Cracking the Dress Code

The Extreme Gone Mainstream, by Cynthia Miller-IdrissPicture a right-wing extremist and what comes to mind? Do you think of a shaved head, a bomber jacket, tight jeans, and Dr. Martens boots with white laces? In The Extreme Gone Mainstream, Cynthia-Miller Idriss reveals that this image of a burly skinhead is becoming outdated. Instead, a new generation of clothing companies is marketing stylish and contemporary leisurewear laced with coded far-right symbology to youth in Germany and elsewhere. Miller-Idriss’s interviews with apprentice scaffold-builders from Berlin demonstrate that although these young workers could not always articulate the coded meanings of these symbols, they frequently associated the clothing with the far-right thanks to other contextual clues. Part of the intention of this coding is to evade stringent anti-Nazi dress codes in German public institutions while still signaling to other members of right-wing extremist subcultures. But what do these symbols look like? Would you recognize them if you saw them?

Numeric codes can substitute numbers for the corresponding letters of the alphabet, so that 1 stands for A, 2 for B and so on. The use of the combinations 18 (AH, for Adolf Hitler) and 88 (HH, for Heil Hitler) is sufficiently common that these numbers are prohibited on vanity license plates in Germany (p. 59). Other numbers conceal more arcane references—14 often appears as a substitute for the fourteen words in a quotation from American white supremacist David Lane. 168:1 compares the death toll in the Oklahoma City bombing to the execution of the bomber Timothy McVeigh. These codes can be used in combination—a t-shirt bearing the number 1488 does not necessarily commemorate the year of a historic event.

Graphics can similarly convey covert references. Images of palm trees or desert foxes hint at the North African military campaigns of the German Afrika Korps during the Second World War, under the generalship of Erwin Rommel, nicknamed “the Desert Fox.” References to polar expeditions or images of Antartica play on the idea of “the white continent.” Meanwhile images of Vikings or figures from Norse mythology draw on the Nordic heritage often claimed by white supremacists. The same may be true of script in the runic letters of early Scandinavian languages or symbols such as the Celtic cross.

Interestingly, the lexicon of right-wing extremist symbols sometimes stretches to encompass images traditionally associated with the left—the communist revolutionary Che Guevara, for instance, or the Palestinian keffiyeh, long associated with the Palestinian liberation movement – because of their rebellious associations. Mainstream brands can also find themselves co-opted by right-wing extremists, again allowing these extremists to signal to those in the know while passing undetected in daily life. Wearing clothing from Ansgar Aryan may be unambiguous, but what about a preference for New Balance shoes? (The N logo is used to suggest Nazi.) T-shirts from the British sportswear brand Lonsdale are favored because, worn under a half-zipped bomber jacket, the partially obscured logo reads ”NSDA”, lacking only the P from the German acronym of the Nazi party, NSDAP.

With this kind of deliberate ambiguity and game-playing prevalent, it’s easy to see why Miller-Idriss’s respondents struggled to explain the right-wing iconography of the clothing. It’s clear too that the less overt messaging and updated style of the new brands is reaching a market beyond extremist subcultures. Thor Steinar, perhaps the most successful, has high-street outlets in several European cities and can be found on the sites of online retailers including Amazon. Key reading toward understanding the global resurgence of the far right, The Extreme Gone Mainstream draws on numerous interviews with young people and thousands of historical and contemporary images to reveal exactly how the seemingly benign guise of everyday consumption is allowing extremist ideologies to enter mainstream German culture.

Browse Our New Philosophy 2018 Catalog

Our new Philosophy catalog includes a guide to the middle years of life, a history of the concept of purpose, and Roger Scruton’s defense of human uniqueness.

If you will be attending the APA Eastern Division meeting in Savannah next week, please stop by our table to pick up a copy of the catalog and see our full range of books in Philosophy and related areas.

In Midlife, Kieran Setiya explores the many questions that beset us in middle age, and proposes a series of responses that can help us through the crises of confidence that these questions can prompt. Witty and thoughtful, Midlife is perfect reading for anyone dreading the onset of another year, just like the last one….

Midlife, by Kieran Setiya

The concept of purpose has been with us since the dawn of western philosophy. In On Purpose Michael Ruses traces the long history of this idea that seems both elusive and fundamental to human experience, from Plato and Aristotle to Darwin and beyond.

On Purpose, by Michael Ruse

In On Human Nature, Roger Scruton argues that, contra Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennett, humans cannot be understood solely in terms of their biology – our social relations with fellow humans and the shared world that we construct around them are no less essential to human nature than our physical bodies.

