Book Reviews

In this section you can read reviews of academic books covering Europe and the European neighbourhood. We publish four reviews a month, aiming to cover a wide range of books on all aspects of public policy and politics.

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    Book Review: What is Political Sociology? by Elisabeth S. Clemens

Book Review: What is Political Sociology? by Elisabeth S. Clemens

In this book, Elisabeth S. Clemens aims to produce a ‘definitive and inspirational standard text for students at all levels’. Patricia Hogwood writes that her work offers a concise overview of political sociology as the human face of politics: the politicised interactions that take place within and between the domains of family, work, civic culture and structures of government. Clemens presents key […]

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December 4th, 2016|Book Reviews, featured|0 Comments|
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    Book Review: Historically Inevitable? Turning Points in the Russian Revolution edited by Tony Brenton

Book Review: Historically Inevitable? Turning Points in the Russian Revolution edited by Tony Brenton

For the edited collection Historically Inevitable? Turning Points in the Russian Revolution, editor Tony Brenton brings together fourteen leading scholars to consider the inevitability of the Russian Revolution by focusing on key turning points. While readers may not necessarily share the authors’ commitment to the utility of counterfactual history, the volume contributes to our understanding of the various agents and […]

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November 27th, 2016|Book Reviews, featured|0 Comments|
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    Author Interview with Brian Klaas: How Can We Fix Democracy?

Author Interview with Brian Klaas: How Can We Fix Democracy?

The end of the Cold War in the early 1990s saw democracy surge as former Soviet autocracies transitioned to democratic systems and democracy spread in Africa and Latin America. But the past decade has seen a reverse in this trend, with authoritarianism and dictatorships making a comeback around the world. In this interview with Peter Carrol on his new book, The Despot’s Accomplice: […]

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    Book Review: The Hidden Wealth of Nations: The Scourge of Tax Havens by Gabriel Zucman

Book Review: The Hidden Wealth of Nations: The Scourge of Tax Havens by Gabriel Zucman

In The Hidden Wealth of Nations: The Scourge of Tax Havens, Gabriel Zucman makes a provocative argument about the large-scale evasion of taxes as well as how to tackle this global issue. Antonio De Vito highly recommends this concise, nontechnical and clearly argued book to everyone interested in understanding how the international financial system is making illegal use of tax […]

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November 13th, 2016|Book Reviews, featured|0 Comments|
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    Book Review: How Europeans View and Evaluate Democracy edited by Mónica Ferrín and Hanspeter Kriesi

Book Review: How Europeans View and Evaluate Democracy edited by Mónica Ferrín and Hanspeter Kriesi

In How Europeans View and Evaluate Democracy, editors Mónica Ferrín and Hanspeter Kriesi offer insight into perceptions of democracy across Europe by examining how Europeans evaluate their experience of democracy and assess the legitimacy of current democratic regimes across the continent. This comprehensive study will be an excellent read for political comparativists and Europeanists, finds Simeon Mitropolitski.
How Europeans View and Evaluate Democracy. Mónica Ferrín and […]

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    Book Review: The Right to Buy? Selling Off Public and Social Housing by Alan Murie

Book Review: The Right to Buy? Selling Off Public and Social Housing by Alan Murie

Introduced under the Thatcher government, ‘Right to Buy’ has had a formative effect on housing in the UK for the past 35 years. In The Right to Buy? Selling Off Public and Social Housing, Alan Murie examines the policy’s long-standing and ongoing impact, and considers the implications of its more recent extension. While more explicit political analysis of the […]

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October 30th, 2016|Book Reviews, featured|1 Comment|
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    Book Review: Citizens in Europe: Essays on Democracy, Constitutionalism and European Integration by Claus Offe and Ulrich K. Preuss

Book Review: Citizens in Europe: Essays on Democracy, Constitutionalism and European Integration by Claus Offe and Ulrich K. Preuss

In Citizens in Europe: Essays on Democracy, Constitutionalism and European Integration, Claus Offe and Ulrich K. Preuss offer a collection of essays published since 1983 that consider key issues that must be addressed by European citizens and institutions if recent turmoil is to be overcome and greater integration achieved. This volume is recommended to those looking for institutional solutions […]

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October 23rd, 2016|Book Reviews, featured|0 Comments|
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    Long Read Review: Politics: Between the Extremes by Nick Clegg

Long Read Review: Politics: Between the Extremes by Nick Clegg

The UK government of 2010-2015 was the first UK Coalition since 1945 and faced the consequences of the 2008 financial crash. In Politics: Between the Extremes, former Deputy Prime Minister and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg explains the challenges of being the small, Liberal partner in the Coalition, and argues forcefully for the importance of a politics of compromise. Joe […]

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    Book Review: The Poisoned Well: Empire and its Legacy in the Middle East by Roger Hardy

Book Review: The Poisoned Well: Empire and its Legacy in the Middle East by Roger Hardy

Almost fifty years after Britain and France left the Middle East, the toxic legacies of their rule continue to fester. The Poisoned Well: Empire and its Legacy in the Middle East, Roger Hardy’s lively new account of imperialism in the region, is bursting with memorable anecdotes, intriguing detail and splashes of colour that illuminate a canvas of power, greed […]

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    Book Review: British Clandestine Activities in Romania During the Second World War by Dennis Deletant

Book Review: British Clandestine Activities in Romania During the Second World War by Dennis Deletant

In British Clandestine Activities in Romania During the Second World War, Dennis Deletant attends to the relationship between Britain and Romania preceding and during World War II. The book illustrates the international context of the period, while outlining the cultural and diplomatic relations between these two countries. This is a necessary and valuable contribution to the history of Romania that should serve […]

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    Book Review: At Home in Two Countries: The Past and Future of Dual Citizenship by Peter J. Spiro

