Of Paradise and Power

  • by Robert Kagan
  • Narrated by Robertson Dean
  • 2 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

When historians want to find out about the ideas that motivated American foreign policy in the early years of the twenty-first century, they would do well to read this book. Robert Kagan has formally set out a case for unilateralism on the part of the United States, as opposed to the multilateralism now characteristic of Europe. The U.S. is now quicker to use military force, less patient with diplomacy, and more willing to coerce or bribe other nations to achieve a desired result. By contrast, European nations are trying to work together, preserving the ties of diplomacy, cooperation, long-term problem solving, and international law, all of which are signs of weakness. Kagan believes that the United States can disregard a weak Europe, and have a free hand in pursuing its global interests.

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What the Critics Say

"The most controversial big-think essay of the season." (U.S. News and World Report)
"This book deserves to be read by all conscientious citizens." (Booklist)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Quick and pithy listen

This is an excellent synopsis of the high-level differences between modern European and American foreign policy. Kagan deftly weaves his premise that America and Europe are diverging in their interests, and not necessarily to their mutual detriment. While written from an American (and conservative) perspective, I found it to be fairly well unbiased and non-partisan for all ideologues to enjoy. Kagan also does an excellent job of making his case in a short space, where lesser authors would take much longer.
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- Erik Fosshage

Very Well Done

As I listened, throuroghly enjoying Kagan's insights, thoughts and at times, wit, I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop -- the political statement that would show a bias or would ruin an otherwise very good analysis of current trans-atlantic politics. It never came. It is a fully enjoyable evaluation of the past and potential future. I highly recommend it.
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Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-10-2003
  • Publisher: Books on Tape