Book of the Day/ British Studies

The Digital Lives of Black Women in Britain

Francesca Sobande

Hosted by Dave O'Brien
What are the possibilities and what are the inequalities of the digital world? In The Digital Lives of Black Women in Britain (Palgrave, 2020), Francesca Sobande, a lecturer in Digital Media Studies at Cardiff University explores the experiences of Black women as producers and as consumers of digital media. The book offers a rich combination of archival and interview material, along with a theoretical framework crossing boundaries of digital, media …
Digital Humanities

Furnace and Fugue

A Digital Edition of Michael Maier’s “Atalanta fugiens” (1618) with Scholarly Commentary

Donna Bilak and Tara Nummedal

Hosted by Molly Taylor-Poleskey
In 1618, on the eve of the Thirty Years’ War, the German alchemist and physician Michael Maier published Atalanta fugiens, an intriguing and complex musical alchemical emblem book designed to …

Once I Was You

A Memoir of Love and Hate in a Torn America

Maria Hinojosa

Hosted by David-James Gonzales
Maria Hinojosa is an award-winning journalist who, for nearly thirty years, has reported on stories and communities in America that often go ignored by the mainstream media—from tales of hope …

Of Bears and Ballots

An Alaskan Adventure in Small-Town Politics

Heather Lende

Hosted by Christina Gessler
Heather Lende was one of the thousands of women inspired to take a more active role in politics during the past few years. Though her entire campaign for assembly member …
Literary Studies

Against Demagogues

What Aristophanes Can Teach Us about the Perils of Populism and the Fate of Democracy

Robert Bartlett

Hosted by Andy Boyd
With Against Demagogues: What Aristophanes Can Teach Us about the Perils of Populism and the Fate of Democracy (University of California Press, 2020) Robert Bartlett provides a stirring argument for …
East Asian Studies

Trade Wars Are Class Wars

How Rising Inequality Distorts the Global Economy and Threatens International Peace

Michael Pettis and Matthew C. Klein

Hosted by Nicholas Gordon
Trade imbalances have long been a sticking point in international economics, most recently between the United States and China. The conversation about persistent trade imbalances tends to take on a …
Literary Studies

Black Land

Imperial Ethiopianism and African America

Nadia Nurhussein

Hosted by Sharika Crawford
In Black Land: Imperial Ethiopianism and African America (Princeton University Press, 2019), Nadia Nurhussein explores late nineteenth and twentieth century African American cultural engagement with and literary depictions of imperial …
World Affairs

The New Twenty Years' Crisis

A Critique of International Relations, 1999-2019

Philip Cunliffe

Hosted by Mark Klobas
At the end of the 20th century, the liberal international order appeared unassailable after its triumph over the authoritarian challenges of Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia. Twenty years later, however …
African American Studies

To Make the Wounded Whole

The African American Struggle Against HIV/AIDS

Dan Royles

Hosted by Claire Clark
In the decades since it was identified in 1981, HIV/AIDS has devastated African American communities. Members of those communities mobilized to fight the epidemic and its consequences from the beginning …
American Studies

Election Meltdown

Dirty Tricks, Distrust, and the Threat to American Democracy

Richard L. Hasen

Hosted by Arya Hariharan
As the 2020 presidential campaign begins to take shape, there is widespread distrust of the fairness and accuracy of American elections. In Election Meltdown: Dirty Tricks, Distrust, and the Threat …
Eastern European Studies

The Rebellion of the Daughters

Jewish Women Runaways in Habsburg Galicia

Rachel Manekin

Hosted by Zalman Newfield
In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, over three hundred young Jewish women from Orthodox, mostly Hasidic, homes in Western Galicia (now Poland) fled their communities and sought refuge …
Book of the Day/ East Asian Studies

