background preloader

Misc. Vol. 02

Facebook Twitter

John Higginson, "Collective Violence and the Agrarian Origins of South African Apartheid, 1900-1948" ( John Higginson View on Amazon John Higginson, professor of history at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, is an acclaimed authority on South Africa and comparative labor politics, his two main fields of interest. Higginson’s latest work Collective Violence and the Agrarian Origins of South African Apartheid, 1900-1948 (Cambridge University Press, 2014) paints a comprehensive and captivating picture of the devastating path white supremacy forged in South Africa’s history.

To get at the very root of the story, Higginson transports readers to the rural countryside just after the South African War. His powerful, well-researched narration, accompanied by archival photographs, guides us through the tumultuous and violent years that followed. In our conversation, Professor Higginson eloquently unpacks the dark legacy of collective violence against South Africa’s rural population. Jerry F. Hough and Robin Grier, "The Long Process of Development" (Cambridge UP, 2014)

View on Amazon According to a popular saying, "Nothing succeeds like success. " As concerns what economists and political scientists call "development"–that is, progress towards liberty and prosperity–the saying seems to be true. As a general rule, the countries that were relatively free and relatively prosperous 100 years ago are the ones that are relatively free and relatively prosperous today. 200 years ago? Yes, more or less. 300 years ago? Well, probably. 400 years ago? A good argument could be made… Why? In their impressive and refreshing book The Long Process of Development: Building Markets and States in Pre-industrial England, Spain and their Colonies (Cambridge University Press, 2014), Jerry F.

Deborah Cowen, "The Deadly Life of Logistics" (University of Minnesota Press, 2014) Elizabeth Maddock Dillon, "New World Drama: The Performative Commons in the Atlantic World, 1649-1849" (Duke UP, 2014) Andrew Needham, "Power Lines: Phoenix and the Making of the Modern Southwest" (Princeton UP, 2014) Andrew Needham View on Amazon Last month, VICE NEWS released a short documentary about the Navajo Nation called "Cursed by Coal. " The images and stories confirm the title. "Seems like everything's just dying out here," says Navajo citizen Joe Allen. About four hundred miles southwest of the Four Corners Power Plant, where much of the coal stripped from Navajo land is burned for energy, stands the gleaming Chase Tower in downtown Phoenix, the tallest building in the state of Arizona. Connecting the two places is a maze of energy infrastructure, hidden and ignored when a Chase executive enters his air-conditioned top-floor office.

But it had to be made somewhere, as Needham vividly illustrates in his new book, Power Lines: Phoenix and the Making of the Modern Southwest (Princeton University Press, 2014). Jean Petrucelli, "Body-States" (Routledge, 2014) Jean Petrucelli View on Amazon Responding to a significant lacuna in psychoanalytic literature, Jean Petrucelli has put together an impressive book that approaches the eating-disordered patient from interpersonal and relational perspectives. Just as the papers within Body States: Interpersonal and Relational Perspectives on the Treatment of Eating Disorders (Routledge, 2014) animate the twin themes of dissociation and integration, so too do the authors illustrate how these forces shape interpersonal relationships, body-states, self-states, as well as, ultimately, the ability to functionally shift between selves. One may well agree with Philip Bromberg when he remarks in his Foreword, “Do not be fooled by the format.

Bringing together myriad voices, Dr. Thoughout the course of our conversation, she addresses not only the aforementioned points but many more, including the origins of eating-disorders as well as the role culture may play in transmitting body-states from mother to daughter. Ed Conway, "The Summit: Bretton Woods, 1944" (Pegasus Books, 2014) Ed Conway View on Amazon The functioning of the global economy remains as relevant a topic as ever before. Commentators continue to debate the causes and consequences of the financial crisis that hit the United States from 2007-2008. They also continue to ask questions such as: How long will China keep purchasing the treasury bonds that the U.S. government needs to help finance its ever-increasing debt?

Just how long can the dollar remain the global reserve currency before being replaced by another national currency or some sort of international monetary unit? Will the global flows of capital facilitated by "free-floating" exchange rates eventually undermine the healthy functioning of international economy and usher in another global depression? Unlike many accounts of the Bretton Woods Summit that paint the gathering as a dull economic conference, Conway's book succeeds in portraying the human drama of the event and the complex ways that personalities influenced the final agreements.

