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Social Science

New Books in Political Science

Marshall Poe

+2 FANS
Interviews with Political Scientists about their New Books
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54:44 | Sep 6th

The military coup that brought General Pervez Musharraf to power as Pakistan's tenth president resulted in the abolition of a century-old sharecropping system that was rife with corruption. In its place the military regime implemented a market reform...Show More

50:55 | Sep 5th

The New Deal left a host of political, institutional, and economic legacies. Among them was the restructuring of the government into an administrative state with a powerful executive leader and a large class of unelected officials. This "leviathan" s...Show More
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33:53 | Aug 28th

Just in time for the APSA annual meeting, Niambi Michele Carter has written an incredibly timely book on a central issue to American politics, American While Black: African Americans, Immigration, and the Limits of Citizenship (Oxford University Pres...Show More

39:45 | Aug 26th

Suzanne Scott’s new book Fake Geek Girls: Fandom, Gender, and the Convergence Culture Industry (NYU Press, 2019) provides an overview of the convergence culture industry and the world of fandom while examining the role that gender and misogyny has pl...Show More

1:00:18 | Aug 22nd

Can there be a political science of the Holocaust? Evgeny Finkel, in his new book Ordinary Jews: Choice and Survival during the Holocaust(Princeton University Press, 2017), answers Charles King's question with a resounding yes.Finkel is interested in...Show More

47:46 | Aug 21st

Initiated in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks, have the reforms of the US intelligence enterprise served their purpose? What have been the results of the creation of the Department of Homeland Security, the Office of the Director o...Show More

1:17:31 | Aug 19th

Reflecting on his fifty-year effort to steer the Grand Old Party toward black voters, Memphis power broker George W. Lee declared, "Somebody had to stay in the Republican Party and fight." As Joshua D. Farrington, Instructor in African & African-Amer...Show More

56:23 | Aug 19th

This episode is the first in a new series, New Books in Interpretive Social Science, which will feature works on interpretive research design and practice alongside recently published exemplary interpretive social scientific studies. To get the ball ...Show More

1:09:03 | Aug 16th

How can this happen? If there's any question that people interested in genocide ask, it's this one. How can people do this to each other? How can this be possible? What is wrong with this world that this can happen?Maureen Hiebert's book Constructing...Show More

56:55 | Aug 14th

Kevin Baron’s new book, Presidential Privilege and the Freedom of Information Act (Edinburgh University Press, 2019), is a fascinating analysis of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and how this act, passed in the 1960s and signed by President Lyn...Show More

46:15 | Aug 9th

Nazia Kazi’s Islamophobia, Race, and Global Politics (Rowman & Littlefield, 2018) is a brilliant and powerful meditation on the intersection and interaction of Islamophobia, racism, and U.S. imperial state power. This book seeks to reorient our under...Show More

38:20 | Aug 9th

In his book, De-Moralizing Gay Rights: Some Queer Remarks on LGBT+ Rights Politics in the US(Palgrave Macmillan, 2018), Cyril Ghosh interrogates three arenas of debate over LGBT+ rights in the contemporary American landscape—debates over and critique...Show More

49:19 | Aug 8th

Kaitlin Sidorsky’s new book, All Roads Lead to Power: The Appointed and Elected Paths to Public Office for US Women (University Press of Kansas, 2019), is an extremely well written and important analysis of women in public life and public service. Th...Show More

1:21:54 | Aug 7th

In 1970s America, politicians began "getting tough" on drugs, crime, and welfare. These campaigns helped expand the nation's penal system, discredit welfare programs, and cast blame for the era's social upheaval on racialized deviants that the state ...Show More

48:44 | Aug 7th

The United States has been the world's dominant power for more than a century. Now many analysts and commentators believe that other countries such as China are rising and the United States is in decline. Is the era of American hegemony over? Is Amer...Show More

52:05 | Aug 7th

Are ethnic conflicts in Africa the product of age-old ancient hatreds? Tsega Etefa’s new book, The Origins of Ethnic Conflict in Africa: Politics and Violence in Darfur, Oromia, and the Tana Delta (Palgrave MacMillan, 2019), provides an answer, argui...Show More

25:51 | Aug 6th

Federal housing finance policy and mortgage-backed securities have gained widespread attention in recent years because of the 2008 financial crisis, but government credit has been part of American life since the nation’s founding. Sarah L. Quinn’s ne...Show More

1:11:24 | Aug 1st

Sometimes people are blameworthy or otherwise not admirable because of what they believe. And sometimes they are blameworthy or otherwise not admirable because of how they believe – broadly, their ways of thinking, inquiring, handling evidence, and m...Show More

1:13:41 | Aug 1st

It is hard to overestimate the influence of John Rawls on political philosophy and theory over the last half-century. His books have sold millions of copies worldwide, and he is one of the few philosophers whose work is known in the corridors of powe...Show More

23:36 | Jul 26th

In Polarization: What Everyone Needs to Know (Oxford University Press, 2019), Nolan McCarty synthesizes what scholars know and don't know about the origins, development, and implications of rising political conflicts in the United States. While the c...Show More

56:28 | Jul 25th

Sam Erman is the author of Almost Citizens: Puerto Rico, the U.S. Constitution, and Empire, published by Cambridge University Press in 2018. Almost Citizens recounts the story of how Puerto Rico came to be part of the United States empire at the turn...Show More

41:15 | Jul 24th

Jamie Aroosi has written an important book that brings together the theoretical work of Karl Marx and Soren Kierkegaard in a kind of intellectual encounter. Noting the common historical context for both authors, and how they both came to their philos...Show More

1:02:20 | Jul 23rd

Susan Ellison’s Domesticating Democracy: The Politics of Conflict Resolution in Bolivia (Duke University Press, 2018) explores the world of foreign-funded alternate dispute resolution (ADR) organizations working in El Alto, Bolivia. Ellison’s engagin...Show More

