An expert on American authoritarianism offers a searing rebuke to the exceptional narrative that dominates our understanding of US history. In 12 lessons, On Fascism exposes the divisive rhetoric, strongman tactics, violent othering, and mainstream attitudes that continue to course through American history?from the birth of the nation to Donald Trump. Only confrontation and reconciliation will empower us to truly achieve the democratic and egalitarian aspirations that American greatness rests upon. The United States of Lyncherdom, as Mark Twain once said. Lincoln versus Douglas. The Chinese Exclusion Act. The Trail of Tears. The internment of Japanese-American. The Palmer Raids. McCarthyism. The Surveillance State. At every turning point in history, as we aspired towards great things, we also witnessed the authoritarian impulse drive policy and win public support. But this book isn't simply an indictment. It is also a celebration of our spirit, perseverance, and commitment to the values at the heart of the American project. Along the way, we learn about many American heroes - like Ida B. Wells, who dedicated her life to documenting the horrors of lynching throughout the nation, or the young Jewish-American who took a beating for protesting a Nazi rally in New York City in 1939. Men and women who embodied the soaring, revolutionary proclamations beset by the Declaration of Independence and Preamble to the Constitution. On Fascism is both an honest reckoning and a love letter to America - for our history is also diverse and special, and it's time we elevate the aspects of this country that make us exceptional.
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Date of Publication: 26/10/2020