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Henry A. Giroux currently holds the McMaster University Chair for Scholarship in the Public Interest in the English and Cultural Studies Department and dis the Paulo Freire Distinguished Scholar in Critical Pedagogy. His most recent books are America's Addiction to Terrorism (Monthly Review Press, 2016), and America at War with Itself (City Lights, 2017). He is also a contributing editor to a number of journals, includingTikkun, the Journal of Wild Culture, and Ragazine. Giroux is also a member of Truthout's Board of Directors. His web site iswww.henryagiroux.com.
America At War With Itself: The Sandstorm
This is an excerpt from Henry Giroux's book, America At War With Itself, from the introduction.
In its earlier forms, the language of authoritarianism relied upon the discourse of command and courted mass hysteria, one that produced totalizing world views, punished dissent, disseminated hate-filled propaganda steeped in the vocabulary of ultra-nationalism and racial purity, and emptied language of any substance
Friday, August 21, 2015(16 comments)
The Plague of American Authoritarianism
In the United States an emerging totalitarianism has appeared in a form different from what we have seen in the past. Instead of a charismatic leader, the government is now governed through the anonymous and largely remote hands of corporate power and finance capital. The more money influences politics, the more corrupt the political culture becomes.
Tuesday, October 31, 2017(42 comments)
Donald Trump as the Bully-in Chief: Weaponizing the politics of Humiliation
Under President Trump, the plague of mid-20th century authoritarianism has returned not only in the menacing spectacle of populist rallies, fear-mongering, unchecked bigotry, and humiliation, but also in an emboldened culture of war, militarization, and extreme violence that looms over society like a rising storm.
Friday, September 30, 2016(6 comments)
Thinking Dangerously in the Age of Normalized Ignorance
What happens to a society when thinking is eviscerated and is disdained in favor of raw emotion?  What happens when political discourse functions as a bunker rather than a bridge? What happens when the spheres of morality and spirituality give way to the naked instrumentalism of a savage market rationality?
Assassination Talk, the Banality of Evil, and the Paranoid State of American Politics
Trump's rhetoric, along with the discourse of other extremists, echoes Hannah Arendt's insight that totalitarianism is produced, in part, by making human beings superfluous, ignoring their voices, and silencing them in fascistic discourses of certainty, absolutes, and unaccountability that allow no space for critical thinking, informed judgment, and critical agency.
Terrorizing School Children in the American Police State
Violence functions as a brutalizing practice used by the state to squelch dissent, incarcerate poor minorities of class and color, terrorize immigrants, wage a war on minority youth, and menace individuals and groups considered disposable or a threat. It also accelerates abusive forms of punitiveness and control that extend from the prisons to other institutions such as schools.
Sunday, July 26, 2015(6 comments)
America's New Brutalism: the Death of Sandra Bland
Bland's death over a routine traffic stop is beyond monstrous. It is indicative of a country in which lawlessness is now integral to the police state, and extreme violence is the new norm for a society fed by the legacy of slavery, Jim Crow, the incarceration state, the drug wars, and the increasing militarization of everything, including the war on black youth.
Friday, November 11, 2016(8 comments)
A Call for Resistance in Dark Times
The lights are going out and the time to wake up from this nightmare is today. Forget depression, look ahead, get energized, read, build alternative public spheres, become guerrilla fighters. There are no guarantees in politics, but there is no politics that matters without hope, that is, educated hope.
Saturday, July 8, 2017(7 comments)
Can a New American Revolution Break Our Nation's Culture of Cruelty?
The right's politics are as vicious as ever, but they also present a unique opportunity. The health care reform bills proposed by Republicans in the House and Senate have generated heated discussions across a vast ideological and political spectrum. On the right, senators such as Rand Paul and Ted Cruz have endorsed a new level of cruelty -- one that has a long history among the radical right
Wednesday, April 22, 2015(2 comments)
The War on Terrorism Targets Democracy Itself
George Orwell's nightmarish vision of a totalitarian society casts a dark shadow over the United States. The consequences can be seen clearly in the ongoing and ruthless assault on the social state, workers, unions, higher education, students, poor people of color and any vestige of the social contract. Free market policies, values & practices now shape practically every commanding political and economic institution in the US
Domestic Terrorism, Youth and the Politics of Disposability
a dark cloud of political and ethical ignorance has descended on the United States. (1) Thoughtlessness has become something that now occupies a privileged, if not celebrated, place in the political landscape and the mainstream cultural apparatuses. A new kind of infantilism now shapes daily life as adults gleefully take on the role of unthinking children and children are taught to be adults, stripped of their innocence...
