William H. Starbuck (NYU): The Constant Causes of Never-Ending Faddishness in the Behavioral and Social Sciences. Fred Eidlin (Tartu): Reconciling the General and the Unique: Area Studies, Case Studies, and History versus Generalizing Social Science. Niccolo Leo Caldararo (SFSU): The Psychic Unity of Mankind: The Origins of Anthropology, the Anti-Slavery Movement and Cultural Relativism. Alberto Vanolo (Turin): The Border between Core and Periphery: Geographical Representations of the World System. The introduction to Durkheim and the Birth of Economic Sociology by Philippe Steiner. Rejecting Double Blind: Economics association and political science journal abandon what has been dominant form of peer review in social sciences. The prophet redeemed: Tom Nairn reviews Ernest Gellner: An Intellectual Biography by John A. Hall. Alan Wolfe reviews Lawrence Scaff's Max Weber in America (and more). An interview with Peter Baehr, author of Hannah Arendt, Totalitarianism, and the Social Sciences. Gabrielle Wood on the growing population of spiritual aspirants in the 21st century: Could social scientists empower them with information needed to make choices in the "spiritual marketplace"? From Contexts, an article on "embedded sociologists". How to be a public intellectual: An interview with Herbert Gans on making academic research — sociology in particular — relevant. Harvey Mansfield on sociology and other "Meathead" majors. A look at how the social sciences face an uphill battle proving their worth to Congress.
Neve Gordon (Ben-Gurion): Democracy and Colonialism. Karen E. Bravo (Indiana): On Making Persons: Legal Constructions of Personhood and Their Nexus with Human Trafficking. Running away from "Mama Grizzly": Are well-off progressives standing in the way of a real movement for economic justice? Driving the Limit: Are wealthy nations maxed out on travel? From NYRB, Joanne Landy and Thomas Harrison on repression in Bahrain. John Boehner likes to say that the United States is “broke, going on bankrupt,” but we’re not broke — not at all. A review of Inside Scientology: The Story of America's Most Secretive Religion by Janet Reitman. From bomb-bearing balloons to the Global Hawk: Ed Darack on a brief history of unmanned aircraft. John Hayman on homosexuality as a survival advantage for early man. Immanuel Wallerstein on the political quandary of Barack Obama. Here are 10 reasons why Japan's door to the top job keeps on revolving — and why his successor will need unwavering guts. A review of Hugh Trevor-Roper: The Biography by Adam Sisman.
Nico Voigtlander (UCLA) and Hans-Joachim Voth (UPF): Persecution Perpetuated: The Medieval Origins of Anti-Semitic Violence in Nazi Germany (and more). The anthology Philosemitism in History shows that "Jew lovers" have often been just a shade better than anti-Semites — and sometimes no better at all. Here there is a why: Primo Levi's Holocaust experiences informed his outlook but did not define or constrain it. A review of Simon Wiesenthal: The Life and Legends by Tom Segev. Studying the 1961 Adolf Eichmann trial provided a reminder to Deborah E. Lipstadt that it’s always crucial to confront Holocaust denialism, whether among Nazis in the immediate postwar years or from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad today (and more). The Zeitgeist movement is the first Internet-based apocalyptic cult, centered around a doomsday-proclaiming film and an ideology filled with classic anti-Semitic tropes. Israel Shamir is a slippery Holocaust-doubter whose anti-Semitic, anti-Israel views are — in the age of WikiLeaks — finding a new audience (and part 2). Eve Garrard on Richard Kuper on the working definition of anti-Semitism. While the term "holocaust", with its great evocative power, is never far from the headlines, the "H-word" and other terms associated with WWII have been creeping into the public discourse with an alarming frequency.