I'm bothered. I'm bothered because more people aren't talking about this book.
I'll put my cards on the table: Lawrence Grossberg was (and always will be) my teacher, my mentor. But that's not why I'm disturbed about the generally quiet reception of his important new book, "Caught in the Crossfire: Kids, Politics, and America's Future" (Paradigm Publishers, 2005). What's even more troubling is the minimal amount of attention that his argument seems to be receiving within the culture at large. The growing crackdown on kids--criminalizing, marginalizing, and otherwise mistreating them--is no more and no less than an attack on the future, Grossberg argues, an attack on "American modernity" itself. If we take seriously what Lefebvre says in the quotation atop this blog, then we should be fearful of the implications of America's war on kids. What would it mean to foreclose on the very possibility of the future, to fold it up so tightly that we no longer can find it amid all the twists, turns, pleats, knots, and layers?
Read this book, promote it, review it (not just in academic journals), and do what you can to engage its empirical and theoretical findings. It would be a cliche (is that so wrong?) to say, "do it for the children." If cliches don't get you going, then why not do it for the future?
P.S. Hey, Paradigm Publishers! Why not activate Amazon.com's "search inside" features for "Caught in the Crossfire," so that people can browse the text online?