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Upon arrival in the United States, most African immigrants are immediately subsumed under the category "black." In the eyes of most Americans--and more so to American legal and social systems--African immigrants are indistinguishable from all others, such as those from the Caribbean whose skin color they share. Despite their growing presence in many cities and their active involvement in sectors of American economic, social, and cultural life, we know little about them.In From Africa to America, Moses O. Biney offers a rare full-scale look at an African immigrant congregation, the Presbyterian Church of Ghana in New York (PCGNY). Through personal stories, notes from participant observation, and interviews, Biney explores the complexities of the social, economic, and cultural adaptation of this group, the difficult moral choices they have to make in order to survive, and the tensions that exist within their faith community. Most notably, through his compelling research Biney shows that such congregations are more than mere "ethnic enclaves," or safe havens from American social and cultural values. Rather, they help maintain the essential balance between cultural acclimation and ethnic preservation needed for these new citizens to flourish.
Cable television, on the brink of a boom in the 1970s, promised audiences a new media frontier-an expansive new variety of entertainment and information choices. Music video, 24-hour news, 24-hour weather, movie channels, children's channels, home shopping, and channels targeting groups based on demographic characteristics or interests were introduced.Cable Visions looks beyond broadcasting's mainstream, toward cable's alternatives, to critically consider the capacity of commercial media to serve the public interest. It offers an overview of the industry's history and regulatory trends, case studies of key cable newcomers aimed at niche markets (including Nickelodeon, BET, and HBO Latino), and analyses of programming forms introduced by cable TV (such as nature, cooking, sports, and history channels).
Since its emergence in the 1960s, belief in alien abduction has saturated popular culture, with the ubiquitous image of the almond-eyed alien appearing on everything from bumper stickers to bars of soap. Drawing on interviews with alleged abductees from the New York area, Bridget Brown suggests a new way for people to think about the alien phenomenon, one that is concerned not with establishing whether aliens actually exist, but with understanding what belief in aliens in America may tell us about our changing understanding of ourselves and our place in the world. They Know Us Better Than We Know Ourselves looks at how the belief in abduction by extraterrestrials is constituted by and through popular discourse and the images provided by print, film, and television. Brown contends that the abduction phenomenon is symptomatic of a period during which people have come to feel increasingly divested of the ability to know what is real or true about themselves and the world in which they live. The alien abduction phenomenon helps us think about how people who feel left out create their own stories and fashion truths that square with their own experience of the world.
A reporter for the Los Angeles Times once noted that "I Love Lucy is said to be on the air somewhere in the world 24 hours a day." That Lucy's madcap antics can be watched anywhere at any time is thanks to television syndication, a booming global marketplace that imports and exports TV shows. Programs from different countries are packaged, bought, and sold all over the world, under the watch of an industry that is extraordinarily lucrative for major studios and production companies.In Global TV, Denise D. Bielb and C. Lee Harrington seek to understand the machinery of this marketplace, its origins and history, its inner workings, and its product management. In so doing, they are led to explore the cultural significance of this global trade, and to ask how it is so remarkably successful despite the inherent cultural differences between shows and local audiences. How do culture-specific genres like American soap operas and Latin telenovelas so easily cross borders and adapt to new cultural surroundings? Why is The Nanny, whose gum-chewing star is from Queens, New York, a smash in Italy? Importantly, Bielby and Harrington also ask which kinds of shows fail. What is lost in translation? Considering such factors as censorship and other such state-specific policies, what are the inevitable constraints of crossing over?Highly experienced in the field, Bielby and Harrington provide a unique and richly textured look at global television through a cultural lens, one that has an undeniable and complex effect on what shows succeed and which do not on an international scale.
