A remarkably concise, perspicacious introduction to the corporation’s past and future.

THE CORPORATION

An incisive history of corporations coupled with a prognosis of their future.

According to authors Sarokin and Schulkin, corporations tend to be viewed contradictorily, both as catalysts of economic growth and ingenuity as well as corrupt drivers of inequality and wielders of undemocratic political influence. In order to properly understand the vices and virtues of corporations, the authors synoptically but rigorously reconstruct their long history, which dates back, at least in embryonic form, to the Roman Empire. However, the corporation as we now understand it, a “group of individuals acting as a single entity, and recognized as such under the law,” begins to emerge in 16th- and 17th-century Europe in the form of massive trading companies like the Dutch West India Company. Everything changed, though, when the United States was founded since its unique constitutional structure and entrepreneurial energy contributed to the explosive proliferation of the corporation through the 19th and 20th centuries. The authors deftly chronicle not only the evolving character of the American corporation, but also the nation’s shifting sentiments regarding it, including a thoughtful account of the regulatory backlash against the corporation during the Progressive Era and the tumultuous 1970s. Sarokin and Schulkin also furnish a convincing vision of the future corporation’s challenges, including globalization and the profound transformations wrought by the unstoppable march of technological innovation. Their prose is unfailingly lucid, and they avoid any peremptory dogmatism, carefully assessing the corporation’s pros and cons. “None of these institutions are perfectly angelic and none of them are unredeemably evil. Nor should we expect them to be. Corporations—like governments, like organized religion—are composed of human beings who bring to them all the promise and all the foibles that humanity possesses.” This is a timely contribution to an important issue, as philosophically attentive to the big picture as it is to the granular details of law and policy.

A remarkably concise, perspicacious introduction to the corporation’s past and future.

Pub Date: June 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5275-4868-8

Page Count: 180

Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Review Posted Online: Sept. 10, 2020

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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A concise personal and scholarly history that avoids academic jargon as it illuminates emotional truths.

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ON JUNETEENTH

The Harvard historian and Texas native demonstrates what the holiday means to her and to the rest of the nation.

Initially celebrated primarily by Black Texans, Juneteenth refers to June 19, 1865, when a Union general arrived in Galveston to proclaim the end of slavery with the defeat of the Confederacy. If only history were that simple. In her latest, Gordon-Reed, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Award, Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, and numerous other honors, describes how Whites raged and committed violence against celebratory Blacks as racism in Texas and across the country continued to spread through segregation, Jim Crow laws, and separate-but-equal rationalizations. As Gordon-Reed amply shows in this smooth combination of memoir, essay, and history, such racism is by no means a thing of the past, even as Juneteenth has come to be celebrated by all of Texas and throughout the U.S. The Galveston announcement, notes the author, came well after the Emancipation Proclamation but before the ratification of the 13th Amendment. Though Gordon-Reed writes fondly of her native state, especially the strong familial ties and sense of community, she acknowledges her challenges as a woman of color in a state where “the image of Texas has a gender and a race: “Texas is a White man.” The author astutely explores “what that means for everyone who lives in Texas and is not a White man.” With all of its diversity and geographic expanse, Texas also has a singular history—as part of Mexico, as its own republic from 1836 to 1846, and as a place that “has connections to people of African descent that go back centuries.” All of this provides context for the uniqueness of this historical moment, which Gordon-Reed explores with her characteristic rigor and insight.

A concise personal and scholarly history that avoids academic jargon as it illuminates emotional truths.

Pub Date: May 4, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-63149-883-1

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Liveright/Norton

Review Posted Online: Feb. 24, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2021

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