Victor Davis Hanson Private Papers

The Game of Pseudo-Authenticity

Victor Davis Hanson // American Greatness

Americans always have been prone to reinventing themselves.

We now live in an age of radical social construction—a sort of expansive update on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s American notion of becoming anyone one pleases.

One common denominator, however, seems to govern today’s endless search for some sort of authenticity: a careerist effort to separate oneself from the assumed dominant and victimizing majority of white heterosexual and often Christian males.

Ironically, the quest for a superficial separation from the majority comes at a time when the majority has never been so committed to the promise of the Declaration of Independence and when equal opportunity has become a reality rather than an abstract ideal.

Yet in our new binary society, we all have a choice to be seen either as victims or victimizers. And thus we make the necessary adjustments for the often more lucrative and careerist choice.

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About Victor Davis Hanson

Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in Residence in Classics and Military History at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, a professor of Classics Emeritus at California State University, Fresno, and a nationally syndicated columnist for Tribune Media Services. He is also the Wayne & Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History, Hillsdale College, where he teaches each fall semester courses in military history and classical culture.

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