What We Are Reading Today: Preventing Palestine: A Political History from Camp David to Oslo

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Updated 26 March 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Preventing Palestine: A Political History from Camp David to Oslo

Author: Seth Anziska

The 1978 Camp David Accords and the signing of the Egypt- Israel peace treaty are widely viewed as a triumph of US diplomacy in the Middle East.

Yet the Palestinians—the would-be beneficiaries of this vision for a comprehensive regional settlement—remain without a state to this day.

How and why Palestinian statelessness persists are the central questions of Seth Anziska’s groundbreaking history of the Palestinian- Israeli peace process.

Based on newly declassified sources and interviews with key participants, Preventing Palestine charts how Egyptian-Israeli peace was forged at the cost of sovereignty for the Palestinians, creating crippling challenges to their aspirations for a homeland— hurdles that only increased with Israeli settlement expansion and Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon.

The first intifada and the end of the Cold War brought new opportunities for a Palestinian state, but the 1993 Oslo Accords undermined the meaning of independence. Filled with astute political analysis, Preventing Palestine offers a bold new interpretation of an enduring struggle for selfdetermination


What We Are Reading Today: Introductory Lectures on Equivariant Cohomology

Updated 31 March 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Introductory Lectures on Equivariant Cohomology

Author: Loring W. Tu

This book gives a clear introductory account of equivariant cohomology, a central topic in algebraic topology.
Equivariant cohomology is concerned with the algebraic topology of spaces with a group action, or in other words, with symmetries of spaces. First defined in the 1950s, it has been introduced into K-theory and algebraic geometry, but it is in algebraic topology that the concepts are the most transparent and the proofs are the simplest. One of the most useful applications of equivariant cohomology is the equivariant localization theorem of Atiyah-Bott and Berline-Vergne, which converts the integral of an equivariant differential form into a finite sum over the fixed point set of the group action, providing a powerful tool for computing integrals over a manifold. Because integrals and symmetries are ubiquitous, equivariant cohomology has found applications in diverse areas of mathematics and physics.
Assuming readers have taken one semester of manifold theory and a year of algebraic topology, Loring Tu begins with the topological construction of equivariant cohomology.