The Eagle's Shadow by Mark Hertsgaard
Why America Fascinates And Infuriates The World

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Synopsis

What America looks like to the rest of the world


Americans rarely used to think about the outside world. As the mightiest nation in history, the United States could do as it pleased. Now Americans have learned the hard way that what outsiders think matters. When terror struck last September 11, author Mark Hertsgaard was completing a trip around the world, gathering perceptions about America from people in fifteen countries. Whether sophisticated business leaders, starry-eyed teenagers, or Islamic fundamentalists, his subjects felt both admiring and uneasy about the United States, enchanted yet bewildered, appalled yet envious.


This complex catalogue of impressions--good, bad, but never indifferent--is the departure point for a short, pointed essay in the tradition of Common Sense and The Fate of the Earth. How can the world's most open society be so proud of its founding ideals yet so inconsistent in applying them? So loved for its pop culture but so resented for its high-handedness? Exploring such paradoxes, Hertsgaard exposes uplifting and uncomfortable truths that force natives and outsiders alike to see America with fresh eyes.


"Like it or not, America is the future," a European tells Hertsgaard. In a world growing more American by the day, The Eagle's Shadow is a major statement about and to the place everyone discusses but few understand.

 

About Mark Hertsgaard

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Mark Hertsgaard is the author of three previous books, in-cluding On Bended Knee: The Press and the Reagan Presidency and A Day in the Life: The Music and Artistry of the Beatles. He has contributed to the New York Times, The New Yorker, the Atlantic Monthly, Outside, Vanity Fair, the Nation, and numerous other publications at home and abroad. He teaches nonfiction writing at Johns Hopkins University and lives near Washington, D. C.
 
Published September 1, 2003 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 259 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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A verbal thrashing from a journalist who visited many countries and discovered that even as they adopt our pop culture and consume our Big Macs, they hate us for our greed, arrogance, ignorance, and more.

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The Guardian

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The Eagle's Shadow: Why America Fascinates and Infuriates the World by Mark Hertsgaard 244pp, Bloomsbury, £12.99 Nine years ago, when I was a student at Berkeley, I went to a weekend organised for Fulbright scholars, the non-American equivalent of Rhodes scholars.

Sep 21 2002 | Read Full Review of The Eagle's Shadow: Why Ameri...

Publishers Weekly

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In May 2001, Hertsgaard (Earth Odyssey: Around the World in Search of Our Environmental Future) began a six-month journey through 15 countries to interview people of all sorts, from bus drivers to former parliamentarians, about one thing: the United States.

Sep 23 2002 | Read Full Review of The Eagle's Shadow: Why Ameri...

The Best Reviews

Additionally, the author focuses on reactions to America, failing to note the corollary question as to why do people infuriate other people enough to commit genocide?

Dec 14 2002 | Read Full Review of The Eagle's Shadow: Why Ameri...

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