Spring 2020 University Press Recommendations

This page is documented in a Twitter thread available here. The master list of university presses, catalogs, and Twitter accounts can be found here. All seasonal recommendation lists are posted here.


Spring 2020 Book Recommendations by . . .
General Interest
Race and Whiteness
American Studies
SF / Fantasy / Horror Studies
Comics Studies
Media and Film Studies

The recommendation lists below are organized alphabetically by the author/editor’s last name.

General Interest


Marcus Baynes-Rock, Crocodile Undone: The Domestication of Australia’s Fauna

Jeremy Black, Military Strategy: A Global History

Brilliant and Kennedy, eds., World War II and the West It Wrought

Katherine Chandler, Unmanning: How Humans, Machines and Media Perform Drone Warfare

Amy Hildreth Chen, Placing Papers: The American Literary Archives Market

Rebecca Coleman, Glitterworlds: The Future Politics of a Ubiquitous Thing

Jerusha O. Connor, The New Student Activists: The Rise of Neoactivism on College Campuses

Hamid Dabashi, The Emperor Is Naked: On the Inevitable Demise of the Nation State

Federico Finkelstein, A Brief History of Fascist Lies

Sherrin Frances, Libraries amid Protest: Books, Organizing, and Global Activism

Franke, et al., eds., Parapolitics: Cultural Freedom and the Cold War

Kevin M. Gannon, Radical Hope: A Teaching Manifesto

Christine Hong, A Violent Peace: Race and U.S. Militarism in Cold War Asia and the Pacific

Amitava Kumar, Every Day I Write the Book: Notes on Style

Tess Lea, Wild Policy: Indigeneity and the Unruly Logics of Intervention

Susanna Lee, Detectives in the Shadows: A Hard-Boiled History

Aurélien Mondon and Aaron Winter, Reactionary Democracy: The Rise of the Far Right and the Myth of Populism

Sianne Ngai, Theory of the Gimmick: Aesthetics Judgment and Capitalist Form

Joshua O. Reno, Military Waste: The Unexpected Consequences of Permanent War Readiness

Jenny Rice, Awful Archives: Conspiracy Theory, Rhetoric, and Acts of Evidence

Macklin Smith and Aurko Joshi, Rhymes in the Flow: How Rappers Flip the Beat

Kyong-Min Son, The Eclipse of the Demos: The Cold War and the Crisis of Democracy before Neoliberalism

Kristina Spohr, Post Wall, Post Square: How Bush, Gorbachev, Kohl, and Deng Shaped the World after 1989

Felicia Angeja Viator, To Live and Defy in LA: How Gangsta Rap Changed America

Bradley C.S. Watson, Progressivism: The Strange History of a Radical Idea

Daniel Worden, Neoliberal Nonfictions: The Documentary Aesthetic from Joan Didion to Jay-Z

Helen Yaffe, We Are Cuba! How a Revolutionary People Have Survived in a Post-Soviet World

Her Stories: Daytime Soap Opera and US Television History

Wild Blue Media: Thinking through Seawater

race and whiteness


Katharine Bausch, He Thinks He’s Down: White Appropriations of Black Masculinities in the Civil Rights Era (UBC)

Harris Beider and Kusminder Chahal, The Other America: White Working Class Perspectives on Race, Identity and Change (Policy Press / Bristol)

Russell Cobb, The Great Oklahoma Swindle: Race, Religion, and Lies in America’s Weirdest State (Bison / Nerbaska)

Correa-Cabrera, Konrad, and Artibise, eds., North American Borders in Comparative Perspective (Arizona)

Lisa M. Corrigan, Black Feelings: Race and Affect in the Long Sixties (Mississippi)

Lucas A. Dietrich, Writing across the Color Line: U.S. Print Culture and the Rise of Ethnic Literature, 1877-1920 (Massachusetts)

Diverlus, Hudson, and Ware, eds., Until We Are Free: Reflections on Black Lives Matter in Canada (Regina)

Adam H. Domby, The False Cause: Fraud, Fabrication, and White Supremacy in Confederate Memory (Virginia)

Eden Wales Freedman, Reading Testimony, Witnessing Trauma: Confronting Race, Gender, and Violence in American Literature (Mississippi)

Kim Gallon, Pleasure in the News: African American Readership and Sexuality in the Black Press (Illinois)

