A Crucible of Modern Global Capitalism–A Review of “Made in Hong Kong”

Hamilton, Peter E. Made in Hong Kong: Transpacific Networks and a New History of Globalization. New York: Columbia University Press, 2021. Reviewed by James Watson-Krips There are few places in the world quite like Hong Kong. Billed as “Asia’s World City,” it is today celebrated as much for its striking cityscape as its vibrant street […]

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Governing a City in the West Bank — A Review of “Mayor”

Mayor. Directed by David Osit. Rosewater Pictures, LLC, 2020. Reviewed by Maytal Mark City branding is not the topic one expects to dwell on in a documentary about Palestinian civil engineer and Ramallah mayor Musa Hadid. But Mayor director David Osit’s camera returns repeatedly to the visual symbol of the city’s prominent “WeRamallah” sign, built […]

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East German Influence on Urban Vietnam — A Review of “Building Socialism”

Schwenkel, Christina. Building Socialism: The Afterlife of East German Architecture in Urban Vietnam. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2020. Reviewed by Katherine Zubovich By 1973, a decade of repeated U. S. air strikes had left the northern Vietnamese city of Vinh in ruins. In the coming years, Vinh would be rebuilt with the help of […]

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Skyscrapers and Stalinism — A Review of “Moscow Monumental”

Zubovich, Katherine. Moscow Monumental: Soviet Skyscrapers and Urban Life in Stalin’s Capital. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2021. Reviewed by  Zinaida Osipova While many people seek to understand why the Soviet Union fell apart, Katherine Zubovich focuses on one of its enduring successes—the seven skyscrapers designed under Joseph Stalin that still dominate Moscow’s landscape. […]

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China’s Overlooked Small Towns — A Review of “China in One Village”

Hong, Liang. China in One Village: The Story of One Town and the Future of the World. Translated by Emily Goedde. New York: Verso Books, 2021. Reviewed by Lei Zhang Good scholarly accounts of life in rural China have been scant of late, because of a dearth of accounts written by people acquainted with small-town […]

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Making Fashion and Design Capitals — A Review of “Paris to New York”

Pouillard, Véronique. Paris to New York: The Transatlantic Fashion Industry in the Twentieth Century. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2021. Reviewed by Lauren Laframboise If you’ve bought clothes in recent decades, chances are that they’re products of a dizzyingly complex supply chain, involving hundreds of different people’s labor across several distant towns and cities. Although […]

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Conservative Policies and the Rust Belt — A Review of “Manufacturing Decline”

Hackworth, Jason. Manufacturing Decline: How Racism and the Conservative Movement Crush the American Rust Belt. New York: Columbia University Press, 2019. Reviewed by Kenneth Alyass During the turbulent 2016 election campaign Donald Trump spoke at a rally in Akron, Ohio, about the crisis of American cities. In what was advertised as a “pitch to minority […]

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South Asians in Houston — A Review of “Redefining the Immigrant South”

Quraishi, Uzma. Redefining the Immigrant South: Indian and Pakistani Immigration to Houston During the Cold War. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2020.  Reviewed by Iliana Yamileth Rodriguez In 1965, the United States passed the Immigration and Nationality Act against the backdrop of the Cold War. Extending preference to skilled migrants, allowing for family […]

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Photos of Inequality — A Review of “The Street”

Kwate, Naa Oyo A., ed. The Street: A Photographic Field Guide to American Inequality. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2021. Reviewed by Howard Gillette In 1992 Time Magazine presented its readers with a scathing picture of Camden, New Jersey, under the telling headline, “Who Could Live Here?” Featuring images of desecrated landscapes as the background […]

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Creating Research Triangle Park– A Review of “Brain Magnet”

Cummings, Alex Sayf. Brain Magnet: Research Triangle Park and the Idea of the Idea Economy. New York: Columbia University Press, 2020. Reviewed by Andrew Hedden A generation of labor historians famously asked: “Why was there no socialism in the United States?” Employing new forms of social history and foregrounding the country’s long history of class […]

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