Death's Dream Kingdom: The American Psyche Since 9-11

Book cover: “Death's Dream Kingdom#8221;

How does religious fundamentalism assault our psychological and cultural well-being? In what ways is the domestic terrorism practiced by the Bush Administration a greater threat to our way of life than any danger from outside our borders? Answering these and related questions takes us to the heart of the psychosis that defines the Bush Administration as sign and symptom of a disorder that characterizes American society today. A number of specific analyses flesh out this diagnosis by developing a theory of ideology as the emotional and psychological manipulation that binds subjects to the dictates of a hypnotic mass consciousness: the sado-masochist hysteria of Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ; the atrocities at Abu Ghraib prison; the genocidal use of depleted-uranium weaponry in Iraq and the apocalyptic scenario driving the Christian fundamentalist assault on our basic freedoms. On the basis of these examinations, this book advances a new understanding of the three topics that have preoccupied social discourse since 9-11: terror, evil and fundamentalism. From this inquiry emerges the contours of an ethic that explains the current ideological paralysis of the left while offering a novel way both to understand contemporary history and to act within it.

“Davis writes with fervor, vision, and keen moral appreciation of our condition. He encourages us to see what we fear to see, to say what we fear to say. This book is illuminating, challenging, fierce.”

Michael Eigen, author of The Sensitive Self, Rage and Ecstasy

To purchase, call (888) 330-8477 or visit

Read excerpts: Chapter 3–Passion of the Christ in Abu Ghraib, Chapter 4–Weapons of Mass Destruction Found in Iraq, and Chapter 7–Bible Says: The Psychology of Christian Fundamentalism

Additional Information:

Purchase details:

5.5 x 8.5. 304 pgs. (2006)
ISBN Cloth: 0-7453-2469-X
ISBN Paper: 0-7453-2468-1
Published by Pluto Press. Distributed in the United States by MPS.
phone – (888) 330-8477
fax – (540) 672-7540
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Chapter 3: Passion of the Christ in Abu Ghraib
Chapter 4: Weapons of Mass Destruction Found in Iraq
Chapter 7: Bible Says: The Psychology of Christian Fundamentalism

Table of Contents:

Preface: The Way We Were
2Living in Death’s Dream Kingdom: The Psychotic Core of Capitalist Ideology
3Passion of the Christ in Abu Ghraib
4Weapons of Mass Destruction Found in Iraq
5A Humanistic Response to 9-11: Robert Jay Lifton, or the Nostalgia for Guarantees
6A Postmodernist Response to 9-11: Slavoj Zizek, or the Jouissance of an Abstract Hegelian
7Bible Says: The Psychology of Christian Fundamentalism
8The Psychodynamics of Terror
9Evil: As Psychological Process and as Philosophic Concept
10Men of Good Will: Toward an Ethic of the Tragic