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Jason SokolAll Eyes Are Upon Us: Race and Politics from Boston to Brooklyn

Basic Books, 2014

by Dan Kilbride on December 17, 2014

Jason Sokol

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[Cross-posted from New Books in American Studies] When it came to race relations, the post-World War Two North was different — better — than the South. Or so white people in the northeast told themselves. While Jason Sokol argues that there was a real basis for what he calls the “northern mystique,” his new book All Eyes Are Upon Us: Race and Politics from Boston to Brooklyn (Basic Books, 2014) shows that this conviction disguised a deep, rich vein of racism that blocked progress and justice for people of color. Examining Jackie Robinson, Shirley Chisholm, David Dinkins, and other important figures from the 1930s through the 2000s, Sokol presents us with a sobering reflection on the limits of racial progress in the nation’s progressive center.

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Timothy Michael LawWhen God Spoke Greek: The Septuagint and the Making of the Christian Bible

December 10, 2014

[Cross-posted from New Books in Religion] When a contemporary reader opens up their Bible they may be unaware of the long historical process that created the pages within. One of the key components in this history is the Septuagint, the Greek translation of Hebrew scriptures between the third century BCE and the second century CE. Timothy Michael Law, [...]

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Victor PickardAmerica’s Battle for Media Democracy: The Triumph of Corporate Libertarianism and the Future of Media Reform

December 3, 2014

[Cross-posted from New Books in Technology] The media system in the United States could have developed into something very different fr0m what it is today. In fact, there was an era in which significant media reform was considered. This was a time when media consumers were tired of constant advertising, bias, and control by corporate entities, [...]

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Todd H. WeirSecularism and Religion in Nineteenth-Century Germany: The Rise of the Fourth Confession

December 1, 2014

If you look up the word “secular” in just about about any English-language dictionary, you’ll find that the word denotes, among other things, something that is not religious. This “not-religious-ness” would seem to be the modern essence of the word. If a government is secular, it can’t be religious. If a court is secular, it [...]

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Brian PurnellFighting Jim Crow in the County of Kings: The Congress of Racial Equality in Brooklyn

November 25, 2014

Scholars interested in the history of the civil rights movement in the North will definitely be interested in Brian Purnell‘s new book, Fighting Jim Crow in the County of Kings: The Congress of Racial Equality in Brooklyn (University Press of Kentucky, 2014). This case study of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) in Brooklyn joins one of the fastest-growing [...]

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Edward Ross DickinsonSex, Freedom and Power in Imperial Germany 1880-1914

November 19, 2014

[Cross-posted from New Books in Intellectual History]  In this interview with historian Edward Ross Dickinson we talk about sex. Well, actually we talk about the talk about sex. Since Michel Foucault’s epochal work History of Sexuality (1976) how moderns talked about sex has been a central concern of cultural and intellectual historians. Foucault linked a number of nineteenth-century phenomena, such [...]

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Steven ConnAmericans Against the City: Anti-Urbanism in the Twentieth Century

November 12, 2014

[Cross-posted from New Books in Urban Studies] Americans have a paradoxical relationship with cities, Steven Conn argues in his new book, Americans Against the City: Anti-Urbanism in the Twentieth Century (Oxford University Press, 2014).  Nearly three-quarters of the population lives near an urban center, the result of a centuries-old, global trend that reflects not just industrialization but the role cities [...]

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Kirsten WeldPaper Cadavers: The Archives of Dictatorship in Guatemala

November 6, 2014

[Cross-posted from New Books in Latin American Studies] Kirsten Weld‘s book Paper Cadavers: The Archives of Dictatorship in Guatemala (Duke University Press, 2014) tells the story of the 2005 discovery of a vast police archive in Guatemala. Officials had long denied that it existed, and for good reason, because it documented years of kidnapping and murder under the auspices of [...]

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Terry GolwayMachine Made: Tammany Hall and the Creation of Modern American Politics

October 31, 2014

For most Americans, Tammany Hall is a symbol of all that was dishonest, corrupt, illiberal, and venal about urban government and the political machines that ran it in the past, a shorthand for larceny on a grand scale. Not so, says Terry Golway. In his new book Machine Made: Tammany Hall and the Creation of [...]

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Thierry CruvellierThe Master of Confessions: The Making of a Khmer Rouge Torturer

October 31, 2014

[Cross-posted from New Books in Genocide Studies] What is justice for a man who supervised the interrogation and killing of thousands?  Especially a man who now claims to be a Christian and to be, at least in some ways and cases, repentant for his crimes? Thierry Cruvellier has written a fascinating book about the trial of ‘Duch’ [...]

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