A significant number of Sephardic Jews, tracing their remote origins to Spain and Portugal, immigrated to the United States from Turkey, Greece, and the Balkans from 1880 through the 1920s, joined by a smaller number of Mizrahi Jews arriving from Arab lands. Most Sephardim settled in New York, establishing the leading Judeo-Spanish community outside the Ottoman Empire. With their distinct languages, cultures, and rituals, Sephardim and Arab-speaking Mizrahim were not readily recognized as Jews by their Ashkenazic coreligionists. At the same time, they forged alliances outside Jewish circles with Hispanics and Arabs, with whom they shared significant cultural and linguistic ties.The failure among Ashkenazic Jews to recognize Sephardim and Mizrahim as fellow Jews continues today. More often than not, these Jewish communities are simply absent from portrayals of American Jewry. Drawing on primary sources such as the Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) press, archival documents, and oral histories, Sephardic Jews in America offers the first book-length academic treatment of their history in the United States, from 1654 to the present, focusing on the age of mass immigration.
The vast majority of Americans have, at one point or another gotten drunk, smoked, dabbled with drugs, gambled, sworn or engaged in adultery. During the 1800s, respectable people struggled to control these behaviors, labeling them bad and the people who indulged in them unrespectable. In the twentieth century, however, these minor vices were transformed into a societal complex of enormous and pervasive influence. Yet the general belief persists that these activities remain merely harmless bad habits, individual transgressions more than social problems. Not so, argues distinguished historian John C. Burnham, in this pioneering study. In Bad Habits, Burnham traces the growth of a veritable minor vice-industrial complex. As it grew, activities that might have been harmless, natural, and sociable fun resulted in fundamental social change. When Burnham set out to explore the influence of these bad habits on American society, he sought to discover why so many good people engaged in activities that many, including they themselves, considered bad. What he found, however, was a coalition of economic and social interests in which the single-minded quest for profit allied with the values of the Victorian saloon underworld and bohemian rebelliousness. This combination radically inverted common American standards of personal conduct. Bad Habits, then, describes, in words and pictures, how more and more Americans learned to value hedonism and self-gratification-to smoke and swear during World War I, to admire cabaret night life, and to reject schoolmarmish standards in the age of Prohibition. Tracing the evolution of each of the bad habits, Burnham tells how liquor control boards encouraged the consumption of alcohol; how alcoholic beverage producers got their workers deferred from the draft during World War II; how convenience stores and accounting firms pursued profits by pushing legalized gambling; how swinging Playboy bankrolled a drug advocacy group; how advertising and television made the Marlboro Man a national hero; how drug paraphernalia was promoted by national advertisers; how a practical joker/drug addict caused a shortage of kitty litter on Long Island; and how the evolution of an entire sex therapy industry helped turn sexual experience into a new kind of commodity. Altogether, a lot of people made a lot of money. But what, the author asks, did these changes cost American society? This illustrated tour de force by one of the most distinctive and important voices in social history reveals John C. Burnham at his provocative and controversial best.
"This moving account of a key figure in American history contributes greatly to our understanding of the past. It also informs our vision of the servant leader needed to guide the 1990s movement."-Marian Wright Edelman, President, Children's Defense Fund "First-rate intellectual and political history, this study explores the relations between the practical objectives of SNCC and its moral and cultural goals."-Irwin Unger, Author of These United States and Postwar America "Robert Moses emerges from these pages as that rare modern hero, the man whose life enacts his principles, the rebel who steadfastly refuses to be victim or executioner and who mistrusts even his own leadership out of commitment to cultivating the strength, self-reliance, and solidarity of those with and for whom he is working. Eric Burner's engrossing account of Robert Moses's legendary career brings alive the everyday realities of the Civil Rights Movement, especially the gruelling campaign for voter registration and political organization in Mississippi."