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Review Date: 
16 Apr 2015

In the latest of our occasional Reviews in History podcast series, Dr Jordan Landes talks to Professor Jan Plamper about his new work on the history of emotions, a subject which he has memorably described as a 'rocket taking off'.

Jan Plamper is Professor of History at Goldsmiths, University of London.

Review Date: 
16 Apr 2015

The history of emotions, a rocket taking off according to Jan Plamper, seems to be screaming ‘know thyself!’ at psychology in all its various forms, but most specifically at neuroscience. The development of a hard science of emotions has involved, with every step ‘forward’, the forgetting of the previous step.

Review Date: 
30 Apr 2015

'Big’ technologies like the railways, the electric telegraph and the steamer seem to attract ‘big’ narratives of change. Many scholars have described their effects on the fabric of society and on everyday life as ‘revolutionary’.

Review Date: 
2 Oct 2014

Dr Chris A Williams undertakes an ambitious project in attempting to analytically discuss aspects of the development of a public institution over a 200-year period, within a publication limited to 242 pages.

Review Date: 
25 Sep 2014

Over the last 100 years, childbirth has become increasingly synonymous with the hospital. Around 1900, hospital births were the exception; within less than three generations, it was almost unheard of for women in most industrialised countries to have their babies anywhere else.

Review Date: 
11 Sep 2014

The London Zoological Society was founded in 1826 by Sir Stamford Raffles and Sir Humphrey Davy, emerging at a time when interest in collecting and displaying human and nonhuman fragments of the natural world was intensifying.

Review Date: 
18 Sep 2014

How can you know about somewhere you’ve never been? This predicament is at the heart of David Lambert’s superb new book, Mastering the Niger: James MacQueen’s African Geography and the Struggle over Atlantic Slavery. In 1841 the Scottish geographer and proslavery propagandist James MacQueen published A New Map of Africa. MacQueen had never visited the continent.

Review Date: 
7 Aug 2014

The modern state is defined by its capacity to classify and order its peoples, argues James Scott in his seminal Seeing Like a State. To do so, officials needed to count the population and estimate its future growth. Karl Ittmann explores the rise, fall, and frustrations of colonial demography in the 20th-century British Empire.

Review Date: 
14 Aug 2014

Two distinguished historians of biology make their return to the lists courtesy of the University of Chicago Press. Robert J. Richards' Was a Hitler a Darwinian? collects together some of the author's more recent papers; while Peter J.

Review Date: 
7 Aug 2014

I could say this is a story of two halves but I can’t bear football, so I won’t. Instead I will say that this book is both a narrative about the polio virus (particularly in America), its long history and the drive to treat and prevent it and it is a rich unfolding of the complex and messy tale of medical research.

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