Kevin M. Schultz, "Buckley and Mailer: The Difficult Friendship that Shaped the Sixties" (W. W. Norton, 2015) Meryle Secrest, "Elsa Schiaparelli: A Biography" (Knopf, 2014) View on Amazon As Meryle Secrest notes in the introduction to her new book, Elsa Schiaparelli: A Biography (Knopf, 2014), "The most extraordinary fashion designer of the twentieth century is now just a name on a perfume bottle. " Were it not a book about Schiaparelli, it's a sentence many people might assume was being applied to Coco Chanel, for Chanel looms large as the fashion designer of the last century.

But Schiaparelli was, as Secrest reveals, more than a fashion designer: she was an artist. And, through her collaborations with Salvadore Dalí, Jean Cocteau, Man Ray and others, she was in the vanguard of surrealism and transformed women's fashions into an art form. Who was Schiap? It's hard to know. She was, also, an extraordinarily gifted artist who worked very, very hard. Jade Beall Photography. Ken Liu, "The Grace of Kings" (Saga Press, 2015) Ken Liu View on Amazon Short story writing, novel writing, and translating require a variety of skills and strengths that are hardly ever found in a single person. Ken Liu is one of those rare individuals who has them all. He is perhaps best known for short stories like The Paper Menagerie, which (according to his Wikipedia entry) was the first work of fiction to earn Nebula, Hugo, and World Fantasy Awards.

But this year he's making waves with two longer projects, which are the focus of his New Books interview: his translation of Cixin Liu's The Three-Body Problem and his debut novel The Grace of Kings. The Three-Body Problem has been a break-out success in China for Cixin Liu, who has won China's Galaxy Award for science fiction nine times. Ken Liu (who is not related to Cixin Liu) says sales numbers for science fiction in China would be the envy of American publishers, but Chinese publishers have traditionally considered it a niche market. Meg Elison, "The Book of the Unnamed Midwife" (Sybaritic Press, 2014) Meg Elison View on Amazon Despite the odds, Meg Elison did it. First, she finished the book she wanted to write.

Second, she found a publisher–without an agent. Third, she won the Philip K. Dick Award for Distinguished Science Fiction, a stunning achievement for a first-time author with a small, independent press. The Book of the Unnamed Midwife (Sybaritic Press, 2014) is set in the American West after an epidemic has killed all but a fraction of humanity. Communication falls apart too quickly for anyone to even know the name or nature of the illness that's destroyed civilization and made childbirth a fatal event for female survivors.

Elison was raised on stories about the apocalypse–the fire and brimstone kind. For the midwife, the apocalypse poses threats both dramatic and mundane. Elison is grateful for the editors at Sybaritic Press, who published her unagented manuscript. Fortunately, the Philip K. Related links: Ferrett Steinmetz, "Flex" (Angry Robot 2015) Ferrett Steinmetz View on Amazon Ferrett Steinmetz first built an audience as a blogger, penning provocative essays about "puns, politics and polyamory" (among other things) with titles like "Dear Daughter: I Hope You Have Awesome Sex" and "How Kids React To My Pretty Princess Nails. " In recent years, he has drawn accolades as an author of speculative fiction, writing short stories and earning a Nebula nomination in 2011 for his novelette Sauerkraut Station.

And now he is exploring new waters with the publication of his first novel, Flex (Angry Robot, 2015), which tells the story of a father desperate enough to use illegal magic to heal his badly burned daughter. The title refers to crystalized magic that, when snorted, gives the user the power to manipulate objects for which he or she has a particular affinity. Cat ladies become felinemancers.

The only problem is that with flex comes flux–a pushback from the universe that re-balances any magic act with disaster. On his approach to writing: Geraldo L. Cadava, "Standing on Common Ground: The Making of a Sunbelt Borderland" (Harvard UP, 2013) Ana Elizabeth Rosas, "Abrazando el Espíritu: Bracero Families Confront the U.S.-Mexico Border" (U of California Press, 2014) Ana Elizabeth Rosas View on Amazon The Emergency Farm Labor Program (a.k.a.

Bracero Program) was initiated in 1942 as a bilateral wartime agreement between the governments of the United States and Mexico. The program's initial objectives were two-fold, address labor shortages in U.S. agriculture, and promote the modernization of rural Mexican peasants through a type of worker training (i.e., contract labor) that would infuse the Mexican economy with cash remittances. In Abrazando el Espiritu: Bracero Families Confront the US-Mexico Border (University of California Press, 2014), Ana Elizabeth Rosas, Associate Professor of History and Chicano/Latino Studies at the University of California, Irvine, observes that the top down focus of previous scholarship has missed the Bracero Program's impact on families (women and children in particular) left behind by the husbands, fathers, and brothers that sojourned to the U.S. as contract laborers. Aram Sinnreich, "The Piracy Crusade" (U Massachusetts Press, 2013) Christian Fuchs, "Culture and Economy in the Age of Social Media" (Routledge, 2015)

Todd Wolfson, "Digital Rebellion: The Birth of the Cyber Left" (U Illinois Press, 2014) Christina Dunbar-Hester, "Low Power to the People: Pirates, Protest, and Politics in FM Radio Activism" (MIT Press, 2014) Christina Dunbar-Hester View on Amazon For the past few decades a major focus has been how the Internet, and Internet associated new media, allows for greater social and political participation globally. There is no disputing that the Internet has allowed for more participation, but the medium carries an inherent elitism and the need for expertise, which may limit accessibility. According to some advocates, old media like radio offer an alternative without the limitations of new media systems.

