Highway Engineering Australia reviews Max Lay’s new book The Harnessing of Power

Dr Maxwell Gordon Lay’s new book with Cambridge Scholars, The Harnessing of Power: How 19th Century Transport Innovators Transformed the Way the World Operates, has been reviewed in the latest issue of the widely read Australian road magazine Highway Engineering Australia:

The Harnessing of Power: How 19th Century Transport Innovators Transformed the Way the World Operates is definitely recommended reading for industry professionals, or in deed for anyone with an interest in transportation, roads or history. […] The book adopts a broad, global perspective, but initially has a strong British focus as the Revolution was a process predominantly initiated and implemented in Britain. Nevertheless, when it lost momentum, Britain began to lose its leadership. By century’s end France and south-western Germany were the dominant changemakers and the USA was appearing on the horizon […] [the book] maintains his reputation for extremely high quality, well researchedcontent which is both informative and insightful.”


The book is available to purchase directly from Cambridge Scholars by clicking here.

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New Research in Military History Conference – less than a week to abstract submission deadline

It is now just under a week until the abstract submission deadline for the British Commission for Military History’s (BCMH) forthcoming New Research in Military History 2018 Conference. The conference is being held at the University of Southampton on the 16th and 17th of November.

Cambridge Scholars is proud and delighted to be sponsoring the conference, and all who submit an abstract, or register to attend the conference, will automatically be entered into a prize draw to win a military history book of their choice from our catalogue. Not only this, delegates of the conference will be able to receive a bumper discount on selected titles in military history.

Abstracts of 300 words for both 20 minute papers and 5 minute mini-presentations should be submitted to Zack White, the BCMH’s Post-Graduate Liaison, at z.white@soton.ac.uk. Those submitting should also send through the applicant’s name, a contact email address, an indication of whether they would like to do a 5 or 20 minute presentation, and a short (200 word) biography. All papers focusing on military history in any historical period are welcomed and will be reviewed by the NRC Organising Committee. The deadline for submissions is 19.00 on Sunday 23rd September 2018.

BCMH_CFP

New Research in Military History Conference – just over a week to abstract submission deadline

It is now just over a week until the abstract submission deadline for the British Commission for Military History’s (BCMH) forthcoming New Research in Military History 2018 Conference. The conference is being held at the University of Southampton on the 16th and 17th of November.

Cambridge Scholars is proud and delighted to be sponsoring the conference, and all who submit an abstract, or register to attend the conference, will automatically be entered into a prize draw to win a military history book of their choice from our catalogue. Not only this, delegates of the conference will be able to receive a bumper discount on selected titles in military history.

Abstracts of 300 words for both 20 minute papers and 5 minute mini-presentations should be submitted to Zack White, the BCMH’s Post-Graduate Liaison, at z.white@soton.ac.uk. Those submitting should also send through the applicant’s name, a contact email address, an indication of whether they would like to do a 5 or 20 minute presentation, and a short (200 word) biography. All papers focusing on military history in any historical period are welcomed and will be reviewed by the NRC Organising Committee. The deadline for submissions is 19.00 on Sunday 23rd September 2018.

BCMH_CFP

New review of The Great War against Eastern European Jewry, 1914-1920 by Giuseppe Motta

Giuseppe Motta’s book, entitled The Great War against Eastern European Jewry, 1914-1920 and published last November by Cambridge Scholars, has been reviewed in the July edition of Slavonic and East European Review by Alexander V. Prusin. A wide ranging and occasionally critical review, an indicative excerpt can be viewed below. The full review can be read here (requires subscription):

“The book’s strengths lie in its rich historiographic foundation and abundance in factual details. Well-written and free of academic jargon, it should inspire interest not only amongst scholars, but also general readers. The author methodically describes the evolution of anti-Jewish prejudices from the nineteenth century to the deportations by the Russian army in World War One, when the existing negative stereotypes of Jews were reinforced by a ‘spyfever’, which permeated all war-zones. […] it will be a welcome addition to reading for courses on Jewish history, nationalism and wartime ethnic conflicts, in conjunction with more nuanced studies.”


The book can be purchased directly from Cambridge Scholars by clicking here.

Book review: Peace and Conflict Resolution in Africa: Lessons and Opportunities

Researchers, academics and students of conflict and peace will find this book beneficial and its disposition meticulous. The volume’s strength is its exploration of the subjects of conflict and peace from various dimensions.  One can compare this volume with other illustrious books in the field of conflict and its obvious strength is its focus on Africa because the Continent still needs more work to redeem it from the vestiges of ills such as famine, poverty and strife that continually arise due to wars and conflicts. The rigour of the volume is then its ability to portray the challenges currently, as well as those that Africa has had over the decades; the Continent has experienced so many intractable conflicts that have displaced her children. Many people have exacerbated the refugee crisis and hunger in the various African states. The atrocities in South Sudan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Northern Nigeria, and Kenya are all indicative of the areas that have witnessed bloody violence. Some of these areas have been totally neglected and for many citizens of war-torn zones there is dim future as women and children are maimed and raped whilst their men are brutally murdered.

This edited volume by Ernest E. Uwazie searches for elusive solutions in these times of unending conflicts. Informed by optimistic Pan-African belief that Africa will rise the essays rummage for social justice, culture of peace and the serious search for identities in a field of ravaged war-torn savannahs. Africans need not obliterate the vision of a better land and a more promising world. The promising Africa though is destroyed by actions such as the abduction of girls in Chibok, the decades-long Western Sahara conflict between the Polisariao and the Kingdom of Morocco as well as the government abuses in Central Africa Republic, to cite but a few.

