Franklin Foer Analysis

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Franklin Foer is a highly acclaimed American journalist, well-known for his eccentric and individualistic writings. His devotion to the World of Soccer has prompted him to write a perspicacious and thrilling book on the sport. The extract is from the book “How soccer explains the world: An unlikely theory of Globalization” which was published on June 29th 2004. The book presents a unique and brilliantly illuminating look at soccer, the world’s most popular sport, as a lens through which to view the pressing issues of our age, from the clash of civilizations to the global economy. Franklin Foer’s commendable use of language and his enviable skills as a narrator, coupled with his first hand narratives and his abundant knowledge of the subject…show more content…
This leaves the writer confused as to where the writer is going with his essay; Foer’s witty narrative offers no consolation for his ill-structured writing. Allen Guttman aptly describes Foer’s thesis as ‘anemic’ claiming it ‘flickers on and off like a lightbulb on its last amps’. (Guttman) At times the writer goes off on a tangent mid-point, discussing everything from parenting styles to the American class system and politics in a paragraph titled ‘how soccer explain the American culture wars’ (Foer, para 6). This might have been forgivable had the author eventually linked the ideas into one coherent conclusion; however this never happens. The entire essay reads more as a series of random musings than the powerful persuasive essay the prologue hints at. The essay’s shortcomings might be explained by the false premise Foer basis his argument on; the fact that he assumes soccer-related behavior explains globalization rather than the more likely assumption that variations in soccer-related behavior are actually explained by globalization. This error of false causation, which the writer incorporates throughout his essay, makes his arguments appear almost irrational. Such an error is not what one would expect from a…show more content…
Reading the title of his book, one cannot rigidly attribute it to a particular genre; Foer’s intention to capture the attention of sports fanatics and current-affairs enthusiasts alike is blatantly obvious through the title of his book alone. However in his attempt to sell more copies he has perhaps written a book that serves neither audience well and thus the writer fails to achieve his purpose. He neither proves the alleged claim of how soccer explains the world, nor does he make soccer appear any more likable to anti-soccer lobbyists, if that were his intention. Foer does bring forth an interesting theory of how traditionalists believe soccer is a ‘threat to American culture’ and an expression of a ‘phobia of globalization’ (Foer, para 13). But rather than clearing the air, his essay offers no defense of soccer in the face of these accusations. Queenan offers an interesting insight into what Foer has managed to achieve with his book, claiming “Foer has written a paean to a sport he loves that will provide even more ammunition to those who loathe it”. (Queenan) Undoubtedly, this cannot have been Foer’s intention while writing the book and hence one can conclude that the author has inadvertently failed both to achieve his purpose and to appeal to a wide audience.

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