Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

What Are You Reading?

Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

What Are You Reading?

Article excerpt

A weekly look over the shoulders of our scholar-reviewers

Heike Bauer, senior lecturer in English and gender studies at Birkbeck, University of London, is reading Sarah Helm's If This Is a Woman - Inside Ravensbrück: Hitler's Concentration Camp for Women (Abacus, 2015). "In the current climate of xenophobic and racist fear-mongering and a widespread disregard for the many lives lost in flight from war, violence and persecution, Helm's study provides a timely reminder of the ease with which people are turned into targets whose humanity is ignored or forgotten. This carefully researched history of the all-female Nazi death camp, which is partly based on interviews with surviving prisoners and guards, avoids stereotyping as it tracks the lives of women who suffered or perpetrated barely imaginable brutality. Most of all, it gives voice to the survivors whose stories were suppressed after the Second World War. We must not forget them or the deadly silence in the face of collective suffering."

James Stevens Curl, visiting professor at the University of Ulster, is reading Regina Akel's Benjamin Disraeli and John Murray: The Politician, the Publisher and The Representative (Liverpool University Press, 2016). "Intended as a rival to The Times, The Representative, established in 1825, only lasted some six months before it failed, costing the publisher, John Samuel Murray, heavy financial loss. Drawing on material held in the Bodleian Library and the National Library of Scotland, the scholarly Chilean author presents, in mellifluous English, a sequence of events that sheds new light on matters that led to estrangement between the D'Israeli and Murray families, not least because of the duplicitous behaviour of the young Benjamin Disraeli in his dealings with John Gibson Lockhart and his cruel attack on Murray in Vivian Grey (1826). …

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