SOCIAL THEORY AND SOCIAL SCIENCE
Carver, Terrell. Marx. [Classic Thinkers.] Polity Press, Cambridge [etc.] 2018. xi, 204 pp. £55.00; € 64.41. (Paper: £16.99; € 19.89; E-book: £16.99; € 23.55).
Karl Marx was the first theorist of global capitalism and is perhaps its most trenchant critic to date. Professor Carver gives us an overview of Marx's ideas by framing them within concepts of today, from class struggle and progress to democracy and exploitation. Taking Marx's work in his pamphleteering, journalism, speeches, correspondence, and published books as central, the author shows how a nineteenth-century thinker has been made into the “Marxes” we know today: an icon of communist revolution, a demonic figure during the Cold War, and a humanist philosopher. The author unwraps the historical, intellectual, and political theories of Marx's writings, highlighting the distinct areas where they appeal directly to the twenty-first-century world.
Institutional and Organizational Analysis. Concepts and Applications. [By] Alston, Eric, Alston, Lee J., Mueller, Bernardo [and] Nonnenmacher, Tomas. [New Approaches to Social and Economic History.] Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2018. xiv, 393 pp. £71.99. (Paper: £24.99; E-book: $28.00).
Since the 1970s, institutional and organizational analysis has developed into a powerful toolkit that argues that institutions and norms rather than geography, culture, or technology are the primary causes of sustainable development. In the three parts that this introduction to the concepts and applications of institutional and organizational analysis comprises, Parts one (From institutions to economic outcomes) and two (From economic outcomes to political performance) analyse the normal operation of economic and political systems and the interaction among institutions, property rights, technology, and economic performance. In Part three (The dynamics of economic and political development), the authors explore broader explanations of the divergent development trajectories of nations around the world.
Lindahl, Hans. Authority and the Globalisation of Inclusion and Exclusion. [Global Law Series.] Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2018. xi, 463 pp. £71.99. (Paper: £ 27.99; E-book: $32.00).
Protracted and bitter resistance by alter and anti-globalization movements shows that globalization of law transpires as globalization of inclusion and exclusion. Professor Lindahl examines how legal orders must be structured, so as to ensure that emergent global legal orders include without excluding. He proposes a novel and general concept of legal order, illustrating the continuities and discontinuities leading from state law to emergent global legal orders and integrating sociological, doctrinal and philosophical analyses to offer a comprehensive and systematic interpretation of emergent global legal orders.
Lorand Matory, J. The Fetish Revisited. Marx, Freud, and the Gods Black People Make. Duke University Press, Durham (NC) [etc.] 2018. Ill. $104.95. (Paper: $28.95).
Since the early-modern encounter between African and European merchants on the Guinea Coast, European social critics have invoked African gods as metaphors for misplaced value and agency, using the term “fetishism” to assert the irrationality. Drawing on thirty-six years of fieldwork, professor of anthropology Lorand Matory casts an Afro-Atlantic eye on European theory to show fetishism as conceived by Marx and Freud both illuminates and misrepresents Africa's human-made gods. Challenging assumptions about the nature of gods, the author offers a novel perspective on the social roots of these African and European understandings of collective action, while relating European social theory to the racism suffered by Africans and assimilated Jews alike.
Polanyi, Karl. Economy and Society. Selected Writings. Ed. by Cangiani, Michele and Thomasberger, Claus. Polity Press, Cambridge [etc.] 2018. vi, 340 pp. £55.00. (Paper: £18.99; E-book: £17.99).
This book brings together Polanyi's most important articles and essays to give a unique selection of his essential shorter writings, alternating classic texts with significant but previously little-known pieces, while highlighting the coherence and richness of Polanyi's theoretical and political approach. The volume includes his interwar writings, which deal with the world economic crisis and the socialist alternative to conservative and fascist developments, his reflection on political theory and the international situation after the war, and his comparative studies of economic institutions. Polanyi's political writings are complemented and supported by the critique of economic determinism and what he termed “our obsolete market mentality”.
Schöttler, Peter. Nach der Angst. Geschichtswissenschaft vor und nach dem “linguistic turn”. Westfälisches Dampfboot, Münster 2018. 291 pp. € 35.00.
Are we facing an end to history as a social science? Is everything just “literature” in the future? In this book, Professor Schöttler presents a counter-thesis. Since the paradigm shifted to social history and mental history of ideas, the question of the significance of language – in social structure as well as in science – has gained a new importance. Language is more than just a medium of communication; according to the author, it shapes all thinking in a society, such as mindsets, ideologies, and discourse formations. Language and discourse analyses therefore do not compete with social history but open up important new dimensions in this field.
“Arise Ye Wretched of the Earth”. The First International in a Global Perspective. Ed. by Bensimon, Fabrice, Deluermoz, Quentin, and Moisand, Jeanne. [Studies in Global Social History, Vol. 29.] Brill, Leiden [etc.] 2018. xiv, 404 pp. Ill. € 140.00; $168.00. (E-book: Open Access).
The International Working Men's Association struggled for the emancipation of labour by organizing solidarity with strikers and taking their side in major events but was forced to split up in 1872. This volume intends to complete the IWMA's initial mapping. The twenty-four contributions are grouped in three parts. Part one deals with the organizations that preceded the IWMA and underlines the central role played by London. Part two reviews the activities of local sections, studying both their local roots and their connections with transnational political cultures. Part three addresses the influence of some personalities and the ideologies constructed based on their ideas. See also Ad Knotter's review in this volume, pp. 330–333.
Colonialism, Institutional Change, and Shifts in Global Labour Relations. Ed. by Hofmeester, Karin and de Zwart, Pim. [Work around the Globe: Historical Comparisons and Connections.] Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam 2018. 373 pp. € 135.00.
In this book, ten experts seek to explain the development of labour relations by looking at the institutions pertaining to various economic resources in society: commodities, land, labour, and capital, c.1500–2000. Colonial rule, which originated from the European quest for exotic commodities, manifested itself in the systems of production and trade of global commodities. The first and longest section in this volume is therefore devoted to institutions related to commodity production and trade. Part two covers land and labour market institutions established by colonizers to produce the commodities they needed. The final part comprises two examinations of the effects of monetization and taxation on labour relations.
Delalande, Nicolas. La lutte et l'entraide. L’âge des solidarités ouvrières. [L'univers historique.] Editions du Seuil, Paris 2019. 361 pp. € 24.00.
For over a century, from the 1860s to the 1970s, the labour, socialist, anarchist, communist, and syndicalist movements were the bearers of a powerful internationalist project aimed at globalizing worker solidarity, overcoming potentially divisive national and linguistic differences. Based on many archival and edited sources, Professor Delalande analyses the collection and distribution of support money and reveals internationalism as mutual aid and cross-border support practice of workers and their organizations. This ambitious project was often chaotic, conflictual, and contradictory but nevertheless left a considerable imprint on the end of the nineteenth century and the entire twentieth century. See also Ad Knotter's review in this volume, pp. 330–333.
Gerbner, Katherine. Christian Slavery. Conversion and Race in the Protestant Atlantic World. [Early American Studies.] University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia (PA) 2018. 280 pp. Ill. Maps. $39.95; £31.00.
Anti-conversion sentiment was one of the defining features of Protestant slave societies in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. Protestant slave owners established governments and legal codes based on an ideology of “Protestant Supremacy” that excluded the majority of enslaved men and women from Christian communities. Quaker, Anglican, and Moravian missionaries responded with a vision of Christian slavery, arguing that Christianity would make slaves hardworking and loyal. Dr Gerbner shows how the contentions between slave owners, enslaved people and missionaries transformed the practice of Protestantism and the language of race in the early modern Atlantic world.
The Global 1960s. Convention, Contest, and Counterculture. Ed. by Chaplin, Tamara and Pieper Mooney, Jadwiga E.. [Decades in Global History.] Routledge, London [etc.] 2018. xvii, 301 pp. Ill. £100.00. (Paper: £31.99; E-book: £16.00).
The geographically and chronologically broad scope of this volume comprises a set of analyses that span the late 1950s to the early 1970s. Written by an international group of contributors, the fourteen chapters address topics ranging from the socialist scramble for Africa to the Naxalite movement in West Bengal, the Troubles in Northern Ireland, global media coverage of Israel, Cold War politics in Hong Kong cinema, sexual revolution in France, and cultural imperialism in Latin America. The authors explore the contest between convention and counterculture that shaped this decade, emphasizing that while the 1960s are well-known for liberation, activism, and protest against the establishment, traditional hierarchies, and social norms remained remarkably entrenched.
Hanebrink, Paul. A Specter Haunting Europe. The Myth of Judeo-Bolshevism. Harvard University Press, Cambridge (MA) 2018. 353 pp. $29.95; £21.95; € 27.00.
For much of the twentieth century, Europe was haunted by a threat of the myth of Judeo-Bolshevism, imagining that communism was a Jewish plot to destroy the nations of Europe. Professor Hanebrink first focuses on Central and Eastern Europe, where the stereotype of the Jewish Bolshevik figured in the politics of Hungary, Romania, and Poland after World War I and persisted throughout the many political ruptures and transformations of the twentieth century. After the Holocaust, the spectre of Judeo-Bolshevism became part of the Cold War world and it persists to this day in the politics of right-wing nationalism.
Hien, Wolfgang. Die Arbeit des Körpers. Von der Hochindustrialisierung bis zur neoliberalen Gegenwart. [Kritik & Utopie.] Mandelbaum, Vienna 2018. 344 pp. € 25.00.
