Sch-Pacific Shift

William Irwin Thompson, Author Random House (NY) $15.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-87156-750-5
Our cultural center of gravity, argues Thompson, has shifted from the Atlantic to the Pacific Basin. In that emerging culture, cooperation counts more than consumerism, and politics is rooted in bioregion and community instead of warring parties or nation-states. The growth of the computer and electronics industries in the area encompassing Los Angeles and Tokyo heralds the birth of a planetary information network. Thompson (At the Edge of History, etc.) credits Ronald Reagan for solidifying the shift ""from New York to Los Angeles, from steel mills to Star Wars.'' But Reagan, who is ``the shadow of Walt Disney,'' serves as living proof that presidents merely act out roles, and a new political ecosystem must be the work of countless individuals. Aided by diagrams illustrating mythic dualisms (charisma/routine, order/entropy), Thompson maps out a world dominated by Russia and China (``the great conservatives''), America and Western Europe (``the great liberals'') and the ``radical upstarts,'' the OPEC nations. Portentous writing and New Age slogans mask fuzzy thinking. (April 7)
Reviewed on: 03/04/1986
Release date: 03/01/1986
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