New Books Network

Karl Gerth, “Unending Capitalism: How Consumerism Negated China’s Communist Revolution” (Cambridge UP, 2020)
Karl Gerth’s new book, Unending Capitalism: How Consumerism Negated China’s Communist Revolution (Cambridge University Press, 2020) details how the state created brands, promoted and advertised particular products, set up department stores, and facilitated the promotion of certain luxury consumer products (notably wristwatches, bicycles, and sewing machines)—all in the Mao era. Though... Read More
François-Xavier Fauvelle, “The Golden Rhinoceros: Histories of the African Middle Ages” (Princeton UP, 2018)
What are the African Middle Ages? A place, certainly, and a time period, evidently. But also a “documentary regime,” argues François-Xavier Fauvelle. How do we reconstruct these centuries of the African past in the face of a daunting lack of sources? In thirty-four thoughtful vignettes, Fauvelle takes us along for... Read More
Donald Ostrowski, “Who Wrote That?: Authorship Controversies from Moses to Sholokhov” (NIUP, 2020)
Who Wrote That?: Authorship Controversies from Moses to Sholokhov (Northern Illinois University Press) is Harvard historian Donald Ostrowski’s sustained reflection on what we can learn from comparison of authorship controversies. Ostrowski covers nine different cases of disputed authorship, from the Shakespeare canon, to the letters between the Russian Prince Kurbskii... Read More
Gregory A. Daddis, “Pulp Vietnam: War and Gender in Cold War Men’s Adventure Magazines” (Cambridge UP, 2020)
In his compelling evaluation of Cold War popular culture, Pulp Vietnam: War and Gender in Cold War Men’s Adventure Magazines (Cambridge UP, 2020), Gregory Daddis explores how men’s adventure magazines helped shape the attitudes of young, working-class Americans, the same men who fought and served in the long and bitter... Read More
Giorgio Bertellini, “The Divo and the Duce: Promoting Film Stardom and the Political Leadership in 1920s America” (U California Press, 2019)
In 1927, the Hollywood stars (and spouses), Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr stood outside their California home, arms raised in fascist salute. The photo’s caption, referencing the couple’s trip to Rome the previous year, informs fans that the couple “greet guests at their beach camp in true Italian style.”... Read More
Lorenz M. Lüthi, “Cold Wars: Asia, the Middle East, Europe” (Cambridge UP, 2020)
What was the Cold War that shook world politics for the second half of the twentieth century? Standard narratives focus on Soviet-American rivalry as if the superpowers were the exclusive driving forces of the international system. Lorenz M. Lüthi, Associate Professor of History at McGill University in his new book Cold... Read More
Chhaya Goswami, “Globalization Before Its Time: The Gujarati Merchants from Kachchh” (PRH India, 2016)
Chhaya Goswami’s Globalization Before Its Time: The Gujarati Merchants from Kachchh (Penguin Random House India) asks: How did the Kachchhi traders build on the Gujarat Advantage? In the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, during the dying days of the Mughal empire, merchants from Kachchh established a flourishing overseas trade. Building... Read More
Stephanie Newell, “Histories of Dirt: Media and Urban Life in Colonial and Postcolonial Lagos” (Duke UP, 2019)
Stephanie Newell, Professor of English at Yale University, came to this project, which explores the concept of “dirt” and how this idea is used and applied to people and spaces, in a rather indirect way, having read the memoirs and journals of merchant traders – particularly the white British traders... Read More
James L. Nolan, Jr., “Atomic Doctors: Conscience and Complicity at the Dawn of the Nuclear Age” (Harvard UP, 2020)
After his father died, James L. Nolan, Jr., took possession of a box of private family materials. To his surprise, the small secret archive contained a treasure trove of information about his grandfather’s role as a doctor in the Manhattan Project. Dr. Nolan, it turned out, had been a significant figure.... Read More
Alison Games, “Inventing the English Massacre: Amboyna in History and Memory” (Oxford UP, 2020
My Lai, Wounded Knee, Sandy Hook: the place names evoke grief and horror, each the site of a massacre. Massacres-the mass slaughter of people-might seem as old as time, but the word itself is not. It worked its way into the English language in the late sixteenth century, and ultimately... Read More