Chris Hedges defies easy categories: he's part journalist, part poet, part zen master -- always with his finger pointing toward the (often very painful) truth. I consider him to be among the very best living writers.
Hedges' work is a downer. Sometimes I read his columns and his books, and I am filled with paralyzing fright and sadness. He knows how bad the world is; he can articulate the horrors of war, greed, capitalism, corporate power, etc. ad nauseum in a way that is visceral and devastating. I know of no other writer who speaks the truth in such a dense, but accessible and compassionate way.
I am grateful to Chris Hedges. His books and columns have transformed me -- changed both my personal habits and outlook. The World As It Is is filled with wisdom, sanity and unsettling truth -- a truth we are wise to not only embrace but act upon before the world descends into a place from which there is no escape.
My description might sound bleak (ahhhh, but: the world is bleak, if we choose to see 'the world as it is'), but Chris Hedges doesn't blather on about hopelessness and despair; he states the truth as if we might choose a different way of life -- one that respects our fellow citizens and the planet we live on. Hedges knows the world we live in is filled with enormous pain and suffering, and also that there's another way. His sobering work has the power to nudge us in the right direction.
I cannot recommend this book highly enough.