Thursday, August 31, 2023

"Freedom from Fear"

New from Princeton University Press: Freedom from Fear: An Incomplete History of Liberalism by Alan S. Kahan.

About the book, from the publisher:
Freedom from Fear offers a striking new account of the dominant political and social theory of our time: liberalism. In a pathbreaking reframing of the historical debate, Alan Kahan charts the development of Western liberalism from the late eighteenth century to the present. Examining key liberal thinkers and issues, Kahan shows how liberalism is both a response to fear and a source of hope: the search for a world in which no one need be afraid.

Freedom from Fear reveals how liberal arguments typically rely on three pillars: freedom, markets, and morals. But when liberals ignore one or more of these pillars, their arguments generally fail to persuade. Extending from Adam Smith and Montesquieu to today’s battles between liberals and populists, the book examines the twists and turns of the “incomplete” or unfinished liberal tradition while demonstrating its fundamental continuity. It combines fresh accounts of familiar figures such as Tocqueville and Rawls with discussions of less-famous but pivotal thinkers such as A. V. Dicey and Jane Addams, and explores how liberals have dealt with crucial issues, from debates over male and female suffrage to colonialism and liberal anti-Catholicism.

By transforming our understanding of the history of liberal thought and practice, Freedom from Fear provides a new picture of the political creed today: the paths liberals need to follow, the questions they need to answer, and the dead ends they must avoid—if they are to win.
--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

"Dynasty Divided"

New from Northern Illinois University Press: Dynasty Divided: A Family History of Russian and Ukrainian Nationalism by Fabian Baumann.

About the book, from the publisher:
Dynasty Divided uses the story of a prominent Kievan family of journalists, scholars, and politicians to analyze the emergence of rivaling nationalisms in nineteenth-century Ukraine, the most pivotal borderland of the Russian Empire. The Shul'gins identified as Russians and defended the tsarist autocracy; the Shul'hyns identified as Ukrainians and supported peasant-oriented socialism. Fabian Baumann shows how these men and women consciously chose a political position and only then began their self-fashioning as members of a national community, defying the notion of nationalism as a direct consequence of ethnicity.

Baumann asks what made individuals into determined nationalists in the first place, revealing the close link to private lives, including intimate family dramas and scandals. He looks at how nationalism emerged from domestic spaces, and how women played an important (if often invisible) role in fin-de-siècle politics. Dynasty Divided explains how nineteenth-century Kievans cultivated their national self-images and how, by the twentieth century, Ukraine steered away from Russia. The two branches of this family of Russian nationalists and Ukrainian nationalists epitomize the struggles for modern Ukraine.
--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

"In Defense of Solidarity and Pleasure"

Coming soon from Stanford University Press: In Defense of Solidarity and Pleasure: Feminist Technopolitics from the Global South by Firuzeh Shokooh Valle.

About the book, from the publisher:
Including women in the global South as users, producers, consumers, designers, and developers of technology has become a mantra against inequality, prompting movements to train individuals in information and communication technologies and foster the participation and retention of women in science and technology fields. In this book, Firuzeh Shokooh Valle argues that these efforts have given rise to an idealized, female economic figure that combines technological dexterity and keen entrepreneurial instinct with gendered stereotypes of care and selflessness. Narratives about the "equalizing" potential of digital technologies spotlight these women's capacity to overcome inequality using said technologies, ignoring the barriers and circumstances that create such inequality in the first place as well as the potentially violent role of technology in their lives. In Defense of Solidarity and Pleasure examines how women in the Global South experience and resist the coopting and depoliticizing nature of these scripts. Drawing on fieldwork in Costa Rica and a transnational feminist digital organization, Shokooh Valle explores the ways that feminist activists, using digital technologies as well as a collective politics that prioritize solidarity and pleasure, advance a new feminist technopolitics.
--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, August 28, 2023

“Failures of Forgiveness”

Coming soon from Princeton University Press: Failures of Forgiveness: What We Get Wrong and How to Do Better by Myisha Cherry.

About the book, from the publisher:
Sages from Cicero to Oprah have told us that forgiveness requires us to let go of negative emotions and that it has a unique power to heal our wounds. In Failures of Forgiveness, Myisha Cherry argues that these beliefs couldn’t be more wrong—and that the ways we think about and use forgiveness, personally and as a society, can often do more harm than good. She presents a new and healthier understanding of forgiveness—one that will give us a better chance to recover from wrongdoing and move toward “radical repair.”

Cherry began exploring forgiveness after some relatives of the victims of the mass shooting at Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina, forgave what seemed unforgiveable. She was troubled that many observers appeared to be more inspired by these acts of forgiveness than they were motivated to confront the racial hatred that led to the killings. That is a big mistake, Cherry argues. Forgiveness isn’t magic. We can forgive and still be angry, there can be good reasons not to forgive, and forgiving a wrong without tackling its roots solves nothing. Examining how forgiveness can go wrong in families, between friends, at work, and in the media, politics, and beyond, Cherry addresses forgiveness and race, canceling versus forgiving, self-forgiveness, and more. She takes the burden of forgiveness off those who have been wronged and offers guidance both to those deciding whether and how to forgive and those seeking forgiveness.

By showing us how to do forgiveness better, Failures of Forgiveness promises to transform how we deal with wrongdoing in our lives, opening a new path to true healing and reconciliation.
Visit Myisha Cherry's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, August 27, 2023

"All the Kingdoms of the World"

New from Oxford University Press: All the Kingdoms of the World: On Radical Religious Alternatives to Liberalism by Kevin Vallier.

