We know how hard it is to shop for gifts for your parents, or your sister's fiancé, or that anti-social co-worker you picked for secret santa. So we've made it easy with our top picks from the Verso catalog for everyone in your life.
Plus every title is 50% off with FREE shipping for the rest of December!
For more inspiration check out our FREE e-book sampler with highlights from our 2014 list, including pieces from Arundhati Roy, Benjamin Kunkel, Gabriella Coleman, Nadya Tolokonnikova, Shlomo Sand, Walter Benjamin and Slavoj Žižek.
HOW TO RADICALIZE THE BABY BOOMERS IN YOUR LIFE
A Colossal Wreck: A Road Trip Through Political Scandal, Corruption and American Culture
by Alexander Cockburn
“A Colossal Wreck provides ample evidence for Cockburn’s standing as one of the left’s most perceptive and entertaining commentators.” –Guardian
“Alive on every page … a stay against boredom.” –New York Times
The Secret World of Oil
by 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
"Ken Silverstein's sharp investigative reporting has again dragged a cast of shady operators into the public eye with his must-read book." –Amy Goodman, host & executive producer, Democracy Now!
A Philosophy of Walking
by Frédéric Gros
Illustrated by Clifford Harper
"A passionate affirmation of the simple life, and joy in simple things. And it's beautifully written: clear, simple, precise." –Observer
"This short, simple and profound book... will be read and re-read." –Laurence Coupe, Times Higher Education
Discovery of the World: A Political Awakening in the Shadow of Musolini
by Luciana Castellina
"A chronicle, both unique and extraordinary, of Castellina's journey...demonstrate[s] that all must make personal sacrifices to justify the pursuit of a collective goal and a more just world." –Warscapes
FOR THE URBAN PLANNING/ARCHITECTURE LOVER
Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture
by Justin McGuirk
"Provocative and beautifully crafted."
–Richard Sennett, author of Together
"In this inspiring book, McGuirk goes right to the heart of the dilemmas facing architecture and cities today. With its powerful prose and deep insights, Radical Cities reboots the potential of architecture to have social and political meaning..." –Ricky Burdett, Director LSE Cities
The Power of Infrastructure Space
by Keller Easterling
"An extraordinary guidebook to the politics of infrastructure in the contemporary world." –Stephen Graham, author of Cities Under Siege
"An essential text for anyone with a stake in the built environment, architect and citizen alike." – Architectural Review
Place-Hacking the City
by Bradley L. Garrett
"Volatile and extraordinary ... a gonzo road trip."
"A no-nonsense, high-adrenaline, fast-twitch report that requires us to think about the city in new ways." –Iain Sinclair
FOR THE FILM BUFF
The Intervals of Cinema
by Jacques Rancière
An essential analysis of cinema from one of the great figures of French philosophy
"Rancière is a passionate and acute cinephile."
–Alberto Toscano, Film Quarterly
"Rancière's writings offer one of the few conceptualizations of how we are to continue to resist." –Slavoj Žižek
Desire Unlimited: The Cinema of Pedro Almodóvar
by Paul Julian Smith
"Finely observed, compelling." –Publishers Weekly
"A thoroughly stimulating approach to an inventive, sophisticated filmmaker." – Independent
by Pier Paolo Pasolini
Preface by Alain Badiou
Though Pasolini fans might lament the film that never was, Saint Paul, in its unfinished state, remains a burning polemic open to questions of our day." – Times Literary Supplement
"[an] astute introduction and crisp translation of this surprisingly contemporary screenplay." –Guernica
FOR THE LOVER OF THEORY
image: Colby Keller on Twitter
Willing Slaves of Capital: Spinoza and Marx on Desire
by Frédéric Lordon
"This ambitious but always lucid book aims to reopen the conceptual framework of capitalism." –Le Monde
"Frédéric Lordon is one of the most audacious contemporary left-wing economists." –Le Nouvel Observateur
The Critique of Everyday Life: The One-Volume Edition
by Henri Lefebvre
Lefebvre's classic analysis of daily life under capitalism in one complete volume
"A savage critique of consumerist society."
"One of the great French intellectual activists of the twentieth century." –David Harvey
The New Way of the World: On Neoliberal Society
by Pierre Dardot & Christian Laval
"The best modern realization of Foucault's pioneering approach."–Philip Mirowski, author of Never Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste
"Erudite and provocative." – The Los Angeles Review of Books
FOR THE CLOSETED COMMUNIST
Rethinking communism for the twenty-first century.
