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Henry Giroux





INTRODUCTION: Academia is impossibly far away for too many young people today. Scholar, author, and professor Henry Giroux demands more. For more than 25 years he has called for academia to be more accessible, more relevant, and more meaningful to all young people, particularly low-income and youth of color. This advocacy for young people, democracy, and social change has constantly grown: throughout the 1980s he challenged teachers and school leaders to transform learning into meaning; in the 1990s Henry took a critical eye towards popular culture and its effects on young people and society; today he holds the magnifying glass to American society, politics, education, and popular culture in general.


His analysis of the war against youth is unparalleled; his call for action, reflection, and responsibility to, for, and with young people is vital. Henry Giroux is an ally to all people fighting for the radical notion that democracy is more than a perfectionist, idyllic utopia: it is an action, an authority, and a requirement for our future. Giroux's writing leads many young people and adults down a path to understanding, creating, and challenging that future together, today.



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Selected Works About Young People Books by Henry Giroux


  The University in Chains: Confronting the Military-Industrial-Academic Complex - Confronting the influence of corporations and the military began in the 1950s with President Eisenhower's speech to the American people, and continues in 2007 with Giroux powerful new book. Young people are the targets of destruction in this new, anti-Democratic future we all share.    

America on the Edge: Henry Giroux on Politics, Culture, and Education - Corporations are raking in billions and the government is striking down harder than ever before as American youth are continually alienated, disenfranchised, and abandoned. Giroux shows powerful evidence that democracy has its head on the block as American politics, culture, and education are increasingly corporatized and commericialized. According to Giroux, the engines of popular culture and the education system have been used to strip young people of their hope and imagination. He shares powerful possibilities for the future, but only if young people are actively engaged in creating them.



The Giroux Reader - If it has ever been difficult to know where to start reading Giroux, this book resolves the issue. Collecting more than 25 articles from the last 30 years, this book clearly illustrates why Giroux is academia's greatest champion of critical youth studies. Dozens of articles lay out clear debates by analyzing the tools used to manufacture today's youth culture: popular media, education, and social work. Giroux does not beat around the bush about the outcomes: disposed, alienated, abandoned, and disenfranchised generations of American children and youth yearning for meaning, hope, and democracy. Luckily, he shares powerful strategies for how to get there, as well.



The Terror of Neoliberalism - In the world of youth action there are few voices that critically examine the assumptions that underscore the fields of youth programs. In the latest work from author/scholar Henry Giroux readers can learn about how the demise of funding, personnel, and ultimately, premise is devaluing the social structures that young people learn, live, and lead in. This analysis focuses on the role of social, economic, and political influences within the structures that young people occupy, including education, healthcare, and community in general. Giroux ultimately discerns that Democracy has been radically altered, and that hope- and action- are all we have. To read our full review of the book, click here>


Take Back High Education: Race, Youth, and the Crisis of Democracy in the post-Civil Rights Era - (2004). Giroux and Giroux analyze the effects of neo-liberal policies on American education by going after the effects of corporations, the military, and neoliberalism on universities. Hope is offered through the actions of students and educators nationwide. To read our full review of this book, click here>


The Abandoned Generation: Democracy Beyond the Culture of Fear - (2003). Corporate claws are tearing at the heart of American youth, while the media perpetuates the demonized and alienating perspective of youth as terrorists. Giroux exposes the effects of neoliberal policies on young people, and calls for action from politicians, educators, and youth. To read our full review of this book, click here>

Channel Surfing: Racism, the Media, and the Destruction of Today's Youth - (1998). A broad survey of the impacts of American popular culture on the collective psyche of adults and the individual minds of young people.  Giroux illustrates the various effects of the pervasive attitudes that are reflected in many youth programs: namely, the demonization and alienation of young people from community.

The Mouse That Roared: Disney and the End of Innocence - (1999). Offers an introduction to the reality behind the most popular media geared towards children today. Giroux identifies and examines several of Disney's most popular films and products, and explores their purpose, roles, stated intentions, and underlying assumptions. In doing so, he opens the doors to a wider cultural examination of popular society in a way that is accessible for a lot of people.

Fugitive Cultures: Race, Violence, and Youth - (1996). "Youth have once again become the object of public analysis. Headlines proliferate like dispatches from a combat zone..." So begins Giroux's exploration of the popular American culture responsible for demonizing young people today. As he carefully highlights the plethora of media and pop cultural references attacking youth, he shows their roots: racism and classism that are aimed at driving today's young people towards social alienation, and away from hope.

Stealing Innocence: Corporate Culture's War on Children - (1992). Giroux links the ongoing cultural attacks against young people to a larger system of social degradation via consumerism and marketplace economics. He illustrates how advertising, school shootings, and beauty pageants are tools for the overt repression of hope; he highlights the possibilities of education, youth work, and popular culture to actually become tools for a better future as well.

Education Still Under Siege : Second Edition - (1994). With Stanley Aronowitz. In this book the authors show how educators can deepen and develop democracy through expanded dialogues and exchanges across cultural lines. This book advocates the growing need to acknowledge and approach ever-present inequalities of education in the light of new political correctness, technology, and curricula.

Theory and Resistance in Education: A Pedagogy for the Opposition - (1983) At the beginning of the new millennium, educators, parents, and others should reevaluate what it means for adults and young people to grow up in a world that has been radically altered by a hyper capitalism that monopolizes the educational force of culture as it ruthlessly eliminates those public spheres not governed by the logic of the market. Giroux provides new theoretical and political tools for addressing how pedagogy, knowledge, resistance, and power can be analyzed within and across a variety of cultural spheres, including but not limited to the schools.