24:33 | Jul 22nd

Both the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Trade Organization (WTO) practice periodic surveillance of member states to ensure they are adopting effective economic policies. Despite the importance of these practices, they remain understu...Show More

1:13:17 | Jul 22nd

Illiberal China: The Ideological Challenge of the People's Republic of China (Palgrave, 2018) by Daniel Vukovich analyzes the 'intellectual political culture' of post-Tiananmen China in comparison to and in conflict with liberalism inside and outside...Show More

44:20 | Jul 19th

In his book  Peacemakers: American Leadership and the End of Genocide in the Balkans (University of Kentucky Press, 2017), Ambassador James W. Pardew describes the role of the U.S. involvement in ending the wars and genocide in the Balkans.  As a sol...Show More

57:49 | Jul 17th

In The Politics of Annihilation: A Genealogy of Genocide (University of Minnesota Press, 2019),Benjamin Meiches takes a novel approach to the study of genocide by analyzing the ways in which ideas, concepts, and understandings about what genocide is ...Show More

1:02:54 | Jul 10th

In his book, The Second Creation: Fixing the American Constitution in the Founding Era (Harvard University Press, 2018), Jonathan Gienapp revisits the Founding Era to retell the story of America’s favorite document. Looking at the Constitution’s crea...Show More

23:23 | Jul 9th

Eric Blanc is the author of Red State Revolt: The Teachers’ Strike Wave and Working-Class Politics(Verso, 2019). Blanc is a former teacher, journalist, and doctoral student in sociology at New York University. He has written for The Nation, The Guard...Show More

50:43 | Jul 8th

Over the past 50 years, the architects of the religious right have become household names: Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, James Dobson. They have used their massively influential platforms to build the profiles of evangelical politicians like Mike Huc...Show More

46:05 | Jul 3rd

Bhakti Shringarpure has written a fascinating, multidimensional analysis of the Cold War and decolonization and the often-under-explored connections between these events. In her book, Cold War Assemblages: Decolonization to Digital (Routledge, 2019),...Show More

24:46 | Jul 2nd

With the US in the midst of on-going negotiations with Iran, North Korea, and China, how is Congress playing a part? How is the new generation of Congress advocating for and against US action? Jeffrey Lantis’ new book answers these questions. He is t...Show More

41:36 | Jul 2nd

I spoke with Dr Yuen Yuen Ang, Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She published in 2016 a great new book How China Escaped the Poverty Trap (Cornell University Press, 2016). This is a very original and ...Show More

53:21 | Jul 1st

Why do international peacebuilding organizations sometimes succeed and sometimes fail, even within the same country? Bridging the gaps between the peacekeeping, peacebuilding, and global governance scholarship, this book argues that international pea...Show More

1:06:37 | Jun 28th

The social history of Turkey across the twentieth century has produced a tension between state governance and religion. This history informs and shapes modern subjects as they try to live out an authentic vision of the present. In Muslim Civil Societ...Show More

53:28 | Jun 28th

Someday we may say that we never saw it coming. After seventy-five years of peace in the Pacific, a new challenger to American power has emerged, on a scale not seen since the Soviet Union at its height. With a deep if partially contrived sense of na...Show More

47:11 | Jun 26th

American society is deeply divided at this moment—not just on values and opinions but on basic perceptions of reality. In their latest book, One Nation, Two Realities: Dueling Facts in American Democracy (Oxford University Press, 2019), Morgan Mariet...Show More

42:16 | Jun 25th

Why does Korean cultural policy matter? In Cultural Policy in South Korea: Making a New Patron State (Routledge, 2018), Hye-Kyung Lee, a Senior Lecturer in Cultural and Creative Industries at Kings College, London, demonstrates the importance of Sout...Show More

1:01:01 | Jun 24th

In 1956 Albert Gore, Sr. received national attention as one of only three senators from the states of the former Confederacy who refused to sign the infamous “Southern Manifesto” opposing the racial integration of public spaces. Lauded as Gore was by...Show More

59:01 | Jun 24th

In recent years, Confucius Institutes—cultural and language programs funded by the Chinese government—have garnered attention in the United States due to a debate over whether they threaten free speech and academic freedom. In addition to this, much ...Show More

34:49 | Jun 21st

David Karol’s new book, Red, Green, and Blue: The Partisan Divide on Environmental Issues (Cambridge University Press, 2019), examines the history of environmental policy within American political parties. He ably integrates the early conservation mo...Show More

1:14:46 | Jun 18th

There are countless ways to study the history of U.S. foreign policy. David Milne, however, makes the case that it is “often best understood” as “intellectual history.” In his innovative book, Worldmaking: The Art and Science of American Diplomacy (F...Show More

24:33 | Jun 17th

Rule-making may rarely make headlines, but the significance of this largely hidden process cannot be underestimated. Rachel Augustine Potter makes the case in Bending the Rules: Procedural Politicking in the Bureaucracy (University of Chicago Press, ...Show More

23:48 | Jun 14th

Expansion of federal power has typically come with the consent of states, often eager to receive the funding tied to new policy priorities. Not so any more, as some states have famously rejected funding for Medicaid expansion. Was the case of Medicai...Show More

51:14 | Jun 14th

More than 70 years after its founding, with Narendra Modi's authoritarian Hindu nationalists in government, is the dream of Indian democracy still alive and well? Indian Democracy: Origins, Trajectories, Contestations (Pluto Press, 2019), a prescient...Show More

1:05:24 | Jun 11th

Joseph C. Sternberg's book The Theft of a Decade: How the Baby Boomers Stole the Millennials’ Economic Future (PublicAffairs, 2019) is an analysis of the economic condition of the Millennial generation, which was as cohort of people born between 1981...Show More

55:17 | Jun 10th

Dan HoSang and Joe Lowndes’ new book,Producers, Parasites, Patriots: Race and the New Right-Wing Politics of Precarity (University of Minnesota Press, 2019) documents the changing politics of race and class in the age of Trump across a broad range of...Show More

