Inequality, Immigration, & Eloquent Rage | Nonfiction Previews, Feb. 2018

Austen, Ben. High-Risers: Cabrini-Green and the Fate of American Public Housing. Harper. Feb. 2018. 400p. ISBN 9780062235060. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062235084. SOCIAL SCIENCE/POVERTY
Built in 1940s Chicago, the Cabrini-Green public housing project eventually encompassed a population of 20,000 shoved into 23 towers on 70 acres near the city’s classiest real estate. Since razed, it became emblematic of the failure of public housing and of crushing black poverty overwhelmed by white affluence. Gentrification, privatization, racism, ongoing inequality, and government responsibility–these contemporary issues are highlighted in journalist Austen’s history, which began life as a Harper’s piece. Compared to Matthew Desmond’s Evicted; with a 40,000-copy first printing.

Cooper, Brittney. Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower. St. Martin’s. Feb. 2018. 320p. ISBN 9781250112576. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250112897. CD: Macmillan Audio. SOCIAL SCIENCE/AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES
A Rutgers professor of women’s and gender studies and Africana studies whose monthly column on race, gender, and politics fires up readers of Cosmo, mega TED talker Cooper presents the often caricatured angry black woman as a powerful and positive force: think Beyoncé, Michelle Obama, and the Williams sisters. Along with such stars, Cooper draws on experiences with friends and family to show how black women can make the best of eloquent rage. With a national tour.

Hickel, Jason. The Divide: Global Inequality from Conquest to Free Markets. Norton. Feb. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9780393651362. $26.95. BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
As London School of Economics professor Hickel clarifies, globalization has exacerbated the divide between developed and developing countries. He argues further that this division is grounded in 500 years of empire building and trade wheeling and dealing. Instead of aid or political intervention, Hickel has some radical suggestions about approaching global inequality: abolish debt burdens in the developing world; democratize the IMF, World Bank, and WTO; and institute a global minimum wage. Let the conversation begin.

Keen, Andrew. How To Fix the Future. Atlantic Monthly. Feb. 2018. 288p. ISBN 9780802126641. $26.SOCIAL SCIENCE/FUTURE STUDIES
Executive director of the Silicon Valley salon FutureCast, Keen keeps a close eye on threats the Internet can pose to society, as evidenced by his recent The Internet Is Not the Answer, best-booked by Kazuo Ishiguro in the New Statesman. Here he focuses on five areas—competitive innovation, regulation, consumer choice, civic responsibility, and education—as he travels the globe to discover strategies for assuring a good digital future, pointing out Skype creator Estonia’s transparency of public data and security of private information and EU pressure on American companies regarding taxes and labor laws.

Lipman, Joanne. That’s What She Said: What Men Need To Know and Women Need To Tell Them About Working Together. Morrow. Feb. 2018. 320p. ISBN 9780062437211. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062437235. BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Statistics show that companies with more women in senior leadership positions perform better financially, so it’s a good idea for men to learn how to work more effectively with women. Expanding a 2014 Wall Street Journal article that went viral, Lipman, chief content officer of  newspaper publishing giant Gannett, uses research and personal experience to clarify how that goal can be attained. With a 150,000-copy first printing.

Miller, T. Christian & Ken Armstrong. A False Report: A True Story of Rape in America. Crown. Feb. 2018. 304p. ISBN 9781524759933. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781524759957. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. TRUE CRIME/SEXUAL ABUSE
Pulitzer Prize–winning journalists Miller and Armstrong provide a visceral portrait of rape in America by linking two stories: that of Seattle teenager Marie, accused of lying about being raped, and of Colorado detective Stacy Galbraith, taken aback by the description of the culprit in a sexual assault case as coolly methodical. When Galbraith started working with Edna Hendershot, a detective following a similar case in a nearby town, they determined that they were dealing with a serial rapist trained as a soldier or policeman. (He eliminated all physical evidence and photographed his victims, threatening to release the images online.) Netflix bought rights to an eight-part scripted series to be written by Michael Chabon and Ayelet Waldman.

Wides-Muñoz, Laura. The Making of a Dream: How a Group of Young Undocumented Immigrants Helped Change What It Means To Be American. Harper. Feb. 2018. 304p. ISBN 9780062560124. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062560148. SOCIAL SCIENCE/IMMIGRATION
An executive at Fusion, the joint venture created by Univision and ABC, Wides-Muñoz focuses on five undocumented activists to tell the story of the young immigrants who in recent years have struggled to compel reform of this country’s immigration policy. Efforts to pass the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act repeatedly failed, but in 2012 President Barack Obama issued a groundbreaking new policy, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), that’s still intact—but for how long? To write this story, Wides-Muñoz interviewed a range of immigrants from across Latin America, following some of them for nearly a decade. With a 20,000-copy first printing.

Winkler, Adam. We the Corporations: How American Businesses Won Their Civil Rights. Liveright: Norton. Feb. 2018. 384p. ISBN 9780871407122. $28.95. LAW
In Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the supremely debated 2010 Supreme Court ruling, American businesses (along with labor unions and other associations) won the right to spend unrestrictedly on advertising in support of or against political candidates, essentially giving them equal rights with citizens. UCLA law professor Winkler, also a Daily Beast columnist, explains that this decision was 200 years in the making, capping a corporate rights movement that has shaped this country—and uses the Constitution to short-circuit the regulation of big business.

Barbara Hoffert About Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Prepub Alert; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president, treasurer, and awards chair of the National Book Critics Circle.

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