This volume offers readers a concise and accessible introduction to the ideas of Noam Chomsky, described by the New York Times as “arguably the most important intellectual alive.”
In these recent, wide-ranging interviews, conducted for Truthout by C. J. Polychroniou, Chomsky discusses his views on the “war on terror” and the rise of neoliberalism, the refugee crisis and cracks in the European Union, prospects for a just peace in Israel/Palestine, the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement, the dysfunctional US electoral system, the grave danger posed to humanity by the climate crisis, and the hopes, prospects, and challenges of building a movement for radical change.
“In this brilliant series of recent and wide-ranging interviews, Noam Chomsky combines an astounding breadth of knowledge, great depth of insight, clarity in explaining his ideas, and a relentless commitment to social and economic justice. The full package is simply exhilarating, especially in our current dismal era of Donald Trump. Optimism over Despair is a book to devour.”—Robert Pollin, Distinguished Professor of Economics and Co-Director, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
“…Chomsky argues that the choice between optimism and despair is really no choice at all. I have a great admiration for Chomsky’s combination of consistent critical moral perspective and sharp eye for the details of world politics…”—Heikki Patomäki, professor of world politics at the University of Helsinki, and a civic and political activist"In this series of highly informative conversations deftly oragnized by CJ Polychroniou, Noam Chomsky teaches us - yet again - so much on a huge range of issues - from economic globalisation through international politics to the linguistic foundations of humanity. If you haven't read Chomsky before, this book will open your eyes. Even if you have, reading this book will make you realise that you still have more eyes to be opened. This book is a beacon - or, rather a GPS - in this turbulent and darkening world."—Ha-Joon Chang, University of Cambridge, author of Bad Samaritans, 23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism and Economics: The User's Guide
"For all those of us who have always dreamed of spending a day with Noam Chomsky and getting his answers to all our questions and concerns about the (sorry) state of the world, here's the next best thing: a collection of interviews with our greatest living intellectual on capitalism, empire, and social change, fielded by C. J. Polychroniou of Truthout. Especially valuable in helping us navigate the dreadful challenges of the Trumpian era."—Michael Klare, Professor of Peace & World Security Studies, Hampshire College and Defense Correspondent, The Nation
“This fascinating series of interviews convincingly covers an astonishing range of fundamental and urgent issues of societal concern, demonstrating anew that Noam Chomsky is the world’s most humane, philosophically sophisticated, and knowledgeable public intellectual. I cannot imagine a better primer for anyone seeking a better, safer, fairer future.” —Richard Falk, Professor of International Law Emeritus, Princeton University