Fences and Windows Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Globalization Debate

Naomi Klein

Picador

0312307993

9780312307998

Trade Paperback

304 Pages

$18.00

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In Fences and Windows, Klein, author of the internationally bestselling No Logo, gives readers a backstage pass to the global revolt against corporate power—from the Seattle World Trade Organization protests in 1999 through the crackdown on dissent post-September 11th, 2001.

Bringing together columns, speeches, essays and front-line reportage, Klein builds a case that globalization has not been about taking barriers down, but about putting new fences up—turning borders into militarized zones, governments into gated communities, and putting virtually all of the planet's wealth under patent. In the face of these fences, Klein argues, a global network of activists has launched a liberation movement, one intent on opening up windows, spaces for non-corporate culture, independent media, and most of all, for meaningful democracy. This important collection reminds us how and why, as The New York Times noted, "Ms. Klein incarnates [her] generation's invention of the North American left."

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Praise for Fences and Windows

"The irony of the media-imposed label 'anti-globalization' is that we in this movement have been turning globalization into a lived reality, perhaps more than even the most multinational of corporate executives, or the most restless of jet-setters . . . Like others who found themselves in this global web, I arrived equipped only with a limited understanding of neo-liberal economics but like so many others, I have been globalized by this movement: I have learned what the market obsession has meant to landless farmers in Brazil, to teachers in Argentina, to fast-food workers in Italy, to coffee growers in Mexico, to shanty-town dwellers in South Africa, to telemarketers in France, to migrant tomato pickers in Florida, to union organizers in the Philippines, to homeless kids in Toronto. In a way, this collection is the record of my own steep learning curve."—From the author's Preface to this book

"Klein has become one of the antiglobalization movement's primary translators, rendering complex economic issues in accessible language . . . In Fences and Windows she reframes the protests as something more joyful (and much less threatening) than the media images of broken McDonald's windows suggested—as 'an alternative global city where urgency replaces resignation . . . and the prospect of political change does not seem like an odd and anachronistic idea but the most logical thought in the world.'"—Joy Press, The Village Voice

"As Klein notes in her preface, this book is more a stopgap than a follow-up. Covering the period of late 1999 to 2002, the book collects Klein's in-the-trenches journalism about sweatshops, genetically modified foods, evolving police tactics for crowd control and more. The two title images recur throughout: the fences are real, steel cages keeping protesters from interfering with summits, but they are also metaphorical, such as the 'fence' of poverty that prevents the poor from receiving adequate education or health care. Klein argues that globalization has only delivered its promised benefits to the world's wealthiest citizens and that its emphasis on privatization has eroded the availability of public services around the globe. Critics have suggested that the 'anti-globalization' movement (a term loathed, Klein notes, by many people actually involved) lacks a cohesive structure, but Klein generally sees this decentralization as a strength, likening the small groups' 'hub and spoke' organization to that of linked Web sites. While Klein offers snapshots of success stories involving Nike, Starbucks and other corporate monoliths, she wisely does not suggest any easy solutions to this complex mesh of problems. Despite post-September 11 talk to the contrary, these dispatches indicate that the movement is far from over."—Publishers Weekly

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Naomi Klein is an award-winning journalist and an internationally syndicated columnist for the Globe and Mail (Canada) and the Guardian (UK). She was named one of Ms Magazine's Women of the Year in 2001 and declared by the Times (London) to be "probably the most influential person under the age of 35 in the world." A frequent media commentator, she has guest lectured at Harvard, Yale, and London School of Economics.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Naomi Klein

  • Naomi Klein is an award-winning journalist and an internationally syndicated columnist for the Globe and Mail (Canada) and the Guardian (UK). She was named one of Ms Magazine's Women of the Year in 2001 and declared by the Times (London) to be "probably the most influential person under the age of 35 in the world." A frequent media commentator, she has guest lectured at Harvard, Yale, and The London School of Economics.
  • Naomi Klein
    Naomi Klein
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