lundi, février 25, 2008

Madam, He's Adam

Take a look at this wonderful article from The New Republic.

The author, John Judis, describes Obama as a new Adamic figure-one that is essentially American in his iconography. Unlike the far older, and oft jaded nations of Europe, we seem to have a great desire to renew ourselves in the sunny demeanour of politicans who promise us hope and a new birth-or more accurately, perhaps, renewal.

While I agree that Obama is an Adam figure, and that he has great precedent among American male politicians, I'm not sure I think voters are naive enough to believe the country can start completely anew. At least, I hope they aren't.

Although Hillary Clinton doesn't fit this particular archetype, it is interesting to speculate what women in our nation's history have summoned up this kind of yearning. Suffragettes? Revivalist preachers? Talk-show hosts like Oprah?

As the writer comments, such politicians have often faced thorny cultural issues, like slavery-and have had to give in to the powerful projections and defenses of the partisans.

If I was forced to chose between skepticism and hope, it would be a struggle. I am old enough to have seen many promises unkept.

Yet even this skeptical journalist hopes Obama succeeds. The cordial he offers has been off the shelves for so many years most of us have forgotten what it tastes like.

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