The European Dream: How Europe's Vision of the Future Is Quietly Eclipsing the American Dream [NOOK Book]

Overview

The national bestseller that shows how the American Dream is languishing, surpassed worldwide by a powerful alternative in the lifestyle of the new Europe.


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The European Dream: How Europe's Vision of the Future Is Quietly Eclipsing the American Dream

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Overview

The national bestseller that shows how the American Dream is languishing, surpassed worldwide by a powerful alternative in the lifestyle of the new Europe.


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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Why are so few Americans paying attention to the dramatic changes taking place across the Atlantic, Rifkin (The End of Work) asks in his provocative and well-argued manifesto for the new European Union. Famously, Americans "live to work" while Europeans "work to live," and Rifkin demonstrates statistically and anecdotally that Europe's humane approach to capitalism makes for a healthier, better-educated populace. The U.S. lags behind in its unimaginative approach to working hours, productivity and technology, Rifkin claims, while Europe is leading the way into a new era while competing well in terms of productivity. Rifkin traces the cultural roots of what he says is America's lack of vision to its emphasis on individual autonomy and the accumulation of wealth; Europe's dream is more rooted in connectedness and quality of life. Americans may be risk takers, but Rifkin is more admiring of risk-sensitive European realism, as well as its secularism and social democracy. Exploring the history behind the two continents' wildly differing sensibilities, Rifkin examines the myth of the U.S. as "land of opportunity" and the two continents' contrasting attitudes to foreign policy, peace keeping and foreign aid. Rifkin's claims are not new, but he writes with striking clarity, combining the insights of contemporary sociologists and economists with up-to-the minute data and powerfully apt journalistic observations. While he may appear to idealize Europe's new direction, Rifkin's comparative study is scrupulously thorough and informative, and his rigor will please all readers interested in the future of world affairs. Agent, Jim Stein. (Aug.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Foreign Affairs
The new European dream celebrated by Rifkin "emphasizes community relationships over individual autonomy, cultural diversity over assimilation, quality of life over the accumulation of wealth, sustainable development over unlimited material growth, deep play over unrelenting toil, universal human rights and the rights of nature over property rights, and global cooperation over the unilateral exercise of power." Insofar as this book is a response to Robert Kagan's somewhat cartoonish view of Europe (as Venus, to the United States' Mars), it both celebrates the virtues that Kagan dismisses and aims to refute the proudly Martian view of the United States that Kagan holds. Kaganites will find much here that they will once again deem absurd: Rifkin is concerned with individual quality of life, not political and military power. He also overlooks glaring differences among European nations. Nevertheless, it will be a pity if American overconfidence leads them to ignore this valiant attempt to show that the American way of organizing life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is not necessarily the best (even if some of Rifkin's musings on "the third stage of human consciousness" are a bit windy). Rifkin is no starry-eyed idealist-he questions the "thickness" of the European dream and the persistence of European cynicism-and he has studied Europe seriously and with an open mind. His book deserves to be read.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101118573
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 8/18/2005
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 448
  • Sales rank: 891,552
  • File size: 510 KB

Meet the Author

One of the most popular social thinkers of our time, Jeremy Rifkin is the bestselling author of The European Dream, The Hydrogen Economy, The Age of Access, The Biotech Century, and The End of Work. A fellow at the Wharton School's Executive Education Program, he is president of The Foundation on Economic Trends in Bethesda, MD.
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Table of Contents

The European Dream Introduction

New Lessons from the Old World
1. The Slow Death of the American Dream
2. The New Land of Opportunity
3. THe Quiet Economic Miracle

The Making of the Modern Age
4. Space, Time, and Modernity
5. Creating the Individual
6. Inventing the Ideolgy of Property
7. Forging Capitalist Markets and Nation-States

The Coming Global Era
8. Network Commerce in a GLobalized Economy
9. The "United States" of Europe
10. Government Without a Center
11. Romancing the Civil Society
12. The Immigrant Dilemma
13. unity in Diversity
14. Waging Peace
15. A Second Enlightenment
16. Universalizing the European Dream

Notes
Bibliography
Index

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