and sophisticated work should stir a social outcry, particularly in the threatened realm of academia. I hope it's widely read."—Jonathan Kozol

"These essays are Giroux at his best, analyzing and criticizing the changing organizations of power in the United States and their effects on the larger world, and calling out to anyone who will listen that that world is possible."—Lawrence Grossberg, author of Caught in the Crossfire: Kids, Politics and America's Future

"Here Henry Giroux is at his most lucid, stripping the veil of illusion to reveal the multiple hypocrisies at the core of contemporary American society. His solutions to this devastating moment rest in a deep commitment to education, critical thinking, and the potential to revitalize democracy within an energized public sphere."—Carol Becker, Dean of Faculty, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, author of Surpassing the Spectacle: Global Transformations and the Changing Politics of Art

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781403971609
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 4/1/2006
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Henry A. Giroux holds the Global TV Network Chair Professorship at McMaster University. His previous books with Palgrave include The Abandoned Generation: Democracy Beyond the Culture of Fear and Take Back Higher Education (with Susan Giroux).

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Henry Giroux on Critical Pedagogy and the Responsibilities of the Public Intellectual: Interviews with Marcia Morales, Mike Pozo & Sina Rahmani
Part I: America under Siege: Authoritarianism & Democracy
The Conservative Assault on America
• Democracy and the Crisis of Public Education
• From Auschwitz to Abu Ghraib: Rethinking Representation as Public Pedagogy * Part II: Against Fundamentalism: Resisting Religious Extremism and Market Orthodoxy
The Passion of the Right: Religious Fundamentalism and the Crisis of Democracy
• Academic Entrepreneurs: The Corporate Takeover of Higher Education
Part III: Rethinking Political and Cultural Literacy
Orwellian Newspeak and the Crisis of Democracy
• The Abandoned Generation: The Urban Debate League and the Politics of Possibility
• Movies and Public Pedagogy: Film as Cultural Politics
Part IV: Race, Surveillance, and Social Justice
Spectacles of Race and Pedagogies of Denial
• Racial Injustice and Disposable Youth in the Age of Zero Tolerance* Part V: Militarization, Masculinity, and the Spectre of Fascism
Waging War On Democracy: The Militarizing of Public Space
• Brutalized Bodies and Emasculated Politics: Fight Club
Part VI: Youth, Pedagogy, and the Politics of Hope
Heroin Chic, Consumerism, and the Politics of Seduction
• Reclaiming Education and Hope in Dark Times
• Translating the Future

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2011

    Highly Recommended - a must read ALL!!

    In his latest book, "America on the Edge" (2006), Giroux tackles issues motivating "Critical Pedagogy" with the fervor of a man immersed in reform. Giroux links the influences of social injustice, right wing politics, and cultural racism to deficiencies and misconceptions in education, government, and society. The impact on Giroux by the late Brazilian educator and influential theorist of critical pedagogy, Paulo Freire (1921-1997), is evident throughout the text in Girouxs' passion to educate the reader of the complex correlations of issues in education, government, and society. "America on the Edge" is comprised of an interview of Giroux along with a compilation of fifteen essays written by Giroux. In the interview entitled Henry Giroux on Critical Pedagogy and the Responsibilities of the Public Intellectual, the interviewers Moralas, Pazo, and Rahmani address such controversial issues as sexist racism, school reform, and America Hegemony, which are answered by Giroux in his renowned, energetic and committed voice. The interviewers look into Girouxs' past and focus on projects such as The Mouse that Roared, a look into the influence of Disney on the construct of children's views of society. The interview then goes on to encompass questions pertaining to many of Giroux' present ideologies. The fifteen essays are organized into six areas of concentration: 1) American Democracy; 2) Religion; 3) Media Pedagogy; 4) Race & Social Justice; 5) Militarization - Masculinity and Fascism; and 6) Youth Pedagogy. I will concentrate on three of Girouxs essays in this review. In the essay entitled The Conservative Assault on America: Cultural Politics, Education, and the New Authoritarianism, Giroux highlights the rise of right wing ideology during the Regan administration and the use of the state to suppress and admonish marginalized groups instead of trying to uncover a way to improve their status of existence. The 1990's were the Clinton years, and Clinton's neoliberal views placed economic above democratic politics and corporate interests above public consideration (pp. 23). George W. Bush was elected in 2000, and the democracy was considerably destabilized. Flexibility was the new motto, which basically meant that nothing had to be fixed, stable, or protected. The Bush policies left the market economy unchecked by political power. Giroux highlights media pedagogical issues in the essay entitled Breaking into the Movies: Film as Cultural Politics. Girouxs experience with films, from a young man to present, has left an enduring mark on his consciousness, allowing him the ability to view media's role in society from his own unique lens. Giroux, (2006) states, "Films do more than entertain; they offer up subject positions, mobilize desires, influence us unconsciously, and help to construct the landscape of American culture." Race relations are addressed by Girouxs essay entitled Racial Politics, Individualism, and the Collapse of the Social. Giroux references W.E.B. Dubois The Souls of Black Folks as a starting point for race relations, and racial expression over the years have not lessened but have transformed into different roles, taking on new and more concealed modes of expression. Democracy in the United States is intrinsically "linked" to the outcomes of racial politics and policies. Girouxs "America on the Edge" is a "must read" for any Graduate class in the field of education. The issues and topics brought together

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