When Christopher Lasch died on Valentine’s day in , America lost the most profound of her critics. His final book, The Revolt of the Elites, was published a. Christopher Lasch was one of those rare figures in American public life who was The Revolt of the Elites and the Betrayal of Democracy, a collection of essays. Christopher Lasch, who died last year, has been rather undernoticed in Britain. His attention was admittedly focused on American politics and.

Author: Gajas Shakaran
Country: Angola
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Sex
Published (Last): 18 October 2010
Pages: 461
PDF File Size: 1.29 Mb
ePub File Size: 4.8 Mb
ISBN: 332-8-13243-781-2
Downloads: 9880
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Tucage

Jan 11, Stephen rated it liked it.


In his last major works he explored this theme in depth, suggesting that Americans had much to learn from the suppressed and misunderstood populist and artisan movements of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

I am going to find the article Douthat wrote and read some more of his suggestions. Their acknowledgment of civic obligations does not extend beyond their own immediate neighborhoods.

The great men of culture are those who have had a passion for diffusing, for making prevail, for carrying from one end of society to the other, the best knowledge, the best ideas of their time. Simultaneously arrogant and insecure, the new elites regard the masses with mingled scorn and apprehension.

Religious and ethnic warfare breaks out in one country after another: Also found in close proximity are restaurants with precisely the right ambience favored by producers wooing directors and directors wooing screenwriters, and everyone in Hollywood wooing everyone else.

The Revolt of the Elites by Christopher Lasch :: A Book Review by Scott London

And with out of touch elites not responding to the needs of the majority institutions lascy democracy decline. The decline of democratic discourse has come about largely at the hands of the elites, or “talking classes,” as Lasch refers to them. Whatever, I think he’be depressed at our current culture of totalitarian ass kissing and liberal state worshipping.

Lasch refers to them, made up of professionals, lawyers, journalists, etc. It is undeniable, of course, that the comforts of modern life are still distributed far more widely than they were before the Industrial Revolution.


For Lasch, to accept our inability to pasch a God-given world is the first step to a more realistic vision for humanity.

A sure sign that Lasch’s latest and, sadly, last rveolt deserves wide acclaim is that it will infuriate those who cling to conventional notions of left and right.

Members of the elite have lost faith in the values, or what remains of them, of the West. One might add the more jaundiced observation that the circles of power—finance, government, art, entertainment—overlap and become increasingly interchangeable.

So, the political debate is limited mainly to the dominant classes and political ideologies laech all contact with the concerns of the ordinary citizen. Feb 15, Peter Mcloughlin rated it really liked it Shelves: The distinguished historian argues that democracy today is threatened not by the masses, as Jose Ortega y Gasset The Revolt PittsfordNew YorkUS.

Lasch remains as relentless a critic of liberal progressivism as he is of unfettered capitalism. He did what he could with the time he had. In pursuit of this illusion they have become infatuated with the global economy. They lived in the service of demanding ideals.

Related to this was valuing mental labour over manual labour: Hollywood stars take a prominent part in the Clinton campaign and flock to Clinton’s inaugural, investing it with the glamour of a Hollywood opening. In this challenging work, Christopher Lasch makes his most accessible critique yet of what is wrong with the values and beliefs of America’s professional and managerial elites.

To an alarming extent, the privileged classes—by an expansive definition, the top 20 percent—have made themselves independent not only of crumbling industrial cities but of public services in general. He sought to rehabilitate this populist or producerist alternative tradition: But in late twentieth-century America it is not the masses so much as an emerging elite of professional and managerial types who constitute the tge threat to democracy, according to Lasch.

No trivia or quizzes yet. It is written for a popular audience thus has far fewer footnotes and lacks the academic tone of past works. An educational establishment was just as dangerous as a priestly or military establishment. This has come about in surprising ways. This last has been replaced by the shopping mall in particular, a place that does not lend itself to a relaxed conversation with whoever is around.


But all of the essays eventually bring us to his final chapter which is a very compelling denouncement of how power elites not the religious right have created a secular society that is not only wrong-headedly divisive, thw IS so because it is so wrong-headedly threatening toward a religious culture that is so desperately needed in our lost society; and we’ve all thrown it off in the names of science, progress, and higher education Nationality, when global capitalism holds sway, no longer seems interesting.

Hope in a Scattering Time: Return to Book Page.

The teaching function would be concentrated christpher a class gevolt professional specialists, whereas it ought to be diffused throughout the whole community. By the time Lasch got around to writing The True and Only Heavenhis suite of concerns had taken on a metaphysical, even a theological cast. Even though he was n This was an interesting read, given that my politics don’t exactly line up with Lasch’s. Lasch’s earliest argument, anticipated partly by Hofstadter’s concern with the cycles of fragmentation among radical movements in the United States, was that American radicalism had at some point in the past become socially untenable.

This is a pity, as I think the start was particularly interesting. First of all, Lasch seems entirely oblivious of the fact that the great democracies grew up in periods of vigorous economic expansion.

The Undeclared War Against Womenp. Lasch died inbut Mr Douthat must feel that the book presages what Douthat thinks motivates Trump supporters thirty years later: