New Books Network

Houston A. Baker, “Betrayal: How Black Intellectuals Have Abandoned the Ideals of the Civil Rights Era” (Columbia UP, 2008)
In his new book Betrayal: How Black Intellectuals Have Abandoned the Ideals of the Civil Rights Era (Columbia University Press, 2008), Houston A. Baker makes the argument that many contemporary black public intellectuals, otherwise known as African American “academostars,” are self-serving individuals who distort the message of Dr. Martin Luther... Read More
Kimbrew McLeod and Peter DiCola, “Creative License: The Law and Culture of Digital Sampling” (Duke University Press, 2011)
One hallmark of important art, in any medium, is a thoughtful relation with artistic precursors. Every artist reckons with heroes and rivals, influences and nemeses, and the old work becomes a part of the new. In Adam Bradley’s seminal monograph on hip-hop lyrics, Book of Rhymes, legendary MC Mos Def... Read More
Robert J. Corber, “Cold War Femme: Lesbianism, National Identity, and Hollywood Cinema” (Duke University Press, 2011)
The study of non-heteronormative sexualities in the academy continues to be remarkably dynamic. Despite the usual attempts to harden the frame around this scholarship, it remains consistently exciting and surprising. Robert J. Corber is one of the reasons why. His books In the Name of National Security: Hitchcock, Homophobia, and... Read More
Eric Rath, “Food and Fantasy in Early Modern Japan” (University of California Press, 2010)
Cuisine in early modern Japan was experienced and negotiated through literature and ritual, and the uneaten or inedible was often as important as what was actually consumed. Eric Rath‘s recent book Food and Fantasy in Early Modern Japan (University of California Press, 2010) is a rich study of the culture,... Read More
Michael Neiberg, “Dance of the Furies: Europe and the Outbreak of World War I” (Harvard University Press, 2011)
As we close in on the centennial of the First World War, no doubt there will be a flood of new interpretations and “hidden histories” of the conflict. Many books will certainly promise much, but in the end deliver little. Fortunately this is not the case with Michael Neiberg‘s latest... Read More
Sanford Goldberg, “Relying on Others: An Essay in Epistemology” (Oxford UP, 2010)
In our attempts to know and understand the world around us, we inevitably rely on others to provide us with reliable testimony about facts and states of affairs to which we do not have access. What is the nature of this reliance? Do testifiers simply provide us with especially compelling... Read More
Siva Vaidhyanathan, “The Googlization of Everything (And Why We Should Worry)” (U. California Press, 2011)
In his new book The Googlization of Everything (And Why We Should Worry) (University of California Press, 2011), Siva Vaidhyanathan, professor of media studies and law at the University of Virginia, takes a close look at the powerful influence Google has on our society. He believes that by valuing popularity... Read More