New Books Network

Mary Fraser, “Policing the Home Front, 1914-1918: The Control of the British Population at War” (Routledge, 2018)
When Britain went to war in 1914, policemen throughout Great Britain found themselves called upon to perform an ever-increasing range of new tasks that reflected the expanded power of the British state in wartime. In Policing the Home Front, 1914-1918: The Control of the British Population at War (Routledge, 2018),... Read More
Stanley D. M. Carpenter, “Southern Gambit: Cornwallis and the British March to Yorktown” (U Oklahoma Press, 2019)
Charles Lord Cornwallis’s campaign through the southern American colonies came to an ignominious close on October 19, 1781, on an open field outside Yorktown, Virginia. At approximately noon, Cornwallis’s beleaguered soldiers, exhausted and low on provisions, emerged from behind their fortifications, laid down their arms, and delivered the earl’s sword... Read More
Natasha J. Lightfoot, “Troubling Freedom: Antigua and the Aftermath of British Emancipation” (Duke UP, 2015)
In Troubling Freedom: Antigua and the Aftermath of British Emancipation (Duke University Press, 2015), Natasha J. Lightfoot traces the ways Antiguans and Barbudans experienced freedom in the immediate years before and decades after British emancipation in 1834. With the exception of a handful of places, slavery ended immediately without a... Read More
Sheetal Chhabria, “Making the Modern Slum: The Power of Capital in Colonial Bombay” (U Washington Press, 2019)
In the 1870s, as colonial India witnessed some of the worst famines in its history where 6-10 million perished, observers watched in astonishment as famished people set out for the city of Bombay on foot in human caravans thousands of people long. Recently, images of a similar scale of deprivation... Read More
Alexander Rocklin, “The Regulation of Religion and the Making of Hinduism in Colonial Trinidad” (UNC Press, 2019)
The history of the Caribbean Island of Trinidad bears witness to an important interplay between the religious practices of peoples of South Asian and those of peoples of African descent, and in particular the manner in which colonial religious categories shaped that interplay. In The Regulation of Religion and the Making... Read More
Alexander Zevin, “Liberalism at Large: The World According to the Economist” (Verso, 2019)
The Economist is a curious publication. It always takes a point of view (as opposed to the all-the-news-that’s-fit-to-print approach). It maintains a uniform voice (editors and writers are typically handpicked from the same elite British universities, and rarely are there author bylines). And it has lasted a long time, originating... Read More
David A. Bateman, “Disenfranchising Democracy: Constructing the Electorate in the US, the UK, and France” (Cambridge UP, 2020)
David A. Bateman’s fascinating new book opens with a puzzle. In 19th-century America, why was mass democratization – abolishing property and tax qualifications – accompanied by the mass disenfranchisement of black, male citizens? The book highlights the importance of understanding democratization as both a process of extending political rights and... Read More
Julia Stephens, “Governing Islam: Law, Empire, and Secularism in Modern South Asia” (Cambridge UP, 2018)
As British colonial rulers expanded their control in South Asia legal resolutions were increasingly shaped by the English classification of social life. The definitional divide that structured the role of law in most cases was the line between what was deemed religious versus secular. In Governing Islam: Law, Empire, and Secularism... Read More
Caspar Melville, “It’s a London Thing: How Rare Groove, Acid House and Jungle Remapped the City” (Manchester UP, 2019)
How does music help us to understand the contemporary city? In It’s a London Thing: How Rare Groove, Acid House and Jungle Remapped the City (Manchester UP, 2019), Caspar Melville, co-chair of the Centre for Creative Industries, Media and Screen Studies at SOAS, University of London, explores three music scenes to... Read More