514 episodes

Interviews with Historians about their New Books
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    • Society & Culture
    • 3.9 • 164 Ratings

Interviews with Historians about their New Books
Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/history

    Saskia E. Wieringa and Nursyahbani Katjasungkana, "Propaganda and the Genocide in Indonesia" (Routledge, 2018)

    Saskia E. Wieringa and Nursyahbani Katjasungkana, "Propaganda and the Genocide in Indonesia" (Routledge, 2018)

    Several months ago, Saskia Wieringa joined her co-authors Jess Melvin and Annie Pohlman on the show to talk about their edited volume The International People's Tribunal for 1965 and the Indonesian Genocide.  
    This time, Wieringa is on the show to talk about another co-edited volume.  Propaganda and the Genocide in Indonesia (Routledge, 2018) is a kind of companion volume to the first study. Wieringa and Katjusungkana focus here on the way in which propaganda set the stage for, encouraged participation in and offered explanations for the genocide. This campaign portrayed communists as enemies of the Indonesian nation. But more than that, the propaganda leveraged already existing political and gender stereotypes, presenting communists as atheists, hypersexualized and amoral. This propaganda was and remains widely accepted in Indonesia, enabling mass violence in the 1960s and political persecution in the decades since.
    But the book expands at time from its core focus on propaganda, shedding new light on the events of 30 September and, in particular, on the impacts of the violence on contemporary Indonesian society. Scholars and casual readers will find much of interest in the book.
    Kelly McFall is Professor of History and Director of the Honors Program at Newman University.
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    • 1 hr 3 min
    Michael S. Neiberg, "When France Fell: The Vichy Crisis and the Fate of the Anglo-American Alliance" (Harvard UP, 2021)

    Michael S. Neiberg, "When France Fell: The Vichy Crisis and the Fate of the Anglo-American Alliance" (Harvard UP, 2021)

    According to US Secretary of War Henry Stimson, the "most shocking single event" of World War II was not the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, but rather the fall of France in spring 1940. Michael Neiberg offers a dramatic history of the American response--a policy marked by panic and moral ineptitude, which placed the United States in league with fascism and nearly ruined the alliance with Britain.
    The successful Nazi invasion of France destabilized American planners' strategic assumptions. At home, the result was huge increases in defense spending, the advent of peacetime military conscription, and domestic spying to weed out potential fifth columnists. Abroad, the United States decided to work with Vichy France despite its pro-Nazi tendencies. The US-Vichy partnership, intended to buy time and temper the flames of war in Europe, severely strained Anglo-American relations. American leaders naively believed that they could woo men like Philippe Pétain, preventing France from becoming a formal German ally. The British, however, understood that Vichy was subservient to Nazi Germany and instead supported resistance figures such as Charles de Gaulle. After the war, the choice to back Vichy tainted US-French relations for decades.
    Our collective memory of World War II as a period of American strength overlooks the desperation and faulty decision making that drove US policy from 1940 to 1943. Tracing the key diplomatic and strategic moves of these formative years, When France Fell: The Vichy Crisis and the Fate of the Anglo-American Alliance (Harvard UP, 2021) gives us a more nuanced and complete understanding of the war and of the global position the United States would occupy afterward.
    Charles Coutinho Ph. D. of the Royal Historical Society, received his doctorate from New York University. His area of specialization is 19th and 20th-century European, American diplomatic and political history. He has written for Chatham House’s International Affairs, the Institute of Historical Research's Reviews in History and the University of Rouen's online periodical Cercles.
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    • 33 min
    Anustup Basu, "Hindutva as Political Monotheism" (Duke UP, 2020)

    Anustup Basu, "Hindutva as Political Monotheism" (Duke UP, 2020)

    In Hindutva as Political Monotheism (Duke University Press, 2020), Professor Anustup Basu provides a genealogical study of Hindutva. The interview is a discussion upon the connection drawn by the author between the Hindu nationalism and Carl Schmitt’s idea of political theology to portray the orientalist and Eurocentric nature of the Hindutva ideology. Further, the podcast is an enquiry into the ideas portrayed by Professor Basu throughout his book, ranging from complications that accompany the Hindutva insistence on the original varna system, the journey of Indian modernization, and the emergence of Hindutva 2.0 as advertised monotheism. As pointed out by the author, this book is not an answer to the present but an investigation of the present ground.
    Shruti Dixit is a PhD Divinity Candidate at CSRP, University of St Andrews, researching the Hindu-Christian Dialogue in Apocalyptic Prophecies.
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    • 1 hr 5 min
    Margherita Zanasi, "Economic Thought in Modern China: Market and Consumption, c.1500–1937" (Cambridge UP, 2020)

