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One Nation, Two Cultures: A Searching Examination of American Society in the Aftermath of Our Cultural Revolution Paperback – January 30, 2001
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One side originated in the tradition of republican virtue, the other in the counterculture of the late 1960s. Himmelfarb argues that, while the latter generated the dominant culture of today-particularly in universities, journalism, television, and film--a "dissident culture" continues to promote the values of family, a civil society, sexual morality, privacy, and patriotism. Proposing democratic remedies for our moral and cultural diseases, Himmelfarb concludes that it is a tribute to Americans that we remain "one nation" even as we are divided into "two cultures."
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Top Customer Reviews
Himmelfarb's analysis of the democratic institutions which might remedy the moral disorder she describes is cogent. She develops a typology of civil society proponents and prefers hard advocates to soft; she echoes Schumpeter's analysis of the decline of the family, and she analyzes religion's positive effects on citizen's morality thoroughly.
Himmelfarb is a historian. Her book consequently has a depth which is lacking in the policy writings of conservative scholars. Civil society, liberals and conservatives agree, needs strenghtening. But did you now that, as she points out, civil society was not in our political vocabulary until the 1980's?
Himmelfarb's meditation on the two cultures which have developed because of the cultural revolutions is similarly thoughtful. For instance, she notes that the gap between elites who are non-judgemental, permissive, and post-modern and a dissident, moral, culture which cuts across class and racial lines is not static.Read more ›
There is no love of Christendom here, no grasp of the pulse of western civilization or the underlying culture of America, only an ongoing attempt to impose on the reader an either/or alternative that will appeal to the unimaginative. Read some Thomas Sowell instead. Gertrude and her apartment-dwelling NY friends really are the Reanointed.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved the book. It is essentialy the playbook of the Conservatives. She basically says that the redistribution of wealth starting in the Roosevelt era and with the Unions, has... Read morePublished on August 16, 2012 by Kindle Customer
I read Himmelfarb's book hoping to gain some insight as to the "moral decay" that so many talk about... Read morePublished on January 25, 2006 by M. Exinger
Some interesting points made, the author is too quick to draw a strong line connecting the "moral decay" of our society in part to non-traditional families. Read morePublished on December 5, 2004 by Robert M. Thompson