On Human Nature, by Roger Scruton

Find these and many more new titles in our Philosophy 2018 catalog.

Browse Our New History 2018 Catalog

Our 2018 History catalog includes a unique, multi-faceted account of Soviet Russia through the lens of a vast Moscow apartment building, the story of the rich and complex encounter between Enlightenment Europe and the civilizations to its east, and the unexpected roots of the science of heredity in nineteenth century insane asylums.

If you will be at AHA 2018 in Washington DC, please join us at our booth on Friday afternoon for a reception to celebrate our latest publications:

Booth 332
4:30pm, Friday, January 5th

Or stop by at any time to pick up a copy of this catalog, and see our full range of titles in history.

Our lead history title this Fall is Yuri Slezkine’s extraordinary and monumental House of Government: A Saga of the Russian Revolution. One reviewer in the London Review of Books has rightfully called it “a Soviet War and Peace.” The book tells the chilling story of how the building’s residents lived in their apartments and ruled the Soviet state until some eight hundred of them were evicted from the House and led, one by one, to prison or to their deaths.

House of Government, by Yuri Slezkine

Jürgen Osterhammel’s Unfabling the East: The Enlightenment’s Encounter with Asia brings the sights and sounds of this tumultuous age vividly to life and demonstrates how Europe discovered its own identity anew by measuring itself against the great civilizations of the East, from the Ottoman Empire and India to China and Japan.

Unfabling the East, by Jurgen Osterhammel

In history of science, Theodore Porter’s Genetics in the Madhouse: The Unknown History of Human Heredity tells the unknown story of how the collection and sorting of hereditary data in mental hospitals gave rise to the new science of human heredity.

Genetics in the Madhouse, by Theodore M. Porter

Find these new titles and many more in our History 2018 catalog.

Browse Our New Economics 2018 Catalog

Our new Economics 2018 catalog features new books from Dani Rodrik, Jean Tirole, Andrew W. Lo, and Jonathan Haskel and Stian Westlake, and many more. 

PUP at ASSA 2018

This year in Philadelphia we will be having something of an ASSA PUP bonanza with:
—Reception on Friday at 10am with our new director Christie Henry
—Reception on Saturday at 6pm with Richard Layard and Alan Krueger for The Origins of Happiness
—Competition for John Campbell’s Financial Decisions and Markets
—Samplers of Posner and Weyl’s Radical Markets
—Buttons for Jean Tirole’s Economics of the Common Good

Come and find us at booths 308/310, where you can pick up a copy of the catalog and see our full range of books in Economics.

Follow the conversation on Twitter, #ASSA2018

In Straight Talk on Trade, Dani Rodrik argues that unfettered globalization is undermining the ability of nations to achieve basic goals including prosperity, stability, and equity, and calls for a new global order that balances the global and national interests.

Straight Talk on Trade, by Dani Rodrik

Economics for the Common Good is Nobel Prize-winner Jean Tirole’s manifesto for a new economics that is fully engaged with the many challenges faced by modern society, and seeks to be a force for the common good.

Economics for the Common Good, by Jean Tirole

Are investors rational or irrational? Andrew W. Lo argues that, in real world markets, rationality and irrationality coexist, and proposes a new framework for understanding market behavior in Adaptive Markets.

The increasing share of intangible assets in the economy has ushered in a quiet revolution. In Capitalism without Capital, Jonathan Haskel and Stian Westlake uncovers the role of the intangible economy in the major economic changes of the last decade and consider its implications for the future.

Capitalism without Capital, by Jonathan Haskel and Stian Westlake

Find full details for all of these titles in our Economics 2018 catalog.

Browse Our Earth Science 2018 Catalog

Our new Earth Science 2018 catalog ranges from the northernmost reaches of the globe to the unfathomable depths of its oceans, while also covering essential techniques and concepts in the fields of complexity and predictive ecology. 

If you will be attending the American Geophysical Union 2017 meeting in New Orleans this weekend, please stop by booth 730, where you can pick up a copy of the catalog in person and see our full range of books in Earth Science.

In the forthcoming Brave New Arctic, Mark Serreze details the history and the science of the precipitous warming of the Arctic, and its potentially devastating consequences for the planet as a whole. Drawing on his own work, as well as that of pioneering climate scientists, Brave New Arctic is a fascinating account of the not-so-frozen North. 

