Category Archives: Books

Book Review: David Torrance – The Battle for Britain

In 1995, George Robertson, Labour shadow secretary for Scotland, predicted that ‘Devolution will kill Nationalism stone dead.’ In modern British political history few words have rung so hollow. This year, a decade and a half after a devolved Scottish parliament … Continue reading

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Book review – Austerity: A History of a Dangerous Idea

The discovery of an error in an academic economics paper – even one authored by a pair of Harvard dons – is hardly most people’s idea of a headline grabbing news story. But that’s exactly what happened, in April, when … Continue reading

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Book Review — The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America

On Monday, September 19, 1977, Lykes Corporation of New Orleans announced that, by the end of the week, it would close Campbell Works, the largest mill in the blue collar Ohio city of Youngstown. That day, which became known locally … Continue reading

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Book Review: The Oil Road

The Oil Road: Journeys from the Caspian Sea to the City of London by James Marriott and Mika Minio-Paluello. These are straitened times for BP. The oil giant faces a slew of civil and criminal suits arising from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill. In October, … Continue reading

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Book Review: Political Corruption in Ireland 1922-2010, by Elaine Byrne

As is the case with unhappy families, every corrupt state is corrupt in its own way: in Ireland, an entrenched, localized “parish pump” political system; weak regulation; devout deference to authority; and a predisposition to denigrate whistleblowers as “informers” all contributed to … Continue reading

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Junot Diaz — Dominican-American Psyche

Interview with American-Dominican novelist, appeared in the Sunday Business Post, September 2.  Growing up in 1970s New Jersey, Junot Diaz was a self-confessed ‘book slut’. The young Dominican immigrant — his family arrived in the United States when he was … Continue reading

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Book Review — How Much is Enough?

In 1928, the scion of 20th century British economics John Maynard Keynes addressed a room full of Cambridge undergraduates on the subject of ‘economic possibilities for our grandchildren’. Keynes – a far more radical thinker than contemporary caricatures of him as … Continue reading

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Book Review: The Boxer and the Goalkeeper by Andy Martin

In December 1946, the French polymath and bon vivant Boris Vian, and his wife, threw a soirée in their Paris apartment. It was a boozy, bawdry affair, an intentional throwback to the all-night parties that raged in Occupied Paris. In one corner sat phenomenologist … Continue reading

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Book Review: Sightlines by Kathleen Jamie.

‘Keep looking, even when there’s nothing much to see,’ Scottish writer Kathleen Jamie cautions, midway through this delicate, thoughtful collection of essays. ‘That way your eye learns what’s common, so when the uncommon appears, your eye will tell you.’ Jamie, … Continue reading

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Book Review: David Harvey – Rebel Cities

Last January 25, over 50,000 people occupied in Tahrir Square in downtown Cairo, in protest at the regime of Hosni Mubarak. Less than a week later, the number of protestors in the square and surrounding streets had swelled to more … Continue reading

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