-Elizabeth Fox-Genovese, Eleonore Raoul Professor of the Humanities, Emory University, author of Within the Plantation Household: Black and White Women of the Old South Next to Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X, Bob Moses was arguably one of the most influential and respected leaders of the civil rights movement. Quiet and intensely private, Moses quickly became legendary as a man whose conduct exemplified leadership by example. He once resigned as head of the Council of Federated Organizations because "my position there was too strong, too central." Despite his centrality to the most important social movement in modern American history, Moses' life and the philosophy on which it is based have only been given cursory treatment and have never been the subject of a book-length biography. Biography is, by its very nature, a complicated act of recovery, even more so when the life under scrutiny deliberately avoids such attention. Eric Burner therefore sets out here not to reveal the "secret" Bob Moses, but to examine his moral philosophy and his political and ideological evolution, to provide a picture of the public person. In essence, his book provides a primer on a figure who spoke by silence and led through example. Moses spent almost three years in Mississippi trying to awaken the state's black citizens to their moral and legal rights before the fateful summer of 1964 would thrust him and the Freedom Summer movement into the national spotlight. We follow him through the civil rights years - his intensive, fearless tradition of community organizing, his involvements with SNCC and the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, and his negotiations with the Department of Justice -as Burner chronicles both Moses' political activity and his intellectual development, revealing the strong influence of French philosopher Albert Camus on his life and work. Moses' life is marked by the conflict between morality and politics, between purity and pragmatism, which ultimately left him disillusioned with a traditional Left that could talk only of coalitions and leaders from the top. Pursued by the Vietnam draft board for a war which he opposed, Moses fled to Canada in 1966 before departing for Africa in 1969 to spend the next decade teaching in Tanzania. Returning in 1977 under President Carter's amnesty program, he was awarded a five-year MacArthur genius grant in 1982 to establish and develop an innovative program to teach math to Boston's inner-city youth called the Algebra Project. The success of the program, which Moses has referred to as our version of Civil Rights 1992, has landed him on the cover of The New York Times Magazineemphasizing the new, central dimension that math and computer literacy lends to the pursuit of equal rights. And Gently He Shall Lead Them is the story of a remarkable man, an elusive hero of the civil rights movement whose flight from adulation has only served to increase his reputation as an intellectual and moral leader, a man whom nobody ever sees, but whose work is al...
American Collegiate Populations is an exhaustive and definitive study of the membership of American colleges and universities in the nineteenth century. Colin B. Burke explores the questions of who went, who stayed and where they came from, presenting as answers to these questions a mass of new data put together in an original and interpretive manner.The author offers a devastating critique of the two reference works which until now have commanded scholars' attention. Burke examines Bailey Burritt's Professional Distribution of College and University Undergraduates (1912) noting that Burritt's categories oversimplify the data of the 37 institutions he studies. Donald G. Tewksbury's American Colleges and Universities Before the Civil War (1932), the author explains, presents a skewed interpretation of collegiate decline in the antebellum period. Using a far larger data base and capitalizing on the advances in quantitative history made in the last decade, Burke adopts appropriate analytic categories for college students and their subsequent careers. Amierican Collegiate Populations thus becomes the referent work to replace Burritt and Tewksbury and will likely have an equal longevity in print.American Collegiate Populations systematically compares denominational colleges, colleges by region, and student groups from a host of angles - age entering college, geographical origins, parental occupations. subsequent careers, and professional choices. Burke shows the reach of American colleges back into the socio-economic fabric of the culture. a reach that carries implications for many subjects - religious, economic, social, and intellectual - beyond the mere subject of college alone.Few works force the re-thinking of a whole field of historical inquiry - particularly one that has important bearings on current policy - as Burke's study does. The findings and implications presented in American Collegiate Populations will profoundly affect the scholarly community for decades to come.
