Home > Book Reviews > Hirschman, Rex and 18 other mind-changers

Hirschman, Rex and 18 other mind-changers

Albert Hirschman has died.  I found his Exit Voice Loyalty an absolute eye-opener.  His passing follows a year after that of John Rex, whose work on the long term effects of racial discrimination made me look at post-war British politics totally differently.

So a propos of absolutely nothing, other than in Albert and John’s honour, here’s my top 20 books/papers (inclusive Rex and Hirschman) that have made me change my mind or opened my mind up to new ways of looking at stuff in recent years.  That is, these are not book that confirmed the direction I was headed – there’s plenty of those, and they have their own value  -  but ones that made me stop and change course.

Many of them are not new, but they’re quite new to me, as I only came to reading late in life.

1.  Michael Lipsky, Street level Bureaucrats

2. Hannah Arendt, On Violence

3.  Franz Kafka, Amerika

4. Charles Tilly, Coercion, Capital and European States, A.D.990-1990

5. EP Thompson, The making of the English Working Class

6. EHH Green, The Crisis of Conservatism

7.  Andrew Sayer, Method in Social Science

8.  Susan Faludi, sStiffed: The Betrayal of the Modern Man

9.  Hans Faluda, A Small Circus

10.  Bernhard Schlink, The reader

11.  Hilary Waingwright, Labour: a tale of two parties

12. Christopher Lasch, The Culture of Narcisssm

13.  Laclau and Mouffe, Hegemony and Socialist strategy

14.  Peter Drucker, Doctrine and Ethos in the Labour Party

15.  Jean Baudrillard, The Lucidity Pact

16. Pierre Bourdieu, Acts of Resistance: Against the New Myths of Our Time

17. Colin Hay, Why We Hate Politics

18. Philip Morgan, Fascism in Europe

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