About the book, from the publisher:
A fresh assessment of Catholic integralism and other new and radical religious alternatives to liberal democracy.

According to a common narrative, the twentieth century spelled the end of faith-infused political movements. Their ideologies, like Catholic integralism, would soon be forgotten. Humans were finally learning to keep religion out of politics.

Or were we? In the twenty-first century, nations as diverse as Russia, India, Poland, and Turkey have seen a revival of religious politics, and many religious movements in other countries have proved similarly resilient. A new generation of political theologians passionately reformulate ancient religious doctrines to revolutionize modern political life. They insist that states recognize the true religion, and they reject modern liberal ideals of universal religious freedom and church-state separation.

In this book, philosopher Kevin Vallier explores these new doctrines, not as lurid oddities but as though they might be true. The anti-liberal doctrine known as Catholic integralism serves as Vallier's test case. Yet his approach naturally extends to similar ideologies within Chinese Confucianism and Sunni Islam.

Vallier treats anti-liberal thinkers with the respect that liberals seldom afford them and offers more moderate skeptics of liberalism a clear account of the alternatives. Many liberals, by contrast, will find these doctrines frightening and strange but of enduring interest. Vallier invites all his readers on a unique intellectual adventure, encouraging them to explore unfamiliar ideals through the lenses of theology, philosophy, politics, economics, and history.
Visit Kevin Vallier's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, August 26, 2023

"Boats in a Storm"

New from Stanford University Press: Boats in a Storm: Law, Migration, and Decolonization in South and Southeast Asia, 1942–1962 by Kalyani Ramnath.

About the book, from the publisher:
For more than century before World War II, traders, merchants, financiers, and laborers steadily moved between places on the Indian Ocean, trading goods, supplying credit, and seeking work. This all changed with the war and as India, Burma, Ceylon, and Malaya wrested independence from the British empire. Set against the tumult of the postwar period, Boats in a Storm centers on the legal struggles of migrants to retain their traditional rhythms and patterns of life, illustrating how they experienced citizenship and decolonization. Even as nascent citizenship regimes and divergent political trajectories of decolonization papered over migrations between South and Southeast Asia, migrants continued to recount cross-border histories in encounters with the law. These accounts, often obscured by national and international political developments, unsettle the notion that static national identities and loyalties had emerged, fully formed and unblemished by migrant pasts, in the aftermath of empires.

Drawing on archival materials from India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, London, and Singapore, Kalyani Ramnath narrates how former migrants battled legal requirements to revive prewar circulations of credit, capital, and labor, in a postwar context of rising ethno-nationalisms that accused migrants of stealing jobs and hoarding land. Ultimately, Ramnath shows how decolonization was marked not only by shipwrecked empires and nation-states assembled and ordered from the debris of imperial collapse, but also by these forgotten stories of wartime displacements, their unintended consequences, and long afterlives.
--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, August 25, 2023

"The Stolen Bones of St. John of Matha"

New from Penn State University Press: The Stolen Bones of St. John of Matha: Forgery, Theft, and Sainthood in the Seventeenth Century by A. Katie Harris.

About the book, from the publisher:
On the night of March 18, 1655, two Spanish friars broke into a church to steal the bones of the founder of their religious institution, the Order of the Most Holy Trinity. This book investigates this little-known incident of relic theft and the lengthy legal case that followed, together with the larger questions that surround the remains of saints in seventeenth-century Catholic Europe.

Drawing on a wealth of manuscript and print sources from the era, A. Katie Harris uses the case of St. John of Matha’s stolen remains to explore the roles played by saints’ relics, the anxieties invested in them, their cultural meanings, and the changing modes of thought with which early modern Catholics approached them. While in theory a relic’s authenticity and identity might be proved by supernatural evidence, in practice early modern Church authorities often reached for proofs grounded in the material, human world—preferences that were representative of the standardizing and streamlining of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century saint-making. Harris examines how Matha’s advocates deployed material and documentary proofs, locating them within a framework of Scholastic concepts of individuation, identity, change, and persistence, and applying moral certainty to accommodate the inherent uncertainty of human evidence and relic knowledge.

Engaging and accessible, The Stolen Bones of St. John of Matha raises an array of important questions surrounding relic identity and authenticity in seventeenth-century Europe. It will be of interest to students, scholars, and casual readers interested in European history, religious history, material culture, and Renaissance studies.
--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, August 24, 2023

"The Enthusiast"

New from Cornell University Press: The Enthusiast: Anatomy of the Fanatic in Seventeenth-Century British Culture by William Cook Miller.

About the book, from the publisher:
The Enthusiast tells the story of a character type that was developed in early modern Britain to discredit radical prophets during an era that witnessed the dismantling of the Church of England's traditional means for punishing heresy. As William Cook Miller shows, the caricature of fanaticism here called the Enthusiast began as propaganda against religious dissenters, especially working-class upstarts, but was adopted by a range of writers as a literary vehicle for exploring profound problems of spirit, soul, and body and as a persona for the ironic expression of their own prophetic illuminations.

Taking shape through the public and private writings of some of the most insightful authors of seventeenth-century Britain—Henry More, John Locke, the Third Earl of Shaftesbury, Mary Astell, and Jonathan Swift, among others—the Enthusiast appeared in various guises and literary modes.

