New Books Network

Courtney J. Fung, “China and Intervention at the UN Security Council: Reconciling Status” (Oxford UP, 2019)
China is a veto-holding member of the UN Security Council yet Chinese officials have been skeptical of using the powers of the UN to pressure nations accused of human rights violations. The PRC has emphasized the norm of sovereignty and rejected external interference in its own internal affairs. Yet they... Read More
Wasana Wongsurawat, “The Crown and the Capitalists: The Ethnic Chinese and the Founding of the Thai Nation” (U Washington Press, 2019)
One can’t understand modern Thailand without understanding the role of the ethnic Chinese. And one can’t understand the role of the ethnic Chinese without understanding the history of their relationship to the Thai monarchy. This is exactly what Wasana Wongsurawat has documented in her new book, The Crown and the... Read More
Sarah Schneewind, “Shrines to Living Men in the Ming Political Cosmos” (Harvard Asia Center, 2018)
What recourse did you have in Ming China if your very excellent local official was leaving your area and moving on to a new jurisdiction? You could try to block his path, you could wail and tear your hair out – or you could house an image of him in... Read More
Tatiana Linkhoeva, “Revolution Goes East: Imperial Japan and Soviet Communism” (Cornell UP, 2020)
A century ago it wasn’t a virus whose spread was eliciting reactions around the world, but an idea. As Russia’s 1917 October Revolution distended itself across north Asia and reverberated globally, socialism acted – not unlike today’s pandemic – as a Rorschach test revealing divisions in societies and politics, and... Read More
Richard McBride II, “Doctrine and Practice in Medieval Korean Buddhism: The Collected Works of Ŭich’ŏn” (U Hawaii Press, 2016)
Today I talked to Richard McBride II about Doctrine and Practice in Medieval Korean Buddhism: The Collected Works of Ŭich’ŏn (University of Hawaii Press, 2016). The book is a comprehensive study of the Koryŏ (918-1392) Buddhist exegete, Ŭichŏn, that convey’s his life and work through letters, speeches, memorials, addresses, and... Read More
David Ambaras, “Japan’s Imperial Underworlds: Intimate Encounters at the Borders of Empire” (Cambridge UP, 2018)
Through a series of provocative case studies on mobility, transgression, and intimacy, David Ambaras’s Japan’s Imperial Underworlds: Intimate Encounters at the Borders of Empire (Cambridge University Press, 2018) interrogates the spatial and ideological formations of modern Japan in its first seven decades or so as a nation-state and empire, especially... Read More
Antony Dapiran, “City on Fire: The Fight for Hong Kong” (Scribe, 2020)
Hong Kong in 2019 was a city on fire. Anti-government protests, sparked by an ill-fated extradition bill sparked seven months of protest and civil unrest. Protestors clashed with police in the streets, in shopping malls, in residential buildings. Driven by Hong Kong’s young people with their ‘Be Water!’ strategy, the... Read More
Yue Hou, “The Private Sector in Public Office: Selective Property Rights in China” (Cambridge UP, 2020)
In China, roughly 60% of GDP and 80% of employment comes from the private sector – yet half of private entrepreneurs report that they faced expropriation of property by local governments. In her book, The Private Sector in Public Office: Selective Property Rights in China (Cambridge University PRess, 2020), Yue... Read More
Chris Courtney, “The Nature of Disaster in China: The 1931 Yangzi River Flood” (Cambridge UP, 2018)
For somewhat unfortunate reasons, many more people in the world now know about the existence and location of a city called Wuhan than was the case at the start of 2020. But most of these likely remain unaware of just how pivotal a role Wuhan has played in many events... Read More