Ugly American

Ugly American

3.99 (3,109 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
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Product details

  • Paperback | 192 pages
  • 165.1 x 276.86 x 25.4mm | 272.15g
  • Random House Children's Publishers UK
  • Corgi Childrens
  • London, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 0552073202
  • 9780552073202

Review Text

Neither Lederer's All the Ship's At Sea and Ensign O'T?? and Me nor Burdick's The Ninth Wave will prepare readers for this powerful and absorbing indictment- through the medium of fiction-of America's role in Southeast Asia. This is a courageous book for the Book of the Month to use as one in a double selection (the other being Vailland's The Law), for it says a great deal that will be unpalatable and unwelcome to those who would like to think that our diplomatic status in unimpeachable, our economic approach a generous one and our political knowhow a valuable guide to the primitive peoples of the Asiatic continent. I found myself spellbound and wholly convinced. Here are people seeking to set themselves apart, confident that they can learn nothing from the "natives", sure that their high cost of living standard is admirable, that the cocktail parties and social fanfare are all the visiting VIP's need; here are well- intentioned people making disastrous mistakes; here is apathy towards the need of direct communication, of learning the language of a country, of listening to the few who recognize the importance of approaching the vast need by the small paths of rural and village understanding. A Catholic priest wages a courageous and lonely battle and wins a victory against Communism. An agriculturist seeks to teach the farmers how to improve their poultry production. An economist, attempts to introduce milk as a staple in diet. And always, their progress is stopped by top brass who accept as fact the need for basic highways, big machinery, high level communication- who close their eyes to the success of the "backward" Communist methods- political, social, military- until it is too late. All of the stories are based on fact. Most of the characters are drawn from life. Every situation has its parallel. Here is a book that should be required reading in Washington and elsewhere! (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

3,109 ratings
3.99 out of 5 stars
5 32% (994)
4 41% (1,260)
3 23% (711)
2 4% (124)
1 1% (20)
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