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07.25.2013 , 10:37 AM | #11
Richard J. Evans - The Third Reich in Power

Second part (1933-1939) of a very well-regarded trilogy by one of the better historians of Nazi Germany right now. Evans is in a class with the likes of Ian Kershaw. I will admit that I'm not incredibly interested in the Nazi period or the Second World War - my interests lie in significantly earlier things - but Evans does a good job of aggregating the recent literature in an eminently readable fashion. That said, the readability does come at a price; Evans spent an awful lot of time on anecdotal history and on social/cultural analysis at the expense of talking in-depth about, say, the economy. Considering how provocative his conclusions on that economy were, one would assume he'd spend more time defending them. Oh well. Anyway, that's a minor nitpick. Good book, have learned a lot so far.

Wang Zheng - Women in the Chinese Enlightenment: Oral and Textual Histories

While I am interested in May Fourth China (the strict periodization would probably be 1919-1925 or so, but I prefer to use it as referring to Chinese society from 1919-1937, an acceptable alternative), and gendered history outside the narrow and sterile confines of "late twentieth century white America" is fun and exciting to me, I will confess that I'm reading this book more for research purposes than for anything else. So I've kinda been skipping around. I will say that the interviews, on the whole, were generally very interesting, but what really sold them for me was the author's excellent footnoting.
Euphrosynē (n., Greek) - "mirth, merriment"