"Casey travels the world to research how we 'have failed to stop a powerful, globalized financial system that benefits a privileged few while subjecting everyone else to uncertainty and instability.'... Noting that globalization is an 'unstoppable train,' Casey concludes with suggestions for reform, including a common approach to international financial regulation, transparency in global financial systems, a solution beyond Dodd-Frank regulation for winding down cross-border institutions, and measures that eliminate government policies benefiting one class of citizens in preference to another.
All will not agree with Casey’s analysis, but he offers valuable perspective on critical issues in this timely book."
Mary Whaley, Booklist, on The Unfair Trade
"A Wall Street Journal managing editor and columnist explains how the distorted policies underlying the global financial system undermine the Average Joes of all nations ... The author attributes the world’s middle-class misfortunes to the uneven playing field created by a mismatch of fossilized national policies with the fast-moving exigencies of globalization ... In a world of banks too big to fail and politicians beholden to big-money contributors, ordinary citizens have borne the brunt of the economic pain. Rather than forcing them to pay any more of the costs of a broken system, Casey calls for a series of systemic national and international reforms, almost all of which require an unprecedented degree of cooperation, to help restore a trust and confidence dangerously shaken. A well-reported, deeply serious appraisal of the exceptional damage a dysfunctional system inflicts on unexceptional people."
Kirkus Reviews(full review » ) , on The Unfair Trade
"The financial crisis is more than a story of complex securities and big banks. It is a global crisis and, for all too many, a personal tragedy. Michael Casey succeeds in making these connections like few others."
Barry Eichengreen, George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Political Science, University of California, Berkeley and author of Exorbitant Privilege, on The Unfair Trade
"A compelling indictment of our global financial system. If you think the size, structure, and incentives of our biggest banks are not a cause for concern, you have not been paying attention. Michael Casey will set you straight."
Simon Johnson, Professor of Entrepreneurship at MIT Sloan School of Management and co-author of 13 Bankers and White House Burning, on The Unfair Trade
"The Unfair Trade not only makes an impressive journalistic effort at explaining how a broken international financial system affects ordinary people around the world but Casey also offers a set of policies for building a more balanced system that will restore trust—and be better prepared to handle the next crisis. I learned a lot from this remarkable book."
Hernando de Soto, author of The Mystery of Capital and chairman of the Institute for Liberty and Democracy in Lima, Peru, on The Unfair Trade
"[A] fascinating new book…bracing and keenly observed…Although newspaper and magazine articles have traversed this ground before, none have done so with the thoroughness and globe-trotting ardor of Che’s Afterlife. Mr. Casey has written a book that is not only a cultural history of an image, but also a sociopolitical study of the mechanisms of fame. It is a book about how ideas travel and mutate in this age of globalization, how concepts of political ideology have increasingly come to be trumped by notions of commerce and cool and chic…"
Michiko Kakutani, in the New York Times(full review » ) , on Che’s Afterlife
"An evocative and well written account of All Things Che: chronicling the Argentine revolutionary’s remarkable life and early death - followed by his subsequent beatification and spectacular reincarnation as a global brand. Casey’s book is eagle-eyed on the merchandising on Che beginning with the cleverly-cropped Korda photo of the beret-wearing Che. There are insightful interviews with Che’s daughter Aleida and most especially with Che’s illegitimate son, Omar Perez Lopez, a dissident and poet who finds himself picking tomatoes in a labor camp in Cuba that had been established by his father."
Ann Louise Bardach, author of Cuba Confidential and Without Fidel, on Che’s Afterlife
"I love books that make me think…What [Casey] comes away with is a fascinating tale of the photographer, the history of the print itself and a global account of the countless places and people that exact image has touched… It’s a fascinating account, and in the post-Warhol age of Shepard Fairey, about as timely as a book gets. By nearly eschewing most political overtones and focusing on the image itself, Casey comes away with as many enthralling tales of simulacrum as he can find people to tell them."
"Che Guevara’s death was a brilliant career move. His image circled the globe, giving hope to the hopeless and profit to its exploiters. Lively and informative, Che’s Afterlife smartly chronicles the explosive Guevara growth industry in the marketplace of ideas and icons."
Tom Miller, author of Trading With the Enemy: A Yankee Travels Through Castro’s Cuba, on Che’s Afterlife
"Michael Casey’s notable history of how the Che Guevara brand was 'produced' by different creators has many readings. The most innovative may well be the one that explains how Fidel Castro and the Cuban Revolution used the myth and image of the Argentine revolutionary to disguise the conservative turn they took at almost the exact moment Guevara died. If Che had not existed, Casey suggests, Castro would have had to invent him."
