Western readers with a strong devotion to individual liberties may be turned off, but Khanna is thorough and clear, offering...

THE FUTURE IS ASIAN

An India-born, Western-educated strategic adviser and author offers a comprehensive worldview from an Asian perspective.

Now residing in Singapore—“the unofficial capital of Asia, a melting pot that embodies Asia’s potential to make the most of the Europeanization and Americanization of the past and, most importantly, the Asianization of today and tomorrow”—Khanna (Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization, 2016, etc.) enlists his considerable global experience and education to elegantly lay out the vast range and enormous potential of what he calls the Asian “system” of moving beyond geography and embracing “alliances, institutions, infrastructure, trade, investment, culture and other patterns.” As such, Asia encompasses China, Japan, South Korea, and Vietnam as well as the Gulf states (“West Asia”) and India, Russia, Iran, and, strategically, Australia. Seeing the world from an Asian point of view first entails jettisoning accumulated stereotypes—e.g., that Asia needs the U.S. more than we need Asia. This is not true, and Asian nations have become increasingly wary of Washington’s “unreliable promises.” Khanna begins with a dazzling distillation of the history of the world from an Asian perspective, emphasizing how the main swath of early civilization was situated in Asia and how briefly (though intensively) the Western powers inserted themselves into the picture. The author underscores that “Asia’s linkages have been continually propelled through commerce, conflict, and culture.” Following the historical narrative, Khanna moves into “Asia-nomics,” or how each country is developing its particular economic strength. For example, after the first wave of modern Asian growth in postwar Japan and South Korea, followed by China, the current wave is now propelled by Southeast Asia (India, Thailand, Vietnam, and Indonesia). Then, the author addresses the phenomenal Asian diaspora in America and in Europe; China’s forays into Africa; and how liberal democracy probably does not suit Asian countries as much as the technocratic model ("good despotism") of Lee Kuan Yew’s Singapore.

Western readers with a strong devotion to individual liberties may be turned off, but Khanna is thorough and clear, offering abundant food for thought.

Pub Date: Feb. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-9626-3

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Dec. 9, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

Did you like this book?

This moving, potent testament might have been titled “Black Lives Matter.” Or: “An American Tragedy.”

Reader Votes

  • Readers Vote
  • 18

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • Kirkus Reviews'
    Best Books Of 2015

  • Kirkus Prize
  • Kirkus Prize
    winner

  • New York Times Bestseller

  • IndieBound Bestseller

  • National Book Award Winner

  • Pulitzer Prize Finalist

BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME

NOTES ON THE FIRST 150 YEARS IN AMERICA

The powerful story of a father’s past and a son’s future.

Atlantic senior writer Coates (The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood, 2008) offers this eloquent memoir as a letter to his teenage son, bearing witness to his own experiences and conveying passionate hopes for his son’s life. “I am wounded,” he writes. “I am marked by old codes, which shielded me in one world and then chained me in the next.” Coates grew up in the tough neighborhood of West Baltimore, beaten into obedience by his father. “I was a capable boy, intelligent and well-liked,” he remembers, “but powerfully afraid.” His life changed dramatically at Howard University, where his father taught and from which several siblings graduated. Howard, he writes, “had always been one of the most critical gathering posts for black people.” He calls it The Mecca, and its faculty and his fellow students expanded his horizons, helping him to understand “that the black world was its own thing, more than a photo-negative of the people who believe they are white.” Coates refers repeatedly to whites’ insistence on their exclusive racial identity; he realizes now “that nothing so essentialist as race” divides people, but rather “the actual injury done by people intent on naming us, intent on believing that what they have named matters more than anything we could ever actually do.” After he married, the author’s world widened again in New York, and later in Paris, where he finally felt extricated from white America’s exploitative, consumerist dreams. He came to understand that “race” does not fully explain “the breach between the world and me,” yet race exerts a crucial force, and young blacks like his son are vulnerable and endangered by “majoritarian bandits.” Coates desperately wants his son to be able to live “apart from fear—even apart from me.”

This moving, potent testament might have been titled “Black Lives Matter.” Or: “An American Tragedy.”

Pub Date: July 8, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-8129-9354-7

Page Count: 176

Publisher: Spiegel & Grau

Review Posted Online: May 6, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2015

Did you like this book?

more