Reading for Battle

Battle Readings is a regularly updated compilation of articles, essays, and opinion pieces relevant to the themes of the Battle of Ideas.

Choose a theme from the listing on the left to narrow your search, or view all readings.

Recent Readings

The Enemies of Progress: Dangers of Sustainability
This polemical book examines the concept of sustainability and presents a critical exploration of its all-pervasive influence on society, arguing that sustainability, manifested in several guises, represents a pernicious and corrosive doctrine that has survived primarily because there seems to be no alternative to its canon: in effect, its bi-partisan appeal has depressed critical engagement and neutered politics.

Austin Williams, Imprint Academic, 1 May 2008

China's New Confucianism: Politics and Everyday Life in a Changing Society
Bell observes the rituals, routines, and tensions of daily life in China."China's New Confucianism" makes the case that as the nation retreats from communism, it is embracing a new Confucianism that offers a compelling alternative to Western liberalism.

Daniel Bell, Princeton University Press, 1 May 2008

Stabilizing an Unstable Economy
Mr. Minsky explains why the American economy has experienced periods of debilitating inflation, rising unemployment, and marked slowdowns-and why the economy is now undergoing a credit crisis that he foresaw.

Hyman Minsky, McGraw-Hill Professional, 1 May 2008

Getting Rich First: Life in a Changing China
The peasant revolutionary turned lifestyle guru, the former Shaolin monk working on a Shanghai building site, the once-conservative father running a gay hotline - and the teenagers who just want to dress up as their favourite Japanese cartoon characters - welcome to the new China, a nation in motion, where whole streets are rebuilt in a week, car ownership is soaring, education goes private and rural workers migrate to the cities in search of a better life.

Duncan Hewitt, Vintage, 1 May 2008

The bone detective
Sue Black's job involves rummaging around in mass graves, examining the remains of dead children and identifying people from their severed limbs. The forensic anthropologist tells Julie Bindel about the many secrets revealed by our skeletons and why 95% of her students are female.
Julie Bindel, The Guardian, 30 April 2008

The emerging moral psychology
Experimental results are beginning to shed light on the psychological foundations of our moral beliefs
Dan Jones, Prospect, 27 April 2008

You’re an Author? Me Too!
It’s well established that Americans are reading fewer books than they used to. A recent report by the National Endowment for the Arts found that 53 percent of Americans surveyed hadn’t read a book in the previous year — a state of affairs that has prompted much soul-searching by anyone with an affection for (or business interest in) turning pages.
Rachel Donadio, New York Times, 27 April 2008

The first person singular
The capacity of music to reveal to us the truth of an important dimension of existence has inspired generations
Frank Furedi, Daily Telegraph, 26 April 2008

Punjab reaps a poisoned harvest
As food prices rise, there are even problems in the Indian region of Punjab, where science once seemed to have found answers for a hungry world.
David Loyn, BBC News, 26 April 2008

The Republican Party and Immigration Politics: From Proposition 187 to George W. Bush
This book examines the 1990s backlash against illegal immigrants. Wroe explains why many Americans turned against immigration, looking at the origins of California's Proposition 187 and its wider political implications.

Andrew Roe, Palgrave Macmillan, 25 April 2008


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A cultured ear: why does listening to music matter?

"I loved the Battle of Ideas, which was mad, wild, and sparky. 2011 looks set to be even better."
Anthony Seldon, master, Wellington College; historian; political commentator

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