In 1990 Robert Gellately completed a major study which investigated the role of the secret police in Nazi Germany. His book, The Gestapo and German Society: Enforcing Racial Policy 1933-1945 (Oxford University Press; Oxford, 1995) demonstrated conclusively that the much feared and allegedly omnipresent Gestapo in fact relied on widespread public support to function effectively.
This volume is the second published in the Yale University Press series, The New Economic History of Britain. The New Economic History will eventually provide a continuum of scholarly surveys of the British economy from early times to the present, but in a more accessible form: that is, without the usual impedimenta of footnotes or endnotes and with an eye to a less specialist reading market.
This book would have been a valuable addition to the historical literature on the English Reformation at any time, but its publication now is particularly timely, as the Reformation debate begins to focus on early English Protestantism with a set of questions previously unasked.
‘The poetry in history lies in the quasi-miraculous fact that once on this earth, on this familiar spot of ground walked other men and women as actual as we are today, thinking their thoughts, swayed by their own passions, but now all gone, vanishing after another, gone as utterly as we ourselves shall be, gone like ghost at cock-crow’.(1)
Quite a lot of work on the history of marriage is based on assumptions that reflect the authors' views about contemporary society: either that marriage is necessary for an ordered society and that anything that strengthens it is good, or that marriage is oppressive to women.
Birthing the Nation represents history of medicine at its most inclusive. Born itself from the author's doctoral work on the history of midwifery, this book is an insightful and hard-hitting examination of how men-midwives and questions of reproduction more generally intersected with national identities and scientific knowledge.
Peter Barham's book is an excellent example of 'underdog' history. Barham has trawled the archives in search of the lives and experiences of ordinary soldiers who suffered mental crises during the Great War.
International historians have been waiting a long time for this book. Their anticipation of the volume is testimony to the esteem with which Zara Steiner’s contribution to the field is held.