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Sep 23, 2004 4:43 pm

Trade Books to Watch For!

If any reader would like to suggest additional books, please contact Murray Polner,

  • Peter Barham. Forgotten Lunatics of the Great War (Yale)
    Psychiatric casualties among enlisted men in the British army. Details their mental breakdowns, the harsh treatment often received, and how they coped on their postwar lives. Has much contemporary relevance, given the large number of similar casualties in Vietnam and now among veterans of the war in Iraq.

  • Richard Gott. Cuba: A New History (Yale)
    A British journalist casts a fresh eye on Cuba's past and present.

  • Charles A. Israel. Before Scopes: Evangelicalism, Education, and Evolution in Tennessee, 1870-1925 (Georgia)
    The first effort to study why the dramatic and divisive Scopes trial occurred where, and when, it did. Examines the dominant white evangelical Protestant views of education and religious faith.

  • 0leg V. Khlevniuk. The History of the Gulag: From Collectivism to the Great Terror (Yale)
    A Russian historian unearthed long suppressed documents and mined Soviet archives for this sweeping study of the Soviet labor camp prison system.

  • James W. Loewen. Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of Segregation in America (New Press)
    Racial segregation in the North.

  • Philip Short. Pol Pot: The History of the Killing Fields (Holt)
    “Chronicles the Cambodian genocide and the man at the head of this lethal experiment in social engineering.”

  • Athan Theoharis. The FBI & American Democracy (Kansas)
    0ne of America’s foremost scholars of the FBI, offers his views of the agency, warts and all.

  • Hans P. Vought. The Bully Pulpit & the Melting Pot (Mercer)
    An analysis of presidential attitudes toward immigration, from McKinley to Hoover.

  • Peter Charles Hoffer. Past Imperfect: Facts, Fictions, & Fraud in the Writing of Amerrican History (Public Affairs). A historian deals critically with well-known"plagiarizers and prevaricators,"(Bellesiles, Goodwin, Ambrose, Ellis), as Kirkus review put it. But the book also deals with our battling past,especially during eras of crisis.

  • Max Frankel. High Noon in the Cold War: Kennedy, Khrushchev & the Cuban Missile Crisis (Ballantine, 2004). The former Executive editor of the NY Times and it foreign correspondent,"portrays an embattled young American president--not jaunty and callow as widely believed, but increasingly calm and staesmanlike--confronting"an insecure, belligerent leader desperate to achieve credibility." The story of the most alarming crisis of the Cold War.

  • Jussi Hanhhimaki. The Flawed Architect: Henry Kissinger & American Foreign Policy (0xford, 2004) The Professor of International History and Politics at rhe Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, Switzerland, who edits the journal"Cold War History" offers what the publishers claim is the"first major biography" of Henry Kissinger.He relies in part on a recently declassified cache of Kissinger's 1970s phone conversations. Among the revelations: Kissinger"worked hard to get rid of Allende in Chile but did not play a direct role in his final downfall"; Nixon drunk during the 1973 war in the Middle East, etc. The author's conclusion-- that Kissinger was not a"war criminal" but rather a"flawed architect of foreign policy" may prove as controversial as Kissinger himself.

    Steven Mithen. After The Ice: A Global History, 20,000-5.000 B (Harvard, 2004) Mithen"set out to communicate to the general reader the totat effect of the end of the most recent Ice Age and, without compromising his scholarship, has succeeded." Since the people of those times left behind no written material,Mithen scrutinizes"the rubbish that people left behind--people whose names and identities will never be known" to write about their story.

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