Enough Why the World's Poorest Starve in an Age of Plenty By Roger Thurow and Scott Kilman
Read How You Want, (2010)
EasyRead Large Print, set in 16 point Verdana Type
(Originally Published in Standard Print by Public Affairs Press)
Genre: Current Events, Health, History
Reviewed by Harry S. Chou - June 7, 2010
In the 1960's Dr. Paul R. Ehrlich's book The Population Bomb stunned the world with his predication that the humans would soon exhaust their ability to feed an every burgeoning population. Thankfully, new technological developments and farming techniques have helped keep Ehrlich's predictions from coming true - at least for now. However, a new problem has emerged. While these new advances have lead to an agricultural revolution that has given us the ability to produce enough food to feed the entire world, famine and starvation are two specters that still haunt the world's poor, especially in Africa.
In Enough: Why the World's Poorest Starve in an Age of Plenty, Roger Thurow and Scott Kilman, journalists with The Wall Street Journal who have written extensively on the subject of world hunger ably explain the disparity that exists between those countries where food is plentiful, and those where famine is an ever present threat. With clarity and perspicacity, Thurow and Kilman explain the current situation in Africa, by first providing an overview of the various events that contributed to the situation the world is facing today - a grim situation wherein approximately 25,000 people in the developing nations die each day from starvation while in the developed world untold die of complications associated with obesity!
In areas where food is plentiful, it is easy to forget that starvation is still a major killer. It is also hard to understand how someone starving to death "over there" is really all that important to the day to day life of someone who has never known hunger - granted the pictures of starving children might make you feel a little guilty as your slurp on your milkshake and unbuckle your pants so you can eat just a little more. In fact, your guilt may prompt you to make a donation to a charity that helps to feed the world's starving. But have you ever wondered why there is anyone in the world starving to death when food is so plentiful? If so, please, please read this book. It might just be the most important book that you read. The authors concisely outline not only the historic events that have led to the current situation, but also how the Green Revolution helped stem the tide of starvation, at least for a few decades. They also illustrate that while these events might be taking place "over there" they can have a direct impact on your own, comfortable life. Mass starvation tends to lead to large population shifts as the hungry migrate in search of food. This can lead to ethnic and political unrest. Starving individuals act as disease reserves as their weakened bodies fall prey to every ill that crosses their path. Worse, even when medicines are available to treat these illnesses, they are often ineffective on starving bodies. For instance antiviral drugs used to treat AIDS actually worsen a sufferer's condition if they are not taken with adequate amounts of food. Civil unrest, epidemics, and the resulting chaos can quickly spread across borders and before you know it, something that started "over there" is having a direct and negative impact on your own life!
While you may well find this book terribly upsetting - all is not gloom and doom. In addition to illustrating the problem, Thurow and Kilman also offer solutions. They point out how monetary inadequacies, political differences, misguided donor and aid efforts can be corrected and how we can, with relative ease, ensure that no one ever goes to bed hungry again -and more important, that no one is allowed to die of starvation when enough food is currently being grown to feed all! I highly recommend this book, if you have never thought of yourself as an activist before, you may well find yourself taking an active role in helping correct this horrific problem after reading this eye-opening and well-written treatise on world hunger and why terms like starvation, famine, and world hunger should have long been consigned to the realm of antiquated terms!
Enough is available from Read How You Want, an on-demand publisher that makes books available in a variety of formats including Braille, DAISY, and five different large print formats. This range of formats makes this, and other books, available not only to visually impaired individuals, but also anyone with a reading or physical disability that makes reading standard print books difficult.
Fast Food Nation, by Eric Schlosser.
In Fast Food Nation, Eric Schlosser offers the reader an eye opening look at how America was transformed into a nation of fast food restaurants and boilerplate shopping centers. Most important, he details the impact that this homogenization has had on the country, not just in regard to the store fronts, but also how it has affected every aspect of our lives from how our food is grown to how our children are exploited as a source of cheap labor.
Affluenza: When Too Much is Never Enough, by Clive Hamilton and Richard Denniss.
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