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Politics

The Optician of Lampedusa

The Optician of Lampedusa

Emma-Jane Kirby

$19.99
From an award-winning BBC journalist, this moving book turns the testimony of an accidental hero into a timeless story about the awakening of human courage and conscience. 'I can hardly begin to describe to you what I saw as our boat approached the source of that terrible noise. I hardly want to. You won't understand because you weren't there. You can't understand. You see, I thought I'd heard seagulls screeching. Seagulls fighting over a lucky catch. Birds. Just birds.' Emma-Jane Kirby has reported extensively on the reality of mass migration today. In The Optician of Lampedusa she brings to life the moving testimony of an ordinary man whose late summer boat trip off a Sicilian island unexpectedly turns into a tragic rescue mission.
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Things That Can and Cannot be Said

Things That Can and Cannot be Said

Arundhati Roy ,  John Cusack

$12.99
An account of the extraordinary meeting between four brilliant political activists: Booker Prize winner Arundhati Roy, NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden, Pentagon Papers insider Daniel Ellsberg and acclaimed actor John Cusack 'What sort of love is this love that we have for countries? What sort of country is it that will ever live up to our dreams? What sort of dreams were these that have been broken?' In 2014, four people met in secret in a hotel room in Moscow. Each was a leading global advocate for government transparency and accountability: they had come together to talk. Over the course of two days, Arundhati Roy, Edward Snowden, John Cusack and Daniel Ellsburg shared ideas and beliefs - about the Vietnam War and the Pentagon Papers, the NSA and the ongoing crises in the Middle East, the American government and the nature of activism. Co-authored by Roy and Cusack, and interleaving verbatim conversations with narrated recollections, this Penguin Special captures an historic moment. Interrogating the geopolitical forces that shape our world, it is both political and personal, activist and humanist - irreverent, funny and absolutely urgent. In Things That Can and Cannot Be Said, Arundhati Roy and John Cusack issue a powerful rallying cry, a call to resistance against America's ongoing, malign hegemony.
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What is a Refugee?

What is a Refugee?

William Maley

$29.99
In Australia, growing alarm about the arrival of asylum-seekers set in around the time of the Tampa affair in 2001, and has led to the country imposing increasingly draconian anti-refugee policies. In Europe, the recent arrival of over a million refugees and asylum-seekers has provoked a sense of panic across that continent and beyond. 

William Maley's illuminating introduction offers a guide to the complex idea of 'the refugee' and sets the current crisis within the wider history of human exile, injecting much-needed objectivity and nuance into the debate.  Arguing that Western states are now reaping the consequences of policies aimed at blocking safe and 'legal' access to asylum, What is a Refugee? shows why many proposed solutions to the refugee 'problem' will exacerbate tension and risk fuelling the growth of extremism among people who have been denied all hope. 

This lucid book also tells of the families and individuals who have sought refuge, highlighting the suffering, separation and dislocation on their perilous journeys to safety. Only through such stories can we properly begin to understand what it is to be a refugee.
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Post-Western World: How Emerging Powers are Remaking Global Order

Post-Western World: How Emerging Powers are Remaking Global Order

Oliver Stuenkel

$35.95
With the United States superpower status rivalled by a rising China and emerging powers like India and Brazil playing a growing role in international affairs, the global balance of power is shifting. But what does this mean for the future of the international order? Will China dominate the 21st Century? Will the so-called BRICS prove to be a disruptive force in global affairs? Are we headed towards a world marked by frequent strife, or will the end of Western dominance make the world more peaceful?

In this provocative new book, Oliver Stuenkel argues that our understanding of global order and predictions about its future are limited because we seek to imagine the post-Western world from a parochial Western-centric perspective. Such a view is increasingly inadequate in a world where a billions of people regard Western rule as a temporary aberration, and the rise of Asia as a return to normalcy. In reality, China and other rising powers that elude the simplistic extremes of either confronting or joining existing order are quietly building a "parallel order" which complements today s international institutions and increases rising powers' autonomy.

Combining accessibility with expert sensitivity to the complexities of the global shift of power, Stuenkel s vision of a post-Western world will be core reading for students and scholars of contemporary international affairs, as well as anyone interested in the future of global politics.
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What's Wrong with the United Nations and How to Fix it

What's Wrong with the United Nations and How to Fix it

Thomas G. Weiss

$37.95
Seven decades after its establishment, the United Nations and its system of related organizations and programs are perpetually in crisis. While the twentieth-century’s world wars gave rise to ground-breaking efforts at international organization in 1919 and 1945, today’s UN is ill-equipped to deal with contemporary challenges to world order. Neither the end of the Cold War nor the aftermath of 9/11 has led to the “next generation” of multilateral institutions. But what exactly is wrong with the UN that makes it incapable of confronting contemporary global challenges and, more importantly, can we fix it?

In this revised and updated third edition of his popular text, leading scholar of global governance Thomas G. Weiss takes a diagnose-and-cure approach to the world organization’s inherent difficulties. In the first half of the book, he considers: the problems of international leadership and decision making in a world of self-interested states; the diplomatic complications caused by the artificial divisions between the industrialized North and the global South; the structural problems of managing the UN’s many overlapping jurisdictions, agencies, and bodies; and the challenges of bureaucracy and leadership. 

The second half shows how to mitigate these maladies and points the way to a world in which the UN’s institutional ills might be “cured.”  Weiss’s remedies are not based on pious hopes of a miracle cure for the UN, but rather on specific and encouraging examples that could be replicated. With considered optimism and in contrast to received wisdom, he contends that substantial change is both plausible and possible.
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