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Selected Articles About Young People by Henry Giroux


Kids for Sale - An article about Giroux's perspectives on young people by Eric Wiener.

An Educatorís Reflections on the Crisis in Education and Democracy in the US: An Interview with Henry A. Giroux

Translating the Future and the Promise of Democracy

Higher Education is More than a Corporate Logo

What Might Education Mean After Abu Ghraib: Revisiting Adornoís Politics of Education

Class Casualties: Disappearing Youth in the Age of George W. Bush

Doing Cultural Studies: Youth and the Challenge of Pedagogy 

Animating Youth: the Disnification of Children's Culture

Teenage Sexuality, Body Politics and the Pedagogy of Display

Racism and the Aesthetic of Hyperreal Violence

Slacking Off: Border Youth and Postmodern Education

Authoritarianismís Footprint and the War Against Youth

Why Arenít Children Included in the Debates About the Impending U.S. War with Iraq?

Public Time and Educated Hope: Educational Leadership and the War Against Youth

The Business of Public Education

Disney, Southern Baptists, & Childrenís Culture: The Magic Kingdom as Sodom and Gomorrah?

Zero Tolerance: Youth and the politics of domestic militarization


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Additional Texts Books by Henry Giroux


Against the New Authoritarianism: Politics After Abu Ghraib - (forthcoming).

America on the Edge: Henry Giroux on Politics, Culture, and Education - (forthcoming).

The Giroux Reader. Edited by Christopher Robbins - (forthcoming).

Beyond the Spectacle of Terrorism. - (forthcoming).

Border Crossings: Cultural Workers and the Politics of Education, 2nd Edition - (2005).

Schooling and the Struggle for Public Life, 2nd Edition - (2005).

Proto-Fascism in America: Neoliberalism and the Demise of Democracy - (2004). The US is engulfed in a terrorist campaign of catastrophic consequences, as the Bush Administration systematically destroys government responsibility and accountability, and the populace falls into a consumerist-induced sleep. Giroux connects the dots, offering a needed map for activists and educators. To read our full review of this book, click here>

Public Spaces/Private Lives: Democracy Beyond 9/11 - (2003).

Breaking in to the Movies: Film and the Culture of Politics - (2002).

Impure Acts: The Practical Politics of Cultural Studies - (2000).

Sociedad, Cultura Y Educacion - With Peter McLaren (1999).

Pedagogy and the Politics of Hope: Theory, Culture, and Schooling (1997).

Counternarratives - With Peter McLaren, Colin Lankshear, and Mike Cole (1996).

Critical Education in the New Information Age - With Manuel Castells, Ramon Flecha, Paulo Freire, Donaldo Macedo, and Paul Willis (1994).

Disturbing Pleasures: Learning Popular Culture - (1994).

Living Dangerously: Multiculturalism and the Politics of Culture - (1993).

Postmodern Education: Politics, Culture, and Social Criticism - With Stanley Aronowitz (1991).

Curriculum Discourse as Postmodernist Critical Practice (1990).

Teachers as Intellectuals: Toward a Critical Pedagogy of Learning. (1988).

Schooling and the Struggle for Public Life - (1988).

Education Under Siege: The Conservative, Liberal, and Radical Debate Over Schooling - With Stanley Aronowitz (1985).

Theory and Resistance in Education - (1983).

Critical Theory and Educational Practice - (1983).

Ideology, Culture and the Process of Schooling - (1981).


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Points to Ponder Quotes from Henry Giroux


As a concept, youth represents an inescapable intersection of the personal, social, political, and pedagogical. - from Fugitive Cultures


The futures we inherit are not of our own making, but the futures we create for generations of young people who follow us arise out of our ability to imagine a better world, recognize our responsibility to others, and define the success of a society to the degree that it can address the needs of coming generations to live in a world in which the obligations of a global democracy and individual responsibility mutually inform each other. - from here.


Justice is the merging of hope, reason, imagination, and moral responsibility tempered by the recognition that the pursuit of happiness and the good life is a collective affair. - from here.


Where I grew up learning was a collective activity. But when I got to school and tried to share learning with other students that was called cheating. The curriculum sent the clear message to me that learning was a highly individualistic, almost secretive, endeavor. My working-class experience didn't count. Not only did it not count, it was disparaged. - from Border Crossings


The class and racial war being waged against young people is most evident in the ways in which schools are being militarized with the addition of armed guards, barbed-wired security fences, and "lock down drills." As educators turn over their responsibility for school safety to the police, the new security culture in public schools has turned them into "learning prisons." It would be a tragic mistake for those of us on the left either to separate the war in Iraq from the many problems Americans, young people in particular, face at home, or fail to recognize how war is being waged by this government on multiple fronts. - from here.


Instead of providing a decent education to poor young people, American society offers them the growing potential of being incarcerated; buttressed by the fact that the U.S. is one of the only countries in the world that sentences minors to death and spends three times more on each incarcerated citizen than on each public school pupil. - from here.


Any discourse about the future has to begin with the issue of youth because more than any other group they embody the projected dreams, desires, and commitment of a society's obligations to the future. - from The Terror of Neoliberalism


Suggested Links Related to Henry Giroux


Henry Giroux's Homepage - The complete biographical source on Giroux, including his biography, interviews, and more.

About Henry Giroux - From the Rage and Hope website, a popular summary of critical pedagogy.

Departure of PSU Professor Stirs Higher Education Debate - An expose of Giroux's recent departure from the American academy.

McMaster Attracts Widely Acclaimed US Scholar Henry Giroux - Highlighting Giroux's new academic home in Canada.


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