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In Defense of Elitism
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From the Pulitzer Prize-winning culture critic for "Time" magazine comes the tremendously controversial, yet highly persuasive, argument that our devotion to the largely unexamined myth of egalitarianism lies at the heart of the ongoing "dumbing of America." Americans have always stubbornly clung to the myth of egalitarianism, of the supremacy of the individual average man. But here, at long last, Pulitzer Prize-winning critic William A. Henry III takes on, and debunks, some basic, fundamentally ingrained ideas: that everyone is pretty much alike (and should be); that self-fulfillment is more imortant thant objective achievement; that everyone has something significant to contribute; that all cultures offer something equally worthwhile; that a truly just society would automatically produce equal success results across lines of race, class, and gender; and that the common man is almost always right. Henry makes clear, in a book full of vivid examples and unflinching opinions, that while these notions are seductively democratic they are also hopelessly wrong. "A passionate yet reasoned argument for the proposition that some people simply contribute more to society than others. It challenges head-on the presumptions and platitudes of government, academia, and even private industry." -- "The Atlanta Journal Constitution." "A wide-ranging, free-swinging commentary that will raise the hackles of nearly everyone." -- "New York Times." "Bracing... eloquent testimony that what killed liberalism in this country is a deeply misguided egalitarianism." -- "The New York Times Book Review."
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About the Author

William A. Henry III was a culture critic for Time magazine whose writing earned two Pulizer Prizes: one in 1980 for criticism and one he shared in 1975 for coverage of school desegregation in Boston. His books include Visions of America, Jack Benny: The Radio and Television Years, The Great One: The Life and Legend of Jackie Gleason, and In Defense of Elitism. Mr. Henry passed away in June 1994.

Reviews

"A passionate yet reasoned argument for the proposition that some people simply contribute more to society than others. It challenges head-on the presumptions and platitudes of government, academia, and even private industry." -- The Atlanta Journal Constitution. "A wide-ranging, free-swinging commentary that will raise the hackles of nearly everyone." -- New York Times. "Bracing... eloquent testimony that what killed liberalism in this country is a deeply misguided egalitarianism." -- The New York Times Book Review.

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