1:02:36 | Jun 6th

Jennifer Dixon’s Dark Pasts: Changing the State’s Story in Turkey and Japan (Cornell University Press, 2018), investigates the Japanese and Turkish states’ narratives of their “dark pasts,” the Nanjing Massacre (1937-38) and Armenian Genocide (1915-1...Show More

27:26 | Jun 6th

Neoliberal policies have been a primary feature of American political economy for decades. In Framing Inequality: News Media, Public Opinion, and the Neoliberal Turn in US Public Policy (Oxford University Press, 2019), Matt Guardino focuses on the po...Show More

1:01:41 | Jun 5th

In the new book #Identity: Hashtagging Race, Gender, Sexuality, and Nation (University of Michigan Press, 2019), Abigail De Kosnik and Keith Feldman bring together a broad array of chapters that dive into multiple perspectives on social media engagem...Show More

52:41 | Jun 3rd

Demetra Kasimis’s new book, The Perpetual Immigrant and the Limits of Athenian Democracy (Cambridge University Press, 2018) interrogates the role and unstable place of the metics (metoikoi) in Athenian society.  The book focuses on three different pr...Show More

37:55 | May 31st

As we’ve previously discussed, there are a lot of books about democracy filling book store and library shelves right now. Norman Eisen could have written a book in the vein of Daniel Ziblatt and Steven Levitsky’s How Democracies Die or David Frum’s T...Show More

50:08 | May 31st

Chris Galdieri has written an engaging analysis of carpetbagging in American politics. Stranger in a Strange State: The Politics of Carpetbagging from Robert Kennedy to Scott Brown (SUNY Press, 2019), and its focus on individual case studies, highlig...Show More

1:08:26 | May 31st

No, not the Lincoln-Douglas debates. Perhaps even more important than that Illinois contest of 1858 was the Webster-Hayne debate of 1830.Confused? Drawing a blank? Not really your fault. Would you be even more surprised to hear that these were debate...Show More

44:24 | May 28th

In his book Can Democracy Work? A Short History of a Radical Idea from Ancient Athens to Our World (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2018), James Miller encapsulates 2500 years of democracy history into about 250 pages — making the case that “people power”...Show More

47:43 | May 24th

Mark D. White's new book Batman and Ethics (Wiley Blackwell, 2019) focuses on the comic book character Batman, particularly from the early 1970s through 2011, exploring Batman’s motivations, his mission, aspects of the mission that do not always work...Show More

39:00 | May 24th

Jeremy Black, professor of history at Exeter, is well-known as one of the most prolific of publishing historians. His latest book, War and its Causes (Rowman & Littlefield, 2019), returns to a subject upon which he has already published several groun...Show More

26:50 | May 23rd

Gwendoline M. Alphonso's new book Polarized Families, Polarized Parties: Contesting Values and Economics in American Politics (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2018) demonstrates how regional ideas about family in the 20th century shaped, not only R...Show More

35:25 | May 23rd

Daniel Ziblatt has done a lot of interviews since the release of How Democracies Die (Crown, 2018) the bestselling book he co-wrote with Steven Levitsky. But we asked him a question he’d never gotten before — about a line toward the end of the book w...Show More

41:15 | May 22nd

Today I spoke with Francesco Grillo (co-authored with Raffaella Nanetti) about his latest book, Democracy and Growth in the 21st Century: The Diverging Cases of China and Italy (Palgrave Macmillan, 2019). Despite the title, it is not strictly a book ...Show More

22:43 | May 21st

“You think I am crazy, and I know you are not” is what future-White House Chief of Staff and then-House Freedom Caucus leader Congressman Mick Mulvaney said to Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy. The two members of Congress were playing a game of chicken...Show More

25:21 | May 17th

Ballot initiatives offer voters the chance to directly determine the outcome of state policy change. Do Americans who vote on initiatives grow in political efficacy and participate more in the future? Or is the initiative process ultimately undemocra...Show More

59:30 | May 15th

Peter Josephson and Ward Holder collaborated on their second book on theologian and political theorist Reinhold Niebuhr in producing this new book, specifically focusing on the questions of “why Niebuhr?” and “why Niebuhr now?” Josephson and Holder n...Show More

33:29 | May 14th

The endlessly fascinating 1968 presidential race transformed American politics in ways that are still being felt. Aram Goudsouzian explores the characters who shaped that race in The Men and the Moment: The Election of 1968 and the Rise of Partisan P...Show More

1:12:01 | May 14th

In a series of riveting and in depth interviews, America's senior statesman, former Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, discusses the challenges of directing foreign policy during times of great global tension. With insights which are pertinent to t...Show More

50:54 | May 10th

Gender in the Political Science Classroom (Indiana University Press, 2018) is part of a series at Indiana University Press on the scholarship of teaching and learning (SOTL), and there is much within the book that is directly within the SOTL arena, b...Show More

54:32 | May 3rd

Erin M. Kempker is an associate professor of history at Mississippi University for Women and the author of Big Sister: Feminism, Conservatism and Conspiracy in the Heartland (University of Illinois, 2018). The author examines how 1970s right-wing wom...Show More

52:31 | May 3rd

Jessica Rich’s new book, State-Sponsored Activism: Bureaucrats and Social Movements in Democratic Brazil (Cambridge University Press, 2019) is a fascinating and important examination of civil-state relations, social movements, and bureaucracies all c...Show More

25:01 | May 2nd

It is an article of faith in many circles that the most effective and efficient way to solve a broad range of local and national problems is through public-private partnerships. What’s not to like? Especially in a climate in which people think resour...Show More

1:25:28 | Apr 30th

Michael J. Mazarr has written a history of the policy planning process leading up to the Iraq War in 2003.  Mazarr has conducted over one hundred interviews with senior policy officials from the George W. Bush administration, combined with a comprehe...Show More

