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The Global Me

a book review

product linkThe Global Me
authorG. Pascal Zachary
date reviewed2001.04.23
genreSocial Science
isbn1891620614

The Global Me is a work of sociology. It looks into the ramifications of the growing population on the Earth who fit no 'race'. The book's premise is that these new trans-national, trans-racial figures are the key to tomorrow's succesful nations, for they blend 'roots' and 'wings'. Roots are the background, culture, teachings, etc that they've taken from their parents and/or childhood, and are supposedly the result on national institutions. Wings are the tendancy to move wherever they're driven by economics or less material concerns.

It's an interesting idea, but the author sometimes has difficulty moralizing and exeplifying the noble hybrid. He discusses trends as recent as Ireland's 1999/2000 boom, and relates the tales of dozens of people. All the while, though, there's a sense that mobility and mixing are somehow good in themselves, rather than the inevitable result of economic pressures, individuals' interests, etc. The author seems to have fixed on the idea that being a hybrid of nations lends some kind of moral superiority. I am currently re-reading this book to ensure that my first take was correct, for just this reason.

The author correctly states that the entire concept of nationality is new (most nations on Earth are modern constructs, such as Italy, Germany, or Turkey, or the remnants of colonial pasts, such as the nations of the new world, Africa, and even parts of Asia). But he doesn't convey the fact that people have been migrating forever, and that we've been mixing with other groups all through our history. It seemed a little unnerving to find a cheerleading aspect to a work supposedly detailing social aspects of migration.

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