When it comes to women's fashion, is the Age of Revelation over?
For more than a century, fashion designers
sought to reveal the female body, on the basis that clothes were constraining, politically as well as physically, and that women demanded freedom from all the social conventions and prudery that had once kept them hidden and enslaved.
But now, stylists are once again designing clothes that cover up the body, and their creations are being welcomed by various important and hitherto overlooked demographic groups.
What's going on? Is this politics or something else? Hafsa Lodi, a law graduate from SOAS and a fashion enthusiast, examines the question in her book Modesty: A Fashion Paradox, available at a discount from our online bookshop.
Hear Hafsa Lodi read an excerpt from her book on the Booklaunch YouTube channel.
People were locked down at home, kept thinking they were safe when the mortality rates dropped, and quickly guessed that they were being lied to by the authorities. We're talking about the coronavirus pandemic, right?
Wrong. Some 355 years before covid-19, London suffered from the last outbreak of the plague, otherwise known as the Black Death, that had devastated the world for the previous 300 years.
Although the biology of the infection was different, the parallels with today are extraordinary and terrifying.
How Daniel Defoe could write about it with such precision is a mystery: he was only 5 when the plague struck in 1665 and didn't publish his Journal until 1722. However he did it, this is a case study in great documentary journalism.
Hear Stephen Games read from Defoe's book on the Booklaunch YouTube channel.
People tend to treat the poor as if their poverty is their own fault—as if the conditions of disempowerment that we entrap them in are in reality the product of their own ineptitude or bad life decisions.
Accusations like that not only rob people of rights and opportunities, they're also deeply hurtful.
Mary O'Hara is an award-winning journalist and author specialising in social policy and social justice. She was inspired to write about these issues in part because of her experience of childhood poverty growing up in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
In her new book, The Shame Game, she asks how attitudes of blame and condescension that perpetuate inequality and social division can be overturned.
Hear Mary O'Hara read from her book on the Booklaunch YouTube channel.
Two conflicting charges have been laid against the judiciary in recent years: that they act to block the will of the people or go beyond their remit to try and shape it. Do they?
Late in 2019 judges prevented the British prime minister's proroguing of parliament by deciding that no such proroguing had taken place.
Their decision was one of several that outraged some politicians and their constituents, as well as parts of the media that habitually accuse judges of intervening in politics to achieve outcomes that are either too left wing or too right wing.
Joshua Rozenberg, presenter of the BBC's "Law in Action", weighs up the evidence in his book Enemies of the People?, the title of which came from a dramatic headline in the Daily Mail.
Hear Joshua Rozenberg read from his book on the Booklaunch YouTube channel.
Have you ever had difficulty telling Jeremy Corbyn and Donald Trump apart?
No? You may not have spent as much time with Labour Party activists as Dimitri Batrouni.
Dr Batrouni is a councillor, has worked in Parliament and the Welsh Assembly, helped in the US presidential campaigns of 2008 and 2012, and now teaches public policy at the University of Bristol.
In the last chapters of his new book, he looks at how senior figures in the Labour Party discussed policy ideas under Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, and reveals surprising parallels—always denied by Corbyn—between Corbyn's stances and those promoted by Donald Trump.
The book is the product of extensive research within the Labour Party.
Hear Dimitri Batrouni read from his book on the Booklaunch YouTube channel.