46:03 | Apr 30th

In The Form of the Firm: A Normative Political Theory of the Corporation (Oxford University Press, 2018), Abraham Singer essentially marries together two disciplinary schools of thought and approaches to understand and consider the corporate firm. In...Show More

1:06:48 | Apr 30th

The U.S. Constitution is often depicted in popular films, teaching lessons about what this founding document means and what it requires. The United States Constitution in Film: Part of Our National Culture (Lexington Books, 2018) examines several dif...Show More

58:58 | Apr 29th

In the post–Cold War era, states increasingly find themselves in conflicts with nonstate actors. Finding it difficult to fight these opponents directly, many governments instead target states that harbor or aid nonstate actors, using threats and puni...Show More

49:54 | Apr 22nd

Since 2011, civil wars and state failure have wracked the Arab world, underlying the misalignment between national identity and political borders. In Break all the Borders: Separatism and the Resshaping of the Middle East (Oxford UP, 2019), Ariel I. ...Show More

26:16 | Apr 18th

Scholars and pundits have been busy trying to assess the legacy of President Barack Obama. Few have done so with the nuance and comparative approach of Andra Gillespie. In her new book Race and the Obama Administration: Substance, Symbols, and Hope (...Show More

32:30 | Mar 13th

Politicians love to woo entertainment corporations to their states and cities through subsidies and tax cities. But Pat Garofalo argues that such incentives waste taxpayer money in The Billionaire Boondoggle: How Our Politicians Let Corporations and ...Show More

54:37 | Mar 11th

Martha S. Jones, in her excellent new book Birthright Citizens: A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America(Cambridge University Press, 2018), weaves together the legal and constitutional dimensions of citizenship—from the Founding documents a...Show More

35:59 | Mar 8th

The 1996 repeal of Aid to Families with Dependent Children -- the New Deal-era relief program for poor women with children -- was a seminal moment in the modern history of the US welfare state. That the charge was led by a Democratic president makes ...Show More

24:28 | Mar 8th

Reece Peck's Fox Populism: Branding Conservatism as Working Class (Cambridge University Press, 2019) offers a unique argument of why the Fox News Channel has been both a commercial successful and wielded enormous political influence. Peck focuses on ...Show More

58:39 | Mar 7th

There can be little doubt that Hong Kong has stood out as a particularly intense East Asian news hotspot in recent years. Whether reports have focused on pro-democracy protests, abducted booksellers or PRC Mainland integration plans, most of this new...Show More

33:26 | Mar 4th

Greg Sargent’s new book, An Uncivil War: Taking Back Our Democracy in an Age of Trumpian Disinformation and Thunderdome Politics (HarperCollins, 2018), dives into an analysis of the strength and fragility of American democracy, and surveys a lot of t...Show More

1:01:24 | Feb 28th

The intersection of religion and politics in the United States is one of the nation's most enduring conversations. Christian: The Politics of a Word in America(Harvard University Press, 2018) by Dr. Matthew Bowman at Henderson State University, was r...Show More

51:44 | Feb 27th

In her book Suspect Citizens: Women, Virtue, and Vice in Backlash Politics (Temple University Press, 2012), Jocelyn M. Boryczka explores the fraught position that women find themselves in as citizens of the United States. She examines this complex po...Show More

26:38 | Feb 25th

With at least one new billionaire in the 2020 presidential race, the politics of the one percent are with us again. What do billionaires believe? And do they believe the same things as the average American? Answering these questions has until now bee...Show More

59:47 | Feb 25th

How do you put Humpty-Dumpty back together again?Susan Thomson's new book Rwanda: From Genocide to Precarious Peace (Yale University Press, 2018) examines the postwar history of Rwanda to consider the ways the Rwandan genocide shaped governance, poli...Show More

23:49 | Feb 15th

Back on the podcast for the second time in two years is Alex Hertel-Fernandez. You might recall his last book Politics at Work which examined the way employers are increasingly recruiting their workers into politics to change elections and public pol...Show More

1:03:02 | Feb 12th

With recent events having raised hopes that significant change may be afoot in North Korea, it is important to remember that DPRK society has in fact been undergoing steady transformation for a considerable period of time. Among the most important di...Show More

52:57 | Feb 12th

Debra Thompson, in her award-winning* book The Schematic State: Race, Transnationalism, and the Politics of the Census (Cambridge University Press, 2016), explores the complexities of the politics of the census. This book, which unpacks the census it...Show More

54:41 | Feb 11th

Insurgent Women: Female Combatants in Civil Wars (Georgetown University Press, 2019), investigates the mobilization of female fighters, women’s roles in combat, and what happens to women when conflicts end.  The book focuses on three case studies of ...Show More

1:01:52 | Feb 5th

Today we are joined by Danyel Reiche, Associate Professor of Comparative Politics at the American University of Beirut, and the author of Success and Failure of Countries at the Olympic Games (Routedge, 2016)In Success and Failure, Reiche provides a ...Show More

1:04:13 | Feb 4th

In the opening chapter of his edited volume, Social Systems and Design, out from Springer in 2014, Gary Metcalf asks if it is possible to establish ethical “first principles” for the design of social systems.  Inspired by his mentor, Bela Banathy (a ...Show More

55:20 | Feb 4th

In his new book, Matthew Longo takes the reader on an unusual journey, at least within political theory, since his work combines a normative political theory approach with an ethnographic approach to understand both the conceptual and actual issue of...Show More

1:07:57 | Jan 28th

The creation of the postwar welfare state in Great Britain did not represent the logical progression of governmental policy over a period of generations. As George R. Boyer details in The Winding Road to the Welfare State: Economic Insecurity and Soc...Show More

1:05:29 | Jan 17th

Jonathan Fulton's China's Relations with the Gulf Monarchies (Routledge, 2018) sheds light on China’s increasing economic role at a moment that the traditionally dominant role in international oil markets of Saudi Arabia and other Gulf oil producers ...Show More