The weather in Moscow is good, there's no cholera, there's also no lesbian love...Brrr! Remembering those persons of whom you write me makes me nauseous as if I'd eaten a rotten sardine. Moscow doesn't have them--and that's marvellous."-Anton Chekhov, writing to his publisher in 1895 Chekhov's barbed comment suggests the climate in which Sophia Parnok was writing, and is an added testament to to the strength and confidence with which she pursued both her personal and artistic life. Author of five volumes of poetry, and lover of Marina Tsvetaeva, Sophia Parnok was the only openly lesbian voice in Russian poetry during the Silver Age of Russian letters. Despite her unique contribution to modern Russian lyricism however, Parnok's life and work have essentially been forgotten. Parnok was not a political activist, and she had no engagement with the feminism vogueish in young Russian intellectual circles. From a young age, however, she deplored all forms of male posturing and condescension and felt alienated from what she called patriarchal virtues. Parnok's approach to her sexuality was equally forthright. Accepting lesbianism as her natural disposition, Parnok acknowledged her relationships with women, both sexual and non-sexual, to be the centre of her creative existence. Diana Burgin's extensively researched life of Parnok is deliberately woven around the poet's own account, visible in her writings. The book is divided into seven chapters, which reflect seven natural divisions in Parnok's life. This lends Burgin's work a particular poetic resonance, owing to its structural affinity with one of Parnok's last and greatest poetic achievements, the cycle of love lyrics Ursa Major. Dedicated to her last lover, Parnok refers to this cycle as a seven-star of verses, after the seven stars that make up the constellation. Parnok's poems, translated here for the first time in English, added to a wealth of biographical material, make this book a fascinating and lyrical account of an important Russian poet. Burgin's work is essential reading for students of Russian literature, lesbian history and women's studies.
Pirates are among the most heavily romanticized and fabled characters in history. From Bluebeard to Captain Hook, they have been the subject of countless movies, books, children's tales, even a world-famous amusement park ride. In Sodomy and the Pirate Tradition, historian B. R. Burg investigates the social and sexual world of these sea rovers, a tightly bound brotherhood of men engaged in almost constant warfare. What, he asks, did these men, often on the high seas for years at a time, do for sexual fulfillment? Buccaneer sexuality differed widely from that of other all- male institutions such as prisons, for it existed not within a regimented structure of rule, regulations, and oppressive supervision, but instead operated in a society in which widespread toleration of homosexuality was the norm and conditions encouraged its practice. In his new introduction, Burg discusses the initial response to the book when it was published in 1983 and how our perspectives on all-male societies have since changed.
On May 29, 1917, Mrs. E. M. Craise, citizen of Denver, Colorado, penned a letter to President Woodrow Wilson, which concluded, We have surrendered to your absolute control our hearts' dearest treasures--our sons. If their precious bodies that have cost us so dear should be torn to shreds by German shot and shells we will try to live on in the hope of meeting them again in the blessed Country of happy reunions. But, Mr. President, if the hell-holes that infest their training camps should trip up their unwary feet and they be returned to us besotted degenerate wrecks of their former selves cursed with that hell-born craving for alcohol, we can have no such hope. Anxious about the United States' pending entry into the Great War, fearful that their sons would be polluted by the scourges of prostitution, venereal disease, illicit sex, and drink that ran rampant in the training camps, countless Americans sent such missives to their government officials. In response to this deluge, President Wilson created the Commission on Training Camp Activities to ensure the purity of the camp environment. Training camps would henceforth mold not only soldiers, but model citizens who, after the war, would return to their communities, spreading white, urban, middle-class values throughout the country. What began as a federal program designed to eliminate sexually transmitted diseases soon mushroomed into a powerful social force intent on replacing America's many cultures with a single, homogenous one. Though committed to the positive methods of education and recreation, the reformers did not hesitate to employ repression when necessary. Those not conforming to the prescribed vision of masculinity often faced exclusion from the reformers' idealized society, or sometimes even imprisonment. Social engineering ruled the day. Combining social, cultural, and military history and illustrating the deep divisions among reformers themselves, Nancy K. Bristow, with the aid of dozens of evocative photographs, here brings to life a pivotal era in the history of the U.S., revealing the complex relationship between the nation's competing cultures, progressive reform efforts, and the Great War.
