Book Review

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    Liberalism at Large: The World According to the Economist – Book Review

Liberalism at Large: The World According to the Economist – Book Review

Liberalism at Large: The World According to the Economist. Alexander Zevin. Verso. 2019.

The theories and ideologies that form our political identities must be continuously reinterpreted in order to stay intact. This work of maintaining ideologies is given more attention than usual in Alexander Zevin’s Liberalism at Large: The World According to the Economist, which examines the history of […]

May 31st, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|

Why Free Will is Real – Book Review

If you are interested in this book, you may like to listen to a podcast of Professor Christian List’s LSE lecture, ‘Free Will in a Deterministic World?’, recorded on 4 December 2012.  

Why Free Will Is Real. Christian List. Harvard University Press. 2019.

The universe may very well be deterministic. According to many physicists, there are natural laws that govern the […]

May 24th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|

The City – Book Review

The City. Robert E. Park and Ernest W. Burgess (with a new foreword by Robert J. Sampson). University of Chicago Press. 2019.

Every academic discipline has classic texts that introduce new perspectives or challenge dominant ideologies. These books are required reading for those who aspire to be experts in a particular field of study and serve as common currency when […]

May 17th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    Slipping Loose: The UK’s Long Drift Away from the European Union – Book Review

Slipping Loose: The UK’s Long Drift Away from the European Union – Book Review

Slipping Loose: The UK’s Long Drift Away from the European Union. Martin Westlake. Agenda. 2020.

The vote by the United Kingdom to leave the European Union on 23 June 2016 came as a shock to the global community – or so the story goes. But was the result truly a surprise, or was it a foregone conclusion? The rush to […]

May 10th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    Schism: China, America and the Fracturing of the Global Trading System – Book Review

Schism: China, America and the Fracturing of the Global Trading System – Book Review

Schism: China, America and the Fracturing of the Global Trading System. Paul Blustein. Centre for International Governance Innovation. 2019.

No country has benefited more from the global trading system or challenged its liberal internationalist precepts more than China. The United States and its allies embraced the challenge of incorporating a post-revolutionary China at the dawn of the 21st century. Two […]

Instagram: Visual Social Media Cultures – Book Review

Instagram: Visual Social Media Cultures. Tama Leaver, Tim Highfield and Crystal Abidin. Polity. 2020.

In Instagram: Visual Social Media Cultures, Tama Leaver, Tim Highfield and Crystal Abidin elaborate on why Instagram is more than just a social media platform: instead, it has become an icon that has altered understandings of visual social media cultures. By doing so, they focus […]

April 26th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|

Seven recommended reads for contextualising Covid-19

In the present crisis of the Covid-19 pandemic, there are a number of accessible historical works and websites that can provide background and information on the disease as it unfolds. Since the disease is so recently emergent, there are as yet no reliable books dedicated directly to the topic. There are, however, works that provide the necessary context for […]

The Meritocracy Trap – Book Review

The Meritocracy Trap. Daniel Markovits. Penguin Press. 2019.

Meritocracy is a reliable story. In The Meritocracy Trap, Daniel Markovits argues that this endlessly repeated cultural script is damaging partly because it is so consistent. The term ‘meritocracy’, where society is governed based on achievement, was coined by Michael Young in 1958 as a warning. Since then it has become […]

April 5th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    How to Run a City like Amazon and Other Fables – Book Review

How to Run a City like Amazon and Other Fables – Book Review

How to Run a City like Amazon and Other Fables. Mark Graham, Rob Kitchin, Shannon Mattern and Joe Shaw (eds). Meatspace Press. 2019.

In the science-fiction romantic film Her, the director Spike Jonze displays a near future where humanity is permeated by artificially intelligent virtual assistants, so much so that Theodore, the protagonist, develops a relationship with Samantha, his self-named […]

March 29th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|

Plagues and the Paradox of Progress – Book Review

This review was originally published on the blog From Poverty to Power.

Plagues and the Paradox of Progress. Thomas J. Bollyky. MIT Press. 2019.

If you want to step back and think more broadly about Coronavirus, the Universe and Everything, you could do worse than start with Plagues and the Paradox of Progress, by Thomas J. Bollyky, which combines a […]

March 22nd, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    The Theft of a Decade: How the Baby Boomers Stole the Millennials’ Economic Future – Book Review

The Theft of a Decade: How the Baby Boomers Stole the Millennials’ Economic Future – Book Review

If you are interested in this book review, you may like to listen to this ‘Extra Innings’ episode of The Ballpark podcast in which Joseph Sternberg talks to Ballpark host Chris Gilson about his book. 

