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2014 Verso Highlights!


Politics, Feminism, Philosophy, Memoir - it's all covered here in our 2014 end-of-year highlights. 

Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous
Gabriella Coleman

“Coleman reveals the group in all its complexity ... this in-depth account might leave readers in awe of the sheer scope of the group and how much they have achieved while shunning the traditional trappings of leaders, hierarchy and individual fame-seeking.”
 – Financial Times

“a long-awaited and compelling study of the activist collective… Anyone interested in Anonymous, or the shape of protest in the age of the internet, will find abundant new details and smart insight here.”
– Jamie Bartlett, Guardian

The Seasons of Trouble: Life Amid the Ruins of Sri Lanka’s Civil War

Rohini Mohan

“Poetic ... a thoroughly absorbing book.”
– Economist

“devastatingly good. Rohini Mohan’s intimately rendered account of the brutal end-game and unfinished aftermath of Sri Lanka’s civil war is breathtakingly well-told. Haunting and unforgettable.”
– Jon Lee Anderson, New Yorker

Capitalism: A Ghost Story
Arundhati Roy

“Democracy hasn’t eradicated the country's caste system. It has entrenched and modernised it” - Prospect

“Arundhati Roy has thrown herself into political activism – raising hackles among India’s growing bourgeoisie with fierce polemics against capitalism” - Guardian

Annihilation of Caste: The Annotated Critical Edition

by B.R. Ambedkar. Edited by S. Anand. Introduction by Arundhati Roy

Annihilation of Caste has to be read ... No Hindu who prizes his faith above life itself can afford to underrate the importance of this indictment.” – M.K. Gandhi

The Muslims Are Coming!: Islamophobia, Extremism, and the Domestic War on Terror
Arun Kundnani

"Arun Kundnani is one of Britain's best political writers, neither hectoring nor drily academic but compelling and sharply intelligent.” - Robin Yassin-Kassab, Guardian

“Kundnani’s argument is compelling in its dissection of governments’ disproportional responses.”
– Tanjil Rashid, Financial Times 

The Secret World of Oil

Ken Silverstein

“An engaging journey through the sector’s murkiest crevices, shot through with ill-concealed disgust at the corruption at its heart.” - Financial Times

“[A] fast-paced, colorful exposé” - The Nation


Private Island: Why Britain Now Belongs to Someone Else

James Meek

“an unputdownable book that will leave you with a lasting sense of unease.” - John Gray, Guardian

“an energetic and colourfully told polemic against privatization… a book to read if you want vivid details of what went wrong” - Financial Times

“Meek bombards the reader with compelling facts, but he does so with panache. After all, how many authors could turn a passage about ownership of the water industry into a page-turner” - Observer

Inequality and the 1%
Danny Dorling

“Dorling asks questions about inequality that fast become unswervable: can we afford the superrich? Can society prosper? Can we realize our potential?” - Zoe Williams, Guardian

“Takes an empirical look at how lives of the richest damage the rest of society.” - Melissa Benn, New Statesman (Books of the Year)

The Enemy Within: The Secret War Against the Miners

Seumas Milne

“The definitive account of the strike—the best book on the Thatcher era.” – Naomi Klein

“Riveting. It knocks spots off the usual ‘whodunnit.’” – Guardian


Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work

Melissa Gira Grant

"A persuasive manifesto… Underneath Grant’s strategically inclusive argument lurks a harder political critique of the transformation of politics and economics since the 1970s.” – London Review of Books

“An important contribution to debates around sex and work ... deserves to be read.” – Nina Power, author of One-Dimensional Woman

Women’s Oppression Today: The Marxist/Feminist Encounter
Michèle Barrett

“This book is a school of thought.” – Frigga Haug, Das Argument

“Historically significant and deeply relevant to today’s discussions, Barrett’s interrogation of Marxism, feminism, patriarchy and the state is serious yet accessible: this is a key text in the history (and present) of both Marxism and feminism.” – Nina Power, author of One-Dimensional Woman

