After the Cataclysm
The second volume of The Political Economy of Human Rights remains one of the most controversial works produced by Chomsky to date. In a much discussed chapter on Cambodia, Chomsky and Herman questioned official Western narratives on the Khmer Rouge and suggested that the evidence available did not match up to the assertions being made at that time. These claims would resurface in a recent controversy with the Continental philosopher Slavoj Zizek and readers will now be able to judge for themselves the veracity of Zizek's claims. The work also contains important analysis of Western interventions across Indochina, including Vietnam and Laos, and provides a searing critique of American imperial aspirations in the region.
About the authors
Noam Chomsky was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on December 7, 1928. Son of a Russian emigrant who was a Hebrew scholar, Chomsky was exposed at a young age to the study of language and principles of grammar. During the 1940s, he began developing socialist political leanings through his encounters with the New York Jewish intellectual community. Chomsky received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, where he studied linguistics, mathematics, and philosophy. He conducted much of his research at Harvard University. In 1955, he began teaching at MIT, eventually holding the Ferrari P. Ward Chair of Modern Language and Linguistics. Today Chomsky is highly regarded as both one of America's most prominent linguists and most notorious social critics and political activists. His academic reputation began with the publication of Syntactic Structures in 1957. Within a decade, he became known as an outspoken intellectual opponent of the Vietnam War. Chomsky has written many books on the links between language, human creativity, and intelligence, including Language and Mind (1967) and Knowledge of Language: Its Nature, Origin, and Use (1985). He also has written dozens of political analyses, including Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media (1988), Chronicles of Dissent (1992), and The Prosperous Few and the Restless Many (1993).
Edward S. Herman is Professor of Finance at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Among his books are Corporate Control, Corporate Power & The Real Terror Network: Terrorism in Fact & Propaganda.
Auhtor Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman
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