Tuesday, July 28, 2015

The Revenge of Geography by Robert Kaplan

This book's full title is The Revenge of Geography: What the map tells us about the coming conflicts and the ballet against fate.

In the opening he talks about the fact that there are worse things than communism and totalitarianism. That is a situation with no one in charge. To explore this subject more, you can read Better Angels of Our Nature by Steven Pinker. I have a review of this book on this site.

He has a lot of interesting things to say about America including the fact that one reason it prospered was because it was the last great tract of land in the temperate zone. There is not much land in the temperate zone in the southern hemisphere, especially in South America.

I think that listening to and seeing speeches by authors I read, enhances my understanding of what I read. You hear, see and read what an author has to say. So this enhances my understanding and enjoyment of the books that I read. I must admit I really like to see people speak, rather than listen to audio media. I find the speeches more interesting.

There is an article by Kaplan connected to this book at University of Colorado. Kaplan has his own at site. There is a lot of great articles he wrote on this site.

The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) hosted the book launch for The Revenge of Geography on YouTube. On this program David Ignatius, Associate Editor and Columnist at The Washington Post, interviewed Kaplan. There is a 30 minute interview followed at the 35 minute mark by Q&A with the audience. You can see a short review version of that at 7 minutes .

Marines' memorial association meeting and uploaded by World Affairs Council is a speech by Robert Kaplan. Kaplan's speech starts about 9 minutes in. His speech is to the 48 minute mark and then there are questions.

There is a radio interview by NPR. After being introduced, Kaplan talks for about 5 minutes and then questions are taken by him to answer. People are phoning in with their questions.

And, if you really want to read a print review, there is a good one at The Wall Street Journal. The value of print reviews is that you get a different view point from the author's. However, a lot of people disagree with the negative view Felipe Fernandez-Armesto has of this book. The book review at Good Reads is much more upbeat about this book.

Also, an index of the books I have reviewed are on my website at Books. Follow me on Twitter.