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Why It's Kicking Off Everywhere: The New Global Revolutions
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Why It's Kicking Off Everywhere: The New Global Revolutions

3.91  ·  Rating Details ·  183 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
The world is facing a wave of uprisings, protests and revolutions: Arab dictators swept away, public spaces occupied, slum-dwellers in revolt, cyberspace buzzing with utopian dreams. Events we were told were consigned to history—democratic revolt and social revolution—are being lived by millions of people.

In this compelling new book, Paul Mason explores the causes and cons
Paperback, 237 pages
Published January 9th 2012 by Verso (first published January 1st 2012)
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Babak Fakhamzadeh
Dec 14, 2013 Babak Fakhamzadeh rated it really liked it
Shelves: current-affairs
Very interesting, to a large extent because the book gives a very close-to-the-ground retelling of the revolutions, or attempted revolutions, that happened over the past year or so, Mason also attempts to provide plausible reasoning for why, indeed, it's all kicking off now.

Mason claims that the are three reasons for this:

+ The demographics of the revolt.
+ The technology
+ Human behavior.

Though a bit vague at times, Mason does go on to describe a few identifiers that have recently come to a
Dan Sharber
wow. i loved this book! but i think part of it is i love paul mason's writing so much. this should be read as a companion piece to Meltdown: The End of the Age of Greed or perhaps as an appendix to Live Working or Die Fighting: How the Working Class Went Global both of which go well with this. what i think is great about this book is the romantic, revolutionary optimism that permeates all of his accounts. sure people are new to activism and perhaps have some bad ideas and the structures to allow ...more
Mar 13, 2014 Stephen rated it it was amazing
I actually read the newest version of this book, and Mason puts his finger on the carotid artery of global unrest with incredible deftness, insight, and reflection on historical movements and first-person narratives with those on the front lines of dissent. "What the new Zeigeist clashes with are the power relations of the old hierarchical world. And this is the materialist explanation for 2011: it is as much about individuals versus hierarchies as it is about rich against poor." Two BILLION ...more
Odai Alsaeed
منذ عام ٢٠١١ والشارع العربي لم يهدأ من جراء الأحداث التي توالت صانعة ثورات إمتدت الى غالبية دولنا وإستشرت عدواها مولدة فقر إثر فقر نال من شعوبنا فتشردت في بقاع الأرض .... هذا الكتاب يعرض بشكل مختصر أماكن إندلاع الثورات ودوافعها الكامنة مستعرضاً الحالة ليترك لك الإستنتاج حيث أنه يجانب الموضوعية الى حد ما ....جيد
Sarah Jaffe
Paul Mason gets it. All of it.
Alister Black
Feb 16, 2012 Alister Black rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics
Paul Mason has become well known as the economics editor of Newsnight. He couldn’t have picked a better time to take up that post, he certainly has had no shortage of material. From the collapse of Lehman Brothers onwards, the crisis of capitalism has played out across the globe. But Mason hasn’t just stuck to stock prices and Bank of England statements. He has chased the story from the boardrooms to the streets. In this book he looks at the origins of the crisis and examines the wave of ...more
Robert Smith
May 18, 2013 Robert Smith rated it really liked it
Published by Politiker

It will long be remembered as the year of ‘the protestor’; as uprisings originating in the Arab world swept across the globe like a wild bushfire. Paul Mason, the economics editor of Newsnight, is therefore well placed to draw on his wide-ranging reportage in 2011 to answer the key question; how has this happened?

The global economy, troubled by a ‘shortfall between stagnating wages and increased consumption met by credit’, was bound to ‘explode’ Mason argues. Thus the influ
Feb 14, 2013 Politiker rated it liked it
By Robert Smith (

It will long be remembered as the year of ‘the protestor’; as uprisings originating in the Arab world swept across the globe like a wild bushfire. Paul Mason, the economics editor of Newsnight, is therefore well placed to draw on his wide-ranging reportage in 2011 to answer the key question; how has this happened?

The global economy, troubled by a ‘shortfall between stagnating wages and increased consumption met by credit’, was bound to ‘e
Clare O'Beara
This is a complex and thoughtful, yet at times in-your-face, explanation of what the author saw happening and why he believes it was happening in 2011.

As youth movements merged with legions of suddenly unemployed middle-class people on the streets of Greece, while millions living in extreme poverty occupied squares in Egypt and global capitalism protestors occupied parts of London and New York, clearly a time of rapid change is upon us.

Mason was at times on the front line as a journalist cover
Apr 07, 2012 Victoria rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this coherent evaluation of the key uprisings and social movements that have been taking place over the last 18 months or so. Originally a blog piece outlining the ten reasons why seemingly unrelated protests have emerged around the world in a contagion which has baffled governments, Mason has produced an in-depth analysis which shows a deep understanding of economics and political philosophy. I particularly liked how his piece became part of the movement in a ...more
Robyn Letson
Jan 20, 2013 Robyn Letson rated it liked it
I think that Why It's Kicking Off Everywhere was written in a hurry - and understandably so. Paul Mason is obviously excited by the waves of unrest and uprising that kicked off in Libya and Egypt at the beginning of 2011, and I'm grateful for that, as well as for his skill as a journalist and a writer. The book is at its strongest when Mason is in the streets and in people's homes, conducting interviews and documenting all the frenzy around him; his interviewees are ordinary folks at myriad ...more
Although this book took a long time for me to read, I still give it five stars because Paul Mason takes such in depth look at the possible reasons for the all current unrest and social movements that are taking place simultaneously around the world. He doesn't just look at economics (which is obviously a primary factor in the events of 2011) but at a variety of issues that forced people to the streets. Social networking, the freedom of the individual, the unsustainable system of neo-liberal ...more
Uwe Hook
Jun 10, 2015 Uwe Hook rated it really liked it
Paul Mason turns in a good work here. Good. But not great.

