The Volokh Conspiracy

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Revised Edition of My Book "Free to Move: Foot Voting, Migration, and Political Freedom" is Now Out

Now available on Amazon, after a supply chain delay.


I'm happy to report that the revised edition of my book Free to Move: Foot Voting, Migration, and Political Freedom is now out, after delays created by supply chain issues.  The Kindle version (priced at just $9.99!) has been available for some weeks now. You can also order at the Oxford University Press website. If you purchase it at the Oxford UP site, you can use coupon code ALAUTHC4 to get a 30% discount. However, it may take longer to come from the OUP website, because I am told the initial printing has sold out, and a second one is now in the works.

I previously posted a brief overview of what's new in the revised edition and why Oxford University Press and I decided to to do one so soon after the initial version:

Why did the publisher and I decide to put out a revised edition only about 18 months after the first edition was published in May of last year? The biggest reason is that I ended up publishing a book on the value of freedom of movement just as the Covid-19 pandemic hit, and much of the world was trapped in lockdown. This tragic event raised issues that were not included in the first edition, but now clearly deserve attention: most notably claims that severe migration restrictions are needed to control the spread of Covid and other contagious diseases, and the implications of widespread remote work for foot voting.

The revised edition incorporates these two issues and more besides. Among other things, I also address the claim that too much immigration might generate a dangerous nativist backlash, which in turn could even threaten liberal democracy. This idea—which I really should have included in the original edition—is distinct from the argument that immigration threatens liberal institutions because immigrants themselves might turn out to be terrible voters who support illiberal politicians and parties. The latter issue was already extensively addressed in the original edition, and I have a added a few points related to it in this one.

In earlier posts about the new edition, I briefly summarized some of the points it makes about pandemic migration restrictions and the impact of remote work on foot voting. Experience with the new Omicron variant reinforces the conclusion that migration restrictions are unlikely to significantly impede the spread of the disease, and may well even be counterproductive.

I first wrote about the problem of illiberal nationalist backlash against migration here. Chapter 6 of the book now includes a much-expanded discussion of this issue.

My pledge to donate 50% of all royalties generated by Free to Move to causes benefiting refugees also applies to all royalties generated by the revised edition, and the e-book version thereof.