Monday, 1 February 2010

New books for February

On the Spartacus Road: A Spectacular Journey through Ancient Italy, Peter Strothard (Harper Press)
An account of the author’s journey along the 2,000-mile Spartacus Road, the same route along which an army of slaves marched and outfought the military forces of the Roman Empire between 73 and 71BC.

Who Was Jacques Derrida?, David Mikics (Yale University Press)
An intellectual biography of Jacques Derrida, a full-scale appraisal of his career, his influence and his philosophical sources, and the first attempt to define his crucial importance as the purveyor of ‘theory’, the phenomenon that has had a profound influence on academic life in the humanities.

The Cognitive Challenge of War: Prussia 1806, Peter Paret (Princeton University Press)
This study of Napoleon’s victory over Prussia in 1806 and Prussia’s subsequent efforts to recover from defeat reveals how, in one particular historical episode, operational analyses together with institutional and political decisions turned defeat to victory.

The Anatomy Murders, Lisa Rosner (University of Pennsylvania Press)
In 1828, William Burke and William Hare were accused of killing 16 people over the course of 12 months in order to sell their corpses as ‘subjects’ for dissection. This study places their story in the context of the social and cultural forces that were bringing early 19th-century Britain into modernity.

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