Google Me: One-Click Democracy

Written by Barbara Cassin | Translated by Michael Syrotinski
Fordham University Press
October 2017

Google is a champion of cultural democracy, but without culture and without democracy.

" In this witty and polemical critique the philosopher Barbara Cassin takes aim at Google and our culture of big data. While impressed by the search engine's brilliance, Cassin enlists her formidable knowledge of the rhetorical tradition to challenge on the Google myth of a "good" tech company and its "democracy of clicks," laying bare the philosophical poverty and political naiveté that underwrites its founding slogans: "Organize the world's information," and "Don't be evil." For Cassin, this conjunction of globalizing knowledge and moral imperative is frighteningly similar to the way American demagogues justify their own universalizing mission before the world.

About the Author: Barbara Cassin

Barbara Cassin is Director of Research at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in Paris and President of the Collège International de Philosophie. Her books in English include her widely discussed Dictionary of Untranslatables: A Philosophical Lexicon, Sophistical Practice: Toward a Consistent Relativism (Fordham), Nostalgia: When Are We Ever at Home? (Fordham, winner of the French Voices Grand Prize), and, with Alain Badiou, Heidegger: His Life and His Philosophy.
Michael Syrotinski is Marshall Chair of French at the University of Glasgow.


“A readable and entertaining, yet serious indictment of informational culture. Cassin’s reflections give us a critical space to consider the cost of our acquiescence to the quantification of culture that lies at the heart of today’s information-driven capitalism.” ―Mark B. N. Hansen Duke University

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