This study is a transdisciplinary history of industrial work, expanded to areas of service work and covering worker protection, not in the sense of institutional history but in that of an everyday story from below. Dr Hien examines the period from the 1870s till 2008, elaborating on different sides of progress. Prosperity and wealth are built on mass physical suffering of the working classes, out of which grew anger and resistance that led to huge strikes. This reaction of mass workers to their unbearable working and living conditions resulted in improved working conditions and global struggle for human dignity in the world of work.
Imlay, Talbot C. The Practice of Socialist Internationalism. European Socialists and International Politics, 1914–1960. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2018. xi, 480 pp. £85.00.
Through internationalism, European socialists sought to forge a new practice of international relations, one that would emerge from their collective efforts to elaborate socialist approaches to pressing issues of international politics, such as post-war reconstruction, European integration, and decolonization. Dr Imlay examines the attempts of the British, French, and German socialist parties to cooperate with one another on concrete international issues. Drawing on archival research from twelve countries, this work spans the years from the World War I to the early 1960s, paying particular attention to the two post-war periods, during which national and international politics were recast.
Medykowski, Witold W. Macht Arbeit Frei? German Economic Policy and Forced Labor of Jews in the General Government, 1939–1943. [Jews of Poland.] Academic Studies Press, Brighton (MA) 2018. xxxiv, 418 pp. Ill. Maps. $129.00. (Paper: $45.95; E-book: https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctv75d8v5).
This study covers German economic policy during World War II, revealing the interdependence of economics and warfare. Dr Medykowski examines forced labour as performed by Jews, initially in the ghettos and subsequently following mass deportations to the death camps, when only able-bodied men and women capable of working for the Germans could survive, with forced labour increasingly used in the armament industry from 1942. The author examines whether work really meant survival by identifying the actors and the conflicting interests that existed, for example between the Wehrmacht and the SS. The appendix contains statistics, maps, and photos.
Migration and Multi-ethnic Communities. Mobile People from the Late Middle Ages to the Present. Ed. by Ojala-Fulwood, Maija. De Gruyter, Berlin [etc.] 2018. vi, 306 pp. € 69.95; $80.99; £63.50. (E-book: € 69.95; $80.99; £63.50).
This book offers ten multi-layered case studies on aspects of migration. The chapters will demonstrate how questions of controlled migration, movement of labour, improvement of one's life and interactions between people of different origins have existed over the last five hundred years. Other topics discussed are ethnicity and otherness, revealing how modest mobility can have an enormous impact on local societies and regional economies and shedding light on the multiple contradictions and paradoxes embedded in migration and mobility. Using different methodologies, the authors interweave these grass-roots experiences in the overarching story of migration and mobility.
The Prospect of Global History. Ed. by Belich, James, Darwin, John, Frenz, Margret, and Wickham, Chris. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2016. xiv, 222 pp. Maps. £35.00.
This publication arises from the conference New Directions in Global History, which took place at the University of Oxford in September 2012. The editors see this volume as the first in a new series in global history featuring historical depth, a broad geographical range, and the concrete application of different approaches to global history, engaging with multiple methodologies, coming from an interdisciplinary perspective. The volume seeks perspectives on history from East Asian and Islamic sources as well as European ones. The nine contributions begin with two methodological discussions, followed by seven essays with a historical and chronological orientation. See also Peer Vries's review in volume 64:1, pp. 111–121, and Cátia Antunes's response, pp. 123–127.
Toupin, Louise. Wages for Housework. The History of an International Feminist Movement (1972–1977). Transl. [from French] by Roth, Käthe. Pluto Press, London 2018 (2014). x, 323 pp. Ill. £75.00. (Paper, E-book: £19.99).
“Wages for Housework” was a campaign of the International Feminist Collective, launched at the beginning of second-wave Western feminism. Having housework recognized as real work constituted one of the most important theoretical concerns. Drawing on extensive archival research, Dr Toupin examines the history of this movement between 1972 and 1977, portraying the International Feminist Collective and considering how the Wages for Housework perspective was embodied in action. The afterword is devoted to interviews with figureheads of the Wages for Housework perspective Mariarosa Dalla Costa and Silvia Federici, addressing the question of the evolution of social reproduction in the domestic and public sphere in the context of neo-liberal globalization.
Bhandar, Brenna. Colonial Lives of Property. Law, Land, and Racial Regimes of Ownership. [Global and Insurgent Legalities.] Duke University Press, Durham (NC) [etc.] 2018. xi, 265 pp. $99.95. (Paper: $25.95).
Dr Bhandar examines in this book how modern property law contributes to the formation of racial subjects in settler colonies and the development of racial capitalism. Examining both historical cases and ongoing processes of settler colonialism in Canada, Australia, and Israel and Palestine, the author shows how colonial appropriation of indigenous lands depends upon ideologies of European racial superiority. Property law, based on English concepts, legitimates and rationalizes settler colonial practices, while racializing those deemed unfit to own property. The solution to these enduring racial and economic inequities requires developing a new political imaginary of property, in which freedom is connected to shared practices of use and community rather than to individual possession.
Chiocchetti, Paolo. The Radical Left Party Family in Western Europe, 1989–2015. [Routledge Studies in Radical History and Politics.] Routledge, Abingdon [etc.] 2017. xviii, 235 pp. £110.00. (E-book: £35.99).
In this book, Dr Chiocchetti traces the trajectory of the Western European radical left from 1989 to 2015. After the collapse of communism, this party family renewed itself and attempted to fill the vacuum of representation of the disaffected working class, while the radical left became a significant factor in contemporary politics. The author investigates why, despite some electoral gains and recent breakthroughs, it failed to embody a credible alternative to neo-liberalism. Combining aggregate data from seventeen countries, case studies on Germany, Italy, and France, and comparative methods, he accurately charts the evolution of the nature, strength, cohesion and influence of the Western European radical left.
Frontiers of Labor. Comparative Histories of the United States and Australia. Ed. by Patmore, Greg and Stromquist, Shelton. [The Working Class in American History.] University of Illinois Press, Urbana (IL) [etc.] 2018. x, 375 pp. $99.00. (Paper: $32.00; E-book: $19.95).
This collection of eighteen essays brings together historians who explore the comparative and transnational landscapes of labour history in both Australia and the United States, examining five major areas: the impact of World War I on labour and socialist movements; the history of coerced labour through varying forms of indentured service; convict labour and slavery; the impact of immigration on labour movements; forms of working-class collective action; and the struggles related to trade union democracy and independent working-class politics. Throughout the volume, many essays highlight how hard-won transnational ties allowed Australians and Americans to influence each other's trade union and political cultures.
The Ghetto in Global History. 1500 to the Present. Ed. by Goldman, Wendy Z. and William Trotter, Joe Jr. Routledge, Oxon [etc.] 2018. xvii, 359 pp. Ill. £105.00. (Paper: £36.99; E-book: £18.50).
As a concept, a policy and an experience, the ghetto has served to maintain social, religious, and racial hierarchies over the past five centuries. In this volume, comprising seventeen contributions in four historical periods, the ghetto is examined in four separate contexts based on a chronological and transnational approach, covering the first ghettos for Jews in early modern Europe, the Nazi use of ghettos, the enclosure of African Americans in segregated areas in the United States, and the extreme segregation of blacks in South Africa. The contributors explore issues of discourse, power, and control, examine the internal structures of authority that prevailed and document the lived experiences of ghetto inhabitants.
Kujala, Antti and Danielsbacka, Mirkka. Reciprocity in Human Societies. From Ancient Times to the Modern Welfare State. Palgrave Macmillan, New York [etc.] 2019. ix, 225 pp. € 69.54. (E-book: € 53.54).
This book combines Mauss's gift theory with Moore's idea of mutual obligations linking rulers and ruled. Teasing out the interrelatedness of these approaches, the authors suggest that evolutionary psychology reveals a human tendency to reciprocate and collaborate. Describing various manifestations of reciprocity between elites and the common people, the authors discuss various historical societies and different models of the current welfare state, such as the Inca and Maya societies, early modern Japan, the Nordic countries, the French army in World War I, and the Finnish army in 1941–1944, and inequality in the United States and other industrialized countries.
Labor Justice across the Americas. Ed. by Fink, Leon and Manuel Palacio, Juan. [The Working Class in American History.] University of Illinois Press, Urbana (IL) [etc.] 2018. vii, 281 pp. $95.00. (Paper: $35.00; E-book: $30.00).
The introduction of specialized labour courts was a milestone in the development of the legal system in the Americas during the first half of the twentieth century. In this edited volume, the contributions shed light on how, when, and why these specialized courts took shape in the different parts of the Americas. Ranging from Canada and the United States to Central America, Argentina, Brazil, and Chile, the ten authors seek common factors in the appearance of labour courts while recognizing the specific nature of the creative process in each nation. The courts proved to be a key instrument for both effective application of new labour laws and containment of social conflict.
Micro-Spatial Histories of Global Labour. Ed. by De Vito, Christian G. and Gerritsen, Anne. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham 2018. xxiii, 357 pp. Ill. Maps. £92.00. (E-book: £73.50).
This volume explores the idea of combining micro-history with the concept of space. Focusing on primary sources and awareness of the historical discontinuities and unevennesses characterizes the global history that emerges, with the twelve contributions based on the labour perspective resulting in a micro-spatial history of labour that addresses management and recruitment of labour, voluntary and coerced spatial mobility, political perception and representation, and own agency and social networks of workers. The individual chapters cover the late medieval Eastern Mediterranean, present-day Sierra Leone, early modern China and Italy, eighteenth-century Cuba and the Falklands, as well as the journeys of a missionary between India and Brazil and those of Christian captives across the Ottoman Empire and Spain.