Japanese War Crimes during World War II

Atrocity and the Psychology of Collective Violence

When you mention Japanese War crimes in World War Two, you’ll often get different responses from different generations. The oldest among us will talk about the Bataan Death March. Younger people, coming of age in the 1990s, will mention the Rape of Nanking or the comfort women forced into service by the Japanese army. Occasionally, someone will mention biological warfare. Frank Jacob has offered a valuable service by surveying Japanese …
Eastern European Studies

Useful Enemies

Islam and the Ottoman Empire in Western Political Thought, 1450-1750

Noel Malcolm

Hosted by Vladislav Lilic
Sir Noel Malcolm’s captivating new book, Useful Enemies: Islam and the Ottoman Empire in Western Political Thought, 1450-1750 (Oxford University Press, 2019), tells the story of Western European fascination with …

Seeking Virtue in Finance

Contributing to Society in a Conflicted Industry

JC de Swaan

Hosted by Daniel Peris
JC de Swaan does not shy from a challenge. In his new book, Seeking Virtue in Finance: Contributing to Society in a Conflicted Industry (Cambridge University Press, 2020), de Swaan …
Southeast Asian Studies

Lost Temples of the Jungle

A History of Mrauk-U with Dr. Bob Hudson

Thushara Dibley

Hosted by Thushara Dibley
Deep in the jungles of Myanmar lie the remains of an ancient kingdom, the 15th-century royal city of Mrauk-U. Located in the Bay of Bengal and separated from the rest …


How DNA Makes Us Who We Are

Robert Plomin

Hosted by Renee Garfinkel
Have you ever felt, “Oh my God, I’m turning into my mother (or father)!” ? Robert Plomin explains why that happens in Blueprint: How DNA Makes Us Who We Are …

The Kindness of Strangers

How a Selfish Ape Invented a New Moral Code

Michael E. McCullough

Hosted by Dan Hill
Why Give a Damn About Strangers? In his book The Kindness of Strangers: How a Selfish Ape Invented a New Moral Code (Basic Books, 2020), Michael E. McCullough explains. McCullough …
American Studies

The 'Silent Majority' Speech

Richard Nixon, the Vietnam War, and the Origins of the New Right

Scott Laderman

Hosted by Michael Vann
On November 3, 1969 Richard M. Nixon addressed the nation in what would come to be known as “The Silent Majority Speech”. In 32 minutes, the president promoted his plan …
Chinese Studies

Anxious China

Inner Revolution and Politics of Psychotherapy

Li Zhang

Hosted by Suvi Rautio
The breathless pace of China’s economic reform has brought about deep ruptures in socioeconomic structures and people’s inner landscape. Faced with increasing market-driven competition and profound social changes, more and …
Southeast Asian Studies

Miracles and Material Life

Rice, Ore, Traps and Guns in Islamic Malaya

Teren Sevea

Hosted by Kelvin Ng
In Miracles and Material Life: Rice, Ore, Traps and Guns in Islamic Malaya (Cambridge University Press), Teren Sevea reveals the economic, environmental and religious significance of Islamic miracle workers (pawangs) …
Book of the Day/ American Studies

The Angel in the Marketplace

Adwoman Jean Wade Rindlaub and the Selling of America

Ellen Wayland-Smith

Hosted by Lilian Calles Barger
Ellen Wayland-Smith is an associate professor of writing at University of Southern California. Her book The Angel in the Marketplace: Adwoman Jean Wade Rindlaub and the Selling of America (University of Chicago Press, 2020) follows the career of adwoman Jean Wade Rindlaub who in the mid-twentieth century created the advertising campaigns selling consumer products to the average American housewife. More than products, Rindlaub sold a dream of domesticity and prosperity …
South Asian Studies

Brewing Resistance

Indian Coffee House and the Emergency in Postcolonial India

Kristin Plys

Hosted by Sneha Annavarapu
In 1947, decolonization promised a better life for India's peasants, workers, students, Dalits, and religious minorities. By the 1970s, however, this promise had not yet been realized. Various groups fought …