Check out the entire Pocket Communism series with titles from Alain Badiou, Slavoj Žižek, Bruno Bosteels, and Boris Groys, all for 50% off!
A Companion to Marx's Capital
by David Harvey
The radical geographer guides us through the classic text of political economy.
"Harvey is a scholarly radical; his writing is free of journalistic clichés, full of facts and carefully thought-through ideas." –Richard Sennett
"Without a doubt one of the two best companions to Marx's [Capital]."– Joshua Clover, Nation
FOR THE AESTHETE
by Walter Benjamin
"There has been no more original, no more serious critic and reader in our time." –George Steiner
"[An] ebullient compendium." –Publishers Weekly
"A complex and brilliant writer." –J.M. Coetzee
by Nanni Balestrini
Introduction by Umberto Eco
"You cannot read this novel, unless I lend it to you, as each of the copies Verso publish this month contain different iterations of the same text.." –Rhizome
"Balestrini's subtle, understated language...provokes plenty of thought." –Juliet Jacques, New Statesmen
FOR THE BUDDING REVOLUTIONARY
Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous
by Gabriella Coleman
"Easily the best book on Anonymous." —Julian Assange
Essential reading." –Glenn Greenwald
"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
Esquire recommends Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy for: "Your nephew who posts horrible things on 4chan all day."
They Can't Represent Us!: Reinventing Democracy from Greece To Occupy
by Dario Azzellini and Marina Sitrin
How the new global movements embody a radical conception of democracy.
"A fierce book, a hopeful book, a brilliant book, and a necessary book, in this age when libraries are also arsenals of direct democracy." –Rebecca Solnit
"Clarifies some of the primary challenges facing movements today and helps us see paths beyond them." –Michael Hardt
The Communist Manifesto: A Modern Edition
by Frederick Engels and Karl Marx
“As a force for change, its influence has been surpassed only by the Bible. As a piece of writing, it is a masterpiece.”
The Communist Horizon
by Jodi Dean
“This is what everyone engaged in today’s struggles for emancipation needs: a unique combination of theoretical stringency and a realistic assessment of our predicament. To anyone who continues to dwell in illusions about liberal democracy, one should simply say: read Jodi Dean’s new book!” – Slavoj Žižek
Comradely Greetings: The Prison Letters of Nadya and Slavoj
by Nadya Tolokonnikova and Slavoj Žižek
In this extraordinary exchange of letters, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, imprisoned for taking part in Pussy Riot’s anti-Putin performance, and Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek discuss artistic subversion, political activism, and the future of democracy via the ideas of Hegel, Deleuze, Nietzsche, and even Laurie Anderson. This book is so tiny it will fit into the smallest of stockings!
by Valerie Solanas. Introduction by Avital Ronell
SCUM Manifesto was considered one of the most outrageous, violent and certifiably crazy tracts when it first appeared in 1968. In this new edition Avital Ronell reconsiders Solanas in light of her social milieu, revealing a radical feminist analysis light-years ahead of its time. Believe us when we say that you won't be disappointed to find this wrapped up under the tree.
Walter Benjamin's Archive: Images, Texts, Signs
by Walter Benjamin
This absorbing selection of Walter Benjamin's personal manuscripts, images, and documents is produced in association with the Benjamin Archive. A rich and detailed portrait for any Walter Benjamin fan, this book includes carefully laid-out manuscripts; photographs of his home, arcades, Russian toys; picture postcards from Tuscany and the Balearics; meticulous and unconventional registers, card indexes and catalogs; notebooks, in which every single square centimeter is covered; a collation of his son's first words and sentences; riddles and enigmatic Sibyls.
Masks of Anarchy: The Story of a Radical Poem, from Percy Shelley to the Triangle Factory Fire
by Michael Demson
Masks of Anarchy tells the extraordinary story of Percy Shelley’s poem “The Masque of Anarchy,” from its conception in Italy and suppression in England to the moment it became a catalyst for protest among New York City workers a century later.
Mad Cow, Bird Flu, Global Village: The Art of Dan Perjovschi
by Dan Perjovschi
Acute and wickedly funny cartoons by MoMA/Tate-exhibited artist.