1:03:34 | Jan 10th

Costa Rica is the only full-fledged and totally independent country to be entirely demilitarized. Its military was abolished in 1948, with the keys to the armory handed to the Department of Education. Socially, Costa Rica is a success story. Although...Show More

1:02:25 | Jan 10th

Onur Ulas Ince constructs an important analysis of liberalism, capitalism, and empire in his new book, Colonial Capitalism and the Dilemmas of Liberalism (Oxford University Press, 2018). This text brings together a number of lenses through which to c...Show More

22:51 | Jan 9th

Pamela Herd and Donald Moynihan are authors of Administrative Burden: Policymaking by Other Means (Russell Sage Foundation Press, 2019). Herd is a Professor in the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University; Moynihan is the inaugural Mc...Show More

52:30 | Jan 4th

How is it that “liberalism” is a word so ubiquitous and yet we can hardly seem to agree on its meaning? In her book The Lost History of Liberalism: From Ancient Rome to the Twenty-First Century (Princeton University Press, 2018), Helena Rosenblatt tr...Show More

40:52 | Jan 4th

Today I spoke with Flavia di Mario, a young scholar of political economy and industrial relations. She coauthored a very provocative book with Andrea Micocci, The Fascist Nature of Neoliberalism (Routledge, 2017). Flavia is doctoral student at London...Show More

20:19 | Dec 31st, 2018

To wrap up the year and look ahead to 2019, we talked about the books we loved. There were so many great books in 2018, that we had the chance to mention just a few. Lilly reviewed her interview with Elizabeth Cohen about The Political Value of Time ...Show More

1:00:41 | Dec 28th, 2018

Jonathan Fulton and Li-Chen Sim’s edited volume, External Powers and the Gulf Monarchies(Routledge, 2018) is a timely contribution to understanding the increasingly diversified relations between the Gulf’s six oil-rich monarchies and external powers....Show More

24:23 | Dec 27th, 2018

One of the themes of the era of Donald Trump is whiteness and white identity. From his first steps into the public eye, Trump used race to frame his positions and relevance. His presidency has been no different.White identity, though, has remained a ...Show More

46:01 | Dec 26th, 2018

“One-off” protests don’t change the world; sustained direct action campaigns do. That’s one of the many insights from George Lakey in his new book, How We Win: A Guide to Nonviolent Direct Action Campaigning (Melville House, 2018). Lakey, a retired S...Show More

23:53 | Dec 12th, 2018

2018 has been a great year for books about sub-national government in the United States. The year ends with another to add to the list. Jessica Trounstine has written Segregation by Design: Local Politics and Inequality in American Cities(Cambridge U...Show More

38:31 | Dec 10th, 2018

Whether you love him or hate him, it is indisputable that few, if any, other 20th-century American presidents were as historically consequential as Woodrow Wilson. Historian Patricia O’Toole explores the many complexities and ramifications of the Wil...Show More

1:04:01 | Dec 6th, 2018

McKenzie Wark’s new book offers 21 focused studies of thinkers working in a wide range of fields who are worth your attention. The chapters of General Intellects: Twenty-One Thinkers for the Twenty-First Century (Verso, 2017) introduce readers to imp...Show More

25:13 | Dec 5th, 2018

How political are private foundations? Are they good or bad for democracy? Such are the big questions taken up by Rob Reich in his new book Just Giving: Why Philanthropy is Failing Democracy and How it Can Do Better (Princeton University Press, 2018)...Show More

45:38 | Dec 3rd, 2018

In Identity Crisis: The 2016 Presidential Campaign and the Battle for the Meaning of America (Princeton University Press, 2018), co-authors John Sides, Michael Tesler, and Lynn Vavreck explore the underlying question of American identity as a key com...Show More

56:06 | Dec 3rd, 2018

Amanda Lynch and Siri Veland’s Urgency in the Anthropocene(MIT Press, 2018) is a fascinating and trenchant analysis of the core beliefs and ideas that motivate current political responses to global warming.  Lynch and Veland examine how the ostensibl...Show More

58:04 | Nov 29th, 2018

Aasim Sajjad Akhtar’s The Politics of Common Sense: State, Society and Culture in Pakistan (Cambridge University Press, 2018) is an incisive study of continuity as well as change in Pakistan that has moved the country towards religious conservatism a...Show More

57:07 | Nov 28th, 2018

Sumantra Bose‘s new book Secular States, Religious Politics: India, Turkey and the Future of Secularism (Cambridge University Press, 2018) is a fascinating comparison of the rise of religious parties in the non-Western world’s two major attempts to e...Show More

23:23 | Nov 19th, 2018

Laurel Elder, Brian Frederick, and Barbara Burrell are the authors of American Presidential Candidate Spouses: The Public’s Perspective (Palgrave MacMillan, 2018). Elder is professor of political science at Hartwick College; Frederick is associate pr...Show More

21:34 | Nov 12th, 2018

Following a historic election, we return again to the question of turnout. Who turned out in large numbers to shift power in the House back to the Democrats? What we know about the past is that there are substantial gaps in turnout between different ...Show More

1:06:46 | Nov 5th, 2018

Pragmatism is a longstanding philosophical idiom that advocates public-facing philosophy – philosophy that abandons merely academic puzzles and addresses itself to the social and political problems of the day.  This commitment is perhaps most firmly ...Show More

20:08 | Sep 21st, 2018

Surprising to many, white Evangelicals voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 election at a higher rate than any candidate in the previous four presidential elections. At the same time, the Evangelical community is changing, becoming more racially and et...Show More

57:45 | Sep 17th, 2018

Ellen R. Wald’s timely, well-written history of the Saudi national oil company, Saudi Inc. The Arabian Kingdom’s Pursuit of Power and Profit (Pegasus Books, 2018), is as much the story of the Saudi oil industry as it is of the ruling Al Saud family’s...Show More