Underground, Monroe, and the Mamalogues

Three Plays

Lisa B. Thompson

Hosted by Andy Boyd
Lisa B. Thompson is equally renowned as a scholar of African and African-American studies and as a playwright. Her latest book Underground, Monroe, and the Mamalogues: Three Plays (Northwestern University …
American Studies

Stars with Stripes

The Essential Partnership between the European Union and the United States

Anthony L. Gardner

Hosted by Tim Jones
If the US is – in the words of former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright – the "indispensible nation" then the economic, democratic and institutional alliance between the US and …
American Studies

Love in the Drug War

Selling Sex and Finding Jesus on the Mexico-US Border

Sara Luna

Hosted by Alize Arıcan
Sex, drugs, religion, and love are potent combinations in la zona, a regulated prostitution zone in the city of Reynosa, across the border from Hidalgo, Texas. During the years 200 …
Literary Studies

Getting it Published

A Guide for Scholars and Anyone Else Serious about Serious Books (3rd Edition)

William Germano

Hosted by Daniel Shea
When I put down Getting it Published: A Guide for Scholars and Anyone Else Serious about Serious Books (University of Chicago Press, 2016), I looked up and began to wonder …
East Asian Studies

Elusive Belonging

Marriage Immigrants and 'Multiculturalism' in Rural South Korea

Minjeong Kim

Hosted by Ann Choi
Studies on marriage migration often portray marriage migrants as victims of globalization and patriarchy. Although there are intersecting oppressions among female migrant workers, the tendency to conflate marriage migration with …
Chinese Studies

The Chinese Deathscape

Grave Reform in Modern China

Thomas S. Mullaney

Hosted by Luca Scholz
In the past decade alone, more than ten million corpses have been exhumed and reburied across the Chinese landscape. The campaign has transformed China's graveyards into sites of acute personal …
Southeast Asian Studies

A Dog Pissing at the Edge of a Path

Animal Metaphors in an Eastern Indonesian Society

Gregory Forth

Hosted by Akash Ondaatje
Gregory Forth, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at the University of Alberta and Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, has studied the Nage people of the eastern Indonesian island of …
Book of the Day/ Literary Studies

Sex, Love, and Letters

Writing Simone de Beauvoir

Judith G. Coffin

Hosted by Julia Gossard
When Judith G. Coffin discovered a virtually unexplored treasure trove of letters to Simone de Beauvoir from Beauvoir's international readers, it inspired Coffin to explore the intimate bond between the famed author and her reading public. This correspondence, at the heart of Sex, Love, and Letters: Writing Simone de Beauvoir (Cornell UP, 2020), immerses us in the tumultuous decades from the late 1940s to the 1970s—from the painful aftermath of …
African Studies

The Swahili World

Stephanie Wynne-Jones and Adria LaViolette

Hosted by Jenny Peruski
The Swahili World (Routledge, 2017) presents the fascinating story of a major world civilization, exploring the archaeology, history, linguistics, and anthropology of the eastern coast of Africa. It covers a …
Eastern European Studies

Bowling for Communism

Urban Ingenuity at the End of East Germany

Andrew Demshuk

Hosted by Steven Seegel
Bowling for Communism: Urban Ingenuity at the End of East Germany (Cornell University Press, 2020) illuminates how civic life functioned in Leipzig, East Germany's second-largest city, on the eve of …
Literary Studies

Transmedia Adaptation in the Nineteenth Century

Lissette Lopez Szwydky

Hosted by Miranda Corcoran
In this episode of New Books in Literary Studies we speak with Lissette Lopez Szwydky, author of the new book Transmedia Adaptation in the Nineteenth Century (Ohio State UP, 2020) …

Augusta Browne

Composer and Woman of Letters in Nineteenth-Century America

Bonny H. Miller

Hosted by Kristen Turner
Born around 1820, Augusta Browne was a pianist, organist, composer, music pedagogue, entrepreneur, music critic, and writer. In Augusta Browne: Composer and Woman of Letters in Nineteenth-Century America (University of …
South Asian Studies

