New Books Network

Paul Roquet, “Ambient Media: Japanese Atmospheres of Self” (U. of Minnesota Press, 2016)
Paul Roquet’s wonderful new book begins with an offering of jellyfish and proceeds to teach us how to read the air. Ambient Media: Japanese Atmospheres of Self (University of Minnesota Press, 2016) looks carefully at the phenomenon of ambient subjectivication or, the emergence of self with and through ambient media... Read More
Mark R. E. Meulenbeld, “Demonic Warfare: Daoism, Territorial Networks, and the History of a Ming Novel” (U. of Hawaii Press, 2015)
Mark R. E. Meulenbeld’s new book looks closely at the relationship between vernacular novels and vernacular rituals in Ming China. Focusing on a particular novel called Canonization of the Gods (Fengshen yanyi), and on a particular set of ritual practices known as Thunder Ritual, Demonic Warfare: Daoism, Territorial Networks, and... Read More
Phaedra Daipha, “Masters of Uncertainty: Weather Forecasters and the Quest for Ground Truth” (U. of Chicago Press, 2015)
Phaedra Daipha’s thoughtful new book uses a careful sociological study of a particular community of weather forecasters to develop a sociology of decision making. Based on fieldwork conducted over five years at a local office of the National Weather Service, Masters of Uncertainty: Weather Forecasters and the Quest for Ground... Read More
Nick Cheesman, “Opposing the Rule of Law: How Myanmar’s Courts Make Law and Order” (Cambridge UP, 2016)
Working against the tendency to conflate the analytic categories “rule of law,” and “law and order,” Nick Cheesman’s Opposing the Rule of Law: How Myanmar’s Courts Make Law and Order (Cambridge University Press, 2015) makes a significant two-fold contribution, one as “the first serious attempt for half a century to... Read More
Anand Pandian, “Reel World: An Anthropology of Creation” (Duke UP, 2015)
Do we live in a real world or a ‘reel world,’ in which life begins to feel like a film? In this wonderful ethnography of the Tamil film industry, Anand Pandian explores topics as grand, rich and timeless as those explored in film itself love, desire, rhythm, wonder as a... Read More
Bard Kartveit, “Dilemmas of Attachment: Identity and Belonging among Palestinian Christians” (Brill, 2014)
Bard Kartveit‘s Dilemmas of Attachment: Identity and Belonging among Palestinian Christians (Brill, 2014) is an outstanding book, which carefully describes the constraints faced by Palestinian Christians, particularly in the unique context of the Bethlehem area, painting a nuanced picture of the ways in which such realities are experienced and narrated... Read More
Kirk A. Denton, “Exhibiting the Past: Historical Memory and the Politics of Museums in Postsocialist China” (U. of Hawaii Press, 2014)
Kirk A. Denton‘s recent book explores the role of the state in China in shaping particular visions of the past through work in and with museums. Focusing on history museums in particular, Exhibiting the Past: Historical Memory and the Politics of Museums in Postsocialist China (University of Hawaii Press, 2014)... Read More