American culture is on life-support. Beginning in the 1960s a generation of activists twisted and bent long-held American beliefs into an ideology of blame and political correctness-weakening and disrupting the nation. As John Harmon McElroy powerfully demonstrates, the counter-culture has become pervasive, with devastating results. He shows how we neglect to educate our children and call it "teaching self esteem;" how we assail the worth of America and call it respecting "diversity;" and how we refuse to take responsibility for our lives and call it "social justice." In tracing the roots and impact of the counter-culture's rejection of historical American beliefs, McElroy powerfully defends the bedrock principles of responsible individualism, practical improvement, and equal freedom under God.
John Harmon McElroy, professor emeritus of the University of Arizona, has also taught at Clemson and the University of Wisconsin-Madison and been a Fulbright Professor of American Studies at universities in Brazil and Spain. His previous books on American cultural history include: Finding Freedom: America's Distinctive Cultural Formation (1989) and American Beliefs: What Keeps a Big Country and a Diverse People United (1999).
1 Foreword 2 Introduction: The Culture War in America in the Late Twentieth Century 3 The Rejection of American Culture 4 Perfection vs. Practical Improvement 5 Class Struggle vs. Equal Freedom 6 Bending: A Means of Deconstructing a Culture 7 Bending Education 8 Instrumental Government 9 Strict Materialism 10 Will American Culture Be Replaced? 11 Appendix A: Beliefs of American Culture 12 Appendix B: A Brief Homily on Needs 13 Appendix C: Some Recommended Further Reading 14 Sources and Notes 15 Acknowledgments