In his preface, veteran British journalist Fox expresses distaste for ``that otiose and overrated literary form, the finely written travelogue''—and certainly this earnest work evokes few of the sensate pleasures and chance discoveries that enliven that genre. Instead, it's a rather dry and often disturbing chronicle, drawn from journeys taken between 1984 and 1987, of the historical development, present turmoil, and likely future upheavals locked within each of the restless nations bordering the Mediterranean. ``The Mediterranean is an untidy place with an untidy past,'' Fox says. Historically divided into small, often warring independent tribes that were forced into political nation-states only relatively recently, the people of the Middle East, Yugoslavia, and Italy now appear increasingly determined to return to some version of their previous tribal structure. Fox cites as explanation for this collapse of confidence in the political status quo the increasing social and psychological strain of an exploding and increasingly young population in the southern Mediterranean countries (half the Palestinian population of the West Bank and Gaza was under age 16 by 1990); an environmentally catastrophic increase in tourism (projected to rise from eighty million to two- hundred million annually by 2025) and in pollution from cargo ships and untreated human sewage; and current governments' demonstrated ineffectiveness in combating Mafia-style organized crime. Fox's conclusion—that the southern Mediterranean's ancient and often fanatical criminal organizations, religious cults, and other tribal units (most now armed with 20th-century weapons) are likely to spread as southern populations grow while the more prosperous northern populations shrink and get old—is disquieting, if hardly surprising. Bitter medicine: good for the reader, but not easy going down.

Pub Date: May 28, 1993

ISBN: 0-394-57452-4

Page Count: 560

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1993

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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