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Democracy and Modernity

International Colloquium on the Centenary of David Ben-Gurion

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Edited by Shmuel N. Eisenstadt

Democracy and Modernity presents a colloquium of scholars on the present state of democracy in many parts of the globe, in both developed and developing countries. Where does it stand firm, and where is it on shifting ground? What are the conditions necessary for the consolidation of democracy, and what difficulties face those countries where a stable democratic regime is still a hope for the future? How do the political traditions of a country's past affect its ability to maintain democracy in the present?
Recent changes in the nature of regimes in many previously non-democratic countries have made these questions all the more timely. The example of other countries that have made the shift from non-democratic or pre-democratic to democratic regimes in the recent past will surely prove relevant to those encountering a similar complex of problems today.
Contributions to the volume include those of Seymour Martin Lipset, on conditions of the democratic order and social change; Ralf Dahrendorf, on the European experience; Shlomo Avineri, responding to Lipset and Dahrendorf; Shlomo Ben Ami, on Southern Europe; Carlo Rossetti, on the rule of law; Luis Roniger, on the consolidation of democracy in Southern Europe and Latin America; Myron Weiner, On India; Erik Cohen, on Thailand; Ben-Ami Shillony, on the political tradition of Japan; Naomi Chazan, on Africa; and Metin Heper, on the Turkish case. The Introduction and Concluding Remarks by S.N. Eisenstadt set the individual presentations within the time-frame of global developments since World War II and within the comprehensive context of the political culture of the modern state.

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Sandra Vlasta

Up until now, ‘migration literature’ has primarily been defined as ‘texts written by migrant authors’, a definition that has been discussed, criticised, and even rejected by critics and authors alike. Very rarely has ‘migration literature’ been understood as ‘literature on the topic of migration’, which is an approach this book adopts by presenting a comparative analysis of contemporary texts on experiences of migration. By focusing on specific themes and motifs in selected texts, this study suggests that migration literature is a sub-genre that exists in both various bodies of literature as well as various languages. This book analyses English and German texts by authors such as Monica Ali, Dimitré Dinev, Anna Kim, Timothy Mo, Preethi Nair, Caryl Phillips, Hamid Sadr, and Vladimir Vertlib, among others.

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Edited by Peter Kelly and Annelies Kamp

In A Critical Youth Studies for the 21st Century Peter Kelly and Annelies Kamp present an edited collection that explores the challenges and opportunities faced by young people in an often dangerous 21st century. In an increasingly globalised world these challenges and opportunities include those associated with widening inequalities, precarious labour markets, the commodification of education, the hopes for democracy, and with practising an identity under these circumstances and in these spaces.

Drawing on contemporary critical social theories and diverse methodologies, contributors to the collection, who are established and emerging scholars from the Americas, Europe, and Asia/Pacific, open up discussions about what a critical youth studies can contribute to community, policy and academic debates about these challenges and opportunities.

Contributors are: Anna Anderson, Dena Aufseeser, Judith Bessant, Ros Black, Daniel Briggs, Laurie Browne, David Cairns, Perri Campbell, James Côté, Ann Dadich, Maria de Lourdes Beldi Alacantra, Nora Duckett, Deirdre Duffy, Angela Dwyer, Christina Ergler, Michelle Fine, Madeline Fox, Andy Furlong, Theo Gavrielides, Henry Giroux, John Goodwin, Keith Heggart, Luke Howie, Amelia Johns, Annelies Kamp, Peter Kelly, Fengshu Liu, Conor McGuckin, Majella McSharry, Filipa Menezes, Magda Nico, Pam Nilan, Henrietta O'Connor, Jo Pike, Herwig Reiter, Geraldine Scanlon, Keri Schwab, Michael Shevlin, Adnan Selimovic, Joan Smith, Jodie Taylor, Steven Threadgold, Vappu Tyyskä, Brendan Walsh, Lucas Walsh, Rob Watts, Bronwyn Wood, Dan Woodman, and David Zyngier.

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Christa Wirth

Memories of Belonging is a three-generation oral-history study of the offspring of southern Italians who migrated to Worcester, Massachusetts, in 1913.
Supplemented with the interviewees’ private documents and working from U.S. and Italian archives, Christa Wirth documents a century of transatlantic migration, assimilation, and later-generation self-identification. Her research reveals how memories of migration, everyday life, and ethnicity are passed down through the generations, altered, and contested while constituting family identities.

The fact that not all descendants of Italian migrants moved into the U.S. middle class, combined with their continued use of hyphenated identities, points to a history of lived ethnicity and societal exclusion. Moreover, this book demonstrates the extent of forgetting that is required in order to construct an ethnic identity.

Peripheral Visions in the Globalizing Present

Space, Mobility, Aesthetics

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Edited by Esther Peeren, Hanneke Stuit and Astrid Van Weyenberg

This volume sheds new light on how today’s peripheries are made, lived, imagined and mobilized in a context of rapidly advancing globalization. Focusing on peripheral spaces, mobilities and aesthetics, it presents critical readings of, among others, Indian caste quarters, the Sahara, the South African backyard and European migration, as well as films, novels and artworks about marginalized communities and repressed histories. Together, these readings insist that the peripheral not only needs more visibility in political, economic and cultural terms, but is also invaluable for creating alternative perspectives on the globalizing present. Peripheral Visions combines sociological, cultural, literary and philosophical perspectives on the periphery, and highlights peripheral innovation and futurity to counter the lingering association of the peripheral with stagnation and backwardness.

