The Global Lingua Franca is Globish, Which is NOT English -- And Never Will Be

Globish: How the English Language Became the World’s Language

By Robert McCrum.

W.W. Norton & Co, 352 pages.

Reviewed by Michael Mosettig

When you Google for the source of the oft-quoted aphorism that "English is the easiest language to speak badly," the answer quickly pops up: George Bernard Shaw. This lead sentence of mine incarnates the theme of this book on the spread of English as the world's default language. In my sentence, a corporate name, Google, becomes one of the most widely used verbs in the lexicon. And that particular corporation is the symbol of the exploding worldwide web and communications technology that expresses itself in English.

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America Winning New Cultural War For Global Audiences - Europe Lags In Producing Widely Accessible “Products”

America has opened a lead that will perhaps not be overtaken in the global market for “cultural exports” in the form of digital materials – the movies and music, books and broadcasting and all the other media that shapes global consumers’ taste in entertainment and their view of the world they live in.

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Kosovo’s Independence: A Success Story For U.S.-EU Diplomacy: Russia’s Refusal To Agree — Putin’s First “Nyet”

Kosovo and its success in gaining independence has always been a Balkans sideshow, never commanding the attention of a big international audience. But the often-tense political process that culminated in the unilateral declaration of independence in early 2008 is a fascinating and instructive narrative. It is reconstructed in a new book that recounts how a few tenacious Western diplomats and their governments managed, step by step, to forge a workable international outcome in a potentially explosive situation.

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On Both Sides Of Atlantic, Technology Seen As Driver Of Innovation – And Jobs

In today’s age of specialization and over-specialization, more and more books are written for —and read by — smaller and smaller groups of people. Yet every so often a book appears that  covers a seminal topic in such an eye-opening way that it should be read by everyone who wishes to understand the society and culture we live in.  The Nature of Technology is such a book: it provides a fundamental understanding of what technology is, where technology comes from and how it evolves.  This book – the latest from this distinguished thinker about complex issues – has been compared to Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions as doing for technological innovation what Kuhn’s book did for our understanding scientific discovery. In our era, it may turn out be as important, about technology, as Charles Darwin’s work was about biology.

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Savage Century: Back to Barbarism
By Thérèse Delpech, Translated By George Holoch

Reviewed by William J. Peterson Jr.

In her book, Savage Century: Back to Barbarism, Thérèse Delpech blends her unique talents as strategist and historian into a forceful reminder of how the violence on an unprecedented scale that marked the 20th century was primarily a result of weak and mindless leadership. In offering this analysis, she is not writing history for its own sake, but offering a warning that similar fecklessness now could breed even greater violence in our century. Her book provides its insights into history in order to illustrate why strong political leadership is so important now. Written in French in 2005, the book only recently appeared in English, and it still seems right on target. With a global financial system teetering, the fight against terrorism continuing and a new more multi-polar world emerging unsteadily, leaders would be well-advised to bear in mind her account of how crises that start on “the periphery” of the geo-political centers can, if not recognized, gradually engulf the center in a global upheaval.

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