Current Affairs Book Reviews (page 5)

POLARIZED by James E. Campbell
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 1, 2016

"A painstakingly methodical, exhausting process to conclude that there is really nothing to worry about."
A study of an American public grown more ideologically conflicted since the 1960s and why—or whether—it matters. Read full book review >
LOVING AND LEAVING WASHINGTON by John Yochelson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 1, 2016

"A quiet but compelling case for working in policy research and advocacy."
A dedicated public servant recounts his bicoastal career working in European security, economic policy, education, and other arenas. Read full book review >

SHIFTING SANDS by Raja Shahadeh
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 29, 2016

"An accessible collection in which the editors and the contributors don't shirk from delivering necessary criticism but offer possibilities of hope for a troubled region."
This compilation by diverse writers lends nuanced insight into the complicated, volatile Middle East. Read full book review >
WATER IN PLAIN SIGHT by Judith D. Schwartz
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 26, 2016

"Some demanding passages require perseverance on the part of general readers, but the stories that surround them are important and rewarding."
The bad news is that the world's water, carbon, and energy cycles are out of whack; the good news is that solutions to these problems are within reach. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 22, 2016

"An elucidating, nuanced study of gender and feminist dynamics perfect for our current political moment."
A timely study of gender and media that reaches back before the present American election to earlier delineations of white manhood and presidential power. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 19, 2016

"The book reads like an extended game of Trivial Pursuit, featuring some who play very well and many more who play very poorly."
The story of the dumbing-down of the American brain, as we have all become increasingly dependent on letting our computers think for us. Read full book review >
THE END OF WHITE CHRISTIAN AMERICA by Robert P. Jones
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 12, 2016

"A missed opportunity to explore an important cultural change in the making."
A pundit considers the decline of Christian religious influence on American politics and culture. Read full book review >
HOW THE WORLD BREAKS by Stan Cox
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 12, 2016

"Though short on a clear thesis, the book is strong on examples of human adaptation in the face of catastrophe."
A frightening, from-the-trenches overview of "natural" and man-made disasters—and responses to them—across the globe. Read full book review >
BRAZILLIONAIRES by Alex Cuadros
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: July 12, 2016

"Well-rounded and -researched portraits of the staggering chasm between rich and poor in Brazil."
On the trail of enormous wealth in Brazil—an engine of national progress or a trench of impoverishment? Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 12, 2016

"A breezy, informative profile on foreign service that serves as an inviting primer for prospective diplomats and their admirers."
A career diplomat uses embassy cables to describe the complex lives of foreign service officers. Read full book review >
ALMIGHTY by Dan Zak
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 12, 2016

"A scrupulously reported, gracefully told, exquisitely paced debut."
Centering on a single episode, a powerful declaration of conscience,a Washington Post reporter tells an intensely unsettling story about living with our nuclear arsenal. Read full book review >
BLUFF by Anjum Hoda
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: July 12, 2016

"Sound post-Keynesian economic reasoning well argued—a book that one hopes, against the odds, the heads of the Federal Reserve and the Bank of England will entertain."
A financial cri de coeur from a banking insider. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jeff Chang
September 20, 2016

In the provocative essays in journalist Jeff Chang’s new book We Gon’ Be Alright, Chang takes an incisive and wide-ranging look at the recent tragedies and widespread protests that have shaken the country. Through deep reporting with key activists and thinkers, personal writing, and cultural criticism, We Gon’ Be Alright links #BlackLivesMatter to #OscarsSoWhite, Ferguson to Washington D.C., the Great Migration to resurgent nativism. Chang explores the rise and fall of the idea of “diversity,” the roots of student protest, changing ideas about Asian Americanness, and the impact of a century of racial separation in housing. “He implores readers to listen, act, and become involved with today’s activists, who offer ‘new ways to see our past and our present,’ ” our reviewer writes in a starred review. “A compelling and intellectually thought-provoking exploration of the quagmire of race relations.” View video >