Current Affairs Book Reviews (page 497)

BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"Mainly for students and policy wonks."
A pointed reinterpretation of the history of antipoverty policy, arguing that racism most explains why our welfare state is feeble compared with other industrialized nations. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"A good yarn with an appealing protagonist that inspires sadness for the Peruvian people and much distaste for their government. (8 pages b&w photos)"
A memorable report of a monthlong 1992 expedition to Peru, featuring daring, drugs, and despotism. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"Japan."
A decidedly schizophrenic examination of changing attitudes towards work, family, and the status of women in modern Japan. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"Until we know whether and how Hanan Ashrawi will contribute to the humanitarian nature of a possible Palestinian state, any biography of her, particularly one as lacking in historical and biographical depth as Victor's, is premature."
A superficial, unreliable profile of the PLO's often articulate, photogenic spokesperson during part of the Intifada, and particularly during the Madrid and Washington negotiations with Israel (199193). Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"Steele is better on contemporary events than on history, and better on politics than on society at large, but his deep knowledge of Russia over the last three decades gives his conclusions great and worrisome authority."
An informed and gloomy appraisal of the prospects for democracy in Russia from the longtime Moscow corespondent of the (Manchester) Guardian, who concludes that the present political system may be one of the many revolutions from above in Russian history that end in failure. Read full book review >

THE ANTI-EGOTIST by Paul Fussell
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"Despite the oddities in diction and tone, Fussell is the perfect match for his subject — witty, thoughtful, brief, and, not least of it, accurate."
Fussell (Bad, 1991, etc.) certainly has come a long way from his early work as a conventional literary scholar. Read full book review >
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Aug. 31, 1994

"Kaufman comes across as a blend of science fetishist, free- market wonk, and immense sour grape—his good points sadly lost in the blather."
In classic jilted-lover style, former environmental activist Kaufman (The Beaches Are Moving, 1979) levels some sharp and deserving criticisms at the environmental movement, but loses credibility when he just can't find one good word for his former partner. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 23, 1994

"By turns wry, witty, sometimes wise, but resolutely outspoken, this volume brings father and daughter face to face as people, not icons in a Freudian myth."
Masquerading as a report on home schooling, a tale of father- daughter conflict played out over eighth-grade English and math. Read full book review >
TRUE NORTH by Jill Ker Conway
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 22, 1994

"Irishman's way with a story'') as a substitute for the harder work of portraying individual characters. (First printing of 60,000; Book-of-the-Month Club alternate selection; author tour)"
In this memoir Conway picks up where she left off in Road From Coorain (1989). Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 8, 1994

"Still, she helps us understand much of the posturing that passes for drug policy rhetoric."
A wide-ranging critique of anti-drug policies that focuses on the ``shadow agendas'' behind ``politically obligatory `get tough' postures.'' Though Gordon (Political Science/City College, CUNY) could use some journalistic detail to animate her academic style, she makes some important basic points, noting that we blame drugs for larger social problems and often ignore the damage caused by alcohol and tobacco. Read full book review >
DEAD RIGHT by David Frum
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 3, 1994

"A clear guide to the current fault lines in American conservatism by an author who laments that the conservative revival has stalled."
A young tory's unsparing critique of political conservatism in the US and the divisive shambles its putative partisans have made of their cause. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 3, 1994

"A valuable chronicle of the 20th century's most crucial debates, culled from the pages of one of our most influential periodicals."
Nearly 100 passionate, often confrontational essays and editorials from the first 80 years of the New Republic. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jennifer Keishin Armstrong
author of SEINFELDIA
August 22, 2016

Jennifer Keishin Armstrong’s new bestseller Seinfeldia is the hilarious behind-the-scenes story of two guys who went out for coffee and dreamed up Seinfeld —the cultural sensation that changed television and bled into the real world. Comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld never thought anyone would watch their silly little sitcom about a New York comedian sitting around talking to his friends. NBC executives didn’t think anyone would watch either, but they bought it anyway, hiding it away in the TV dead zone of summer. But against all odds, viewers began to watch, first a few and then many, until nine years later nearly 40 million Americans were tuning in weekly. In Seinfeldia, TV historian and entertainment writer Armstrong celebrates the creators and fans of this American television phenomenon, bringing readers behind-the-scenes of the show while it was on the air and into the world of devotees for whom it never stopped being relevant, a world where the Soup Nazi still spends his days saying “No soup for you!” “Armstrong’s intimate, breezy history is full of gossipy details, show trivia, and insights into how famous episodes came to be,” our reviewer writes. “Perfect for Seinfeldians and newcomers alike.” View video >