By attending to this literary being and its animators, The Enthusiast establishes the figure of the fanatic as a bridge between the Reformation and the Enlightenment, showing how an incipient secular modernity was informed by not the rejection of religion but the transformation of the prophet into something sparkling, witty, ironic, and new.
Visit William Cook Miller's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

"Rights Refused"

Coming soon from Stanford University Press: Rights Refused: Grassroots Activism and State Violence in Myanmar by Elliott Prasse-Freeman.

About the book, from the publisher:
For decades, the outside world mostly knew Myanmar as the site of a valiant human rights struggle against an oppressive military regime, predominantly through the figure of Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi. And yet, a closer look at Burmese grassroots sentiments reveals a significant schism between elite human rights cosmopolitans and subaltern Burmese subjects maneuvering under brutal and negligent governance. While elites have endorsed human rights logics, subalterns are ambivalent, often going so far as to refuse rights themselves, seeing in them no more than empty promises. Such alternative perspectives became apparent during Burma's much-lauded decade-long "transition" from military rule that began in 2011, a period of massive change that saw an explosion of political and social activism.

How then do people conduct politics when they lack the legally and symbolically stabilizing force of "rights" to guarantee their incursions against injustice? In this book, Elliott Prasse-Freeman documents grassroots political activists who advocate for workers and peasants across Burma, covering not only the so-called "democratic transition" from 2011-2021, but also the February 2021 military coup that ended that experiment and the ongoing mass uprising against it. Taking the reader from protest camps, to flop houses, to prisons, and presenting practices as varied as courtroom immolation, occult cursing ceremonies, and land reoccupations, Rights Refused shows how Burmese subaltern politics compel us to reconsider how rights frameworks operate everywhere.
--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

"Voodoo: The History of a Racial Slur"

Coming soon from Oxford University Press: Voodoo: The History of a Racial Slur by Danielle N. Boaz.

About the book, from the publisher:
Coined in the middle of the nineteenth century, the term "voodoo" has been deployed largely by people in the U.S. to refer to spiritual practices--real or imagined--among people of African descent. "Voodoo" is one way that white people have invoked their anxieties and stereotypes about Black people--to call them uncivilized, superstitious, hypersexual, violent, and cannibalistic.

In this book, Danielle Boaz explores public perceptions of "voodoo" as they have varied over time, with an emphasis on the intricate connection between stereotypes of "voodoo" and debates about race and human rights. The term has its roots in the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s, especially following the Union takeover of New Orleans, when it was used to propagate the idea that Black Americans held certain "superstitions" that allegedly proved that they were unprepared for freedom, the right to vote, and the ability to hold public office. Similar stereotypes were later extended to Cuba and Haiti in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. In the 1930s, Black religious movements like the Moorish Science Temple and the Nation of Islam were derided as "voodoo cults." More recently, ideas about "voodoo" have shaped U.S. policies toward Haitian immigrants in the 1980s, and international responses to rituals to bind Nigerian women to human traffickers in the twenty-first century. Drawing on newspapers, travelogues, magazines, legal documents, and books, Boaz shows that the term "voodoo" has often been a tool of racism, colonialism, and oppression.
--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, August 21, 2023

"Thucydides' Meditations on Fear"

New from Anthem Press: Thucydides' Meditations on Fear: Examining Contemporary Cases by Raymond Taras.

About the book, from the publisher:
Examining today’s global politics by linking it to the meditations of a classical Greek philosopher may be counterintuitive to understanding a world in crisis. But for political analysts, policymakers, social media, bloggers, journalists, engaged students, the new influencers, and inquisitive citizens, Thucydides’ ancient wisdom may offer critical insights into detecting the endemic of political fear spreading across global borders. With his help and by applying his framework to six case studies, this book unearths the different facets of fear that define a world in crisis.

Fear is a pervasive term used to describe a group’s or individual’s sense of insecurity, threat, and angst. It identifies other subtle dimensions comprising suspicion, scepticism, wariness, dread, horror, stupefication, and moral panic. These events may arise in the very near future or affect society at some later point, as Thucydides discovered in his analysis. Disaggregating political fear makes us aware of its complexities as the classical Greek writer set out twenty-five centuries ago. Framing his study to today’s fears results in significant ramifications for democracy and rivalries between states.

Thucydides’ meditations on fear is about six intriguing case studies structuring political fear: national fear which caused the Brexit outcome in the UK; a regional kind fomenting fear of foreigners in Germany’s Saxony state; an ethnic dimension emerging in a Russia fearful of too much in-migration; an individual case of a Japanese artist experiencing angst when caught between adversaries in World War II; fear of interstate relations shaping Australia’s troubled connections to China; and the precariousness of identity as the U.S. began to embrace tribal politics. In all this, can a rejuvenated liberal theory unpacking a heavy dose of tolerance overcome symbolic liberalism and slam the door on ever-mounting political fear?
Visit Ray Taras's faculty webpage.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, August 20, 2023

"Reform Nation"

Coming soon from Stanford University Press: Reform Nation: The First Step Act and the Movement to End Mass Incarceration by Colleen P. Eren.

About the book, from the publisher:
How one law tells the story of America's modern criminal justice movement

In late 2018, the First Step Act was signed into law by President Donald Trump just hours before a government shutdown. It was one of few major pieces of federal criminal justice reform since the 1970s to move toward reversing the incarceration frenzy that had characterized United States policy. While it did not amount to revolutionary reform, in Reform Nation, Colleen P. Eren investigates it as a symbol for the larger movement's trajectory. Its unlikely passage during a period of political polarization was testament to the power of a new constellation of advocates, stakeholders, and strange bedfellow alliances.

These intriguing and complex dynamics are indicative of a longer, twenty-year shift in which the movement became nationalized and mainstreamed. Using in-depth interviews with major players in the national movement, formerly incarcerated activists, celebrities, and donors, this is the first book to turn the mirror back on the criminal justice reform movement itself—the frames used, the voices heard, the capital activated among elite participants, and the bitter controversies. This snapshot in time raises much larger questions about how our democratic processes inform criminal justice policy, and where we are going in the decades to come.
--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, August 19, 2023

"24/7 Politics"

New from Princeton University Press: 24/7 Politics: Cable Television and the Fragmenting of America from Watergate to Fox News by Kathryn Cramer Brownell.

About the book, from the publisher:
As television began to overtake the political landscape in the 1960s, network broadcast companies, bolstered by powerful lobbying interests, dominated screens across the nation. Yet over the next three decades, the expansion of a different technology, cable, changed all of this. 24/7 Politics tells the story of how the cable industry worked with political leaders to create an entirely new approach to television, one that tethered politics to profits and divided and distracted Americans by feeding their appetite for entertainment—frequently at the expense of fostering responsible citizenship.

In this timely and provocative book, Kathryn Cramer Brownell argues that cable television itself is not to blame for today’s rampant polarization and scandal politics—the intentional restructuring of television as a political institution is. She describes how cable innovations—from C-SPAN coverage of congressional debates in the 1980s to MTV’s foray into presidential politics in the 1990s—took on network broadcasting using market forces, giving rise to a more decentralized media world. Brownell shows how cable became an unstoppable medium for political communication that prioritized cult followings and loyalty to individual brands, fundamentally reshaped party politics, and, in the process, sowed the seeds of democratic upheaval.

24/7 Politics reveals how cable TV created new possibilities for antiestablishment voices and opened a pathway to political prominence for seemingly unlikely figures like Donald Trump by playing to narrow audiences and cultivating division instead of common ground.
--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, August 18, 2023

"Survival and Witness at Europe's Border"

Coming soon from Cornell University Press: Survival and Witness at Europe's Border: The Afterlives of a Disaster by Karina Horsti.

About the book, from the publisher:
Survival and Witness at Europe's Border focuses on one of the most mediatized migrant disasters in Europe. On October 3, 2013, an overcrowded fishing boat carrying Eritrean refugees caught fire near Lampedusa, Italy, where 368 people died. Karina Horsti shows with empathy and passion how this disaster produced a kaleidoscope of afterlives that continue to assume different forms depending on the position of the witness or survivors.

Pasts and futures intersect in the present when people who were touched by the disaster engage with its memory and politics. Horsti underscores how the perspective of survival can envision a way forward from a horrific unsustainable present.

Survival and Witness at Europe's Border develops the concept of survival to rethink border deaths beyond the structures and processes that produce the murderous border and constitute the focus of critical migration studies. It demonstrates how the process of survival transforms people and societies. Survival is productive, Horsti argues, shifting the focus in migration studies from apparatuses of control to emphasize the agency and subjectivity of refugees.
--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, August 17, 2023

"States of Cultivation"

New from Stanford University Press: States of Cultivation: Imperial Transition and Scientific Agriculture in the Eastern Mediterranean by Elizabeth R. Williams.

About the book, from the publisher:
The final decades of the Ottoman Empire and the period of the French mandate in Syria and Lebanon coincided with a critical period of transformation in agricultural technologies and administration. Chemical fertilizers and mechanized equipment inspired model farms while government officials and technocratic elites pursued new land tenure, credit-lending, and tax collection policies to maximize revenue. These policies transformed rural communities and environments and were central to projects of reform and colonial control—as well as to resistance of that control.

States of Cultivation examines the processes and effects of agrarian transformation over more than a century as Ottoman, Syrian, Lebanese, and French officials grappled with these new technologies, albeit with different end goals. Elizabeth Williams investigates the increasingly fragmented natures produced by these contrasting priorities and the results of their intersection with regional environmental limits. Not only did post–World War I policies realign the economic space of the mandate states, but they shaped an agricultural legacy that continued to impact Syria and Lebanon post-independence. With this book, Williams offers the first comprehensive account of the shared technocratic ideals that animated these policies and the divergent imperial goals that not only reshaped the region's agrarian institutions, but produced representations of the region with repercussions well beyond the mandate's end.
--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

"Helen of Troy in Hollywood"

New from Princeton University Press: Helen of Troy in Hollywood by Ruby Blondell.

About the book, from the publisher:
Helen of Troy in Hollywood examines the figure of the mythic Helen in film and television, showing how storytellers from different Hollywood eras have used Helen to grapple with the problems and dynamics of gender and idealized femininity. Paying careful attention to how the image of Helen is embodied by the actors who have portrayed her, Ruby Blondell provides close readings of such works as Wolfgang Petersen’s Troy and the Star Trek episode “Elaan of Troyius,” going beyond contextualization to lead the reader through a fundamental rethinking of how we understand and interpret the classic tradition.

A luminous work of scholarship by one of today’s leading classicists, Helen of Troy in Hollywood highlights the importance of ancient myths not as timeless stories frozen in the past but as lenses through which to view our own artistic, cultural, and political moment in a new light. This incisive book demonstrates how, whether as the hero of these screen adaptations or as a peripheral character in male-dominated adventures, the mythic Helen has become symbolic of the perceived dangers of superhuman beauty and transgressive erotic agency.
--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

"Aloha Compadre: Latinxs in Hawai'i"

New from Rutgers University Press: Aloha Compadre: Latinxs in Hawai'i by Rudy P. Guevarra Jr.

About the book, from the publisher:
Aloha Compadre: Latinxs in Hawaiʻi is the first book to examine the collective history and contemporary experiences of the Latinx population of Hawaiʻi. This study reveals that contrary to popular discourse, Latinx migration to Hawaiʻi is not a recent event. In the national memory of the United States, for example, the Latinx population of Hawaiʻi is often portrayed as recent arrivals and not as long-term historical communities with a presence that precedes the formation of statehood itself. Historically speaking, Latinxs have been voyaging to the Hawaiian Islands for over one hundred and ninety years. From the early 1830s to the present, they continue to help shape Hawaiʻi’s history, yet their contributions are often overlooked. Latinxs have been a part of the cultural landscape of Hawaiʻi prior to annexation, territorial status, and statehood in 1959. Aloha Compadre also explores the expanding boundaries of Latinx migration beyond the western hemisphere and into Oceania.
Rudy P. Guevarra Jr is professor of Asian Pacific American studies in the School of Social Transformation at Arizona State University. He is the author of Becoming Mexipino: Multiethnic Identities and Communities in San Diego, and coeditor of Beyond Ethnicity: New Politics of Race in Hawaiʻi.

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, August 14, 2023

"Incomplete Conquests"

New from Cornell University Press: Incomplete Conquests: The Limits of Spanish Empire in the Seventeenth-Century Philippines by Stephanie Joy Mawson.

About the book, from the publisher:
In Incomplete Conquests, Stephanie Joy Mawson uncovers the limitations of Spanish empire in the Philippines, unearthing histories of resistance, flight, evasion, conflict, and warfare from across the breadth of the Philippine archipelago during the seventeenth century. The Spanish colonization of the Philippines that began in 1565 has long been seen as heralding a new era of globalization, drawing together a multiethnic world of merchants, soldiers, sailors, and missionaries. Colonists sent reports back to Madrid boasting of the extraordinary number of souls converted to Christianity and the number of people paying tribute to the Spanish Crown. Such claims constructed an imagined imperial sovereignty and were not accompanied by effective consolidation of colonial control in many of the regions where conversion and tribute collection were imposed. Incomplete Conquests foregrounds the experiences of indigenous, Chinese, and Moro communities and their responses to colonial agents, weaving together stories that take into account the rich cultural and environmental diversity of this island world.
Stephanie Joy Mawson is a Research Fellow at the Instituto de Ciências Sociais at the University of Lisbon. Her work has been published in journals such as Past & Present and Ethnohistory.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, August 13, 2023

"Corruption and Global Justice"

New from Oxford University Press: Corruption and Global Justice by Gillian Brock.

About the book, from the publisher:
Corruption is a pervasive problem across the world and is regularly ranked as among the greatest global challenges. Considering the role that corruption plays in exacerbating deprivation and fuelling social tension, peaceful and just societies are unlikely to come about without tackling corruption.

Addressing corruption should be a high priority for those concerned with poverty eradication, peace, security, and justice. Yet, curiously, corruption has not yet been the focus of any books by philosophers working on global justice topics. Corruption and Global Justice does so. Author Gillian Brock offers a normatively justified account of how to allocate responsibilities for addressing corruption across the many agents who can and should play a role. In order to know who should take responsibility and how they should do so, we need to understand multiple forms of corruption, the corruption risks associated with various activities, the interventions that tackle corruption effectively, and current policy and legal frameworks in place for addressing corruption. In addition, Brock proposes a new framework for navigating responsibility to address injustice, one that is action-oriented and forward-looking. Adopting an agent-empowering approach and harnessing the power of joining forces in effective collective action, Corruption and Global Justice addresses a significant global problem in a comprehensive way, providing the tools we need for progress as we collaborate to tackle this global scourge.
--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, August 12, 2023

"The Year That Broke Politics"

New from Yale University Press: The Year That Broke Politics: Collusion and Chaos in the Presidential Election of 1968 by Luke A. Nichter.

About the book, from the publisher:
The unknown story of the election that set the tone for today’s fractured politics

The 1968 presidential race was a contentious battle between vice president Hubert Humphrey, Republican Richard Nixon, and former Alabama governor George Wallace. The United States was reeling from the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr., and Robert F. Kennedy and was bitterly divided on the Vietnam War and domestic issues, including civil rights and rising crime. Drawing on previously unexamined archives and numerous interviews, Luke A. Nichter upends the conventional understanding of the campaign.

Nichter chronicles how the evangelist Billy Graham met with Johnson after the president’s attempt to reenter the race was stymied by his own party, and offered him a deal: Nixon, if elected, would continue Johnson’s Vietnam War policy and also not oppose his Great Society, if Johnson would soften his support for Humphrey. Johnson agreed.

