Enchanting tales

Betsy K Glory who lives on an island, “ that has been left off the map of the world” among whose native inhabitants is an ex-princes cursed into shape of a toad by her giantess sister. Bosty’s father an ice-cream maker and her mother a mermaid. Princess Albee’s only hope being restored to human form…

Peasants who became millionaires overnight as oil gushed from their lands

Banine describes Caucasus  as a region caught between empires and epochs between Christian West and  the Muslim East, between Tsarist autocracy, Bolshevik revolution,  between tradition, superstition and clan. Banine writes about her childhood, her grandfather was one of Baku’s overnight millionaires, a farmer who had the fortune to find oil in his land, and her…

Politics of 1.4bn people in democratic India

Ruchir Sharma talks to farmers, shopkeepers and CEOs from Rajasthan to Tamil Nadu and interview both Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi offering intimate view inside the lives and minds of India’s people. Sharma also explains how the complex forces of family, caste and community, economics and development, money and corruption Bollywood and Godmen, have conspired…

3000 years of Arab history

 Arab is generally applied to over 400m people living in the belt of territories spanning  from Morocco to the Gulf.  But for most of history its use was limited to nomadic groups who lived beyond the reach of settled society, and people regarded by civilised peoples  such as Greeks or Chinese – as barbarians. What…

Capitalism is the best economic system

Torben Iversen, a Danish political science and professor and David Soskice, British economist and professor at the London School of Economics addresses does capitalism conflict with democracy with a resounding “no”, Not only capitalism work, it is also the only economic system that works and insists that democracy and the advanced market economy are symbiotic.…

Obama’s autobiography has already sold more than 10 million copies

Michelle Obama’s autobiography has sold more than 10m copies to date according to the former first lady’s publisher Thomas Rabe CEO of 180-year-old German media group Bertelsmann. Penguin Random House, the publishing arm of Bertelsmann, hailed won a fierce bidding war for Barrack and Michelle Obama’s autobiographies in 2017, paying over $67m for a two…

Intriguing vision

In the first book from Irish writer Kevin Breathnach highlights photography, film and literature and long autobiographical pieces that describes coming of age and recalls the spirit of Irish Modernism. The rise of the “Lyric essay, a hybrid of memoir, prose and poetry and cultural criticism that the American polemicist David Shields has argued is…

Unregulated capitalism is bad for women

This book began life as an article in the New York Times, recalls women’s lives in the Soviet bloc between the end of the war and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Their labour was needed, so the state enabled them to work by paying for the work that women do: creches, holiday care and…

Socio-economic consequences of globalisation

Economist Raghuram Rajan’s The Third Pillar, describes an ongoing struggle for balance between the three building blocks of a good society Market, State and Community. Rajan tells us what’s needed to shift our prospects in favour of technological progress that empowers and enriches the many, away from political anger and estrangement. Rajan was awarded the Director’s…