I really want to like the project established in the intro, but if there's one thing I've taken away from this class, it's an extreme distrust for any sort of Economic theory
I was not particularly interested until the direct account of the workers in the Chinese shower-curtain factory. There is something about a fairly well fleshed out picture of a face that is very compelling. Also, I'd hear his more is not better argument before. He was very explicit about his goals in the intro. He says "I want to deal with - the reality of what our world can provide, the reality of what we actually want" I'm wondering if he's gunna pull a Davis on us, or if he's gunna complete his mission.
I'm liking it, even if he brags about his fancy roof and hybrid car!
While I can see how the anecdotal story of the Chinese girl in the shower-curtain factory might provide an engaging portrait that makes for a compelling argument, I also was a little irritated by this story. Although I appreciate McKibben's intention, I thought the story (or maybe his writing/fashioning of the story) was a little trite. I was also annoyed when he made a John Perkins-esque move by inscribing himself and his "do-good" actions into the narrative. I mean, its great that he gave the little girl the largest stuffed dog available, but is that bit of detail necessary and does it enhance his argument? Or is it solely an ethos move, in which he is asking for recognition and a pat on the back? Anyway, maybe I'm being too critical... but I was definitely peeved with his treatment of that story, as well as with his writing style.Having said that, I must admit that I am enjoying reading Deep Economy. Although I am not especially impressed with McKibben's writing in this book, I think that he is mobilizing an interesting, provocative argument. However, I remember liking his article "Reversal of Fortune" from the green rhetoric class better. But then again, I am only 80 pages into the book right now, so we will see if my impression changes...
It's a fine line that he walks. It is tough to use anecdotal evidence and avoid exoticizing or making of an "other". I was not too bothered by his first account of the girl, although I do see where you would assume he was giving himself a pat on the back Tess. However, his account of the "rabbit king" was bothersome to me. He made a complete caricature of the man, which was moderately entertaining, but took away from the believability of the alternative lifestyle he represented. Which undermines McKibbens larger argument.
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