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Why Americans Hate Politics Paperback – June 1, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Library Journal
- Thomas H. Ferrell, Univ. of Southwestern Louisiana, Lafayette
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Few modern-day books and in depth analyses manage to weather the test of time. Mr. Dionne's thesis, to his credit, is further affirmed in its accuracy just four days short of 2003. This achievement is only diminished by the frustration of knowing that we've sunken much deeper into this morass of "ideological polarization" vis a vis liberalism and conservatism as it affects today's political climate in the U.S.
Mr. Dionne could hardly have predicted the proliferation of cable networks with their steady diet of disciples from both sides pummeling the viewer 24 hours a day. Neither could he have imagined the depths to which politicos, think tanks, and special interest groups would plunge as this "polarization" continues to feed upon itself some 12 years later.
"Why Americans Hate Politics" should be on every required reading list in our colleges and universities as well as among engaged and concerned citizens in the United States - especially given current events.
Most importantly and refreshingly, Dionne takes both sides seriously and at their word. For example, he is eloquent in pointing out that and that most religious conservatives don't want to delegitimize other's faiths or force others to their own, they just don't like being mocked as dupes.Read more ›
Dionne nicely handles a wide spectrum of issues, such as feminism, the resurgence of religion in politics, supply side economics and the divisions in both modern liberalism and conservatism. At the same time, Dionne provides depth, breadth and context that are uncharacteristic of many textbooks that cover the same period. Dionne does not heed the traditional fissures between political history, intellectual history, economic history and civil rights history. Because of this tack, Dionne effectively conveys just how much was going on at any point in American political life.
Finally, I appreciated Dionne's willingness both to mention and cite other works that provide a more thorough treatment of given subjects. Among the many titles I got from reading Dionne's book were Nicol Rae's "The Decline and Fall of Liberal Republicans," Kevin Phillip's "The Politics of Rich and Poor" and John Richard Neuhaus' "The Naked Public Square." Any book that gives me three suggestions of three more "must read" titles gets extra points.
Looking at the publication date, I was taken aback. The book is so relevant, and it was originally introduced to the market in 1992.
But that's a footnote. Dionne's thesis is simple, yet brilliantly incisive: American political "apathy" is only apparent; the hostility among most people toward 'politics' and, especially, 'politicians' can be explained, he writes, toward the "false choices" provided by our ineffective two-party system.
So, instead of energy and solidarity, we are seeing (and have been seeing for many years, as Dionne indicates) paralysis, stagnation and a 'polarized' climate that denies a third way.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I came to know about this book while reading "Culture War? The Myth of a Polarized America". This book was cited a couple of times and was praised as a good book to read. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Rasheed
“Why Americans Hate Politics,” by E.J.Dionne, has a catchy, but somewhat misleading title. The book is actually a history of how after the Second World War American political... Read morePublished 13 months ago by John Engelman
E.J.'s analysis of politics is great. The edges of the book are a little bit pressured and distorted with wrinkles, but overall still really good quality.Published on September 4, 2013 by Jing
The book not only arrived early, which is a feat in itself considering I live overseas, but when they accidentally sent me two copies, I got to gift one to a friend!Published on February 20, 2013 by Jennifer E. Miller
Many know E.J. Dionne as a liberal shill who writes partisan rhetoric for the Washington Post and gets comments from nasty Drudge-Report-reading lunatics calling him a... Read morePublished on November 22, 2012 by Jesse Radin
This is a well-researched, well-written and insightful review of American presidential politics from 1960-1990. The title doesn't really fit. Read morePublished on October 30, 2011 by Tom K.
This book has an academic feel to it in the following sense: a common problem in social science research is that someone does a case study but then they have to do an analysis that... Read morePublished on September 30, 2011 by P. Troutman
This is not an easy book to read. However, it is an important book to read. We have all heard the much reported axiom: If we don't learn from history we are bound to repeat it. Read morePublished on March 2, 2009 by May Sinclair Mason Clare