Justin Gomer, White Balance: How Hollywood Shaped Colorblind Ideology and Undermined Civil Rights (North Carolina)

Beverly Greene Bond and Susan Eva O’Donovan, eds., Remembering the Memphis Massacre: An American Story (Georgia)

Margaret A. Hagerman, White Kids: Growing Up with Privilege in a Racially Divided America (NYU)

Benjamin M. Han, Beyond the Black and White TV: Asian and Latin American Spectacle in Cold War America (Rutgers)

Gerald Horne, The Dawning of the Apocalypse: The Roots of Slavery, White Supremacy, Settler Colonialism, and Capitalism in the Long Sixteenth Century (NYU)

Zakiyyah Iman Jackson, Becoming Human: Matter and Meaning in an Antiblack World (NYU)

Khyati Y. Joshi, White Christian Privilege: The Illusion of Religious Equality in America (NYU)

Casey Ryan Kelly, Apocalypse Man: The Death Drive and the Rhetoric of White Masculine Victimhood (Ohio State)

Lauren R. Kerby, Saving History: How White Evangelicals Tour the Nation’s Capital and Redeem a Christian America (North Carolina)

Lloyd L. Lee, Diné Identity in a Twenty-First-Century World (Arizona)

Darryl Leroux, Distorted Descent: White Claims to Indigenous Identity (Manitoba)

Lethabo King, Navarro, and Smith, eds., Otherwise Worlds: Against Settler Colonialism and Anti-Blackness (Duke)

Kendra Marston, Postfeminist Whiteness: Problematising Melancholic Burden in Contemporary Hollywood (Edinburgh)

Clifford Mason, Macbeth in Harlem: Black Theater in America from the Beginning to Raisin in the Sun (Rutgers)

Claudia Milian, LatinX (Minnesota)

Tom Mould, Overthrowing the Queen: Telling Stories of Welfare in America (Indiana)

Edward Onaci, Free the Land: The Republic of New Afrika and the Pursuit of a Black Nation-State (North Carolina)

Khary Oronde Polk, Contagions of Empire: Scientific Racism, Sexuality, and Black Military Workers Abroad, 1898–1948 (North Carolina)

Ana Yolanda Ramos-Zayas, Parenting Empires: Class, Whiteness, and the Moral Economy of Privilege in Latin America (Duke)

Anne Warfield Rawls and Waverly Duck, Tacit Racism (Chicago)

Dylan Robinson, Hungry Listening: Resonant Theory for Indigenous Sound Studies (Minnesota)

Jeremy Schipper and Nyasha Junior, Black Samson: The Untold Story of an American Icon (Oxford)

Sigal, Tortorici, and Whitehead, eds., Ethnopornography: Sexuality, Colonialism, and Archival Knowledge (Duke)

James Smethurst, Brick City Vanguard: Amiri Baraka, Black Music, Black Modernity (Massachusetts)

Terry Smith, Whitelash: Unmasking White Grievance at the Ballot Box (Cambridge)

Ramon E. Soto-Crespo, The White Trash Menace and Hemispheric Fiction (Ohio)

LaFleur Stephens-Dougan, Race to the Bottom: How Racial Appeals Work in American Politics (Chicago)

Quito Swan, Pauulu’s Diaspora: Black Internationalism and Environmental Justice (Florida)

Matthew Teutsch, ed., Rediscovering Frank Yerby: Critical Essays (Mississippi)

Simón Ventura Trujillo, Land Uprising: Native Story Power and the Insurgent Horizons of Latinx Indigeneity (Arizona)

E. James West, Ebony Magazine and Lerone Bennett Jr.: Popular Black History in Postwar America (Illinois)

Hollywood Diplomacy: Film Regulation, Foreign Relations, and East Asian Representations

American studies


Religious Intolerance, America, and the World: A History of Forgetting and Remembering

Death at the Edges of Empire: Fallen Soldiers, Cultural Memory, and the Making of an American Nation, 1863-1921

High on God: How Megachurches Won the Heart of America

Taking America Back for God: Christian Nationalism in the United States

Authentically Orthodox: A Tradition-Bound Faith in American Life

Taking Leave, Taking Liberties: American Troops on the World War II Home Front

Taking Children: A History of American Terror

A Nation Like All Others: A Brief History of American Foreign Relations

Just Like Us: The American Struggle to Understand Foreigners

Threat Of Dissent: A History Of Ideological Exclusion And Deportation In The United States

