Shows about Nothing Nihilism in Popluar Culture
Shows about Nothing Nihilism in Popluar Culture   -     By: Thomas S. Hibbs
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Shows about Nothing Nihilism in Popluar Culture

Baylor University Press / 2012 / Paperback

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Stock No: WW583788


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Product Description

American media is the subject of constant critique. The seeming exaltation of violence, sex, and illicit themes creates virulent opponents of the media and its content. But could it be that the American experiment--even the quest to fulfill the American Dream--actually encourages media to act in a way that deserves these critiques?

In Shows about Nothing: Nihilism in Popular Culture Thomas Hibbs probes deep into the canon of all things screen and uncovers the disturbing truths about the contemporary media landscape. Beneath the shallow facade of evil lies the Nietzschean framework of nihilism--a nothingness that undermines notions of right and wrong while destroying any sense of meaning or purpose. Yet what makes this nihilism even more profound is Nietzsche's warning that liberal democracies are especially susceptible to such nothingness. In his examples, Hibbs shows how the popular story lines and characters of our time often rule out any possibility of making a right decision. Ultimately, Shows about Nothing toes the line between something and nothing to suggest how popular culture can move beyond nihilism.

Product Information

Title: Shows about Nothing Nihilism in Popluar Culture
By: Thomas S. Hibbs
Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 250
Vendor: Baylor University Press
Publication Date: 2012
Weight: 14 ounces
ISBN: 1602583781
ISBN-13: 9781602583788
Stock No: WW583788

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Publisher's Description

American media is the subject of constant critique. The seeming exaltation of violence, sex, and illicit themes creates virulent opponents of the media and its content. But could it be that the American experiment--even the quest to fulfill the American Dream--actually encourages media to act in a way that deserves these critiques?


Probing deep into the canon of all things screen, Thomas Hibbs uncovers the disturbing truths about the contemporary media landscape. Beneath the shallow facade of evil lies the Nietzschean framework of nihilism--a nothingness that undermines notions of right and wrong while destroying any sense of meaning or purpose. Yet what makes this nihilism even more profound is Nietzsche's warning that liberal democracies are especially susceptible to such nothingness. In his examples, Hibbs shows how the popular story lines and characters of our time often rule out any possibility of making a "right" decision. Ultimately, Shows about Nothing toes the line between something and nothing to suggest how popular culture can move beyond nihilism.

Author Bio

Thomas S. Hibbs is Distinguished Professor of Ethics & Culture and Dean of the Honors College at Baylor University. He is the author of Arts of Darkness: American Noir and the Quest for Redemption.

Editorial Reviews

... an entertaining yet deeply insightful discussion of the relationship between nihilism and popular culture.


The best way to understand the influence of Nietzsche on popular culture.


Hibbs has a resplendent knowledge of, and a chagrined appreciation for, popular culture.

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