New books for reds and greens

Ecosocialist Bookshelf, March 2018

Six new books on the science for the people movement, health care under capitalism, the criminalizing of poverty, Yemen in crisis, the origins of everything, and communism and democracy

Ecosocialist Bookshelf is an occasional feature. We can’t review every book we receive, but we will list and link to any that seem relevant to Climate & Capitalism’s mission, along with brief descriptions. Titles listed here may be reviewed in future.

Please note: Inclusion of a book does not imply endorsement, or that we agree with everything (or even anything!) the book says.

Documents from America’s Movement of Radical Scientists

Edited by Sigrid Schmalzer, Daniel S. Chard, and Alyssa Botelho
University of Massachusetts Press, 2018
From 1969 to 1989, Science for the People mobilized American scientists, teachers, and students to practice a socially and economically just science, rather than one that served militarism and corporate profits. This anthology of original documents from the most important radical science movement in U.S. history, offering vital contributions to today’s debates on science, justice, democracy, sustainability, and political power.

Moving Beyond Capitalism for Our Health

by Howard Waitzkin and the Working Group on Health Beyond Capitalism
Monthly Review Press, 2018
Noted health-care professionals, scholars, and activists impart their inside knowledge of the medical system: what’s wrong, how it got this way, and what we can do to heal it. Essays address the medical industrial complex, the impact of privatization and cutbacks under neoliberalism, the nature of health-care work, and the intersections between health care and imperialism.

The Criminalization of Poverty in America

by Peter Edelman
New Press, 2017
In one of the richest countries on Earth it is a crime to be poor. Peter Edelman, who famously resigned from the administration of Bill Clinton over welfare “reform,” paints a shocking picture of a mean-spirited, retributive system that seals whole communities into inescapable cycles of poverty.

Autocracy, Neo-Liberalism and the Disintegration of a State

by Helen Lackner
Saqi Books, 2017
Fuelled by Arab and Western intervention, the civil war in Yemen has killed thousands and left millions close to starvation. Helen Lackner uncovers the roots of the social and political conflicts that threaten the very survival of the state and its people. She reveals the corruption of the country’s US-backed autocratic regime, as well as its failure to address national impoverishment and to plan an equitable economy.

in 100 Pages (More or Less)

by David Bercovici
Yale University Press, 2016
A concise, wryly intelligent history of everything, from the Big Bang to the advent of human civilization, making connections between the essential theories that give us our current understanding of topics as varied as particle physics, plate tectonics, and photosynthesis.

History, Debates and Potentials

Mike Makin-Waite
Lawrence & Wishart, 2017
Makin-Waite argues that the democratic and liberal counter-currents that have always existed within the communist movement have much to offer the left project today. He aims to recover some of the hard-won insights of the critical communist tradition, in the belief that they can still be of service to the twenty-first-century left.


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Posted in Books & Reports, Health threats, Inequality & Class, Middle East, Movement Building, Science

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