Sunday, May 23, 2010

watching Book TV

Russell is a big fan of Book TV (a program that airs on C-SPAN2 on the weekends). I don't always watch with him as the series focus is almost always non-fiction (and more often than not concerned by politics and/or history). Sometimes, though, I do watch.

This morning one of the topics is what sounds like a really interesting book:
The World Turned Upside Down: The Global Battle Over God, Truth and Power by Melanie Phillips.

Here's the program blurb:
London's Daily Mail columnist explains how she believes the Western world has fallen into a soft totalitarianism by distorting truths, renewing hatred of Jews, and allowing rationality and science to dominate over spirituality and faith. The cult of Barack Obama, she says, is the greatest example of soft totalitarianism in the U.S. The event is at American Enterprise Institute in Washington.

The blurb makes it sound like Phillips is essentially polemical, but listening to her speak, she's not.
Her main concern seems to be with objective truth and with the fact that the collective opinion in the West on the topics she addresses in the book (among them global warming) is not based on provable facts. More significantly her concern is that debate on any of these topics is suppressed, that any difference of opinion ends in name-calling and demonization.

In any case, it sounds like The World Turned Upside Down would be a fascinating, thought-provoking read. We'll try to get our hands on a copy.

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