Cover

pdf iconDownload PDF
 

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

pdf iconDownload PDF
 

Contents

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. xviii-xx

read more

Introduction: You Are Being Sarcastic, Dude

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 1-14

I remember verbatim the above three lines from an episode of , that always calibrated cultural barometer.* Originally aired in 1996, this Simpsonian haiku remains just as telling today. And one can imaginatively supply a last line: “Whatever.” Further rejection is just not worth the time or effort. ...

read more

1. Good Morning, America

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 15-72

Rosenblatt continued by unleashing a hefty amount of anger against “the vain stupidity of ironists” who try to see through everything. There will be no room in this new and chastened time for “columnists” and “pop-culture makers,” people who think that they’re “oh-so-cool.”* ...

read more

2. Excursus on the Genesis of Irony as a Worldview

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 73-86

Nostalgia often plays a role in how we relate to the present, how we identify the present’s outstanding characteristics, even as one of relentless appropriation. But this extended note is a sidetrack: irony is also a way that we are relating to the present—a way that keeps some unpleasant realities at bay.1 ...

read more

3. European Romanticism Ushers in New Meanings of Irony

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 87-110

Entirely new, overarching implications of irony that escaped the confines of unreflective, if very effective, usage were ushered in with the unraveling of some Enlightenment hopes in Europe. Continuing religious conflicts and persecution, political fragmentation, and Napoleonic sorties contributed to the faint sounds of European romanticism, ...

read more

4. Irony and Civic Trust

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 111-146

Since the inception in the late eighteenth century of serious dialogue about irony as a social attitude, it has been conceived of as corrosive to social life, seen as an ethical show-stopper, brandished as a poor—if not impossible—neighbor and confidante. This belief has often originated from the perspective of a religiously rooted ...

read more

5. Trust, Civil Society, and the Social Contract

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 147-172

The discussion about civic trust brings other concerns with it. It assumes certain values that irony was conceived of as eradicating: trust, sincerity, authenticity, and seriousness. While irony does indeed seem to trump these values, as an attitude it hides what it means under the guise of its opposite. ...

read more

6. The Descent of Inner Dependence

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 173-194

There is a larger picture prior to the modernist model of how irony functions within the subject; it’s also a model essential to the role of the self in the social contract. Romanticism requires a certain view of the self to operate. Civility operates upon the same logic of social distancing. ...

read more

7. Inward, Christian Soldiers

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 195-226

Long before September 11, of course, the idea that American society has been in decline because of a remove of citizens’ private lives from the public sphere, a lack of commitment to one’s public duties and responsibilities, has worried many interested in the health of the social body. ...

read more

8. Conclusion (i.e. Everything Summed Up Nicely)

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 227-234

Attempts to pull irony and some contrary element apart, to oppose “irony” and “earnestness,” “sincerity,” or “moral values”—as the debate over the “end of irony” attempts to do—will never work. Not only have political figures and leaders of business and public life been repeatedly shown to be corrupt and hypocritical ...

Notes

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 235-246

Bibliography

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 247-256

Index

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 257-274