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Left in Dark times: A Stand against the New Barbarismby Bernard-Henri Levy
Synopses & Reviews
In this unprecedented critique, Bernard-Henri Lévy, one of the world’s leading intellectuals revisits his political roots, scrutinizes the totalitarianisms of the past as well as those on the horizon, and argues powerfully for a new political and moral vision for our times. Are human rights Western or universal? Does anti-Semitism have a future, and, if so, what will it look like? And how is it that progressives themselves–those who in the past defended individual rights and fought fascism–have now become the breeding ground for new kinds of dangerous attitudes: an unthinking loathing of Israel; an obsessive anti-Americanism; an idea of “tolerance” that, in its justification of Islamic fanaticism, for example, could become the “cemetery of democracies”; and an indifference, masked by relativism, to the greatest human tragedies facing the world today? Illuminating these and other questions, Lévy also brings to life his own autobiography, highlighting the thinkers he has known and scrutinized and the ideological battles he has fought over thirty years–revealing their bearing on the present.
Above all, Lévy offers a powerful new vision for progressives everywhere, one based neither on the failed idealisms of the past neither nor on their current misguided, bigoted, and dangerously sentimental attachments but on an absolute commitment to combat evil in all its guises. The “new barbarism” Levy compellingly diagnoses is real and must be confronted. At a time of ideological and political transition in America, Left in Dark Times is a polemical, incendiary articulation of the threats we all face–in many cases without our even being aware of it–and a riveting, cogent stand against those threats. Surprising and sure to be controversial, wise and free of cynicism, it is one of the most important books yet written by one of the crucial voices of our time.
Praise for Bernard-Henri Lévy’s American Vertigo
“An entertaining trip, as much in the tradition of Jack Kerouac as Tocqueville.”
–The New York Times
“Perceptive, pugnacious, passionate [and] exquisitely written.”
–The New York Observer
“It’s difficult to remember when a writer of any nationality so clearly and thoughtfully delineated both the good and bad in America. [
The philosopher, activist, and author of American Vertigo warns of growing totalitarianism around the globe, covering such topics as the genealogy of anti-Americanism, anti-Semitism, and Islamo-fascism, and calls for the evolution of a new type of politics based on universal values and ethics. 50,000 first printing.
About the Author
Bernard-Henri Lévy is a philosopher, journalist, activist, and filmmaker. He was hailed by Vanity Fair magazine as “Superman and prophet: we have no equivalent in the United States.” Among his dozens of books are American Vertigo, Barbarism with a Human Face, and Who Killed Daniel Pearl? His writing has appeared in a wide range of publications throughout Europe and the United States. His films include the documentaries Bosna! and A Day in the Death of Sarajevo. Lévy is co-founder of the antiracist group SOS Racism and has served on diplomatic missions for the French government.
Table of Contents
Introduction — What's left of the left — And upon this ruin — Primal scenes — My primal scenes — Act, then listen — Note on a fire — Thirty years later — How we're less sanctimonious — A secret calendar of the history of this century — On the new philosophy and its place in its time — Return of the ghosts — Critique of neo-progressive reason — Liberalism is their enemy — Once upon a time, Europe — The other socialism of the imbeciles — Counterattack on the "empire" — The new anti-semitism will be progressive or nothing at all — Fascislamism — The new struggle of the universals.
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