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parsed(2011-05-03) - pubdate: 2011-05-03
pub date: 1304398800
today: 1718686800, pubdate > today = false

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The Authenticity Hoax

How We Get Lost Finding Ourselves

May 3, 2011 | Trade paperback
ISBN: 9780771071065
Reader Reward Price: $18.90 info
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One of Canada's hippest, smartest cultural critics takes on the West's defining value.

We live in a world increasingly dominated by the fake, the prepackaged, the artificial: fast food, scripted reality TV shows, Facebook "friends," and fraudulent memoirs. But people everywhere are demanding the exact opposite, heralding "authenticity" as the cure for isolated individualism and shallow consumerism. Restaurants promote the authenticity of their cuisine, while condo developers promote authentic loft living and book reviewers regularly praise the authenticity of a new writer's voice.

International bestselling author Andrew Potter brilliantly unpacks our modern obsession with authenticity. In this perceptive and thought-provoking blend of pop culture, history, and philosophy, he finds that far from serving as a refuge from modern living, the search for authenticity often creates the very problems it's meant to solve.

About this Author

ANDREW POTTER is the coauthor of the international bestseller The Rebel Sell. A journalist and writer, he holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Toronto, and he is a former assistant professor at Trent University in Peterborough. He has also taught at the University of Toronto and the University of Quebec at Montreal. He was previously a public affairs columnist with Maclean's and an editor with Canadian Business magazine. He is now Associate Professor at the Max Bell School of Public Policy at McGill University.

ISBN: 9780771071065
Format: Trade paperback
Pages: 320
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Published: 2011-05-03


"It's a fascinating approach to a fascinating subject . . . Written in a lively style that invites the reader to argue with the author, the book, at the very least, will turn the reader's eye inward, and make us take a good, long look at the way we present ourselves to the world."

"Unique insights on every page and breathtaking in scope, The Authenticity Hoax is a useful guide to understanding what we humans are all about." 
--John Zogby, Chairman of Zogby International and author of The Way We'll Be

"A totally real, genuine, authentic book about why you shoudn't believe any of those words. And it's genuinely good."  
--Gregg Easterbrook, author, Sonic Boom

"In The Authenticity Hoax, Andrew Potter masters two of the trickiest balancing acts in contemporary social criticism.  He takes on a wide range of highbrow sources -- from John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau to Walter Benjamin and Lionel Trilling -- and he makes them accessible without reducing them to cartoons.  And he comments on an even wider range of pop culture items -- from The Matrix to skateboarding to locally grown produce and the YouTube aesthetic -- in a tone that's pitched just right, each mordant insight framed in terms that show he understands the appeal of the quest for authenticity, even as he unmasks it.  That's the kind of criticism that changes minds." ­
--Thomas de Zengotita, author of Mediated
"A provocative meditation on the way we live now." 
--Kirkus Reviews

"A shrewd and lively discussion peppered with pop culture references and a stimulating reappraisal of the romantic strain in modern life." 
--Publishers Weekly

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