Cover: Prague: Belonging in the Modern City, from Harvard University PressCover: Prague in HARDCOVER


Belonging in the Modern City

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Product Details


$29.95 • £23.95 • €27.00

ISBN 9780674048652

Publication Date: 05/25/2021


352 pages

5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches

26 photos, 3 maps


[A] subtle, lyrical book. Like the denizens of many other cities, Praguers have juggled identities for centuries… Chad Bryant concentrates on five fascinating individuals, guiding readers through Czech history along the way.The Economist

A worthwhile tome for anyone who wants to get under the skin of this fabulous and historic city.TripFiction

Provides differing perspectives of past and present-day Prague. Each nuanced viewpoint (be it German, Czech, revolutionary, communist, or global) captures the imagination by tapping into the sense of belonging and its relationship to nationalism… Evocative and well-researched… Recommended for travelers interested in the history and politics of Prague.Library Journal

A lively jaunt through Czech history from the nineteenth century to the present told via the lives of five individuals who found themselves in Prague searching for a sense of belonging.—Paulina Bren, author of The Barbizon: The Hotel That Set Women Free

A beautifully written biography of a city told through the lives of individuals who inhabited it. Bryant goes deep into Prague’s social, political, and cultural history, featuring characters who move between different communities of belonging—Czech-speaking, German-speaking, Jewish, communist, Vietnamese. While this book complicates our understanding of what it means to be ‘Czech,’ it also illuminates the search for belonging across the modern world.—Tara Zahra, author of The Great Departure: Mass Migration from Eastern Europe and the Making of the Free World

An innovative, engagingly written book that uses the stories of five Prague residents to subtly upend the traditional narratives of Czech history. Throughout Bryant emphasizes the human element in the search for home and community, showing belonging not only as a practice of pursuing connection, but as an emotional need. The result is a sweeping history of the Bohemian lands, both a masterful synthesis and at the same time highly original.—Melissa Feinberg, author of Curtain of Lies: The Battle over Truth in Stalinist Eastern Europe

Prague creates its own niche and then fills it beautifully, with brisk, fluent writing and an appealing mix of historical background and individual stories. In looking at history from below, through the lives of people who don’t quite fit in, Bryant offers a new way of seeing the city as a crossroads of varied cultures and identities.—Jonathan Bolton, author of Worlds of Dissent: Charter 77, The Plastic People of the Universe, and Czech Culture under Communism

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Jacket: An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns, by Bruno Latour, translated by Catherine Porter, from Harvard University Press

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In awarding Bruno Latour the 2021 Kyoto Prize for Arts and Philosophy, the Inamori Foundation said he has “revolutionized the conventional view of science” and “his philosophy re-examines ‘modernity’ based on the dualism of nature and society.” Below is an excerpt from An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns. For more than twenty years, scientific and technological controversies have proliferated in number and scope, eventually reaching the climate itself. Since geologists are beginning to use the term “Anthropocene” to designate the era of Earth’s history that follows the Holocene