The World is Flat, Yet Curved (and Excerpted)
September 09, 2008
Yesterday saw the release of two books you won't want t to miss, Thomas Friedman's Hot, Flat and Crowded and David M. Snick's The World is Curved: Hidden Dangers to the Global Economy. Judged by its title alone, you may think The World is Curved is a rebuke of Friedman's philosophy, but it's not.
Friedman compellingly describes globalization as it is, with concentration on the global supply chain for goods and services.The stories are mesmerizing--taking the reader from India's Silicon Valley in Bangalore to villages in northeastern China. [...] The book stands as a historic achievement in introducing a broad audience to the new world of opportunity and challenges beyond national borders.But, while Snick agrees with the premise of Friedman's worldview, he comes from the world of global finance and, well, to quote him:
Frankly speaking, from the perspective of the financial markets, the world is not flat. Unlike the world that produces goods and services, in the financial world nothing happens in a straight line. Instead, there is a continual series of unforeseen discontinuities--twists and turns of uncertainty that often require millions of market participants to stand conventional wisdom on its head. In the financial world, John, nothing much seems to happen in a straight line.So, at his wife's urging, he wrote a book about what he calls the second installment of the globalization story--"the financial side of the story." We posted the book's prologue on our excerpts blog yesterday. Friedman, of course, has written his own "second installment" of the globalization story, entitled Hot, Flat and Crowded, and you can contribute to its next edition. Through The Chapter 18 Project, Friedman is having readers send in their ideas for the the 2nd editions of the book's concluding chapter. From his website:
Hot, Flat, and Crowded has seventeen chapters. What's Chapter 18? Chapter 18 will be a completely new chapter that I'll add to the next edition of the book: Version 2.0. In it I hope to include the best ideas and proposals sent in from readers: ideas about clean energy, energy efficiency, and conservation; about petropolitics and nation-building in America; about how we can help take the lead in the renewal of our country and the Earth alike by going Code Green.To read the excerpt of The World is Curved, go here. To contribute ideas or proposals to Mr. Friedman for the next edition of Hot, Flat, and Crowded, head here.