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GLOBAL ISSUES IN LANGUAGE
EDUCATION NEWSLETTER
June 1996 - Issue No. #23

Global Issue Books for your Summer Reading

Here are a few books to take away for your summer holiday reading.

If You Love This Planet: A Plan to Heal the Earth

by Helen Caldicott, MD (1992)

WW Norton, New York

This powerful book was written by Helen Caldicott, an internationally acclaimed Australian physician, anti-nuclear activist and co-founder of "Physicians for Social Responsibility". It has a simple theme - our planet is desperately ill and must be healed. Caldicott, a doctor by training, describes the problems (the greenhouse effect, ozone destruction, deforestation, species extinction, toxic pollution, nuclear waste...) and points to the causes (public apathy, corporate greed and cynical politicians). She also gives cause for hope and a prescription for cure - a prescription she sums up as "love, learn, live, legislate". We need, she says, to learn energy efficiency, to organize politically, to hold corporations and governments accountable, and to develop a greater love for the Earth. Says activist actress Meryl Streep, "Helen Caldicott has been my inspiration to speak out."


Talking Peace: A Vision for the Next Generation

by Jimmy Carter (1993)

Dutton Children's Books: New York

This is the first book by a former US president to address young readers about the critical issues of our time - world peace, democracy, development and human rights. In it, Jimmy Carter draws upon his experience monitoring elections in Latin America, mediating peace in the Middle East, and fighting famine and disease in Africa to examine the causes of world problems and explain the need for nonviolent conflict resolution in the world today. The book's chapters touch on such topics as war and peace, basic needs such as food and shelter, environmental protection, democracy and children's rights, and a final chapter on "What You Can Do". The book challenges readers to consider Carter's message that all people - regardless of age, race, gender or nationality - share common needs, common rights, a common dignity and a common quest: the pursuit of peace.


A Better World for Our Children

by Dr. Benjamin Spock, MD (1994)

National Press Books: Bethesda, MD, USA

This book summarizes a lifetime of thought by world-famous child-care expert, Dr. Benjamin Spock. Now 93 years old, Spock has had a unique life - gold medal winner in the 1924 Olympics, pioneering children's doctor, best-selling author and a social activist who has worked for nuclear disarmament, spoken out against war and been jailed for civil disobedience. In this book, he outlines the social problems facing American society (excessive competition, materialism, marital breakdown, drugs, violence, health) and calls for social reforms in education, the family and society which will promote positive values and a better future. In particular, he stresses that we must break the cycle of apathy by getting more involved in politics, volunteering and citizen activism so as to create good role models for the next generation and thus ensure a better world for our children.


The Global Citizen

by Donella Meadows (1991)

http://www.islandpress.org/" target=0>Island Press: Washington, DC

This book explores the meaning of the concept "global citizenship" as seen from the perspective of Donella Meadows - a systems analyst, organic farmer, co-author of the book "The Limits to Growth" and professor of environmental studies. The book consists of a series of stimulating essays on global issues from her weekly newspaper column "The Global Citizen". Topics covered include issues such as population, abortion, poverty, development, energy, garbage, leadership and action. The style of her approach and the flavor of her ideas can be gained from sample essay titles such as The State Of The World (In Two Pages), Trivial Pursuits for Global Citizens, The 10 Best Nations In The World, What Would The World Be Like If There Were No Hunger, Do You Know Where Your Garbage is Tonight? and Should We Be Glad When The GNP Goes Up? An excellent book on global awareness and social responsibility.

*****

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Kip A. Cates, Tottori University, Koyama, Tottori City, JAPAN 680-8551
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