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Over the past seventy years, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM, has evolved from a virtually unknown and little-used pamphlet to an imposing and comprehensive compendium of mental disorder. Its nearly 300 conditions have become the touchstones for the diagnoses that patients receive, students are taught, researchers …
 
In his painstakingly researched and splendid new book Sculpting the Self: Islam, Selfhood, and Human Flourishing (U Michigan Press, 2021), Muhammad Faruque charts and examines the multiplicity of ways in which the self and its moral flourishing have been discussed, debated, and examined in the Muslim intellectual tradition. The remarkable aspect of…
 
FASCISM...FRANCE. Two words/ideas that scholars have spent much time and energy debating in relationship to one another. Chris Millington's A History of Fascism in France: From the First World War to the National Front (Bloomsbury, 2019) is a work of synthesis that also draws on the author's own research for key examples and evidence to support its…
 
Mark Baker is an American journalist and travel writer. In the 1980s, he lived in Vienna and reported on the former Eastern bloc for Business International and The Economist Group. In 1991, he moved to Prague, where he worked as an editor for The Prague Post and co-founded The Globe Bookstore & Coffeehouse. He’s written 30 travel guidebooks for pub…
 
In Domestic Contradictions: Race and Gendered Citizenship from Reconstruction to Welfare Reform (Duke UP, 2021), Priya Kandaswamy analyzes how race, class, gender, and sexuality shaped welfare practices in the United States alongside the conflicting demands that this system imposed upon Black women. She turns to an often-neglected moment in welfare…
 
Once a powerful figure who reversed the disintegration of China and steered the country to Allied victory in World War II, Chiang Kai-shek fled into exile following his 1949 defeat in the Chinese civil war. As attention pivoted to Mao Zedong’s communist experiment, Chiang was relegated to the dustbin of history. In Chiang Kai-shek’s Politics of Sha…
 
The local community around the Nat Turner rebellion The 1831 Southampton Rebellion led by Nat Turner involved an entire community. Vanessa M. Holden rediscovers the women and children, free and enslaved, who lived in Southampton County before, during, and after the revolt. Mapping the region's multilayered human geography, Holden draws a fuller pic…
 
The new collection, Perspectives on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend: Nuanced Postnetwork Television (Syracuse University Press, 2021) by Amanda Konkle and Charles Burnetts explores the hit series with an off-putting title and a decidedly retrograde premise. The CW dramedy Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is a surprising choice for critical analysis. But, loyal viewers quic…
 
Computational models of urbanism—smart cities that use data-driven planning and algorithmic administration—promise to deliver new urban efficiencies and conveniences. Yet these models limit our understanding of what we can know about a city. A City Is Not a Computer: Other Urban Intelligences (Princeton UP, 2021) reveals how cities encompass myriad…
 
A Matter of Energy: Biology From First Principles is based on an in-depth filmed conversation between Howard Burton and Nick Lane, Professor of Evolutionary Biochemistry at University College London and bestselling author. After an inspiring exploration of Nick Lane’s career path, this wide-ranging conversation covers his bioenergetic view of early…
 
Today I talked to Maya Hu-Chan about her new book Saving Face: How to Preserve Dignity and Build Trust (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2020) There are so many sayings that involve the face, but perhaps none is more central to at least Asian culture than “saving face.” That’s because it represents retaining one’s dignity versus being embarrassed or hum…
 
Welcome to The Academic Life! In this episode you’ll hear about: Aviva Legatt’s journey into and through college Why she became an Ivy League college admissions officer What that job taught her about common application missteps How to determine which school is right for you and show them you’re right for it Month-by-month application checklist for …
 
One would think that comparing civilizations as far removed in time and space as Ancient Egypt and Ancient China might not reveal much. Yet Professor Tony Barbieri’s Ancient Egypt and Early China: State, Society, and Culture (University of Washington Press: 2021) gleans much from a deeply-researched comparison of political structures, diplomatic re…
 
