Growing Up Absurd

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Growing Up Absurd: Problems of Youth in the Organized Society
Growing Up Absurd.jpg
Author Paul Goodman
Country United States
Language English
Genre Sociology
Published 1960 (Vintage Books)
Media type Print (hardcover and paperback)
Pages 296

Growing Up Absurd: Problems of Youth in the Organized Society is a 1960 book by Paul Goodman.[1]


The book was rejected by nineteen publishers before being serialized in Commentary, and was eventually published with the assistance of Norman Podhoretz.[2] Goodman focuses on the erosion of traditional social institutions as a result of a world dominated by large corporations which fail to provide a meaningful existence to their workers.[3]


Goodman's book has been compared to Herbert Marcuse's Eros and Civilization (1955) and Norman O. Brown's Life Against Death (1959) by social and cultural theorist Todd Dufresne, who notes that its influence can be measured in terms of sales figures: over one hundred thousand copies of Growing Up Absurd were sold in its first few years.[1]



  1. ^ a b Dufresne 2000. p. 111.
  2. ^ Podhoretz 1999. pp. 20, 78.
  3. ^ Kirsch, Adam (15 November 2012). "Paul Goodman: America's classic bad teacher". New Statesman. Retrieved March 24, 2015. 


  • Dufresne, Todd (2000). Tales from the Freudian Crypt: The Death Drive in Text and Context. Stanford: Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-3885-8. 
  • Podhoretz, Norman (1999). Ex-Friends: Falling out with Allen Ginsberg, Lionel and Diana Trilling, Lillian Helman, Hannah Arendt, and Norman Mailer. New York: The Free Press. ISBN 0-684-85594-1.