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Summer 2022 Reading List

Four new books for the summer ahead

Photo by Dan Dumitriu on Unsplash

Last summer, I shared four books I was looking forward to reading. Summer is here again and there’s more great reading ahead.

If you had to plan a summer party, could you do better than inviting Ella Fitzgerald, Marilyn Monroe, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Mary McLeod Bethune? How about Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglas dropping by to join in the fun? That’s where Saladin Ambar takes us in Stars and Stripes (Oxford UP), his meditation on interracial friendship and why understanding it matters to democracy and politics in the United States.

Photo by Cameron Smith on Unsplash

Summer’s are great for a juicy whodunnit filled with shady suspects and cliffhangers. In the role of Agatha Christie is Amy McKay in Stealth Lobbying (Cambridge UP). McKay’s on the track of one of the great mysteries in political science: do lobbyists buy votes? I won’t spoil the ending, but in Beth Leech’s review of the book, Leech concludes that McKay has found the ‘smoking gun’!

On June 23rd — two days into summer 2022, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the landmark law preventing sex-based discrimination in schools. That law wouldn’t have been possible without the work of Patsy Mink. Mink was the first woman of color and the first Asian American woman elected to Congress and one of the leading champions of the law.

She is the subject of a new biography, Fierce and Fearless, by Judy Tzu-Chun Wu and Gwendolyn Mink (Patsy Mink’s daughter) from NYU Press. Celebrate a half century of Title IX this summer by reading this book.

With a summer Supreme Court ruling on abortion rights likely, all attention will soon shift to the states. How will states respond to the overturn Roe v. Wade? Jake Grumbach’s new book from Princeton University Press, Laboratories against Democracy, has some answers.

In particular, Grumbach focuses on the linkages between public opinion and state policy. In the case of abortion, policy and opinion have been travelling in the opposite directions. Grumbach writes “Since Roe v. Wade, many states innovated and implemented increasingly restrictive abortion policies — but… on average, opinion has remained stable during this time period.”

The book was finished a while ago, but Grumbach anticipated what might happen this summer: “If Roe is overturned, some states, mostly those controlled by Republicans, could implement state laws that criminalize abortion. Other states, mostly divided or Democratic, will maintain or even expand access to abortion services.”

These are the books I’m looking forward to reading this summer focused mainly on US politics. This is just a start and those long summer days mean plenty of time for other books. What are you reading?



3Streams is a blog for anyone interested in the convergence of politics, policy & ideas. It elevates the work of scholars interested in reaching a wider audience on timely topics with novel perspectives. To write for the blog, just leave a message or email 3Streamsblog@gmail.com.

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Heath Brown

Heath Brown, associate prof of public policy, City University of New York, study presidential transitions, school choice, nonprofits