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Falling off the edge

Falling off the edge         
Alex Perry, MacMillan                                                                                                                                            FallingoffEdge

Based on a straightforward premise that globalization is the main cause of much of the world’s conflicts and strife due to inequality, poverty and resentment it brings about, the writer tries to prove this through his experience reporting in various hotspots worldwide.
Described as a reporter’s book, Perry, a seasoned foreign correspondent who is Time magazine’s Africa bureau chief, presents his experiences in places ranging from Shengzhen, China to Afghanistan to Darfur. Perry describes disparate problems such as poverty, piracy, Marxist revolution and conflicts over resources, linking them with his assertion that globalization is the main cause.

There is a chapter on the ‘Asian miracle,’ where Perry savages the popular notion that China and India are close to being two major world powers. Not with so much significant internal problems, so let’s not gush too much, he says and rightly so.

The writing is smooth, fast-paced, exciting and takes readers from one troublespot to another around the world.
What makes this book an exciting read also unfortunately, causes its flaws.
Writing on different problems makes for very interesting reading but Perry doesn’t get into depth on any of them. Facts and statistics are provided but deeper analysis and background would have been better.
The fact that globalization is neatly presented in as a main cause of all these problems oversimplifies them and ignores the different circumstances present.

Perry never misses any opportunity to expound that globalization is to blame for much of the world’s problems and unfortunately he doesn’t really make any suggestions for solutions or alternatives. At the end of it, readers come away knowing somewhat more about serious conflicts and issues going on worldwide, but nothing too deep and certainly not why globalization is the main factor, as alleged repeatedly.

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