Good because he offers compelling descriptions of the events of Arab Spring 2011. As a journalist, his recount of these incidents should be good.

But this is not a great work because of his insistence on using economic theory, sometimes inaccurately, and history to explain the foundations and future direction of the worldwide protest movements of 2011. His economics "takes a walk" periodically by offering various monetary policy theories a
Terry Clague
Aug 15, 2013 Terry Clague rated it liked it
I read this on holiday and I've now forgotten most of what I was going to say about it but certainly it's not up to the standard of the other two books I've read from Mason (Live Working or Die Fighting and Meltdown).

To be fair to Mason (a superb journalist currently working on the BBC's Newsnight but soon to shift over to Channel Four News), it's clearly something of a rush job, made up from blog posts and essays written whilst travelling the world covering the Arab Spring and other uprisings t
Marilyn Olson
Sep 04, 2016 Marilyn Olson rated it really liked it
This book helps you understand young people's support of Bernie Sanders, the plight of our current troubles in government, how capitalism gets rid of the middle class and how social media plays a part in all of these situations. While the author offers hope at the end of the book and I hope the world can change, I see too many greedy individuals unwilling to help. Please do not vote for Trump.

Chris Pesterfield
Nov 23, 2014 Chris Pesterfield rated it liked it
This is a decent, if somewhat mixed, book. It feels as though he was working towards a tight deadline and didn't really have enough to say about the issue of global uprisings; the result being a couple of chapters that feel quite out of place.

That aside there's some decent analysis drawn upon, although even this feels a little like a run-through of the major theorist's found in a politics degree: so nothing new there. And at just over 200 hundred pages it is a slight read.

I'd recommend it if you
Lane Hannah
May 05, 2014 Lane Hannah rated it really liked it
Mason tells some pretty compelling stories of class and/or political struggles. As an investigative journalist he manages to really get to the human level of these conflicts that take you well beyond the broader images we see on tv. What makes this book that much more interesting is how many of these stories include technology (typically some form of social media) as the mechanism to rally significant numbers around a cause and to, in some cases, outfox the authorities. A great read if you have ...more
Steve Gillway
Jul 18, 2012 Steve Gillway rated it it was amazing
Shelves: politics, journalism
A real hot cross bun of a book. read it now or it'll be out of date. Mason does a great job of trying to link up all the disparate conflicts going on around the world. This book has an immediacy which is compelling because he seems to be a Kate Adie figure - if he turns up you're in deep deep trouble. He attempts to find historical parallels and he finds some political philosophy which is pertinent. His flailings around, trying to explain the here and now, show the complexity, power and ...more
Drew Buddie
Aug 24, 2012 Drew Buddie rated it it was amazing
This ttpye of book would not normally be my cup of tea, but I am mentioned in the opening page of the book as Paul Mason mentions that I was present at the meeting of minds from which sprang this brilliantly written, prophetic tome. Mason writes in accessible language which makes ithe message contained therein all the more disturbing because the reader can't pretend to be befuddled by jargon. Scary, but essential reading in today's financial climate.
Richard Paul
An interesting read although I think he gives too much credit to the new technologies and not enough to old fashioned class struggle. The basic premise that the new movements have been provoked initially by "graduates without a future" is sound and explains some of the character of the current social movements.
Charles Brown
Sep 29, 2014 Charles Brown rated it it was amazing
A good summary and engagement with the new wave of global protest and revolution. A little too uncritical of the dost runs of digital activism and a somewhat binary interpretation of the relationship between the new forms of organisation and the old but a useful spur towards the rethinking of orthodoxies. Very good indeed.
Sep 05, 2016 ... rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
بايخ وما يستحق القراءة
Mar 26, 2012 Christoph rated it it was amazing
Brilliant account of the uprisings of 2011 from Iran to OWS. Sometimes a bit optimistic about the use and relevance of social media and possibly a bit drastic in the lookout to the future. I highly recommend it to everyone who wants to understand contemporary struggles.
John Kaye
Mar 21, 2012 John Kaye rated it really liked it
Scary stuff. A nice blend of the reporter and the intellectual. I assume this is a book that keeps getting rewritten, online.
Mar 21, 2012 Athena rated it it was amazing
Shelves: politics
I highly recommend this book. Ranging, lively reportage and insightful analysis on economics, history, techology and philosophy.
Ben rated it really liked it
Jun 27, 2014
Nosmo rated it really liked it
Jul 03, 2012
Antonio Lopez
Antonio Lopez rated it really liked it
Dec 29, 2012
Tom rated it liked it
Jul 10, 2012
Caleb Parks
Caleb Parks rated it really liked it
Apr 28, 2013
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Paul Mason is an English journalist and broadcaster. He is economics editor of the BBC's Newsnight television programme and the author of several books.
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“depletion and climate change. For the older generation it’s easy to misunderstand the word ‘student’ or ‘graduate’: to my contemporaries, at college in the 1980s, it meant somebody engaged in a liberal, academic education, often with hours of free time to dream, protest, play in a rock band or do research. Today’s undergraduates have been tested every month of their lives, from kindergarten to high school. They are the measured inputs and outputs of a commercialized global higher education market worth $1.2 trillion a year—excluding the USA. Their free time is minimal: precarious part-time jobs are essential to their existence, so that they are a key part of the modern workforce. Plus they have become a vital asset for the financial system. In 2006, Citigroup alone made $220 million clear profit from its student loan book.2” 0 likes
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