Jorge Castañeda, author of Compañero: The Life and Death of Che Guevara, on Che’s Afterlife
"In this entertaining and provocative book, Michael Casey takes us into the realm where Che’s martyrdom ends and his global branding begins. Che’s Afterlife is also a smart and sassy comment about our life and times; well worth the read."
Jon Lee Anderson, bestselling author of Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life, on Che’s Afterlife
"[An] amazing book..."
"Casey traces the uses and misuses of Che’s now iconic image. Traversing several continents, Casey finds Che’s omnipresent image on T-shirts, of course, but also on coffee mugs, alcoholic-beverage containers, and even children’s clothes. Che has become a “brand” for the capitalist world he despised. This is an interesting examination of the processes of mythmaking and commercialization working in tandem to guarantee immortality to a man who failed more often than he succeeded."
Jay Freeman, Booklist, on Che’s Afterlife
"Rather than reciting the tired arguments against the appropriation of the image, Casey picks up where the martyr left off, by attempting to explain the global appeal of a single photograph, what it has meant for the last 49 years, and what it elucidates about our current relationship to visual culture…Che’s Afterlife is worth the read for its historical clarity, Casey’s vivid storytelling, and his adroit analysis of the multilayered meaning of photography as both a vehicle for and a destroyer of ideals."
"Part detective story, part travelogue, Che’s Afterlife is the definitive account of the birth and dissemination of an iconic image. Michael Casey peers behind the photographs and posters of the guerrilla martyr Che Guevara, and finds a riveting tale of art and ambition, of rebellion and merchandising. It is illuminating and essential reading."
Héctor Tobar, Pulitzer-prize winning author of Translation Nation, on Che’s Afterlife
"Che’s life has been rigorously chronicled, but Michael Casey…offers a different twist. Che’s Afterlife is the biography of a brand, and it tells the compelling story of how globalization, marketing and revolutionary politics combined to turn an image abstracted from a March 1960 photograph of Che taken by Fidel Castro’s personal photographer, Alberto Díaz Gutiérrez (known as Korda), into an icon that has transcended the 'reality' of its subject."
Eusebio Mujal-León, Americas Quarterly(full review » ) , on Che’s Afterlife
"A tour de force of pop cultural entertainment and analysis. Whether the iterations of the picture appear in an advertising campaign for tennis shoes, on the T-shirt of a Berkeley fashionista, or at a Hezbollah rally, Casey has extensively documented and perceptively explained the remarkable transposability of one of the most famous photographs of the 20th century (and beyond). Moreover, like the best students of humankind, he has shown us our own reflection in the icon–that is, how popular culture has come to dominate commerce, politics, even history. Che’s Afterlife will inform historians and delight the public."
David D. Perlmutter, Professor, University of Kansas and author of Blog Wars, on Che’s Afterlife
"I saw myself in the book time and again, not in any of the political ideologies, but rather as one of the many 'young Americans [who] know [Che] only as a T-shirt logo.' Casey’s study is well-researched, well-written, and lots of fun, a book more at home under the cultural studies rubric than biography or history. Recommended. (Selected as one of Biblioklept's 'best books of 2009')"
Biblioklept(full review » ) , on Che’s Afterlife
"A fascinating new book"
"Casey has written an intriguing history of the image’s trajectory over the last half century. He brings together research into the lives of both Korda and Guevara, a command of the history of Revolutionary Cuba, knowledge of countries where the Guevara mythology is important, an understanding of copyright law, and original investigative interviewing and reporting."
Archibald Ritter, Latin American Research Review(full review » ) , on Che’s Afterlife
"[Casey] suggests that the power of Che, the brand, is in its ability to be anything to anyone. . . . Readers interested in the impact of visual culture or in better understanding the elusiveness of intellectual property rights, particularly in a global marketplace, will find much food for thought."
Publishers Weekly, on Che’s Afterlife
"A semiotic history of one of the world’s most widely reproduced, ideologically fraught photographs. . . . A comprehensive tour of the icon’s progress. . . . [Casey] maintains a clear focus on what the Korda photo says to him. For all Guevara’s failures as a revolutionary in the Congo and in Bolivia (where he was captured and killed), and for all the violent consequences of his idealism, Guevara remains to Casey a symbol of underdog resilience. Now that the image has been all but divorced from its initial context and meaning, he dreams that it can transcend ideology as well and become an icon of hope."
Kirkus Reviews, on Che’s Afterlife