Culture & Ideas

By Tate

By Tate

Our selection of new books and recommendations in Culture and Ideas, for curious eyes and questioning minds, seeking to understanding our present moment.


This list was selected by: Simon (Tate Modern & Tate Britain).

Tender Maps

Alice Maddicott

£19.99 £18.99

Gaia and Philosophy

Lynn Margulis

£7.99 £7.59

Decolonize Multiculturalism

Anthony C. Alessandrini

£14.99 £14.24

Space Crone

Ursula K. Le Guin

£13.99 £13.29

Truth & Dare

So Mayer

£10.99 £10.44


Lynne Tillman

£10.99 £10.44

Portrait Tales

Jean Fremon

£11.99 £11.39

Of Fear and Strangers: A History of Xenophobia

George Makari

£11.99 £11.39


Brian Dillon

£13.99 £13.29

Radical Intimacy

Sophie K Rosa

£14.99 £14.24

On Lying And Politics: A Library of America Special Publication

Hannah Arendt and David Bromwich

£11.99 £11.39

I'm a Fan

Sheena Patel

£9.99 £9.49

The Extreme Self: Age of You

Douglas Coupland, Hans Ulrich Obrist, et al.

£14.95 £14.20

Boogie Down Predictions: Hip-Hop, Time, and Afrofuturism

Roy Christopher and Ytasha L. Womack

£19.99 £18.99

Embrace Fearlessly the Burning World: Essays

Barry Lopez

£12.99 £12.34

Everybody: A Book About Freedom

Olivia Laing

£20.00 £19.00

Radical Attention

Julia Bell

£6.00 £5.70

It's time to pay attention to our distractions. In today's online economy, attention has been commodified. We exchange our attention for information and entertainment, but at what cost? Julia Bell's essay glows with insights and offers pathways to reclaim our attention.

Out of Nowhere Into Nothing

Caryl Pagel


A perfect, mellow and thoughtful read this one. Fine company for lockdown. If you are missing hanging out and having those odd, meandering conversations about everything and nothing, or even just missing the possibility of doing that, thats basically what this book provides in haagen dazsian scoopfulls - a mash up of Pagel’s personal experiences, her research, and her observations that tease out connections between the visual and the invisible. She’s an Everyday magic seeker. A stream of random, enigmatic tales about a housemate that borrowed a car then disappeared, a football coach who faked his own death, a great piece on photography in Chicago, and a history of ‘sane hallucinations’ in the late 19th century. Much like our lockdown days, this book drifts, pauses, considers little everyday incidents and investigates seemingly ordinary things. Nothing is mundane or dull if you stay open and let it it in.

Capital Hates Everyone: Fascism or Revolution

Maurizio Lazzarato and Robert Hurley

£14.99 £14.24

Sociologist Maurice Lazzarato points to a stark choice emerging from today's world events. As booksellers we have long understood Capitalism to be the enemy of true commerce, because its purpose is to prevent widespread prosperity, rather than create it.

Having and Being Had

Eula Biss

£15.99 £15.19

Postcapitalist Desire: The Final Lectures

Mark Fisher

£12.99 £12.34

When we try to understand what is happening in the world, it can all seem such a muddled and cloudy picture. Then along came the unique and gifted Mark Fisher, who was able to look around at culture, music, politics and society as if looking through glass, then write about it with clarity, insight and wit. Fisher is tragically lost to us now, but his work endures and is of far greater value than the price of this book!

Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?

Linda Nochlin

£9.99 £9.49

Strangers: Essays on the Human and Nonhuman

Rebecca Tamas

£12.99 £12.34

Where the human and the non-human overlap, and why these fragile relationships may be the most important connections we have.

The Superrationals

Stephanie LaCava

£14.99 £14.24

A dark, comic novel about female friendship and the entangled relationship between the counterculture and the art industry.

Against Amazon: and Other Essays

Jorge Carrion

£12.99 £12.34

Against Amazon and Other Essays explores the increasing pressures of Amazon and other new technologies on bookshops and libraries. In essays on these vital social, cultural, and intellectual spaces, Jorge Carrión travels from London to Geneva, from Miami’s Little Havana to Argentina, from his own well-loved childhood library to the rosewood shelves of Jules Verne’s Nautilus and the innovative spaces that characterize South Korea’s bookshop renaissance. Including interviews with writers and librarians―including Alberto Manguel, Iain Sinclair, Luigi Amara, and Han Kang, among others―Against Amazon is equal parts a celebration of books and bookshops, an autobiography of a reader, a travelogue, a love letter―and, most urgently, a manifesto against the corrosive influence of late capitalism.

Smashing It: Working Class Artists on Life, Art and Making It Happen

£12.99 £12.34

Celebrating the work of thirty-one leading working class writers in Britain. Featuring writing, lyrics and images from Wiley, Maxine Peake, Riz Ahmed and many more. Packed with insights, advice and motivation from those who made it through the door but didn't forget to hold it open for others.

Feminist City: Claiming Space in a Man-Made World

Leslie Kern

£9.99 £9.49

Most stuff in the world has been designed by men for men using research data from men. Men even own the terminology: “Man-Made”. You see it everywhere in culture and commerce, but it is no less true of architecture, urban design and planning. To read this book is to understand that our public spaces need a more considered and inclusive approach. Public spaces rarely factor in women, especially mothers with children or women walking alone. The smarter future of urban living starts here.

