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ISSN 1749-8155

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Review Date: 
1 Jan 2004

This book is about four episodes of excess mortality in Russia/the USSR: 1914-22, 1931-38, 1941-45, and the 1990s. The book is aimed at the general reader, although it may be of most use to older schoolchildren and students on many courses.

Review Date: 
1 Feb 2004

There are several novel things about this book that make it worth reading. The first one relates to the author. Unlike most other historians of Japan, who come from the areas of Japanese or East Asian studies, the author of this book arrives from an unexpected field. L. M.

Review Date: 
31 May 2003

s the deft pun in the title reminds us, one of the ways in which nations were both imagined and institutionalised in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries was through the conscripting of young men into the army. The ways in which they were called up, selected, trained and led, and the arrangements made for their families left behind deeply affected the nature of nationhood.

Review Date: 
1 May 2003

Not so long ago, Peter the Great was commonly portrayed by historians on both sides of the Iron Curtain as a proto-Homo Sovieticus: an icon of muscular masculinity, giant in both frame and achievement. According to this tradition, it was Peter's distinctive genius to drag a backward and xenophobic Muscovy, kicking and screaming, into the rational modern world.

Review Date: 
1 Oct 2002

Few settings in China’s modern history have been explored in greater depth than Shanghai. Moreover, sexuality has been a 'sexy' topic in Chinese history for the better part of the past decade. And significantly, the French original was published hot on the heels of another major publication by Gail Hershatter (2) on exactly the same topic.

Review Date: 
31 Mar 2002

History on this scale is a daunting task, not just for the breadth of scholarship it requires but also because it lays before the author the powerful temptations of platitude and over-generalization. Geoffrey Hosking, as he has amply shown elsewhere, is a historian who can draw a big picture without losing his curiosity, his feel for detail, or his capacity for concise but penetrating summary.

Review Date: 
31 Jan 2002

Antoine-Louis-Henri Polier was a Swiss Protestant of French descent who served in the army of the British East India Company. The major part of his service was in northern India, beyond the area under formal British control.

Review Date: 
31 Oct 2001

`What could be more universal than death?' asks an anthropologist quoted by Merridale. [58] Death is a major aspect of the history of any society, and one which brings out its members' deepest beliefs. But in twentieth century Russia it has been peculiarly dominant, because so many deaths have been premature or violent.

Review Date: 
1 Apr 2001

In Madness, Cannabis and Colonialism, James H. Mills examines the lunatic asylums of colonial India, between the war of 1857 and the end of the nineteenth century. Throughout this period, the total number of mental patients in the country did not exceed five thousand at any given time.

Review Date: 
1 Feb 2001

The figure of the devadasi, or ‘temple-woman’, who entertained Hindu gods at festivals, hardly needs an introduction. Because of her supposed sexual availability, the devadasi became a potent and notorious symbol of the corruption of Hindu society.

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