A roundup of books published by College of Liberal Arts faculty and staff

Wednesday, December 18, 2019
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From a memoir about fathers and sons to an exploration of labor activism in mid-20th century Hong Kong to new editions of Shakespeare’s plays, the books produced by Liberal Arts faculty and staff this year span continents, centuries and genres. One book has already garnered awards: Fredrik Meiton’s “Electrical Palestine” was recognized by the Middle East Studies Association with two book awards. Last year’s “Treasures Afoot,” by Kimberly Alexander, was named an Honors Book this year by Historic New England and Will Smiley's 2018 "From Slaves to Prisoner of War" was awarded a 2019 book prize by the Association for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies.

Yet, this year’s books tell only part of the scholarly and creative story of the College. Faculty members have produced journal articles, book chapters, white papers, visual art, scores and scripts. They've delivered lectures nationally and internationally, exhibited art, presented recitals, and mounted theatre and dance productions. We acknowledge and celebrate the full range of extraordinary work that faculty produced this year and every year.


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In Pursuit of Knowledge: Black Women and Educational Activism in Antebellum America

by Kabria Baumgartner
New York University Press (December 2019)

The story of school desegregation in the United States often begins in the mid-twentieth-century South. Drawing on archival sources and genealogical records, Kabria Baumgartner uncovers the story’s origins in the nineteenth-century Northeast and identifies a previously overlooked group of activists: African American girls and women.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Africana Jewish Journeys: Studies in African Judaism

edited by Marla Brettschneider, Edith Bruder and Magdel Le Roux
Cambridge Scholars Publishing (February 1, 2019)

The contemporary phenomenon of non-Jews attraction to Judaism around the world is remarkable. Millions of people who are not of Jewish descent are increasingly identifying themselves as Jews or are converting. In this volume, scholars and practitioners from a wide variety of disciplines explore multiple sources and meanings of this new shaping of modern Jewish identities in Africa, the United States, and India.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Roughhouse Friday: A Memoir

by Jaed Coffin
Farrar, Straus and Giroux (June 18, 2019)

A memoir about fathers and sons, masculinity and the lengths we sometimes go to in order to confront our past.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Threading the Evaluation Needle: The Documentation of Teacher Unprofessional Conduct

by Todd A. DeMitchell and Mark A. Paige
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (December 2019)

This book addresses the legal and professional knowledge that structures discipline and dismissal in the public schools. The authors, based on their educational, legal and research experience, provide templates for various types of documentation necessary to effectively build a case for discipline. This book seeks to give principals the tools and knowledge to institute in good faith a fair and accurate documentation system.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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The Identity Trade: Selling Privacy and Reputation Online

Critical Cultural Communication Series
by Nora A. Draper
New York University Press (February 2019)  

"The Identity Trade" examines the relationship between online visibility and privacy, and the politics of identity and self-presentation in the digital age. Nora Draper looks at the revealing two-decade history of efforts by the consumer privacy industry to give individuals control over their digital image through the sale of privacy protection and reputation management as a service.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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For Love or Money: Confronting the State of Museum Salaries

edited by Dawn E. Salerno, Mark S. Gold and Kristina L. Durocher
MuseumsEtc. (October 2019)

This book brings a highly critical focus to bear on both the causes and the resulting effects of pay inequality on both staff and institutions in the international museum profession. But it also proposes effective strategies to remedy the problem and defines the benefits which fair and equitable pay will achieve.

Available from the publisher.


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The Ruler's House: Contesting Power and Privacy in Julio-Claudian Rome

by Harriet Fertik
Johns Hopkins University Press (December 3, 2019)

Fertik considers how the emperor's household and the space he called home shaped Roman conceptions of power and one-man rule.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Borders and Immigration: The Geo-Politics of Marketplace Demands and Ethnic Relations

by Laurence Armand French and Magdaleno Manzanarez
Lexington Books (October 2019)

Borders and immigration are topics dominating world affairs during the 21st century, including North America. This book examines the historical antecedents to the current crisis notably along the U.S.A./Mexico border under the Trump administration. Both the immigration and border issues transcend the current Administration with a history as long as that of America itself.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Internal Exile in Fascist Italy: History and Representations of Confino

by Piero Garofalo, Elizabeth Leake and Dana Renga
Manchester University Press (May 2019)

This study offers a clear, concise introduction to the Fascist-era practice, know as confino, of exiling antifascist dissidents to parts of Italy far from the dissidents' homes, often on islands or in tiny inland villages. Part one provides a case study of the political colony on the island of Lipari and a historical overview of internal exile. Part two focuses on representations of confinement in literature and film.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Affective Materialities: Reorienting the Body in Modernist Literature

edited by Kara Watts, Molly Volanth Hall and Robin Hackett
University of Florida Press (April 2, 2019)

Showing the ways the body in literature can be a lens for understanding the fluidities of race, gender and sexuality, as well as species and subjectivity, this volume maps the connections among modernist aesthetics, histories of the twentieth-century body and the concerns of modernism that can also speak to urgent concerns of today.  

