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Subject: Political Science and International Relations

The Man who Killed Apartheid: The Life of Dimitri Tsafendas

Harris Dousemetzis, University of Durham and Gerry Loughran

ISBN: 978-1-64889-512-8
Availability: Pre-order
522pp. ¦ $74 £59 €69

On 6 September 1966, inside the House of Assembly in Cape Town, Dimitri Tsafendas stabbed to death Hendrik Verwoerd, South Africa’s Prime Minister and so-called “architect of apartheid.” Tsafendas was immediately arrested and before he had even been questioned by the authorities, they declared him a madman without any political motive for the killing. In the Cape Supreme Court Tsafendas was found unfit to stand trial on the grounds that he suffered from schizophrenia and that he had no political motive for killing Verwoerd. Tsafendas spent the next 28 years in prison, making him the longest-serving prisoner in South African history. For most of his incarnation, he was subjected to cruel and inhumane treatment by the prison authorities. Harris Dousemetzis’ groundbreaking research and story show in vivid detail that Tsafendas was a perfectly sane and deeply political person with a long history of political activism. He had fought in the Greek Civil War, was an active member of the anti-apartheid movement in Britain, and was imprisoned on several occasions by the Portuguese police because of his anti-colonialist activities in Mozambique. Tsafendas was rightly considered to be “the brains behind apartheid,” and told the police at the time that he was “disgusted” with his “racial policies,” so he decided to kill him as he hoped, that by “removing” him “a change of policy would take place.” Winner of the 2020 Fage and Oliver Prize by the UK African Studies Association, 'The Life of Dimitri Tsafendas' is an outstanding original scholarly work, which has exposed apartheid’s lies and changed South African History.

Forming a Global Community

Joseph de Rivera, Clark University

September 2022 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-516-6
Availability: In stock
256pp. ¦ $55 £43 €51

To address global problems such as pandemics, warming, economic inequality, mass migration, and widespread terrorism, Joseph de Rivera argues that we must form a global community. A community of eight billion humans is difficult to conceive. However, it can be imagined and created if we transform our understanding of who humans are and what ‘community’ entails. We can understand who persons are, how they are motivated, and how a community can be conceived in a way that offers an alternative to individualism and collectivism. The “mutualism” that is proposed provides a moral compass for navigating the challenges that confront us and encourages specific governing structures, political economies, and rituals that will further the formation of a global community. Based on the philosophical analysis of John Macmurray, the author’s argument relies on an extensive review of the current literature on self, personhood, emotional motivation, social identity, forms of community, and religious and secular rituals. Interdisciplinary in nature, it aims to direct philosophy and the social sciences to the challenges of globalism and the creation of a global community.

Thomas Jefferson in Paris: The Ministry of a Virginian “Looker-on”

M. Andrew Holowchak

July 2022 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-473-2
Availability: In stock
265pp. ¦ $75 £59 €70

Jefferson’s years in France as minister plenipotentiary were a time of large edification. He approached his ministry as a “looker on”: Jefferson, while in France, always kept a critical distance from events, so that he could measure and critically examine them from the perspective of a dispassionate natural philosopher. Being dispassionate, Jefferson was pulled into events only insofar as circumstances required him to do so. Yet his “adventures” from his critical distance (e.g., his trip to London to meet the king, his ventures in the salons of Paris, and his travels through Southern France, Northern Italy, the Rhineland, and the Netherlands) were many, and varied. He even, at times, lost his critical, looker-on perspective from distance as he allowed himself to become immersed in events, as in the case of his relationship with lovely Italian artist and musician Maria Cosway. This book is a portal into the mind of Thomas Jefferson, as looker-on, during his tenure in Paris. Why was Jefferson so eager to accept the ministry to Paris? What was his impression of the great city and its people while he stayed? What lessons, while in Paris, did he learn which he could transport to Virginia and his country? Those and other questions Holowchak aims to answer in this book.

The End of Western Hegemonies?

Edited by Marie-Josée Lavallée, University of Montréal

July 2022 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-468-8
Availability: In stock
419pp. ¦ $96 £76 €89

In the face of recent trends like growing authoritarianism and xenophobic nationalism, the rise of the Far Right, the explosion of economic and social inequalities, heightened geopolitical contest and global capitalism’s endless crisis, and the impacts of shocks like the Covid-19 pandemic, discourses about the ‘decline of the West’ no more look like mere ruminations of a handful of cultural depressives and politically disillusioned; they sound increasingly realistic. This volume addresses this issue by mapping and analyzing the forms, mechanisms, strategies, and effects, in the past, the present, and the future, of Western hegemonies, namely, asymmetrical relations that bring advantages or, at least, secure the superiority of Western state and non-state actors in politics, economics, and culture broadly understood. Over the past decades and centuries, Westerners never ceased claiming supremacy in all these spheres. A host of these relations were initiated through colonialism and imperialism, and perpetuated through informal imperialism, but there are other channels: political interference, inequalities between countries, and attempts at affirming the supremacy of the so-called Western way of life was also secured through the military might and economic power of great Western actors. This book explores sites of Western hegemonies and contributes to understanding the mechanisms through which international hierarchies are formed and maintained. Bringing together the research of scholars from various fields in the humanities and social sciences, political science, international relations, political philosophy, sociology, history, postcolonial studies, criminology, and linguistics, this volume develops a multidisciplinary outlook on the issue of Western hegemonies that allows uncovering resemblances between various forms of asymmetrical relations and their mechanisms.

The Associational Counter-Revolution: The Spread of Restrictive Civil Society Laws in the World’s Strongest Democratic States

Chrystie Flournoy Swiney

February 2022 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-182-3
Availability: In stock
200pp. ¦ $45 £33 €38

In an increasing number of countries around the globe, representing all regime types, in all regions, with all levels of economic and military strength, civil society’s autonomy from the state, its defining feature, is diminishing. While a variety of tools are used to restrict civil society organizations’ (CSOs) independence from the state, an increasingly popular and dangerously effective vehicle for accomplishing this goal is the law. Through the passage of legislation that imposes new restrictions on the ability of CSOs to operate free from excessive government scrutiny and control, governmental actors are gaining greater control over the non-governmental sector and in ways that benefit from the veneer of legality. Perplexingly, such laws are not only appearing in countries where they might be expected – Azerbaijan, Burundi, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, Russia, Zimbabwe, and countries throughout the Middle East. Indeed, they are increasingly appearing in democratic states too, including strong, fully consolidated democratic states with historically strong and independent civil society sectors: Canada, India, New Zealand, Spain, Israel, Hungary, Poland, and the US, to name just a few. Restrictive CSO laws, which are unsurprising in authoritarian-leaning states, are uniquely puzzling in the context of democratic ones, which have been the primary defenders, funders, and champions of a robust and independent civil society. This book explores this concerning and intriguing phenomenon by documenting its full scope and spread within the world’s strongest democratic states and attempting to explain its occurrence. Using a combination of mixed methods – theory, process tracing, interviews, and statistical analysis – this timely analysis helps to shed light on a global phenomenon that seems to be fueling the democratic backsliding visible in an increasing number of democracies throughout the world. This exploration, which bridges comparative and international law, international relations, democratic theory, and state-civil society relations, attempts to make sense of this global contagion, the closing space phenomenon, which threatens to undermine one of cornerstones of any democracy – a free and independent civil society – in the years and decades ahead.