June 25, 2007


cos-mop-o-lite, n, a person who is cosmopolitan in his ideas, life, etc.; citizen of the world.

cos-mo-pol-i-tan, adj. 1. belonging to all the world; not limited to just one part of the political, social, commercial, or intellectual world. 2. free from local, provincial, or national ideas, prejudice, or attachments. 3. of or characteristic of a cosmopolite. -n. 4. a person who is free from local, provincial, or national prejudices, etc.; citizen of the world; cosmopolite.

Connelly, Karen, The Lizard Cage (New York: Doubleday, 2005) (fiction).

Fernandes, Edna, Holy Warriors: A Journey into the Heart of Indian Fundamentalism (New Delhi: Penguin/Viking, 2006).

Fisher, William W. III, Promises to Keep: Technology, Law, and the Future of Entertainment (Stanford: Stanford Law and Politics, 2004) (One would assume that all the intellectual property and entertainment law students would have read this.).

Ghazvinian, John, Untapped: The Scramble for Africa’s Oil (Orlando: Harcourt, 2007) (“Since 1990 alone, the petroleum industry has invested more than $20 billion in exploration and production activity in Africa. A further $50 billion will be spent between now and the end of the decade, the largest investment in the continent’s history—and around one-third of it will come from the United States. Three of the world’s largest oil companies—the British-Dutch consortium Shell, France’s Total, and America’s Chevron—are spending 15 percent, 30 percent, and 35 percent respectively of their global exploration and production budget s in Africa. Chevron alone is in the process of rolling out $20 billion in African projects over a five-year period.” Id. at 7. “In December 20000 the National Intelligence Council, an internal CIA think tank, published a report in which it declared unambiguously that sub0Saharan Africa ‘will play an increasing role in global energy markets,’ and predicted that the region would provide 25 percent of North American oil imports by 2015, up from the 15 percent or so at the time.” Id. at 8.).

Green, Dominic, Three Empires on the Nile: The Victorian Jihad, 1869-1899 (New York: The Free Press, 2007).

Hitchens, Christopher, God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything (New York: Twelve, 2007).

Howell, Georgina, Gertrude Bell: Queen of the Desert, Shaper of Nations (New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2006) (Bell, referred to as the female Lawrence of Arabia, played a central role in the creation of Iraq.).

Merida, Kevin & Michael A. Fletcher, Supreme Discomfort: The Divided Soul of Clarence Thomas (New York: Doubleday, 2007) (I am not a fan of Justice Thomas, but he is right on this point. “Thomas is far more pessimistic about race than Marshall ever was, which is ironic given his insistence on a colorblind view of the law and given his personal history. Thomas has lived most of his life as the only black—or one of a tiny minority of blacks—in overwhelmingly white settings. But almost every step of the way, he has been nagged by doubts and has burned with anger at slights, real and imagined. One bitter lesson Thomas has taken from his experience is that racism is a sad, immutable fact. The sooner black people realize that and gird themselves for that reality, he say, the better off they will be. It is an admonition that he carries into his view of the law.” “‘Conscious and unconscious prejudice persists in our society,’ Thomas wrote in concurrence in a 1992 case, Georgia v. McCollum. ‘Common sense and common experience confirm this understanding.’” Id. at 276. “‘We have an interesting race sometimes,’ Thomas said in a 1994 speech. It is the only race that will evict those who are smart, too successful, know too much, do too well, then you can’t be black anymore. You lose touch. This is the only race where it is a shame to be knowledgeable. It is a shame for someone to know calculus. That doesn’t make sense to me. Then during Black History Month we say we discovered mathematics.’” Id. at 371.).
Giroux, 2007).

