Category Archives: Reviews

Review of Andrea Levy, Small Island

Levy’s choice of title is an important indication of the themes of her novel. During the Second World War, the people of Britain became more aware that they inhabited a ‘small island,’ as their vulnerability to invasion was exposed at the same time the British Empire began to retract. In the Caribbean, the expression ‘small […]

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Review of Christos Tsiolkas, Dead Europe

Vintage, 2005, reviewed by Humphrey McQueen A spectre is haunting Dead Europe – the spectre of post-Communism. Post-Communism isn’t the only ghost in this, the third fiction by the Greek-Australian writer Christos Tsiolkas. His new novel implies that after the breaching of the Berlin Wall, all manner of ghouls were let loose, taking flight with […]

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The Stepmother World: On Herman Melville

Cesare Casarino, Modernity at Sea: Melville, Marx, Conrad in Crisis, University of Minnesota, paper, 272 pages, $22.95 Hershel Parker, Herman Melville: A Biography, Vol. 2, 1851-1892, John Hopkins University Press, hardcover, 1056 pages with 63 halftones, $45 In the spring of 1851, Chief Justice Lemuel Shaw of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts ordered a seventeen-year-old […]

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Between Metaphor and Referent: Reading Saramago's "Blindness"

Jose Saramago, Blindness, Harvest Books, paperback, 327 pages, $14 Jose Saramago received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1998. Although several of his books were available in English translation, not many people in the United States had read his novels prior to the award. Soon his latest novel, Blindness, was on the New York Times […]

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War Plan Iraq: Ten Reasons Against the War with Iraq

Milan Rai, War Plan Iraq: Ten Reasons Against the War with Iraq (New York: W. W. Norton, 2002). Since the first months following the destruction of the World Trade Center; George W. Bush has been pounding on his war drums with a force that resonates throughout international politics, destabilizing US relations with the United Nations. […]

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Confronting the Tourist Vision

John Urry, The Tourist Gaze. Second Edition.Thousand Oaks, California: Sage, 2002; Mark Gottdeiner, The Theming of America: American Dreams Media Fantasies and Themed Environments, Boulder, Colorado: Westview Press, 2001; Dennis R. Judd and Susan S. Fainstein (Editors), The Tourist City, New Haven, CT : Yale University Press, 1999; Dean MacCannell, The Tourist: A New Theory […]

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Subverting Hatred: The Challenge of Nonviolence in Religious Traditions

Daniel L. Smith-Christopher (ed.), Subverting Hatred: The Challenge of Nonviolence in Religious Traditions (New York, Orbis Books, 1997). In Subverting Hatred: The Challenge of Nonviolence in Religious Traditions, editor Daniel L. Smith-Christopher has assembled an excellent array of contributors whose provocative and balanced chapters are all written at a high level. Normally, edited volumes contain […]

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The Many-Headed Hydra

Marcus Rediker and Peter Linebaugh, The Many-Headed Hydra (Boston: Beacon Press, 2001). Like many important things in our lives these days I have had to repeatedly revisit and reconsider Linebaugh’s and Rediker’s history of the beginnings of the British Transatlantic empire and the resistances that arose in response to the ordering processes of early global […]

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Heidegger's Temporal Idealism

William Blattner, Heidegger’s Temporal Idealism (Cambridge: Campbridge UP, 2005). Temporal Reckoning for the Political Being Every political methodology must presuppose some relation to the past, present, and future. Even if it is a mode of forgetting or sequestering, a disavowed relation is still a relation. The imperative thing that must be recognized is how different […]

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Shadows of Tender Fury

Shadows of Tender Fury, Frank Bardacke (ed.), MOnthly Review Press, 1995. A Brief Critique of EZLN Ends These are the questions that come to mind when I consider the laudatory reception the EZLN has received from the American Left: Does anybody on The Left want to be victorious anymore? Does anybody on The Left find […]

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