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By Roddey Reid, Indiana: Bloomington and Indianapolis, 2005, $24.95; pp 310, ISBN 0-253-21809-8.
What do California, France, and Japan have in common? Answer: tobacco control programmes. How do the programmes differ? Answer: while thinking globally, each acts locally. That seems to be the main message of this sprawling and sometimes informative work. The author is professor of literature at the University of San Diego, California, “an interdisciplinary scholar working at the intersection of French studies, science studies, communication, and cultural studies,” as well as a former Japan Foundation Abe Fellow. The book mirrors the author’s eclectic interests, and seems to originate from his opportunistic presence in the three locations described. The vagaries and politics in each area are described in such quotidian detail as to interest only those who took part. An activist just starting out on a …