By Peter Swirski
The usa at the present time is stricken with political alienation, militarized violence, institutionalized poverty, and social suffering. Worst of all, maybe, it really is troubled with persistent and acute ahistoricism. the US insist on ignoring the context of its current dilemmas. It insists on forgetting what preceded the headlines of this present day and on denying continuity with historical past. It insists, in brief, on its exceptionalism.
American Utopia and Social Engineering units out to right this amnesia. It misses no chance to flesh out either the ancient premises and the political can provide at the back of the social rules and political occasions of the interval. those interdisciplinary matters supply, in flip, the framework for the analyses of works of yankee literature that reflect their instances and mores.
Novels thought of comprise: B.F. Skinner and Walden Two (1948), simply the main scandalous utopia of the century, if no longer of all instances; Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1962), an anatomy of political disfranchisement American-style; Bernard Malamud’s God’s Grace (1982), a neo-Darwinian beast delusion approximately morality within the thermonuclear age; Walker Percy’s The Thanatos Syndrome (1986), a diagnostic novel approximately engineering violence out of America’s streets and minds; and Philip Roth’s The Plot opposed to America (2004), an alternate background of homegrown ‘soft’ fascism.
With the aid of the 5 novels and the social types defined therein, Swirski interrogates key points of sociobiology and behavioural psychology, balloting and referenda tactics, morality and altruism, multilevel choice and proverbial knowledge, violence and chip-implant know-how, and the adaptive position of feelings in our deepest and public lives.
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American Utopia and Social Engineering in Literature, Social Thought, and Political History (Routledge Transnational Perspectives on American Literature) by Peter Swirski