• The Rise of the New Puritans

  • Fighting Back Against Progressives’ War on Fun
  • By: Noah Rothman
  • Narrated by: Noah Rothman
  • Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (107 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Commentary editor Noah Rothman takes aim at the “woke left”, comparing them to stern, joyless Puritans who seek to make every daily choice a matter of life or death and break society down into the saintly or sinful.

In Noah Rothman’s view, the left used to be the party of the hippies and the free spirits. Now it’s home to woke scolds and humorless ideologues. From entertainment to food to comedy to family life, there’s no area of society the new leftists don’t want to control, he argues.

These new joyless progressives only dislike witch hunts when they’re not the ones running them. Like their puritanical forebears, new leftists do not abide forms of pleasure that distract from the great work of our time—righting the wrongs of America’s white patriarchal heritage. As Rothman sees it, Progressive Puritans are committed to waging a war on decadence, frivolity, and pleasure for its own sake. In pursuit of a better world, these people are making fools of themselves and impoverishing their compatriots.

In this hard-hitting critique, Rothman shows no mercy as he uncovers the historical roots of the left’s war on fun and counsels us to rediscover the freedom and joy at the heart of the American experiment.

©2022 Noah Rothman (P)2022 HarperCollins Publishers

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Great, fast summer read

The insights will make the current headlines seem a little less crazy. The history lessons are fascinating and a primer of our colonial past. I especially enjoyed Noah’s reading. It was one of those fast reads that was done over a weekend. Enjoy, and never stifle your laughter.

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A disappointment

Like the author, I am deeply suspicious of the growing trend towards totalitarianism on all sides of the political sphere, but this book is a very shallow and at times disingenuous reckoning with that tendency on the left. Designed mostly to play well on conservative media, I’m sure the author will dine out sumptuously on this dreck for a few news cycles, but the lightweight approach ensures it will be handily dismissed by those who might benefit most from a reconsideration of their puritanism. Here’s hoping someone else takes up this terrifying topic in a more substantive way.

2 people found this helpful

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Moral Minority: Uh-Yes, Rothman!

Brilliant must read (hear). The author is both a trained thespian and leading public intellectual, so the sophisticated performance is as pleasing to listen to as the incisive analysis is illuminating to consider. Moreover, he’s right. Sanctimonious scolds have, indeed, taken over the left, and now hector us ceaselessly over the supposed moral failings inherent to our vocabulary, diet, art, entertainment, athletics, clothing, pronouns, relationships, children’s books, you name it. Every little thing is now seen as fraught with momentous significance by the hysterical SJW, whose righteous mission is to tutor the rest of us slobs in progressive perfectionism. However, as Noah Rothman’s clever takedown shows—it’s bs. Arm yourself with his insights and you’ll never be at a loss for thoughtful, reasoned comebacks when confronted by these violent “medievals with lattes,” our grim Puritans. Enjoy!

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Fighting the culture wars

What a great read ! It was interesting to learn about the parallels between the progressive left and the Puritans. Rothman takes us on a historical deep dive of original puritan religion and cross references it with anecdotal media stories of how old puritan ways of curtailing fun snuck into our everyday lives. Todays we live in a world filled with the fear of being canceled, the metaphoric witch hunt, for the non pc comedy we like, the fusion food we eat and the culturally appropriated cloths we wear. Rothman’s advice to us is to just live a little and laugh at the character they are. None of these ideas are bad or unjust, it’s just the extremes that they are taken that have gone to far in their puritanical rhetoric.

1 person found this helpful

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