An investigative journey though the anti-globalisation movement
’It’s as if Alex Garland has taken Naomi Klein on holiday – part visionary, part historian, [Kingsnorth’s] voice is accessible, impassioned and persuasive.’ – Esquire
One No, Many Yeses was written at the height of the first wave of uprisings against ‘globalisation’ – the ongoing process by which the needs and wants of culture and nature are subjugated to the needs and wants of business. It was written in 2000 and 2001, when Naomi Klein’s No Logo was the talk of the town, the Zapatista uprising in Mexico was a still making waves, and every summit meeting held by major governments was met by legions of angry protesters, determined to reject the money-uber-alles culture of capitalism, insisting instead that ‘another world is possible.’
I spent nine months travelling the globe, investigating the roots and the politics of this growing global movement. I spent time in rebel Zapatista villages in Mexico, visited anarchists in the USA, got tear-gassed at the Genoa street protests in Italy, infiltrated the world’s biggest gold mine in West Papua, lived with landless squatters in Brazil and then came back home to write about where it all connected up and where it might lead
For a while it looked like all of this might change the world, quickly and seriously. It didn’t quite turn out like that – in the end, we had to wait another decade for globalisation to hit the buffers under its own steam. But the movements that this book catalogues are in many cases still out there, and we’re now seeing a resurgence of uprisings against the same system. My first book, now eight years old, is starting to look like a work of history now, but I still get emails about it. It’s even on university syllabuses. There are plenty of books out there about capitalism, injustice and how to save the world, but there isn’t, I don’t think, another book like this: a piece of campaigning journalism which gets down and dirty with the people and the places at the root of that remarkable period of history.