Various chapters in the volume firstly explore approaches of understanding the anatomy and history of intractable conflicts before the focus on possible paths of peace that would steer Africans away from gloomy agendas mired in African disputes. The volume also covers a number of themes that although not exhaustive may help the reader comprehend a broad view of conflicts in Africa. Leadership; Peacekeeping intervention programmes; ethnicity as an identity of conflict, human rights and democracy as well as traditional values are all bigger themes tackled in this book with sub-themes such as youth activism, gender and religion. These are all critical to the understanding of conflict in any country. The volume does not delude itself by pretending that there are silver bullets and quick fixes when it comes to peace building and sustenance thereof in Africa. Deadly conflicts in several African states have been on and off for years. Civilians have in many instances been bearing the brunt of insurgency in the entire Continent; Boko Haram, Al Shabaab, Muslim Brotherhood, Lord’s Resistance Army are just some of the role-players in momentous conflicts. The contributors in this volume are aware of the continuing challenges on peace initiatives and how the rule of law is destroyed by conflicts. Africa also dawdles when it comes to sustainable development. The conflict and the absence of peace in African states brings with it an Africa that is perpetually seeking donors to help them out of the deadly conflicts. Yet Africa needs to develop own programmes and solutions, be self-sustained if peace is to prevail for epochs to come.

Several chapters demonstrate that peace is attainable and the future not so disconsolate. This is summarized by Baker in Chapter two who writes about an Africa that would turn her past as she marches towards the future of resilience. “There will be setbacks. And there are no easy shortcuts. Success depends upon good leadership, generational change and most important of all – improved political legitimacy in the eyes of all people” (Baker, 2017). This captures the thrust of the volume. The volume also demonstrates how Africa ought to take charge of the future whilst entrenching the atmosphere of optimism. It is also commendable in an age of decolonisation and the search for epistemic freedom to explicate how Africa can bring forth her own solutions by extrapolating from own cultures and identities. Africa has always had homebrewed ways of living; Nyerere spoke of Ujamaa, in Malawi there is Munthu, in Zimbabwe they speak of Munhu and the Nguni in South Africa talk about Ubuntu. These are philosophies that are part of African ontologies that we can glean from as we search for peaceable societies. These refer to the idea of communalism, solidarity, connectedness and dependability. It is commendable to read about the role of Umuada in Igbo (Chapter eleven), the traditional values and methods in Africa as well as Indigenous Knowledge Systems in general. In a variety of cases the West’s involvement in Africa has aggravated relations amongst people. The demarcation of some borders led to conflicts especially when these were combined with ethno-religious conflicts that Ugorji explores in Chapter eighteen.

Overall, the voices in this volume are cogent, forthright, pragmatic and lucid. These are realistic and authentic voices that confront the roots of African conflicts and the search for peace with scholarly rigour. This is an excellent addition to the literature of Conflict Studies as well as Conflict Management and Transformation. It is also a wonderful, thought provoking, critical resource for all those interested in the systematic study of conflicts. Whether in the academia or outside, this collection of essays will enable many examine the management of conflicts with zeal and creative passion. The volume is amongst the worthy references that help in simplifying the complex labyrinths of conflicts in Africa. It explicates the nature of conflict and the essays ensure that the book never loses its potency in exposing the travails of conflict journeys around the Continent.

Yet, this entire narrative is interwoven with hope and peace agenda for a future Africa that will struggle against all odds. The volume should also be lauded for enhancing the decolonial episteme in the field of peace studies and conflict. To a huge extent the book responds to culturecides and epistemicides in a land that continues to seek for its place in a planetary world. The content also demonstrates that Africanists and African intellectuals can indeed deprovincialise Europe and assert Africa’s role in bringing peace and stability. It may not be the absence of conflict that Africans aspire for that will be critical for future generations, but it can be the inability of Africans to transform and manage conflicts that would irk generations to come – and the book has brought forward some of the necessary strategies to confronting conflict and embrace peace judiciously.

Africa is vast with more than fifty states and perhaps the major gap is that it does not touch many other cases from the various (other) parts of the Continent. It would have been scholarly exalting to include contributors from places in North of Africa, Central Africa as well as some in the southern parts where there can be more lessons to glean from for Africa and the world.


Reviewed by Vuyisile Msila, University of South Africa. Msila received a Master of Philosophy in Conflict Management and Transformation from Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. He is currently a Director in the Change Management Unit of the University. Her interests include governance, leadership and management, conflict transformation, and decolonisation of Knowledge.

Peace and Conflict Resolution in Africa: Lessons and Opportunities is available now from Cambridge Scholars, and can be purchased by clicking here.

Call for chapters: British Travel Narratives on Wars

British Travel and Narratives on Wars is a forthcoming edited collection under consideration for publication by Cambridge Scholars Publishing, and the editors Jeanne Dubino and Elisabetta Marino invite contributors to submit book chapter proposals. If you are interested in contributing please contact marino@lettere.uniroma2.it  and dubinoja@appstate.edu for further information. Continue reading

Dr Mary Honan given a civic reception honouring her scholarly work on peace, justice, and reconciliation

We are delighted to share news that Dr Mary Honan, author of The Literary Representation of World War II Childhood: Interrogating the Concept of Hospitality, published with Cambridge Scholars in 2017, was honoured with a civic reception recognising “her outstanding academic research on race & ethnic relations, peace & reconciliation” (see here for more details).

Mary’s speech at the reception can be viewed here, and her book with Cambridge Scholars can be purchased by clicking here.