1:17:25 | Sep 17th, 2018

The year 2018 marks the 200th anniversary of Frederick Douglass’ birth. It can hardly be said that scholars have neglected Douglass; indeed, he is one of the most written-about figures in American history. But not all aspects of Douglass’ thought hav...Show More

30:11 | Sep 12th, 2018

It has long been a truism that Americans’ disdain for poor people–our collective sense that if they only worked harder or behaved more responsibly they would do well in this land of opportunity–explains, at least in part, why it is we have such a wea...Show More

59:35 | Sep 11th, 2018

Courtney Freer‘s new book Rentier Islamism: The Influence of the Muslim Brotherhood in Gulf Monarchies (Oxford University Press, 2018) contributes significantly to an understanding of one of the most controversial political groups in Middle East poli...Show More

23:55 | Sep 10th, 2018

There’s been a lot written about the Tea Party, but nothing focused on members of Congress like the new book, Reactionary Republicans: How the Tea Party in the House Paved the Way for Trump’s Victory (Oxford University Press, 2018) by Bryan T. Gervai...Show More

43:49 | Aug 27th, 2018

The Political Value of Time: Citizenship, Duration, and Democratic Justice (Cambridge University Press, 2018), Elizabeth F. Cohen’s new book, explores the concept of time, which is both temporal and theoretical, and how time has been integrated into ...Show More

46:35 | Aug 22nd, 2018

Ben Epstein’s new book, The Only Constant is Change: Technology, Political Communication, and Innovation over Time (Oxford University Press, 2018), traces communication changes and innovations in the United States from the time of the Founding to the...Show More

51:19 | Aug 20th, 2018

Mary E. Stuckey’s new book, Political Vocabularies: FDR, The Clergy Letters, and the Elements of Political Argument (Michigan State University Press, 2018), is a fascinating and engaging investigation of an early period during the Roosevelt Administr...Show More

20:26 | Jul 10th, 2018

With so much political effort placed into forcing a wall between the US and Mexico, Andrew Selee’s new book shows how the ties that bind the two countries together are much stronger. Selee has been on the podcast before with his book, What Should Thi...Show More

37:26 | Jun 8th, 2018

Who is in charge? In The Political Class: Why It Matters Who Our Politicians Are (Oxford University Press, 2018), Peter Allen, a Reader in Comparative Politics in the Department of Politics, Languages and International Studies at the University of Ba...Show More

23:50 | Jun 6th, 2018

Recent debates about partisan polarization have focused primarily on ideology and policy views. In Uncivil Agreement: How Politics Became Our Identity (University of Chicago Press, 2018), social identity moves to the center of how to think about the ...Show More

45:50 | Jun 4th, 2018

Is there a difference between the Communist Party as an idea and the Communist Party in practice? A. James McAdams thinks so and takes the global approach to history to write a political and intellectual history of the Communist party. In Vanguard of...Show More

28:58 | May 30th, 2018

Several weeks ago, we had Professor Lilliana Mason on the podcast talking about her book about the process of social sorting that has deepened divides between citizens by aligning race, religion, and region. Mason argues that social sorting acts on a...Show More

25:51 | May 23rd, 2018

Donald Trump famously said “We’re going to win so much you may even get tired of winning.” Tell that to the losers of politics; those who have lost major elections or key political debates. We rarely focus on those who have lost, but Jeffrey Tulis an...Show More

1:05:57 | May 21st, 2018

How do transitions to democracy affect the shape and participation of social movements in the present? In their new book, Legacies and Memories in Movements: Justice and Democracy in Southern Europe (Oxford University Press, 2018), Donatella della Po...Show More

42:43 | May 18th, 2018

During the 2016, journalist Salena Zito, who is based in Western Pennsylvania, sensed a brewing conservative populist in the white working-class when many thought the election would be determined by other demographic groups. Her dispatches from the b...Show More

59:46 | May 17th, 2018

Jon D. Michaels, a professor of law at UCLA Law School, has written an argument in favor of the administrative state and against recent efforts to shift government functions to private contractors.  In Constitutional Coup: Privatization’s Threat to t...Show More

26:01 | May 17th, 2018

Research has demonstrated that women legislators face tougher re-election campaigns, often confronting stiff general election and primary competition. They typically received less favorable media coverage and get less support from their parties. How ...Show More

1:03:52 | May 14th, 2018

The Western concept of democracy has a lineage dating back to the classical world. Paul Cartledge’s book Democracy: A Life (Oxford University Press, 2016) details its origins in ancient Greece and its evolution of it as a theory over the course of th...Show More

31:01 | May 9th, 2018

Why do Indian voters knowingly vote for politicians with pending criminal proceedings against them? Why do political parties recruit criminal politicians among their rank and file? If money and muscle do not mean the failure of democracy, but instead...Show More

50:22 | May 8th, 2018

Autism as a condition has received much focused attention recently, but less attention has been paid to its politics. It is a condition that necessitates significant accommodations and interventions, which can be difficult for people with autism and ...Show More

23:42 | May 7th, 2018

Will the military background of Tulsi Gabbard and Tammy Duckworth lead them to a presidential nomination in 2020 or 2024? If the past is any guide, the answer is a strong maybe. More than half of presidential candidates across US political history ha...Show More

1:08:43 | May 2nd, 2018

Since 1945, the United States has lost every war it started. Why? A Vietnam War veteran, Tufts University Ph. D. and intimate of many of the leading figures in the American national security apparatus in the past forty-years, Dr. Harlan Ullman‘s new ...Show More

29:49 | Apr 19th, 2018

Earlier this year, Jamila Michener visited the podcast to talk about her new book, Fragmented Democracy, about Medicaid and the state-based structure that results in very different experiences of Medicaid recipients from state to state. We return to ...Show More

20:14 | Apr 12th, 2018

John Aldrich and John Griffin are the co-authors of Why Parties Matter: Political Competition and Democracy in the American South (University of Chicago Press, 2018). Aldrich is the Pfizer-Pratt University Professor of Political Science at Duke Unive...Show More

