- xii, 331 p. ; 25 cm.
- Contents: 1. In the beginning: four invasions and a cultural revolution -- 2. Defeat into victory: the DNA of self-expression -- 3. 'Lighte Englisshe': medieval mass communications -- 4. Eating paper, drinking ink: Shakespeare and Co. -- 5. 'A whole country of English': re-inventing freedom & originality -- 6. 'Common hopes and common dreams': lighting out for the territory -- 7. 'The audacity of hope': from slavery to redemption -- 8. Rule Britannia!: how England became British -- 9. East, in a Western voice: the people's empire -- 10. 'At the top of the world': the imperial swam song -- 11. 'A willingness of the heart': the American century I -- 12. 'The unity of the English-speaking peoples': The American century -- 13. 'The world at your fingertips': from Google to Globish, 1989-2008 -- 14. One world, one dream: 'conquer English to make China strong' -- 15. Virtually running America: India, the Far East and beyond.Includes bibliographical references (p. -312) and index.Summary: "How English conquered the world: a Guns, Germs, and Steel argument based on the power of the word. It seems impossible: a small island in the North Atlantic, colonized by Rome, then pillaged for hundreds of years by marauding neighbors, becomes the dominant world power in the nineteenth century. Equally unlikely, a colony of that island nation, across the Atlantic, grows into the military and cultural colossus of the twentieth century. How? By the sword, of course; by trade and industrial ingenuity; but principally, and most surprisingly, by the power of their common language. In this provocative and compelling new look at the course of empire, Robert McCrum, coauthor of the best-selling book and television series The Story of English, shows how the language of the Anglo-American imperium has become the world’s lingua franca. In fascinating detail he describes the ever-accelerating changes wrought on the language by the far-flung cultures claiming citizenship in the new hegemony. In the twenty-first century, writes the author, English + Microsoft = Globish."--Publisher description.