New Books Network

Mark Stephen Meadows, “We Robot: Skywalker’s Hand, Blade Runners, Iron Man, Slutbots, and How Fiction Became Fact” (Lyons Press, 2011)
If technology is the site of digital culture, then robots are the future platforms of our social projections and interactions. In fact, that future is already here in small but fascinating ways. Mark Stephen Meadows is one of a handful of curious authors who have begun to explore the social... Read More
Daniel Treisman, “The Return: Russia’s Journey from Gorbachev to Medvedev” (Free Press, 2011)
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, journalists, academics, and policymakers have sought to make sense of post-Soviet Russia. Is Russia an emerging or retrograde democracy? A free-market or crony capitalism? Adopting Western values or forever steeped in Asiatic mores? Is Russia in transition, and if so, transition to what?... Read More
Todd Denault, “The Greatest Game: The Montreal Canadiens, the Red Army, and the Night that Saved Hockey” (McClelland & Stewart, 2010)
When sports fans list the greatest games, they talk about close contests, outstanding performances, and dramatic finishes. Think of game six of the 1975 World Series between the Red Sox and the Reds, or Boston College’s 47-45 win over the University of Miami in 1984, capped by Doug Flutie’s miraculous... Read More
Lee Congdon, “Baseball and Memory: Winning, Losing, and Remembrance of Things Past” (St. Augustine’s Press, 2011)
“Isn’t it funny?” once mused Buck O’Neil, the sage of Negro League baseball. “Everybody remembers going to their first baseball game with their father. They might not remember going to their first day of school, . . . or their first Thanksgiving dinner. But they always remember going to the... Read More
Robert Parthesius, “Dutch Ships in Tropical Waters: The Development of the Dutch East India Company Shipping Network in Asia 1595-1660” (Amsterdam UP, 2010)
The Dutch broke the Portuguese commercial and colonizing monopoly in the East in 1595; the seal might have been said to have been set on this triumph when they took over the port of Melaka in 1641, effectively replacing the Portuguese as the masters of maritime Asia. The famed ‘Dutch... Read More
Katharine E. McGregor, “History in Uniform: Military Ideology and the Construction of Indonesia’s Past” (NUS Press, 2007)
Nugroho Notosusanto (1930-1985) never pursued a military career; but all the same he did his bit for the Indonesian armed forces. He was co-opted into the Armed Forces History Centre as a young academic, and dedicated the greater part of his life to writing official histories of post-colonial Indonesia in... Read More
Karen Sternheimer, “Celebrity Culture and the American Dream: Stardom and Social Mobility” (Routledge, 2010)
It is hard to dispute that today there’s a heightened fascination with celebrities and their personal lives. Who cheated on whom, who’s getting married and what celebrity checked into to rehab is the stuff of daily headlines that many of us, willingly or not, follow and know about. Moreover, the... Read More