“Too many people today accept the notion that their fate is solely a matter of individual responsibility, irrespective of wider structural forces,” writes cultural critic and theorist Henry A. Giroux, in his new book, America at War with Itself. “This much promoted ideology, favored by the rich, suggests that human relations boil down to competition and combat. People today are expected to inhabit a set of economic relations in which the only obligation is to fight for one’s own self-interest.” This troubling trend is not only profoundly anti-democratic, but also works to eliminate structural, systemic and social concerns from public discourse, creating what Giroux has described as “organized powerlessness.”
In the following interview, Giroux – a professor for scholarship in the public interest at McMaster University and a member of Truthout’s board – explains the background to the war metaphor and deconstructs its everyday use in the US. Finally, he evokes a politics of possibility which begins by making visible the linkages among a vast array of issues that undermine democracy.
Source: Henry Giroux on a United States at war with itself: “We no longer live in a democracy”