Academic journal article Journal of Australian Political Economy

Erik Paul: Australia in the US Empire: A Study in Political Realism

Academic journal article Journal of Australian Political Economy

Erik Paul: Australia in the US Empire: A Study in Political Realism

Article excerpt

Erik Paul

Australia in the US Empire: A Study in Political Realism

Palgrave Macmillan, London, 222pp., hardback, $175.

This book offers a powerful critique of modern US imperial power and it's adverse influence in Australia, rippling throughout many aspects of the society. Its style is in the Noam Chomsky tradition of political writing - strong on critique and supported by information drawn selectively from a wide range of academic and popular sources. The implicit assumption is that, once armed with this critical analysis, progressive people will be motivated and empowered to drive change in a more egalitarian, peaceful and democratic direction.

The book has five chapters, beginning with one titled 'Geopolitics', setting the scene for an analysis of hegemony, new imperialism, power and hegemonic crisis. Paul describes his work as 'situated within the broader field of critical political economy as an emancipatory social science to generate knowledge relevant to challenge various forms of human oppression'. A long chapter on 'Globalisation' shows how economic interests driven by the pursuit of profit create profound social costs in terms of inequality, insecurity and the undermining of democracy. …

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