What Is Work? Gender at the Crossroads of Home, Family, and Business from the Early Modern Era to the Present. Ed. by Sarti, Raffaella, Bellavitis, Anna and Martini, Manuela. [International Studies in Social History.] Berghahn Books, New York [etc.] 2018. viii, 387 pp. Ill. $130.00; £92.00. (E-book: $34.95).
Every society throughout history has defined what counts as work, and what does not. More often than not, those demarcations are inextricably linked to considerations of gender. This edited volume offers a multi-disciplinary approach to understanding labour within the highly gendered realm of household economies. Drawing from scholarship on gender history, economic sociology, family history, civil law, and feminist economics, these ten essays explore the changing and often contested boundaries between what was and is considered work in different Euro-American contexts over several centuries, with consideration for the ambiguities and biases that have shaped mainstream conceptions of work across all social sectors.
Ainsley, Claire. The New Working Class. How to Win Hearts, Minds and Votes. Policy Press, Bristol 2018. viii, 200 pp. £12.99. (E-book: £12.99).
While predicting the party someone was likely to vote for used to be straightforward, the association between class and political party has weakened. Analysts conclude that factors such as age, education, a decent job or national independence (in the case of Scotland) have become new electoral dividing lines. Dr Ainsley argues that these factors supplement rather than replace social class as an explanatory mechanism and in this book seeks to understand who the new working class are, based on economic, social, and cultural factors, and to outline their values and attitudes offering practical recommendations for political parties to reconnect with the electorate and regain trust.
Bologna, Sergio. The Rise of the European Self-Employed Workforce. [Sociology, No. 4.] Mimesis, Milan [etc.] 2018, 262 pp. $24.00; £19.00; € 22.00. (E-book: $16.18).
The five essays in this book were written over the past twenty years, with the intention of creating a cultural identity of freelancers in the digital era. Dr Bologna analyses changing structures in the contemporary labour market, investigating the difference between employees and freelancers, in terms of their existential experiences and their social relationships, in public and private spheres alike, arguing that development of a shared identity among freelancers can function as the first step to establishing a network of cooperation and solidarity, culminating in the formation of a union of freelance workers.
Fleurbaey, Marc with Bouin, Olivier (et al.) A Manifesto for Social Progress. Ideas for a Better Society. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2018. xiii, 235 pp. £34.00. (Paper: £14.99; E-book: $16.00).
This book outlines how to rethink and reform our key institutions to create better societies based on core principles of human dignity, sustainability, and justice. Basing their vision on the findings of over 300 social scientists involved in the collaborative, interdisciplinary International Panel on Social Progress and relying on state-of-the-art scholarship, these social scientists have reviewed the possibility of all relevant forms of long-term social change, explored current challenges, and synthesized their knowledge in order to improve the main institutions of modern societies. Their purpose is to convey the hope that a better society is possible and to generate initiatives conducive to changing the face of the globe.
Francisco-Menchavez, Valerie. The Labor of Care. Filipina Migrants and Transnational Families in the Digital Age. [The Asian American Experience.] University of Illinois Press, Urbana (IL) 2018. xvii, 231 pp. $99.00. (Paper: $28.00; E-book: $19.95).
This study focuses on how neo-liberal structural shifts in migration shape and change intimate relations and definitions of care in Filipino families. Drawing on interviews and close collaboration with a group of working migrant mothers, explained in the methodological appendix, Professor Francisco-Menchavez examines the emotional and material consequences and the recasting of roles that emerge from family separation, paying particular attention to how technologies like Facebook and Skype bridge distances while supporting traditional family dynamics. As the author shows, migrants also build communities of care in their host countries. The overall argument is that multiple sets of people from multiple locations maintain the transnational family as a functioning family form.
Global Perspectives on Workers’ and Labour Organizations. Ed. by Atzeni, Maurizio and Ness, Immanuel. [Work, Organization, and Employment.] Springer, Singapore [etc.] 2018. xvi, 173 pp. € 125.34. (E-book: € 95.19).
The nine chapters in this book are case studies from across the globe on forms of collective identity and organization used by workers in precarious work. Part one deals with workers employed in activities related to life sustainability in cities, with cases on the hospitality, retail, domestic and textile sectors. Part two elaborates on work processes in traditional industrial value-producing activities, such as the construction, export-led automotive and electronics industries, or the service industries associated with the use of new digital technologies. The book unveils the working conditions affecting this labour force and shows forms and processes of organization put in place by these groups of workers to improve their working conditions. See also Nicolas Ratto's review in this volume, pp. 336–339.
Kaufman, Scott. The Environment and International History. [New Approaches to International History.] Bloomsbury, New York [etc.] 2018. xiii, 210 pp. Ill. $79.20. (Paper: $24.26; E-book: $19.40).
Giving environmental protection priority on par with social, economic, political, and military concerns is one of today's main challenges. Professor Kaufman explores how imperialism, war, and divergence of interests between the developed and underdeveloped world have affected plants, animals, and humans worldwide. The book opens with the first international environmental agreement, the 1900 Convention for the Preservation of Wild Animals, Birds and Fish in Africa, and ends with the Paris Climate Accords of 2015. As neither of these pacts has resolved the environmental issues, the conclusion provides not only a summary of accomplishments, but also an overview of the challenges that remain.
Lloyd, Anthony. The Harms of Work. An Ultra-Realist Account of the Service Economy. [Studies in Social Harm.] Bristol University Press, Bristol 2018. x, 208 pp. £80.00. (E-book: £26.99).
Service work reflects a broad category of occupations. This study examines the connection between individuals, their working conditions and management culture in the service sector, highlighting the working conditions and organizational practices that employees experience as normal and routine but within which multiple harms occur. Dr Lloyd has focused on occupations that facilitate engagement within consumer capitalism, such as the night-time economy, gambling, shipping (particularly Black Friday and other consumer spectacles), and tourism. Using data from a long-term ethnographic study of the service economy of Teesside (north-east England), the author investigates the reorganization of labour markets and the shift from security to flexibility.
Mudge, Stephanie L. Leftism Reinvented. Western Parties from Socialism to Neoliberalism. Harvard University Press, Cambridge (MA) 2018. xxviii, 560 pp. $39.95; £28.95; € 36.00.
Left-leaning political parties play an important role as representatives of the poor and disempowered. In this analysis of the history of the Swedish and German Social Democrats, the British Labour Party and the American Democratic Party, Professor Mudge shows how Keynesian economists came to speak for left parties by the early 1960s, envisioning their task in terms of discretionary, politically sensitive economic management. In the 1980s, a new kind of economist, who viewed the advancement of markets as the main task of leftist parties, came to the fore. Meanwhile, as the loyalty of voters to leftist parties waned, professional strategists were called upon to “spin” party messages. Ultimately, leftist parties undermined themselves, leaving a representative vacuum in their wake. See also Dennie Oude Nijhuis's review in this volume, pp. 334–336.
Towards a Decent Labour Market for Low-Waged Migrant Workers. Ed. by Rijken, Conny and de Lange, Tesseltje. Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam 2018. 282 pp. € 95.00.
In this volume, which addresses the legal status and labour situation of non-EU and EU low-waged migrant workers, research is presented on policies and practices in pursuit of the right balance between the economic ambitions and the negative consequences thereof for labour market dynamics, such as downward wage pressures, unfair competition, the abuse of migrant workers, and the long-term setback for the children of previously low-waged migrant workers, covering imbalances between free market mechanisms, labour migration policies, labour market protection, and corrective mechanisms to protect migrant workers. The twelve contributions shed light on their causes, consequences, and interrelatedness with other factors.
CONTINENTS AND COUNTRIES
Middle Classes in Africa. Changing Lives and Conceptual Challenges. Ed. by Kroeker, Lena, O'Kane, David and Scharrer, Tabea. [Frontiers of Globalization.] Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke [etc.] xiii, 376 pp. Ill. € 117.69. (E-book: € 91.62).
This volume challenges the concept of the new African middle class through theoretical and empirical insights into changing lives in sub-Saharan Africa. Diverse middle classes are on the rise, but existing models of class cannot easily be transposed to the African continent. The editors present a new mode of investigation on class identity in Africa, focusing on qualitative and not just quantitative aspects of class. Empirical contributions, on e.g. Ghana, Botswana, South Africa, Namibia, Kenya, and Madagascar, address both African histories of class formation and the political roles of the middle classes, and examine the important interdependencies that transcend intergenerational, urban-rural, and class divides.
Gomez, Michael A. African Dominion. A New History of Empire in Early and Medieval West Africa. Princeton University Press, Princeton (NJ) 2018. viii, 505 pp. Maps. $45.00; £37.95.
Interweaving political and social history and drawing on a rich array of sources, including Arabic manuscripts, oral histories, and recent archaeological findings, Professor Gomez unveils a new vision of how categories of ethnicity, race, gender, and caste emerged in Africa and in global history more generally. Focusing on the Savannah and Sahel regions, the author traces exchanges of ideas and influences with North Africa and the Central Islamic Lands by way of merchants, scholars, and pilgrims. The proliferation of Islam in West Africa, in tandem with intensifying commerce that included slaves, resulted in a series of political experiments unique to the region, culminating in the rise of empire.
Krug, Jessica A. Fugitive Modernities. Kisama and the Politics of Freedom. Duke University Press, Durham (NC) [etc.] 2018. xiii, 260 pp. Maps. $99.95. (Paper: $25.95).
During the early seventeenth century, Kisama emerged in West Central Africa (present-day Angola) as communities for those fleeing the violence of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. The fugitives mounted effective resistance to European colonialism despite the absence of centralized authority or a common language. In this book, Professor Krug explores the intellectual, political, and social histories of the Kisama. Drawing on archives in Angola, Brazil, Portugal, and Spain, as well as on oral histories, linguistics, and ethnographic fieldwork in various maroon communities in Brazil and villages throughout geographical Kisama Angola, the author follows the idea of Kisama to the Americas, where fugitives in e.g. Brazil used it to articulate politics in fugitive slave communities.
The Art of Solidarity. Visual and Performative Politics in Cold War Latin America. Ed. by Mor, Jessica Stites and del Carmen Suescun Pozas, Maria. University of Texas Press, Austin (TX) 2018. vi, 310 pp. Ill. $90.00. (Paper: $29.95).
Many artists responded to Cold War struggles by engaging in activist art practice, using creative expression to mobilize social change. The eight contributions in this volume examine how these creative practices in arts and culture contributed to transnational solidarity campaigns that connected people across the Americas from the early twentieth century through the Cold War and its immediate aftermath. Essay topics range across regions and social groups, from the work of lesbian activists in Mexico City in the late 1970s and the 1980s, through exchanges and transmissions of folk-music practices from Cuba to the United States, to uses of Chilean arpilleras to oppose and protest military dictatorship.
Moving Against the System. The 1968 Congress of Black Writers and the Making of Global Consciousness. Ed. and with an introd. by Austin, David. [Black Critique.] Pluto Press, London 2018. xiii, 320 pp. Ill. £75.00. (Paper, E-book: £19.99).
In Montreal in 1968, at the congress of Black writers, activists, and political figures, the unique challenges and struggles facing their Black brothers and sisters were discussed. In this carefully constructed montage of leadership, dynamics, and substance of what became an international movement, Austin provides a contextual and critical introduction to the contributions, speeches and debates by C.L.R. James, Robert Hill, Walter Rodney, James Forman, Stokely Carmichael, and many others. The thirteen essays reflect the ideas of leading pan-African thinkers and freedom fighters gathered at, according to the author, the most important North American intellectual event of 1968.
Grisaffi, Thomas. Coca Yes, Cocaine No. How Bolivia's Coca Growers Reshaped Democracy. Duke University Press, Durham (NC) [etc.] 2019. viii, 261 pp. Ill. Maps. $99.95. (Paper: $25.95).
When Evo Morales, leader of the Movement toward Socialism (MAS), became Bolivia's president in 2006, coca growers celebrated his election and the possibility of scaling up their form of grass-roots democracy to the national level. The coca leaf plays a central role, symbolizing collective identification, on the one hand, and crime, on the other hand. Drawing on a decade of ethnographic fieldwork with coca union leaders, peasant farmers, drug traffickers, and politicians, Dr Grisaffi tells the story from Morales's inauguration to the moment he failed to meet all the demands of his constituents. The realization of alternative democratic models collapsed due to international pressure in the war on drugs.
Green, James N. Exile within Exiles. Herbert Daniel, Gay Brazilian Revolutionary. Duke University Press, Durham (NC) [etc.] 2018. xv, 322 pp. Ill. $104.95. (Paper: $27.95).
Herbert Daniel was a significant figure in Brazilian leftist revolutionary politics and social activism from the mid-1960s until his death in 1992. As a student, he joined a revolutionary guerrilla organization but was forced to conceal his sexual identity, a situation Daniel described as internal exile. In the 1980s, he became engaged in social activism to champion gay rights, feminism, environmental justice, and fighting discrimination against those with hiv/aids. In this book, Professor Green paints a portrait of Herbert Daniel, using his personal and political experiences to investigate opposition to Brazil's military dictatorship, the left's construction of a revolutionary masculinity, and the challenge that the transition to democracy posed to radical movements.
Mattos, Marcelo, Badaró. Laborers and Enslaved Workers. Experiences in Common in the Making of Rio de Janeiro's Working Class, 1850–1920. Transl. [from Portuguese] by Meirelles, Renata and de Barros, Frederico Machado. [International Studies in Social History, Vol. 29.] Berghahn, New York [etc.] 2017. viii, 175 pp. $110.00; £78.00.
In the nineteenth century, Rio de Janeiro was the capital of the Brazilian Empire, the country's main port, its most populous city, and the site of the first factories, and had a large urban population of enslaved workers. It was also the site of an incipient working-class consciousness that expressed itself across distinct social categories. In this volume, Professor Mattos analyses working-class formation, and focuses on the co-existence of enslaved and free workers in the years before the abolition of slavery, and especially on the impact that such shared experiences had on the process of working-class formation in Rio in the last decades of the nineteenth and the first decades of the twentieth century. See also Claudio Batalha's review in this volume, pp. 339–341.
Miki, Yuko. Frontiers of Citizenship. A Black and Indigenous History of Postcolonial Brazil. [Afro-Latin America.] Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2018. xix, 292 pp. Ill. Maps. £75.00. (Paper: £29.99; E-book: $80.00).
This book presents the history of race, nation, and citizenship in nineteenth-century Brazil. Through archival research that tells the stories of slaves, Indians, and settlers, Professor Miki challenges the idea that Brazilian Indians “disappeared” during the colonial era, paving the way for Latin America's largest black nation. The author argues that exclusion and inequality of indigenous people and those of African descent became embedded in the very construction of Brazil's inclusive nationhood, demonstrating that to understand the full scope of central themes in Latin American history – race and national identity, unequal citizenship, popular politics, and slavery and abolition – requires connecting the histories of both the African diaspora and the indigenous Americas.
Vidal Luna, Francisco and Klein, Herbert S.. An Economic and Demographic History of São Paulo, 1850–1950. [Social Science History.] Stanford University Press, Stanford (CA) 2018. xxv, 448 pp. Maps. $75.00.
The aim of this book is to explain how São Paulo changed from a frontier province of little importance into one of the most important agricultural and industrial regions in the world. The authors provide a synthetic overview of the growth of São Paulo from 1850 to 1950, analysing statistical data on demographics, agriculture, finance, trade, and infrastructure. Quantitative analysis of primary sources, including almanacs, censuses, newspapers, state and ministerial-level government documents, and annual government reports, offers granular insight into state building, federalism, the coffee economy, early industrialization, urbanization, and demographic shifts. In chronologically and structurally organized chapters, the authors compare São Paulo's transformation to that of other regions from the same period.
Draper, Susana. 1968 Mexico. Constellations of Freedom and Democracy. [Radical Americas.] Duke University Press, Durham (NC) [etc.] 2018. xvi, 251 pp. $99.95. (Paper: $25.95).
In recognition of the fiftieth anniversary of the protests, strikes, and struggles of 1968 across Europe, the United States, and Latin America, Professor Draper qualifies the 1968 movement in Mexico, challenges the dominant narrative of the movement that has emphasized the importance of the Tlatelolco Massacre and responses of male student leaders. The author reveals new archives of revolutionary participation that provide insight into how 1968 and its afterlives are understood, from marginal cinema collectives to women's cooperative experiments, and gives voice to Mexican Marxist philosophers, political prisoners, and women who participated in the movement, illustrating the wide diversity that inspired alternative forms of political participation.
Fokken, Margriet. Beyond Being Koelies and Kantraki. Constructing Hindostani Identities in Suriname in the Era of Indenture. Verloren, Hilversum 2018. 378 pp. Ill. € 39.00.
Originally from India and shipped to the Dutch colony of Suriname after the abolition of slavery, more than 34,000 Hindostani served as contract labourers to keep the plantation system afloat from 1873. Central to this dissertation is the perspective and identification of the Hindostani. Dr Fokken follows the journey of the Hindostani from recruitment, to shipment, travel experiences, arrival in Suriname, relocation to plantations, and their dispersal following the end of their contracts, either as city workers or as farmers. The annexes show overviews of e.g. the ships transporting emigrants to Suriname from Calcutta and the plantations with the highest number of Hindostani indentured labourers.
Ramsoedh, Hans. Surinaams onbehagen. Een sociale en politieke geschiedenis van Suriname 1865–2015. Verloren, Hilversum 2018. 368 pp. Ill. € 29.00.
With a population of over half a million and a diversity of population groups, languages, and religions, Suriname is one of the most segmented societies in the Caribbean. Dr Ramsoedh describes the social and political history of Suriname in the colonial period (1865–1945), the post-colonial period (1945–1975), and the period after independence (1975–2015), in which discomfort and simmering discontent (albeit not resulting in actions or resistance) is a constant undercurrent among part of the population. The lack of socio-economic perspective, failure of politics as an instrument for improvement, and the initial absence of a sense of community due to the segmentation of Surinamese society are highlighted. See also Dirk Kruijt's review in this volume, pp. 342–344.
United States of America
Akers Chacón, Justin. Radicals in the Barrio. Magonistas, Socialists, Wobblies, and Communists in the Mexican American Working Class. Haymarket Books, Chicago (IL) 2018. 719 pp. Ill. $27.95. (E-book: $14.99).
The long and deeply rooted history of the Mexican working class in the United States is interwoven in the experience of the labour movement as a whole. Epochs of rising class struggle have co-evolved with a tradition of Mexican labour radicalism referring to the formation of left-wing political ideologies that have informed collective action. Anti-capitalist political doctrine entered Mexico with European immigrants and developed in conjunction with indigenous and organic expressions of Mexican radicalism. Professor Akers Chacón documents how migratory workers carried with them radical political ideologies, new organizational models, and shared class experience, as they crossed into southwestern barrios during the first three decades of the twentieth century.
Clark, Daniel J. Disruption in Detroit. Autoworkers and the Elusive Postwar Boom. [The Working Class in American History.] University of Illinois Press, Urbana (IL) [etc.] 2018. xi, 266 pp. $99.00. (Paper: $28.00; E-book: $19.95).