Shapiro, Ian, Containment: Rebuilding a Strategy Against Global Terror (Princeton &Oxford: Princeton U. Press, 2007) (“The United States stands in manifest need of a national security doctrine that can be appealing to the American electorate, defensible in the court of international public opinion, and attractive to America’s democratic allies. In this book I make the case that, suitably modified for the post-9/11 world, the doctrine of containment developed at the outset of the Cold War meets this need better than the Bush Doctrine or any other going alternative.” Id. at xiii-xiv. “Adam Przeworski and others have founds a strong relationship between economic conditions, in particular per capita income, and the likelihood of democratic survival. Democracies appear never to die in wealthy countries, whereas poor democracies are fragile—exceedingly so when annual per capita incomes fall below $2,000 (measured in 1985 dollars). When per capita income falls below this threshold, democracies have a one-in-ten chance of collapsing within a year. Between per capita incomes of $2,001 and $5,000 this ratio falls to one-in-sixteen. Above $6,055 annual per capita income, democracies, once established, appear to last indefinitely. Moreover, poor democracies are more likely to survive when governments succeed in generating development and avoiding economic crises.” "This suggests that it is wise for the United States to help improve economic conditions in the developing world. It also means adopting economic policies and international aid and debt policies that will alleviate poverty there.” Id. at 117-118. Note: In reading/studying this book I am reminded of an observation rendered in Randall B. Wood, LBJ: Architect of American Ambition (2006). “For the most part during the 1950s, the Soviets sought to project their power not by means of military aggression but through forging ideological links with anticolonial revolutionary movements in developing areas and providing non-Western governments with economic and military aid. Washington seemed oblivious to the fact that indigenous nationalism and local rivalries were far more important in most third world crises than the East-West confrontation. In its obsession with the cold war, the Eisenhower administration tended always to align the United States with entrenched, pro-Western oligarchies and to see revolutionary nationalism as part of the international communist conspiracy. As a result, U.S. policy frequently drove local nationalist movements into the arms of the communist China and the Soviet Union.” Id. at 319. If one reads “war on terror” for ‘cold war,’ and reads ‘terrorism’ or ‘Islamism’ for ‘communism’, then perhaps there is a cautionary tale here for contemporary United States administrations in thinking about containment.).

Shaxson, Nicholas, Poisoned Wells: The Dirty Politics of African Oil (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007) “The aid theorist William Easterly remembers a time, not so long ago, when economists looking at tropical countries pretty much ignored politics. ‘It was only later,’ he said, ‘that we economists realized that government officials are people, too.’ Economic theories that ignore human behavior break down in these African nations. So, to try to understand better what is going one in the oil zones, I have chosen to focus not on the countries themselves but instead on a handful of their strangest, most remarkable, and most infuriating citizens. Their stories will help expose Africa’s oil for what it is: a threat to liberty, democracy, and fee markets around the globe.” Id. at 7.).

Shibusawa, Naoko, America’s Geisha Ally: Reimagining the Japanese Enemy (Cambridge: Harvard U. Press, 2006) (This history is well worth reading, especially for those (law students) interested in foreign relations. "How was the American public able to accept an alliance with Japan when not so long ago the 'Japs' had been thoroughly vilified as subhuman, bucktoothed apes with Coke-bottle glasses? Elite policymakers may have decided to make Japan a bulwark against communism, but how did the public come to accept this policy so soon after World War II?" "This remarkable reversal from hated racial enemy to valuable ally can best be understood by tracing the shifts in attitudes toward the Japanese in American public discourse. The postwar public discourse assumed two 'natural' or universally recognized hierarchical relationships--man over woman and adult over child--and compared them to the relationship between the United States, a 'white' nation, and Japan, a 'nonwhite' nation. Portraying Japan as a woman made its political subjugation appear as natural as a geisha's subservience to a male client, while picturing Japan as a child emphasized its potential to 'grow up' into a democracy. After the war, Americans began to view the U.S.-Japan relationship through these commonly accepted, preexisting ideologies about gender and maturity. By conceiving the bilateral relationship in the mutually the reinforcing frameworks of gender and maturity, many Americans began seeing the Japanese not as savages but as dependents that needed U.S. guidance and benevolence. In other words, the ideologies of gender and maturity helped to minimize racial hostility. Feminizing the hated enemy or regarding them as immature youths made it easier to humanize the Japanese and to recast them as an American responsibility." Id. at 4-5. Again, well worth thre read.).

Shulman, David, Dark Hope: Working for Peace in Israel and Palestine (Chicago & London: U. Chicago Press, 2007) (Agree or disagree, this book offers a perspective on the conflict which knows no end. "I am an Israeli. "I live in Jerusalem. I have a story, not yet finished, to tell." "Hence these notes that, however one-sided they may be, speak of my own small slice of the reality in Israel and the occupied territories in the unhappy years 2002-2006. Throughout this period I did as many other did: I went to demonstrations; wrote letters to the minister of defense and the chief prosecutor of the army and the prime minister; went on convoys bringing food and medicine supplies to Palestinian villages; was beaten up by settlers--the usual protocol for those active in the Israeli peace camp. I also read newspapers, taught my classes at the university, went to India, listened to music. Life went on as it always does, even in the midst of worsening disaster." Id. at 1.).

Vassanji, M. G., The Book of Secrets (New York: Picador, 1994) (fiction).

"Self-righteousness [ ] spawns arrogance, selfishness, indifference.... Don’t let the weight of things numb you. Read, think, disagree with everything, if you like – but force your mind outward." Anton Myrer, Once an Eagle (Carlise, Pa.: Army War College Press, 1977), at 194.
cos-mop-o-lite, n, a person who is cosmopolitan in his ideas, life, etc.; citizen of the world.