Many of America's most important social and political movements--abolition, women's suffragette, civil rights, women's liberation, gay and lesbian rights--have organized in the shadow of the law. All are based in their theoretical opposition to the law. Yet at the same time, they are dependent on the laws that prohibit them. Law is thus formed as much through the dynamic tensions that govern how these laws are received as through their official decree. Legal forms such as contracts, property, and rights also constitute social and political life because they structure our world. John Brigham here focuses on four ideological movements and their strategies, among them the struggle over the closing of gay bathhouses in the early years of the AIDS crisis and the radical feminist use of rage and radical consciousness in anti- pornography campaigns. The effect of law on politics, Brigham convincingly reveals, is pervasive precisely because political life finds its expression in a surprising variety of legal forms.
In this important book, Elaine Breslaw claims to have rediscovered Tituba, the elusive, mysterious, and often mythologized Indian woman accused of witchcraft in Salem in 1692 and immortalized in Arthur Miller's The Crucible. Reconstructing the life of the slave woman at the center of the notorious Salem witch trials, the book follows Tituba from her likely origins in South America to Barbados, forcefully dispelling the commonly-held belief that Tituba was African. The uniquely multicultural nature of life on a seventeenth-century Barbadan sugar plantation--defined by a mixture of English, American Indian, and African ways and folklore--indelibly shaped the young Tituba's world and the mental images she brought with her to Massachusetts.Breslaw divides Tituba's story into two parts. The first focuses on Tituba's roots in Barbados, the second on her life in the New World. The author emphasizes the inextricably linked worlds of the Caribbean and the North American colonies, illustrating how the Puritan worldview was influenced by its perception of possessed Indians. Breslaw argues that Tituba's confession to practicing witchcraft clearly reveals her savvy and determined efforts to protect herself by actively manipulating Puritan fears. This confession, perceived as evidence of a diabolical conspiracy, was the central agent in the cataclysmic series of events that saw 19 people executed and over 150 imprisoned, including a young girl of 5.A landmark contribution to women's history and early American history, Tituba, Reluctant Witch of Salem sheds new light on one of the most painful episodes in American history, through the eyes of its most crucial participant.
First published in 1797, The Columbian Orator helped shape the American mind for the next half century, going through some 23 editions and totaling 200,000 copies in sales. The book was read by virtually every American schoolboy in the first half of the 19th century. As a slave youth, Frederick Douglass owned just one book, and read it frequently, referring to it as a "gem" and his "rich treasure." The Columbian Orator presents 84 selections, most of which are notable examples of oratory on such subjects as nationalism, religious faith, individual liberty, freedom, and slavery, including pieces by Washington, Franklin, Milton, Socrates, and Cicero, as well as heroic poetry and dramatic dialogues. Augmenting these is an essay on effective public speaking which influenced Abraham Lincoln as a young politician. As America experiences a resurgence of interest in the art of debating and oratory, The Columbian Orator--whether as historical artifact or contemporary guidebook--is one of those rare books to be valued for what it meant in its own time, and for how its ideas have endured. Above all, this book is a remarkable compilation of Enlightenment era thought and language that has stood the test of time.
When we talk about what "freedom of speech" means in America, the discussion almost always centers on freedom rather than speech. Taking for granted that speech is an unambiguous and stable category, we move to considering how much freedom speech should enjoy. But, as Randall Bezanson demonstrates in Speech Stories, speech is a much more complicated and dynamic notion than we often assume. In an age of rapidly accelerated changes in discourse combined with new technologies of communication, the boundaries and substance of what we traditionally deem speech are being reconfigured in novel and confusing ways. In order to spark thought, discussion, and debate about these complexities and ambiguities, Bezanson probes the "stories" behind seven controversial free speech cases decided by the Supreme Court. These stories touch upon the most controversial and significant of contemporary first amendment issues: government restrictions on hate speech and obscene and indecent speech; pornography and the subordination of women; the constitutionality of campaign finance reform; and the treatment to be accorded new technologies of communication under the Constitution. The result is a provocative engagement of the reader in thinking about the puzzles and paradoxes of our commitment to free expression.
