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Archive for 'Book Review'

Rise of the Political Technologists

This is a guest post by James Snell
Review: Nothing is True and Everything is Possible by Peter Pomerantsev
For a generation such as mine, which attained political consciousness after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet system in the last century, it can sometimes seem strange that the iron fist of [...]

Ignorant, Erroneous, Unjustified

Book Review:
Owen Jones, The Establishment: And how they get away with it, (Allen Lane, 2014).
Owen Jones, the Oxford-educated left-wing Guardian columnist, has written a book about the establishment. For Jones, the establishment comprises anyone he does not like. Its main activity is to conspire against the working class.
Some of his claims are simply startling. For example, he [...]

Eichmann’s Fanaticism

Book Review
Bettina Stangneth, Eichmann Before Jerusalem: The Unexamined Life of a Mass Murderer (Alfred A. Knopf, 2014) 608pp.
When I first became aware of Bettina Stangneth’s new book on Eichmann, I rolled my eyes and asked myself a question: how much of the book is really about Hannah Arendt?
This cynicism is not unfounded. The main [...]

Jamie Bartlett: The Dark Net

The Dark Net opens with an account of a chilling website, ‘Assassination Market’.  Here you are invited to predict the time of death of well known public figures, with the promise of a cash jackpot if you guess right. But – would it just be a guess?
Much else lurks in the underbelly of the Net, [...]

On Slave Reparations: A response to Boonin: 2. Recipients and beneficiaries

This is the second post in a series of three responding to the arguments made in favour of reparations for slavery by David Boonin in his book, Should Race Matter? Unusual Answers to the Usual Questions. The first post can be seen here.
As I commented in my last post, Boonin argues that “the U.S government has [...]

On Slave Reparations: A response to Boonin: 1. Causation

In 2011 Cambridge University Press published philosopher David Boonin’s book, Should Race Matter? Unusual Answers to the Usual Questions. Chapters 2 and 3 of the book deal with the idea that America owes slave reparations to its black population. In 2001 the conservative commentator David Horowitz wrote Ten Reasons Why Reparations for Blacks is a Bad Idea [...]

A journey through Twenty-First Century antisemitism

Review by Karl Pfeifer
Some Of My Best Friends: A Journey Through Twenty-First Century Antisemitism, by Ben Cohen
This well-edited volume contains selected thought-provoking articles by Ben Cohen, written in this century. His subject is the crude, violent “Bierkeller” antisemitism and the polite, modulated, ostensibly reasonable antisemitism, called nowadays “anti-Zionism” and so often expressed in the “progressive” [...]

Mao’s Murders

The most memorable historical book I have read in the last few years is Frank Dikötter’s Mao’s Great Famine: The History of China’s Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-62 about the manmade famine responsible for tens of millions of deaths in Communist China. (I reviewed the book here).  Dikötter has recently had published the prequel: The Tragedy [...]

Antisemitism: A Specific Phenomenon

Guest post by Karl Pfeifer
Antisemitism: A Specific Phenomenon by Clemens Heni sets out to analyze the trivialization of the Holocaust and in many cases the cosmopolitan character of anti-Zionism in the age of resurgent Islamism. Heni shows how old antisemitic assertions and insinuations are being reinvigorated while Jews, once again, are set up as scapegoats [...]

“I am going to annihilate you”: Five Books on Marx and Marxists

This is a cross post from Under the Ocular Tree.
Phil at A Very Public Sociologist reminds us that Sunday would have been Karl Marx’s 195th birthday. This, he believes, is something well worthwhile commemorating. The way he has done so is to list his five favourite books on Marx and Marxism.  He challenges us to also [...]