Nichter also shows that Johnson was far more active in the campaign than has previously been described; that Humphrey’s resurgence in October had nothing to do with his changing his position on the war; that Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” has been misunderstood, since he hardly even campaigned there; and that Wallace’s appeal went far beyond the South and anticipated today’s Republican populism. This eye-opening account of the political calculations and maneuvering that decided this fiercely fought election reshapes our understanding of a key moment in twentieth-century American history.
Visit Luke A. Nichter's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, August 11, 2023

"Moscow's Heavy Shadow"

New from Cornell University Press: Moscow's Heavy Shadow: The Violent Collapse of the USSR by Isaac McKean Scarborough.

About the book, from the publisher:
Moscow's Heavy Shadow tells the story of the collapse of the USSR from the perspective of the many millions of Soviet citizens who experienced it as a period of abjection and violence. Mikhail Gorbachev and the leaders of the USSR saw the years of reform preceding the collapse as opportunities for rebuilding (perestroika), rejuvenation, and openness (glasnost). For those in provincial cities across the Soviet Union, however, these reforms led to rapid change, economic collapse, and violence.

Focusing on Dushanbe, Tajikistan, Isaac McKean Scarborough describes how this city experienced skyrocketing unemployment, a depleted budget, and streets filled with angry young men unable to support their families. Tajikistan was left without financial or military resources, unable and unprepared to stand against the wave of populist politicians of all stripes who took advantage of the economic collapse and social discontent to try to gain power. By May 1992, political conflict became violent and bloody and engulfed the whole of Tajikistan in war. Moscow's Heavy Shadow tells the story of how this war came to be, and how it was grounded in the reform and collapse of the Soviet economy that came before.
--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, August 10, 2023

"In Blood and Ashes"

New from Oxford University Press: In Blood and Ashes: Curse Tablets and Binding Spells in Ancient Greece by Jessica L. Lamont.

About the book, from the publisher:
From binding spells and incantations to curse-writing rituals, magic pervaded the ancient Greek world. In Blood and Ashes provides the first historical study of the development and dissemination of ritualized curse practice from 750-250 BCE, documenting the cultural pressures that drove the use of curse tablets, charms, spells, and other private rites. This book expands our understanding of daily life in ancient communities, showing how individuals were making sense of the world and coping with conflict, vulnerability, competition, anxiety, desire, and loss, all while conjuring the gods and powers of the Underworld.

Bringing together epigraphic, literary, archaeological, and material evidence, Jessica L. Lamont reads between traditional histories of Archaic, Classical, and early Hellenistic Greece, drawing out new voices and new narratives to consider: here are the cooks, tavern keepers, garland weavers, helmsmen, barbers, and other persons who often slip through the cracks of ancient history. The texts and objects presented here offer glimpses of public and private lives across many centuries, illuminating the interplay of ritual and conflict-management strategies among citizens and slaves, men and women, pagans and Christians. Filled with new material and insights, Lamont's volume offers a groundbreaking perspective on ancient Greek social history and religion, highlighting the role of ritual in negotiating life's uncertainties.
--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

"Liberalism against Itself"

New from Yale University Press: Liberalism against Itself: Cold War Intellectuals and the Making of Our Times by Samuel Moyn.

About the book, from the publisher:
The Cold War roots of liberalism’s present crisis

By the middle of the twentieth century, many liberals looked glumly at the world modernity had brought about, with its devastating wars, rising totalitarianism, and permanent nuclear terror. They concluded that, far from offering a solution to these problems, the ideals of the Enlightenment, including emancipation and equality, had instead created them. The historian of political thought Samuel Moyn argues that the liberal intellectuals of the Cold War era—among them Isaiah Berlin, Gertrude Himmelfarb, Karl Popper, Judith Shklar, and Lionel Trilling—transformed liberalism but left a disastrous legacy for our time.

In his iconoclastic style, Moyn outlines how Cold War liberals redefined the ideals of their movement and renounced the moral core of the Enlightenment for a more dangerous philosophy: preserving individual liberty at all costs. In denouncing this stance, as well as the recent nostalgia for Cold War liberalism as a means to counter illiberal values, Moyn presents a timely call for a new emancipatory and egalitarian liberal philosophy—a path to undoing the damage of the Cold War and to ensuring the survival of liberalism.
Visit Samuel Moyn's website.

The Page 99 Test: The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History.

The Page 99 Test: Christian Human Rights.

The Page 99 Test: Humane.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Fake News in America"

New from Cambridge University Press: Fake News in America: Contested Meanings in the Post-Truth Era by Anthony R. DiMaggio.

About the book, from the publisher:
The term 'fake news' became a buzzword during Donald Trump's presidency, yet it is a term that means very different things to different people. This pioneering book provides a comprehensive examination of what Americans mean when they talk about fake news in contemporary politics, mass media, and societal discourse, and explores the various factors that contribute to this, such as the power of language, political parties, ideology, media, and socialization. By analysing a range of case studies across war, political corruption, climate change, conspiracy theories, electoral politics, and the Covid-19 pandemic, it demonstrates how fake news is a fundamentally contested phenomenon, and how its meaning varies depending on the person using the term, and the political context. It provides readers with tools to identify, talk about, and resist fake news, and emphasizes a need for education reform with an eye toward promoting critical thinking and information literacy.
Anthony R. DiMaggio is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Lehigh University.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

"Conceiving Christian America"

Coming soon from NYU Press: Conceiving Christian America: Embryo Adoption and Reproductive Politics by Risa Cromer.