Terraformed: Young Black Lives in the Inner City

Joy White

£10.99 £10.44

An uncompromising wake-up call. Joy White tells uncomfortable truths and blows apart our understanding of racism, crime and policing in our inner-cities.

The Faggots and Their Friends Between Revolutions

Larry Mitchell and Ned Asta

£12.99 £12.34

The Faggots and Their Friends Between Revolutions is a beloved queer utopian text written by Larry Mitchell with illustrations by Ned Asta, originally published by Calamus Press in 1977. Part-fable, part-manifesto, the book takes place in Ramrod, an empire in decline, and introduces us to the communities of the faggots, the women, the queens, the queer men, and the women who love women who are surviving the ways and world of men. Cherished by many over the four decades since its publication, The Faggots and Their Friends Between Revolutions offers a trenchant critique of capitalism, assimilation, and patriarchy that is deeply relevant today. This new edition features essays from performance artist Morgan Bassichis.

Feminism, Interrupted: Disrupting Power

Lola Olufemi

£12.99 £12.34

An outstanding book that reclaims feminism from consumerism and commodification and shows that the struggle for gendered liberation is a struggle for justice that can transform the world for everyone.


David Farrier


A profound meditation on climate change and what the world will look like in ten thousand, or ten million years time. By travelling forward and looking at the fossils of the future, we can better understand what is happening in the world today.

How to Stay Sane in an Age of Division: The powerful, pocket-sized manifesto

Elif Shafak

£5.99 £5.69

We were already in an age of contagious anxiety before Covid-19, now we are even more likely to be overwhelmed by the events around us, by injustice, by suffering, and by an endless feeling of crisis. How can we nurture the parts of ourselves that hope, trust and believe in something better? Highly recommended book from the Booker-Prize nominated novelist Elif Shafak.

Automation and the Future of Work

Aaron Benanav

£12.99 £12.34

Does the much-discussed rise of the robots really explain the jobs crisis that awaits us on the other side of the coronavirus? In Automation and the Future of Work, Aaron Benanav uncovers the structural economic trends that will shape our working lives far into the future. What social movements, he asks, are required to propel us into post-scarcity, if technological innovation alone can't deliver it?

The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction

Ursula Le Guin and Lee Bul

£7.99 £7.59

What if technology was a bag, to carry culture and ideas in, rather than a weapon of domination? Le Guin's classic essay is republished here with an introduction by Donna Haraway, and it's no exaggeration to say this will open you up to the possibilities of human experience, knowledge and seeing the world anew.

Retreat: How the Counterculture invented Wellness

Matthew Ingram

£14.99 £14.24

The counterculture of the Sixties and the Seventies and it's influence on health and wellness is explored in this illuminating cultural history. Matthew Ingram connects the dots between the beats, yoga, meditation, psychedelics, psychoanalysis, Eastern philosophy, sex, and veganism, showing how the hippies still have a lot to teach us about our wellbeing.

The English Heretic Collection: Ritual Histories, Magickal Geography.

Andy Sharp

£12.99 £12.34

Andy Sharp delivers a visionary field report based on fifteen years of research expeditions to England's strangest landscapes. Tapping into the resurgent interest in horror, folk customs and witchcraft and exploring occult connections in art and literature across the British Isles.

On Nostalgia


£10.99 £10.44

From Mad Men to MAGA: how nostalgia came to be and why we are so eager to indulge it. From movies to politics, social media posts to the targeted ads between them, nostalgia is one of the most potent forces of our era. On Nostalgia is a panoramic cultural history of nostalgia, exploring how a force that started as a psychological diagnosis of soldiers fighting far from home has come become a quintessentially modern condition. Cultural critic David Berry examines how the relentless search for self and overwhelming presence of mass media stokes the fires of nostalgia, making it as inescapable as it is hard to pin down. Holding fast against the pull of the past while trying to understand what makes the fundamental impossibility of return so appealing, On Nostalgia explores what it means to remember, how the universal yearning is used by us and against us, and it considers a future where the past is more readily available and easier to lose track of than ever before.

Afropean: Notes from Black Europe

Johny Pitts

£10.99 £10.44

When I Dare to Be Powerful

Audre Lorde

£6.99 £6.64

Girls Against God

Jenny Hval

£10.99 £10.44

Our House is on Fire: Scenes of a Family and a Planet in Crisis

Svante Thunberg, Malena Ernman, et al.

£16.99 £16.14

Coventry: Essays

Rachel Cusk

£10.99 £10.44

Weird Fucks

Lynne Tillman

£9.99 £9.49

Hag: Forgotten Folktales Retold

Mahsuda Snaith, Imogen Hermes Gowar, et al.

£14.99 £14.24


Josh Cohen

£6.00 £5.70

100 Poets: A Little Anthology

John Carey


Image: Sheba Chhachhi Urvashi - Staged Portrait, Gulmohar Park, Delhi 1990

On Display in Free Displays "Artist and Society", Tate Modern.

© Sheba Chhachhi

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