NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer

REVIEW The Ugly American

The Ugly American

READ ô The Ugly American William J. Lederer ð 1 READ REVIEW The Ugly American The multi million copy bestseller that coined the phrase for tragic American blunders abroadFirst published in 1958 The Ugly American became a runaway national bestseller for its slashing expose of American arrogance incompetence and corruption in Southeast Asia Based on fact the book's eye opening stories and sketches drew a devastating p. I first encountered this book as part of an undergraduate political science class on American politics Among other long and dry reading assignments I found myself thoroughly engaged in the book and looking forward to spending time reading Lederer and Burdick s work In fact I d have to say that it has been my favorite book since that political science class almost 25 years agoI have read it at least 20 times in those 25 years often as a source for a paper I was writing but also for pleasure While this is not a typical beach read I have re read it while traveling and at the beach on several occasions This past week I was on a business trip and sleeping in a hotel room This combination of factors is usually good for a bout of insomnia on my part and this trip was no different Lederer and Burdick came to my rescue yet again and provided a thoroughly enjoyable way to pass through several hours of insomniaThe storyies centers on a fictional country in Southeast Asia named Sarkhan The book s chapters compare and contrast the competence and incompetence on the part of the diplomats politicos military officers and ex pats in Sarkham Heroes include Ambassador Gilbert McWhite John Colvin and Homer Atkins THE ugly American all men who took the time to learn the culture in which they were being plantedIt is easy now with 2020 hindsight to see this book as a parable stemming from the Vietnam War However the book was written well before American stepped up its involvement in Vietnam in 1958 and was purportedly read by President Eisenhower and responsible for many of the reforms that he introduced into America s foreign aid programs The general thesis of the authors was that US diplomats and other foreign station workersadvisors who failed to study and adapt to the cultures they were entering were doomed to failure or worse Worse still the American bureaucracy wasn t interested in the opinions of the Foreign Service staff that did study and understand the cultures into which they were placedGiven that this book was written at the tail end of the McCarthy era the insights of Lederer and Burdick are uite exceptional in fact some government agencies sought to ban the book in Asia and in many ways that failed effort can be seen as one of the last scenes of the McCarthy era Burdick and Lederer are at once tongue in cheek cynical and satirical in their views of American foreign policyEvery time that I read this book I can t put it down Despite its age it is still a fine read and certainly has additional significance in today s world as the US fights wars in Ira and Afghanistan Although some parts of the book are antiuated including the parochial way the authors treat the few female characters in particular the Marie MacIntosh character that small niggle can be forgiven in a book that retains its readability and relevance 50 years after it was first published

FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer

READ ô The Ugly American William J. Lederer ð 1 READ REVIEW The Ugly American Icture of how the United States was losing the struggle with Communism in Asia Combining gripping storytelling with an urgent call to action the book prompted President Eisenhower to launch a study of our military aid program that led the way to much needed reformPowerful and absorbing Should be reuired reading in Washington Kirkus Reviews. Again and again while reading this book I found myself flipping to the copyright page to check the publication date 1958 How it is possible that something so pressing and relevant to contemporary America appeared over 50 years agoFrom 1958 to 2014 few things it seems have changedThe Ugly American is a tale of American foreign policy gone wrong It s a series of vignettes about dumb and dumber statesmen who are propped up in relative luxury overseas inadvertently causing massive harm to smaller and weaker countries Its fictional though based on real life characters can be neatly classified into two categories those who are idiots and those who are notAmong the idiots are Joe Bing a public relations man who manages to recruit all of the wrong type of people into duty overseas He waxed lyrical about the conditions one can expect a description that caused me to uncomfortably remember the 3 years I spent in Okinawa Japan when I was a kid Foreign affairs is a big business and it s important business You all know that Now maybe I can tell you a few things about working abroad for Uncle Sammy that you won t read in the handouts After all even when you re doing big work and important work you still have to relax and I know you d like to know about the informal side of living and working abroadYou ll have to work among foreigners but we don t expect you to love em just because you work among em I don t care where you work for Uncle Sammy you ll be living with a gang of clean cut AmericansYou can buy the same food in Asia that you can in PeoriaWhen you live overseas it s still on the high American standard 79 80So how does this measure up to my experience as a 7 10 year old kid living on Kadena Air Force Base Unfortunately it s pretty accurate I spent probably 90% of my time on the base interacting with clean cut American kids and attending an international all English speaking school I learned about a dozen phrases in Japanese that s it My family shopped at the PX and the BX and the Commissary The times we did venture off base usually on the weekends to go to the beach we considered the atmosphere exotic and treated each excursion like a vacation Now did living in Okinawa for 3 years change me as a person To some extent sure But it definitely wasn t the rich cultural immersion that it could have beenBack to the idiotsThe bulk of The Ugly American is set in the fictional Southeast Asian nation of Sarkhan a thinly veiled allusion to Vietnam The subject America s ineffective efforts to curb the spread of Russian Communism But if the idea of reading Cold War propaganda makes you sick to your stomach don t worry It s less an indictment of Communism than it is of American stupidity The book will make you groan and guffaw and wonder how we even managed to become a country in the first placeBut for each idiot the book presents there is a well meaning hardworking and intelligent foil Homer Atkins aka the Ugly American after whom the book takes its name is an engineer fluent in Sarkhanese and determined to improve the lives of the people in the country through simple effective technology Atkins is indeed ugly in the conventional sense he doesn t dress well his hands are perpetually dirty and his manner of speaking is course rather than refined This ugliness sets him apart in a world where appearance is considered important than common sense Dammit said Homer Atkins to himself as he looked around the room at the fashionably dressed men The princes of bureaucracy were the same all over the world They sat in their freshly pressed clothes ran their clean fingers over their smooth cheeks smiled knowingly at one another and asked engineers like Atkins silly uestions 205Atkins ugliness is a metaphor for many things including honesty pragmatism sincerity and discernment The bureaucrats described in the above paragraph are none of these things but are nevertheless bestowed with power than Atkins has I ve found myself in many situations where I feel I m the only person in the room with anything genuine to say and I m sure I m not the only person who s experienced this Especially when you can just watch a Ted Talk anytime a pseudo intellectual self congratulating phenomenon that never fails to make me feel nauseatedWilliam J Lederer and Eugene Burdick were smart enough to write a book that pretty much anyone can understand In terms of prose it s clear and precise with few chances for misinterpretation This helps to explain no doubt why it became a huge bestseller in the late 50searly 60s and is still a linchpin in many Political Science classrooms today I dearly wish I had read this book in high school not only would it have helped me enormously with debate I could have started to cast off the mantle of the Western centric neoliberal and semi colonialist education that I received in the American public school system much much earlierThis book flies in the face of adages accepted as common knowledge eg You can t fight an ideology I ve heard that phrase used many times to explain America s defeat in Vietnam and our long winded sashay in the Middle East We can t fight those guys they fall prey to a dangerous ideology and after that they can t be rescued Incidentally in 1958 Lederer and Burdick demonstrated that this is a flimsy excuse The fictional Father Finnian again based on a real life persona cunningly crafts an effective stratagem against Communism in BurmaAfter an exhaustive study of Communism including reading the prophecies of Lenin Stalin Engels and Marx and becoming fluent in the local language Father Finnian recruits 9 anti Communist Burmese to devise a way to demonstrate to everyone else that Communism is not in their best interests In the course of their conversations Finnian and the Burmese demonstrate why Communism is inherently anti Democratic the Communists have made all worship impossible except the worship of Stalin Lenin Mao In the areas the Communists control everyone must believe in one single thing CommunismI too am a Catholic but I do not reuire that all of us be Catholics What this means I think is that the thing we want is a country where any man can worship any god he wishes where he can live the way his heart says That I think is