Che: A Graphic Biography
by Spain Rodriguez
“Spain is one of the true giants of the comics medium. He is a singular artist; his work is unmistakable.” – Joe Sacco
“Spain's take on Che is brilliant and radical.” – Art Spiegelman
Bohemians: A Graphic History
by David Berger and Paul Buhle
The countercultures that came to define bohemia spanned the Atlantic, encompassing Walt Whitman's Brooklyn and the Folies Bergère of Josephine Baker, Gertrude Stein's salons and the Manhattan clubs where Dizzy Gillespie made his name. Edited by Paul Buhle and David Berger, Bohemians is the graphic history of this movement and its illustrious figures.
by Laura Oldfield Ford
Savage Messiah collects the entire set of Laura Oldfield Ford’s fanzine to date. Part graphic novel, part artwork, the book is both an angry polemic against the marginalization of the city’s working class and an exploration of the cracks that open up in urban space.
The Wire Primers: A Guide to Modern Music
by Rob Young
A exciting guide to the core recordings of some of the most visionary and inspiring, subversive and radical musicians on the planet, past and present. Each chapter surveys the musical universe of a particular artist, group or genre by way of a contextualizing introduction and a thumbnail guide to the most essential recordings. Perfect for those wanting to dig below the surface of mainstream music.
Ryszard Kapuscinski: A Life
by Artur Domosławski
Artur Domosławski travels the globe, following in the globally renowned Polish journalist and writer footsteps, delving into his private conflicts and anxieties and discovering the relationships that were the catalyst for his unique style of ‘literary reportage’. The result is a compelling and uncompromising portrait of a conflicted and brilliant individual.
Hugo Chávez and the Bolivarian Revolution
by Richard Gott
“A colourful and readable account of Chávez’s background and beliefs.” - Financial Times
A revealing account of the leader at the forefront of Latin America’s socialist revolution, Richard Gott reflects on the achievements of the Bolivarian revolution, and the challenges that lie ahead.
FICTION / LITERATURE
From A to X: A Story in Letters
by John Berger
A beautifully imagined story of love and resistance, by one of the foremost novelists of our age.
“An exquisitely written and constructed novel.” – Sunday Times
“Wrought with a miniaturist's precision.” – New York Times
by Wu Ming
From the authors of Q, a genre-breaking reimagining of the Revolutionary War.
“Unspools mesmerisingly like an old Hollywood movie.” – Guardian
“A highly compelling epic of great beauty and power.” – Daily Mail
Altai: A Novel
by 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
“Their books sizzle with a kind of lefty jazz: they’re linguistically and culturally hip, historically astute, with a heart worn challengingly on the sleeve.” – Todd McEwan, Guardian
Beauty and the Inferno: Essays
by Roberto Saviano
“It is good to be reminded of the raw bravery of the Savianos of this world and to salute them for sacrifices they have made in their challenges to power.” – Duncan Campbell, Guardian
“I feel humble, almost insignificant, faced with the dignity and the courage of the writer and journalist Roberto Saviano, the man who has mastered the art of living.” – José Saramago
“He never pulls his punches, his message is incredibly important, and the facts he includes—such as the increase in cancer rates due to the illegal dumping of toxic waste—are like bombshells.” – Tobias Jones, Sunday Times
The Lives of Things
by José Saramago
“The most gifted novelist . . . in the world today.” – Harold Bloom
“Saramago is a writer, like Faulkner, so confident of his resources and ultimate destination that he can bring any improbability to life.” – John Updike, New Yorker
“No one writes quite like Saramago, so solicitous and yet so magnificently free. He works as though cradling a thing of magic.” – Steven Poole, Guardian
by José Saramago
A lyrical and thought-provoking record of the last year in the life of the Nobel Prize–winning novelist.
“Fascinating and smart and provocative, and a lot of fun to dip into.” – New York Times
“In the craft of the sentence, José Saramago is one of the great originals. His prose is a voice that envelops all voices: it is like the universe’s immanent murmur ... No one writes quite like Saramago, so solicitous and yet so magnificently free.” – Steven Poole, Guardian
Writing in an Age of Silence
by Sara Paretsky
A revealing look at the power of speaking out, Writing in an Age of Silence describes Paretski's coming of age in a time of great possibility, during the civil rights movement, the peace movement, and the women's movement. A moving call to action, Writing in an Age of Silence chronicles the social changes that have shaped contemporary America, and mirrors a desire for freedom, both personal and political, that many Americans will relate to today.