New Books Network

Oren Harman, “Evolutions: Fifteen Myths That Explain Our World” (FSG, 2018)
“There are only two ways to live your life,” said Albert Einstein, “One is as though nothing is a miracle; the other is as though everything is a miracle.” Oren Harman clearly agrees with Einstein’s sentiments. In Evolutions: Fifteen Myths That Explain Our World (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2018), Harman... Read More
Lucas Richert, “Strange Trips: Science, Culture, and the Regulation of Drugs” (McGill-Queens UP, 2019)
Strange Trips isn’t only the title of Dr. Lucas Richert’s new book; it’s also a good description of the journey substances take from the black market to the doctor’s black bag—and, sometimes, back to the black market again. In Strange Trips: Science, Culture, and the Regulation of Drugs (McGill-Queens University... Read More
Michitake Aso, “Rubber and the Making of Vietnam: An Ecological History, 1897-1975” (UNC Press, 2018)
How can the history of rubber be used as a way to understand the history of 20th-century Vietnam? In this episode of New Books in History, Michael G. Vann talks about Rubber and the Making of Vietnam: An Ecological History, 1897-1975 (University of North Carolina Press, 2018), with Michitake Aso,... Read More
Rafia Zafar, “Recipes for Respect: African American Meals and Meaning” (U Georgia Press, 2019)
In this this interview, Dr. Carrie Tippen talks with Rafia Zafar about her 2019 book Recipes for Respect: African American Meals and Meaning, from the University of Georgia Press. It’s part of the Southern Foodways Alliance Studies in Culture, People and Place series. The book contains 7 chapters, covering the... Read More
Maria Nugent, “Captain Cook Was Here” (Cambridge UP, 2009)
Maria Nugent talks about Aboriginal Australians’ first encounter with Captain Cook at Botany Bay, a violent meeting that has come to represent the origin story of Australia’s colonization by Europeans. The encounter itself has been symbolized by a bark shield – said to have been used by indigenous Australians defending... Read More
Jennifer L. Derr, “The Lived Nile: Environment, Disease, and Material Colonial Economy in Egypt” (Stanford UP, 2019)
In October 1902, the reservoir of the first Aswan Dam filled, and Egypt’s relationship with the Nile River forever changed. Flooding villages of historical northern Nubia and filling the irrigation canals that flowed from the river, the perennial Nile not only reshaped agriculture and the environment, but also Egypt’s colonial... Read More
Nicole C. Kirk, “Wanamaker’s Temple: The Business of Religion in an Iconic Department Store” (NYU Press, 2018)
“On Christmas Eve, 1911, John Wanamaker stood in the middle of his elaborately decorated department store building in Philadelphia as shoppers milled around him picking up last minute Christmas presents. On that night, as for years to come, the store was filled with the sound of Christmas carols sung by... Read More