We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.co.uk/access.
 >   > 
Why America Failed: The Roots of Imperial Decline | [Morris Berman]

Why America Failed: The Roots of Imperial Decline

In his most ambitious work to date, Morris Berman looks at the "why" of American decline. This book probes America's commitment to economic liberalism and free enterprise, stretching back to the late 16th century, and shows how this ideology, along with that of technological progress, rendered any alternative marginal to American history. Berman maintains, more than anything else, that this one-sided vision of the country's purpose finally did our nation in.
Regular Price:£15.19
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • £7.99/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Why America Failed shows how, from its birth as a nation of "hustlers" to its collapse as an empire, the tools of the country's expansion proved to be the instruments of its demise.

This is the third and most engaging volume of Morris Berman's trilogy on the decline of the American empire. In The Twilight of American Culture, Berman examined the internal factors of that decline, showing that they were identical to those of Rome in its late-empire phase. In Dark Ages America, he explored the external factors - e.g., the fact that both empires were ultimately attacked from the outside - and the relationship between the events of 9/11 and the history of U.S. foreign policy.

In his most ambitious work to date, Berman looks at the "why" of it all. This book:

  • Probes America's commitment to economic liberalism and free enterprise, stretching back to the late 16th century, and shows how this ideology, along with that of technological progress, rendered any alternative marginal to American history
  • Maintains, more than anything else, that this one-sided vision of the country's purpose finally did our nation in

Why America Failed is a controversial work, one that will shock, anger, and transform its listeners. The book is a stimulating and provocative explanation of how we managed to wind up in our current situation: economically weak, politically passe, socially divided, and culturally adrift. It is a tour de force, a powerful conclusion to Berman's study of American imperial decline.

©2012 Morris Berman (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Morris Berman is one of our most prescient and important social and cultural critics. He marries a laser-like intelligence with a deep moral core. His writing is as lucid and crisp as it is insightful. His newest book, Why America Failed, rips open the dark and dying carcass of empire. His analysis is sobering and often depressing. But the truth at this stage in the game is depressing, very depressing. Those who refuse to face this truth because it is unpleasant, because it does not inspire happy thoughts or offer false hope, are in flight from the real. The collective retreat into self-delusion has transformed huge swaths of the American populace into a peculiar species of adult-children who live in a Peter Pan world of make believe where reality is never permitted to be animpediment to desire. It is too bad Berman, who sees and writes about all this with a stunning clarity, lives in Mexico. It gets lonely up here." (Chris Hedges, author of Death of the Liberal Class and Empire of Illusion)

"Morris Berman's masterpiece is a brutally honest, wonderfully crafted,exceptionally well-documented treatise on how America was spawned, several hundred years ago, to devour its offspring - financially, socially, and technologically. Why America Failed shines a harsh, unavoidable light upon the cunning business mindset at the core of America's creation, expansion, and devolution. Berman describes with stunning clarity how and why the 'hustler' mentality, upon which our country was predicated, eviscerated alternative moral or social doctrines, and thus incorporated the seeds of our self-destruction from its very inception. This book is as uncomfortable to read as it is impossible to miss." (Nomi Prins, author of It Takes a Pillage and Other People's Money)

"Morris Berman noticed that it's not morning in America anymore. His message may wake up the millions who are oversleeping while the late-day storm clouds gather over this land." (James Howard Kunstler, author of The Long Emergency)

What Members Say


There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Sort by:
  • Ted
    Nevada
    02/02/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Some truth. And a lot of nonsense."

    I can't disagree with many of Morris Berman's assertions.
    Yes, moronic, vulgar, violent aspects of U.S. culture abound.
    Americans are not exceptional. They are not exempt from human frailty and sin.

    But were things better in any of the Good Old Days? During the days of
    Berman's "Southern graciousness?" Is progress really an illusion? Not if
    you know much history. Not if you have had my experience of working
    with young people in K-12 schools. The Net Generation is far smarter and
    more compassionate than their elders. Great social progress has been made.

    Berman comes across as an "angry old white guy." Not the kind you see on
    Fox. The kind found on the academic Left, whose life experience is spent in
    academe, dealing with abstractions. The messy concrete realities that make
    up the hustle of working life are seen from afar. That is for the "hustlers" Berman disdains.

    The author's un-nuanced criticism of technology also expresses an elitist mindset.
    Neo-Luddite ranting on "those kids and their gadgets" is another marker of the
    angry-old-white-guy syndrome.

    Berman hates TV, even likes the Taliban prohibition of satellite dishes in
    Afghanistan. I bought his Audible book because I saw him on CSPAN Book TV
    promoting his book. Is he going to turn down his cut from those hustlers at Amazon?

    Presumably the author does not cross the Mexican border on a burro when he
    comes to the U.S. Bet he would prefer the speed and safety of flying Aeromexico,
    bristling with avionics technology. Thanks to hustlers like William Boeing, Donald Douglas, et al.

    Probably he avails himself of the wonders of the electric grid in Mexico City.
    Brought to him by hustlers like Nikola Tesla, Thomas Edison, George Westinghouse.
    Berman might have a more positive view of progress if he saw studies showing that
    human lifespan is doubled in areas with electricity. Beats "natural living" in Chiapas.

    Maybe a high-tech hospital in Mexico City is the preference for medical problems, too.
    Hopefully he is drinking purified water, getting vaccinations, eating safe food, and
    using modern sewer systems--brought to us by technology hustlers.

    "Why America Failed: The Roots of Imperial Decline" has plenty of cogent points and
    is done by that rarity of academe: a good writer. But it is unbalanced. And hypocritical.
    University age students, and others without much life experience, are likely to buy into it
    uncritically. To do so is to buy into nihilistic hopelessness.









    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Steven
    Houston, TX, United States
    24/05/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic Analysis"

    For all of you trying to see through the fog of American culture, here is the lens and the candle. Not a happy book, more like 'the truth hurts' but Berman certainly covers all the bases. Unexpected coverage of the Civil War proved fascinating and salient as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.