Saturday, July 10, 2004

The New York Times > Arts > Tilting at Windbags: A Crusade Against Rank: "'The theory has the potential to explain many things we just ignore as a given,' said Camilo Azcarate, Princeton University's ombudsman, who recently attended one of Mr. Fuller's lectures and bought several copies of his book to give to friends. Democracy and education should concentrate on creating virtuous citizens. This is exactly the kind of discussion we need to have.'
Mr. Fuller began postulating these theories on the Internet several years ago, and then brought them together last year in a book called 'Somebodies and Nobodies' (New Society Publishers), published recently in paperback. He can't answer how, exactly, his lofty ideas might translate into political or legal action. 'I don't see the form the movement will take,' he confessed in an interview at his home in Berkeley. 'But I don't feel too bad about it because Betty Friedan told me she didn't have any idea there would be a women's movement when she wrote `The Feminine Mystique.' You need five years of consciousness-raising before you find the handle.'
Ms. Friedan provided a blurb for his book. Other supporting blurbers include Bill Moyers, the political scientist Frances Fukuyama and the author Studs Terkel. So far the book has sold 33,000 copies (including bulk sales); and his Web site totals 2,000 to 3,000 visitors a week, his Web master, Melanie Hart, said.
Mr. Fuller's appeal nonetheless eludes some critics. In one of the few reviews of 'Somebodies and Nobodies,' Clay Evans, books editor of The Daily Camera newspaper in Boulder, Colo., was dismissive. Mr. Fuller's concepts, he wrote, 'were old when Jesus was making fishers of men.' "

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