Book Reviews

In this section you can read reviews of academic books covering the USA, and its continental neighbours, Canada and Mexico. Each weekend we publish two reviews, aiming to cover a wide range of books on all aspects of public policy and politics.

Book Review: Feminisms: A Global History by Lucy Delap

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In Feminisms: A Global History, Lucy Delap offers a new and wide-ranging account of the global history of feminisms, drawing on an innovative range of sources to explore the rich, diverse and radical roots of feminist movements across time and space. Addressing the powerful contributions of feminisms while also examining their limitations, exclusions and complicities, this book is a triumph of […]

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    Book Review: Good Economics for Hard Times: Better Answers to Our Biggest Problems by Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo

Book Review: Good Economics for Hard Times: Better Answers to Our Biggest Problems by Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo

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In Good Economics for Hard Times: Better Answers to Our Biggest Problems, Nobel-Prize winning economists Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo carefully lay out evidence to provide a grounded approach to tackling today’s most pressing global problems. With a focus on alleviating inequality and poverty, Banerjee and Duflo’s book clears a path for more interdisciplinary work centred on improving citizens’ […]

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    Book Review: The Glass Half-Empty: Debunking the Myth of Progress in the Twenty-First Century by Rodrigo Aguilera

Book Review: The Glass Half-Empty: Debunking the Myth of Progress in the Twenty-First Century by Rodrigo Aguilera

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In The Glass Half-Empty: Debunking the Myth of Progress in the Twenty-First Century, Rodrigo Aguilera challenges the arguments of the ‘New Optimists’, showing their progress narrative to be a conservative defence of the status quo that is ill-equipped to deal with pressing socioeconomic problems. In making clear that we do not live in the best of all possible worlds, this […]

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    Book Review: Ecocide: Kill the Corporation Before it Kills Us by David Whyte

Book Review: Ecocide: Kill the Corporation Before it Kills Us by David Whyte

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In Ecocide: Kill the Corporation Before it Kills Us, David Whyte argues that corporations are a critical yet neglected cause of our global environmental crisis. Accessibly written with excellent examples and case studies of modern business conduct, this bold book will be a valuable addition to reading lists, particularly for those studying political economy and business, recommends Atul K. Shah. 

Ecocide: Kill the […]

Book Review: The Ghetto by Bryan Cheyette

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In The Ghetto, Bryan Cheyette offers a new addition to the Oxford University Press series of ‘Very Short Introductions’, distilling the long history of the changing meaning of the ‘ghetto’ across the globe and through time over six succinct chapters. With the author’s expertise in modern literature and culture bringing a new angle on the topic, Laura Vaughan highly […]

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    Book Review: Me, Not You: The Trouble with Mainstream Feminism by Alison Phipps

Book Review: Me, Not You: The Trouble with Mainstream Feminism by Alison Phipps

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In Me, Not You, Alison Phipps builds on Black feminist scholarship to investigate how mainstream feminist movements against sexual violence express a ‘political whiteness’ that can reinforce marginalisation and oppression and limits the capacity to collectively achieve structural change and dismantle violent systems. This short and accessible book challenges us to think deeply about how the politics of woundedness, outrage and […]

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    Book Review: The Internet in Everything: Freedom and Security in a World with No Off Switch by Laura DeNardis

Book Review: The Internet in Everything: Freedom and Security in a World with No Off Switch by Laura DeNardis

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In The Internet in Everything: Freedom and Security in a World with No Off Switch, Laura DeNardis offers an exploration of the invisible, complex and concerning worldwide network of technologies often referred to as the Internet of Things, focusing particularly on the pressing issues of governance and jurisdiction. Courteney J. O’Connor highly recommends this well researched and impeccably written text to political scientists, […]

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    Book Review: Predict and Surveil: Data, Discretion and the Future of Policing by Sarah Brayne

Book Review: Predict and Surveil: Data, Discretion and the Future of Policing by Sarah Brayne

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In Predict and Surveil: Data, Discretion and the Future of Policing, Sarah Brayne looks at how the Los Angeles Police Department’s (LAPD) use of surveillance technology has changed its approach to policing and how police culture views the entrance of all this new technology. Grounded in ethnographic research and attentive observation, the book offers a useful example of social science methods examining […]

Book Review: Rage by Bob Woodward

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Rage by Washington Post veteran Bob Woodward documents the first three-and-a-half years of Donald Trump’s presidency. Drawing from 17 interviews Woodward secured with Trump, the book ends with a discussion of the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. The book is an impressive piece of contemporary history, yet Robert Ledger and Peter Finn find that it is sometimes hard […]

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    Book Review: Slowdown: The End of the Great Acceleration – And Why It’s Good for the Planet, the Economy and Our Lives by Danny Dorling

Book Review: Slowdown: The End of the Great Acceleration – And Why It’s Good for the Planet, the Economy and Our Lives by Danny Dorling

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In Slowdown, Danny Dorling challenges the idea that we are living through an era of unprecedented economic and technological acceleration, instead putting forward an argument in favour of the inevitability and desirability of deceleration. Published in the midst of a global pandemic, Dorling’s insightful and persuasive book is a well-timed forecast that the storm will eventually subside and humankind will advance towards […]

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