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Tag Archives: book review

Book Review: Transnational Homosexuals in Communist Poland: Cross-Border Flows in Gay and Lesbian Magazines by Lukasz Szulc

In Transnational Homosexuals in Communist Poland: Cross-Border Flows in Gay and Lesbian Magazines, Lukasz Szulc examines the emergence of Polish gay and lesbian magazines in the 1980s, challenging the perception of LGBT activism as a post-1989 discourse in Central and Eastern Europe. Drawing upon a diverse and rich array of resources, this is a fascinating and convincing study that suggests valuable avenues for future study, while also reminding us of how grassroots activism offers the...

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Book Review: English Uprising: Brexit and the Mainstreaming of the Far Right by Paul Stocker

In England Uprising: Brexit and the Mainstreaming of the Far Right, Paul Stocker offers a historical account of the rise of far-right movements in the UK from the early twentieth century to the present, showing how the gradual mainstreaming of far-right discourse impacted upon the recent UK Brexit vote. This book is an excellent primer for those looking to understand the changing influence of the far right on modern British politics, writes Katherine Williams.  English Uprising: Brexit and...

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Book Review: Humiliation in International Relations: A Pathology of Contemporary International Systems by Bertrand Badie

In Humilitation in International Relations: A Pathology of Contemporary International Systems, Bertrand Badie addresses the longstanding use of humiliation as a systemic practice wielded by dominant powers within the international state system. While Badie’s optimism regarding the capacity of greater social integration to quell the consequences of humiliation may not convince all readers, this important book and its fascinating historical examples are more relevant than ever, writes Caroline...

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Book Review: Grassroots Activism and the Evolution of Transitional Justice: The Families of the Disappeared by Iosif Kovras

In Grassroots Activism and the Evolution of Transitional Justice: The Families of the Disappeared, Iosif Kovras looks at the varying mobilisations of the families of the disappeared through four case studies – Chile, Cyprus, Lebanon and South Africa. Emphasising the importance of context in shaping the objectives and success of the different movements, this is a thought-provoking contribution to the critical literature on transitional justice, finds Ebru Demir. Grassroots Activism and the...

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Book Review: Ethnic Mobilization, Violence and the Politics of Affect: The Serb Democratic Party and the Bosnian War by Adis Maksić

In Ethnic Mobilization, Violence and the Politics of Affect: The Serb Democratic Party and the Bosnian War, Adis Maksić offers a comprehensive and insightful account of the processes through which Bosnian Serbs became ethnically mobilised around the Serb Democratic Party. Sarah Correia finds this to be an essential book for anyone studying the Bosnian war, the dynamics of ethnic conflict and nation formation. Ethnic Mobilization, Violence and the Politics of Affect: The Serb Democratic Party...

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Book Review: Diploma Democracy: The Rise of Political Meritocracy by Mark Bovens and Anchrit Wille

In Diploma Democracy: The Rise of Political Meritocracy, Mark Bovens and Anchrit Wille examine how Western democracies are shaped by educational inequalities that lead to gaps in political participation and governments being dominated by academic elites. While less sure of some of the authors’ solutions for these ‘diploma democracies’, Jameel Hampton finds the book to be a convincing account of the influence of education on political inequality in Western Europe today. Diploma Democracy: The...

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Book Review: The Global Rise of Populism: Performance, Political Style and Representation by Benjamin Moffitt

In The Global Rise of Populism: Performance, Political Style and Representation, Benjamin Moffitt approaches populism as a political style that is mediated through symbols, disseminated through the mass media and performed through verbal and non-verbal modes of communication. While suggesting Moffitt’s work is more an extension of the discourse school than a radical break from it, Ben Margulies welcomes this as an important contribution to studies of populism that will enable scholars to...

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Book Review: Robert McNamara’s Other War: The World Bank and International Development by Patrick Allan Scharma

In Robert McNamara’s Other War: The World Bank and International Development, Patrick Allan Scharma attends to the lesser-studied final act of McNamara’s political career – his role as leader of the World Bank. This thoroughly researched book offers a detailed and memorable account of both McNamara and this vital moment in the history of global economic development, yet occasionally pulls its punches when it comes to fully grappling with this controversial figure’s political morality,...

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Book Review: A Short History of the Russian Revolution by Geoffrey Swain

In A Short History of the Russian Revolution, Geoffrey Swain challenges the historical narrative that the Bolsheviks co-opted an otherwise reform-minded labour movement for revolutionary purposes, instead underscoring the radicalism of Russian workers. Barton Edgerton finds that above all the book suggests the contingency of the multiple events behind the Revolution.  A Short History of the Russian Revolution. Geoffery Swain. IB Tauris. 2016. Find this book:  Evidently there is good reason...

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Book Review: The Ordinary Virtues: Moral Order in a Divided World by Michael Ignatieff

In The Ordinary Virtues: Moral Order in a Divided World, Michael Ignatieff aims to take ethics out of the seminar room by examining the role of ‘ordinary virtues’ such as trust, forgiveness and reconciliation in local contexts and settings. While the book travels the globe to underscore both the fragility and strength of community-based networks of solidarity as part of Ignatieff’s broader commitment to political liberalism, the challenges of today may require more than faith in the ‘ordinary...

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