    Margherita Zanasi, "Economic Thought in Modern China: Market and Consumption, c.1500–1937" (Cambridge UP, 2020)

    In Economic Thought in Modern China: Market and Consumption, c.1500–1937 (Cambridge University Press, 2020), Margherita Zanasi argues that basic notions of a free market economy emerged in China a century and half earlier than in Europe. In response to the commercial revolutions of the late 1500s, Chinese intellectuals and officials called for the end of state intervention in the market, recognizing its power to self-regulate. They also noted the elasticity of domestic demand and production, arguing in favour of ending long-standing rules against luxury consumption, an idea that emerged in Europe in the late seventeenth and early nineteenth centuries. Zanasi challenges Eurocentric theories of economic modernization as well as the assumption that European Enlightenment thought was unique in its ability to produce innovative economic ideas. She instead establishes a direct connection between observations of local economic conditions and the formulation of new theories, revealing the unexpected flexibility of the Confucian tradition and its accommodation of seemingly unorthodox ideas.
    Margherita Zanasi is Professor of Chinese History at Louisiana State University. She has published widely on different aspects of modern China's history, including her first book Saving the Nation: Economic Modernity in Republican China (University of Chicago Press, 2005). She also serves as the editor of the journal Twentieth Century China. 
    Ghassan Moazzin is an Assistant Professor at the Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences and the Department of History at the University of Hong Kong. He works on the economic and business history of 19th and 20th century China, with a particular focus on the history of foreign banking, international finance and electricity in modern China. His first book, Foreign Banks and Global Finance in Modern China: Banking on the Chinese Frontier, 1870–1919, is forthcoming with Cambridge University Press.
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    • 1 hr 29 min
    Álvaro Santana-Acuña, "Ascent to Glory: How One Hundred Years of Solitude Was Written and Became a Global Classic" (Columbia UP, 2020)

    Álvaro Santana-Acuña, "Ascent to Glory: How One Hundred Years of Solitude Was Written and Became a Global Classic" (Columbia UP, 2020)

    One Hundred Years of Solitude is a revered classic today fifty five years after it was first published in 1967. Today I talked to Alvaro Santana Acuña a sociologist and historian who describes the ingredients that went into manufacturing the success of this book. In Ascent to Glory: How One Hundred Years of Solitude Was Written and Became a Global Classic (Columbia UP, 2020), Alvaro Santana-Acuña first deconstructs the “fake news” surrounding García Márquez and then describes the cultural brokers, the literary cognoscenti of the Boom, the gatekeepers, the Spanish publishing industry and the Casa de las Americas who made the One Hundred Years of Solitude a bestseller across generations. The multitudinous references in this book are part of the archives that Alvaro Santana-Acuña has curated for an exhibition “Gabriel Garcia Márquez – The Making of a Global Writer” by the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, Austin which will run till January 2022.
    Minni Sawhney is a professor of Hispanic Studies at the University of Delhi
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    • 50 min
    Barbara Martin, "Dissident Histories in the Soviet Union: From De-Stalinization to Perestroika" (Bloomsbury, 2019)

    Barbara Martin, "Dissident Histories in the Soviet Union: From De-Stalinization to Perestroika" (Bloomsbury, 2019)

    In Dissident Histories in the Soviet Union: From De-Stalinization to Perestroika (Bloomsbury,, 2019), Barbara Martin traces the careers of four prominent figures: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Roy Medvedev, Aleksandr Nekrich and Anton Antonov-Ovseenko. Based on extensive archival research into these four authors, Martin provides a new account of dissident history writing in the Soviet Union from the post-Stalin Thaw through to the Brezhnev era and Perestroika. Dissident Histories illuminates the challenges associated with researching, writing and publishing Soviet history and the critical impact that this work had on intellectual life in the Soviet Union.
    Barbara Martin is a postdoctoral researcher within the Department of History at the University of Basel.
    Iva Glisic is a historian and art historian specialising in modern Russia and the Balkans.
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    • 1 hr 1 min

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5
164 Ratings

164 Ratings

Nick Naque ,

Get better interviewers

The books and authors covered in the podcast are ver interesting. But the people conducting the interviews are adequate at best and not infrequently embarrassing.

Zendude2664 ,

Going Downhill

Can’t develop a format to train the interviewer, which is not surprising since the boss conducts some seriously unprofessional and rambling interviews.

See the “Joseph Smith” giggle fest as an example.

Clearly the whole idea is to just flood the market with content.

Writers and publishers be aware how this makes your hard work appear.

jrm36 ,

Great job by Jana Byers on Sex and Gender book

I always appreciate the work that the interviewers put into this, knowing that they’re not professionals and they’re not paid, and I don’t expect a professional level of polish. Some of them however are unusually good, confident, engaged interviewers, like this one.

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