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The Only Super Power: Reflections on Strength, Weakness, and Anti-Americanism [NOOK Book]

Overview

In The Only Superpower: Reflections on Strength, Weakness, and Anti-Americanism, Paul Hollander examines anti-Americanism (including the relationship between the foreign and domestic varieties), American culture (especially mass culture), the lingering political and cultural influences of the 1960s, and the controversial relationship between the realms of the personal and the political. He also revisits the part played by hatred, and especially the scapegoating impulse, in social and political conflicts. The ...
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The Only Super Power: Reflections on Strength, Weakness, and Anti-Americanism

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Overview

In The Only Superpower: Reflections on Strength, Weakness, and Anti-Americanism, Paul Hollander examines anti-Americanism (including the relationship between the foreign and domestic varieties), American culture (especially mass culture), the lingering political and cultural influences of the 1960s, and the controversial relationship between the realms of the personal and the political. He also revisits the part played by hatred, and especially the scapegoating impulse, in social and political conflicts. The essays range widely, from Michael Moore's political celebrity, the American love for SUVs, and getting old in America to Islamic fanaticism and the aftermath of the fall of Eastern European communist systems.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Sociologist Hollander made his name dissecting the pathologies of anti-Americanism, but his scalpel has dulled in this uneven collection of essays. Anti-Americanism, he argues, is a form of bigotry like racism, sexism and anti-Semitism, most luridly exemplified by hate-filled Islamist terrorists and their Arab supporters. But his main target is American leftists of the "adversary culture," Noam Chomsky presiding, who, he contends, scapegoat America for the world's ills and reflexively side with its enemies. (Hollander himself cops to misgivings about America's infotainment culture and love of SUVs.) Many of these thin, repetitive pieces first appeared in publications like National Review and the online FrontPage, and are the weaker for preaching to the choir: lazy ironies abound-Michael Moore denounces rich people, but he's rich himself!-and the author often merely gestures at the excesses of left-wing ideologues rather than carefully rebutting them. That's too bad, because his intriguing thesis that discontent with modernity fuels anti-Americanism could stand fuller development. Hollander's oft-voiced wish that Americans would criticize themselves less and foreign tyrannies more seems wrongheaded; it's precisely the habit of searching self-criticism that distinguishes liberal democracies from their foes. (Nov.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780739131336
  • Publisher: Lexington Books
  • Publication date: 12/16/2008
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 302
  • File size: 425 KB

Meet the Author

Paul Hollander is Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and a center associate of the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies at Harvard University.
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Table of Contents


Chapter 1 Introduction: The Pleasures of Hate and the New Anti-Americanism
Chapter 2
Chapter I: The New Anti-Americanism
Chapter 3 1. Anti-Americanism and a World-Class Hate Crime
Chapter 4 2. Anti-Americanism: Murderous and Rhetorical
Chapter 5 3. The Politics of Envy
Chapter 6 4. Anti-Americanism and Moral Equivalence
Chapter 7
Chapter II: Americana
Chapter 8 5. Our Society and Its Celebrities
Chapter 9 6. Watching Celebrities
Chapter 10 7. Michael Moore: New Political Celebrity
Chapter 11 8. The Chronic Ailments of Television News
Chapter 12 9. Why Americans Like SUVs
Chapter 13 10. Stereotyping and the Decline of Common Sense
Chapter 14 11. An Islamic Requirement on Campus
Chapter 15 12. History Repeats Itself: Tawana Brawley and the Exotic Dancer at Duke
Chapter 16 13. Rehabilitating the Great Books: Literature and Life
Chapter 17 14. The Counterculture of the Heart
Chapter 18 15. Old and Busier Than Ever
Chapter 19 16. American Travelers to the Soviet Union
Chapter 20
Chapter III: Foreign Matters
Chapter 21 17. Alexander Yakovlev
Chapter 22 18. Violence of Higher Purpose
Chapter 23 19. The North Korean Gulag
Chapter 24 20. Admiring North Korea
Chapter 25 21. The Fiftieth Anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution
Chapter 26 22. Crossing the Moral Threshold and the Rejection of Communist Systems in Eastern Europe
Chapter 27 23. Ambivalent in Amsterdam
Chapter 28 24. Travel in the Peloponnesos
Chapter 29
Chapter IV: The Survival and Replenishment of the Adversary Culture
Chapter 30 25. The Resilience of the Adversary Culture
Chapter 31 26. The Chomsky Phenomenon
Chapter 32 27. The Banality of Evil and the Political Culture of Hatred
Chapter 33 28. The Left and the Palestinians
Chapter 34 29. The Personal and the Political in Lessing's Fiction
Chapter 35 30. Haven in Cuba
Chapter 36 31. Demystifying Marxism
Chapter 37 32. Public Intellectuals and the God that Failed
Chapter 38
Chapter V: In Conclusion
Chapter 39 33. From a Builder of Socialism to Free-Floating Intellectual: My Politically Incorrect Career in Sociology
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