Helmut Schmidt: THE POWERS OF THE FUTURE. Siedler Verlag (Hardcover, Society & culture, Social & ethical issues, Politics & Society)


Winners and Losers in Tomorrow’s World

Original Title: Die Mächte der Zukunft

original edition

Hardcover, Linen with jacket, 240 pages, 13.5 x 21.5 cm, 5.3 x 8.5 in.
ISBN: 978-3-88680-817-5
€ 19.90 [D] | € 20.50 [A] | CHF 28.90 * (* rec. retail price) recommended retail price

Publishing House: Siedler

Date of publication: September 21, 2004
This title is available.



Rights sold to: Bulgaria (Mediatama), Italy (Fazi), Japan (Asahi Shinbun), Korea (Kavin Media Publishing), Saudi-Arabia (Nafaes al-Uloum), Spain*

*rights available again



Our world is fundamentally different from that of the twentieth century, with its two world wars and the conflict between east and west. But where are the changes? Which facts give rise to prognoses? What can we know about the future – and what remains uncertain? What can we do – and what should we do? If we want to understand the global dimensions of the problems to be dealt with, we firstly have to break down the eurocentric view of things.

Helmut Schmidt thus describes the interests, concerns and hopes of the influential centres of world politics from a variety of perspectives. His analysis compares the interests of Washington, Moscow and Peking with those of the Islamic world, Black Africa and India. He devotes particular attention to the conflict between the USA and the Islamic world – a confrontation that started long before September 11th, and whose blazing source is essentially the situation in Palestine.

The author also directs his attention to developments in European integration. Since Maastricht and the agreement to introduce a common currency, those in charge in Paris, Berlin and elsewhere have not done enough to bring about a unified continent. A Europe that is in no position to bundle all its interests together and to represent them with one strong voice finds itself facing an America in which imperialism and missionary fervour join together to form one unholy alliance. Will European unity last? Was the Iraq war the beginning of the end of American unilateralism? Is this desirable? Is this probable? How could things develop – and how should they develop?

In his book, Helmut Schmidt describes first and foremost a worst case scenario; he delivers a dark prognosis based on the current world situation. But he also casts a more optimistic light on our future, which takes account of the alternatives he proposes here. The author spent a good deal of time on the ground-work for this book. In 2003 he spent prolonged periods in the USA and China, where he discussed the themes analysed here with the politicians responsible for those particular areas. His portrayals are, moreover, based on current statistical and political data.


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