Professor Clark challenges the American belief that the 1950s were a golden age of prosperity for autoworkers by dealing with the delicate interplay between larger national economic forces, auto industry and auto union policies, and the lives of those who laboured and lived in Detroit in the first two decades after World War II. Detroit autoworkers and their families experienced the same job instability and economic insecurity that had long shaped working-class life and labour. Attentive to gender and race, the author has based his findings on extensive and deep research in newspapers and on closely listening to and reading oral histories.
Duncan, Stephen R. The Rebel Café. Sex, Race, and Politics in Cold War America's Nightclub Underground. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore (MD) 2018. xiv, 317 pp. Ill. Maps. $54.95.
The art and antics of rebellious figures in 1950s American nightlife, from the Beat Generation to eccentric jazz musicians and comedians, have long fascinated fans and scholars alike. In this book, Professor Duncan focuses on the New York and San Francisco bars, nightclubs, and coffeehouses from which these cultural icons emerged. Throughout this period, the author argues, nightspots were crucial institutions of the American democratic public sphere. Amid the Red Scare's repressive politics, the urban underground of New York and San Francisco acted as both a fallout shelter for left-wingers and a laboratory for social experimentation, not merely offering entertainment, but also serving as a conduit to new socio-political awareness.
LaFleur, Greta. The Natural History of Sexuality in Early America. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore (MD) 2018. xii, 286 pp. $64.95.
The point of departure of this book is the centrality of natural history and specifically naturalist investigations into human variety in the history of sexuality in the eighteenth-century Atlantic World. Natural history accounts are examined alongside popular narratives, including e.g. barbary, captivity, execution, cross-dressing, and anti-vice narratives. Professor LaFleur traces the broadening knowledge of sexuality defined in terms of the dynamic relationship between humans and their natural, social, physical, and climatic milieu, demonstrating how environmental logic was generally used to explain sexual behaviour like sodomy, prostitution, and cross-dressing.
Schermerhorn, Calvin. Unrequited Toil. A History of United States Slavery. [Cambridge Essential Histories.] Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2018. ix, 258 pp. £71.99. (Paper: £17.99; E-book: $20.00).
This book synthesizes what we know about the institution of slavery. The essence of US slavery was forced labour, in farming, mining, construction, transport, and factory settings. By the 1830s, most enslaved people worked in the cotton fields. Professor Schermerhorn details how the institution of slavery became the most valuable economic interest in the nation, exploring the personal narratives of enslaved people against the broader processes of nation-building in the United States, growth and intensification of markets, the institutionalization of chattel slavery, and the growing relevance of race in the politics and society of the republic, based on themes such as politics, economics, labour, literature, rebellion, and social conditions.
Shackel, Paul A. Remembering Lattimer. Labor, Migration, and Race in Pennsylvania Anthracite Country. [The Working Class in American History.] University of Illinois Press, Urbana (IL) 2018. ix, 155 pp. Ill. Maps. $99.00. (Paper: $28.00; E-book: $19.95).
On 10 September 1897, a group of 400 striking coal miners of Polish, Slovak, and Lithuanian descent marched on Lattimer, Pennsylvania, where law enforcement officers fired into the protesters, killing nineteen miners. Dramatically retelling the incident, Professor Shackel traces how the violence and the acquittal of the deputies boosted membership of United Mine Workers. By blending archival and archaeological research with interviews, the author shows how the social, economic, and political circumstances surrounding historic Lattimer closely align the riven communities of today, as the descendants of the slain miners, now in positions of power, have become anti-union and anti-immigrant, as Dominicans and other Latinos change the community.
Tigar, Michael E. Mythologies of State and Monopoly Power. Monthly Review Press, New York 2018. 168 pp. $95.00. (Paper: $22.00; E-book: $17.00).
This book is a collection of essays on five groups of mythologies that help rationalize the present system of social relations. Some focus on how mythologies mask state repression of democratic rights in the fields of racism, criminal justice, free expression, worker's rights, and international human rights. Others deal with the ways in which ordinary private law categories of property, contract, and tort perform the same social function. Professor Tigar explores important issues through the lens of his personal and professional experience and through his analysis of some of the most important cases decided by the nation's courts.
Zecker, Robert M. “A Road to Peace and Freedom”. The International Workers Order and the Struggle for Economic Justice and Civil Rights, 1930–1954. Temple University Press, Philadelphia (PA) 2018. xiv, 384 pp. Ill. $99.50. (Paper: $34.95).
The International Workers Order (IWO) was an American consortium of ethnic mutual self-insurance societies that advocated unemployment insurance, social security, and vibrant industrial unions. This interracial leftist organization guaranteed the healthcare of its 180,000 white, black, Hispanic, and Arab working-class members. In this book, based on extensive primary sources, Professor Zecker describes the economic goals, commitment to racial justice and activism, of the group, from lobbying to end segregation and lynching in America to defeating fascism abroad, also illustrating the panoply of entertainment, sports, and educational activities designed to enrich the minds and bodies of members. Led by communists, however, the IWO was subject to government surveillance and was ultimately disbanded.
Microfoundations of the Arab Uprisings. Mapping Interactions between Regimes and Protesters. Ed. by Volpi, Frédéric and Jasper, James M.. [Protest and Social Movements.] Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam 2018. 197 pp. € 89.00.
This book brings together six contributors to present a strategic interactionist perspective on the study of contentious politics in the Middle East in response to the Arab uprisings. The contributions have in common an interest in the micro-level interactions between various strategic players, including not only mobilization of protestors during the uprisings, but also the responses of regimes. Short- to medium-term adaptations of the regimes and collective action by opponents in the post-uprising period are also considered, as are the subsequent trajectories of the protesters in the face of new forms of authoritarianism or democratization.
The Diffusion of Western Economics in East Asia. Ed. by Warner, Malcolm. [Routledge Studies in the Growth Economies of Asia, 137.] Routledge, London [etc.] 2017. xvi, 415 pp. £124.00. (Paper: £29.59; E-book: £33.29).
Contributors to this book examine the diffusion of economic ideas in East Asia, assessing the impact of external ideas on internal theory and practice, considering economists from Adam Smith onwards, including Marx, Keynes, Hayek, and contemporary economists, and covering the subject both historically and including present-day and probable future developments. The twenty-two contributions cover all major countries in East Asia and pay particular attention to specific economists who have had a strong impact in certain countries, i.e. Adam Smith in China and Keynes in Japan, and to important developments in economic theory in East Asia, exploring how far these have been driven by Western economic ideas.
London, Jonathan D. Welfare and Inequality in Marketizing East Asia. [Studies in the Political Economy of Public Policy.] London. Palgrave Macmillan, London 2018. xxviii, 435 pp. $58.00. (E-book: $44.99).
This book addresses the comparative political economy of East Asia in the context of late twentieth- and early twenty-first-century marketization, understood as an historic and dramatic acceleration in the global expansion of market relations that has gained force since the 1980s. Professor London traces how marketization has registered across the region's diverse social landscape and explores how it has shaped welfare and inequality across the region, approaching contemporary East Asia's political economies as dynamic, globally embedded social orders, analysing the development of social policy regimes, and the implementation and outcome of the social policies and placing these developments in broader regional and global political contexts.
Routledge Handbook of Asian Demography. Ed. By Zhao, Zhongwei and Hayes, Adrian C.. Routledge, London [etc.] 2018. xxx, 549 pp. Maps. £175.00. (E-book: £39.99).
This handbook provides a comprehensive study of population change all across Asia. Comprising twenty-eight chapters by more than forty international experts, this handbook examines demographic transitions on the continent, their considerable variations and their causes and consequences, relating them to a wide range of social, economic, political, and cultural processes. Topics covered include: population studies and sources of demographic data; historical demography; family planning and fertility decline; sex preferences; mortality changes; causes of death; HIV/AIDS; population distribution and migration; urbanization; marriage and family; human capital and labour force; population ageing; demographic dividends; political demography; population and environment; and Asia's demographic future.
Jinhua, Dai. After the Post-Cold War. The Future of Chinese History. Ed. and with an introd. by Rofel, Lisa. [Sinotheory.] Duke University Press, Durham (NC) [etc.] 2018. xi, 199 pp. Ill. $94.95. (Paper: $24.95).
This collection of seven essays focuses on questions of history, memory, and the historical revisionism of the new millennium. Drawing on Marxism, post-structuralism, psychoanalysis, and feminist theory, the film theorist Professor Dai examines one specific film in each essay to broaden discussion of present-day China within global capitalism, outlining the tension between China's embrace of the free market and a regime dependent on a socialist imprimatur. In all but two of the films she addresses, socialist subjectivity has been forgotten in favour of global depoliticized images. One of her central arguments is that the erasure of the past simultaneously forecloses imagining the future.
Shigang, Fan, Striking to Survive. Workers’ Resistance to Factory Relocations in China. Transl. [from Chinese] by Moss, Henry. Haymarket Books, Chicago (IL) 2018 (2014). 190 pp. $16.95.
This book documents a recent wave of factory closures in China's Pearl River Delta and struggles by workers to retain their jobs, pensions, and livelihoods. Through detailed case studies and in-depth interviews with workers, Mr Fan Shigang shows how Chinese migrant workers defend their labour rights and struggle to survive through large-scale political and economic restructuring. The author presents nine testimonies of workers and describes how workers took collective action against their employers, as the workers narrate their experiences during the two strikes, their initial enthusiasm, distrust of peers and representatives, and internal divisions and uncertainty about what to do next.
Ho, Denise Y. Curating Revolution. Politics on Display in Mao's China. [Cambridge Studies in the History of the People's Republic of China.] Cambridge University Press, Cambridge [etc.] 2018. xvi, 308 pp. Ill. £79.99. (Paper: £22.99).