About the book, from the publisher:
How embryo adoption advances the Christian Right’s political goals for creating a Christian nation

In 1997, a group of white pro-life evangelical Christians in the United States created the nation’s first embryo adoption program to “save” the thousands of frozen human embryos remaining from assisted reproduction procedures, which they contend are unborn children. While a small part of US fertility services, embryo adoption has played an outsized role in conservative politics, from high-profile battles over public investment in human embryonic stem cell research to the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Based on six years of ethnographic research with embryo adoption staff and participants, Risa Cromer uncovers how embryo adoption advances ambitious political goals for expanding the influence of conservative Christian values and power.

Conceiving Christian America is the first book on embryo adoption tracing how this powerful social movement draws on white saviorist tropes in their aims to reconceive personhood, with drastic consequences for reproductive rights and justice. Documenting the practices, narratives, and beliefs that move embryos from freezers to uteruses, this book wields anthropological wariness as a tool for confronting the multiple tactics of the Christian Right. Timely and provocative, Conceiving Christian America presents a bold and nuanced examination of a family-making process focused on conceiving a Christian nation.
Visit Risa Cromer's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, August 7, 2023

"Making Catholic America"

New from Cornell University Press: Making Catholic America: Religious Nationalism in the Gilded Age and Progressive Era by William S. Cossen.

About the book, from the publisher:
In Making Catholic America, William S. Cossen shows how Catholic men and women worked to prove themselves to be model American citizens in the decades between the Civil War and the Great Depression. Far from being outsiders in American history, Catholics took command of public life in the early twentieth century, claiming leadership in the growing American nation. They produced their own version of American history and claimed the power to remake the nation in their own image, arguing that they were the country's most faithful supporters of freedom and liberty and that their church had birthed American independence. Making Catholic America offers a new interpretation of American life in the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, demonstrating the surprising success of an often-embattled religious group in securing for itself a place in the national community and in profoundly altering what it meant to be an American in the modern world.
Visit William S. Cossen's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, August 6, 2023

"Thicker Than Water"

New from Oxford University Press: Thicker Than Water: A Social and Evolutionary Study of Iron Deficiency in Women by Elizabeth M. Miller.

About the book, from the publisher:
A powerful and critical investigation of iron deficiency in women throughout evolutionary history and in our current society

Women of the world are beset by a hidden hunger: iron deficiency. Up to 40% of reproductive-aged women across the globe have iron deficiency anemia, and it contributes to 20% of maternal deaths. Despite these dire statistics, women are not routinely screened for iron deficiency. Iron deficiency has been used as a tool to control, categorize, and even ignore women and their suffering. Biomedical remedies - mostly iron supplementation - are unequally and indifferently applied to global populations of women.

Thicker Than Water explores the reasons women are especially vulnerable, using evolutionary theory and social theory to understand the causes and consequences of iron deficiency in women. Contrary to popular belief, homeostasis protects the iron stores of women from iron loss during menstruation. Women's iron metabolism has evolved to balance the benefits and danger of iron, protecting vulnerable embryos against excessive iron at the cost of reduced iron stores for themselves. This balancing act is threatened when social circumstances prevent women from accessing the dietary iron they need.

Exploring how race, poverty, and gender are entangled with women's evolved bodies, Dr. Elizabeth M. Miller brings a new anthropological lens to this issue that deeply affects and even threatens women's lives. Ultimately, this book shows that women's evolved bodies - optimized to protect themselves and their offspring - are devastated by structural forces beyond their control.
--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, August 5, 2023

"Between War and the State"

New from Cornell University Press: Between War and the State: Civil Society in South Vietnam, 1954–1975 by Van Nguyen-Marshall.

About the book, from the publisher:
In Between War and the State, Van Nguyen-Marshall examines an array of voluntary activities, including mutual-help, professional, charitable, community development, student, women's, and rights organizations active in South Vietnam from 1954 to 1975. By bringing focus to the public lives of South Vietnamese people, Between War and the State challenges persistent stereotypes of South Vietnam as a place without society or agency. Such robust associational life underscores how an active civil society survived despite difficulties imposed by the war, government restrictions, economic hardship, and external political forces. These competing political forces, which included the United States, Western aid agencies, and Vietnamese communist agents, created a highly competitive arena wherein the South Vietnamese state did not have a monopoly on persuasive or coercive power. To maintain its influence, the state sometimes needed to accommodate groups and limit its use of violence. Civil society participants in South Vietnam leveraged their social connections, made alliances, appealed to the domestic and international public, and used street protests to voice their concerns, secure their interests, and carry out their activities.
--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, August 4, 2023

"Terms of Exclusion"

New from Oxford University Press: Terms of Exclusion: Rightful Citizenship Claims and the Construction of LGBT Political Identity by Zein Murib.

About the book, from the publisher:
LGBT political movements in the United States have been successful in expediting the growing acceptance of sexual and gender minorities and increasing public support for LGBT rights. However, not all segments of what has come to be called the "LGBT community" have benefited from these gains; even marginalized identity groups have internal hierarchies that determine whose political claims are heard or ignored.

