This book explores the nature of political correctness as but one of the faces of today’s widespread sociocultural hypocrisy; it is a critique of a phenomenon that constitutes a threat to the Enlightenment hope that humanity might one day achieve maturity. The author identifies political correctness as a drive towards shallowness, anti-intellectualism and self-flagellation – and a culture in which perception is everything. With attention to the emergence and growth of political correctness in a country, Greece, where it can be observed from a bottom-up perspective, this volume demonstrates that although at first glance it appears as a well-intentioned social movement informed by values with which no moral and judicious person could disagree, political correctness actually represents, at best, a distraction from graver concerns; at worst, a manifestation of human foolishness and malevolence. A study of the destruction of honest and rational debate, characterized by trials of intention, often by social media, Political Correctness: A Sociocultural Black Hole will appeal to scholars of sociology and media studies with interests in contemporary political culture.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction: A Lannister Always Dates His Pets
2. PC in Greece: An Atypical, yet Revealing, Case Study
3. A Culture of Hypocrisy
4. The Story Thus Far: A Critical Review of the Literature on PC
5. Alceste… and the Rest: A Misanthropic Pessimist’s Outlook on PC
6. [In Lieu of a] Conclusion
Thomas Tsakalakis is Adjunct Lecturer in Cultural Studies at the University of Athens, Greece.
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‘What is to be done when a tool forged to support social justice turns against itself? Thomas Tsakalakis’s book addresses the challenges posited by political correctness (PC) when its initially benevolent premises produce opposite and absurd results … The great merit of the book is that it exposes and fills in the logical gap in the arbitrariness of certain PC-generated arguments. Through the strong combination of empirical cases and conceptual analysis, the book contributes to cultural/media, political, and philosophical theory by means of metacritical, metaepistemological, and metaethical investigations ... Tsakalakis’s book is significant enough to herald the establishment of a PC studies niche.’ – Vassilis Galanos, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice