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The Post American World

The Post American World

后美国世界

作    者
Zakaria, Fareed;  
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所属分类
Political Science > International Relations
Political Science > International Relations > General
出版社
W W Norton & Co Inc
ISBN-13
9780393334807
ISBN-10
0393334805
出版日期
2009-05
页数
292
单位
尺寸
21.59 * 2.54 * 13.97
装帧
Paperback
版本

Product Description

“Zakaria . . . may have more intellectual range and insights than any other public thinker in the West.” —Boston Sunday Globe

“This is not a book about the decline of America, but rather about the rise of everyone else.” So begins Fareed Zakaria’s blockbusting bestseller on the United States in the twenty-first century. How can Americans understand this rapidly changing international climate, and how might the nation continue to thrive in a truly global era? Zakaria answers these questions with his customary lucidity, insight, and imagination.

About the Author

Fareed Zakaria is the editor-at-large of Time and the Emmy-nominated host of CNN's Fareed Zakaria GPS. His books include the bestsellers The Post-American World and The Future of Freedom. He lives in New York City.

Amazon.com Review

Book Description
"This is not a book about the decline of America, but rather about the rise of everyone else." So begins Fareed Zakaria's important new work on the era we are now entering. Following on the success of his best-selling The Future of Freedom, Zakaria describes with equal prescience a world in which the United States will no longer dominate the global economy, orchestrate geopolitics, or overwhelm cultures. He sees the "rise of the rest"—the growth of countries like China, India, Brazil, Russia, and many others—as the great story of our time, and one that will reshape the world. The tallest buildings, biggest dams, largest-selling movies, and most advanced cell phones are all being built outside the United States. This economic growth is producing political confidence, national pride, and potentially international problems. How should the United States understand and thrive in this rapidly changing international climate? What does it mean to live in a truly global era? Zakaria answers these questions with his customary lucidity, insight, and imagination.


Thomas Friedman and Fareed Zakaria: Author One-to-One

Fareed Zakaria: Your book is about two things, the climate crisis and also about an American crisis. Why do you link the two?  Fareed Zakaria

Thomas Friedman: You're absolutely right--it is about two things. The book says, America has a problem and the world has a problem. The world's problem is that it's getting hot, flat and crowded and that convergence--that perfect storm--is driving a lot of negative trends. America's problem is that we've lost our way--we've lost our groove as a country. And the basic argument of the book is that we can solve our problem by taking the lead in solving the world's problem.

Zakaria: Explain what you mean by "hot, flat and crowded."

Friedman: There is a convergence of basically three large forces: one is global warming, which has been going on at a very slow pace since the industrial revolution; the second--what I call the flattening of the world--is a metaphor for the rise of middle-class citizens, from China to India to Brazil to Russia to Eastern Europe, who are beginning to consume like Americans. That's a blessing in so many ways--it's a blessing for global stability and for global growth. But it has enormous resource complications, if all these people--whom you've written about in your book, The Post American World--begin to consume like Americans. And lastly, global population growth simply refers to the steady growth of population in general, but at the same time the growth of more and more people able to live this middle-class lifestyle. Between now and 2020, the world's going to add another billion people. And their resource demands--at every level--are going to be enormous. I tell the story in the book how, if we give each one of the next billion people on the planet just one sixty-watt incandescent light bulb, what it will mean: the answer is that it will require about 20 new 500-megawatt coal-burning power plants. That's so they can each turn on just one light bulb!

Zakaria: In my book I talk about the "rise of the rest" and about the reality of how this rise of new powerful economic nations is completely changing the way the world works. Most everyone's efforts have been devoted to Kyoto-like solutions, with the idea of getting western countries to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions. But I grew to realize that the West was a sideshow. India and China will build hundreds of coal-fire power plants in the next ten years and the combined carbon dioxide emissions of those new plants alone are five times larger than the savings mandated by the Kyoto accords. What do you do with the Indias and Chinas of the world?

Thomas FriedmanFriedman: I think there are two approaches. There has to be more understanding of the basic unfairness they feel. They feel like we sat down, had the hors d'oeuvres, ate the entrée, pretty much finished off the dessert, invited them for tea and coffee and then said, "Let's split the bill." So I understand the big sense of unfairness--they feel that now that they have a chance to grow and reach with large numbers a whole new standard of living, we're basically telling them, "Your growth, and all the emissions it would add, is threatening the world's climate." At the same time, what I say to them--what I said to young Chinese most recently when I was just in China is this: Every time I come to China, young Chinese say to me, "Mr. Friedman, your country grew dirty for 150 years. Now it's our turn." And I say to them, "Yes, you're absolutely right, it's your turn. Grow as dirty as you want. Take your time. Because I think we probably just need about five years to invent all the new clean power technologies you're going to need as you choke to death, and we're going to come and sell them to you. And we're going to clean your clock in the next great global industry. So please, take your time. If you want to give us a five-year lead in the next great global industry, I will take five. If you want to give us ten, that would be even better. In other words, I know this is unfair, but I am here to tell you that in a world that's hot, flat and crowded, ET--energy technology--is going to be as big an industry as IT--information technology. Maybe even bigger. And who claims that industry--whose country and whose companies dominate that industry--I think is going to enjoy more national security, more economic security, more economic growth, a healthier population, and greater global respect, for that matter, as well. So you can sit back and say, it's not fair that we have to compete in this new industry, that we should get to grow dirty for a while, or you can do what you did in telecommunications, and that is try to leap-frog us. And that's really what I'm saying to them: this is a great economic opportunity. The game is still open. I want my country to win it--I'm not sure it will.

Zakaria: I'm struck by the point you make about energy technology. In my book I'm pretty optimistic about the United States. But the one area where I'm worried is actually ET. We do fantastically in biotech, we're doing fantastically in nanotechnology. But none of these new technologies have the kind of system-wide effect that information technology did. Energy does. If you want to find the next technological revolution you need to find an industry that transforms everything you do. Biotechnology affects one critical aspect of your day-to-day life, health, but not all of it. But energy--the consumption of energy--affects every human activity in the modern world. Now, my fear is that, of all the industries in the future, that's the one where we're not ahead of the pack. Are we going to run second in this race?

Friedman: Well, I want to ask you that, Fareed. Why do you think we haven't led this industry, which itself has huge technological implications? We have all the secret sauce, all the technological prowess, to lead this industry. Why do you think this is the one area--and it's enormous, it's actually going to dwarf all the others--where we haven't been at the real cutting edge?

Continue reading the Q&A between Thomas Friedman and Fareed Zakaria


--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

Compelling. (Thomas Friedman - New York Times )

A far-reaching analysis. (Slate )

This is a relentlessly intelligent book that eschews simple-minded projections from crisis to collapse. (Joseph Joffe - New York Times Book Review )

A provocative and often shrewd take that opens a big picture window on the closing of the first American century and the advent of a new world. (Michiko Kakutani - New York Times )

Fareed Zakaria is one of the most thoughtful foreign policy analysts of our day and his new book . . . is a must read for anyone interested in globalization—or the Presidential election. (Bruce Nussbaum - BusinessWeek )

From AudioFile

Hey, America, we're not listening to you! That's what the rest of the world is on the verge of telling us, according to Fareed Zakaria's thought-provoking and well-researched study of economic evolution. On the one hand, Zakaria explains that the world is actually a much more peaceful, prosperous place than we are led to believe. On the other hand, while the U.S. may not be slipping, the rest of the world���notably China and India���are quickly gaining on us (and leaving a sizable carbon footprint). NEWSWEEK editor Zakaria delivers a smooth, convincing narration. The hint of a Mumbai accent in his speech adds a slight irony to his analysis. R.W.S. © AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. When a book proclaims that it is not about the decline of America but the rise of everyone else, readers might expect another diatribe about our dismal post-9/11 world. They are in for a pleasant surprise as Newsweek editor and popular pundit Zakaria (The Future of Freedom) delivers a stimulating, largely optimistic forecast of where the 21st century is heading. We are living in a peaceful era, he maintains; world violence peaked around 1990 and has plummeted to a record low. Burgeoning prosperity has spread to the developing world, raising standards of living in Brazil, India, China and Indonesia. Twenty years ago China discarded Soviet economics but not its politics, leading to a wildly effective, top-down, scorched-earth boom. Its political antithesis, India, also prospers while remaining a chaotic, inefficient democracy, as Indian elected officials are (generally) loathe to use the brutally efficient tactics that are the staple of Chinese governance. Paradoxically, India's greatest asset is its relative stability in the region; its officials take an unruly population for granted, while dissent produces paranoia in Chinese leaders. Zakaria predicts that despite its record of recent blunders at home and abroad, America will stay strong, buoyed by a stellar educational system and the influx of young immigrants, who give the U.S. a more youthful demographic than Europe and much of Asia whose workers support an increasing population of unproductive elderly. A lucid, thought-provoking appraisal of world affairs, this book will engage readers on both sides of the political spectrum. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

It’s not that the U.S. has fallen behind, argues Newsweek editor Zakaria; it’s that the rest of the world is catching up. The globalized economy of the twenty-first century is in many ways an American-style capitalist system, but countries formerly in thrall to the world’s superpowers are increasingly able to keep up with, and in some cases beat, the U.S. at its own free-market game. Though, from a military and political standpoint, it remains a unipolar world, the actual ability of the U.S. to leverage its sole superpower status for economic gain is fading as it proves (somewhat ironically) less able than other nations to adapt its economic policies to the emergent facts of globalization. The “rise of the rest” and resultant economic vibrancy is a generally positive development for global peace and prosperity, claims Zakaria, resisting the apoplectic or apocalyptic tenor of some other commentators. And America can be optimistic too, provided that it can get over its fear, purge itself of toxic politics and nostalgic ideologies, and remind itself of its core virtues. --Brendan Driscoll --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From The Washington Post

After the Iraq war, Fareed Zakaria argued in his Newsweek column that the world's new organizing principle was pro- or anti-Americanism. But as the Iraq muddle drags on and China rises, the larger story of the post-Cold War era has come into sharp relief: We are not the center of the universe. It matters less that particular countries are pro- or anti-American than that the world is increasingly non-American. We need to get over ourselves.

Zakaria's The Post-American World is about the "rise of the rest," a catchy phrase from one of the most widely cited writers on foreign affairs. His prism is correct: We should focus more on the "rest," even if America is still the premier superpower. But within this broad approach, Zakaria leaves policy-makers to figure out how to rank challenges and restore U.S. legitimacy.

Zakaria zooms in on Asia, especially India and China, which he uses as proxies for "the rest." The first third of the book sets out his thesis -- "For the first time ever, we are witnessing genuinely global growth" -- and the next third describes how China's economy has doubled every eight years and how India may have the world's third largest economy by 2040.

This year has brought a flood of books on Asia's rise, including Bill Emmott's Rivals and Kishore Mahbubani's The New Asian Hemisphere. For the most part, they embody the "world is flat" thesis -- lots of economic statistics, little geography. But geopolitics is about more than growth rates. It matters that China borders a dozen more countries than India does, isn't hemmed in by a vast ocean and the world's tallest mountains, has a loyal diaspora twice the size of India's and enjoys a head start in Asian and African marketplaces. Zakaria's chapters on China and India, though of equal length, should not connote equivalency, and all "the rest" cannot be happily lumped together. Does China's example tell us what has gone wrong in Venezuela and Pakistan, and could go wrong in Egypt and Indonesia?

Ironically, the final third of The Post-American World, which focuses on us rather than on "the rest," is the strongest. Zakaria argues that America's world-beating economic vibrancy co-exists with a dysfunctional political system. "A 'can-do' country is now saddled with a 'do-nothing' political process, designed for partisan battle rather than problem solving," he writes. That makes it hard to devise a grand strategy, and Zakaria offers just a few "simple guidelines" on the need to set priorities, build global rules and be flexible. But in this non-American world, it may be too late to restore U.S. leadership. "The rest" is moving on.


Copyright 2008, The Washington Post. All Rights Reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.