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WOF 416: The Philosophical Roots of Wokeism

Today, we’re excited to share with you Bishop Barron’s keynote talk from the 2023 Acton University conference, hosted by The Acton Institute.

“Wokeism” is arguably the most influential public philosophy in our country today. It has worked its way into the minds and hearts of our young people, into the world of entertainment, and into the boardrooms of powerful corporations. But what is it precisely, and where did it come from?

Bishop Barron argues in his presentation that “wokeism” is a popularization of critical theory, a farrago of ideas coming out of the French and German academies in the mid-twentieth century. Until we understand its origins in the thinking of Adorno, Horkheimer, Derrida, Marcuse, and Foucault, we will not know how critically to engage this dangerous philosophy.

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