The Globalization Paradox: Democracy and the Future of the World Economy

Overview

"Cogent, well-written . . . critiques unalloyed globalization enthusiasts, taking aim at their desire to fully liberalize foreign trade ad capital movements." ?Foreign Affairs
In this eloquent challenge to the reigning wisdom on globalization, Dani Rodrik reminds us of the importance of the nation-state, arguing forcefully that when the social arrangements of democracies inevitably clash with the international demands of globalization, national priorities should take precedence. Combining history with insight, ...

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The Globalization Paradox: Democracy and the Future of the World Economy

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Overview

"Cogent, well-written . . . critiques unalloyed globalization enthusiasts, taking aim at their desire to fully liberalize foreign trade ad capital movements." —Foreign Affairs
In this eloquent challenge to the reigning wisdom on globalization, Dani Rodrik reminds us of the importance of the nation-state, arguing forcefully that when the social arrangements of democracies inevitably clash with the international demands of globalization, national priorities should take precedence. Combining history with insight, humor with good-natured critique, Rodrik’s case for a customizable globalization supported by a light frame of international rules shows the way to a balanced prosperity as we confront today’s global challenges in trade, finance, and labor markets.

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Editorial Reviews

Alan S. Blinder
“Dani Rodrik may be globalization's most prominent—and most thoughtful—gadfly.”
Gordon Brown
“Takes on the biggest issue of our time—globalization—and eloquently enlarges the debate about the extent and limits of global cooperation.”
Steven Pearlstein
Although [Rodrik's] message is nuanced and rigorous, drawing on history, logic and the latest economic data, he manages to convey it in simple, powerful prose that any reader can follow.
—The Washington Post
The American Prospect
Simply the best recent treatment of the globalization dilemma that I've read, by an economist or anyone else….He gives us nothing less than a general theory of globalization, development, democracy, and the state. The book provides the pleasure of following a thoughtful, critical mind working through a complex puzzle. Rodrik writes in highly friendly and nontechnical prose, blending a wide-ranging knowledge of economic history and politics and a gentle, occasionally incredulous, skepticism about the narrow and distorting lens of his fellow economists.— Robert Kuttner
Steven Pearlstein - Washington Post
“Although [Rodrik’s] message is nuanced and rigorous, drawing on history, logic and the latest economic data, he manages to convey it in simple, powerful prose that any reader can follow….a much-needed addendum to [Adam] Smith’s famous formulation.”
Robert Kuttner - The American Prospect
“Simply the best recent treatment of the globalization dilemma that I've read, by an economist or anyone else….He gives us nothing less than a general theory of globalization, development, democracy, and the state. The book provides the pleasure of following a thoughtful, critical mind working through a complex puzzle. Rodrik writes in highly friendly and nontechnical prose, blending a wide-ranging knowledge of economic history and politics and a gentle, occasionally incredulous, skepticism about the narrow and distorting lens of his fellow economists.”
Kirkus Reviews

An economist's idealistic proposal to take some of the global out of globalization.

In the wake of the subprime-mortgage crisis and worldwide economic downturn, most readers will agree with the author's premise that globalization, and in particular financial globalization, is not all it's cracked up to be. Rodrik (International Political Economy/Harvard Univ.; One Economics, Many Recipes: Globalization, Institutions, and Economic Growth, 2007, etc.) submits that there's a better way of doing business, one that coalesces as he presents his theory that the world economy boils down to a triangular game of give-and-take. The author defines three key elements of the world economy—hyperglobalization (unfettered trade and financial exchange), democracy and the nation state—that he contends cannot all simultaneously coexist. However, he writes, we should aim for two out of three. Rodrik argues that the least important element in terms of the world's economic, social and political health is globalization itself, noting that economic models predict only minimal net gain from the continued lowering of international barriers. He suggests furthering worldwide democratization and strengthening, not weakening, governmental intervention to provide an effective framework that preserves local values and protects domestic economies while paving the way for relatively—but not completely—free economic and financial interaction. His arguments are often effective, if occasionally overly simplistic, though at times it's difficult to pinpoint his audience. He acknowledges that any economist worth his salt is fully cognizant of the perils of globalization, which often ignored in public forums, yet his economic arguments may sail over the heads of lay readers despite attempts to simplify the concepts. A trite closing parable, rather than reinforcing his salient points, simply underscores how messy and complicated reality is in comparison to even the most elegant proposed solutions.

Not an ideal blueprint, but Rodrik raises—and gamely tries to answer—some important questions.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393341287
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/5/2012
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 685,853
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Dani Rodrik is the Rafiq Hariri Professor of International Political Economy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Recasting Globalization's Narrative ix

1 Of Markets and States: Globalization in History's Mirror 3

2 The Rise and Fall of the First Great Globalization 24

3 Why Doesn't Everyone Get the Case for Free Trade? 47

4 Bretton Woods, GATT, and the WTO: Trade in a Politicized World 67

5 Financial Globalization Follies 89

6 The Foxes and hedgehogs of Finance 112

7 Poor Countries in a Rich World 135

8 Trade Fundamentalism in the Tropics 159

9 The Political Trilemma of the World Economy 184

10 Is Global Governance Feasible? Is It Desirable? 207

11 Designing Capitalism 3.0 233

12 A Sane Globalization 251

Afterword: A Bedtime Story for Grown-ups 281

Notes 285

Acknowledgments 319

Index 321

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