American Psychosis

 

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“There’s a kind of emotional incapacity to understand collapse, even when it’s facing you,” says journalist, author and activist Chris Hedges. Hedges compares the disorder of Trump’s America to what he observed as a foreign correspondent for The New York Times in the former East Germany and in Bosnia under Milosevic. Totalitarianism is nothing less than mass psychosis, and dissent is the only antidote, both as a basis of hope for society and as the only way for the individual to stay sane. Inspired by an essay Hedges published in Ad Busters, filmmaker Amanda Zackem sets Hedges’ pithy narration against mournful images of daily life in America, a suggestion that the truth is in plain view if one only chooses to look. “You can’t talk about hope if you can’t see reality,” Hedges says. “And reality is pretty bleak. But that’s the starting point.”

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