Book Review: Empire Of Illusion - The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle

posted on 01/05/10 06:48 pm by Fr. Paul Hansen, C.Ss.R.  

written by Chris Hedges, published by Alfred A. Knopf Canada 2009

A culture that cannot distinguish between reality and illusion dies. And we are dying now it seems. We will either awake from our induced childishness, one where trivia and gossip pass for News and information, one where our goal is not justice but an illusive and unattainable happiness, to confront the stark limitations before us, or we will continue our headlong retreat into fantasy. Those who cling to fantasy in times of despair and turmoil inevitably turn to demagogues and charlatans to entertain and reassure them. And these demagogues, as they have throughout history , lead the crowd, blinded and amused toward despotism. The worse reality becomes, the less a beleaguered population wants to hear about it and the more it distracts itself with squalid pseudo-events of celebrity breakdowns, gossip and trivia. These are the debauched revels of a dying culture.

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