Book reviews

Book Review | Twilight of the Elites: Prosperity, The Periphery and the Future of France by Christophe Guilluy

Book Review | Twilight of the Elites: Prosperity, The Periphery and the Future of France by Christophe Guilluy

In Twilight of the Elites: Prosperity, The Periphery and the Future of France, Christophe Guilluy sets out the predicament of the ‘left-behind’ regions of France and excoriates the elites that have presided over their decline. While Guilluy does make a novel set of claims about the working-class response to recent political developments, peripheral France requires a more granular analysis than that found in this book, writes John Tomaney, which offers polemic over convincing scholarship.

Book Review | Citizens of Nowhere: How Europe can be Saved from Itself by Lorenzo Marsili and Niccolo Milanese

Book Review | Citizens of Nowhere: How Europe can be Saved from Itself by Lorenzo Marsili and Niccolo Milanese

In Citizens of Nowhere: How Europe can be Saved from Itself, Lorenzo Marsili and Niccolo Milanese offer an innovative look at citizenship, grounded in the development of a transnational civil society sphere across Europe. This is an ambitious, perceptive and clear-sighted argument for a transnational citizenship and politics, writes Ben Margulies, that also details the political project required to make this a reality.

Book Review | Stretching the Constitution: The Brexit Shock in Historic Perspective by Andrew Blick

Book Review | Stretching the Constitution: The Brexit Shock in Historic Perspective by Andrew Blick

In Stretching the Constitution: The Brexit Shock in Historic Perspective, Andrew Blicksituates Brexit within the wider context of UK constitutional reform debates over the course of the past century. Blick’s unconventional approach to this topic is insightful, providing instructive historical context to contemporary discussions of Brexit that will be of particular value for scholars of constitutional affairs, writes Gary Wilson.

Book Review | Engines of Privilege: Britain’s Private School Problem by Francis Green and David Kynaston

Book Review | Engines of Privilege: Britain’s Private School Problem by Francis Green and David Kynaston

In Engines of Privilege: Britain’s Private School Problem, Francis Green and David Kynaston critically explore the issues surrounding private schooling in Britain and the possible avenues through which these can be solved through government policy. This is a highly valuable contribution to debates surrounding education and inequality in the UK, writes Ross Goldstone, providing evidence-based and thoughtful consideration of how the private school problem may be solved for the betterment of society.

Book Review | Heroes or Villains? The Blair Government Reconsidered by Jon Davis and John Rentoul

Book Review | Heroes or Villains? The Blair Government Reconsidered by Jon Davis and John Rentoul

In Heroes or Villains? The Blair Government Reconsidered, Jon Davis and John Rentoul seek to counter the negative prevailing view of Tony Blair and the New Labour government, focusing on key areas of criticism. This is a fascinating study packed with first-hand accounts and primary sources, writes Robert Ledger, and is a vital addition to the literature on the Blair government and the wider New Labour project. 

Book Review | The Populist Radical Left in Europe edited by Giorgios Katsambekis and Alexandros Kioupkiolis

Book Review | The Populist Radical Left in Europe edited by Giorgios Katsambekis and Alexandros Kioupkiolis

In The Populist Radical Left in Europe, editors Giorgios Katsambekis and Alexandros Kioupkiolis bring together contributors to explore populist radical left movements across Europe, discussing examples including Greece’s Syriza, Spain’s Podemos, Slovenia’s Left Party, France’s France Insoumise and Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour, among others. This is an engaging and engaged work of political science, writes Anton Jäger, that provides a necessary moment of reflection on what left populism means, stands for and aims to achieve. 

Book Review | Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism by Safiya Umoja Noble

Book Review | Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism by Safiya Umoja Noble

In Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism, Safiya Umoja Noble draws on her research into algorithms and bias to show how online search results are far from neutral, but instead replicate and reinforce racist and sexist beliefs that reverberate in the societies in which search engines operate. This timely and important book sheds light on the ways that search engines impact on our modes of understanding, knowing and relating, writes Helen Kara.

Book Review | A Lot of People Are Saying: The New Conspiracism and the Assault on Democracy by Russell Muirhead and Nancy L. Rosenblum

Book Review | A Lot of People Are Saying: The New Conspiracism and the Assault on Democracy by Russell Muirhead and Nancy L. Rosenblum

In A Lot of People Are Saying: The New Conspiracism and the Assault on Democracy, Russell Muirhead and Nancy L. Rosenblum identify and outline the emergence of a new type of conspiracist thinking in our contemporary moment, showing it to pose a fundamental threat to democratic functioning. While questioning whether the book ascribes too much intentionality to those engaging in ‘the new conspiracism’, this is nonetheless a timely and important conceptualisation, writes Ignas Kalpokas. 

Book Review | Posh Boys: How the English Public Schools Ruin Britain by Robert Verkaik

Book Review | Posh Boys: How the English Public Schools Ruin Britain by Robert Verkaik

In Posh Boys: How the English Public Schools Ruin Britain, Robert Verkaik explores the role that public schooling plays in reproducing inequality in Britain, showing how public schools enable wealthy families to pass down their privilege to their children who subsequently have greater access to the most lucrative and powerful areas of British society. Grounded in statistical evidence, this is a valuable contribution to debates surrounding social mobility in the UK, writes Ross Goldstone.

Book Review | The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties by Paul Collier

Book Review | The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties by Paul Collier

In The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties, Paul Collier offers a forthright discussion of capitalism today that seeks to diagnosis and propose remedies for the anxieties shaping divisions between families, cities and nations. Staying away from clichés, ideology or populism, Collier calls our attention to pragmatism and the ‘hard centre’, and he is impressive in doing so in this notable book, writes Mehmet Emin Bayram.