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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: 
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.

Review Date: 
14 Nov 2013

Electromagnetism, photographic reproduction, grand operas, phantasmagorias, automatons and socialist utopias: what do these have in common? According to John Tresch, they were all manifestations of a common ‘mechanical romanticism’ that permeated Paris between the fall of the first Napoleon in 1815 and the triumph of his nephew Napoleon III in 1851.

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