- Paperback: 410 pages
- Publisher: South End Press; First Printing edition (July 1, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0896081494
- ISBN-13: 978-0896081499
- Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1.1 x 8.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,013,199 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Friendly Fascism: The New Face of Power in America Paperback – July 1, 1999
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More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
These days, even reading a book like this likely gets you branded a "conspiracy theorist" but Gross points out several times he's not referring to conspiracies -- the Big Government/Big Business combine that is the fueling engine of fascism is alive and well. Indeed, stronger than ever in this country.
This book is a deep, frightening account of elite power structures in America. Friendly fascism is fascism with a friendly face -- not so much jackboots, mass rallies, and so forth that comprise the popular stereotype of fascism, but rather an insidious, public-relations savvy manipulation of power for profit.
What impresses me most is how thorough and cogent Gross's analysis is, and I am sad more people haven't read this book. While it came out in 1980, anybody who is politically aware today will see that, rather than being dated, Gross was definitely ahead of his time in his thinking. This is a big book (@400 pages), and densely packed with information, but it is definitely worth your time.
For anyone familiar with modern social theory, it is apparent that the author's thesis is a quite clever and accurate extension of sociologist C. Wright Mills' well known notions of what came to be known as the `mass society' theory. This was an essential aspect of Mills' famous theory of the power elite as forwarded in a book with the same title. Like social theorist G. William Domhoff ("The Higher Circles"), Professor Gross shows how the deceptively friendly and engaging style of the powers that be actually constitute an increasingly dangerous threat to the democratic process and to the long-term survival of our precious civil liberties.Read more ›
Now with the hindsight of sixteen years, it is readily apparent how talented a prophet Dr. Gross was. His premise was simple: Big Business and Big Government have
realized that with the increasing docility of Americans, along with their demand for mindless consumption, no longer need to resort to the violent oppression of its
citizens that has been the hallmark of past authoritarian states. Today, it is much kinder and gentler (and, arguably, more effective) to assert control through
Big Media, what Chomsky would refer to as Manufacturing Consent. No more messy clubbings of uppity citizens darkening the screens of your evening news and no real
access to the media for those outside of Big Government/Business. Now controlling all we see as real, these forces are capable of molding reality into their own image,
marginalizing those outside their own ranks, and rendering any action, as individuals or collective citizens, impotent. Yet this is all done with a smile, painted just
like Ronald's, and just as faux; with a grandfatherly arm around the shoulder as Reagan took America under his wing; and with Big Business' promises of more and better
services and products to keep our minds dull and occupied, starving for the next opportunity to consume. Yes, Gross saw the future nearly two decades ago, and it has
quietly strolled to our doorstep. Can't you hear the knocking? Or is that just the Domino's delivery driver?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The power that corporations and the wealthy have over us in today's America may be steering dangerously close to fascism, but it's a smarter, more devious kind than has popped up... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Erik Ose
The title says it all... The smiling bimbos on Fox News to the touchy feely of Obama. It's everywhere...
Think for yourself, don't let others do your thinking...
American Fascism will not necessarily come wrapped in a cross, a hammer or a death's head. It will not be promoted by single agency or a single leader. Read morePublished 24 months ago by Alex
Bertram Gross predicted the onset of the world we are living in more than 30 years ago. The book is a heady read, but well worth it to understand modern capitalism and its effects... Read morePublished on December 2, 2013 by Anthony G Myers
See Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism, to see how wrong Gross is, and you will see why Gross and the political tradition he represents have more in common with fascism than the... Read morePublished on November 20, 2013 by elarga
Sad to say, Gross's predictions and warnings have joined those of the distopian novelists; they have been taken as a roadmap, not a warning. Read morePublished on September 24, 2013 by Richard R. Rye
This book is well written. it puts a lot between its pages. Surely we all can agree that this country is not the country we grew up in. Read morePublished on September 8, 2013 by Gene Danforth