New Books Network

Lydia Barnett, “After the Flood: Imagining the Global Environment in Early Modern Europe” (Johns Hopkins UP, 2019)
Many centuries before the emergence of the scientific consensus on climate change, people began to imagine the existence of a global environment: a natural system capable of changing humans and of being changed by them. In After the Flood: Imagining the Global Environment in Early Modern Europe (Johns Hopkins University... Read More
Joe Miller, “US of AA: How the Twelve Steps Hijacked the Science of Alcoholism” (Chicago Review Press, 2019)
In the aftermath of Prohibition, America’s top scientists joined forces with members of a new group, called Alcoholics Anonymous, and put their clout behind a campaign to convince the nation that alcoholism was a disease rather than a moral failing. Their campaign spanned decades, and from it grew a multimillion-dollar... Read More
Alys Eve Weinbaum, “The Afterlife of Reproductive Slavery: Biocapitalism and Black Feminism’s Philosophy of History” (Duke UP, 2019)
In The Afterlife of Reproductive Slavery: Biocapitalism and Black Feminism’s Philosophy of History (Duke University Press, 2019), University of Washington Professor of English Alys Eve Weinbaum investigates the continuing resonances of Atlantic slavery in the cultures and politics of human reproduction that characterize contemporary biocapitalism. As a form of racial... Read More
Leor Halevi, “Modern Things on Trial: Islam’s Global and Material Reformation in the Age of Rida, 1865-1935” (Columbia UP, 2019)
How did Muslims respond to foreign goods in an age characterized by global exchange and European imperial expansion? What sort of legal reasoning did scholars apply in order to appropriate – or reject – items like the synthetic toothbrush, toilet paper, gramophones, photographs, railway lines, banknotes, hats, and other commodities?... Read More
Raj Patel, “A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things” (U California Press, 2017)
Award winning activist and researcher Raj Patel has teamed up with innovative environmental historian and historical geographer Jason W. Moore to produce an accessible book which provides historical explanations for the world ecological crises and the global crisis in capitalism. Using the framework of “cheapness,” A History of the World... Read More
Matthew D. O’Hara, “The History of the Future in Colonial Mexico” (Yale UP, 2018)
Latin America – especially colonial Latin America – is not particularly known for futurism.  For popular audiences, the region’s history likely evokes images of book burning, the Inquisition, and other symbols of orthodoxy and fatalism.  Specialists too tend to associate Latin America with a deep sense of historicism:  the weight... Read More
Christopher Lovins, “King Chŏngjo: An Enlightened Despot in Early Modern Korea” (SUNY Press, 2019)
Though traditionally regarded as a monarch who failed to arrest the gradual decline of his kingdom, the Korean king Chŏngjo has benefited in recent decades from a wave of new scholarship which has reassessed both his reign and his role in Korean history. The latest to do so is Christopher... Read More