Out of Time: The Pleasures and the Perils of Ageing New in paperback!
Lynne Segal

“So what does it mean to age gracefully? How is this done? These questions are at the centre of a thoughtful new book from Lynne Segal”
– Economist

“A powerful manifesto for dealing with the march of time.”
– Yvonne Roberts, Observer


Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture
Justin McGuirk

“an intriguing picture of an activist urbanism and architecture that has made a real difference.” - Edwin Heathcote, Financial Times

“Justin McGuirk's fascinating study shows that Latin American cities have much to teach the world's architects.” – Observer

Explore Everything: Place-Hacking the City New in paperback!
Bradley L. Garrett

“It’s hard not to admire these explorers. Or Garrett himself, who says he wrote part of the book on a laptop while sitting in a crane overlooking Aldgate East.”
– Sukhdev Sandhu, Financial Times

"For Garrett, physical exploration is merely the outward manifestation of a deeper philosophical inquiry. The theoretical DNA of much of his work traces back to the concept of 'psychogeography.'” – GQ

Extrastatecraft: The Power of Infrastructure Space
Keller Easterling

“A provocative study of infrastructure, the operating system governing everyday life.” – Jay Owens, Icon


Radio Benjamin

Walter Benjamin

"There has been no more original, no more serious critic and reader in our time.” – George Steiner

“The German critic was not only a theorist of the media – he was a gifted broadcaster as well” – Financial Times

A Philosophy of Walking
Frédéric Gros

“A passionate affirmation of the simple life, and joy in simple things. And it's beautifully written: clear, simple, precise.” – Observer

“Frédéric Gros asks why so many of our most productive writers and philosophers – Rousseau, Kant, Rimbaud, Robert Louis Stevenson, Nietzsche, Jack Kerouac – have also been indefatigable walkers.”– Christopher Caldwell, Financial Times

Lacan: In Spite of Everything
Élisabeth Roudinesco

“An extraordinary book about the most flamboyant French neo-Freudian of the twentieth century.” – The Times

Absolute Recoil: Towards a New Foundation of Dialectical Materialism
Slavoj Žižek

“Like Socrates on steroids: Žižek is both breathtakingly perceptive and outrageously irresponsible.” – Terry Eagleton, Guardian

Comradely Greetings: The Prison Letters of Nadya and Slavoj

Nadya Tolokonnikova and Slavoj Žižek

“An extraordinary exchange of letters.” - Guardian

The Critique of Everyday Life: The One-Volume Edition
Henri Lefebvre

“One of the great French intellectual activists of the twentieth century.”
– David Harvey

“The last great classical philosopher.”
– Fredric Jameson

The Intervals of Cinema
Jacques Rancière

“Rancière’s writings offer one of the few conceptualizations of how we are to continue to resist.” - Slavoj Žižek

The Rhetorical Foundations of Society
Ernesto Laclau

"This fascinating collection of essays, infused throughout with this spirit, is Laclau at his best!" - Yannis Stavrakakis

Liberalism: A Counter-History
Domenico Losurdo

“A brilliant exercise in unmasking liberal pretensions, surveying over three centuries with magisterial command of the sources.” – Financial Times

Left Hemisphere: Mapping Critical Theory Today New in paperback!
Razmig Keucheyan

“Explains the key ideas, and the contradictions within them, of authors who are often cited but rarely read.” – Le Monde diplomatique

“Written with intelligence and clarity.” – Libération


"A golden treasury of theory." – Eric Banks, Bookforum

"Verso's beautifully designed Radical Thinkers series, which brings together seminal works by leading left-wing intellectuals, is a sophisticated blend of theory and thought." – New Statesman

The stylish books in our iconic Radical Thinkers series offer insights from the world’s most daring thinkers. Set 8, published this year, features Max Stirner, Alfred Schmidt, Edward W. Said, Jacques Rancière, Ernesto Laclau, Chantal Mouffe, Gillian Rose, Etienne Balibar, Jean Baudrillard, Louis Althusser, Nicos Poulantzas, Georg Lukács and Sheila Rowbotham.