The Authority of Female Speech in Indian Goddess Traditions

Anway Mukhopadhyay

Hosted by Raj Balkaran
Contemporary debates on “mansplaining” foreground the authority enjoyed by male speech, and highlight the way it projects listening as the responsibility of the dominated, and speech as the privilege of …

To Live and Defy in LA

How Gangsta Rap Changed America

Felicia Angeja Viator

Hosted by Stephen Hausmann
In 1985, Greg Mack, a DJ working for Los Angeles radio station KDAY, played a song that sounded like nothing else on West Coast airwaves: Toddy Tee’s “The Batteram,” a …
Performing Arts

Radical Ritual

How Burning Man Changed the World

Neil Shister

Hosted by Emily Ruth Allen
Written from Neil Shister’s perspective as a journalist, student of American culture, and six-time participant in Burning Man, Radical Ritual: How Burning Man Changed the World (Counterpoint, 2019) presents the …

The Medicalization of Marijuana

Legitimacy, Stigma, and the Patient Experience

Michelle Newhart and William Dolphin

Hosted by Lucas Richert
Medical marijuana laws have spread across the U.S. to all but a handful of states. Yet, eighty years of social stigma and federal prohibition creates dilemmas for patients who participate …
Spiritual Practice and Mindfulness

Growing Young

How Friendship, Optimism, and Kindness Can Help You Live to 100

Marta Zaraska

Hosted by Eric LeMay
Today I interview Marta Zaraska about her book Growing Young: How Friendship, Optimism, and Kindness Can Help You Live to 100 (Appetite/Random House, 2020). Now you may be thinking to …
Book of the Day/ Gender Studies

Gender and Our Brains

How New Neuroscience Explodes the Myths of the Male and Female Minds

For decades if not centuries, science has backed up society’s simple dictum that men and women are hardwired differently, that the world is divided by two different kinds of brains—male and female. However, new research in neuroimaging suggests that this is little more than “neurotrash.” In Gender and Our Brains: How New Neuroscience Explodes the Myths of the Male and Female Minds (Vintage, 2020), acclaimed professor of neuroimaging, Gina Rippon …
French Studies

Mobilizing Memory

The Great War and the Language of Politics in Colonial Algeria, 1918-1939

Dónal Hassett

Hosted by Roxanne Panchasi
Dónal Hassett’s Mobilizing Memory: The Great War and the Language of Politics in Colonial Algeria, 1918-1939 (Oxford UP, 2019) is at once a history of colonialism and of the “Great …

Unborn Human Life and Fundamental Rights

Leading Constitutional Cases Under Scrutiny

William L. Saunders

Hosted by Hope J. Leman
What is “unborn human life” and what kind of court cases, not only in the US but abroad, illuminate the matter from the standpoint of the many fields in which …
African American Studies

The Murder of Emmett Till

A Graphic History

Karlos K. Hill

Hosted by Michael Vann
The image of Emmett Till’s open coffin, revealing the 14-year old’s horrifically disfigured face, is one of the most heart-wrenching images of the Civil Rights Era. The Chicago teenager was …
World Affairs

Fertility and Faith

The Demographic Revolution and the Transformation of World Religions

Philip Jenkins

Hosted by Carrie Lynn Evans
In his new book Fertility and Faith: The Demographic Revolution and the Transformation of World Religions (Baylor University Press, 2020), Philip Jenkins maps the demographic revolution that has taken hold …

Death of the Chinese Field Hands

Anne Louise Bannon

Hosted by Galit Gottlieb
When Anne Louise Bannon heard her husband, then archivist for the City of Los Angeles, speak about the how early Angelenos dug a large ditch (a zanja) to cull water …
Middle Eastern Studies

Crafting Masculine Selves

Culture, War, and Psychodynamics in Afghanistan

Andrea Chiovenda

Hosted by Jeffrey Bristol
Against the backdrop of four decades of continuous conflict in Afghanistan, the Pashtun male protagonists of this book carry out their daily effort to internally negotiate, adjust (if at all) …
American Studies