In her new book Low Power to the People: Pirates, Protest, and Politics in FM Radio Activism (MIT Press, 2014), Christina Dunbar-Hester, an assistant professor in the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University, explores the activist organization the Prometheus Project, and its role in advocating for greater community access to low power radio licenses. Ebrahim Moosa, "What is a Madrasa?" (U of North Carolina Press, 2015) Thom van Dooren, "Flight Ways: Life and Loss at the Edge of Extinction" (Columbia UP, 2014) Images trouvées -- ANOM Images. Haile Selassie and the United States of America. By the end of the Ethiopian and Italian war (1935-41), the Ethiopian economy was entirely exhausted and its natural resources plundered. Adding to the existing agony was the so-called “protected state” imposed on Ethiopia, by Winston Churchill. When it became apparent that the relationship between Ethiopia and Britain was leading to a deeper financial crisis, the Emperor Haile Selassie sought economic assistance from the new emerging global power, the USA.

ኢትዮጵያ ‘Ethiopia’, King Haile Selassie’s visit to USA and American and Ethiopian development corporations. Published by the United States information services 1954. The United States first provided economic and technical assistance to Ethiopia in 1944, however it was the signing of the September 1951 treaty of amity and economic relations that really strengthened the ties between them. Left: Kennedy: from Friday to Monday, a short biography of President J.F. Ethiopian cooking, however, is more an art than a science. Further reading. Avidly / Playing Hell in Charleston. Daniel Payne, Clementa Pinckney and the fight against White Supremacy The men and women massacred while studying the Bible the other night in the Emanuel A. M. E. Church were, in their own way, raising hell. That phrase might seem ill conceived or even disrespectful but it can be invoked here to honor their courage and the A. Daniel Payne was a young free man of color in Charleston who quietly started a school with three free black children during the day and, even more quietly, with three enslaved adults in the evening.

Payne sought to teach the natural sciences and encouraged children to collect and dissect small creatures under his guidance. As Payne recounted in his memoir, Recollections of Seventy Years, upon hearing their answers, the young Dr. What exactly was the threat that those children with their lidded glass jar for snakes represented? Payne was immediately forced to shut down his school. Daniel Payne, to the frustration of his foes, did not disappear.

FIRST IN THE FORCE | AP Archive. Sally Cabot Gunning, "Satucket Trilogy" (William Morrow, 2011) Pacific Strife: The Great Powers and their Political and Economic Rivalries in Asia and the Western Pacific 1870-1914, van Dijk. Torild Skard, "Women of Power" (Policy Press, 2015) Torild Skard View on Amazon Torild Skard is the author of Women of Power: Half a Century of Female Presidents and Prime Ministers Worldwide (Policy Press, 2015). Skard is a senior researcher in women's studies at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs in Oslo and is a former member of parliament and the first woman president of the Norwegian Upper House, among many other appointments. Skard takes on an enormously ambitious project in her recent book. She seeks out to examine the achievements and life stories of nearly the universe of the world's female political leaders from the 1960s up to the current era.

Organized both chronologically and geographically, Skard includes over 70 leaders in 50 countries, and uncovers a variety of paths to power, regional patterns and variation, and fascinating individual stories. Archived Miscellany. Archived Miscellany. Nick Sousanis, "Unflattening" (Harvard UP, 2015) Mightier Than The Scepter. Royal Ardor. In debating with myself the contents of your letters, I have been put to a great agony, not knowing how to understand them, whether to my disadvantage as shown in some places, or to my advantage as in others.

I beseech you now with all my heart definitely to let me know your whole mind as to the love between us. From a letter to Anne Boleyn. Henry VIII in 1509 married his dead brother’s wife Catherine of Aragon, whose seven pregnancies failed to produce for him a male heir. In 1533 he annulled the marriage and married Boleyn, dissolving ties with the papacy and becoming the head of the Church of England one year later. Her Majesty's Rat-Catcher.