the final big thing 55This conversation however is ironic in the wider context of The Ugly American Americans who travel abroad and insist on replicating American lifestyles in vastly different circumstances who are convinced that traditional warfare will eventually surmount guerrilla tactics who assert that large construction projects are prestigious and useful than small everyday technological improvements who interact only with other Americans and are incapable of detecting the disdain in which they are held by foreigners and further who do all of this in the name of DEMOCRACY Well frankly that s idiocracyActual rating 455 stars Blameless in Abaddon kid Foreign affairs is a big business and it s important business You all Croatie - 9ed know that Now maybe I can tell you a few things about working abroad for Uncle Sammy that you won t read in the handouts After all even when you re doing big work and important work you still have to relax and I One Day At A Time know you d like to 41 Closets know about the informal side of living and working abroadYou ll have to work among foreigners but we don t expect you to love em just because you work among em I don t care where you work for Uncle Sammy you ll be living with a gang of clean cut AmericansYou can buy the same food in Asia that you can in PeoriaWhen you live overseas it s still on the high American standard 79 80So how does this measure up to my experience as a 7 10 year old Red Riding Hood kid living on Kadena Air Force Base Unfortunately it s pretty accurate I spent probably 90% of my time on the base interacting with clean cut American Irreparable Damage Irreparable #1 kids and attending an international all English speaking school I learned about a dozen phrases in Japanese that s it My family shopped at the PX and the BX and the Commissary The times we did venture off base usually on the weekends to go to the beach we considered the atmosphere exotic and treated each excursion like a vacation Now did living in Okinawa for 3 years change me as a person To some extent sure But it definitely wasn t the rich cultural immersion that it could have beenBack to the idiotsThe bulk of The Ugly American is set in the fictional Southeast Asian nation of Sarkhan a thinly veiled allusion to Vietnam The subject America s ineffective efforts to curb the spread of Russian Communism But if the idea of reading Cold War propaganda makes you sick to your stomach don t worry It s less an indictment of Communism than it is of American stupidity The book will make you groan and guffaw and wonder how we even managed to become a country in the first placeBut for each idiot the book presents there is a well meaning hardworking and intelligent foil Homer Atkins aka the Ugly American after whom the book takes its name is an engineer fluent in Sarkhanese and determined to improve the lives of the people in the country through simple effective technology Atkins is indeed ugly in the conventional sense he doesn t dress well his hands are perpetually dirty and his manner of speaking is course rather than refined This ugliness sets him apart in a world where appearance is considered important than common sense Dammit said Homer Atkins to himself as he looked around the room at the fashionably dressed men The princes of bureaucracy were the same all over the world They sat in their freshly pressed clothes ran their clean fingers over their smooth cheeks smiled Weathering knowingly at one another and asked engineers like Atkins silly uestions 205Atkins ugliness is a metaphor for many things including honesty pragmatism sincerity and discernment The bureaucrats described in the above paragraph are none of these things but are nevertheless bestowed with power than Atkins has I ve found myself in many situations where I feel I m the only person in the room with anything genuine to say and I m sure I m not the only person who s experienced this Especially when you can just watch a Ted Talk anytime a pseudo intellectual self congratulating phenomenon that never fails to make me feel nauseatedWilliam J Lederer and Eugene Burdick were smart enough to write a book that pretty much anyone can understand In terms of prose it s clear and precise with few chances for misinterpretation This helps to explain no doubt why it became a huge bestseller in the late 50searly 60s and is still a linchpin in many Political Science classrooms today I dearly wish I had read this book in high school not only would it have helped me enormously with debate I could have started to cast off the mantle of the Western centric neoliberal and semi colonialist education that I received in the American public school system much much earlierThis book flies in the face of adages accepted as common Poison Study knowledge eg You can t fight an ideology I ve heard that phrase used many times to explain America s defeat in Vietnam and our long winded sashay in the Middle East We can t fight those guys they fall prey to a dangerous ideology and after that they can t be rescued Incidentally in 1958 Lederer and Burdick demonstrated that this is a flimsy excuse The fictional Father Finnian again based on a real life persona cunningly crafts an effective stratagem against Communism in BurmaAfter an exhaustive study of Communism including reading the prophecies of Lenin Stalin Engels and Marx and becoming fluent in the local language Father Finnian recruits 9 anti Communist Burmese to devise a way to demonstrate to everyone else that Communism is not in their best interests In the course of their conversations Finnian and the Burmese demonstrate why Communism is inherently anti Democratic the Communists have made all worship impossible except the worship of Stalin Lenin Mao In the areas the Communists control everyone must believe in one single thing CommunismI too am a Catholic but I do not reuire that all of us be Catholics What this means I think is that the thing we want is a country where any man can worship any god he wishes where he can live the way his heart says That I think is the final big thing 55This conversation however is ironic in the wider context of The Ugly American Americans who travel abroad and insist on replicating American lifestyles in vastly different circumstances who are convinced that traditional warfare will eventually surmount guerrilla tactics who assert that large construction projects are prestigious and useful than small everyday technological improvements who interact only with other Americans and are incapable of detecting the disdain in which they are held by foreigners and further who do all of this in the name of DEMOCRACY Well frankly that s idiocracyActual rating 455 stars

