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Prisoners of Geography

Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need to Know About Global Politics
Narrated by: Ric Jerom
Length: 10 hrs and 29 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (2,532 ratings)

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Summary

All leaders are constrained by geography. Their choices are limited by mountains, rivers, seas and concrete. Yes, to follow world events you need to understand people, ideas and movements - but if you don't know geography, you'll never have the full picture.

If you've ever wondered why Putin is so obsessed with Crimea, why the USA was destined to become a global superpower or why China's power base continues to expand ever outwards, the answers are all here. In 10 chapters (covering Russia, China, the USA, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, India and Pakistan, Europe, Japan and Korea, and the Arctic), using essays and occasionally the personal experiences of the widely travelled author, Prisoners of Geography looks at the past, present and future to offer an essential insight into one of the major factors that determines world history. It's time to put the 'geo' back into geopolitics.

©2016 Tim Marshall (P)2017 Audible, Ltd.

What members say

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An interesting and thought-provoking approach

I had wondered if a book based on maps might be unsuitable as an audio book, however, the author guides one to imagine the geography being described. I had realized that some events in history were shaped by geography, but not how all pervasive the influence of mountains, rivers, deserts and seas are on history as well as the legacy of colonialism creating artificial countries without regard to topography, racial groups and religious differences. When it’s pointed out it seems obvious.

I enjoyed the book but was left feeling down-hearted about the future of the planet owing to over-population and climate change combining with the geography of the countries that will be most affected. There certainly seems to be potential for yet more conflicts between countries competing over diminishing resources and vying for influence in the world.

The narrator is excellent.

20 of 20 people found this review helpful

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Step back and look at politics through a new lens

I have a feeling this will be a book I listen to again at least once. It offers physical geography as a lens through which to understand many aspects of both historical and modern world affairs and makes a pretty convincing case. I particularly enjoyed the chapters on Russia and China which offered far more balanced stories than I often read.

61 of 63 people found this review helpful

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interesting

interesting take on global politics. Great for someone like myself who have buried their heads in the sand and ignored politics for several years

25 of 27 people found this review helpful

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Deeply fascinating and enlightening

This book opened my mind to a totally new description of the world, her geography and her politics. It challenged my current perception of humanity, power and resources. The narration of the book was excellent. Love to read more on geopolitics.

23 of 25 people found this review helpful

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Fascinating

Eye - opening view of the history of the world from the perspective of geography. Timely in the digital age.

14 of 15 people found this review helpful

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Insightful

Fantastic. Really helps to understand the conflicts of the world and to give some 'alternative' understanding to the conspiracy theories. From religion, geography, ethnicity and mistrust bringing together our history and most likely our future.

Isn't it a shame we can't just share :)

21 of 23 people found this review helpful

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Very informative

Interesting and well read. It is also updated to current times. Sometimes a little too much detail but overall worth listening to.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

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good recap on what most of us already know.

Some good facts and figures thrown in too.

The narrator keeps things moving along nicely.

Not too sure about the Russian accent though. . . .

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Just enthralling, beginning to end!

I listened to the whole thing in a 48 hour time frame. It was fascinating!

17 of 19 people found this review helpful

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Excellent look at the connection between geography and politics

Part geography- there was a lot I didn’t know about our planet
Part politics - there was a lot I didn’t know about global politics
Part psychology - I’m a psychologist so I’ll stop there...

This is a brilliant and very accessible book that will get you up to date on why the world and its people are in the state it is. I feel ‘educated’.
Fully and highly recommended

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • lia manesi, corfu, greece
  • 25-10-17

Brilliant insight and narration

One of the most enjoyable audible narrators.
The book is both a good and easy read. It links well known global historical facts to world geography that explain world politics of today. I highly recommend for readers who are not majorly involved in politics, but would like to start understanding them.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 08-05-19

Disappointed

I read the chapters on Russia and China with earnest and thought wow! I've learn quite a few things here. Then I skipped to the chapter on Africa and immediately changed my view. Like sooo many other writers on Africa, the continent is described with one overriding narrative: a war torn, conflict stricken land. Africa is AND the about the civil war in the DRC and previous fighting in Angola, Rwanda and Burundi. There is more to African economies than South Africa. For me, the limited scope in the one chapter on Africa was a strong indication of the flawed views the writer took in all the other chapters, so I stopped listening after that. Disappointed.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Bennett Faurie
  • 19-10-18

Great narrating

Ric Jerome placed much enthasis on the correct local pronunciation of all the different locations.