Making an exhibition was both mass education and mass mobilization. In this history of the Mao period (1949–1976), Professor Ho examines the relationship between exhibitions and political movements. Museum workers collected revolutionary relics, neighbourhoods, schools, work units mounted and narrated local displays, and exhibits provided ritual space for ideological lessons and political campaigns. Examples range from the First Party Congress Site and the Shanghai Museum to the class education and Red Guard exhibits that accompanied the Socialist Education Movement and the Cultural Revolution. Using archival sources, ephemera, interviews, and other materials, the author traces the process by which exhibitions were developed, presented, and received.
Moll-Murata, Christine. State and Crafts in the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911). [Social Histories of Work in Asia.] Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam 2018. 402 pp. Ill. Maps. € 129.00.
In this study, Professor Moll-Murata examines crafts from early modern handicraft manufacturing in China to the beginnings of industrialization, from the seventeenth through the early twentieth centuries, including the transition from the Ming to the Qing dynasty, describing the initial expansion of the bureaucracies in charge of artisan production followed by downsizing and increasing reliance on the market by most branches of handicraft production. In different chapters, she considers the government-artisan relationship in specific sectors, such as shipbuilding, porcelain, and textiles, exploring the role of artisans in society and the activities of the relatively autonomous Chinese guilds as opposed to the state institutions.
Wang, Di. The Teahouse under Socialism. The Decline and Renewal of Public Life in Chengdu, 1950–2000. Cornell University Press, Ithaca (NY) [etc.] 2018. xi, 311 pp. Ill. $95.00. (Paper: $29.95).
Obtaining a full understanding of a city requires observing its most basic units of social life, according to Professor Wang. In this book on the teahouses of Chengdu (the capital of Sichuan Province), the author examines the social and economic activities of everyday Chinese. Relying on both archival material and fieldwork, he looks at the transformation of teahouses from private businesses to collective ownership and explores how state policy and the responses of proprietors changed the overall economic and social structure of the city, using this transformation to illuminate broader trends in China's urban public life from 1950 through the end of the Cultural Revolution and into the post-Mao reform era.
White III, Lynn T. Rural Roots of Reform, before China's Conservative Change. Routledge, Abingdon 2018. xxix, 380 pp. $169.95. (Paper: $63.95; E-book: $26.98).
China's economic and military rise dominates discussions about the world's most populous country. The government is credited with success, but data presented here on production at rural factories prove that growth accelerated during the early 1970s, initiated mostly by officials on rural production teams and brigades, transforming many peasants into workers in the 1970s and 80s. Country factories competed with state industries for materials and markets. By the 1980s, shortages led to inflation, government deficits, unofficial credit, unenforceable planning, and illegal migration and then to international exports – and to severe political tensions, causing reactive changes after 1990 and lasting into the era of Xi Jinping. See also Ju Li's review in this volume, pp. 325–327.
Khan, Ayesha. The Women's Movement in Pakistan. Activism, Islam and Democracy. I.B. Tauris, London [etc.] 2018. xvii, 398 pp. Ill. £85.00.
During the rule of Zia ul-Haq, Islamization policies and control over women became the key markers of religious adherence by the state. A new resistance emerged, led by urban, educated women who rejected discriminatory laws and policies and demanded a return to democratic dispensation with equal rights for all. In this history of the modern women's movement in Pakistan, based on archives from the Women's Action Forum, court records, interviews, and analysis of newspapers and magazines, Dr Khan argues that the demand for a secular state and resistance to Islamization should not be seen as a crucial contribution to the evolution of the Pakistani state or as Pakistani women sympathizing with a Western agenda.
Disliking Others. Loathing, Hostility, and Distrust in Premodern Ottoman Lands. Ed. by Karateke, Hakan T., Çipa, H. Erdem, Anetshofer, Helga. [Ottoman and Turkish Studies.] Academic Studies Press, Boston 2018. xv, 339 pp. Ill. $109.00.
The economic and social stability of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries made the Ottoman lands a relatively safe and secure environment for trade, arts and crafts, peaceful coexistence, and settlement. This volume presents a critical evaluation of this so-called Pax Ottomanica, exploring xenophobia (disliking foreigners) and alterophobia (disliking members of alternative groups within the same society) in the Ottoman lands. The thirteen articles strive to contextualize the many issues that sound like ethnic slurs, racial stereotyping, religious discrimination, misogyny, and elitism. The goal of the volume is to investigate the axes of tension, blemishes, and fractures in the everyday practice of coexistence in a dynamic, multi-religious, multi-confessional, and multi-ethnic empire.
De Bock, Jozefien. Parallel Lives Revisited. Mediterranean Guest Workers and Their Families at Work and in the Neighbourhood, 1960–1980. Berghahn, New York [etc.] 2018. xiii, 206 pp. Ill. Maps. $120.00; £85.00.
Combining quantitative analysis, archival research, and over one hundred oral history interviews, Dr De Bock explores the lives of immigrants arriving from six Mediterranean countries in the Belgian city of Ghent from 1960 to 1980, including their experiences on the labour market, the different economic sectors where they worked, the types of jobs they held and social relations between immigrant workers and their colleagues and employers. The author also analyses the position of immigrants on the local housing market and their spatial dispersion across the city, while tracing the course of social relations in the neighbourhoods.
De Munck, Bert. Guilds, Labour and the Urban Body Politic. Fabricating Community in the Southern Netherlands, 1300–1800. [Routledge Research in Early Modern History.] Routledge, New York [etc.] 2018. xiv, 312 pp. Ill. £120.00. (E-book: £39.99).
In the Southern Netherlands, powerful occupational guilds were governed by manufacturing masters. Guild-based artisans gained acceptance as genuine political actors, their political identity, and agency deriving from their skills and trustworthiness, although corporative spirit and power diminished over time. Professor De Munck shows that the disintegrated guild structure enabled European modernity and the modern economy to develop. In this book, the author sheds new light on the emergence of civil society, citizenship, and communal resource management and attempts to understand the meaning and role of the guilds through their entanglements with both the private and the political sphere.
Eire – Ireland
Watt, Timothy D. Popular Protest and Policing in Ascendancy Ireland, 1691–1761. [Irish Historical Monograph Series.] Boydell, Woodbridge 2018. xiv, 260 pp. £65.
This book explores the connexion between collective action, popular politics, and policing in Ireland in the late seventeenth and the eighteenth centuries. Dr Watt investigates the impact that authorities and law enforcers had on society, when they carried out policing duties, and the actions undertaken by the lower social orders to protect their freedoms, livelihoods, and customs. The author shows how increasing taxes, used mainly to cover the cost of the British armed powers, resulted in proliferation of violent protests in most parts of Ireland and examines the conduct of rioters and members of the forces of order, revealing the moral compasses used during violent confrontations on both sides.
Bowd, Gavin. The Last Communard. Adrien Lejeune, the Unexpected Life of a Revolutionary. Verso, London [etc.] 2016. 182 pp. Ill. £14.99; € 24.65.
In 1871, Adrien Lejeune fought on the barricades of the Paris Commune. Imprisoned for treason when the Commune fell, he narrowly avoided execution for his role in the struggle for a new future. In later life, he immigrated to Soviet Russia, finding fame as a revolutionary icon. Having led a long and extraordinary life, he died in Siberia in 1942. Vaunted as a hero in France, his ashes came to rest in the Communards’ plot of the Père Lachaise cemetery. Dr Bowd's biography is based on newspapers and archival material of the Comintern and the French Communist Party.
Meriggi, Maria Grazia. Entre fraternité et xénophobie. Les mondes ouvriers parisiens dans l'entre-deux-guerres et les problèmes de la guerre et de la paix. [Le corps social.] Préface de Michel Dreyfus. Editions Arbre bleu, Nancy 2018. 169 pp. € 22.00.
The interwar period was marked by intense worker solidarity, culminating in the coalition Le Front Populaire, while coinciding with a nationalist and xenophobic surge against immigrant workers, in the context of economic crisis. In this book, Professor Meriggi examines how this dual reality was reflected in the workplace, based on her analysis of sources such as union archives and police records on strikes in the Paris region and the North during the 1920s and 30s. The main theme addressed is equal treatment of French and foreign workers by some trade unions, the actions of the “ethnic” sections of the Immigrant Workforce, and the xenophobic and anti-Semitic propaganda of the nationalist leagues.
Reid, Donald. Opening the Gates. The Lip Affair, 1968–1981. Verso, London [etc.] 2018. xvi, 492 pp. Ill. £32.00.
The long 1968, from May 1968 until the election of Mitterrand in 1981, saw the last widespread expression of confidence in the creativity and moral universe of workers engaged in labour conflicts, according to Professor Reid. In 1973, workers at the Lip watch firm in Besançon occupied their factory to prevent massive layoffs. They continued working and paid their own salaries. Educated by ‘68, the workers formed committees to manage every aspect of what became a national struggle. Female employees developed a working-class feminism, combating workplace harassment and male control of the union. Drawing extensively on unpublished materials, the author reconstructs the vision and practice of those involved. See also Xavier Vigna's review in volume 64:1, pp. 159–161.
“Deutsche Arbeit”. Kritische Perspektiven auf ein ideologisches Selbstbild. Hrsg. von Felix Axster und Nikolas Lelle. [Studien zu Ressentiments in Geschichte und Gegenwart, Bd 2.] Wallstein, Göttingen 2018. 287 pp. Ill. € 30.80.
