+1443 776-2705 panelessays@gmail.com

Write a critical review for the book “The Second Shift”  Book reviews will be approximately 1,000 words – double spaced (roughly 3-4 pages) in length. Please use Times New Roman 12-point font. Do a word count on your word processor. An essential feature of a good book review is the reviewer’s ability to write concisely so that a comprehensive evaluation of the book can be obtained from a brief reading.

While you are reading the book, take notes about the following issues: 

– What is the author’s main goal in writing this book? (Convince you of his position on a controversy? Explain the background of an event? Raise awareness of a particular issue?) 

– What are the author’s main points? 

– What kind of evidence does the author provide to make his or her points? Howconvincing is this evidence?  

– Is the book well written? (Easily understandable? Good style?) 

– What group of readers would find this book most useful (Lay people? Students? Experts​in the area?) 

A book review usually has the following components 

1) Introduction (one or two paragraphs) – Bibliographic information (author, title, date ofpublication, publisher, number of pages, type of book) – Brief overview of the theme, purpose and your evaluation.2) Summary of the content (about two pages) – Brief summary of the key points of each chapter or group of chapters – Paraphrase the information but use a short quote when appropriate 3) Evaluation and conclusion (about one page) – Give your opinion about the book. Is the book easy to read or confusing? Is the book interesting, entertaining, instructive? Does the author support his arguments well? What are the book’s greatest strengths and weaknesses? Who would you recommend the book to?

Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies Copyright 2018

2018, Vol. 5, No. 2, 196-200 ISSN: 2149-1291

Professional Book Review

Alexseev, M. A., & Zhemukhov, S. N. (2017). Mass religious ritual and intergroup tolerance: The Muslim

pilgrims’ paradox. Cambridge University Press. pp. 227, ISBN: 9781108123716 (hardcover). $88.86

Reviewed by Ismail Hakki Yigit, Missisippi State University, USA.

In the book, Mass Religious Ritual and Intergroup Tolerance: The Muslim

Pilgrims, Alexseev & Zhemukhov (2017) highlighted the association between

religiosity and tolerance by conducting an empirical study focusing on whether

engagement with the highly religious ritual –Hajj (pilgrimage) in Islam promotes

inter-group tolerance. By implementing Durkheimian perspective into the

tolerance literature, the authors have written a high caliber book by examining

both pilgrimaged and non-pilgrimaged Muslims from Russia’s North Caucasus

region’s tolerance of out-group members. The authors found that pilgrimaged

Muslims returned home with more tolerant views towards out-groups. In

addition, the authors used their findings to explain variations of Muslim

integration to the United States and European countries and to provide a new

perspective of Latino/a integration to the US. This book is a collaboration by two

scholars with different backgrounds; Mikhail A. Alexseev (a political scientist)

and Sufian N. Zhemukhov (a historian). The study is funded by the Carnegie

Corporation of New York and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur


This study has been conducted in various places, in Hajj (Saudi Arabia), in Russia’s North Caucasus

and the Kabardino-Balkaria Republic, where Islam, nationalism, and dissatisfaction with Russian power

mingle. The majority of the Muslim population in Russia’s North Caucasus region have implemented Islam

into their everyday lives, and Islam has become a salient identity for most members of the Muslim population,

particularly after the long suppression and control of the Soviet Union.

The book is divided into three parts. In the first part, Alexseev and Zhemukhov focus on the history

of the Muslim population in Russia’s North Caucasus region and then highlight the importance of the Hajj for

the Muslim population by looking at the Hajj process through ethno-national, historical, and religious

interconnections. Alexseev and Zhemukhov explain the organizational steps of the study and their exploratory

interviews with local young participants in Kabardino-Balkaria and Adygea. In this section the authors

highlight the importance of the exploratory interviews and their impact on the organization of their study. In

the second part of the book, the authors explain the hajj model of social tolerance by developing their

theoretical framework to clarify what they mean by the term Pilgrims’ Paradox. In the third part of the book,

the authors attempt to implement the Hajj model of tolerance to explain the integration of Muslims in the

United States and European countries. The authors also examine whether repositioning, re-categorization, and

re-personalization processes apply in other settings, such as integration of Latino population to the United


In the first chapter of the book, Alexseev and Zhemukhov explain the importance of Hajj from both a

religious perspective and a socio-historical background of the region. The Hajj, in both Russia’s North

Caucasus and in the Kabardino-Balkaria, has been used by Muslim populations as a local resistance to move

away from despotic Russian regime. Participating in the Hajj journey, according to Alexseev and Zhemukhov,

provided an opportunity for Muslims to maintain their ethnic and religious identities. For example, the ethnic

identity narrative of Circassian was developed based on the Hajj journey of the Muslim population. During the

Soviet period, Moscow restricted the Hajj and then banned it from 1930 to 1944. During WWII the Hajj was

banned again until Stalin’s death in 1953. The authors show, from historical points of view, how the Hajj was

state-controlled and suppressed, yet continued to be a valued religious ritual and tradition in the region. During

the post-Soviet period, the Hajj has reemerged slowly due to legacies of the Soviet rule that suppressed

religious practice. An important connection that the authors argue in the book is that Post-Soviet Muslims

developed their religious identity through the revival of their ethnic identity. This connection is important in

understanding most of the Muslim societies, such as those in Turkey, Morocco, and Jordan because the