Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Book Review: A Call to Action by Jimmy Carter

From Goodreads:
President Carter was encouraged to write this book by a wide coalition of leaders of all faiths. His urgent report is current. It covers the plight of women and girls–strangled at birth, forced to suffer servitude, child marriage, genital cutting, deprived of equal opportunity in wealthier nations and "owned" by men in others. And the most vulnerable, along with their children, are trapped in war and violence...
Throughout, Carter reports on observations of women activists and workers of The Carter Center. This is an informed and passionate charge about human rights abuses against half the world's population. It comes from one of the world's most renowned human rights advocates.
Writing
Well done.  No complaints with the quality of writing and certainly none with the research and documentation.  The Carter Center is well known for its humanitarian work and all of Carter's statistics and research are backed up with their data.  This isn't a critique of the writing, but it reads more like a collection of essays and less like a cohesive work, which isn't what I was expecting.  That said, it certainly didn't hurt the quality of the writing in the least.

Entertainment Value
I found it fascinating, but I think it's going to be one that you need to come to with an interest in the subject matter.  Carter covers all his bases with various world religions, politics, and the violence faced by women at home and around the world.  It's incredibly engaging and accessible to the lay person, but if you don't have an interest in current world events and the way they affect women, this may not be something you want to pick up for fun.  It's not a difficult read, but it's also not a light read.

Overall
Fascinating, challenging, and very well composed.  I have to confess that I'm not very educated on the Carter administration and what was or was not accomplished while he was in office.  I will say, however, that I highly respect the opinions he puts forth in this book and his efforts to educate the public on social justice issues while maintaining his faith and respecting the faiths of others.  I recommend it if you're interested in women's issues, current events, or social justice issues.


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