Category: Book reviews

Book review: Radical Secrecy: The Ends of Transparency in Datafied America

by C. Birchall, Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press, 2021, 244 pp. ISBN 978-1-5179-1043-3 Why is it that debates about trade-offs between supposed binary opposites of secrecy and transparency, and between secrecy and security, so often feel unsatisfying? As Clare Birchall acutely points out in her new book, Radical Secrecy: The Ends of Transparency in Datafied… Read more »

Book review: Dying to Serve: Militarism, Affect, and the Politics of Sacrifice in the Pakistan Army

by Maria Rashid, Stanford University Press, 2020. 288pp. ISBN: 9781503610415 Plenty of social scientists and humanities scholars are preoccupied with the technics of warfare, such as lawfare, drones, “low intensity warfare” and the shifting spaces of war. Yet, attention to a traditional means of war, that is, the institution of the military and its constituting… Read more »

Book review: Encountering extremism. Theoretical issues and local challenges

by Alice Martini, Kieran Ford and Richard Jackson (Eds) Manchester, Manchester University Press, 2020. 328 pp. ISBN: 978-1-5261-3660-2. What is the difference between terrorism and extremism? The book Encountering extremism. Theoretical issues and local challenges, edited by Alice Martini, Kieran Ford and Richard Jackson, jumps in this debate by charting the linguistic shift from terrorism… Read more »

Book review: Ethics of Drone Strikes. Restraining Remote-Control Killing

by Christian Enemark (ed.) Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2021. IX + 204 p The increasing use of armed drones has raised a series of ethical and legal questions. The fast-evolving development and sophistication of technologies that drones combine (aerospace, robotics, satellites, artificial intelligence) have stimulated intensive debates about the need of international regulation, tackling the… Read more »

Book club review: Savage Ecology – War and Geopolitics at the End of the World

          Pardon me, I was dreaming; I forgot you are herewaiting for me to accept you again, tell you that you’re not dangerous. Alice Notley, Above the Leaders With the global security system implicated in just about every scenario of civilisational and species collapse, should it be said that scholars have given too much time… Read more »

Book club review*: Savage Ecology – War and geopolitics at the end of the world

*An in-depth review from @SecDialogue by Jairus V. Grove. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2019, 368pp. ISBN: 978-1-4780-0484-4 Welcome, reader, to a new experience for the Security Dialogue blog. While we will continue to feature standard book reviews, in our book club reviews we present a novel kind of in-depth engagement with interesting books. First… Read more »

Book review: The Problems of Genocide: Permanent Security and the Language of Transgression

by A. Dirk Moses, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2021, 598 pp. On March 23, 2021—just over ten years from the day the UN Security Council authorized the United States and NATO intervention in Libya—the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations held a hearing on Samantha Power’s nomination to lead the US Agency for International Development…. Read more »

Book review: Unmanning: How Humans, Machines and Media Perform Drone Warfare

by Katherine Chandler, New Brunswick & Newark: Rutgers University Press, 2020. 190pp. ISBN: 1978809743 Imaginations of the possibility (and the terror) of drone strikes existed well before they were possible. Echoing science fiction work like H.G. Wells’ War in the Air, Nikola Tesla warned in 1921 of “Machines of destruction more terrible than anything conceited… Read more »

Book review: Protecting Human Rights Defenders at Risk

edited by Alice M. Nah, London: Routledge, 2021. 212p. ISBN 9781138392618 ”‘Seguridad’ refers to all the conditions necessary to make human and political life flourish. These are conditions of dignity. But security [to the government] is reduced to a military or police perspective…. People have been sold the idea that the more troops, the more… Read more »

Book review: Breaking Through: Understanding Sovereignty and Security in the Circumpolar Arctic

edited by Wilfrid Greaves and P. Whitney Lackenbauer. Toronto, Ontario: University of Toronto Press, 2021., 278p. ISBN 9781487523527 Breaking Through examines the state of sovereignty and security in the Arctic. Over the past four decades, scholars have identified sovereignty as challenge in the region, particularly in Canada, in the works of researchers such as Michael… Read more »