Brave New Arctic, by Mark Serreze

Eelco Rohling’s The Oceans traces the history of the planet’s oceans from the Earth’s formation to the present day, demonstrating the critical role they play in the Earth’s climate system. Concise but comprehensive, The Oceans is an essential introduction to paleoceanography, from one of AGU’s newest fellows.  

The Oceans, by Eelco Rohling

Drawing on simple computational models, Natural Complexity by Paul Charbonneau analyzes the emergence of complex behaviors and structure in natural phenomena from forest fires to epidemic diseases. Including complete source code in Python, Natural Complexity is a straightforward introduction to complexity in all its forms.

Natural Complexity, by Paul Charbonneau

What is involved in making ecology a more predictive science? In Ecological Forecasting, Michael Dietze covers the cutting-edge techniques that are driving modern ecology, complete with case studies and hands-on examples using R.

Ecological Forecasting, by Michael C. Dietze

 

Browse Our Anthropology 2018 Catalog

Our Anthropology 2018 catalog includes a guide to thinking like an anthropologist, an in-depth ethnography of a would-be revolutionary middle school in New York, and a powerful argument that culture is the key driver of the success of humans as a species.

If you will be at the American Anthropological Association meeting in Washington DC this week, please visit us at booth 408, where you can pick up a copy of the catalog, and see our full range of titles in Anthropology.

Matthew Engelke’s How to Think Like an Anthropologist is a vivid and entertaining introduction to the key concepts and aims of anthropology. If you have ever been asked what it that anthropologists do and why you do it, How to Think Like an Anthropologist is the perfect answer.

How to Think Like an Anthropologist, by Matthew Engelke

Disruptive Fixation, by Christo Sims, examines the efforts of digital disruptors to revolutionize education through the lens of an innovative middle school project, from the earliest stages of planning to the graduation of its first eight-grade class, and analyzes the ways in which these efforts often fall short of their radical ambitions.

Disruptive Fixation, by Christo Sims

Robert Boyd argues that humans are A Different Kind of Animal, and that our growth to become the dominant species on the planet has been driven by our ability to learn from one another, and to establish the social norms that are the framework for human society—in a word, culture.

A Different Kind of Animal, by Robert Boyd

Find these titles, and many more, in our Anthropology 2018 catalog.

Browse Our New Middle Eastern Studies 2018 Catalog

Our new Middle Eastern Studies catalog includes a fascinating study of a 14th century Arabic encyclopedia, an incisive analysis of the clash between nationalism and Islamism, and a new, comprehensive history of Sufism.

If you will be at MESA 2017 in Washington DC this weekend, please stop by booth 33 to pick up a copy of the catalog, and see our full range of titles in Middle Eastern Studies.

The thirty-one volumes of Shihab al-Din al-Nuwayri’s The Ultimate Ambition in the Arts of Erudition are among the flowers of the encyclopedic tradition in the medieval Islamic world. In The World in a Book, Elias Muhanna explores the cultural context within which this monumental work emerged, its structure and content, and its reception both in the Islamic world and in Europe.

The World in a Book, by Elias Muhanna

In Making the Arab World, Fawaz Gerges (author of ISIS: A History) analyses the conflicting roles of nationalism and Islamism in the history of the modern Middle East, as represented by two strikingly different figures: Gamal Abdel Nasser and Sayyid Qutb.

Making the Arab World, by Fawaz Gerges

Sufism, by Alexander Knysh, presents a comprehensive history of this enduring ascetic, mystical strand of Islam, from its emergence during the golden age of Islam to the modern day. Considering the tradition from the perspective both of adherents and outsiders, Knysh presents Sufism in all its richness and complexity.

Sufism, by Alexander Knysh

Browse Our New Sociology 2017 Catalog

Our new Sociology catalog includes an essential guide to social science research in the digital age, an inside look at blue-collar trades turned hipster crafts, and an examination of the commercialization of far right culture in Germany.

If you’ll be at ASA 2017 in Montreal, please join us for wine and light refreshments:

Booth 721
3pm
Sunday, August 13th

Or stop by any time to see our full range of sociology titles and more.

Digital technology has the potential to revolutionize social research, data gathering, and analysis. In Bit by Bit, Matthew J. Salganik presents a comprehensive guide to the principles of social research in the digital age. Essential reading for anyone hoping to master the new techniques enabled by fast-developing digital technologies.

Bit by Bit, by Matthew J. Salganik

Richard E. Ocejo draws on multiple years of participant-observation in a fascinating look at four blue-collar trades that have acquired a new cachet in the modern urban economy: bartending, distilling, barbering, and butchering. Join him as he delves deep into the lives and culture of these Masters of Craft.