Tuesday, August 22, 2017(3 comments)
Why the Democratic Party Can't Save Us From Trump's Authoritarianism
For too many members of the Democratic Party, Trump is the eccentric clown who unexpectedly stepped into history by finding the right note in rousing an army of "deplorables" willing to invest in his toxic script of hatred, demonization and exclusion. When democracy is threatened and life on the planet itself so imperiled, collective action is the only way out of illiberal democracy. It is time to go for broke.
Saturday, August 12, 2017(2 comments)
Trump and the Politics of Nihilism
Ignorance is a terrible wound when it is self-inflicted, but it becomes a dangerous plague when the active refusal to know combines with power. President Trump's lies, lack of credibility, woefully deficient knowledge of the world, and unbridled narcissism have suggested for some time that he lacks the intelligence, judgment and capacity for critical thought necessary to occupy the presidency of the United States.
Saturday, December 10, 2016
Trump's Second Gilded Age: Overcoming the Rule of Billionaires and Militarists
It is hard to believe that this gaggle of religious fundamentalists, conspiracy theory advocates, billionaires, and retrograde anti-communists, who uniformly lack the experience to take on the jobs for which they were nominated, could possibly be viewed as reasonable candidates for top government positions. Most of Trump's appointees to top cabinet positions are a mix of incompetent and mean spirited billionaires and generals.
Wednesday, November 8, 2017(7 comments)
Democracy on Life Support: Donald Trump's First Year in Office
Under Trump, the plague of mid-20th century authoritarianism and apocalyptic populism have returned in a unique American form. A year later, people in Asia and the rest of the world are watching, pondering how such a dreadful event and retreat from democracy could have taken place. How could a liberal society give up its ideals so quickly?
Thursday, February 15, 2018(2 comments)
The Ghost of Fascism in the Age of Trump
What we are witnessing is a closing of the political and a full-scale attack on moral outrage, thoughtful reasoning, collective resistance and radical imagination. Trump has normalized the unthinkable, legitimated the inexcusable and defended the indefensible.
Friday, October 6, 2017(1 comments)
Donald Trump's passion for cruelty
What's different about Trump is that he revels in the use of violence and war-mongering brutality to inflict humiliation and pain on people. He pulls the curtains away from a systemic culture of cruelty and a racially inflected mass- incarceration state. He publicly celebrates his own sadistic investment in violence as a source of pleasure.
Tuesday, February 14, 2017(2 comments)
Rethinking Orwell's 1984 and Huxley's Brave New World in Trump's America
Huxley shared Orwell's concern about repression as a political tool of the elite, enforced through surveillance and the banning of books, dissent, and critical thought itself. But Huxley believed that social control and the propagation of ignorance would be introduced by those in power through the political tools of pleasure, mass entertainment, and a politics of distraction.
Sunday, October 15, 2017(1 comments)
Rethinking Higher Education in a Time of Tyranny
One of Martin Luther King's great insights was his recognition that education provided a bulwark against both ignorance and indifference in the face of injustice. Like Gandhi, he warned people over and over again not to remain silent in the face of racism, militarism and extreme materialism, and argued that "he who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it."
Friday, November 3, 2017(2 comments)
Disposability in the Age of Disasters: From Dreamers and Puerto Rico to Violence in Las Vegas
Under Trump, a politics of disposability has merged with an ascendant authoritarianism in the United States in which the government's response to such disparate issues as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) crisis, the devastation of Puerto Rico by Hurricane Maria and the mass shooting in Las Vegas are met uniformly with state-sanctioned and state-promoted violence.
Thursday, August 17, 2017(1 comments)
Trump's Neo-Nazis and the Rise of Illiberal Democracy
It appears that the presence of Nazi and Confederate flags, along with the horrible history of millions lost to the Holocaust and slavery, lynchings, church bombings, and the assassination of Black leaders, such as Medgar Evans and Martin Luther King Jr., did little to move Trump to a serious understanding or repudiation of the poisonous historical forces that surfaced in Charlottesville.
Illuminating the Darkness in the Age of Despair
The text of a commencement speech given by Henry Giroux at the University of the West of Scotland's graduation ceremony Tuesday. The university is presenting Giroux with an honorary doctorate.
Anti-Politics and the Plague of Disorientation: Welcome to the Age of Trump
To struggle against a culture of lies, we need a new political vocabulary that acts as fuel for a radical democracy.
What does resistance mean when it is reduced to a call to participate in rigged elections that reproduce a descent into an updated form of oligarch...
