The Rise and Fall of South-East Asia
In this lively study of the turmoil in modern south-east Asia, 'Financial Times' journalist Victor Mallet argues that governments made the mistake of crowing about "Asian values" when they should have been doing more to manage the fastest industrial revolution the world has yet seen. Far from avoiding the pitfalls of modernisation experienced over the past 150 years in Europe and the US, south-east Asia has fallen into the same traps.
But the message from the inhabitants encountered by the author in the ten countries of the region is not one of unalloyed gloom. Three decades of economic growth and improved education have spawned a middle class determined to overcome the financial crisis, and build democracy and justice in a part of the world still better known for brashness and brutality.