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Download Fordlandia: The Rise and Fall of Henry Ford’s Forgotten Jungle City Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Fordlandia: The Rise and Fall of Henry Ford’s Forgotten Jungle City, by Greg Grandin Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,160 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Greg Grandin Narrator: Jonathan Davis Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Fordlandia by National Book Award finalist Greg Grandin tells the enthralling tale of Henry Ford’s failed attempts to transform a Connecticut-sized chunk of Brazilian rainforest into a homespun slice of American utopia.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Fordlandia is a genuinely readable history recounted with a novelist’s sense of pace and an eye for character. It is a significant contribution [that is] grossly enjoyable.”

    Los Angeles Times

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Heath | 2/11/2014

    " If I were to write a book about the rise and fall of Henry Ford's socialistic experiment in the Amazonian rain forest, this would be the book. While it was incredibly long, it was at the same time incredibly detailed. There aren't many people alive today who would understand, let alone remember, the context of these events. Greg Grandin does an excellent job of telling the story while also setting the context for them. I discovered an entire era of world history in this book, not just the tale of a larger-than-life man and his eccentric quest to reign in that which he had created (including his company, the industrial age, the loss of innocence, the war machine, and even his son). Worth the read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Leslie | 1/27/2014

    " Henry Ford was an idealist and a crank. His anti-Semitism is well-known and repulsive, but I can admire some of his ideals, like his insistence on the need to pay his workers good wages and provide them with benefits like health care and his fierce pacifism, although his expression of them could be odd (like the peace ship he sent off to Europe to convince those silly Europeans to stop WWI). His arrogant willingness to meddle in other people's lives (and his firm belief that he was entitled to meddle because he knew so much better than they how they should be living) led him to set up an entire section of his company to tell employees where they should live, what their yards should look like, and how to spend their free time; another was filled with thugs to threaten, bully, beat, and even kill (by firing on a group of hunger marchers during the Depression) union-organizers and other such undesirables. In the twenties, worried about the global rubber supply and annoyed that the foreign-owned industry wasn't conforming to his wishes, he got control of a huge swath of the Amazon rainforest and decided to grow his own rubber. Despising experts and book-learned elitists, he set it up without the help of anyone who knew anything about agriculture in the Amazon, about growing rubber, about rainforest insects, or about Brazil and its people, trusting to American know-how and good old common sense to knock down all barriers to success. The towns he built there were attempts to replicate an idealised version of small-town Midwestern life that he saw disappearing around him (without, apparently, acknowledging that his own actions and products had contributed to their decline); the houses were more suited to Michigan than to tropical Brazil, and he made no concessions to local needs or circumstances (attempting to enforce American-style prohibition, for example, although no Brazilian law outlawed alcohol). It didn't go very well. Although the details have changed, the arrogance and unshakable techno-utopianism are still with us (there's no problem we can't solve with a bit of technology!), and the Amazon, among other places, is still paying the price. An important and interesting story, well-told. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Mike Ward | 1/7/2014

    " Dull and long - don't bother "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Curtis | 1/5/2014

    " This book tells the story of Henry Ford's ambitious, well intentioned yet disastrous attempt to embed a slice of 1920's main street America into the heart of the Brazilian Amazon. Fordlandia was meant to be the place that would supply Henry Ford's rubber insufficiencies back in the States. On account of arrogance, mismanagement, naivety, and plain stupidity however, Fordlandia only every amounted to a money pit for a Ford and a slum of discontented and broken down native Brazilian workers. Grandin's historical portrayal throughout the book is exceptional. Ford was a complex man full of the grandest ambitions and dreams that he hoped would shape America and the later the whole world. He was also a man who through his actions contradicted nearly everything that he claimed to believe in. He left behind a legacy of both good and bad by my assessment. Fordlandia was only one of Ford's many great endeavor's. Grandin's treatment of Ford's handling of this Brazilian industrial utopia sheds a lot of light on not only the history of the town itself but on Ford and what made him tick. "

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About the Author
Author Greg Grandin

Greg Grandin is the author of Fordlandia, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, as well as Kissinger’s Shadow, Empire’s Workshop, The Empire of Necessity, and The Blood of Guatemala. A professor of history at New York University and a recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center, he has served on the UN Truth Commission and has written for the Nation, Los Angeles Times, New Statesman, and New York Times.