New Books Network

Peggy Schwartz and Murray Schwartz, “The Dance Claimed Me: A Biography of Pearl Primus” (Yale UP, 2012)
For some time now I’ve been in spaces with dancers and dance scholars who lament the amount of available research on some of the black luminaries in our field. Sometimes the need for a particular project is present for so long that its absence is taken for granted and treated... Read More
Jean Zimmerman, “Love, Fiercely: A Gilded Age Romance” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012)
The portrait is startling. Painted by John Singer Sargent, “Mr. and Mrs. I.N. Phelps Stokes” depicts a woman dressed casually, almost masculinely, save a voluminous white skirt. Her hand is held brazenly at her hip as her presence nearly obscures that of her husband, who hovers in the background like... Read More
Alastair Reynolds, “Blue Remembered Earth” (Gollancz, 2012)
Blue Remembered Earth (Gollantz, 2012) takes place roughly 150 years in the future. Climate change, as well as the political and economic rise of Africa, have transformed the planet. Humanity is colonizing the solar system. Geoffrey Akinya, grandson of a visionary businesswoman, cares most about his scientific work with elephants.... Read More
Michele Elam, “The Souls of Mixed Folk: Race, Politics and Aesthetics in the New Millennium” (Stanford UP, 2011)
“What are you?” The question can often comes out of nowhere One can be going about her quotidian activities, or she might have just finished a meeting at work. “What are you?” The question is disorienting for most, but for others who are racially ambiguous it is commonplace. The ostensibly... Read More
Avner Baz, “When Words Are Called For: A Defense of Ordinary Language Philosophy” (Harvard University Press, 2012)
In When Words Are Called For: A Defense of Ordinary Language Philosophy (Harvard University Press, 2012), Avner Baz sets out to make a case for the reconsideration of Ordinary Language Philosophy, or OLP, in mainstream academic philosophy. I personally found Baz’s work in it interesting due to the fact that... Read More
Shih-Shan Susan Huang, “Picturing the True Form: Daoist Visual Culture in Traditional China” (Harvard University Asia Center, 2012)
Shih-Shan Susan Huang‘s beautiful new book explores visual culture of religious Daoism, focusing on the tenth through the thirteenth centuries. Picturing the True Form: Daoist Visual Culture in Traditional China (Harvard University Asia Center, 2012) is divided into two sections, devoted loosely to esoteric and exoteric realms of knowledge. The... Read More
Jamie Kelly, “Framing Democracy: A Behavioral Approach to Democratic Theory” (Princeton UP, 2012)
Plato famously argued that democracy is nearly the worst form of government because citizens are decidedly unwise. Many styles of democratic theory have tried to meet Plato’s argument by denying that democracy has anything to do with wisdom. Democracy, such views claim, is simply a matter of representing citizens’ preferences... Read More