Regular price: $20.72
Buy Now with 1 Credit
Buy Now for $20.72
In "The Importance of Being Earnest," Oscar Wilde's very upright English aristocrat Lady Bracknell says something like " I hate arguments; they are so often convincing."
Well, this book is a convincing and not-altogether-welcome argument, but an important and sobering one nevertheless. Using rock-solid evidence from lots of sources (modern and historical), Robert Kaplan tells us why we shouldn't dismiss geography as a determiner of politics simply because technology has made the world so "small". Our assumption that the whole world would be democratic if it just had the chance and the right example has tripped the US (and others) up most recently in Afghanistan and Iraq. The overturn of oppressive governments in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, and potentially Syria may not be turning out the way we thought/hoped they would either.
So, woe to those who don't know or heed the lessons of history and the enormous influence that geography has always had on the peoples of the world! I suppose this should be self-evident, but it wasn't made clear in the history classes I took.
Many of the theories of geopolitical history and warfare are quite detailed and scholarly and will be more than some readers wish to explore. The lessons, though, seem to me to be essential in understanding not only the past but in preparing for the future.
These truths may be unpalatable and frightening for those of us who believe that, at heart, all human beings basically think alike and want the same things. I suspect Kaplan's more realistic and more cautionary view of the world is correct, and we should all hear about it.
I was often uncomfortable listening to this, but I recommend it highly for those who want a clear-eyed view of what may be coming in the future!
17 of 17 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
I can only think of a very select few who'd be interested in this material.
What was one of the most memorable moments of The Revenge of Geography?
Learning modern military national strategy
What aspect of Michael Prichard’s performance would you have changed?
It could have been more lively
Any additional comments?
I think another review I read on this book nailed it. The book was slow to pick up, the first half was pretty boring and read like a dry text book, but after that it got more interesting.
Learning about why Russia, Turkey, China and some other nations did X, or what some of China's actions say about it, or the importance of Mexico was really interesting. Long detailed summaries of academics was... dry..
4 of 4 people found this review helpful