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The splintering of the American mind : identity politics, inequality, and community on today's college campuses

Author: William Egginton
Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018. ©2018
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"A timely, provocative, necessary look at how identity politics has come to dominate college campuses and higher education in America at the expense of a more essential commitment to equality. Thirty years after the culture wars, identity politics is now the norm on college campuses--and it hasn't been an unalloyed good for our education system or the country. Though the civil rights movement, feminism, and gay  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: Nonfiction
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: William Egginton
ISBN: 9781635571332 1635571332
OCLC Number: 1029776037
Description: 263 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: I: IDENTITY. Undoing history ; A first volley in the culture wars ; Making the personal political ; The best that has been thought and said ; The rise of theory ; The liberal imagination ; A contagion of disapproval ; An authoritarian underbelly ; Boutique multiculturalism ; A presupposition of incommunicability ; Hyperspecialization ; The trap of relevance ; The time to think ; A neoliberal ethic ; Sounding the alarm --
II: INEQUALITY. The great equalizer ; What happened to the American dream? ; Toddler trenches ; School haze ; Educational ecologies ; The college bottleneck ; Diversity in higher ed ; From inequality to divisiveness ; The revenge of the middle class --
III: COMMUNITY. Learning to think ; The walrus and the carpenter ; Education and fellow-feeling ; Democracy and the liberal arts ; Media literacy ; Jefferson's words ; What are people for? ; Growing community ; The idea of America.
Responsibility: William Egginton.

Abstract:

"A timely, provocative, necessary look at how identity politics has come to dominate college campuses and higher education in America at the expense of a more essential commitment to equality. Thirty years after the culture wars, identity politics is now the norm on college campuses--and it hasn't been an unalloyed good for our education system or the country. Though the civil rights movement, feminism, and gay pride led to profoundly positive social changes, William Egginton argues that our culture's increasingly narrow focus on the individual puts us in a dangerous place. The goal of our education system, and particularly the liberal arts, was originally to strengthen community; but the exclusive focus on individualism has led to a new kind of intolerance that degrades our civic discourse and fatally distracts progressive politics from its commitment to equality and inclusivity. Egginton argues that our colleges and universities have become exclusive, expensive clubs for the cultural and economic elite instead of a national, publicly funded project for the betterment of the country. Only a return to the goals of community, and the egalitarian values underlying a liberal arts education, can head off the further fracturing of the body politic and the splintering of the American mind. With lively, on-the-ground reporting and trenchant analysis, The Splintering of the American Mind is a powerful book that is guaranteed to be controversial within academia and beyond. At this critical juncture, the book challenges higher education and every American to reengage with our history and its contexts, and to imagine our nation in new and more inclusive ways."--Dust jacket.
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