New Books Network

Ekaterina Svetlova, “Financial Models and Society: Villains or Scapegoats” (Elgar, 2018)
The machines have taken over…. For many operating in investment management, it can certainly seem that way: factor investing, algorithmic investing, dynamic hedging instruments, risk management derivatives driven by changes in market prices, etc. dominate much of the investment narrative. And now and again these supposedly superior investment approaches get... Read More
Marko Geslani, “Rites of the God-King: Śānti and Ritual Change in Early Hinduism” (Oxford UP, 2018)
Is “Vedic” fire sacrifice at odds with “Hindu” image worship? Through a careful study of ritual (śanti) texts geared towards appeasement of inauspicious forces (primarily the Atharva Veda and in the Bṛhatsaṃhitā, an Indian astrological work), Marko Geslani demonstrates the persistent significance and centrality of the work of Brahmanical priesthood... Read More
Nancy S. Steinhardt, “Chinese Architecture: A History” (Princeton UP, 2019)
If there’s one thing that conjures up the – rightly contested – idea of a ‘civilisation’, it is grand palatial or religious buildings, and many such structures are foremost in how China is imagined throughout the world. But as Nancy S. Steinhardt notes in Chinese Architecture: A History (Princeton University... Read More
jayy dodd, “The Black Condition Ft. Narcissus” (Nightboat Books, 2019)
If the prompt is “respond to a myth of Narcissus using thoughtful, meditative poems,” then jayy dodd gave us a beautiful answer. In The Black Condition Ft. Narcissus (Nightboat Books, 2019),  jayy dodd offers her own brilliant reflections on so many things: the contemporary moment, dystopia, her transition, and more.... Read More
Stijn Vanheule, Derek Hook and Calum Neill, “Reading Lacan’s Écrits” (Routledge, 2018)
Lacan published his Écrits in 1966, a compilation of his written work up to that middle period in his teaching. Notoriously difficult to read, the editors of the book we’re discussing today describe the Écrits as “an unwieldy, conglomerate ‘urtext’ … not a book at all … but ‘the waste’... Read More
Chika Watanabe, “Becoming One: Religion, Development, and Environmentalism in a Japanese NGO in Myanmar” (U Hawaii Press, 2019)
Chika Watanabe’s Becoming One: Religion, Development, and Environmentalism in a Japanese NGO in Myanmar (University of Hawaii Press, 2019) is a rich ethnographic study of the work of a Japanese NGO called the Organization for Industrial, Spiritual and Cultural Advancement. Watanabe’s deep dive into the daily workings of OISCA explores... Read More
Katie Batza, “Before AIDS: Gay Health Politics in the 1970s” (U Pennsylvania Press, 2018)
The AIDS crisis of the 1980s looms large in recent histories of sexuality, medicine, and politics, and justly so—an unknown virus without a cure ravages an already persecuted minority, medical professionals are unprepared and sometimes unwilling to care for the sick, and a national health bureaucracy is slow to invest... Read More