China’s Social Insurance in the Twentieth Century

A Global Historical Perspective

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Aiqun Hu

In China’s Social Insurance in the Twentieth Century, Aiqun Hu develops a framework of “interactive diffusion of global models” in examining the history of China’s social insurance since the 1910s. The book covers both Nationalist- and Communist-controlled areas (1927-1949) and Taiwan (1949-present), surpassing the party divide. It argues that China’s progression in social insurance resulted from diffusion of two global models (German capitalist and Soviet socialist social insurance) until the early 1990s. Thereafter, China’s social insurance reforms were increasingly directed by the World Bank’s neoliberal models, which also influenced Taiwan’s pension reforms. During the entire process, however, global forces provided the basic intellectual framework, while national forces determined the timing and specifics of adopting the models.

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Dan La Botz

This volume is a valuable re-assessment of the Nicaraguan Revolution by a Marxist historian of Latin American political history. It shows that the FSLN (‘the Sandinistas’), with politics principally shaped by Soviet and Cuban Communism, never had a commitment to genuine democracy either within the revolutionary movement or within society at large; that the FSLN’s lack of commitment to democracy was a key factor in the way that revolution was betrayed from the 1970s to the 1990s; and that the FSLN’s lack of rank-and-file democracy left all decision-making to the National Directorate and ultimately placed that power in the hands of Daniel Ortega. Pursuing his narrative into the present, La Botz shows that, once their would-be bureaucratic ruling class project was defeated, Ortega and the FSLN leadership turned to an alliance with the capitalist class.

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Edited by Christian Giuseppe De Vito and Alex Lichtenstein

Global Convict Labour offers a global history of convict labour across many of the regimes of punishment that have appeared from Antiquity to the present, including transportation, prisons, workhouses and labour camps. The editors' essay surveys the available literature, and sets the theoretical basis to approach the issue. The fifteen chapters explore the genealogies of convict labour and its relationships with coloniality and governmentality.

The volume re-establishes convict labour firmly within labour history, as one of the entangled, multiple labour relations that have punctuated human history. Similarly, it places convictism back within migration history at large, bridging the gap between the growing literature on convict transportation and research on slavery and other forms of free and bonded migration.

Contributors are: Carlos Aguirre, David Arnold, Marc Buggeln, Timothy Coates, Christian G. De Vito, Mary Gibson, Miriam J. Groen-Vallinga, Stacey Hynd, Padraic Kenney, Alex Lichtenstein, Hamish Maxwell-Stewart, Alice Rio, Ricardo D. Salvatore, Jean-Lucien Sanchez, Pieter Spierenburg, Stephan Steiner, Laurens E. Tacoma, Heather Ann Thompson, Lynne Viola.

Finance Capital Today

Corporations and Banks in the Lasting Global Slump

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François Chesnais

Finance Capital Today is shortlisted for the The Isaac and Tamara Deutscher Memorial Prize 2017.

Finance Capital Today presents a rich new analysis of the specific features of contemporary capitalism, notably its truly global nature and its financialisation, calling on Marxist analyses of the concentration, centralisation and globalisation of capital and Marx’s theory of interest-bearing and fictitious capital. Chesnais shows how financial globalisation and the exponential growth of financial assets have developed alongside the globalisation of productive capital, paying special attention to the contemporary operations of transnational corporations and global oligopoly. He argues that the macroeconomic perspective is one in which large amounts of capital are looking for profitable investment in a setting of underlying overproduction and low profits. The outcome will be low global growth, repeated financial shocks and the growing interconnection between the environmental and economic crises.

Global Hakka

Hakka Identity in the Remaking

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Jessieca Leo

In Global Hakka: Hakka Identity in the Remaking Jessieca Leo offers a needed update on Hakka history and a reassessment of Hakka identity in the global and transnational contexts. Leo gives fresh insights into concepts such as ethnicity, identity, Han, Chineseness, overseas Chinese, and migration in relation to Hakka identity.

Globalization, transnationalism, deterritorialization and migration drive the rapid transformation and reformation of Hakka identity to the point of no return. Dehakkalization through cultural adaptation or genetic transfer has created an elastic identity in the global Hakka and different kinds of Hakka communities around the world.

Jessieca Leo convincingly shows that the concept of ‘being Hakka’ in the twenty-first century is better referred to as Hakkaness – a quality determined by lifestyle and personal choices.

"Among the Chinese, tradition long resisted the idea of migration. In practice, however, there were many layers of adaptation to different circumstances. The Hakka have been exceptional in having always been conscious of their migratory successes. This book explores with great sensitivity how Hakka history outside China influences the way they respond to the new global environment. Combining careful scholarship with self-discovery, Jessieca Leo captures the processes by which one group of Chinese became migrants who consider migration as normal. Her fascinating and original work takes the study of the Hakka to a higher level and offers fresh insights for understanding how other migratory Chinese are transforming tradition today."
Professor Wang Gungwu, National University of Singapore