Books & ideas Society International

Summertime, and Reading Is Easy
A Summer Selection

by The editorial team , 12 August 2019

Books & Ideas is going on holiday for the summer. We will be back with new publications starting August 26th. In the meantime, here is a selection of essays, interviews and reviews published over the past year.


Nathalie Sebbane, “Ireland’s Silences: the Magdalene Laundries
Thanks to the success of Peter Mullan’s film The Magdalene Sisters, Magdalene laundries—institutions meant to punish Ireland’s “fallen” women—are now part of the country’s collective memory. Despite tremendous social advances, survivors still await reparation and an official apology.
Read the essay→


Florent Guénard, “Theories as Social Action. An Interview With Quentin Skinner
By insisting on the need to consider philosophical works as interventions in the general, ongoing political debates of their time, Quentin Skinner has profoundly renewed the history of ideas. In this interview, he revisits the main themes of his work.
Read the interview→


Paul Mapp, “The Lost World of Wood Runners
“Wood runners” is the name given to travelling fur traders in the age of pioneers. Focusing on two centuries of their risky adventures and on their relationship with Amerindian populations allows Gilles Havard to write a monumental multicultural history of the early North American West.
Read the review →

Sébastien BrocaSurveil and Predict
A new capitalist era has begun, with companies ready to use every means available to know, predict and transform individual behaviour. S. Zuboff warns us of the dangers this represents for individual autonomy and democratic sovereignty.
Read the review →

Olga L. Gonzalez, “The Myth of the Wrong Body
Challenging the essentialist conception of transgendered people as “born in the wrong body,” Miquel Missé proposes a sociology of the body that emphasizes the burden of social norms.
Read the review→

Charles Walton, “Reevaluating Terror in the French Revolution
Was the French Revolution bound to become authoritarian? Do revolutionary ideologies always lead to violence? Annie Jourdan’s book reconfigures mainstream narratives of the Revolution and provides an alternative interpretation of the ‘Reign of Terror’.
Read the review→

Jacob Hamburger, “Activism in the Age of Financialization
By transforming capitalism, the hegemony of finance has created new sites of social struggle. How can citizens regain a form of collective agency in the speculative process? A new book by the philosopher Michel Feher imagines a politics capable of responding to the dominance of finance.
Read the review→

by The editorial team, 12 August 2019

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The editorial team, « Summertime, and Reading Is Easy. A Summer Selection », Books and Ideas , 12 August 2019. ISSN : 2105-3030. URL :

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