Customer Reviews


5 Reviews
5 star:
 (3)
4 star:
 (2)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 
Most Helpful First | Newest First

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the protest movement is broader than you realise, 18 April 2008
By 
Jeremy Williams (Luton) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Babylon and Beyond: The Economics of Anti-Capitalist, Anti-Globalist and Radical Green Movements (Paperback)
This is a vital book for those who, like me, recognise that there is much to stand against in our current consumer culture, but who find themselves caught between light-bulb replacing platitudes on one side, and angry radicalism on the other. It turns out that the protest movement is broader and more diverse than I realised, and more thought-out and intentional than the news footage would imply.

Anyone with a social conscience and a eye on the newspapers knows that the consumer society is not all it seems, that there is a catalogue of atrocities behind the shiny veneer. We know that the gap between the rich and the poor is widening, that trade is unfair, that our consumption patterns are unsustainable, and that globalisation has not delivered its much lauded benefits evenly. The problem is, what do you do about it? How else could it work? And even if we can imagine an alternative, where do you start dismantling a whole world order?

Babylon and Beyond explores the many different answers to those questions. For some, the answer lies in reform of our financial institutions, making sure globalisation continues, but more fairly, at a workable pace. Others believe that the system is beyond repair, and we need communism instead, or to revert to peasant farming and self-sufficiency. Some want to focus on corporations, others on monetary reform. There are an awful lot of ideas and potential solutions out there, some good, practical and possible, others not so useful.

Derek Wall is a historian and an economist, and a leading member of the UK Green Party, which makes him the perfect guide through this maze of ideas. Wall knows which voices are the ones worth listening too, whether he agrees with them or not. So George Soros and Joseph Stiglitz get a whole chapter between them, as the leading voices for change within the capitalist system, a kind of `more but better' globalisation that Wall suggests `illustrates the truth that a bridge that only stands on one side of the river is no bridge at all'. David Korten and Naomi Klein, with their focus on corporations and brands, are another chapter. Localism, marxism and anarchism are also explored.

For me personally, the chapter on ecosocialism resonated the most, a marriage between green politics and a marxist understanding of capitalism. The view that capitalism is responsible for the current ecological crisis is self-evident to me, so I sympathise with the ecosocialist cause. I also value the insight that there are two kinds of environmentalism - north and south. In the north, environmentalism is a choice, an optional concern. In the south, it is a matter of life and death.

The future will undoubtedly pick and choose from many of the different philosophies here, but what I appreciate most is that Wall is confident that these movements are not wasting their time. Although some are not going far enough, and some are barking up the wrong tree, Wall sees hope in all sorts of places, like the slow movement, open source software, allotments. In fact underpinning the book is the belief that `economics can be bent towards serving the needs of humanity and nature rather than its own violent abstract growth', and that's an important message.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Babylon and Beyond, 23 Nov. 2005
By 
Sarah Farrow (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Babylon and Beyond: The Economics of Anti-Capitalist, Anti-Globalist and Radical Green Movements (Paperback)
This is a very enjoyable read full of humour and literary references which explains what anti-capitalists believe and looks at practical alternatives to our present economic system. Wall shows that it is pretty much impossible for capitalism to continue without the complete wrecking of the planet unlike Jonathon Porritt who seems to have given up most of his radical green ideas. Babylon and Beyond shows how a community based grassroots economics can be based on social sharing. Here we find Marx for beginners plus all the other anti-capitalists including billionaire George Soros to radical greens. If you care about the planet and justice and are looking for a readable guide including what opponents of the present economic set are saying, I urge you to read this book, nice pictures as well including a great one of MEP Caroline Lucas
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Babylon and Beyond, 17 Jan. 2006
This review is from: Babylon and Beyond: The Economics of Anti-Capitalist, Anti-Globalist and Radical Green Movements (Paperback)
Derek Wall has written this book as a guide to the economics of anti-capitalism. Unlike most books on caitalism and anti-capitalism where you need an honours degree in economics or politics to understand the fundamental issues. Derek has brought together lots of different ideas and has evolved an understandable guide to the economics of anti-capitalismwhich the man in the street would understand ( if he were interested ) Derek's history of capitalism is both very funny and very enlightening. He covers all aspects of the capitalist and anti-capitalist thoughts and philosophies from ( Marxism Derek himself being a Zen-Marxist )to Anachism (which I tend tend to favour ) Derek gives lots of insights into the alternatives as propounded by lots of famous economic and capilasist reformers, green reformers and eco-socialists
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Great Primer on trends in the anti-globalisation 'movement', 4 Oct. 2007
By 
Peter Shield "editor-naturalchoices.co.uk" (Languedoc- France) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Babylon and Beyond: The Economics of Anti-Capitalist, Anti-Globalist and Radical Green Movements (Paperback)
Derek Wall's Babylon and Beyond. is a great romp through the various elements make up the anti-globalisation 'movement'- starting with the Keynesian type reformers like Soros and ending up with the eco-socialism, passing by autonomists, eco-feminism and of course anarchists. In effect it is an enquiry into the various political, economic and philosophical elements that make up modern anti-capitalism- with Derek taking a bit from most of them to pull together a sort of coherent eco-socialist position- which takes the form of a re-reading of Marx/Engels, a good pull on the pint of anarchism, with the open source movement pulled in for a 21st century hot pepper spice.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Babylon and Beyond, 24 Mar. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Babylon and Beyond: The Economics of Anti-Capitalist, Anti-Globalist and Radical Green Movements (Paperback)
I purchased this book a few months ago and I must say, it has been very enlightening. For anyone thats interested in Radical Economics, or alternative forms of economic thought, please purchase. You wont be dissapointed.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Only search this product's reviews