1:14:25 | Apr 10th, 2018

When thinking of Title IX, most people immediately associate this important education policy with either athletics or a general idea of increasing opportunities for women in education. Rarely do those same people know how Title IX originated, how the...Show More

24:02 | Apr 9th, 2018

Alexander Hertel-Fernandez is the author of Politics at Work: How Companies Turn Their Workers into Lobbyists (Oxford University Press, 2018). He is an assistant professor of political science at Columbia University. We often think of corporate polit...Show More

22:04 | Apr 3rd, 2018

In Unconventional, Partisan, and Polarizing Rhetoric: How the 2016 Election Shaped the Way Candidates Strategize, Engage, and Communicate (Rowman and Littlefield, 2017), Jeanine Kraybill, assistant professor of political science at Cal State Universi...Show More

1:14:08 | Mar 29th, 2018

Daniel Kapust‘s book, Flattery and the History of Political Thought: That Glib and Oily Art (Cambridge University Press, 2018), is a rich and fascinating exploration of political thought through the complex lens of the question or concept of flattery...Show More

45:53 | Mar 27th, 2018

Since the 1990s, vast sums of money and time have been invested in training and resources to hold elections around the world, including in parts of Southeast Asia. The conventional wisdom is that elections either enable or consolidate democracy. Wher...Show More

25:54 | Mar 26th, 2018

Deondra Rose has written Citizens by Degree: Higher Education Policy and the Changing Gender Dynamics of American Citizenship (Oxford University Press, 2018). She is an assistant professor of public policy and political science at Duke University. Ci...Show More

26:35 | Mar 21st, 2018

When the state takes over, can local democracy survive? Over 100 school districts have been taken over by state governments since the late 1980s. In doing so, state officials relieve local officials, including those elected by local residents, of the...Show More

26:13 | Mar 19th, 2018

Voting rights are always in the news in American politics, and recent court decisions and an upcoming election in 2018 make this especially true today. Most discussions come back to the Voting Rights Act (VRA) and whether it will continue to provide ...Show More

1:08:28 | Mar 16th, 2018

Alison McQueen explores the apocalyptic thought of political theorists Niccolo Machiavelli, Thomas Hobbes, and Hans Morgenthau in her new book, Political Realism in Apocalyptic Times (Cambridge University Press, 2018). The focus of the book is the wa...Show More

26:11 | Mar 15th, 2018

Since it was published in 2016, Arlie Russell Hochschild‘s Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right (The New Press, 2016) has been many times heralded as necessary reading for our current political moment. For her percept...Show More

24:41 | Mar 12th, 2018

Medicaid provides health care for around 1 in 5 Americans. Despite the large number served, the programs administration by state and local governments means very different things in different places. The geography of federalism matters a lot for Medi...Show More

36:53 | Mar 12th, 2018

In Institutions and Democracy in Africa: How the Rules of the Game Shape Political Developments (Cambridge University Press, 2018), the contributors challenge the argument that African states lack effective political institutions as these have been u...Show More

36:39 | Mar 9th, 2018

When the army brutally dispersed Red Shirts protestors in Bangkok’s busy commercial district in May 2010, motorcycle taxi drivers emerged as a key force, capable of playing cat-and-mouse with security forces, evading military checkpoints, and rescuin...Show More

1:08:22 | Mar 8th, 2018

In Sufis, Salafis and Islamists: The Contested Grounds of British Islamic Activism (I.B. Tauris, 2016), Sadek Hamid explores the contours of “Islamic activism”—and indeed the meaning of this key term—in the context of the UK. Despite the specific foc...Show More

27:16 | Mar 8th, 2018

In The Authority Trap: Strategic Choices of International NGOs (Cornell University Press, 2017), Sarah S. Stroup and Wendy H. Wong argue that a small set of international nongovernmental organizations (INGOs) have acquired an unusually large amount o...Show More

1:04:09 | Mar 7th, 2018

Aidan Smith has written a timely and important analysis of the way that we understand images, masculinity, and femininity, especially through the lens of presidential campaigns and political advertising. Smith’s book, Gender, Heteronormativity, and t...Show More

24:19 | Mar 5th, 2018

When first enacted at the start of the twentieth century, primaries were to decrease the power of party bosses to dominate the choice of who ran for office. Primaries were a feature of the progressive agenda to limit political corruption and democrat...Show More

44:33 | Feb 28th, 2018

American Cicero: Mario Cuomo and the Defense of American Liberalism (Oxford University Press, 2017) is a compelling exploration of the political life of Governor Mario Cuomo as well as the concepts of American liberalism, presidential politics, our u...Show More

22:39 | Feb 26th, 2018

In the last few weeks, minimum wage workers in 18 states saw their wages go up; in Maine a full dollar increase. Why states have taken the lead on raising the minimum wage is the topic of the new book from Christopher Witko and William Franko, The Ne...Show More

38:24 | Feb 21st, 2018

Investigating the President: Congressional Checks on Presidential Power (Princeton University Press, 2016) is an important analysis of both congressional and presidential power, and how these two branches interact, especially within polarized politic...Show More

57:21 | Feb 20th, 2018

Marie Griffith‘s new book Moral Combat: How Sex Divided American Christians and Fractured American Politics (Basic Books, 2017) offers a portrait of how religious views regarding sexuality became entangled with multiple political debates including th...Show More

24:55 | Feb 19th, 2018

At the start of Populism: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2017), five different, and competing, approaches to populism. It has been used to describe those on the left and the right, those in power and those seeking out power. Into...Show More

21:32 | Feb 12th, 2018

Do we live in a country of red and blue states or something more purple-ish? The red state/blue state meme of 2000 has really never gone away, and scholarly debate, as well as frequent media attention, has argued for its merits and demerits. Are we a...Show More

42:29 | Feb 6th, 2018

AIDS is one of the primary causes of death in Africa. Of the more than 24 million Africans infected with HIV, only about 54% have access to the treatment that they need. Despite the progress made in mitigating this disease in the global north, unfort...Show More

