On the Bookshelf
|Les Fleurs du Mal
By Charles Baudelaire
Humanities professor Kaplan provides a new classroom edition of Baudelaire’s collection “The Flowers of Evil,” whose 1857 publication resulted in charges against the poet for an assault on public morality. It includes the authoritative French text of "Les Fleurs du Mal," key words translated into English, footnote explanations of grammar and allusions, and a French-English glossary. Reviewer Adrianna Paliyenko calls Kaplan’s book “a splendid introduction to the poet and his visionary project, a poetic tour de force that embodies at once an esthetic evolution and a cultural revolution in French literary history.”
|Beyond Slavery: Overcoming Its Religious and Sexual Legacies
Edited by Bernadette Brooten
From biblical times, the institution of slavery has incorporated sexual ownership of women and girls. Brooten, the Kraft-Hiatt Professor of Christian Studies, shows how major religious traditions, including Christianity, Judaism and Islam, have been complicit in such sexual domination. Also explored are the ways religious laws have blurred the lines between slavery and marriage by treating wives as sexual property.
|The Unbearable Heaviness of Governing: The Obama Administration in Historical Perspective
By Morton Keller
Brandeis history professor emeritus Keller, now affiliated with Stanford’s Hoover Institution, analyzes Barack Obama’s early presidency from a historical outlook. While recognizing major achievements (e.g., financial reform and health-care legislation), Keller asserts that Obama, like many predecessors, has suffered as a result of misjudgments of political power, political choices and their consequences, and public attitudes and opinions.
|Building the Successful Theater Company
By Lisa Mulcahy
In this updated second edition, Mulcahy, a multimedia writer and teacher with experience on the professional stage, distills insider advice from the heads of over a dozen successful theater companies. With lively (and sometimes hair-raising) anecdotes from the La Jolla Playhouse, Steppenwolf Theatre, Goodspeed Musicals and other ensembles, she shares wisdom on budget, publicity, fundraising, community relations and recruiting top talent.
|A Secret Gift
By Ted Gup '72
Discovering an inspirational act of generosity performed by his grandfather during the Great Depression, Gup fashioned this relevant book about suffering, survival and human kindness in tough financial times. The story is at once heart-rending and hopeful. Chair of the journalism department at Emerson College, Gup is an award-winning reporter for the Washington Post, Time magazine, and other publications.
|Frelancing Expertise: Contract Professionals in the New Economy
By Debra Osnowitz '98
Time was when you took a job expecting to spend much of your life with the same employer. Today, by force or by choice, a culture shift sees many workers building their careers as freelancers. Here, Clark University sociologist Osnowitz presents a study of writers, editors, programmers and engineers who do contract work. She explores the risks, benefits, coping strategies and consequences involved in their career path.
|Grammatically Correct: The Essential Guide to Spelling, Style, Usage, Grammar and Punctuation
By Anne Stilman '78
Authors and editors will applaud the second edition of this valuable reference work. Where else could one gain clarity on the simple ellipsis, find the latest word on splitting an infinitive, and confront a whole chapter devoted to the underappreciated en dash? This charming volume also presents helpful exercises, lists of common misspellings, and whimsical quotes from the likes of J.D. Salinger, Somerset Maugham and J.K. Rowling.
|Magnetizing Money With Energetic Literacy
By Rose Rosetree aka Laura Rosenbaum '69
Prolific self-help author Rosetree, who boasts more than 350,000 self-published books in print, has worked for 40 years as a teacher and pioneering “healing practitioner.” Here, she turns her attention to changing people’s attitudes about money. Subtitled “10 Secrets for Success and Prosperity in the Third Millennium,” the book shows readers how to redirect their energy and “unscramble their power circuits” to generate wealth.
|Transforming Your Body Image
By Leah Carey
A theater major and former stage manager who once found herself unattractive, Carey runs self-empowerment workshops for women with negative body images, including the aging and cancer patients. Participants learn to write their own stories and enact them onstage. This workshop-based journal, available at www.leahcarey.com, provides 40 days of writing prompts and affirmations aimed at nurturing body acceptance.