At the Precipice: New Mexico's Changing Climate (U New Mexico Press, 2020) explores the question many of us have asked ourselves: What kind of world are we leaving to our children? The realities of climate change consume the media and keep us up at night worrying about the future. But in New Mexico and the larger Southwest, climate change has been …
 
The Koli community in Mumbai-which has been practicing fishing for centuries-has experienced rapid changes over the last few decades, in the forms of increased mechanization, export of fish to global markets, and the pressure of urbanization on their living and workspaces. The capitalist transformation in fishing has altered what was once a caste-b…
 
On Wandering Beaches (Pardes, 2020) is a novel of journeys, a novel of migration that conceals contradictions that summarize a whole world. Along the shores of Tel Aviv- Haifa-Acre-Nahariyya, all the contradictions are summarized: the Jewish nationalism versus the Arab nationalism, the individual principles versus the traditions of society, the hea…
 
Howard chats with Dang Qun, one of the three founding partners of Beijing-based MAD architects, about aesthetics, history, cultural distinctiveness and architecture's unique balance of the concrete and ethereal. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supp…
 
What claims could Jewish veterans make on the Nazi state by virtue of their having fought for Germany? How often did Germans treat Jewish veterans differently from Jewish men without military experience during the Weimar and Nazi periods? How did perceptions of masculinity and of Germanness intersect to shape attitudes and behaviors of Jewish veter…
 
Unnatural Disasters: Why Most Responses to Risk and Climate Change Fail But Some Succeed (Columbia UP, 2021) offers a new perspective on our most pressing environmental and social challenges, revealing the gaps between abstract concepts like sustainability, resilience, and innovation and the real-world experiences of people living at risk. Gonzalo …
 
The poet Shachar-Mario Mordechai was born 1975 in Haifa and he currently lives in Tel Aviv. He has published four volumes of poetry, all of which attracted critical attention. Mordechai is the 2017 recipient of the Prime-Minister’s award for creativity in poetry and the 2010 recipient of Tel Aviv Municipality's nationwide Poetry Competition. He was…
 
Western Jihadism: A Thirty Year History (Oxford University Press, 2021) tells the story of how Al Qaeda grew in the West. In forensic and compelling detail, Jytte Klausen traces how Islamist revolutionaries exiled in Europe and North America in the 1990s helped create and control one of the world's most impactful terrorist movements--and how, after…
 
Shawn Wilhite is author of this outstanding new commentary on one of the most important early Christian documents. We don't know who wrote the Didache, when it was written, or who it was written for, but Wilhite's work demonstrates how the text sets out teaching about ethics, sacraments and eschatology that seemed so authoritative that some readers…
 
Diplomatic relationships between Indigenous sovereigns and colonial and settler governments were defined by language. In some cases, cultural divides were narrowed using common metaphors. In others, objects such as wampum belts were employed as visual records of past agreements. Speeches were carefully recorded, copied, and cited in later negotiati…
 
There's a lot of hype about robots; some of it is scary and some of it utopian. In this accessible book, two robotics experts reveal the truth about what robots can and can't do, how they work, and what we can reasonably expect their future capabilities to be. It will not only make you think differently about the capabilities of robots; it will mak…
 
In the first complete English translation of a monumental 14th century Sanskrit philosophical text, the Jewel of Reflection on the Truth about Epistemology (Bloomsbury 2020), Stephen Phillips introduces modern readers to a classic of Indian philosophy. The author of the Jewel, Gaṅgeśa, is a comprehensive examination of epistemology and its interrel…
 
In 1884, sixty-eight prisoners convicted of terrorism and revolutionary activity were transferred to a new maximum-security prison at Shlissel'burg Fortress near St. Petersburg. Inhuman conditions in the prison caused severe mental and physical deterioration among the prisoners, and over half died. However, the survivors fought back to reform the p…
 
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