48:30 | Feb 5th, 2018

Boko Haram is one of the most well known global terrorist organizations. They have killed thousands of people and displaced millions of West Africans. While widespread journalistic reporting on the group tries to keep up with their activities, few ha...Show More

24:12 | Feb 5th, 2018

In our hyper polarized world, it is easy to assume that this is a natural state of being, the result of natural shifts in politics. In Sam Rosenfeld‘s new book, The Polarizers: Postwar Architects of Our Partisan Era (University of Chicago Press, 2018...Show More

41:30 | Jan 29th, 2018

Emily C. Nacol has written a fascinating interrogation of the idea of risk, the concept of vulnerability, and the evolution of probabilistic thinking as conceived of and explored by four of the preeminent British thinkers of the seventeenth and eight...Show More

26:08 | Jan 22nd, 2018

Prior to the wave of protests in 2017 supporting immigrants in the US, there were the protests of 2006. That spring, millions of Latinos and other immigrants across the country opposed Congressional action hostile to immigrants. These protesters part...Show More

45:40 | Jan 19th, 2018

The Age of Lone Wolf Terrorism (Columbia University Press, 2017), by Mark S. Hamm and Ramon Spaaij, identifies patterns among individuals that commit acts of terror outside of a group or network. Hamm and Spaaij follow these individuals, commonly cal...Show More

49:54 | Jan 15th, 2018

Gregory Laski approaches the concept of democracy in his text, Untimely Democracy: The Politics of Progress after Slavery (Oxford University Press, 2018) from a variety of dimensions and perspectives, integrating the concept of temporality to conside...Show More

1:06:16 | Jan 8th, 2018

The Sovereignty Wars: Reconciling America with the World (Brookings Institution Press, 2017) is an important and in depth study of American interaction with the intricate concept of Sovereignty, from the Founding Fathers to Donald Trump. Stewart Patr...Show More

19:46 | Jan 7th, 2018

In the wake of the Alabama Senate election in December, 2017, attention has been drawn to the intersection of religion and politics. This is the subject of God at the Grassroots 2016: The Christian Right in American Politics (Rowman and Littlefield, ...Show More

24:42 | Jan 1st, 2018

Much attention has been drawn to the role of white women in the recent Alabama senate election and the earlier election of Donald J. Trump as president. Today’s racial and gender politics have long historic roots, according to Elizabeth McRae, the au...Show More

45:32 | Dec 30th, 2017

The Transparency Fix: Secrets, Leaks, and Uncontrollable Government Information (Stanford University Press, 2017) dispels the myth that transparency of information will result in a perfect government. Dr. Mark Fenster discusses the motivations of tra...Show More

22:14 | Dec 25th, 2017

We end the year by remembering our favorite authors, books, and some of the titles. There were so many great books written this year that we had the fun of reading and talking to a few of the authors. Weve both been doing a lot of grading, so left ou...Show More

55:40 | Dec 24th, 2017

What is it about Black Republicans that makes them fodder for comedy? How do Black Republicans view their participation in their political group? Corey D. Fields answers these questions and more in his new book, Black Elephants in the Room: The Unexp...Show More

19:49 | Dec 22nd, 2017

In 1976, the US Supreme Court ruled in Gregg v. Georgia that the death penalty was constitutional if it complied with certain provisions designed to ensure that it was reserved for the ‘worst of the worst.’ The 1976 decision ushered in the ‘modern’ p...Show More

1:05:20 | Dec 22nd, 2017

Catapulted into the Oval Office by an unusual set of circumstances, Gerald Ford remains a unique figure in American presidential history. In Ambition, Pragmatism, and Party: A Political Biography of Gerald R. Ford (University Press of Kansas, 2017), ...Show More

59:08 | Dec 18th, 2017

Melanee Thomas and Amanda Bittner have assembled a fascinating and important exploration of the role, understanding, and perceptions of mothers and motherhood within the realm of politics. Mothers and Others: The Role of Parenthood in Politics (Unive...Show More

37:05 | Dec 18th, 2017

In Jews and Leftist Politics: Judaism, Israel, Antisemitism and Gender (Cambridge University Press, 2017), Jack Jacobs, Professor of Political Science at John Jay College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York, has assembled a hugely im...Show More

44:21 | Dec 18th, 2017

Today we talked with Hilary Matfess about her new book Women and the War on Boko Haram: Wives, Weapons, Witnesses, just recently published by Zed Books in 2017. Drawn from her extensive research and interviews from 2015 to 2017, Matfess’ book attempt...Show More

35:36 | Dec 13th, 2017

In From Oligarchy to Republicanism: The Great Task of Reconstruction (University of Missouri Press, 2017) , Forrest Nabors sets out to show that congressional Republicans regarded the work of Reconstruction in the same way they regarded the work of t...Show More

24:28 | Dec 11th, 2017

Kevan Harris is the author of A Social Revolution: Politics and the Welfare State in Iran (University of California Press, 2017). Harris is assistant professor of sociology at the University of California, Los Angeles. Much scholarship has focused on...Show More

55:29 | Dec 11th, 2017

Colleen Murphy’s new book, The Conceptual Foundations of Transitional Justice (Cambridge University Press, 2017), argues that attaining some degree of justice is possible in nations transitioning to democratic states. There are many historical instan...Show More

1:08:27 | Dec 7th, 2017

The idea of being a “political prisoner” may seem timeless. If someone was imprisoned for his or her political beliefs, then that person is in some sense a “political prisoner.” Think of the Tower of London and its various occupants. But, as Padraic ...Show More

1:03:51 | Nov 30th, 2017

Catherine Zuckert‘s new book, Machiavelli’s Politics (University of Chicago Press, 2017), systematically analyzes all the texts that Machiavelli wrote, exploring each text individually, but also as part of Machiavelli’s more expansive teaching as a p...Show More