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Publisher's Summary

This book offers a stimulating introduction to globalization and its varying impacts across, between, and within societies. It is a highly listenable text that contributes to a better understanding of the crucial aspects and dimensions of the developments and transformations that go by the name of globalization.
In a hurry? Listen to more Very Short Introductions.
©2009 Oxford University Press; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

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  • Overall

Very Short Introductions is the best collection!!

This truly is a dazzling brief introduction to a subject that could not be covered even by a very long book. As Steger points out, the fact of globalization is the predominant issue of our time. Far too man, as he points out, tend to treat the subject in monolithic or simplistic fashion, focusing on merely one aspect of globalization, and assuming that that aspect defines all of globalization. Anyone familiar with Thomas Friedman's THE LEXUS AND THE OLIVE TREE (who is frequently described as a "hyper globalizer") will recognize one such very narrow approach. Despite his brief space, Steger wants to do justice to the complexity of the subject. For the past decade, most writers on globalization have focused on economic globalization, but Steger emphasizes that the process has political, economic, religious, cultural, environmental, and ideological conditions.

Many people who tackle the question of globalization seem to want to know, "Is this a good or bad thing?" Steger is anxious to emphasize that this does not admit of an easy answer. Clearly, the massive increase of economic inequality--which occurs both on international and national levels, e.g., wealth has more and more been concentrated in the industrial countries of the northern hemisphere, and within those countries, more and more in the hands of a small economic corporate and investing elite--is not a good thing, but that is not the only aspect of globalization. Steger seems to suggest that there are both significant advantages and some lamentable dangers in globalization.

The one aspect of globalization concerning which Steger is clearly and rightfully concerned is the promotion of globalization in the ideological terms of the Neoliberal project of promoting free markets over all other concerns. The term "Neoliberal" might throw some people, since the leading Neoliberal of recent decades would include Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, and most members of the George W. Bush administration (though also many

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Grant
  • Louisville, KY USA
  • 09-10-15

Book of biases masquerading as facts

Do you like being an audience for an angry socialist? Then don't waste your time listening to this book. If it's for a class, this version isn't the latest anyway. There are plenty of new rants in the 2013 book version that aren't in the 2009 audio.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Old version and terrible chapter layout

I was required to read this book for a economics class and decided to get the audio book as I read along. Turns out, this is the old edition. The new one was published in 2013. Also when you want to skip ahead to a chapter, you have to skim through the recordings to find it yourself. You would think they could split it up for you but they don't. The content is okay, outdated, but okay. Its very hard to understand. They use incredibly difficult words to describe simple ideas for the sake of proving credibility but this book was supposed to be an introduction to globalization. Second Paragraph begins with, "Unfortunately, however, early bestsellers on the subject-for example,..." Why write something with such confusing grammar? 3/10

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Major points cut out!

Would you try another book from Manfred Steger and/or Elisabeth Rodgers?

The book itself is great ! I would definitely recommend reading it

Any additional comments?

I usually buy the audio book to go along with the reading because hearing the words and reading them at the same time give me a better understanding of the book. When I tried to do that with this book I had some problems because there were massive chunks of the book missing from the narration.

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  • Thomas
  • New York, NY, United States
  • 07-05-14

A Good Introduction with a Point of View

The book is well written and well read and fulfills its mission of giving an introduction to the multifaceted reality of globalization. The author is a university professor who analyzes globalization from the vantage point of understanding a developing and increasingly complex academic subject.

Although I largely agree with the author's point of view on many issues, I was disappointed that he seemed unaware how ideological his own presentation was and how he marches in step with a kind of academic-left orthodoxy that has long been in vogue in his professional context. He has definite bogeys, especially "neoliberalism" (which is usually more a term of abuse than of analysis), the idea of markets, and almost any manifestation of American politics or popular culture -- with some notable exceptions: Ralph Nader and a number of American scholars. It is striking how his descriptions of some points of view are loaded with words of scorn and condescension, while views of which he approves are described in words that glow with justice and human flourishing. All the while, seeming to give a balanced and straightforward presentation of unfolding facts.

In spite of these weaknesses, however, the book knowledgeably covers a wide range and gives a very helpful overview of the subject.