It is a mix of history and opinion (albeit heavily fact-supported opinion), grouped into chapters that dive deeply into affirmative action programs (original motivations as well as results to date) in several countries: India, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, and the US.
I was already familiar with a bunch of the data on the US situation (results as well as the data immediately leading up to its implementation), but I knew much less about affirmative action programs in the other countries mentioned. Read the book for the full story, but nearly every case involved plenty of:
- Good intentions gone awry
- Programs meant to be temporary far outliving the originally-envisioned duration
- Everyone completely disregarding the law of unintended consequences