The topos Deutsche Arbeit emerged in the mid-nineteenth century and bonded notions of work ethic and national character. During the Nazi regime, the concept became particularly effective within the concept of the Volksgemeinschaft. In the twelve contributions, the authors examine the origins of this ideological self-image, investigating how “work” was inserted in a nationalist ideology and how the concept of the nation was, in turn, circumscribed by the concept of work, linking this with the politics of exclusion and culminating in anti-Semitism and the extermination policy of the Third Reich and discussing how the radicalization of the term by National Socialism has persisted since the end of the war until today.
A History Shared and Divided. East and West Germany since the 1970s. Ed. by Bösch, Frank. Transl. [from German] by Walcoff Neuheiser, Jennifer. Berghahn, New York [etc.] 2018 (Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2015). xii, 608 pp. Ill. £135.00, $190.00. (E-book: $44.95).
The historical trajectories of East and West Germany were interrelated in complex ways. This collection of eleven essays is a comparative study of changing social structures in East and West Germany, such as work, the economy, welfare, education, lifestyle, and politics, as well as the environment, sports, and media. In addition to considering the separate histories or differences between the states, the authors seeks similarities and interactions between East and West, revolving around an analysis of how East and West Germany have changed since the 1970s, also examining whether there was a prevalence of commonalities, or whether system-based differences dominated the trajectories of each state.
Jarausch, Konrad H. Broken Lives. How Ordinary Germans Experienced the 20th Century. Princeton University Press, Princeton (NJ) 2018. xiii, 446 pp. Ill. $35.00; £27.00. (Paper: $22.95; £17.99).
Drawing on six dozen memoirs by the age cohort of Germans born in the 1920s, Professor Jarausch chronicles the stories of people who lived through the Third Reich, World War II, and the Cold War partition and participated in Germany's post-war recovery, reunification, and rehabilitation. Bringing together the voices of men and women, perpetrators and victims, the author reveals the intimate human details of historical events and offers new insights, for example about why so many Germans supported Hitler. He argues that by focusing on its own suffering, this generation ultimately achieved a more critical understanding of national identity, which helped transform Germany from a military aggressor into a pillar of European democracy.
Karl Marx 1818–1883. Leben. Werk. Zeit. Trier 05.05.–21.10.2018. Groβe Landesausstellung Rheinisches Landesmuseum Trier Stadtmuseum Simeonstift Trier. Hrsg. von Beatrix Bouvier, Rainer Auts. Theiss, Darmstadt 2018. 384 pp. Ill. € 39.95.
In recognition of the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx's birth, a large exhibition divided between two locations in Trier traces his life, work, and writings. The nineteenth century, with its economic and social upheavals, shaped the philosopher and economist. Aspirations for freedom and democracy, industrialization, and urbanization are hallmarks of this turbulent era. This catalogue offers insights into this period, Marx's intellectual career and his most important writings and considers their relevance to the present day, while also showing the person Karl Marx with his family, his companions, and the different places he stayed in his eventful life.
Kiel und die Revolution von 1918. Das Tagebuch eines Werftingenieurs, verfasst in den Jahren 1917–1919. Edition und Textanalyse. Kuhl, Klaus [Kieler Werkstücke. Reihe A: Beiträge zur Schleswig-Holsteinischen und Skandinavischen Geschichte, Bd. 51.] Peter Lang, Bern 2018. Ill. € 71.90; £54.00.
This diary of the Kiel shipyard engineer Andersen offers an impression of the behaviour of shipyard employees during the years 1917–1919. Born in a relatively wealthy rural family, Nikolaus Andersen had a broad range of interests, including politics. In his analysis of the diary, Dr Kuhl finds indications that large parts of the white-collar employees supported the revolutionary upheavals in Kiel, from examining which events were recorded there, how they affected him, and how discussion in his environment was presented, as well as the question as to what extent the statements by the diarist may be deemed representative of his environment.
Pelz, William A. A People's History of the German Revolution. [People's History.] Pluto Press, London 2018. xxii, 180 pp. £75. (Paper, E-book: £16.99).
In October 1918, as a consequence of the military defeat of Germany, triggered by a naval mutiny, the anger of the masses spread revolution throughout the country. Workers joined forces with sailors and soldiers in an enormous mass movement against the monarchical system. The proclamation of the Weimar Republic ended the revolution in 1919. Professor Pelz explores the revolution from the bottom up, focusing on the active role of women, rank-and-file activists and ordinary workers in its course, making the compelling case that, for a brief period, the actions of the common people shaped a truly revolutionary society.
Akkerman, Nadine. Invisible Agents. Women and Espionage in Seventeenth-Century Britain. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2018. xviii, 264 pp. Ill. £20.00.
The struggle of She-Intelligencers to construct credibility in their own time is mirrored in their invisibility in the archives. Taking mid-seventeenth-century Britain as a case study, Dr Akkerman traces the women who carried out (counter) espionage around the English Civil War. The first two chapters introduce the main themes of how women ensured their own invisibility. Chapters three to five explore the history of two Royalist secret organizations (the Sealed Knot and the Great Trust), showing women's involvement. The last two chapters detail the lives of Anne Lady Hackett and Aphra Behn and their psychological struggle with the trade of espionage, which they managed to shape to their advantage.
Bell, Henry. Maclean, John. Hero of Red Clydeside. [Revolutionary Lives.] Pluto Press, London 2018. xi, 242 pp. £75.00. (Paper, E-book: £14.99).
In this biography of John Maclean (1879–1923), Scotland's most famous revolutionary, is situated in the political, social, and economic context of his time, whilst examining the legacy of his struggle a hundred years on. Maclean was notable for his opposition to World War I, which led him to be arrested and to lose his teaching post. Although he had been appointed Bolshevik representative in Scotland, he was not in harmony with the Communist Party of Great Britain. This book examines his work as an organizer and educator and his imprisonment and hunger strike and traces how he became the early hero of radical Scottish Independence.
Catterall, Peter. Labour and the Free Churches, 1918–1939. Radicalism, Righteousness, and Religion. Bloomsbury, London [etc.] 2016. xiii, 322 pp. £90.00. (Paper: £28.99).
This study explores how the Free Churches, traditionally allied to the Liberal Party, reacted to the growing importance of the Labour Party. In the first of four prisms, the author examines the response by the leadership of the Free Churches to the rise of the new party, in the second how social changes at the local level affected chapel society and the propensity of adherents to engage politically, in the third the level of personnel, and in the final prism ideals and ideas. He also addresses how both the Free Churches and the Labour movement handled the concept of class and considers the shift in nonconformist attitudes towards the State. See also Peter Acker's review essay in volume 64:1, pp. 129–142.
Cookson, Gillian. The Age of Machinery. Engineering the Industrial Revolution, 1770–1850. [People, Markets, Goods. Economies and Societies in History, Vol. 12.] The Boydell Press, Woodbridge [etc.] 2018. x, 324 pp. Ill. Maps. £19.99.
In this book, Dr Cookson explores the engineers who built the first generations of modern textile machines, between 1770 and 1850, in northern England, and the industry they brought about, probing their origins and skills, the sources of their inspiration and impetus, and how a high-tech, factory-centred, world-leading market in textile machinery was developed virtually from scratch. The circumstances suggest that the potential to accelerate economic growth could be found within social assets and craft skills. The details of this research, including family relationships, are set out in appendices, offering lists of textile engineers, Leeds engineering businesses before 1830 and estimates of textile machinery at work in the United Kingdom (1835–1856).
Deringer, William. Calculated Values. Finance, Politics, and the Quantitative Age. Harvard University Press, Cambridge (MA) 2018. xxii, 413 pp. Ill. $34.46. (E-book: $30.92).
In the early twenty-first century, confidence in numbers grew, as manifested by the rising prestige of quantitative research methods. Complex calculations were often regarded with suspicion until the last decades of the seventeenth century and first decades of the eighteenth century. Professor Deringer argues that though this coincided with advances in natural science and financial capitalism, the new quantitative enthusiasm was a product of partisan politics, where parliamentary debates about taxes, trade, and national debt were increasingly conducted through calculations. According to the author, the authority of numbers resulted not from efforts to find objective truths but from the turmoil of politics.
John Lilburne and the Levellers. Reappraising the Roots of English Radicalism 400 Years On. Ed. by Rees, John. [Routledge Studies in Radical History and Politics.] Routledge, London 2018. x, 157 pp. Ill. £94.99. (Paper, E-book: £36.99).
John Lilburne (1615–1657) was one of the leading figures in the Levellers, the highly influential radical sect that called for law reform, religious tolerance, extended suffrage, and a new form of government. The eight essays in this book assess the legacy of Lilburne and the Levellers 400 years after his birth. In roughly chronological order, according to the events in Lilburne's life, the authors examine his role as an inspirational leader, his writings that exposed the hypocrisy, and corruption of those in power, his contribution to political ideas, his personal and political relations with his wife Elizabeth, his exile in the Netherlands, his late decision to become a Quaker, and his reputation after his death. See also Henk Looijesteijn's review in this volume, pp. 327–329.
Johnson, Neil. The Labour Church. The Movement and Its Messages. [Routledge Studies in Radical History and Politics.] Routledge, New York, 2018. x, 233 pp. £120.00. (E-book: £39.99).
Theological Socialism prophesized a new utopian era explained in Christian religious terms. For members of the Labour Church, it was an inclusive message about God working through the Labour movement. Dr Johnson examines the principles underlying the Labour Church, showing the importance of religious belief to the Left in thought and practice in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century British Socialism. The principles are placed within a wider context, highlighting the social and ideological setting of the Labour Church, the events and concepts that shaped the founder's thinking and the motivations and aspirations of the people who aligned with the movement. See also Peter Acker's review essay in volume 64:1, pp. 129–142.