In Terms of Exclusion, Zein Murib looks at the LGBT community in the US as it formed into an identity-based social and political group. Drawing on an extensive archive of movement documents and publications, Murib argues that the strategic use of "rightful citizenship claims," or the assertion that lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgender people are owed rights as citizens, created opportunities for the recognition of white, gender-normative, monogamously partnered gay men and lesbians at the expense of other community members. The rights wins made as a result of these opportunities are celebrated as evidence of progress, even while they simultaneously foreclose representation and political gains for those members whose cross-cutting identities challenge or elude the boundaries of normative citizenship.

By focusing on the effects of mobilization tactics seeking assimilation, Murib shows that within-group marginalization is not an accident of political expediency or due to relatively fewer resources, but rather a discursive strategy employed by political actors to make a group palatable to lawmakers and the general public. Terms of Exclusion thus constitutes a significant revision to existing scholarship on LGBT politics in political science and joins a growing body of interdisciplinary work that focuses on how a seemingly benign strategy of political movements foregrounding citizenship claims entails silence and erasure for the most precarious members of the group.
Visit Zein Murib's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, August 3, 2023

"The Cutting-Off Way"

New from The University of North Carolina Press: The Cutting-Off Way: Indigenous Warfare in Eastern North America, 1500–1800 by Wayne E. Lee.

About the book, from the publisher:
Incorporating archeology, anthropology, cartography, and Indigenous studies into military history, Wayne E. Lee has argued throughout his distinguished career that wars and warfare cannot be understood by a focus that rests solely on logistics, strategy, and operations. Fighting forces bring their own cultural traditions and values onto the battlefield. In this volume, Lee employs his "cutting-off way of war" (COWW) paradigm to recast Indigenous warfare in a framework of the lived realities of Native people rather than with regard to European and settler military strategies and practices.

Indigenous people lacked deep reserves of population or systems of coercive military recruitment and as such were wary of heavy casualties. Instead, Indigenous warriors sought to surprise their targets, and the size of the target varied with the size of the attacking force. A small war party might "cut off" individuals found getting water, wood, or out hunting, while a larger party might attempt to attack a whole town. Once revealed by its attack, the invading war party would flee before the defenders' reinforcements from nearby towns could organize. Sieges or battles were rare and fought mainly to save face or reputation. After discussing the COWW paradigm, including a deep look at Native logistics and their associated strategic flexibility, Lee demonstrates how the system worked and evolved in five subsequent chapters that detail intra-tribal and Indigenous-colonial warfare from pre-contact through the American Revolution.
The Page 99 Test: Barbarians and Brothers.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

"Ummah Yet Proletariat"

New from Oxford University Press: Ummah Yet Proletariat: Islam, Marxism, and the Making of the Indonesian Republic by Lin Hongxuan.

About the book, from the publisher:
From 1965 to 1966, at least 500,000 Indonesians were killed in military-directed violence that targeted suspected Communists. Muslim politicians justified the killings, arguing that Marxism posed an existential threat to all religions. Since then, the demonization of Marxism, as well as the presumed irreconcilability of Islam and Marxism, has permeated Indonesian society. Today, the Indonesian military and Islamic political parties regularly invoke the spectre of Marxism as an enduring threat that would destroy the republic if left unchecked.

In Ummah Yet Proletariat, Lin Hongxuan explores the relationship between Islam and Marxism in the Netherlands East Indies (NEI) and Indonesia from the publication of the first Communist periodical in 1915 to the beginning of the 1965-66 massacres. Lin demonstrates how, in contrast to state-driven narratives, Muslim identity and Marxist analytical frameworks coexisted in Indonesian minds, as well as how individuals' Islamic faith shaped their openness to Marxist ideas. Examining Indonesian-language print culture, including newspapers, books, pamphlets, memoirs, letters, novels, plays, and poetry, Lin shows how deeply embedded confluences of Islam and Marxism were in the Indonesian nationalist project. He argues that these confluences were the result of Indonesian participation in networks of intellectual exchange across Asia, Europe, and the Middle East, of Indonesians "translating" the world to Indonesia in an ambitious project of creative adaptation.
--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

"The Color of Homeschooling"

New from NYU Press: The Color of Homeschooling: How Inequality Shapes School Choice by Mahala Dyer Stewart.

About the book, from the publisher:
How race and racism shape middle-class families’ decisions to homeschool their children

While families of color make up 41 percent of homeschoolers in America, little is known about the racial dimensions of this alternate form of education. In The Color of Homeschooling, Mahala Dyer Stewart explores why this percentage has grown exponentially in the past twenty years, and reveals how families’ schooling decisions are heavily shaped by race, class, and gender.

Drawing from almost a hundred interviews with Black and white middle-class homeschooling and nonhomeschooling families, Stewart’s findings contradict many commonly held beliefs about the rationales for homeschooling. Rather than choosing to homeschool based on religious or political beliefs, many middle-class Black mothers explain their schooling choices as motivated by their concerns of racial discrimination in public schools and the school-to-prison pipeline. Indeed, these mothers often voiced concerns that their children would be mistreated by teachers, administrators, or students on account of their race, or that they would be excessively surveilled and policed. Conversely, middle-class white mothers had the privilege of not having to consider race in their decision-making process, opting for homeschooling because of concerns that traditional schools would not adequately cater to their child's behavioral or academic needs. While appearing nonracial, these same decisions often contributed to racial segregation.

The Color of Homeschooling is a timely and much-needed study on how homeschooling serves as a canary in the coal mine, highlighting the perils of school choice policies for reproducing, rather than correcting, long-standing race, class, and gender inequalities in America.
--Marshal Zeringue