Archives for December 2009

Hardy Green launches the Business Books Guy blog

Hardy Green, former books editor at Business Week, has created a new blog devoted to the wonderful world of business (and judging by a few of the early posts, popular economics) book publishing. Check it out here.

Looking for a Stocking Stuffer? Joseph Frank’s New Abridged Volume of DOSTOEVSKY is a Must!

Joseph Frank spent roughly 30 years composing a 5-volume biography of Dostoevsky that has been widely considered a masterpiece, winning critical raves as well as awards. Princeton University Press has just published a newly abridged volume, DOSTOEVSKY: A Writer in his Time that has also been reviewed very positively, and at a mere 959 printed pages, is a the perfect stocking stuffer for the person on your list with an impeccable library!

If you don’t want to take my word for it, please read Michael Dirda‘s riveting review of the book in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal. Our Australian book-lovers are taking note, as well. See Geordie Williamson‘s thoughtful review in The Australian.

Avishai Margalit on ABC Radio

Though many of us blindly catapult through the holidays, steamrolling any obstacle in our way, let us pause to consider the words of PUP author Avishai Margalit: “It is our compromises that tell us who we are.”  Well said, sir!

Follow the link to listen to Avishai’s interview with our friends down under.

Maybe next year his advice will save you and yours some time and energy that otherwise would have been spent on arguments and hurt feelings!

Time Mag Names PUP author and Fed Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke Person of the Year

We would like to congratulate our author Ben Bernanke on his selection of “Person of the Year 2009”, by Time magazine. We’re very honored and proud to be the publishers of his book ESSAYS ON THE GREAT DEPRESSION and, his co-authored book INFLATION TARGETING: Lessons from the International Experience.

Teresa Ghilarducci explains Guaranteed Retirement Accounts

Over at the Monthly Review, they have posted an opinion piece and an interview with Teresa Ghilarducci. Teresa is a proponent of Guaranteed Retirement Accounts and wrote about the cracks in the retirement system and the need for a new type of retirement program in her PUP book When I’m Sixty-four.

If you are worried about how you will afford to retire — especially if you are relying on 401K accounts for retirement — this is required viewing and her book is required reading.

Diego Gambetta’s CODES makes the NewScientist.com’s “Best Books of 2009”

It was great to see the other day Eleanor Harris’s blog post on NewScientist.com’s CultureLab blog on the best books of 2009.  She asked a few New Scientist staffers to pick their favorites this past year and Graham Lawton, Deputy Editor of the magazine, selected our very own CODES OF THE UNDERWORLD: How Criminals Communicate, by Diego Gambetta.  Lawton admists this is more social science than hard science but it made his list nonetheless!  What were your favorite science books of the year?  We’d love to read your picks!

R.I.P. Kirkus Reviews

We shall miss thee!

For another take on the shuttered industry publication, read PUP author Susan Wise Bauer’s blog.   Click here for her hilarious and oh-so-true post, “Kirkus Closes, Author Yawns.”

Down with snark!  Hey, not so fast.  Check out this Gawker post on Kirkus and other recent media casualties.  And how, pray tell, can a pre pub review be “anodyne” and for whom?  Author, reviewer or reader?  Discuss.

Best-selling philosophy books from Princeton University Press

Four PUP titles appear on Library Journal’s best-selling books in philosophy list released yesterday.

Coming in at Number 2 we have the paperback edition of Moral Clarity: A Guide for Grown-Up Idealists by Susan Neiman. Number 12 How Do You Know? The Economics of Ordinary Knowledge by Russell Hardin squeaks by Number 13 Social Conventions: From Language to Law by Andrei Marmor.  And rounding out our contenders is Descartes’s Changing Mind by Peter K. Machamer and J. E. McGuire at Number 17.


Elizabeth Currid on Hollywood’s 2009 “Black List”

I admit, I had never heard of The Black List until I read Elizabeth Currid’s article in today’s Los Angeles Times.

So, for those of you not “in the know” either, here’s a quick description from Currid:

Known as the Black List, this annual ranking of the year’s most-talked-about unproduced screenplays has the power to catapult an unknown screenwriter into instant talks with a major studio. That’s how Diablo Cody, writer of “Juno,” got her break.

Currid, who previously examined the importance of cultural sites for economics in The Warhol Economy, looks at the box-office success of past black list scripts. This practical approach is fascinating.

Altogether, 67 Black List scripts from 2005 were turned into movies between 2006 and 2008, and they collectively generated $2.5 billion in U.S. box-office receipts. That figure is equivalent to the total of the top 10 earners in 2008.

Given this track record, why has the Black List achieved such inordinate influence?

Head over to the LA Times web site to read the complete article, and for a sneak preview of this year’s possible black list scripts, visit Indie Movies Online. The official list is circulated only to industry executives, though it almost always slips out into the media.

Scroogenomics on Reuters UK and at the LSE and RSA

“From about age 10 on — when we first develop well-defined preferences — we endure receiving gifts that we do not like,” Waldfogel writes in “Scroogenomics“. “To make matters worse, we are obliged to pretend to be grateful.”

Click through to view an interview Joel taped on December 3rd with Reuters UK. This was just in advance of his event with the London School of Economics (which conveniently and coincidentally enough is also available online here.)

And if that simply isn’t enough Scroogenomics for you, Joel also appeared on RSA Thursdays which you can view below.

Teresa Ghilarducci on Newshour

According to this recent segment on Newshour, older workers are facing unique challenges in the current economy. Reporter Mike McGuire, for example notes that, “because of the prevalence of internships…At no time since slavery have so many people worked for free in America.”

Paul Solman also speaks with Teresa Ghilarducci, Princeton author of When I’m Sixty-64, who makes a case that “retirement is actually good for people.”

Do you agree? Post a comment below.

David W. Anthony’s New Exhibition and Catalogue: THE LOST WORLD OF OLD EUROPE

THE LOST WORLD OF OLD EUROPE: The Danube Valley, 5000-3500 BC, edited by David W. Anthony and Jennifer Y. Chi, is the gorgeous catalogue accompanying the exhibition now appearing at the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World (ISAW) in New York City. The exhibition and catalogue received a wonderful write-up by John Noble Wilford in The New York Times. Be sure to check out the link for the slide show. In addition, the exhibition has been reviewed on the Science blog, here, and the Discover blog, here. Anthony, who guest curated the exhibition, is the author of the recent Princeton University Press book THE HORSE, THE WHEEL, AND LANGUAGE, a fascinating journey through the Eurasian steppes and the development of the Proto-Indo-European language.