Published this week

January 31, 2008


• Dynasties: Fortune and Misfortune in the World's Great Family Businesses

By David Landes, professor emeritus of history and economics, Harvard University

Penguin, £9.99. ISBN 9780140281880

Landes's overview of famous dynasties and the people behind them aims to find out what made these successful businesspeople tick and to assess their legacy.


• Rationality in Economics: Constructivist and Ecological Forms

By Vernon L. Smith, professor of economics and law, Chapman University

Cambridge University Press, £40.00. ISBN 9780521871358

This expansion to a fuller form of Smith's Nobel Lecture on rationality in economics embraces behavioural economics and economic theory. It also links to the philosophies of other eminent figures in the discipline.


• The Return of Ulysses: A Cultural History of Homer's Odyssey

By Edith Hall, professor of Classics and drama, Royal Holloway, University of London

I. B. Tauris, £20.00. ISBN 9781845115753

Odysseus' journey back to Ithaca has proved a timeless tale, influencing operas, novels and films. Hall explores possible reasons behind the enduring fascination with Homer's Odyssey.

• The Collected Letters of Rosina Bulwer Lytton

Edited by Marie Mulvey Roberts, lecturer in English, University of the West of England

Pickering and Chatto, £295.00. ISBN 9781851968039

Although best known as the "mad wife" of the eminent Victorian author Edward Bulwer Lytton, Rosina Bulwer Lytton was an adroit and successful writer who used her pen to launch an attack on the estranged and unfaithful husband who had had her incarcerated, as shown in this collection of more than 800 letters.


• Storm over Asia

By Amy Sargeant, reader in film, University of Warwick

I. B. Tauris, £12.99. ISBN 9781845113742

Sargeant's study of Vsevolod Pudovkin's renowned silent film of 1928, part of the publisher's KINOfiles Film Companion series, describes the circumstances in which it was produced and distributed. She also discusses the film's warm reception in Russia, Germany and France and its banning in the UK.


• Museum: The Macleays, their Collections and the Search for Order

By Robyn Stacey, senior lecturer in the School of Communication Arts, University of Western Sydney

Cambridge University Press, £45.00 ISBN 9780521874533

Author and photographer Stacey captures images from the collections of Australia's pre-eminent 19th-century natural history collector, Alexander Macleay, and his family, and includes stories and scientific notes with each picture.


• Ibn Battuta

By L. P. Harvey, senior associate member, Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies

I. B. Tauris, £10.99. ISBN 9781845113940

Marco Polo's near contemporary Ibn Battuta was attacked by pirates, shipwrecked, marooned and kidnapped when traversing the globe in search of different Islamic cultures. Harvey's book, which is part of the publisher's Makers of Islamic Civilization series, is a review of Ibn Battuta's journeys and the themes explored in his journals.

• The Military Leadership of Matilda of Canossa, 1046-1115

By David Hay, assistant professor of history, University of Lethbridge

Manchester University Press, £60.00. ISBN 9780719073588

This is the first book to profile the military career of one of the most powerful women of the Middle Ages, drawing on sources such as diplomas, correspondence and the epic Latin poem she commissioned as her biography.

• Fifteenth-Century Studies Vol. 33

Edited by Edelgard E. DuBruck, professor emeritus of French and humanities, Marygrove College, and Barbara I. Gusick, professor emeritus of English, Troy State University

Camden House, £75.00. ISBN 9781571133779

This volume from a series first published in 1977 offers essays from experts on diverse aspects of the 15th century, including liberal and fine arts, historiography, medicine and religion.

• Anglo-Saxon England

By Malcolm Godden, Rawlinson and Bosworth professor of Anglo-Saxon, University of Oxford, and Simon Keynes, Elrington and Bosworth professor of Anglo-Saxon, University of Cambridge

Cambridge University Press, £95.00 ISBN 9780521883429

This 35th volume in the Anglo-Saxon England Series includes topics ranging from whelk dyes and Anglo-Saxon poetry to the epistemological metaphors of Alfred.


•The Law Applied: Contextualizing the Islamic Shari'a

By Peri Bearman, associate director of the Islamic Legal Studies Programme, Harvard Law School; Bernard Weiss, professor of languages and literature, University of Utah; and Wolfhart Heinrichs, James Richard Jewett professor of Arabic in the department of Near Eastern languages and civilisations, Harvard University

I. B. Tauris, £47.50. ISBN 9781845117368

This book reflects and contributes to the change that has taken place in Islamic legal studies. Traditionally, scholars have tended to focus on Sharia as a body of rules; in contrast, this volume examines how the law has been applied to concrete situations.


• Youth, Identity and Digital Media

Edited by David Buckingham, professor of education, Institute of Education, University of London, and founder and director of the Centre for the Study of Children, Youth and Media

MIT Press, £20.95 and £10.95. ISBN 9780262026352 and 524834

The authors of these essays explore how young people use digital media to share ideas and creativity and to participate in networks that are small and large, local and global, intimate and anonymous.


• Degrees of Excellence: A Fatimid Treatise on Leadership

By Ahmad B. Ibrahim al-Naysaburi, edited and translated by Arzina R. Lalani, research associate, Institute of Ismaili Studies in London

I. B. Tauris, £29.50. ISBN 9781845111458

A new translation of medieval scholar Ahmad B. Ibrahim al-Naysaburi's seminal work looks at how he used rational tools rather than the Koran or Hadith to explain and expound his theology.

• The Philosophy of History: An Introduction

By Mark Day, visiting lecturer in philosophy, Nottingham Trent University

Continuum, £60.00 and £19.99. ISBN 9780826488473 and 8480

Day's work is intended as a study guide. Its structure and content closely reflect the undergraduate teaching of the philosophy of history, with recommendations for further reading.

• The Story of God

By Robert Winston, emeritus professor of fertility studies, Imperial College London

Bantam Press, £8.99. ISBN 9780553817430

Winston examines the relationship between science and religion across time, beginning with the primitive worship of our early ancestors and concluding with a look at faith in contemporary society.


• Mathematics and Democracy: Designing Better Voting and Fair-Division Procedures

By Steven J. Brams, professor of politics, New York University

Princeton University Press, £38.95 and £16.95. ISBN 9780691133201 and 3218

Showing how social-choice theory and game theory could make political and social institutions more democratic, Brams uses mathematical analysis to develop new procedures that could enable voters to better express their preferences.


• Domesticating the World: African Consumerism and the Genealogies of Globalization

By Jeremy Prestholdt, assistant professor of history, University of California, San Diego

University of California Press, £14.95. ISBN 9780520254237

Globalisation is considered a recent phenomenon, but Prestholdt's look at global interconnectivity in the 19th century in East Africa shows that the phenomenon was developing long before it came to the fore in the West.


•?The Corinna of England, and a Heroine in the Shade: A Modern Romance

By E. M. Foster, edited by Silvia Bordoni, researcher at the Centre for Byron and Romanticism, University of Nottingham

Pickering and Chatto, £45.00

ISBN 9781851969241

Foster’s book was one of the earliest British responses to the publication of Germaine de Staël’s allegorical romance Corinne, or Italy. Bordoni’s edition provides an understanding of the British reaction to Corinne in cultural, social and gender contexts.


•?The Sasanian Era: Part 3

By Vesta Sarkhosh Curtis, curator of Islamic and Iranian coins at the British Museum, and Sarah Stewart, deputy director of the London Middle East Institute, School of Oriental and African Studies

I. B. Tauris, £39.50

ISBN 9781845116903

This volume, part of the publisher’s Idea of Iran series, is a comprehensive treatment of the Sasanian era from AD224 until 642, including discussion of the dynasty’s Zoroastrian faith, architecture and the arts.

•?Tribes and Brigands in the Balkans: A History of Northern Albania

By T. J. Winnifrith, former lecturer, University of Warwick

I. B. Tauris, £24.50

ISBN 9781845116101

Winnifrith, who has travelled Albania extensively, traces the history of this ruggedly beautiful region, which is frequently disturbed by invaders and internal strife yet retains a distinct national identity and character.

•?The Myth of the Eastern Front: The Nazi-Soviet War in American Popular Culture

By Ronald Smelser, professor of history, University of Utah, and Edward J. Davies, associate professor of history, University of Utah

Cambridge University Press, £40.00

ISBN 9780521833653

Smelser and Davies aim to discover how, in the US of the 1950s, a more positive view of German military conduct evolved, accompanied by a newly dismissive view of the Russian military.

•?Abu Hanifa

By Muhammad Akram, research fellow, Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies

I. B. Tauris, £10.99

ISBN 9781845115296

Although the subject’s Hanafi law is still followed today by some, the man behind it is rarely profiled. In this book, which is part of the publisher’s Makers of Islamic Civilization series, Akram reveals Abu Hanifa as an esteemed man who was pious and disciplined.

•?Your Children Will Be Next: Bombing and Propaganda in the Spanish Civil War

By Robert Stradling, lecturer, the Leirsinn Centre for Gaelic Affairs, the Gaelic College, University of the Highlands and Islands

University of Wales Press, £60.00 and £18.99

ISBN 9780708320952 and 0945

Stradling analyses the contributions of various propaganda figures in the Spanish Civil War, using as a constant backdrop the infamous poster declaring “If You Tolerate This, Your Children Will Be Next”.

