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Hegemony or Survival: America's Quest for Global Dominance

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  9,043 Ratings  ·  335 Reviews
From the world's foremost intellectual activist, an irrefutable analysis of America's pursuit of total domination and the catastrophic consequences that are sure to follow

The United States is in the process of staking out not just the globe but the last unarmed spot in our neighborhood-the heavens-as a militarized sphere of influence. Our earth and its skies are, for the B
ebook, 288 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by Henry Holt & Company, Inc. (first published 2003)
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Feb 13, 2008 Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy, politics
I am positively drawn to the words of Chomsky for the following reasons: he is unflinchingly honest, he writes with a dispassionate demeaner that appears to be completely disinterested, he is never episodic, and the implications of what he writes are startling and desperately important.
Chomsky writes very matter-of-factly, using occasional sarcasm, but never retreating to overblown rhetoric. His quote-heavy prose is straightforward and undeniable. This man is an encyclopedia of historical knowle
Jan 05, 2009 Chris rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A quick read, and has a tone exactly like watching Chomsky speak. The assertions which seem to him incontestable, the thick and layered cynicism, the stoic application of morals no matter the context or scale. The title refers to Chomsky's belief that the world has two options: American global hegemony, or the survival of the human race. If the human race is to survive, America must cease it's quest, almost completed, for global dominance. However, he does not develop the reasons for this to be ...more
Brook Miscoski
Aug 03, 2007 Brook Miscoski rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who want an intro or surface level viewpoint on US dominance issues
I think that the issue of hegemony vs valid self interest is a complex issue, and depending on your political biases, Chomsky may be a good place to start. Hegemony or Survival, like most of Chomsky's books on foriegn policy issues, gives a good window into what he has written on those issues. As a mildly idealistic pragmatist, I appreciate the critique of hegemony but did not feel that the analysis and factual assertions were adeaquate to enhance my understanding. I felt let down by a writer wh ...more
Jun 19, 2009 Aaron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
What to conclude about U.S. foreign policy from Chomsky's fierce, eye-opening critique?

Simply put, the policy is to dominate and control the world politically and economically by wielding an unmatched and ever-expanding military power to crush whomever it deems a threat whenever it wants.

Hence, the title: "hegemony" refers to the current trajectory of U.S. foreign policy (accelerated by Bush II primarily by way of his doctrine of preemptive war in the aftermath of 9/11) while "survival" refers t
Jan 14, 2011 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics, non-fiction
With crystal clear prose and thoroughly researched (and copiously footnoted) detail, Noam Chomsky reveals the current Iraq war to be just the most recent in a line of ultra-right nationalist aggression by both of the dominant political parties of America as they force (often successfully) an elitist American agenda to the forefront of world politics. Chomsky logically connects the current situation with past American terrorism waged against Nicaragua, Cuba, etc. The man is without question one o ...more
Jean Tessier
Diatribe against American imperial policies.

Early on, Chomsky warns his reader not to confuse state power with a country and its people. One can be critical of state policy while praising the country and its culture. Interestingly enough, one reviewer on has fallen into that trap and assumes that since Chomsky is critical of the current administration, he must hate America too.

Chomsky documents how the Monroe Doctrine has shaped American policy, both foreign and domestic for the past
Scott Lupo
Sep 06, 2011 Scott Lupo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
My first Noam Chomsky book although I have read articles and excerpts from him. This is a great book that details U.S. foreign relations policies up to 2004. Subject matter wise he is THE expert. Not only has he done his homework through diligent research he also puts these complex, multi-layered, and nuanced problems into the light. If you live in a world where you think the U.S. is perfect and altruistic in its dealings with the rest of the world you may not want to read this book as it will p ...more
Mar 02, 2012 Caley rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition

An incredibly interesting initial argument that gets so battered over the head and dissected utilizing the same damn historical case studies over and over that I could barely finish this book. Chomsky's logic is absolutely sound and the history backs him up. But this book would read infinitely better as a conference paper or as ONE chapter versus the rambling, jumpy, and sometimes amateur analysis it offers instead. Chomsky also seems to suffer here from a real bad case of organization; section
Jun 17, 2016 Nabilah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Any caring non-Americans knew what USA did and is doing. Noam Chomsky just managed to write it down into one neat book.
Aug 29, 2016 Graham rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those books that's gonna leave me in a vaguely angry mood for the next month. Jesus.
May 16, 2013 spoko rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, politics
In case you're not familiar, this is the book that Hugo Chavez cited at the UN, the day he was railing against the US and calling Dubya the devil and whatever else. A group here in town was doing kind of an impromptu book-group reading of it, so I thought I'd join in. I knew that few of them had read Chomsky before, and being liberals I wondered what they'd think. Personally, I'm a little ways left of liberal, but I'm not the world's biggest Chomsky fan. Before this one I had read some short stu ...more
Zach Irvin
Jun 28, 2016 Zach Irvin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Chomsky is ruthless in this book. He extensively quotes elected officials, academics and news pundits to expose the jingoistic neoliberal agenda America has pursued for decades. Most shocking to me is the candor used by officials when talking about the brutal and exploitative methods America uses to establish power around the world. From the support of murderous dictators to the outright disposal of democratically elected officials that do not support American business interests. Chomsky reveals ...more
Sep 22, 2011 Ahmed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
"Not to have read him is to genuinely court ignorance" -Nation

This quote, on the back cover, just about sums it up. With each passing page you become more aware that you know next to nothing about events in the world today, and more specifically how much the US is involved. In fact, it is unlikely that you will initially believe how many pies the US has its fingers in. The portrayal of events feels extremely conspiratorialist, but the evidence is all expounded upon at great length.

The book assum
Greg Talbot
Jul 01, 2013 Greg Talbot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Chomsky, long recognized as a leading far-left writer and thinker, has something of a defining book in “Hegemony or Surivival”. In some ways, his reflective work on the U.S.'s involvement in global affairs is more important and instructive in 2013, than when the book was published in 2003. Not only does Chomsky give a frightening but comprehensive view of where we are as a country, he details the dark dirty wars that are still largely unknown to the US public. Whether the killing of six Jesuit S ...more
Nov 30, 2009 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Talks all about the first war on terror in the 80's, and the destruction it caused, the failed attempts by the opressed to get america out of their country and to stop killing everyone, America's stranglehold on the UN. He spells out how America is so full of shit by the application of double standards, both philosophically and in the UN, where the rules don't apply to it. It's a pretty sad state of affairs really, when a person or entity is so full of shit as to pronounce vigorously one thing a ...more
Amanda L
Chomsky, use your words. To be fair, I wasn't actually able to finish it (yet) but do intend to as it is a thesis demanding attention; however, I did get far enough to shake my judgmental fist. How can entire paragraphs--- let alone pages-- of text be comprised entirely of a string of isolated quotes by other sources with no context? It was like compilation essay(s) by an inexperienced schmuck of an undergrad lacking any semblance of an original thought in his head or influence--- not a renowned ...more
Erik Graff
Jul 21, 2010 Erik Graff rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Chomsky fans
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Another Chomsky screed, this being an overview of the history of modern American foreign policy in light of its contemporary occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq in the ostensive cause of fighting "terrorism." Chomsky demonstrates again and again and again that the real, the maximum terrorist is the United States of America.

I believe I bought this book at the Evanston Library booksale and lost it by leaving it in the washroom at work. I hope the finder reads the thing.
Jul 29, 2007 Pablo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read this book, or live in America at your own peril. To paraphrase one reviewer, to not read Chomsky is to court ignorance.
David Cupples
Aug 16, 2014 David Cupples rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
(I should add that Chomsky goes into important issues of "humanitarian intervention," in the military sense, in particular with regard to Kosovo.)

Published post-9/11, 2003, this is as all Chomsky's work indispensable to understanding what's going on in the world and power's role in effecting it. To readers not well acquainted with Chomsky's writings, this and all his work are likely to seem unbelievable, terribly far-fetched, just too crazy to be true. After all, we grew up to know - not just be
Jan 02, 2017 Anudari rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My first full book by Chomsky... How eye-opening on the topics of:

1) neo-classical economics and globalization; their effect of a widening wealth gap and the resulting 'political instability, cultural alienation, ... ethnic, ideological and religious extremism'. He wrote this in 2003 and accurately foreshadowed the events of 2016.