Utopia or Bust: A Guide to the Present Crisis

Benjamin Kunkel

“Playful and unfailingly lucid...the book is one of the most enjoyable pieces of Marxist criticism in many years.” – The Nation

“Six elegantly turned essays on contemporary Marxist thinkers” – Prospect

The New Way of the World: On Neoliberal Society
Pierre Dardot and Christian Laval

“To understand these debates [on neoliberalism], the book by Christian Laval and Pierre Dardot on the ‘neoliberal society’ offers us analytical keys. This monument of scholarship draws on the history of ideas, philosophy and sociology.” - Le Monde

Buying Time: The Delayed Crisis of Democratic Capitalism
Wolfgang Streeck

“Streeck's new book, Buying Time, argues that ever since the 1970s, governments in the west have been 'buying time' for the existing social and political order … a timely corrective.” – Larry Elliott, Guardian


The Idea of Israel: A History of Power and Knowledge

Ilan Pappe

“Pappé places Zionism under an uncompromising lens… he advocates a peaceful, humanist and socialist alternative to the Zionist idea in the form of a binational state with equal rights for all its citizens” – Avi Shlaim, Guardian

“Along with the late Edward Said, Ilan Pappe is the most eloquent writer of Palestinian history.” - New Statesman

How I Stopped Being a Jew
Shlomo Sand

“Sand asks the question: what, in this day and age, exactly is a secular Jew? elegant and passionately felt” – Will Self, Guardian

“persuasive arguments against his [Sand’s] country’s myths of identity” – Times Higher Education


A People's History of Scotland
Chris Bambery

"It's to be hoped that Bambery's steady insistence on social justice as a higher political end, above party or nationalism, remains audible." - Herald

“In telling the stories of the ordinary footsoldiers in the Radical War of 1820, of the cotton spinners’ strike of 1837 and of the miners’ struggles from 1840 to 1984, Bambery offers a Scottish version of EP Thompson’s The Making of the English Working Class” – Scotsman

Bohemians: A Graphic History

David Berger and Paul Buhle

“This collection of marvelously drawn stories pays tribute to the free thinkers who’ve moved against society’s grain and turned their backs on convention. Engaging, informative, and inspiring.” - Joe Sacco, author of Palestine

A People's History of the French Revolution

Eric Hazan

“A riveting popular history.” – Spectator

“Amid the intellectual murkiness of the European scene, a few bright flames are burning: as witness the work of Eric Hazan.” – New Left Review

Seizing Freedom: Slave Emancipation and Liberty for All
David R. Roediger

Seizing Freedom persuasively documents the self-emancipation of the enslaved Black folk of the American South. A meticulously researched book, it offers close readings of verbal and visual texts, unfailingly attentive to issues of race, gender, and labor coming together and falling apart." – Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Columbia University



Nanni Balestrini

“The realisation of Balestrini's original, long-unfulfilled dream.” Guardian

“Balestrini’s subtle, understated language... provokes plenty of thought.”
– Juliet Jacques, New Statesman

“Balestrini's prophetic work presages our contemporary outsourcing of so much genius to the machines.”
– James Bridle, Observer

“The overall effect, chapter by chapter, can be mesmerising. There is no meaning but something like a dream of meaning.”
– London Review of Books

The Bourgeois: Between History and Literature New in paperback!
Franco Moretti

“The great iconoclast of literary criticism.”
– John Sutherland, Guardian

“Moretti is a passionate and astute scholar.”
– Jonathan Franzen, Financial Times

“Moretti is already famous in bookish circles for his data-centric approach to novels, which he graphs, maps, and charts ... if his new methods catch on, they could change the way we look at literary history.” – Wired

Altai: A Novel /
New in paperback!
Wu Ming

“Altai is a great historical thriller and the prose has all the surface glitter of the Grand Canal or the Golden Horn.” – Edward Stourton, Financial Times

“A triumph of swashbuckling storytelling, a historical romp.” Sunday Telegraph

Other Festive posts that you may wish to read:

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