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Beauchamp kills Sharp

Pieter Spierenburg on Violence and Punishment

“Pieter Spierenburg is one of the world’s experts on the history of violent crime, and his writings are filled with fascinating facts and thought-provoking insights.” Steven Pinker, Harvard University Pieter Spierenburg is professor of historical criminology at Erasmus University, Rotterdam. In 2008 Polity published his History of Murder: Personal Violence in Europe from the Middle […]

Continue Reading · 10 December 2012 · anthropology, history and politics, podcasts, social sciences
Eva Illouz - Why Love Hurts cover

Eva Illouz on Why Love Hurts

“The grand ambition of this book is to do to emotions – at least to romantic love – what Marx did to commodities: to show that they are shaped by social relations; that they do not circulate in a free and unconstrained way; that their magic is social; and that they contain and condense the […]

Continue Reading · 2 July 2012 · podcasts, social sciences, video
Eli Zaretsky Why America Needs a Left

Eli Zaretsky: Why America Needs a Left

The United States today cries out for a robust, self-respecting, intellectually sophisticated left, yet the very idea of a left appears to have been discredited. In this brilliant new book, Eli Zaretsky rethinks the idea by examining three key moments in American history: the Civil War, the New Deal and the range of New Left […]

Continue Reading · 2 July 2012 · history and politics, podcasts, social sciences
Merchants of Culture second edition

Merchants of Culture – new edition for a changing industry

When John Thompson‘s Merchants of Culture appeared in the summer of 2010, it was the first serious study of the publishing industry in many years. Thompson compared himself to an anthropologist studying his subjects in order to explain a field of human activity that strikes many outsiders as baffling and often irrational. The industry recognized […]

Continue Reading · 9 May 2012 · economics, podcasts, social sciences, technology and communication
Daniel Miller Consumption and its Consequences

Consumption and its consequences: “rethinking our relationship to the material world”

My guest in this programme is Professor of Material Culture at UCL, Daniel Miller. Daniel appeared in an earlier Polity Books podcast to talk about his previous book, Tales from Facebook, which looked at how people really use Facebook as a form of social interaction, as opposed to how media commentators would have us think […]

Continue Reading · 27 March 2012 · economics, podcasts, social sciences
Beckett and Ball Wikileaks

Wikileaks – “significant, symptomatic but not game-changing”?

WikiLeaks is the most challenging journalistic phenomenon to have emerged in the digital era. It has provoked anger and enthusiasm in equal measure from across the political and journalistic spectrum. Its use of new technologies and its methods of disseminating information raise profound questions about the role of journalism and its future in the contemporary […]

Continue Reading · 15 March 2012 · podcasts, social sciences
Ash Amin, Land of Strangers

Ash Amin on Land of Strangers

“I wanted to look for a politics for the stranger, and of the stranger, which didn’t require of strangers to become friends with each other or with the host community. I felt that that kind of politics was just too narrow and impossible quite frankly in a very cosmopolitan age.” My guest in this podcast […]

Continue Reading · 20 February 2012 · podcasts, social sciences

Polity podcasts: John Urry – Climate Change and Society

John Urry is Distinguished Professor of Sociology at Lancaster University. His many publications include Sociology Beyond Society and After the Car. I met him recently in Lancaster to talk to him about his latest book, Climate Change and Society, which explores the significance of human behaviour for understanding the causes and impacts of changing climates […]

Continue Reading · 1 September 2011 · podcasts, social sciences

Tales from Facebook III

Here’s a transcript of a recent interview I did with Daniel Miller about his new book, Tales from Facebook, for Polity. (If you would prefer to listen to the interview, you will find it here.) George Miller: Hello and welcome to this, the fifth in a series of podcasts from Polity. My name is George […]

Continue Reading · 6 May 2011 · anthropology, podcasts, social sciences