2) the US and UK's rejection of the principle of universality. Think of colonialism, economic imperialism, funding/backing of military coups, support for dictators (and
Foreign Policy from a Disdent View: This book is simply fantastic in my opinion. As critique of U.S. foreign policy for the past 50 year, the writing is exceptional for its clarity and depth. Chomsky methodically picks apart the multiple aspects of foreign relations: economic, military, cultural, and places them within the grand context of America's strategic aims for maintains its role as leader of the world. Dismissing what is said on governments behalf and focusing on the much more accurate i ...more
Sep 25, 2010 Steve rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
Few contemporary intellectuals divide opinion quite like Chomsky. To his defenders, he sets out an irrefutable case that US history is dominated by an underlying imperialistic aim that is self-serving, hypocritical and essentially malign. To his detractors, his argument often boils down to "US capitalism is responsible for the world's problems, violent resistance to its proliferation is inevitable, therefore that too is the fault of capitalism."

In truth, I've yet to be wholly convinced by Choms
Oct 07, 2008 Mr. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Noam Chomsky provides yet another sweeping political indictment of the United States, and this time he places the human species entire as potential victims of far-right elite power. This volume is extraordinarily broad and far-reaching. Chomsky discusses the Bush doctrine, Iraq, the Middle East, Globalization, the Cold War, and Nuclear proliferation to name justa few. His scholarship is praiseworthy, although he continues to overstretch himself. On the issue of the FRY, Chomsky continues to make ...more
As usual, Chomsky is right on the money when it comes to understanding the inner workings of the American Empire and the real goals that are pursued by the American foreign policy. Chomsky details the hypocrisy of the rhetoric of the American government vs its actions when it comes to most of the world including such staunch allies as Great Britain, Turkey and Israel. He also goes on to detail the terror by proxy in which the US engages to keep the rest of the world in check.

Where Chomsky fails
John somers
An insightful look at Americas foreign policy for the las 50 years. Support for some of the most evil rulers of the 20th century turning a blind eye to murder, racism and repression so long as it served the interests of big business and branding the actions of those who refuse to obey terrorism while the equally repugnant actions of America and her clients such as Israel and Columbia go unreported. Particulary loved the quote wherethe Reagan administration referred to the ANC as one of the world ...more
Feb 18, 2012 Mohammed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As an Arab who saw, heard, or watched the things Noam mentioned in his book regarding America's policy in the middie east, I must say that he's of the few Americans who are aware of what's going on around them.

I like Noam, I studied a lot of his books when I was at college. I also had some difficulties understanding his high level language.

The last thing I noticed was that, I think Noam is being too harsh on America in this book. America has done a lot of horrible things, but it also did a lot o
James M. Madsen, M.D.
I personally find much of Chomsky's political analysis to be very compelling, although his penchant for one-sided polemicism and for not providing opinions on the other sides of the issues weakens his case. Also, although I respect his unflinching commitment, his uncompromising positions, forcefully presented, have led to his being sidelined in much serious political discourse; and that is, I think, extremely unfortunate. His political positions are scary ones, but ones that deserve, in my opini ...more
Rich in information. Never have I read a book that begged to have all the sources read. Chomsky's breadth of historical knowledge is vast, but many of these topics warrant their own books. In many ways, it seems like the opposing argument is just ignored....will add more later
Feb 23, 2016 Joshua rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Noam Chomsky punched Uncle Sam in the face on every page.
Ericka Clou
This is a long refutation of the concept of that it is helpful to security or morally right to maintain American hegemony. It is also, to a lesser extent, a refutation of that democratic peace theory (the theory that democratic countries go to war with each other less) somehow contributes to increased world peace.

The book is a scathing indictment of American foreign policy which is equal parts nightmarishly frightening (talks about American "terrorist actions") and somehow also totally boring.
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Do we by this? 7 74 Jun 14, 2012 12:19AM  
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Avram Noam Chomsky is an American linguist, philosopher, political activist, author, and lecturer. He is an Institute Professor and professor emeritus of linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Chomsky is credited with the creation of the theory of generative grammar, considered to be one of the most significant contributions to the field of linguistics made in the 20th century. H
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“It is useful to remember that no matter where we turn, there is rarely any shortage of elevated ideals to accompany the resort to violence.” 1 likes
“Destroying hope is a critically important project. And when it is achieved, formal democracy is allowed—even preferred, if only for public relation purposes. In more honest circles, much of this is conceded. Of course, it is understood much more profoundly by beasts in men's shapes who endure the consequences of challenging the imperatives of stability and order.” 0 likes
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