Book Review: At Home in Two Countries: The Past and Future of Dual Citizenship by Peter J. Spiro

Dual citizenship is a concept that has greatly transformed since the term’s first use in the early 1900s. As misunderstandings nonetheless abound about its legal status and implications,Peter J. Spiro traces the historical emergence of dual citizenship and offers a defence of its value in the twenty-first century in At Home in Two Countries: The Past and Future of Dual […]

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September 11th, 2016|Book Reviews, featured|0 Comments|
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    Book Review: After the Crisis: Anthropological Thought, Neoliberalism and the Aftermath edited by James G. Carrier

Book Review: After the Crisis: Anthropological Thought, Neoliberalism and the Aftermath edited by James G. Carrier

In After the Crisis: Anthropological Thought, Neoliberalism and the Aftermath, editor James G. Carrier and contributors reflect on the impact that neoliberalism has had on the state of anthropology today. While Christopher May finds a clear account of the sense of crisis currently gripping the discipline, he argues that greater engagement with the field of critical political economy might have helped […]

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September 4th, 2016|Book Reviews, featured|0 Comments|
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    Book Review: Taxing the Rich: A History of Fiscal Fairness in the United States and Europe by Kenneth Scheve and David Stasavage

Book Review: Taxing the Rich: A History of Fiscal Fairness in the United States and Europe by Kenneth Scheve and David Stasavage

In Taxing the Rich: A History of Fiscal Fairness in the United States and Europe, authors Kenneth Scheve and David Stasavage seek to expand our historical appreciation of the political economy of taxation and, more specifically, the taxation of the wealthiest in society. Christopher May does not hesitate in recommending this accessible and clearly argued book to those looking […]

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    Book Review: Between Nationalism and Europeanisation: Narratives of National Identity in Bulgaria and Macedonia by Nevena Nancheva

Book Review: Between Nationalism and Europeanisation: Narratives of National Identity in Bulgaria and Macedonia by Nevena Nancheva

In Between Nationalism and Europeanisation: Narratives of National Identity in Bulgaria and Macedonia, Nevena Nancheva looks at two post-communist Balkan states ‒ Bulgaria and Macedonia ‒ to explore how their narratives of national identity have changed in the context of Europeanisation and EU membership preparations. Although a challenging read at times, this book focuses on two underrepresented states to […]

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    Book Review: The Oxford Handbook of Swedish Politics edited by Jon Pierre

Book Review: The Oxford Handbook of Swedish Politics edited by Jon Pierre

In this new edited volume, The Oxford Handbook of Swedish Politics, Jon Pierre brings together 50 contributors to describe and analyse Sweden’s past and contemporary political and constitutional settlement. Challenging romanticising interpretations of Sweden as an inherent beacon of prosperity and equality, this is a much-needed, well-organised and comprehensive collection that traces the evolution, development and possible twilight of […]

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    Book Review: Power Shift: On the New Global Order by Richard Falk

Book Review: Power Shift: On the New Global Order by Richard Falk

In Power Shift: On the New Global Order, Richard Falk examines the challenges and changes to global politics since the end of the Cold War, covering issues including the rise of drone warfare, climate change and the growing significance of non-state actors. He focuses particularly on the key role that US militarism has played in engendering many of these […]

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Book Review: Strangers at our Door by Zygmunt Bauman

In this new short book, Strangers at our Door, Zygmunt Bauman examines the origins, contours and impact of the present-day moral panic around the ‘migration crisis’ in Europe. He explores the fear generated by political campaigns, arguing that this ‘crisis of humanity’ instead requires a ‘fusion of horizons’ through dialogue. While Nicolas Schneider suggests that a more systematic and detailed analysis of […]

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July 31st, 2016|Book Reviews|1 Comment|
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    Book Review: Iberian Military Politics: Controlling the Armed Forces During Dictatorship and Democratisation by José Javier Olivas Osuna

Book Review: Iberian Military Politics: Controlling the Armed Forces During Dictatorship and Democratisation by José Javier Olivas Osuna

In Iberian Military Politics: Controlling the Armed Forces During Dictatorship and Democratisation, José Javier Olivas Osuna traces the divergent trajectories of civil-military relations in Portugal and Spain from the 1930s to the 1980s. This book offers a convincing challenge to the idea of a shared Iberian pathway through dictatorship and democratisation, finds Alejandro Quiroga.
Iberian Military Politics: Controlling the Armed Forces During Dictatorship and […]

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    Book Review: Solidarity Without Borders: Gramscian Perspectives on Migration and Civil Society Alliances

Book Review: Solidarity Without Borders: Gramscian Perspectives on Migration and Civil Society Alliances

Solidarity Without Borders: Gramscian Perspectives on Migration and Civil Society Alliances, a contribution to the ‘Reading Gramsci’ series, draws upon Gramscian theories to help understand processes of solidarity-building between civil society and various migrant groups across Europe. Rana Sukarieh welcomes this book, edited by Óscar García Agustínand Martin Bak Jørgensen, for demonstrating the continued relevance of Gramci’s theories for considering coalitions […]

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July 3rd, 2016|Book Reviews|1 Comment|
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    Book Review: Global Inequality: A New Approach for the Age of Globalization by Branko Milanovic

Book Review: Global Inequality: A New Approach for the Age of Globalization by Branko Milanovic

In Global Inequality: A New Approach for the Age of Globalization, Branko Milanovic offers a new account of the dynamics that are driving inequality on a global scale. Although left slightly frustrated by its abrupt end, Duncan Green praises this brilliant and thought-provoking book for its political curiosity and insight and, more particularly, for its reflections on the possible trajectory of […]

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June 12th, 2016|Book Reviews|0 Comments|