Benjamin R. Barber, a political theorist whose book, “Jihad vs. McWorld,” presciently analyzed the socioeconomic forces leading to the. Jihad vs. McWorld: How Globalism and Tribalism Are Reshaping the World is a book by American political scientist Benjamin Barber, in which he puts forth . Benjamin R. Barber, Author, ‘Jihad vs. McWorld: Democracy As an. Rarely, as Richard Falk writes in The Great Terror War, has an event exerted such leverage .

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But has the author been to a PFI hospital lately, listened to a speech by Tony Blair, or stood on a British rail platform and found himself addressed as a “customer”?

Barber offers a penetrating and pertinent analysis of consumerist capitalism versus religious fundamentalism. The nation-state would play a diminished role, and sovereignty would lose some of its political potency.

He may remind you at times of Daniel Bell, whose Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism more or less blamed Playboy for the unravelling of the barebr ethic, but like Bell he’s no fool. The things that especially bother him are the erosion of nenjamin state’s responsibilities, the maniacal rush towards market solutions, the bogus ethical concerns of corporations and the potentially catastrophic competing demands of multiculturalism, as opposed to the mutually beneficial interdependence of pluralism.

McWorld is an essential text for anyone who wants to understand our troubled present and the crisis threatening our future. These tribal forces come in many varieties: Also, technology is now systematically integrated into everyone’s lives to the hihad where it “gives every person on earth access to every other person”. A thorough, gs look at the current state of world affairs. McWorld, which he seems rather better at defining and attacking, is benmamin “sterile cultural monism” we are all now very familiar with; the world of “shallow but uniform” consumer culture seen in shopping malls across the developed world, and encroaching on the developing world barbee.


Against this is the argument of those like Hasan al-Banna, founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, railing against the “wave of atheism and lewdness” rolling over Egypt in the s. He further posits that McWorld could ultimately win the “struggle”.

Barber has coined to describe the powerful and paradoxical interdependence of these forces. On the other hand, ethnic, religious, and racial hatreds are fragmenting the political landscape into smaller and smaller tribal units.

Review: Jihad vs McWorld by Benjamin R Barber | Books | The Guardian

How Globalism and Tribalism Are Reshaping the World is a book by American political scientist Benjamin Barberin which he puts forth a theory that describes the struggle between “McWorld” globalization and the corporate control of the political process and ” Jihad ” Arabic term for “struggle”, here modified to mean tradition and traditional valuesin the form of extreme nationalism or religious orthodoxy and theocracy.

The list, Barber points out, is very similar to that of William Prynne’s 17th-century tirade, Histriomastix ; but it is at this point that Barber seems most to sigh for the moral purity that we have lost while playing Nintendo and eating cheeseburgers. Views Read Edit View history. One may expect Guardian readers in particular to raise a cheer about this.

I told you so

Barber is anxious to make sure we understand that by “jihad” he means blinkered, intolerant and essentially tribal fundamentalism, which has nothing to do with mainstream Islam. Due to globalization, our market has expanded and is vulnerable to jiha transnational markets where free trade, easy access to banking and exchange of currency are available.


With the emergence of our markets, we have come jihav with international laws and treaties in order to maintain stability and efficiency in the interconnected economy.

Retrieved from ” https: Barber also describes through modern day examples what these ‘players’ are. Jul 30, Pages. Read it Forward Read it first.

Lechner and John Boli. For instance, cutting down a jungle will upset the overall oxygen balance, which affects our “global lungs”.

If ever a commentator on the mihad scene was to be allowed the dubious privilege of saying “I told you so” on September 11it was Professor Barber. On the one hand, capitalism on the global level uihad rapidly dissolving the social and economic barriers between nations, transforming the world’s diverse populations into a blandly uniform market.

On the other hand, ethnic, religious, and racial hatreds are fragmenting the political landscape into smaller and smaller tribal units.

Jihad vs. McWorld

Unregulated market forces encounter parochial which he calls tribal forces. Any book as ambitious and wide-ranging as this is going to have at least a few flaws.

In this important book, now more timely than ever before, he explores the alarming repercussions of this potent dialectic and in mihad new introduction sketches a democratic response to terrorism. See all books by Benjamin Barber. Download our Spring Fiction Sampler Now. Looking for More Great Reads? As benjamln imposes a culture of its own on a population, the tribal forces feel threatened and react.