Tornado God

American Religion and Violent Weather

Peter J. Thuesen

Hosted by Lane Davis
In Tornado God: American Religion and Violent Weather (Oxford UP, 2020), Peter J. Thuesen links the “numinous” religious experiences of Americans as they experienced the uniquely destructive weather phenomenon of …

Louis Kahn

Architecture as Philosophy

John Lobell

Hosted by Bryan Toepfer
For everyone interested in the enduring appeal of Louis Kahn, this book demonstrates that a close look at how Kahn put his buildings together will reveal a deeply felt philosophy …

Bodies and Social Rhythms

Navigating Unconscious Vulnerability and Emotional Fluidity

Steven H. Knoblauch

Hosted by Eugenio Duarte
Psychotherapy tends to be thought of as a verbal enterprise, wherein participants speak and construct meaning through words. However, much goes on between patient and therapist at an embodied, nonverbal …
American Studies

Asian American Basketball

A Century of Sport, Community and Culture

Joel S. Franks

Hosted by Jorge Iber
When Jeremy Lin shot (pardon the pun) to stardom with his unexpected scoring run with the New York Knickerbockers in 2012 many aficionados of basketball were surprised that an Asian …

A Song from Faraway

Deni Ellis Béchard

Hosted by Galit Gottlieb
A young man visits his half-brother in Vancouver and steals a book that changes his life. An archeology student is befriended and brought to Iraq by a brother and sister …
Book of the Day/ British Studies

The Formation of the Colonial State in India

Scribes, Paper and Taxes, 1760-1860

Hayden J. Bellenoit

Hosted by Charles Prior
When he appeared before the British House of Commons in the wake of the Stamp Act crisis, Benjamin Franklin reminded his audience that the American colonies were governed ‘at the expense only of a little pen, ink, and paper; they were led by a thread’. As the British sought to come to grips with an expanded American empire in territories ceded by France at the end of the Seven Years …
American Studies

Defender in Chief

Donald Trump’s Fight for Presidential Power

John Yoo

Hosted by Ian Drake
John Yoo, the Emanual S. Heller Professor of Law at the University of California Berkeley School of Law, has written what he terms a surprising defense of the actions of …
American Studies

Liberty From All Masters

The New American Autocracy vs. the Will of the People

Barry C. Lynn

Hosted by Arya Hariharan
Americans are obsessed with liberty, mad about liberty. On any day, we can tune into arguments about how much liberty we need to buy a gun or get an abortion …
Chinese Studies

Has China Won?

The Chinese Challenge to American Primacy

Kishore Mahbubani

Hosted by Nicholas Gordon
As China grows into a major regional and global power, there are many questions about what this means for the international system. Does China threaten the United States? Does Washington …
Performing Arts

The Great White Way

Race and the Broadway Musical, 2nd Edition

Warren Hoffman

Hosted by Andy Boyd
Warren Hoffman’s The Great White Way: Race and the Broadway Musical, 2nd edition (Rutgers UP, 2020) explores the ways that race and racism have shaped the American musical from Show …
Literary Studies

How Dead Languages Work

Coulter George

Hosted by Malcolm Keating
After reading How Dead Languages Work (Oxford University Press 2020), Coulter George hopes you might decide to learn a bit of ancient Greek or Sanskrit, or maybe dabble in a …
American Studies

Wheels of Courage

How Paralyzed Veterans from World War II Invented Wheelchair Sports, Fought for Disability Rights, and Inspired a Nation

David Davis

Hosted by Paul Knepper
Out of the carnage of World War II comes an unforgettable tale about defying the odds and finding hope in the most harrowing of circumstances. Wheels of Courage: How Paralyzed …

A Road to Nowhere

The Idea of Progress and Its Critics

Matthew W. Slaboch

Hosted by Hope J. Leman
Has history worked out the way so many have hoped? What did “progress” used to look like and who could possibly have been against it? What areas of human life …
American Studies

Democracy Without Journalism?