The Theft of A Decade: How the Baby Boomers Stole the Millennials’ Economic Future. Joseph C. Sternberg. PublicAffairs. 2019.

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‘How is it that […]

March 15th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    Narrative Economics: How Stories Go Viral and Drive Major Economic Events – Book Review

Narrative Economics: How Stories Go Viral and Drive Major Economic Events – Book Review

If you are interested in this review, you can watch a video of Robert J. Shiller speaking about his new book at LSE or listen to a podcast of the event, both recorded on 6 September 2019. 

Narrative Economics: How Stories Go Viral and Drive Major Economic Events. Robert J. Shiller. Princeton University Press. 2019.

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Robert Shiller’s new […]

March 8th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy – Book Review

How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy – Book Review

How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy. Jenny Odell. Melville House Publishing. 2019.

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The Potential of Nothing is Everything

How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy by Jenny Odell caught my attention as someone who is anxious about not doing enough, while feeling I’ve overcommitted to too many things. A function of over-promising and under-delivering in […]

March 1st, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics and the Future of Work – Book Review

The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics and the Future of Work – Book Review

The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics and the Future of Work. Richard Baldwin. Oxford University Press. 2019.

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There is little wonder that the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) has sparked ongoing debates about the future of work. In The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics and the Future of Work, Richard Baldwin, the author of The Great Convergence, provides a […]

February 23rd, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    From Spinster to Career Woman: Middle-Class Women and Work in Victorian England – Book Review

From Spinster to Career Woman: Middle-Class Women and Work in Victorian England – Book Review

From Spinster to Career Woman: Middle-Class Women and Work in Victorian England. Arlene Young. McGill-Queen’s University Press. 2019.

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Spinster: ‘an unmarried woman and especially one past the common age for marrying’.

In From Spinster to Career Woman, Arlene Young takes us on a fascinating, complex and radical journey exploring women’s work in mid-Victorian England. Young examines cultural perceptions […]

February 16th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|

Are Filter Bubbles Real? – Book Review

Are Filter Bubbles Real? Axel Bruns. Polity. 2019.

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Terms like ‘filter bubbles’ and ‘echo chambers’ have transcended social media and political communication research to enter the public consciousness, being associated in particular with polarisation in today’s societies and the unexpected outcomes of recent public votes, such as the victories of Donald Trump and the Brexiteers. In short, […]

February 9th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    Indebted: How Families Make College Work at Any Cost – Book Review

Indebted: How Families Make College Work at Any Cost – Book Review

Indebted: How Families Make College Work at Any Cost. Caitlin Zaloom. Princeton University Press. 2019.

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Laura and Chris are the proud parents of Sam and Mark who respectively attend Western Michigan University and Grand Valley State University in the US. Whilst Sam and Mark utilise federal loans of $7,500 and $5,500 each year, Laura takes on additional nursing […]

February 2nd, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    The Anarchy: The Relentless Rise of the East India Company – Book Review

The Anarchy: The Relentless Rise of the East India Company – Book Review

The Anarchy: The Relentless Rise of the East India Company. William Dalrymple. Bloomsbury. 2019.

The rapid collapse of the mighty and opulent Mughal Empire in the early eighteenth century stands as almost an enigma of history, but perhaps what was even more improbable was its complete replacement not by a rival state, but by a European trading company a […]

January 19th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|
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    Mean Girl: Ayn Rand and the Culture of Greed – Book Review

Mean Girl: Ayn Rand and the Culture of Greed – Book Review

Mean Girl: Ayn Rand and the Culture of Greed. Lisa Duggan. University of California Press. 2019.

In 1905, Alissa Zinovievna Rosenbaum was born into a middle-class Jewish family in St. Petersburg, Russia. While Rosenbaum lived a relatively comfortable life financially until her teens, it is important to acknowledge that she grew up in what Anne C. Heller has described as […]

January 12th, 2020|Book Review|2 Comments|
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    Ten of the best books of 2019 recommended by LSE blog editors

Ten of the best books of 2019 recommended by LSE blog editors

Many of the LSE blogs regularly feature book reviews of the latest publications emerging across the social sciences. But which books have LSE blog editors been enjoying in 2019? In this list, five LSE blog editors recommend their favourite reads of the year.

Much of my work involves thinking about Brexit, which can be unhealthy. The fact that so much […]

January 5th, 2020|Book Review|0 Comments|