Wednesday October 22nd, 2014, 8:17 am (EDT)

Blowing the Roof Off the Twenty-First Century

Media, Politics, and the Struggle for Post-Capitalist Democracy

Blowing the Roof Off the Twenty-First Century
272 pages
Cloth ISBN: 978-1-58367-478-9
Forthcoming in November 2014
e-book available!
Price: $28

In the United States and much of the world there is a palpable depression about the prospect of overcoming the downward spiral created by the tyranny of wealth and privilege and establishing a truly democratic and sustainable society. It threatens to become self-fulfilling. In this trailblazing new book, award-winning author Robert W. McChesney argues that the weight of the present is blinding people to the changing nature and the tremendous possibilities of the historical moment we inhabit.

In Blowing the Roof Off the Twenty-First Century, he uses a sophisticated political economic analysis to delineate the recent trajectory of capitalism and its ongoing degeneration. In exciting new research McChesney reveals how notions of democratic media are becoming central to activists around the world seeking to establish post-capitalist democracies. Blowing the Roof Off the Twenty-First Century also takes a fresh look at recent progressive political campaigns in the United States. While conveying complex ideas in a lively and accessible manner, McChesney demonstrates that a very different and far superior world is not only necessary, but possible.

Regardless of their voting history and political views, anyone who gives McChesney’s lucid, accessible State of the Nation his or her time will find it worthy of thought and discussion.

Publishers Weekly

Here is Robert McChesney at his most urgent! Read this book and find out how capitalism is eating our democracy and devouring the Web—and what you can do about it.

—Matthew Rothschild, senior editor, The Progressive

Robert McChesney always situates his writing in the context of the most heated battles of those fighting for justice. His essays and books reflect both timeliness and longevity, but they most especially reflect the need for urgency in response to the conditions faced by the oppressed. I am always ready to dig into his work because I know that I will be left thinking.

—Bill Fletcher, Jr., writer and activist; author, “They’re Bankrupting Us” And Twenty Other Myths about Unions

McChesney’s work has been of extraordinary importance. It should be read with care and concern by people who care about freedom and basic rights.

—Noam Chomsky

A brilliant analysis of the interrelated material and symbolic forces that are pushing the United States into a new form of authoritarianism and threatening the very existence of humanity. Steeped in a language of critique and possibility, McChesney weaves together a variety of issues to make clear that the struggle for a radical democracy must bring together not only an understanding of the engines of political economy, but also the educational power of those cultural apparatuses that shape our desires, values, identities, and sense of agency. In effect, McChesney has not only created a new political language for a new mode of democratic agency but also offered a distinct and powerful vision of hope and a foundation for individual and collective resistance.

—Henry Giroux, author, America’s Education Deficit and the War on Youth

Both a revelatory history of ideas and a table-thumping call to action, McChesney’s latest shows that it’s not only today’s media problems that have deep roots. Drawing on often overlooked history, McChesney shows a way out of powerlessness in the face of corporate media’s culture-choking grip. This book reminds us that we don’t have to watch monopoly media ride roughshod over our hopes for democratic communication!

—Janine Jackson, program director, Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting

Robert W. McChesney is the Gutgsell Endowed Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Illinois. He is the author of Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism Is Turning the Internet Against Democracy and, with John Nichols, Dollarocracy: How the Money and Media Election Complex is Destroying America, among other titles.