Synopses & Reviews
Trained relentlessly to work and consume, we make daily lifestyle decisions that promote corporate profits more than our own well-being. We also find ourselves working more, living in fragmented communities, and neglecting our most basic spiritual and political values. As Curtis White puts it, In order to live, you will be asked to do what is no good, what is absurd, trivial, demeaning, and soul killing. Although we belong to the world 's most affluent society, somehow we never have the chance to ask: How shall we live?With his trademark humor and acerbic wit, White raises this impertinent question. He also debunks the conventional view that liberalism can answer it without drawing on spiritual values. Surveying American popular culture (including Office Space and The Da Vinci Code) to illustrate his points, White urges us to renew our commitment to human fundamentals as articulated by Henry David Thoreau-especially free time, home, and food-and to reclaim Thoreau 's spirit of disobedience.Seeking imaginative answers to his central questions, White also interviews John De Graaf (Affluenza), James Howard Kunstler (The Long Emergency) and Michael Ableman (Fields of Plenty) about their views of the good life in our time.
With his trademark intelligence and humor, Curtis White argues that the American left needs a new and compelling spiritual basis for its politics, and that its seeds can be discovered in Thoreau's spiritual politics of refusal and a return to human "fundamentals" especially work, home, and food. Along the way, White offers a shrewd reading of the cult classic Office Space, a scathing critique of Bill Maher's political comedy, and other acerbic cultural commentary. The book includes provocative interviews with James Howard Kunstler, John de Graaf, and Michael Ableman.
The intersection of religion and politics is among the most hotly debated
About the Author
Curtis White is the author of the novels "Memories of My Father Watching TV" and "Requiem." A widely acclaimed essayist, his work appears regularly in "Context" and "Harper's." He is an English professor at Illinois State University and a board director at the award-winning Dalkey Archive Press.