In her book Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work (Amazon), Nancy Green compares the fashion and garment manufacture industries in Paris and New York. She finds many similarities between the locations. Green’s work seems to have two theme: dealing with the myth of “the Jewish tailor and the nimble-thimbled woman,” and the struggle between standardization and flexibility. Green attempts […]
About Jeremy W. Richter
I’m Jeremy W. Richter. In addition to authoring this blog, I am an attorney with Webster, Henry, Lyons, Bradwell, Cohan & Speagle, P.C., in Birmingham, Alabama, practicing civil defense litigation and focusing on commercial auto/trucking litigation, premises liability, general business liability, and various other aspects of insurance defense litigation.
Peter Kolchin’s Unfree Labor (Amazon) compares the systems of American slavery and Russian serfdom. Kolchin’s argument is compelling and has been widely accepted and regarded among his fellow historians. Kolchin recognizes that at the time of the adoption of the labor systems of slavery and serfdom, both the United States and Russia were experiencing periods of […]
Carl Degler’s Neither Black Nor White (Amazon) is a comparative study of race relations in the United States in Brazil. A number of historical reviews have declared this as a markedly important work in the field of comparative race studies. Neither Black Nor White is both enlightening and effective. Degler takes into account a great many […]
What I initially liked about George Fredrickson’s The Comparative Imagination (Amazon) is that his opening chapter defined as best he could comparative history, allowing the reader to have a framework from which to interpret the author’s work. I also appreciated that Fredrickson acknowledges that history, specifically comparative, associates itself with and fuels a relationship between itself […]
Irokawa Daikichi’s work The Culture of the Meiji Period (Amazon) dissects its subject in a much more negative light than others who have studied the same period. While Irokawa understood the benefits of modernization and the Restoration, he also comprehended the cultural sacrifices required for the sake of “bettering Japan.” Unlike studies Keene and Kikue, Irokawa’s […]
Pat Barr’s The Coming of the Barbarians: A Story of Western Settlement in Japan, 1853-1870 (Amazon) tells the coming of Westerners to Japan over a seventeen-year span. Barr’s account begins with the coming of Commodore Matthew Perry and leaves off with Tokyo being opened to foreign trade and residence. Barr concentrates almost completely on the Americans and […]
Kikue Yamakawa’s Women of the Mito Domain: Recollections of Samurai Family Life (Amazon) is very informative about the social and cultural lives of the residents, especially the women, of the Mito domain prior to the Meiji Restoration. The book relies primarily on testimony from Yamakawa’s mother about her childhood. The work takes the reader from the […]
The Autobiography of Yukichi Fukuzawa (Amazon) is both engaging and interesting throughout the work. Fukuzawa’s determination for the betterment of both himself and Japan is pervasive. This drive and his goals are especially evident in his “Encouragement of Learning” and can be summed up in the following excerpt: “The important thing for everyone for the present […]
John Brewer’s A Sentimental Murder: Love and Madness in the Eighteenth Century (Amazon) discusses the brutal public murder of Martha Ray by her admirer James Hackman in April 1779. The truth behind the story is hard to decipher. Some correspondence existed between Ray and Hackman, but the depth of their relationship must be left to speculation. Martha Ray […]
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