THE COLLAPSE OF LIBERALISM: Why America Needs a New Left

Charles Noble, Author . Rowman & Littlefield $21.95 (216p) ISBN 978-0-7425-2757-7

Polls have demonstrated that the majority of U.S. citizens would like to see affordable health care, adequately funded public schools and clean air and water. They also believe in civil rights regardless of race, sexual preference or religion. Simultaneously, despite holding these traditionally liberal values, the majority of Americans classify themselves as conservatives. In his engaging and original critique, Noble—chair of the department of political science and director of the International Studies Program at California State University, Long Beach—examines why liberal/progressive leaders have, in recent years, lost their place at the helm of their natural constituencies and what can be done to remedy the problem. In the final analysis, Noble believes that the most eloquent liberal voices in contemporary America have allowed themselves to be consumed by "internecine struggles." In the process, they've become mired in an abstract rhetoric that resonates with very few people: a rhetoric that blurs their message and limits "the conversation to true believers." Noble suggests that all progressives—among them liberals, feminists, environmentalists, civil rights activists, democratic socialists and members of the anti-corporate globalization movement—share responsibility for not working together and not shaping a unified message that the average American can not only understand but endorse. In his final chapter, Noble (Welfare as We Knew It ; Liberalism at Work ) offers constructive suggestions for how liberals can talk about American culture without losing control of the agenda to "evangelical Christians and other moral bullies." (June)

Reviewed on: 04/12/2004
Release date: 04/01/2004
Genre: Nonfiction
Hardcover - 216 pages - 978-0-7425-2756-0
Show other formats
Discover what to read next