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Chris Hedges talked about his book Wages of Rebellion: The Moral Imperative of Revolt, in which he discusses the causes of revolution and resistances by looking at stories of rebels from around the world and throughout history. He also responded to viewer questions and comments.

He was interviewed while at BookCon, a book fair open to the public May 30-31, 2015, following BookExpo America, the publishing industry’s annual trade show, held May 27-29, 2015, at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City.

The program concluded with a video clip of an interview earlier in the week with publisher Adam Bellow.

Watch the video (about 36 minutes):  http://www.c-span.org/video/?326182-3/open-phones-chris-hedges

9 thoughts on “Must-see: Chris Hedges discusses the history, causes, and impacts of Revolution (VIDEO)

  1. Hedges is one of the very few journalists with anything insightful to say. He’s not very positive though about anything except the necessity of revolution. Thanks for your timely posting of this kind of info.

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  2. For whatever reason(s), Mr. Hedges (in response to DesertAbba) doesn’t specify that the revolution he’s talking about is a spiritual revolution. If during the interview the woman caller hadn’t asked him about what drives him personally, he might not have mentioned the book contains a heavy dose of spirituality. It seems he has some difficulty or constraint, surprising since he’s a Harvard Divinity school graduate, in emphasizing or balancing the spiritual with the physical (news, govt actions, etc) during public addresses. That balance absence was shown to me when surprised to hear him say the book has a lot to say about spirituality, because his talks come up short/lacking articulation in that department. Mr. Hedges’ message would become more powerful, not to say his writings lack power, but they would be even more so, if the physical/spiritual content were more balanced.

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    • As I see it, Hedges’ examination of revolution was intended to be confined within a socioeconomic context. Individual spirituality is a many-varied thing which doesn’t equate well to large scale enterprises such as politics and business. While it’s true that the Republican Party – for example – is heavily influenced by Christian fundamentalism on cultural issues, their economic philosophy is patently secular and inauspiciously amoral.

      Since I don’t know Hedges personally, I can’t speak to his spirituality. However, his writings on organized religion are quite negative and condemning. In his book American Fascists – the Christian Right and the War on America, he wrote in Chapter Nine – God: The Commercial:

      “When it is faith alone that will determine your well-being, when faith alone cures illness, overcomes emotional distress and ensures financial and physical security, there is no need for outside, secular institutions, for social-service and regulatory agencies, to exist. There is no need for fiscal or social responsibility.”

      Hedges then goes on to reveal the practical consequences of this religious animosity towards secular governance:

      “This new world of signs and wonders, of national and religious self-exaltation and elaborate spectacle, makes people feel good. It offers the promise of God’s protection and service. This new world promises to lift them up and thrill them, all the while calling on them to do away with the dwindling collectives that in fact heretofore have protected them. When individuals are finally emasculated and alone, bereft of the help of competing collectives, they cannot defend their rights or question the abuses of their overlords. When there is no other place to turn for help other than the world of miracles and magic, mediated by those who grow rich off those who suffer, when fealty to an ideology becomes a litmus test for individual worth, tyranny follows.”

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  3. Thanks, Bob, for responding to a reply semi-directed to me. I wasn’t going to respond, but will now. Whatever ‘Peacemaker’ means by ‘spiritual,’ what Hedges is talking about everywhere he mentions the necessity of revolution is that he is talking about a non-violent and public movement. He even speaks of needing but 2-3% of the population to bring regime change.Though the word revolution conjures the images of armed rebellion, Hedges clearly abhors such a possibility, though he acknowledges that such might occur if non-violence is not persuasive. All too often ‘spiritual’ means ‘private.’ ‘numinous’ and ‘other-worldly. Hedges is interested in a public response that might be awe-inspiring but is quite contemporary and secular.

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    • Exactly. In the video, Hedges clearly speaks out against anarchist groups who are singularly bent upon bringing down the current socioeconomic system for no other reason than to see its destruction.

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