William J. Lederer ð 1 READ

READ ô The Ugly American William J. Lederer ð 1 READ REVIEW The Ugly American Not only important but consistently entertaining The attack on American policy in Asia this book makes is clothed in sharp characterizations freuently humorous incident and perceptive descriptions of the countries and people where the action occurs Robert Trumbull former chief correspondent for the New York Times in China and Southeast Asi. If you ve ever heard the term ugly American used this is where it originated And if you want to understand why many folks from other countries refer to some Americans using that phrase this book will make it crystal clear why they do Excellent read


10 thoughts on “NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer

  1. says: William J. Lederer ð 1 READ NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer

    NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer I first encountered this book as part of an undergraduate political science class on American politics Among other long and dry reading assignments I found myself thoroughly engaged in the book and looking forward to spending time reading Lederer and Burdick's work In fact I'd have to say that it has been my favorite book since that politica

  2. says: NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer

    NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ I read this book in 1982 just before I joined the Peace Corps The book was important to me because it solidified the idea that we are all walking a path that is uniue and the that we are engrossed by our own path consumed by our own needs wishe

  3. says: NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer

    FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ One theory is that the book is based on an actual US ambassador to South Vietnam Ellsworth Bunker a rich businessman He never learned the language or left the compound He's only given the information that his staff thinks he ought to have

  4. says: FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ

    REVIEW The Ugly American NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ 15 starsI'm so glad this semester is almost over because my Political Science class has the worst reading curriculum This book was so drybland and the explanations were incredibly long winded I skimmed the last 70 pages for the purposes of wr

  5. says: FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer

    NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer Again and again while reading this book I found myself flipping to the copyright page to check the publication date 1958 How it is possible that something so pressing and relevant to contemporary America appeared over 50 years ago?From 1958 to 2014 few things it seems have changedThe Ugly American is a tale of American foreign policy gone wrong It’s a series of vignettes about dumb and dumber statesmen who are propped

  6. says: NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer

    NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer The Ugly American was published in 1958 as a call for change It was a blockbuster with millions of copies sold The authors wanted to alert the

  7. says: NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer

    NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer If you've ever heard the term ugly American used this is where it originated And if you want to understand why many folks from other countries refer to some Americans using that phrase this book will make it crystal clear

  8. says: NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer

    FREE READ Õ SALAMUSEO.CO ð William J. Lederer NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ The Ugly American is a story about Americans living and working in the fictional South East Asian nation of Sarkhan Written in 1958 it is a critiue of American foreign policy—specifically the work of embassies and expats abroad In this novel Lederer argues that the US is losing the tiny battles against the Soviet Union The US is too focused on dumping money into countries and building giant infrastructure projects th

  9. says: REVIEW The Ugly American NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ

    NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer Though The Ugly American was published in 1958 it rose to #6 on the bestseller list in 1959 Set in the fictional country Sar

  10. says: NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ

    REVIEW The Ugly American NEW The Ugly American ✓ William J. Lederer William J. Lederer ð 1 READ I was told that this is an American classic and that every soldier and diplomat going downrange to represent the US should read it Recently while reading another book about the French fight in Indochina and how we inherited Viet Nam from that effort I ran across the backstory on The Ugly American and decided it was time to get a copy Fifty six years after publication the book is still relevant The gist of this

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Paperback
  • 288
  • The Ugly American
  • William J. Lederer
  • English
  • 13 October 2019
  • 9780393318678