Ocejo

Recent years have seen a resurgence of far right politics in Europe, manifesting in the increasing presence of clothing and other products displaying overt or coded anti-Semitic, racist, and nationalist symbology. Cynthia Miller-Idriss examines the normalization and commercialization of far right ideology in The Extreme Gone Mainstream.

Miller-Idriss

Meet Your New Neighbors…in the House of Government

Built on the banks of the river Moscow, the House of Government was home to nearly three thousand residents, drawn largely from the government workers of Soviet Russia. Including cinemas, theaters, exercise facilities, creches, and multiple canteens and restaurants, the House of Government epitomized the aspirations of collective plenty that fueled socialist revolution. But what was the experience of living in this colossal building? Imagine yourself a young apparatchik from the provinces moving into an apartment in this prestigious block: let me introduce just a few of your neighbors, from the dozens who appear in Yuri Slezkine’s House of Government.

“Welcome to the House of Government. You must be doing well for yourself to be getting an apartment here, it’s mostly the top government workers here, some from the nomenklatura even. Yes, it’s a big place…thousands living here…two theatres and a cinema, would you believe?…but I pride myself on knowing everyone who lives here. You’ll recognize some of their faces anyway, I’m sure. Like him for instance, that’s Koltsov the journalist…you must read his stuff in Pravda? Seems like he never misses an issue. The young lad with him is his son, well, his adopted son anyway, all the way from Germany, but you wouldn’t know it to speak to him. Talks like a Moscow boy, born and bred. We have quite a few writers…Arosev, for instance…no, I started one once but I couldn’t finish it. It was a bit over my head, to be honest. Same with Voronsky…what was that magazine he ran? Red Virgin Soil? I like something with a good story and people you can believe in. Anyway, he’s up in 357.

Mikhail Koltsov

Mikhail Koltsov

“Ah, comrade Ivanov, let me introduce a new tenant, just moving in on the second floor…Ivanov’s a good man, one of the real Old Bolsheviks, you’d know he was in the streets in 1917, not like some people I could mention, telling you they were in the Winter Palace when they were really hiding under their beds. No airs and graces with Ivanov, he’s done an honest day’s work in his time. “The Baker,” they call him. The woman he’s talking to now is Elena Dimitrievna Stasova, they know each other from old times…she’s with the Comintern now, spent quite a while in Germany working with our comrades there.

“Him? Why, that’s Mironov from the GPU…I could tell you stories about him that would turn your blood cold. They say he caught thousands of traitors when he was in the Ukraine, and not one lived to tell the tale. Shocking to think there are so many out there trying to bring the country down. Must be tough work too…can’t say I’d like to do it myself. I mean, a traitor is a traitor, don’t get me wrong, but still…you’d never think it to see him going out of an evening with his wife. Now she’s something…always dressed to the nines, never a hair out of place. Foreign…Greek, maybe? Definitely not a Russian name, that’s for sure.

Agnessa Argiropulo and Sergei Mironov

Agnessa Argiropulo and Sergei Mironov

“Here we are, this is your floor. There’s nobody on your left at the moment…bit of a sad story really, she was given a one-way ticket to Kazakhstan, and not for any reason that anyone could make out. Still, there must have been something…you don’t wind up stuck on a farm a hundred miles from Almaty for nothing, do you? Tania Miagkova, her name was. Big family on the other side, the Podvoiskys…yes, it is that Podvoisky, Nikolai Ilich from the war. He has some peculiar ideas, let me tell you. Why, one day I stopped by to fix something, knocked on the door, walked in…the whole family was sitting there with not a stitch on them! In December! “It’s good for the health,” says he. I got an eyeful that day. Well, make yourself at home. If you need anything, you know where to find me.”

The Podvoisky family

The Podvoisky family (fully clothed)

Browse Our New Biology 2017-2018 Catalog

In our Biology 2017-2018 catalog you will find a host of new books, from an in depth look at the complex relationship between one of our most beautiful butterflies and a family of poisonous plants to a fascinating exploration of the role of beauty and attraction in sexual selection.

If you will be at ESA in Portland, we will be in booth 703. Join us for a reception with wine and light refreshments to celebrate our new titles and meet our authors at 5pm, Tuesday, August 8th. Or stop by any time to check out our full range of titles in biology and related fields.

