New Books Network

Lara Harb, “Arabic Poetics: Aesthetic Experience in Classical Arabic Literature” (Cambridge UP, 2020)
Lara Harb’s Arabic Poetics: Aesthetic Experience in Classical Arabic Literature (Cambridge University Press, 2020) is a delightful and formidable study on the details and development of poetics and aesthetics in medieval Arabic literature. The central theme of this splendid book centers on the emergence of the evocation of wonder as... Read More
Fadi A. Bardawil, “Revolution and Disenchantment: Arab Marxism and the Binds of Emancipation” (Duke UP, 2020)
In his Theses on Feuerbach, Marx famously claimed that philosophers had previously only attempted to interpret the world; the point, however, was to change it. In the 20th century, no philosopher had as great an effect on the world than Marx, with various intellectual and political movements across the world... Read More
Begüm Adalet, “Hotels and Highways: The Construction of Modernization Theory in Cold War Turkey” (Stanford UP, 2018)
During the opening decades of the Cold War, US policymakers and academics used modernization theory to provide an alternative model to communism for improving living standards. As Begüm Adalet demonstrates, Turkey was both a model case of elite-led modernization and a laboratory for development projects that could then be exported... Read More
Gabriel Said Reynolds, “Allah: God in the Qur’an” (Yale UP, 2020)
In Allah: God in the Qur’an (Yale University Press, 2020), Gabriel Said Reynolds argues that contrary to many scholarly and popular claims about the God of the Qur’an as either merciful or vengeful, God is in fact both. He suggests that God’s nature is a mystery and the descriptions of God, as... Read More
James C. Scott, “Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States” (Yale UP, 2017)
We are schooled to believe that states formed more or less synchronously with settlement and agriculture. In Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States (Yale University Press, 2017), James C. Scott asks us to question this belief. The evidence, he says, is simply not on the side... Read More
Dana El Kurd, “Polarized and Demobilized: Legacies of Authoritarianism in Palestine” (Oxford UP, 2020)
What demobilizes a once mobilized society? How does international involvement amplify or suppress these dynamics? In Polarized and Demobilized: Legacies of Authoritarianism in Palestine (Oxford University Press, 2020), Dana El Kurd’s new book uses a case study to interrogate how the Palestinian Authority – as an indigenous institution – more... Read More
M’hamed Oualdi, “A Slave between Empires: A Transimperial History of North Africa” (Columbia UP, 2020)
In light of the profound physical and mental traumas of colonization endured by North Africans, historians of recent decades have primarily concentrated their studies of North Africa on colonial violence, domination, and shock. The choice is an understandable one. But in his new monograph, A Slave between Empires: A Transimperial... Read More
Yaacov Yadgar, “Israel’s Jewish Identity Crisis: State and Politics in the Middle East” (Cambridge UP, 2020)
Yaacov Yadgar discusses his new book, Israel’s Jewish Identity Crisis: State and Politics in the Middle East (Cambridge University Press, 2020) with Peter Bergamin. An important and topical contribution to the field of Middle East studies, this innovative, provocative, and timely study tackles head-on the main assumptions of the foundation of... Read More
Sarah M. A. Gualtieri, “Arab Routes: Pathways to Syrian California” (Stanford UP, 2019)
In her latest book, Arab Routes: Pathways to Syrian California(Stanford University Press, 2019), Sarah M. A. Gualtieri uncovers the dynamic and complex stories of Arabic-speaking migrant communities who came to call Southern California home. Rather than a simple story of departure and arrival, Gualtieri traces the surprising twists and turns of Syrian... Read More