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Ethics and Religion in the Age of Social Media: Digital Proverbs for Responsible Citizens

by Kevin Healey and Robert H. Woods Jr.
Routledge (December 4, 2019)

Arguing that popular digital platforms promote misguided assumptions about ethics and technology, this book lays out a new perspective on the relation between technological capacities and human virtue. The authors criticize the “digital catechism” of technological idolatry arising from the insular, elite culture of Silicon Valley. In order to develop digital platforms that promote human freedom and socio-economic equality, they outline a set of five “proverbs” for living responsibly in the digital world.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Hollywood at the Intersection of Race and Identity

edited by Delia Malia Caparoso Konzett
Rutgers University Press (November 15, 2019)

This book explores the ways Hollywood represents race, gender, class and nationality at the intersection of aesthetics and ideology and its productive tensions. This volume revisits well-known films in search for a narrative not exclusively constituted by the Hollywood formula.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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The Merchant of Venice: Language & Writing

Arden Student Skills: Language & Writing Series
by Douglas Lanier
The Arden Shakespeare, Bloomsbury (June 13, 2019)

The intersections between religious, racial and economic language in Shakespeare’s “The Merchant of Venice” can be challenging to grasp, but in this guide Douglas Lanier showcases a range of approaches to understanding its language, all based on close reading and attention to Shakespeare's style.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Timon of Athens by William Shakespeare

The New Kittredge Shakespeare Series
Edited by Douglas Lanier
Focus Press (March 15, 2019)

This edition retains the original Kittredge notes and introductions, changed or augmented when modernization was necessary, and also includes a new introductory essay by Douglas Lanier as well as notes on the plays as they have been performed on stage and film, and additional student materials.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Crossed Paths: Labor Activism & Colonial Governance in Hong Kong, 1938-1958

by Lu Yan
Cornell East Asia Series (March 31, 2019)

Drawing upon a range of British and Chinese sources, this book reveals the complex links between labor activism, imperial reform, revolution and the global Cold War to shed new light on colonialism and activism in modern China.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Electrical Palestine: Capital and Technology from Empire to Nation

by Fredrik Meiton
University of California Press (January 8, 2019)

In this book, Fredrik Meiton illustrates how political power, just like electrical power, moves through physical materials whose properties govern its flow. At the dawn of the Arab-Israeli conflict, both kinds of power were circulated through the electric grid that was built by the Zionist engineer Pinhas Rutenberg in the period of British rule from 1917 to 1948. "Electrical Palestine" charts a story of rapid and uneven development that was greatly influenced by the electric grid and set the stage for the conflict between Arabs and Jews.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Final Exam

by Andrew Merton
Accents Publishing (February 15, 2019)

In this third book of poetry by Andrew Merton, "Final Exam" gives us a dose of Merton's unique combination of wisdom, wit and humor that makes us take another look at even our own darkest days from a new and refreshing perspective.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Slavery and the Making of Early American Libraries:  British Literature, Political Thought, and the Transatlantic Book Trade, 1731-1814

by Sean Moore
Oxford University Press (April 28, 2019)

This book explores the relationship between slavery, the book trade and American cultural identity in the eighteenth century. It studies the American dissemination of works of British literature and political thought and discusses how American libraries and transatlantic print culture were financed by profits from slavery.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Salvador Dalí: tradiciones, mitos y modos culturales

by Carmen García de la Rasilla
Editorial Universidad de Granada (2019)

This book analyzes how Dalí in both his plastic and his literary art recreated primary Iberian and classical myths (Venus, Narcissus, Don Quixote and Don Juan) through surrealist perspectives, and how he recycled and refocused established schools and styles such as the Renaissance and the Baroque, various national traditions and a variety of cultural modes such as tragedy, comedy, decadent modernism and irrationalism.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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All Religion is Inter-Religion: Engaging the Work of Steven M. Wasserstrom

edited by Kambiz GhaneaBassiri and Paul Robertson
Bloomsbury Academic (July 11, 2019)

Regarded as contemporary classics, Steven M. Wasserstrom's "Religion after Religion" (1999) and "Between Muslim and Jew" (1995) provided a theoretical reorientation for the study of religion away from hierophanies and ultimacy, and toward lived history and deep pluralism. This book distills and systematizes this reorientation into nine theses on the study of religion that demonstrate that religions can, and must, be understood through encounters in real time and space, through the complex relations they create and maintain between people, and between people and their pasts.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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Father Chaucer: Generating Authority in The Canterbury Tales

Oxford Studies in Medieval Literature and Culture Series
by Samantha Katz Seal
Oxford University Press (December 3, 2019)

This book merges feminist, historicist and literary concerns as it offers a brand new vision of Chaucer as both a poet and a medieval man with an essential desire to leave something stable behind. The book also deals with a major human concern — how to deal with mortality and the simultaneous desire for posterity.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.


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To Save the Country: A Lost Treatise on Martial Law
by Francis Lieber and G. Norman Lieber

edited and with an introduction by Will Smiley and John Fabian Witt
Yale University Press (July 23, 2019)

The last work of Abraham Lincoln’s law of war expert Francis Lieber was long considered lost — until Will Smiley and John Fabian Witt discovered it in the National Archives. Lieber’s manuscript on emergency powers and martial law addresses important contemporary debates in law and political philosophy and stands as a significant historical discovery.

Available from the publisher or major online retailers.