Instead of tying the fortunes of democracy to rigged elections we need nonviolent, massive forms of civil disobedience.
Monday, November 30, 2015(5 comments)
Trump's Embrace of Totalitarianism is America's Dirty Little Secret
Trump is not just a fool, an idiot, or ethically dead, he is symptomatic of a long line of fascists who shut down public debate, attempt to humiliate their opponents, endorse violence as a response to dissent, and criticize any public display of democratic principles. America has reached its endpoint with Trump, and his presence should be viewed as a stern warning of the nightmare to come.
Monday, December 19, 2016(4 comments)
White Nationalism in the Oval Office and the Suppression of Dissent
There is more at work here than the registers of incoherency, ignorance and civic illiteracy. There is also an inconsistency that errs on the side of a militant racism and a racist militarism. For instance, the only moments of clarity in Trump's discourse are when he uses the toxic vocabulary of hate, xenophobia, racism and misogyny to target those he believes refuse to "Make America Great Again."
Tuesday, January 9, 2018(3 comments)
Challenging Trump's Language of Fascism
Trump is not only a serial liar, but he also displays a deep contempt for critical thinking and has boasted about how he loves the uneducated. Not only have mainstream sources such as The Washington Post and The New York Times published endless examples of Trump's lies, they have noted that even in the aftermath of such exposure, he continues to be completely indifferent to being exposed as a serial liar.
Revisiting Orwell's "1984" in Trump's America
Trump suggested that he intended to demolish environmental protections, resume state-sponsored torture and deny funding to those cities willing to provide sanctuary to illegal immigrants. And this was just the beginning. The financial elite now find their savior in Trump as they will receive more tax cuts, and happily embrace minimal government regulations, while their addiction to greed spins out of control.
Sunday, September 10, 2017(1 comments)
Charlottesville, Neo-Nazis and the Challenge to Higher Education
Trump signals to his right-wing extremist base and fellow politicians that he justifies state enacted violence against immigrants, especially Latinos. In addition, Trump's language of fear and violence emboldens right-wing extremists and gives them the green light to support legislation and ideologies that are profoundly reactionary.
Militant Hope in the Age of Trump
Analysis of the Politics of Hope in the Age of Donald Trump
The United States stands at the endpoint of a long series of attacks on democracy, and the choices faced by the American public today point to the divide between those who are committed to democracy and those who are not
Trump's War on Dangerous Memory and Critical Thought
Donald Trump, the president, is not only a twisted caricature of every variation of economic, political, educational, and social fundamentalism, he is the apogee of an increasingly intolerant and authoritarian culture committed to destroying free speech, civil rights, women's reproductive freedoms, and all vestiges of economic justice and democracy.
Militant Hope in the Age of the Politics of the Disconnect
The future looks bleak, especially, for youth in neoliberal societies as they are burdened with debt, dead-end jobs, unemployment, and, if you are black and poor, the increasing possibility of being either incarcerated or shot by the police.
Tuesday, October 11, 2016
Trump's Return to the Good Old Days and the Specter of Mass Terror
America is at war with itself and Trump is simply one despicable register of that war on democracy. Trump is shrill and unapologetic about his neo-fascist beliefs and policies whereas Hillary Clinton and the rest of the neoliberal centrists wrap their war mongering policies and support for the financial elite in the empty discourse of liberalism with a disingenuous nod towards social justice and democratic values.
Tuesday, February 7, 2017(1 comments)
Combating Trump's Neo-Fascism and the Ghost of "1984"
Unfortunately, the discourse of remolding, manipulation, distortion has gained enormous traction at the present time in American society. This is a discourse that reinforces a future in which totalitarianism thrives and democracies die. It is the discourse of a dystopian society marked by a deep-seated anti-intellectualism intensified by the incessant undermining and collapse of civic literacy and civic culture.
Friday, October 21, 2016(2 comments)
The United States' War on Youth: From Schools to Debtors' Prisons
As the United States increasingly models its schools after prisons and subjects children to a criminal legal system marked by severe class and racial inequities, it becomes clear that such children are no longer viewed as a social investment but as suspects. It has become clear that the United States has both failed its children and democracy itself.
Monday, April 17, 2017(2 comments)
Toward a Politics of Ungovernability: Shutting Down American-Style Authoritarianism
It is impossible to imagine the damage Trump and his white nationalists, economic fundamentalists, and white supremacists friends will do to civil liberties, the social contract, the planet, and life itself in the next few years. Rather than address climate change, the threat of nuclear war, galloping inequality, the elimination of public goods, Trump and his vicious acolytes have accelerated the threats