In Monarchs and Milkweed, Anurag Agrawal draws on more than a decade of research to bring an unsurpassed account of the coevolution of the monarch butterfly and the milkweed. Monarchs lay their eggs exclusively on milkweed plants, on which they feed in the early stages of their lives as caterpillars. The milkweed has evolved a battery of defensive characteristics to reduce the depredations of monarch caterpillars; in turn, monarchs have evolved their own means of overcoming these defenses. Learn about this evolutionary arms race, and much more besides in Monarchs and Milkweed.

Monarch

In his theory of sexual selection, Darwin argued that animals have “a taste for the beautiful” that governs their attraction to potential mates. But in what does this taste reside? How does it affect the evolution of physical characteristics in animals? What is beautiful to a frog or a peahen? In A Taste for the Beautiful, Michael Ryan delves deeply into the question of sexual attraction and argues that beauty is in the brain of the beholder.

A Taste for the Beautiful by Michael Ryan

Few people know Darwin’s life and work as well as his biographer, Janet Browne (Charles Darwin: Voyaging, Charles Darwin: The Power of Place), making her the perfect editor for The Quotable Darwin. Drawing on the full range of Darwin’s writings, including his letters to friends and family, and his private notebooks, The Quotable Darwin is an unforgettable picture of the man and his thought in his own words.

The Quotable Darwin by Janet Browne

Find these books and many more in our Biology 2017-2018 catalog.

Which Heretic are You?

Steven and Ben Nadler’s Heretics is a graphic novel account of the seventeenth-century thinkers who challenged the authority of church and king—risking excommunication, imprisonment, and even execution—to lay the foundations of modern philosophy and science. But which of these radical philosophers would you have been? Take our quiz and find out:

Do you believe that God is:

When a tree falls in a forest, do you think that:

When one body gravitates toward another, is it because:

Do you believe mind and body are:

Are miracles possible?

What is the source of a political sovereign’s authority?

Is this the best of all possible worlds?

What happens when you die?

Big Pacific – Passionate Pacific

Watch the fourth episode of Big Pacific, “Passionate Pacific,” on your local PBS station at 8pm Eastern, Wednesday, July 12th. The companion book is available now from Princeton University Press.

The largest ocean on planet Earth, the vast and unfathomable Pacific is inhabited by an extraordinary wealth and diversity of animal life. This multitude of species is united by a common drive—the need to reproduce—but that drive is expressed in ways as different as the creatures themselves.

Clownfish and Anemone

A clownfish lurks amid the fronds of a poisonous Anemone.

The home life of the clownfish is unusual—these small, brightly colored fish live out their lives amid the fronds of sea anemones, exuding a mucus-like covering that protects them from the anemone’s poisonous sting. Up to a dozen clownfish may live in the embrace of a single anemone, protected from predators by their host’s venom. In return, the clownfish consume parasites that could harm the anemone, and their movements as they swim help waft food towards the stationary anemone. All clownfish are born male, but within each of these miniature colonies, one of these males will become dominant and develop into a female. In turn, this female will select one and only one of the remaining males as a mate, leaving the rest to live out their lives in cloistered celibacy. The chosen male has the tasks of fertilizing the hundreds of eggs released by the female when she spawns and of guarding them without respite until they hatch ten days later.

Grunion run

Grunion carpet the shore during their mating run.

The reproductive life of the Gulf grunion is more hazardous and dramatic, played out in the liminal zone where the ocean meets the shore in the Gulf of California. Riding the high tide produced by the full moon, a wave of female grunion pitches onto the beach, digging into the sand to find a place to lay their eggs. That wave is followed in quick succession by the males, who wrap themselves around their half-buried mates to fertilize the eggs. Though the process takes only minutes, the fish quickly returning to the water to avoid suffocation, it leaves the grunion vulnerable. The beach, densely carpeted with silvery bodies, is an open buffet for predatory birds such as gulls, but the sheer mass of grunion ensures that plenty survive. The grunion hatchlings remain buried in the sand until the next full moon tide allows them to make their way back into the ocean.

Seahorses with tails entwined

Pot-bellied seahorses entwine their tails for a mating dance.

The Pot-bellied seahorse prefers a more relaxed courtship. Having identified a potential mate, the male seahorse brightens his stomach pouch to a vivid yellow. The female responds with her own display of color, and the two entwine their tails for an underwater dance that can last for up to twenty minutes as the seahorses pirouette and twirl around the warm, shallow waters in which they live. At the consummation of the dance, the two belly-to-belly, the female squirts her eggs into an opening in the male’s pouch and the two separate. Once the eggs hatch, the male carries his hundreds of offspring in his pouch for up to a month, before releasing them to float away.