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Anti-Intellectualism in American Life

Anti-Intellectualism in American Life

Scritto da Richard Hofstadter

Narrato da Adam Verner


Anti-Intellectualism in American Life

Scritto da Richard Hofstadter

Narrato da Adam Verner

valutazioni:
4/5 (10 valutazioni)
Lunghezza:
16 ore
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Apr 18, 2017
ISBN:
9781541470774
Formato:
Audiolibro

Descrizione

This book throws light on many features of the American character. Its concern is not merely to portray the scorners of intellect in American life, but to say something about what the intellectual is, and can be, as a force in a democratic society.
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Apr 18, 2017
ISBN:
9781541470774
Formato:
Audiolibro


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Recensioni dei lettori

  • (5/5)
    An excellent history of intellectual life in the United States. Published in 1964 and more relevant today than it was then.
  • (5/5)
    This book seems in many parts, though published 50 years ago, to have been written yesterday. I'm not sure how to start summarizing it, so I won't try; I'll merely say that, having just finished it, it is going immediately into my "re-read" pile.
  • (3/5)
    859 Anti-intellectualism in American Life, by Richard Hofstadter (read 25 June 1966) (Pulitzer Nonfiction prize in 1964) I did no post-reading note but my memory is that I was not very enthused over this book.
  • (4/5)
    The most interesting parts were in the historical observations. The fifth part on anti-intellectualism in education, particularly concerning the state of secondary education seemed irrelevant; at least my experience as in the late 1980s, early 1990s followed the college prep structure Hofstadter advocated. I was raised Catholic so the part on religion, essentially American Protestantism, was also quite interesting.
  • (4/5)
    I couldn't finish this the first time I tried. Just wasn’t in the mood at the time. I thought it would be kind of interesting reading on whacked out stuff like the Know-Nothings, the KKK, nativism, the Birchers, and so on, but it turns out it’s mostly about the influence of Evangelicals on our politics and culture throughout American history. And I thought I wanted to know more about that too, but it turned out to be pretty boring in practice, so I dropped it, for now. I’ll finish eventually, because it feels like stuff I ought to know, in the light of current events.I ended up finishing this up a couple of years later. It was mostly good, but what he groups under anti-intellectualism gets a little too broad for my liking. I mean, that's the thesis and what the book is setting out to do, and most of it probably does count as anti-intellectual under a strict definition of the term, but it sort of rankled to see any form of populism or attempts at democratic participation in institutions getting lumped in with Bircher loons. I'm pretty sure he doesn't entirely mean to make those equivalencies, but it's sort of a problem with the project. When you start to make progressive and non-canon education look like it's somewhere on a continuum with Bircher wingnuttiness, something has gone wrong, category-wise. All that might fall under the rubrik of "anti-intellectual," but that's putting forward an awfully narrow and conservative idea of what "intellectual" is. Plenty of credible intellectuals were for the educational ideas and some of the other demo-populist social trends he covers, whereas you can't find many if any who were for the loonier stuff. I dunno, maybe I just had the wrong idea about what this book was setting out to do to begin with, as, like I said above, I thought it was going to focus much more on the really nasty nativist, racist, patriarchal, etc strands of American anti-intellectualism than it did.
  • (4/5)

    1 persona l'ha trovata utile

    A classic work on the dismissal of intellectual practices in America, differentiated from similar (but less prominent) movements in other parts of the world. The work was written during the Kennedy administration, when intellectualism was slightly in the ascendancy, so his viewpoint about the people who would not take over the world could have seemed valid at that time...there had been several periods where intellectuals were, if not truly valued, at least seen as useful. Since that time, however, it has all been a downhill slide, and the book could easily be written today without too much amendment (just cut and paste some of the chapters on the early 20th century into the early 21st century, update the names, and voila!). It is a vital corrective for anyone who thinks that the current period is somehow unique in American history and just arose out of the blue or even recently. It is the culmination of a thread of anti-intellectualism that has been present in the country since the beginning - before the founders, even. The main complaints are with the length - there is a lot of redundancy that could be shaved out, and that would make it a slightly easier read for people who do not read 400+ page books but could benefit from reading this one. The main other complaint is that books written during this period share a common fallacy - the idea that people were men, and that there were only a few women scattered through history who made contributions. Even in 1963, this was a bit outdated of a worldview, and it grates. Otherwise, a well written, well researched, and important work.

    1 persona l'ha trovata utile