There's never been a better time to be outside the consensus -- and if you don't believe it, then peer into these genre-defining essays from The Baffler , the magazine that's been blunting the cutting edge of American culture and politics for a quarter of a century.Read more...
There's never been a better time to be outside the consensus -- and if you don't believe it, then peer into these genre-defining essays from The Baffler, the magazine that's been blunting the cutting edge of American culture and politics for a quarter of a century. Here's Thomas Frank on the upward-falling cult of expertise in Washington, D.C., where belonging means getting the major events of our era wrong. Here's Rick Perlstein on direct mail scams, multilevel marketing, and the roots of right-wing lying. Here's John Summers on the illiberal uses of innovation in liberal Cambridge, Massachusetts. And here's David Graeber sensing our disappointment in new technology. (We expected teleportation pods, antigravity sleds, and immortality drugs. We got LinkedIn, which, as Ann Friedman writes here, is an Escher staircase masquerading as a career ladder.)
Packed with hilarious, scabrous, up to-the-minute criticism of the American comedy, No Future for You debunks "positive thinking" bromides and business idols. Susan Faludi debunks Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg's phony feminist handbook, Lean In. Evgeny Morozov wrestles "open source" and "Web 2.0" and other pseudorevolutionary meme-making down to the ground. Chris Lehmann writes the obituary of the Washington Post, Barbara Ehrenreich goes searching for the ungood God in Ridley Scott's film Prometheus, Heather Havrilesky reads Fifty Shades of Grey, and Jim Newell investigates the strange and typical case of Adam Wheeler, the student fraud who fooled Harvard and, unlike the real culprits, went to jail.
No Future for You offers the counternarrative you've been missing, proof that dissent is alive and well in America. Please be warned, however. The writing that follows is polemical in nature. It may seek to persuade you of something.
Copublished with The Baffler.
ContributorsChris Bray, Mark Dancey, Barbara Ehrenreich, Susan Faludi, Thomas Frank, Ann Friedman, James Griffioen, David Graeber, A. S. Hamrah, Heather Havrilesky, Chris Lehmann, Rhonda Lieberman, Anne Elizabeth Moore, Evgeny Morozov, Jim Newell, Rick Perlstein, John Summers, Maureen Tkacik
- ISBN-13: 9780262028332
- ISBN-10: 0262028336
- Publisher: Mit Press
- Publish Date: August 2014
- Page Count: 377
- Reading Level: Ages 18-UP
- Dimensions: 9.02 x 5.3 x 1.13 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.42 pounds
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2014-09-08
- Reviewer: Staff
More a discharge of artillery fire than of cheers or salutes, these self-described "salvos" from The Baffler's last five years, contributed by such writers as Thomas Frank, Barbara Ehrenreich, and Evgeny Morozov, gleefully target modern America's "reigning dogma of the consensus." The smart and sobering essays collected here identify a few common culprits for our "unmitigated national crisis": "the circular preachments of the positive-thinking industry," the glorification of free-market capitalism, an "innovation economy" stifled by bureaucratic government, and political interests "in the business of producing childlike minds." With surgical precision, the writers puncture the propaganda surrounding presidential campaigns, government reform, city planning, and economic revivals. They also take on institutions like Harvard, the Washington Post, and The Atlantic, as well as cultural fads. A.S. Hamrah and Heather Havrilesky, for instance, respectively tackle Thomas Kinkade paintings and 50 Shades of Grey. Whether Rick Perlstein is comparing Mitt Romney to a snake-oil salesman or Susan Faludi is exposing the "hijacking" of contemporary feminism by corporate interests, these authors dare to ask the troubling questions. Eye-opening and irascible, hopeful but not optimistic, this collection offers a clear-eyed perspective on post-recession America and pays readers the ultimate compliment of being able to think for themselves. (Sept.)