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Understanding Power: The Indispensable Chomsky | [Noam Chomsky, Peter R. Mitchell (editor), John Schoeffel (editor)]

Understanding Power: The Indispensable Chomsky

A major new collection from "arguably the most important intellectual alive" (The New York Times). Noam Chomsky is universally accepted as one of the preeminent public intellectuals of the modern era. Over the past thirty years, broadly diverse audiences have gathered to attend his sold-out lectures. Now, in Understanding Power, Peter Mitchell and John Schoeffel have assembled the best of Chomsky's recent talks on the past, present, and future of the politics of power.
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Publisher's Summary

A major new collection from "arguably the most important intellectual alive" (The New York Times). Noam Chomsky is universally accepted as one of the preeminent public intellectuals of the modern era. Over the past thirty years, broadly diverse audiences have gathered to attend his sold-out lectures. Now, in Understanding Power, Peter Mitchell and John Schoeffel have assembled the best of Chomsky's recent talks on the past, present, and future of the politics of power.

In a series of enlightening and wide-ranging discussions, all published here for the first time, Chomsky radically reinterprets the events of the past three decades, covering topics from foreign policy during Vietnam to the decline of welfare under the Clinton administration. And as he elucidates the connection between America's imperialistic foreign policy and the decline of domestic social services, Chomsky also discerns the necessary steps to take toward social change. With an eye to political activism and the media's role in popular struggle, as well as U.S. foreign and domestic policy, Understanding Power offers a sweeping critique of the world around us and is definitive Chomsky. Characterized by Chomsky's accessible and informative style, this is the ideal book for those new to his work as well as for those who have been listening for years.

©2002 Noam Chomsky, Peter Rounds Mitchell, and John Schoeffel (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

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  •  
    E. Ard Carmen, San Diego 07-16-14
    E. Ard Carmen, San Diego 07-16-14 Member Since 2015

    man, what

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    "Excellent Standalone or as a Supplement"
    Would you listen to Understanding Power again? Why?

    Yes.Noam Chomsky's writings and lectures are filled with an overwhelming number of facts, numbers, and statements. So many, in fact, most of it will never reach your long term memory after just a listen or two. I read the hard copy first. While I don't mind plucking through the pages for a part I want to revisit, this was a much less daunting review that allowed for a cover-to-cover experience.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    Every single aside and footnote could be traced to a real world reality. If he said a corporation wrote a letter asking for something from the government, even if the request seems insane, that letter exists and is available to the public. That is not to say there isn't opinion in here, there is very strong opinion. The facts are immaculate, however.


    Which character – as performed by Robin Bloodworth – was your favorite?

    Robin Bloodworth performed Chomsky's work throughout. One thing that immediately jumped out to me, having seen or heard some of the lectures, was the difference between inflection and emphasis. I only mention this because I am aware that most who would call themselves Chomsky fans have heard a lot of audio and seen many lectures. I found that Bloodworth's performance evened out Chomsky' and provided consistency to a collection written over such a long period (at 85, he sounds healthy, but obviously different than in his youth) and including diverse formats.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    "And the end result is in fact quite similar: what are called opinions "on the left" and "on the right" in the media represent only a limited spectrum of debate which reflects the range of needs of private power-but there's essentially nothing beyond those "acceptable" positions."


    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tobinardo 05-20-15
    Tobinardo 05-20-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Staggering insight."

    A most amazing compilation of facts surrounding the understanding of world power and their structures by one of greatest minds of our time! I just hope he is wrong in his conclusions.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scott M Riccardelli 03-31-15 Member Since 2013
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    "The bleak reality of the US"

    Everyone needs to listen to Chomsky. Whether you're a corporate shill or a concerned citizen, this puts the bleak cultural wasteland of America into focus and exposes the nastiness and the modern form of slavery that corporations are imposing on everyone.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mohamed Baioumy USA 03-12-15
    Mohamed Baioumy USA 03-12-15 Member Since 2007

    Truth Seeker

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    "Everyone needs to read this book. "

    To understand how the current leaders lie to you. People need to organize and free back our country.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pedro A. Ortiz Bayamon, Puerto Rico 08-12-15
    Pedro A. Ortiz Bayamon, Puerto Rico 08-12-15 Member Since 2010

    comatoso

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    "Current times demand you get this into your head."

    I'm not what you would consider a member of the left, actually I'm a capitalist entrepreneur. But the ideas and concepts in this book are universal, fundamental and are necesary if you wish to understand how the modern world works and the true forces tha shape our lives.ostl6, if you want to make a change for thr better it's necesary to understand what change looks like in the long timeframes we humans need to make real lasting change.

    I don't agree with some of the ideas he presents but they are microscopic and of little importance in comparison to the scope of the information in this book, but that's just an opinion.

    The best thing is to read this now, almost 30 years later. Chomsky got most of it right as you will learn if you listen to this completely. he basically predicts our current state.

    By the way, I have had this book for 10 years in print and never had made the time to read. so yeah, thanks Audible.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John 07-14-15
    John 07-14-15
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    "excellent. must hear."

    if you want to understand what's going on in the world today, and why, but this book...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peggy Sue Richards 06-30-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Preaching to the choir in a powerful way"

    So what are you doing about (it - whatever)?? Noam has always pushed us to be our best selves - to try to right wrongs and find alternatives to violence in our own lives and those of people everywhere. He is reminding us of what is in our hearts - we know when something is unsustainable (our shortsighted economic greed and resultant violence) and we know what to do about it (seek out and join with like-minded people to speak out, to support the good and to oppose and expose the oppression by the corporate oligarchy. We are powerful together, but not in isolation. I say listen, learn, love ourselves and others and don't let our brothers and sisters suffer - just do it. Together we are powerful!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael McGee 06-30-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Important Challenge to Popular Thought"

    One of the few books that has the capacity to be life changing. Chomsky presents a view of the world that is rarely discussed, and as he explains, for good reason. Not a casual listen but Chomsky is not meant to be light reading.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim United States 05-13-15
    Jim United States 05-13-15 Member Since 2013

    History, Sci-Fi, Fantasy nerd from St. Louis.

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    "Great Material - Dry Performance"

    Mr. Bloodworth's reading is technically precise and easy to understand, it's as dry as toast roasted in the summer sun on the flats of the Atacama Desert.

    The source material more than make up for this.

    Recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scott 03-19-15
    Scott 03-19-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Chomsky"

    Fantastic book. Well organized and narrated. Essential for all, especially anarchists. Chomsky is like a political and economic encyclopedia. Don't make the mistake of idolizing him, think for yourself and go organize!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • nabil chouba
    Swindon
    9/2/15
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    "Great book about Power"
    If you could sum up Understanding Power in three words, what would they be?

    I will never see the world in the same way after reading this book


    Any additional comments?

    I will never see the world in the same way after reading this depressing book about power. Noam is probably focusing on the dark side but all the annoying facts presented are real.
    we all agree that the current system is unfair, I think future will be better with technology, an Anarchist-Chomsky solution will be possible in 20-30 years from now.
    (A Must Read Book)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    8/13/15
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    "A book made for audible"

    This is a great book. It is tough going in places, so make use of the bookmarks and go back until you understand. It's long but it's worth it. The detail and examples are well thought out and relevant to today.

    If you find yourself questioning information you read on social media, watch on the TV or read in the newspaper, this book is for you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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