Yofish's Reviews > The Second World: Empires and Influence in the New Global Order

The Second World by Parag Khanna
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U 50x66
's review
Jan 21, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: to-read-nonfiction
Recommended to Yofish by: Post review Mar 2008
Read in November, 2014

(Really more like 3.5 stars)

It's pretty well-writtten, and he seems quite knowledgeable about a pretty wide range of countries.

His point is that there are a lot of countries out there that aren't quite 'first world' but have advanced beyond 'third world.' Each chapter (more or less) is about a different country, where they've been and where they're going. Sometimes it seems like the main point is which of the three current dominent economies/cultures (US, European Union, China) will most take hold in the country in question.

His choices are a little odd (Iran is not 3rd world, but India is? Israel isn't first world, and Venezuela and Columbia aren't third world?) But whatever. I certainly learned a lot (In the 1920's, Iran's GDP was bigger than Spain's?!).

One problem is that with all the dipping in and out of different countries, I forgot things as fast as I was learning them. The other main problem is that it was written in 2008, so some of it is out of date. He was pretty prescient about Egypt, but the chapters on Ukraine and Syria are just a waste of space now.

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