•?Bankruptcy of Empire: Mexican Silver and the Wars between Spain, Britain and France, 1760–1810

By Carlos Marichal, professor of Latin American economic history, El Colegio de México

Cambridge University Press, £45.00

ISBN 9780521879644

Marichal incorporates analysis of the Spanish Empire into the debates on the end of the ancient regime and emphasises that it was the third most important European state in terms of income and naval power, and first in size of empire, in the period this book examines.


•?In Defence of Food: The Myth

of Nutrition and the Pleasures of Eating

By Michael Pollan, Knight professor of journalism, University of California, Berkeley

Allen Lane, £16.99

ISBN 9781846140969

Pollan argues that food industry marketers, nutritional scientists and journalists have distorted the balanced dietary lessons passed down through the ages and stopped the public making thoughtful food choices.


•?Civic Life Online: Learning How Digital Media Can Engage Youth

Edited by Lance Bennett, Ruddick C. Lawrence professor of communication and professor of political science. University of Washington

MIT Press, £20.95 and £10.95

ISBN 9780262026345 and 5248

The contributors to this book discuss not only how online networks can inspire conventional political participation, but also how creative uses of digital technologies are expanding the boundaries of politics and public issues.

•?Learning Race and Ethnicity: Youth and Digital Media

Edited by Anna Everett, professor of film studies, University of California, Santa Barbara

MIT Press, £20.95 and £10.95

ISBN 9780262050913 and 550673

This book explores the intersection of race and ethnicity with post-9/11 politics, online hate-speech practices, and digital youth and media cultures. It examines universal access and the racial and ethnic digital divide from the perspective of digital media learning and youth.


•?Standard Basque: A Progressive Grammar

By Rudolf P. G. de Rijk, who taught at Leiden University until he retired in 2002

MIT Press, £64.95

ISBN 9780262042420

This is the first modern pedagogically oriented reference grammar in English for this new standard language, with 33 chapters covering topics that range from orthography and pronunciation to case endings. De Rijk’s book was prepared for publication after his death in 2003 by Virginia de Rijk-Chan, with Armand de Coene and Fleur Veraart and the assistance of linguists at Cornell University.


•?Essential Jazz: The First 100 Years

By Henry Martin, professor of music, Rutgers University, and Keith Waters, associate professor of music theory, University of Colorado at Boulder

Wadsworth, £36.99

ISBN 9780495505259

An introduction to jazz and American culture for a general readership.


•?Religious Experience in Contemporary China

By Xinzhong Yao, professor of Chinese religions, University of Wales Lampeter, and senior research fellow, University of Oxford; and Paul Badham, professor of theology and religious studies, University of Wales, Lampeter, and senior research fellow, Oxford

University of Wales Press, £75.00

ISBN 9780708320358

This study uses data on the religious life of the Han Chinese, collected over four years, to try to provide a deeper understanding of the role of faith in the officially communist state.

•?The Rhetorical Act: Thinking, Speaking and Writing Critically

By Karlyn Kohrs Campbell, department chair of communication studies, University of Minnesota, and Susan Schultz Huxman, associate professor and director at the Elliott School of Communication, Wichita State University

Wadsworth, £35.00

ISBN 9780495091721

The authors aim to teach liberal arts students how to become articulate rhetoricians and critics of their symbolic universe.

•?The Church in the Nineteenth Century

By Frances Knight, senior lecturer in the modern history of Christianity, University of Wales, Lampeter

I. B. Tauris, £19.50

ISBN 9781850438991

Knight’s study of one of the most volatile times in Christian development focuses on the experience of “ordinary” Christians, as well as an overview of movements such as Mormonism.


•?Embattled Garrisons:

Comparative Base Politics and American Globalism

By Kent E. Calder, director of the Reischauer Center for East Asian Studies, Johns Hopkins University School for Advanced International Studies

Princeton University Press, £14.95

ISBN 9780691134635

Stationing soldiers overseas has been central to US military policy since the Second World War; here, the history of overseas bases is outlined and their political impact is discussed.


•?Principles of Cognitive Neuroscience

By Dale Purves, Elizabeth Brannon, Roberto Cabeza, Scott A. Huettel, Kevin LaBar, Michael Platt and Marty Woldorff, all professors in psychology and neuroscience, Duke University

Palgrave Macmillan, £39.99

ISBN 9780878936946

This text covers the growing canon of cognitive neuroscience and its future challenges. It includes an interactive tutorial on human neuroanatomy and a digital atlas of human brain structure.

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