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Publisher's Summary

Noam Chomsky is widely regarded as the most influential thinker of our time, but never before has he devoted a major book to one topic: income inequality.
"During the Great Depression, things were much worse than they are today, but there was an expectation that things were going to get better. There was a real sense of hopefulness. There isn't today.... Inequality is really unprecedented. In terms of total inequality, it's like the worst periods in American history. But if you refine it more closely, the inequality comes from the extreme wealth in a tiny sector of the population, a fraction of 1 percent.... Not only is it extremely unjust in itself, inequality has highly negative consequences on the society as a whole because the very fact of inequality has a corrosive, harmful effect on democracy."
(Noam Chomsky, in Requiem for the American Dream)
Requiem for the American Dream is not an essay collection but an entire work of some 70,000 words, based on four years of interviews with Chomsky by the editors. Chomsky considers these to be his final, long-form documentary interviews. It is a book that makes Chomsky's breadth and depth accessible and at the same time gives us his most powerful political ideas with unprecedented, breathtaking directness. It will go down as one of his greatest and most lasting contributions.
Requiem for the American Dream is being produced in tandem with the film of the same name that was recently released in selected theaters to rave reviews and standing ovations. It will be on Netflix and touring colleges prior to the book's release.
©2017 Valeria Chomsky (P)2017 Recorded Books
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By BruceK on 04-14-17

Documents how US plutocracy oppresses citizens

I have read/listened to this book, in my case Audible and Kindle versions
twice, and plan to read it again. This book, an expanded, edited version
of the documentary by the same name is an important and well put together
compendium of Noam Chomsky's ideas on America's political order. It is
an important book to read if you are concerned about contemporary trends
with American politics and the 99%.

Many of Chomsky's ideas are in opposition to conventional thinking that they
seem strange at first, and take a while to sink in. This book is Chomsky distilled,
a concise clear summary of ideas most of us are too busy to think about or too
distracted to perceive, the "red pill" that clues the reader in to see the "Matrix".
Agree or disagree, you will never see this country the same way.

Noam Chomsky has spent his lifetime studying history and current events and
has passed on his insights in over 100 books and countless lectures, but this
book is an edited collection of the main criticisms of American politics. Our
system calls itself democratic, but works by keeping working citizens out of
the loop; without the information, tools and connections to understand our
common interests as citizens to fulfill the promise of our Constitution. Chomsky
shows that 85% of government policies go against what the people want when
they are polled.

An important point in this book is how in our society/economy we are
trained in what Chomsky calls the "vile maxim", morally evil rules of conduct
as being normal. The vile maxim is described as "All for ourselves and
nothing for anyone else" or care only for yourself and forsake all others.
How this is programmed and promulgated in our country makes the difference
between the US and the rest of the developed world - widening gulf.

We've ended up with a morally bankrupt society that harms many of its people
while telling them they live in the greatest country in the world and pay to have
our military secure resources and power for the tiny elite who do not serve the
interests of the American people. In other developed countries they have
sustainable social systems that support and help their people, and their citizens
are better off than Americans on many dimensions while our media tells us the

The book is put together in elegant order, well written; a handbook for understanding
the American tragedy. The "plutocrats" have worked efficiently to direct wealth and
power to the top and to disempower citizens and trick them with propaganda.

The Audible version is done well. The reader's voice is a bit harsh and cold
reminiscent of a college lecturer, but it is clear and the sentences are clear
and intelligible.

Requiem For The American Dream by Noam Chomsky 5/5

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15 of 15 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Mariah Vance on 05-07-17

I wish I could get my friends and family to read this book!

As always his books are very educational. I'm am also glad his view where straight forward and backed by facts. I enjoyed all of the book but the last chapter was my favorite. I don't think he meant to move anyone to tears but I was.

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Jeremy Hall on 10-25-17

Brilliant ! An excellent read !

Great information, well explained, nicely written. A book that explains a journey through the concepts of the American Dream.

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5 out of 5 stars
By Luke Hicks on 04-26-17

Great introduction to Chomsky

This is an excellent way to begin to understand Chomsky. Clear, concise and fundamental in its explanation of power.

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