By Hugh P. McGrath and Michael Comenetz, Ph.D.’72
Part of the series Currents in Comparative Romance Languages and Literature, this scholarly volume presents the French text and an English translation of Paul Valery’s timeless work “The Graveyard by the Sea.” Included is an analysis of the complex and beautiful 1920 poem, as well as nine chapters on related themes. Since 1975, Comenetz has taught at St. John’s College in Annapolis, Md.
|Five Thousand Years of Slavery
By Marjorie Gann ’69 and Janet Willen
|The Book of Strange and Curious Legal Oddities
By Nathan Belofsky ’81
In Brighton, Mich., it’s illegal to be annoying. In Nevada, you can’t curse in front of a corpse. And whether it’s a round fishbowl, a square pizza, a purple silk dress, landing a flying saucer, or keeping dirty snails in a doctor’s office, you can bet someone, somewhere passed a law against it. New York attorney Belofsky gathered hundreds of legal tidbits to amuse you, outrage you, or just let you know when you’re running afoul of the law.
|An Elusive Unity: Urban Democracy and Machine Politics in Industrializing America
By James J. Connolly ’95
Extolled by Mary Ryan of Johns Hopkins University as “a beautifully written treatment of a critical issue for American historians,” Connolly’s second book on urban politics traces efforts to reconcile democracy and diversity in several industrial cities from the antebellum period through the Progressive Era. A professor at Ball State University, Connolly draws on novels, cartoons, memoirs and news stories to illustrate his account.
|Tabloid Medicine: How the Internet Is Being Used to Hijack Medical Science for Fear and Profit
By Robert Goldberg, Ph.D.’84
Where do you go when you’re sick? For many, the answer is the Web. Yet those who dispense treatment advice and criticism online often are not only inept but dangerous, undermining the legitimate medical profession by encouraging self-diagnosis and sowing fear of lifesaving drugs and practices. Goldberg, co-founder of the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest, calls for ending the misinformation and putting health care back in the hands of scientists and doctors.
|In Her Hands: The Education of Jewish Girls in Tsarist Russia
By Eliyana R. Adler ’95
Adler, visiting professor of Jewish history at the University of Maryland in College Park, dispels misperceptions that Jewish education in Russia was historically reserved for boys. She traces the establishment of girls’ academies in the mid-1800s, discussing their academics, staffing and financing, and demonstrating how such institutions transformed com-munities by providing Jewish families with better inroads for acculturation.
|The Kosher Baker
By Paula Shoyer ’86
Tired of adapting traditional desserts laden with butter and cream? Pastry chef Shoyer, of Paula’s Parisian Pastries Cooking School in Chevy Chase, Md., provides more than 160 dairy-free recipes to help you turn what used to be a fretful challenge into a pursuit of creative cuisine. Delectables range from the basic (corn bread, pound cake, brownies) to the exotic (chocolate mousse truffle cake, layered baklava with orange blossom syrup).
|Life in Miniature
By Linda Schlossberg ’91
In an engaging first novel, Schlossberg, director of the Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies program at Harvard, brings us a fresh first-person heroine. Twelve-year-old Adie, precocious and articulate, yearns to be popular and normal. But those common adolescent aspirations are complicated by the added burdens of diminutive size, an adored runaway older sister, and a paranoid and delusional mom who subjects Adie to an unnecessary life on the run.
|Missionaries in Hawai‘i
Clifford Putney, Ph.D.’95
Putney, assistant professor of history at Bentley University, brings us a biography of pioneering missionaries Peter and Fanny Gulick. Starting in 1828, the couple spent 46 years in Hawaii spreading Christianity and working to preserve island culture. While engaging with kings and queens, the Gulicks helped ensure the success of Hawaii’s first sugar plantation and started the Punahou School, President Barack Obama’s alma mater.
|The Patient in the White Coat: My Odyssey from Health to Illness and Back
By Rosalind Kaplan ’82
In blunt, clear prose, a physician and medical professor shares her riveting journey to “the other side of the curtain” as a patient. Likely contracted from an accidental needle prick in the ER, hepatitis C forced Kaplan to experience the fear and confusion that often confront gravely ill patients as she dealt with tactless doctors, endured unexpected setbacks, and navigated the stresses such a diagnosis can place on a marriage and career.
Brandeis University Press
|German City, Jewish Memory: The Story of Worms
By Nils Roemer, $35
More than a millennium of history and culture fill this rich volume. Roemer, who teaches Holocaust studies at the University of Texas in Austin, illumines medieval Jewish life, the expulsion of Jews, wartime tragedy, cultural and religious renewal, and Jewish-Christian relations from the Middle Ages on. Reviewer Helmut Walser Smith of Vanderbilt University called this “a wonderful book, imaginatively researched, highly informative and daring.”
|Promised Lands: New Jewish American Fiction on Longing and Belonging
Edited by Derek Rubin, $26
A finalist for the 2010 National Jewish Book Award, this anthology holds 23 previously unpublished stories chosen by Rubin, who teaches English at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Contributors, including seasoned fiction writers and newcomers on the literary scene, reflect with candor, humor and a distinctively modern voice on yearning, identity and what it means to be a Jewish American at the start of the 21st century.