I picked this one up after reading another of Monbiot’s books, Feral. I felt totally engaged throughout Feral and wanted to read more of his work – the subject matter was a secondary concern.
Well, I lucked out – The Age of Consent is a great read. Part political manifesto, part explanation of the injustices of the current global political system, it educated me on areas of politics — the United Nations, World Trade Organisation and World Bank in particular — which I knew little about.
Although the book is a little old and surely outdated in a few areas, the main messages still hold. Monbiot digs into some of the economic mechanisms that have created (and maintained) the extreme inequality that exists across the globe — these mechanisms still exist.
It’s easy to look at today’s political landscape and be horrified. In order to change the landscape, it’s vital to understand how we got to where we are. Monbiot provides historical context that both informs and warns against repeating the same mistakes in the future.
FYI: I’ve also since read Heat by George Monbiot.