Rich, Free, and Miserable: The Failure of Success in America

Rich, Free, and Miserable: The Failure of Success in America

by John Brueggemann
     
 

"This book is a searing indictment of the invasion of market thinking into every corner of American life, including areas where market considerations should never be primary, as when we hear about áthe health industry' or áthe education industry.' John Brueggemann points out that market pressures undermine moral commitments dear to liberals and

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Overview

"This book is a searing indictment of the invasion of market thinking into every corner of American life, including areas where market considerations should never be primary, as when we hear about áthe health industry' or áthe education industry.' John Brueggemann points out that market pressures undermine moral commitments dear to liberals and conservatives alike. It is a badly needed book and deserves a wide and diverse audience."---Robert Bellah, University of California, Berkeley; coauthor of Habits of the Heart" "Cultural and political conservatives rail against the loss of civility, morality, and family values while simultaneously celebrating its principal cause---the individualist, materialist, and competitive free market. This book sets the record straight, with prose that is powerful, engaging, and contemporary. People who long for civility and community should turn off their iPods, cell phones, and laptops and read this book." ---Barry Schwartz, Swarthmore College; author of The Paradox of Choice" "Compared to much of the rest of the world, America and its citizens are rich. But many people are also deeply miserable---at work, at home, or both. In this provocative book, John Brueggemann unpacks why so many people are struggling, both emotionally and financially, in a nation that looks so prosperous on the surface" From a hospital patient reduced to a balance sheet to a parent working such long hours that he misses dinner, Brueggemann argues that market thinking has permeated every corner of our lives. In the pursuit of more and better, relationships erode to the detriment of individuals, communities, and the nation as a whole. Rich, Free, and Miserable not only outlines these pressing social problems, but also offers practical suggestions for people looking to make a positive change.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442200937
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
09/16/2010
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
244
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

1 Introduction 1

2 Missing the Forest and Most of the Trees: What's Useful and What's Not in Current Conversations 13

3 Social Change and Continuity in U.S. History 33

4 Triumph of the Market 65

5 Economic Life: Winning the Rat Race 81

6 Civic Life: Cool iPods, Rolling Stops, and Fighting Dads 101

7 Family Life: Frenzy and Atomization 119

8 Resetting the Moral Compass 141

Notes 155

Bibliography 201

Index 229

About the Author 233

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