Confronting the Misinformation Society

Victor Pickard

Hosted by Bruce Wark
"Few freedoms in the United States are as cherished as freedom of the press." So begins Chapter One of Democracy Without Journalism?: Confronting the Misinformation Society (Oxford University Press, 2020) …
British Studies


Identity, Diversity and the Reshaping of British Politics

Maria Sobolewska and Robert Ford

Hosted by Dave O'Brien
What are the identity conflicts that define contemporary society? In Brexitland: Identity, Diversity and the Reshaping of British Politics (Cambridge UP, 2020) Maria Sobolewska and Robert Ford, professors of politics …
East Asian Studies

Jesus Loves Japan

Return Migration and Global Pentecostalism in a Brazilian Diaspora

Suma Ikeuchi

Hosted by Daigengna Duoer
In 1990, the Japanese government introduced the Nikkei-jin (Japanese descendant) visa and since then it has attracted more than 190,000 Nikkei Brazilian nationals to Japan. In Jesus Loves Japan: Return …
Book of the Day/ Science Fiction

Ring Shout

P. Djèlí Clark

Hosted by Rob Wolf
P. Djèlí Clark’s new novella, Ring Shout (Tordotcom, 2020) is a fantasy built around an ugly moment in American history—the emergence of the second Ku Klux Klan in the early 20th century. The story follows three monster hunters: Maryse Boudreaux, who wields a magic sword; Chef, who had previously disguised herself as a man to serve with the Harlem Hellfighters during World War I; and Sadie, a sharpshooter who calls …

It’s Not Always Depression

Working the Change Triangle to Listen to the Body, Discover Core Emotions, and Connect to Your Authentic Self

Hilary Jacobs Hendel

Hosted by Eugenio Duarte
Depression and anxiety are not what you think they are, according to my guest. Often thought of as presenting problems in their own right, it might make more sense to …
Middle Eastern Studies

Tell This in my Memory

Stories of Enslavement from Egypt, Sudan, and the Ottoman Empire

Eve M. Troutt Powell

Hosted by Yasmine al-Bastaki
Tell This in my Memory : Stories of Enslavement from Egypt, Sudan, and the Ottoman Empire (Stanford University Press) is a study of slavery, liberation, and remembrance between the nineteenth …
American Studies

Dead Tree Media

Manufacturing the Newspaper in Twentieth-Century North America

Michael Stamm

Hosted by Dexter Fergie
Michael Stamm’s book Dead Tree Media: Manufacturing the Newspaper in Twentieth-Century North America (Johns Hopkins UP, 2018) begins with the simple but thought-provoking premise that, not too long ago, newspapers …
Literary Studies

Transforming Ethos

Place and the Material in Rhetoric and Writing

Rosanne Carlo

Hosted by Daniel Shea
Transforming Ethos: Place and the Material in Rhetoric and Writing (Utah State UP, 2020) approaches writing studies from the rhetorical flank, the flank which, for many, is the only flank …

Mapping Crisis

Participation, Datafication and Humanitarianism in the Age of Digital Mapping

Doug Specht

Hosted by Alexandra Ortolja-Baird
The digital age has thrown questions of representation, participation and humanitarianism back to the fore, as machine learning, algorithms and big data centres take over the process of mapping the …
American Studies

America in the World

A History of U.S. Diplomacy and Foreign Policy

Robert Zoellick

Hosted by Charles Coutinho
Ranging from Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, and Thomas Jefferson to Henry Kissinger, Ronald Reagan, and James Baker, America in the World: A History of U.S. Diplomacy and Foreign Policy (Twelve …
American Studies

Bleeding Out

The Devastating Consequences of Urban Violence--and a Bold New Plan for Peace in the Streets

Thomas Abt

Hosted by Dan Hill
How do we promote peace in the streets? In his new book Bleeding Out: The Devastating Consequences of Urban Violence--and a Bold New Plan for Peace in the Streets (Basic …