Upheaval: Turning Points for Nations in Crisis Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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Audible Audiobook, Unabridged
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A brilliant new theory of how and why some nations recover from trauma and others don't, by the author of the landmark best sellers Guns, Germs, and Steel and Collapse.
In his earlier best sellers Guns, Germs and Steel and Collapse, Jared Diamond transformed our understanding of what makes civilizations rise and fall. Now, in the final audiobook in this monumental trilogy, he reveals how successful nations recover from crisis through selective change - a coping mechanism more commonly associated with personal trauma.
In a dazzling comparative study, Diamond shows us how seven countries have survived defining upheavals in the recent past - from US Commodore Perry's arrival in Japan to the Soviet invasion of Finland to Pinochet's regime in Chile - through a process of painful self-appraisal and adaptation, and he identifies patterns in the way that these distinct nations recovered from calamity. Looking ahead to the future, he investigates whether the US and the world are squandering their natural advantages on a path toward political conflict and decline. Or can we still learn from the lessons of the past?
Adding a psychological dimension to the awe-inspiring grasp of history, geography, economics, and anthropology that marks all Diamond's work, Upheaval reveals how both nations and individuals can become more resilient. The result is an audiobook that is epic, urgent, and groundbreaking.
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|Listening Length||18 hours and 44 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||May 07, 2019|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #14,788 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#7 in Genocide & War Crimes
#58 in Political Science History & Theory
#67 in Anthropology (Audible Books & Originals)
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Top reviews from the United States
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So when Diamond asserts that he wants to generate research for the next several decades on the factors that lead nations to overcome crises he is not speaking from mere hubris. However, I found Upheaval to be largely an exercise in loose analogies and long narratives with few testable hypotheses. While pleasant reading it is not the epochal work the author intended.
Diamond takes twelve principles from the well-established field of crisis response in psychology and applies them analogously to seven nation states in which he has legitimate subject matter expertise. But because most of us do not, he spends most of the book relating little known areas of world history such as Finland’s resistance to Russian imperialism or Meiji Japan’s reaction to modernization.
Again, while interesting, these histories are not paradigm shifting material. And the extent to which the 12 rules of personal crises correspond to national crises is not well established. That the last third of the book offers a rather standard liberal perspective on solving contemporary American crises is no help. Partisan gridlock (fueled by the Tea Party), restrictive voter registration laws and lack of spending on education are only crises if you think that government has the solutions to the nation’s problems. Those coming from a more libertarian or fiscally conservative perspective will be grinding their teeth.
In short, while an impressive survey of modern history, I did not find it in the same league as some of the author’s earlier works. Recommended only for those who stand in long lines at Barnes and Noble to get the next book by Diamond. Enjoyable but not paradigm shifting. Read if you want to judge for yourself whether Diamond has produced another masterpiece.
This is perhaps the most personal of Diamond's books. He begins with a short memoir of his own life, noting his responses to crises at various ages, and from there moves to his case studies of seven nations, with each of which he has some familiarity and attachment. It was intriguing to note the common themes that tie Finland's 1939-40 Winter War with the Soviet Union with the Meiji Reforms in nineteenth century Japan, or the similarities between the coups that brought down Chile's Salvador Allende in 1973 and Indonesia's Sukarno in 1965. Diamond also delineates the parallels between the reconstruction of post-World War II Germany and the transformation of Australia from a white society to a multi-racial one during the mid- to late-twentieth century.
The chapters that resonated most strongly to me were those dealing with the challenges facing the United States and the rest of the world in the twenty-first century. These are indeed daunting crises, and Diamond does not present a particularly optimistic vision for dealing with them, but his analyses are clear headed, with practical advice to which an astute future leadership would be well advised to listen.
Top reviews from other countries
One surprising omission in his account of changes in post-WWII Australia was the unilateral dismissal of the popular Gough Whitlam labour government by the Queen's appointed Governor-General, Sir John Kerr, in 1975, and replacement by the opposition leader, Malcolm Fraser, as prime minister — a unique event, never repeated, but illustrating how the UK can significantly affect Australian politics while the Queen is still head of state. In the 4 years that I lived in Australia in the late 80's, this was the one thing that most Australians raised when asked about the origin of anti-British sentiment (commonly I didn't even have to ask! It came up regularly over beers where "Goughy" was still remembered fondly!). Gallipoli was ancient (but heartfelt) history on ANZAC Day, and I never heard anyone mention the fall of Singapore as a major issue. I don't know why Australia hasn't bitten the bullet and declared itself a republic, or followed Canada's model, where the Queen is Queen of Canada but has no formal power.
Dann wünscht man sich einen Lektor der seine Arbeit macht. Es gibt eben nicht 90 Mio Deutsche. Solche Kleinigkeiten ziehen sich durch das Buch und zeigen mir fehlende Liebe im editorischen Prozess.
Daher mein Fazit: eingeschränkt lesenswert