How the South Won the Civil War: Oligarchy, Democracy, and the Continuing Fight for the Soul of America

The Romance of American Communism

The Peculiar Afterlife of Slavery: The Chinese Worker and the Minstrel Form

How the Tea Party Captured the GOP: Insurgent Factions in American Politics

Hillbilly Maidens, Okies, and Cowgirls: Women’s Country Music, 1930-1960

The Year of Peril: America in 1942

Such Splendid Prisons: Diplomatic Detainment in America during World War II

Sabotaged: Dreams of Utopia in Texas

Roadside Americans: The Rise and Fall of Hitchhiking in a Changing Nation

Undelivered: From the Great Postal Strike of 1970 to the Manufactured Crisis of the U.S. Postal Service

Free Justice: A History of the Public Defender in Twentieth-Century America

Calamity: The Many Lives of Calamity Jane

Under the Red White and Blue: Patriotism, Disenchantment and the Stubborn Myth of the Great Gatsby

An Independent Empire: Diplomacy and War in the Making of the United States

Shields of the Republic: The Triumph and Peril of America’s Alliances

When Sunflowers Bloomed Red: Kansas and the Rise of Socialism in America

Land, God, and Guns: Settler Colonialism and Masculinity in the American Heartland

The People’s Porn: A History of Handmade Pornography in America

News Parade: The American Newsreel and the World as Spectacle

Visualizing Fascism: The Twentieth-Century Rise of the Global Right

A People’s History of Detroit

Breakaway Americas: The Unmanifest Future of the Jacksonian United States

Every Home a Fortress: Cold War Fatherhood and the Family Fallout Shelter

Ecologies of Harm: Rhetorics of Violence in the United States

Midcentury Suspension: Literature and Feeling in the Wake of World War II

American Zealots: Inside Right-Wing Domestic Terrorism

Fearing the Worst: How Korea Transformed the Cold War

Demagogue for President: The Rhetorical Genius of Donald Trump

Manan Desai, The United States of India: Anticolonial Literature and Transnational Refraction (Temple)

Richard W. Maass, The Picky Eagle: How Democracy and Xenophobia Limited U.S. Territorial Expansion (Cornell)

Hubert Villeneuve, Teaching Anticommunism: Fred Schwarz and American Postwar Conservatism (McGill-Queen’s)

Colleen Woods, Freedom Incorporated: Anticommunism and Philippine Independence in the Age of Decolonization (Cornell)


SF / Fantasy / Horror Studies

Pacific Futures: Past and Present

Spiral to the Stars: Mvskoke Tools of Futurity

Pluriversal Politics: The Real and the Possible

Invoking Hope: Theory and Utopia in Dark Times

Jordan Peele’s Get Out: Political Horror

The Twilight Zone (TV Milestones)

Twin Peaks (TV Milestones)

The American Robot: A Cultural History

Planet Auschwitz: Holocaust Representation in Science Fiction and Horror Film and Television

Becoming George Orwell: Life and Letters, Legend and Legacy

Intimate Alien: The Hidden Story of the UFO

Extraterrestrials

Tolkien’s Cosmology: Divine Beings and Middle-earth

Weird Westerns: Race, Gender, Genre

The Metabolist Imagination: Visions of the City in Postwar Japanese Architecture and Science Fiction

Furious Feminisms: Alternate Routes on Mad Max: Fury Road

Space Is the Place: The Lives and Times of Sun Ra

Science Fiction

The Microgenre: A Quick Look at Small Culture

The Routledge Companion to Cyberpunk Culture

Household Horror: Cinematic Fear and the Secret Life of Everyday Objects

Harry Potter and Beyond: On J. K. Rowling’s Fantasies and Other Fictions

The Bloomsbury Handbook to Octavia E. Butler

Utopia and Its Discontents: Plato to Atwood

Imagining the Unimaginable: Speculative Fiction and the Holocaust

Latinx Rising: An Anthology of Latinx Science Fiction and Fantasy

Science Fiction and Psychology

Science Fiction and Climate Change

Biology and Manners: Essays on the Worlds and Works of Lois McMaster Bujold

Final Frontiers: Science Fiction and Techno-Science in Non-Aligned India

Fighting for the Future: Essays on Star Trek: Discovery

The Squid Cinema From Hell: Kinoteuthis Infernalis and the Emergence of Chthulumedia


Comics Studies