Review of Happily Hippie-American

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Fine Brand
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Review of Happily Hippie-American

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[Following is an official review of "Happily Hippie-American" by Paul Dougan.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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Happily Hippie-American is a re-imagining of the hippie culture and its effects on American society. It is an emphatic attempt to redefine the concept of being a hippie and positively alter its perception and consequent reception in America’s society. It is a call to arms for all those of the hippie persuasion, encouraging them to take pride in their culture and philosophy and to shrug off the negative impression that their way of life has been given. It attempts to debunk several long-held beliefs about the hippie culture and convince the reader that nothing is wrong or inherently counter-productive about it.

The book asserts that hippies are a valid ethnicity and details its ethnogenesis as proof of this validity. It points out the harmful effects of anti-hippie culture on American democracy and asserts that these anti-hippie sentiments are damaging American socioeconomics. It also highlights some world-renowned accomplishments inspired by hippie culture, further emphasizing its bold and inspirational claim that America is a better place for the hippies it has and would do well to encourage the expansion of the culture. Read this book to find out more.

One strong point that this book has is its systematic approach to its argument. Paul Dougan begins by clearly explaining his objectives and targets and then proceeds to detail his claims to the reader. Where expansion is needed to clarify an argument, the writer attends to the clarification first and then discusses his points. Though the writer's main aim is to introduce new ideologies to the reader, he does not neglect to address any preconceived notions that would discredit his arguments. This approach allows the reader to follow his train of thought almost seamlessly, regardless of whether or not he or she may agree.

My primary detraction from this body of work is due to the one-sided nature of the argument. While an appreciable amount of effort was put into solidifying the arguments posited within the book, not enough emphasis was put on disproving the arguments common to the conceptual opposition, the so-called conservative anti-hippie demagoguery. An argument which consists solely of the strengths of its postulates and ideas is ultimately incomplete. This is because while you may convincingly express your assertions, nothing has been done to prove that the assertions of the opposing argument are incorrect. So a complete argument should not only prove why one is right but why his opposition is wrong. This was not done adequately in this book, in my opinion.

This book is educative, convincing in its argument, and clear and unencumbered in its expression. It is well-written and professionally edited. I rate this book four out of four stars, my only detraction being due to its lack of treatment of the opposing argument. I recommend this book to anyone who has a vested interest or is generally curious about America’s history and culture.

Happily Hippie-American
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