Sloane, Nan. The Women in the Room. Labour's Forgotten History. Forew. by Rt Hon Harriet Harman MP. I.B. Tauris, London [etc.] 2018. xix, 252 pp. Ill. £17.99. (E-book: £17.09).
Throughout Labour's history, even in its earliest years, women were present, but they were not always recorded or remembered. They came from many different backgrounds and supported the causes they believed in, as organizers, campaigners, negotiators, polemicists, public speakers, and leaders. Sloane unearths the stories of women who, long before the campaign for women's suffrage, fought for workers’ rights and played a key role in the birth of the Labour Party. The book opens with the establishment of the Trade Unions Congress in 1868 and takes the story up to the 1918 general election, in which the first women voted.
Dufeu, Val. Fish Trade in Medieval North Atlantic Societies. An Interdisciplinary Approach to Human Ecodynamics. [The Early Medieval North Atlantic.] Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam 2018. 254 pp. Ill. Maps. € 99.00, (E-book: € 98.99).
In this book, Dr Dufeu reconstructs settlement patterns of fishing communities in Viking Age Iceland and the Faeroes. The author integrates written sources, geoarchaeological data, and zooarchaeological data to examine how fishing propelled political change in the North Atlantic. The aims of the study are to establish the key features of Iceland's economic patterns and produce models for socio-economic developments based mainly on the development of a specialized fish trade within a defined historical framework. By researching the interaction between places of production, distribution, and consumption of fish the author identifies networks of exchange and locates cultural and economic spaces.
Balsamini, Luigi. Gli arditi del popolo. Dalla guerra alla difesa proletaria contro il fascismo (1917–1922). Seconda edizione. [Atti e memori del popolo.] Galzerano, Casavelino Scalo 2018. 446 pp. Ill. € 15.00.
The present volume, revised, rewritten, and redesigned since the first edition of 2002, is a detailed reconstruction of the Arditi del popolo movement, which consisted of former soldiers from World War I. The movement was established in 1921, providing leftist organizations with armed defence against fascist attacks. Nowadays, with the return of the extreme right to the political arena, the discourse on fascism needs to be renewed and ways to fight it updated. Reconstruction of the history of the Arditi del popolo helps preserve the memory of the generation that has combatted fascism with every necessary means.
Pernicone, Nunzio and Ottanelli, Fraser M.. Assassins against the Old Order. Italian Anarchist Violence in Fin de Siècle Europe. University of Illinois Press, Urbana (IL) [etc.] 2018. ix, 219 pp. $99.00. (Paper: $30.00; E-book: $19.95).
Although political violence is the focus of this study, assassinations were not the only defining feature of the Italian anarchist movement. The authors study the historical, economic, social, cultural and political conditions, the social conflicts and left-wing politics, along with the experiences in Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland, and the United States that led to Italian anarchist violence at the end of the nineteenth century, examining how these assassinations connect with other forms, ideologies, and insurrections of anarchist violence in Italy and other countries. Treating each assassination within its historical context, the authors provide bibliographical portraits and analyses of the main Italian perpetrators.
Piatkowski, Marcin. Europe's Growth Champion. Insights from the Economic Rise of Poland. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2018. xxv, 364 pp. Ill. Maps. £65.00. (Paper: £25.00).
Over the last twenty-five years, Poland has transitioned from a poor, peripheral country to the ranks of the world's high-income countries. This book is about the lessons learned from Poland's experience and defines a model that Poland and other Eastern European countries need to adopt in order to continue to grow. Dr Piatkowski emphasizes the importance of fundamental sources of growth in economic development: institutions; culture; ideas; and leaders. He argues that shifting from an extractive society to an inclusive society was the key to Poland's success, while acknowledging the future challenges that Poland faces, and that moving to the core of the European economy will require further reforms and changes.
Russia – Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
Cameron, Sarah. The Hungry Steppe. Famine, Violence, and the Making of Soviet Kazakhstan. Cornell University Press, Ithaca (NY) 2018. xi, 277 pp. Ill. Maps. $49.95.
During the Kazakh famine of 1930–1933, more than 1.5 million people perished, a quarter of Kazakhstan's population. Drawing upon state and Communist party documents, as well as newspapers and oral history, Professor Cameron reveals this story and its devastating consequences for Kazakh society. Moscow sought to create a stable territory with clearly defined boundaries as an integral part of the Soviet economic system that served as a meatpacking centre. But the radical programme of state-led transformation instigated the total collapse of the republic's livestock economy. The famine experience scarred the republic for the remainder of the Soviet era and shaped its transformation into an independent nation in 1991.
Engelstein, Laura. Russia in Flames. War, Revolution, Civil War 1914–1921. Oxford University Press, New York [etc.] 2018. xxvii, 823 pp. Ill. Maps. £25.00.
After the implosion of the Romanov dynasty, Russia was in crisis, as one interim government replaced another. In this book, Professor Engelstein examines the seven years of chaos surrounding 1917: the war, the revolutionary upheaval, and the civil strife it provoked. The struggle for power engaged not only civil society and party leaders but also the population of the empire. Revolution and civil war revealed democratic hopes about social justice and equality, but the October Revolution destroyed any democratic experiment. The Bolsheviks managed to harness the social breakdown caused by the war and to institutionalize violence for creating a new society and a new form of power.
Kalinovsky, Artemy M. Laboratory of Socialist Development. Cold War Politics and Decolonization in Soviet Tajikistan. Cornell University Press, Ithaca (NY) [etc.] 2018. xiii, 316 pp. Ill. Maps. $42.95.
The story of Tajikistan presented here illuminates the history of Soviet development in the twentieth century. Dr Kalinovsky connects high politics and intellectual debates with the life histories and experiences of peasants, workers, scholars, and engineers and illustrates the post-war Soviet Union, the relationship between Moscow and its periphery and the interaction between Cold War politics and domestic development. He focuses on the everyday experiences of Soviet development, the construction and local workers of the Nurek Dam, struggles over the welfare state and urbanization, and campaigns to mechanize agriculture, electrify the Tajik countryside and deliver the benefits of the welfare state while developing the cotton economy.
Smolkin, Victoria. A Sacred Space is Never Empty. A History of Soviet Atheism. Princeton University Press, Princeton (NJ) 2018. xvi, 339 pp. Ill. $45.00; £35.00. (Paper: $32.95).
Soviet power used a variety of tools to turn its vision of a communist world without religion into reality. Yet, the Soviet Communist Party never succeeded in creating an atheist society. This book presents the history of Soviet atheism from 1917 to the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991. Drawing on archival material and in-depth interviews, Professor Smolkin argues that religion represented an obstacle to the monopoly of Soviet communism on political, ideological, and spiritual authority. In bringing about a world without religion, simply exorcising religion was not enough; atheism had been reimagined as an alternative cosmology with its own set of beliefs, practices, and spiritual commitments.
14D, historia y memoria de la huelga general. El día que se paralizó España. Babiano, José y Tébar, Javier (coords.), prólogo de Unai Sordo. Catarata, Madrid 2018. 126 pp. € 14.00. (E-book: € 9.99).
In 1988, in the general strike of 14 December, instigated by a youth employment plan offering companies high subsidies but mandating low-wage, temporary contracts for young people without cause and without collective rights drew participation by ninety-five per cent of employees in Spain. This unprecedented success was a blow to the neoliberal course of the González government policy. Considering the strike of 14D from different perspectives, four contributions elaborate on the historical events and their context, while in the second part three essays dedicated to the memory of the strike convey a vision of events lived and remembered with emotion.
Cambio institucional y fiscalidad. Mundo Hispánico, 1760–1850. Ed. por Bertrand, Michael y Moutoukias, Zacarías. [Collection de la Casa de Velázquez, Vol. 164.] Casa de Velázquez, Madrid 2018. xi, 432 pp. € 35.00. (E-book: € 19.99).
This volume addresses the processes of institutional change in Spain and Latin America from the Seven Years War to the nineteenth century. The processes are analysed through the prism of the history of finance by examining fiscal issues in broader economic, social and cultural transformations. The eighteen contributions are presented in three parts. Part one describes the reform of taxation promoted by the monarchy in the context of competition between empires and new liberal thinking. In Part two, local actors and their influence on the political order and financial institutions are considered, and in Part three the contributors analyse the role of land, property and institutions, and the political dynamics linked to financing war through tax revenues.
Leval, Gaston. Collectives in the Spanish Revolution. Transl. from the French by Richards, Vernon. PM Press, Oakland (CA) 2018 . xxvii, 380 pp. Ill. $27.95.
Revolutionary Spain came about with an explosion of social change. Combining research and analysis with lucid reporting, the author of this book was not only a participant in the Revolution and a dedicated anarcho-syndicalist, but also an eyewitness to the many industrial and agrarian collectives. Surveying agrarian collectives in Aragón, Levante and Castile. Leval, he shows the variety of urban examples of self-organization, from factories and workshops to medicine, social services, Barcelona's tramway system and beyond. In the introduction and preface, he offers a précis of Leval's life and methods, placing this study in the context of more recent writing on Spanish collectives.
Suter, Mischa. Rechtstrieb. Schulden und Vollstreckung im liberalen Kapitalismus 1800–1900. Konstanz University Press, Konstanz 2016. 328 pp. Maps. € 32.90; Sfr. 39.90.
This study proposes new perspectives on the history of capitalism, as well as on the historical epistemology of economic activity, by examining debt collection practices in the economy of nineteenth-century liberalism. Dr Suter describes the legal procedures, paperwork routines, and social relations that shaped debt as profoundly relational in nineteenth-century Switzerland, epitomizing economic and political liberalism. The social relation of debt is in turn depicted as a central force field in nineteenth-century society. Based in part on the theoretical and historical work of Marx, the book places special emphasis on precarious economies.