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  • Tate Trudi. A Short History of the Crimean War
    A Short History of the Crimean War
    Tate Trudi
    The Crimean War (1853-1856) was the first modern war. A vicious struggle between imperial Russia and an alliance of the British, French and Ottoman Empires, it was the first conflict to be reported first-hand in newspapers, painted by official war artists, recorded by telegraph and photographed by camera. In her new short history Trudi Tate discusses the ways in which this novel representation itself became part of the modern "war machine". She tells forgotten stories about the war experience of individual soldiers and civilians, including journalists, nurses, doctors, war tourists and other witnesses. At the same time, the war was a retrograde one, fought with the mentality, and some of the equipment, of Napoleonic times. Tate argues that the Crimean War was both modern and old-fashioned, looking backwards and forwards, and generating optimism and despair among those who lived through it. She explores this paradox while giving full coverage to the bloody battles (Alma, Balaklava, Inkerman), the siege of Sebastopol, the much-derided strategies of the commanders, conditions in the field and the political impact of the anti-Russian alliance. In it's skilful interweaving of military, medical and social history, the book offers a fresh and intriguing look at one of the most fascinating conflicts of modern times.
  • Steinfeld Jemimah. Little Emperors and Material Girls. Sex and Youth in Modern China
    Little Emperors and Material Girls. Sex and Youth in Modern China
    Steinfeld Jemimah
    China is the world's fastest-growing economic powerhouse. Everybody knows this. But behind the headlines a once-in-a-generation sexual and cultural revolution is taking place - all in the bars, cafes and streets of China's growing mega-cities. Welcome to this new China. Writer and journalist Jemimah Steinfeld meets the young people behind the world's fastest-moving nation to unveil their attitudes towards love, life and sexuality. Young Chinese have new words to describe the world they live in: 'little emperors' - single men who have grown up under the one child policy - they're bossy and selfish; 'bare branches' - those without children; 'leftovers' - women over twenty-six who aren't married; 'comrade' - how the gay community identifies itself; 'love markets' - weekend gatherings across China where parents attempt to find husbands and wives for their children, and others show up to match-make young singles and even offer boyfriends for hire. Jemimah Steinfeld introduces the people at the heart of this world, from the man starting China's first online dating agency to the women who work the red-light districts; from the company trying to sell sex toys to China's middle-classes to the sino-punks of Beijing's bar scene. Little Emperors and Material Girls is the book which will change the way you see China.
  • Bounds Philip. Orwell and Marxism. The Political and Cultural Thinking of George Orwell
    Orwell and Marxism. The Political and Cultural Thinking of George Orwell
    Bounds Philip
    Whether as a fighter in the Spanish Civil War, an advocate of patriotic Socialism or a left-wing opponent of the Soviet Union, George Orwell was the ultimate outsider in politics - insecure, scornful of orthodoxies, cussedly independent. Best known today as the author of Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four, Orwell also wrote seven other full-length books and and a vast number of essays, articles and reviews. A pioneering cultural critic, he addressed a range of important issues including art, literature, "Englishness", mass communication and the spectre of totalitarianism. Famously describing his own background as "lower-upper-middle class", Orwell had a complex relationship with Marxism and all his work reflects the influence of British communism. In this thoughtful and original study Philip Bounds argues that Orwell's writings effectively took the form of a dialogue with the leading British Marxists of his day. Bounds shows that Orwell often agreed with the Marxists and built on their insights in his writings, while on other occasions he used his disagreements with them as the basis of his own critical position. Through close analysis of Orwell's writings as well as his historical and literary context, Bounds has produced an important study of one of the iconic writers of the 20th century. "Orwell and Marxism" offers a thorough introduction to Orwell the intellectual, reviving his reputation as a serious cultural thinker and documenting his most important influences, as well as a convincing portrait of British Marxism and society in the 1930s and 40s.

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