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Globalization from Below by Jeremy Brecher

Globalization from Below (2000)

by Jeremy Brecher, Tim Costello, Brendan Smith

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This book takes on globalization, arguing that while globalization from "above" (i.e. in service of elites in the form of transnational capitalism) does more harm than good, that globalization from "below" (grassroots social change) is necessary to fix current problems around the world.

I found this book to lack coherence, and also found it to be really inaccessible. I had a hard time following it and I don't think it's just because I was feeling sick while reading it. The authors repeat themselves a lot, and they also don't really have a main thesis or backbone in this book so it just sort of rambles on until it ends.

A few of the examples of effective change brought about by globalization from below in this book were also problematic, in my opinion. The authors write about how a pact was written to halt the usage of GMOs (genetically modified organisms) but anybody eating in the United States today can tell you that it obviously didn't do any good. See also: Nestlé and their campaign to get people in developing countries to use formula instead of breastfeed. The boycott and subsequent grassroots movements haven't stopped Nestlé at all.

The book was originally published in 2000 and it was interesting to read a book talking about how awful Pat Buchanan and Newt Gingrich are. But the last chapter in this version is an afterward which gives a lot of space to hating on Bush and Cheney, so I guess I still got my fill. ( )
  lemontwist | Jan 4, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jeremy Brecherprimary authorall editionscalculated
Costello, Timmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Smith, Brendanmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Epochal changes can be difficult to grasp -- especially when you are in their midst.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0896086224, Paperback)

World business leaders' greed-as-usual came to a dramatic halt last November when tens of thousands of protesters flooded the streets of Seattle and shut down the 1999 meeting of the World Trade Organization. This powerful but virtually unknown organization was spotlighted through coordinated actions by such diverse constituencies as environmental, labor, and human rights advocates, catching the attention of the world. The New York Times declared its amazement, "The surprisingly large protests point to the emergence of a new and vocal coalition." According to the Times, that movement includes "a wide swath of Main Street America."

As fewer people take greater control of the world's wealth, natural resources, and decision-making power, more and more people are feeling enraged at what amounts to the theft of democracy. Working with their neighbors to wrest power back from the multinational corporations, these citizens will find Globalization from Below an invaluable tool, a concise presentation of the reasons and the means to galvanize a winning challenge to the powers that be.

This accessible, practical guide lays out a strategy that will reverse the damaging effects of unfettered pursuit of profits: environmental degradation, a widening gap between rich and poor, and a lack of accountability in international organizations such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, and the World Trade Organization. Globalization from Below will inspire ordinary citizens and challenge veteran organizers as it delineates a process of forging lasting links with activists around the world to gain economic and environmental security now and in the future.

Jeremy Brecher is the author of Strike! Tim Costello is a union activist based in Boston and has co-authored several books with Brecher, including Global Village or Global Pillage. Brendan Smith is a former staff assistant to Representative Bernie Sanders (Independent, Vermont) and is currently working at Stone Soup, Inc. in Connecticut.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:49 -0400)

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