What sorts of cultural criticism are teachers and scholars to produce, and how can that criticism be "employed" in the culture at large? In recent years, debates about the role and direction of English departments have mushroomed into a broader controversy over the public legitimacy of literary criticism. At first glance this might seem odd: few taxpayers and legislators care whether the nation's English professors are doing justice to the project of identifying the beautiful and the sublime. But in the context of the legitimation crisis in American higher education, the image of English departments has in fact played a major role in determining public attitudes toward colleges and college faculty. Similarly, the changing economic conditions of universities have prompted many English professors to rethink their relations to their "clients," asking how literary study can serve the American public. What sorts of cultural criticism are teachers and scholars to produce, and how can that criticism be "employed" in the culture at large? In The Employment of English, Michael Bérubé, one of our most eloquent and gifted critics, examines the cultural legitimacy of literary study. In witty, engaging prose, Bérubé asserts that we must situate these questions in a context in which nearly half of all college professors are part-time labor and in which English departments are torn between their traditional mission of defining movements of literary history and protocols of textual interpretation, and their newer tasks of interrogating wider systems of signification under rubrics like "gender," "hegemony," "rhetoric," "textuality" (including film and video), and "culture." Are these new roles a betrayal of the field's founding principles, in effect a short-sighted sell-out of the discipline? Do they represent little more that an attempt to shore up the status of--and student enrollments in--English? Or are they legitimate objects of literary study, in need of public support? Simultaneously investigating the economic and the intellectual ramifications of current debates, The Employment of English provides the clearest and most condensed account of this controversy to date.
The epidemic of mass rape in the former Yugoslavia has illustrated once again, and in particularly brutal fashion, the inextricable relationship between national politics, sexual politics, and body politics. The nexus of these three forces is highly charged in any culture, at any time in history, but especially so among cultures in which rapid, even cataclysmic, changes in material realities and national self-conceptions are eroding or overwhelming previously secure boundaries.The postcommunist moment in the so-called Second World--Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union--has dramatically exposed the opportunities and dangers that arise when the political, cultural, and economic foundations of a society are de- and then re-structured. Gender roles and relations, expressions of sexuality or attempts to recontain them, representations of the body, especially the female body, and the larger, cultural meanings it assumes, are particularly marked sites to witness the performance of complex national dramas of crisis and change.This groundbreaking volume turns its attention to the Second World, specifically to such subjects as the birth of the sex media and porn industry in Russia; Russian women and alcoholism; cinema in post-communist Hungary; patriotism and gender in Poland; sexual dissidence in Eastern Europe; and women in the former Yugoslavia. >[ go to the Genders website ]
A serious and independent contribution to the literature of autobiography.-- John SturrockFrench StudiesClearly a landmark study. It seems certain to provoke a great deal of productive debate among those concerned with any of the many issues it raises.-- Comparative Literature The literary self-portrait, often considered to be an ill- formed autobiography, is receiving more attention as a result of the current obsession with personal narrative, but little progress has been made toward an understanding of its specific features. With Poetics of the Literary Self-Portrait, Michel Beaujour reveals the hidden ambitions of this genre. From St. Augustine to Montaigne, from Nietzsche to Malraux, Leiris and Barthes, individual self-portraits are analyzed jointly with the enduring cultural matrix from which self-portrayal derives its disconcerting non-narrative structure, and many of its recurrent topics.
At the height of the Vietnam War, American society was so severely fragmented that it seemed that Americans may never again share common concerns. The media and other commentators represented the impact of the war through a variety of rhetorical devices, most notably the emotionally charged metaphor of "the wound that will not heal." References in various contexts to veterans' attempts to find a "voice," and to bring the war "home" were also common. Gradually, an assured and resilient American self-image and powerful impressions of cultural collectivity transformed the Vietnam war into a device for maintaining national unity. Today, the war is portrayed as a healed wound, the once "silenced" veteran has found a voice, and the American home has accommodated the effects of Vietnam. The scar has healed, binding Americans into a union that denies the divisions, diversities, and differences exposed by the war. In this way, America is now "over" Vietnam. In The Scar That Binds, Keith Beattie examines the central metaphors of the Vietnam war and their manifestations in American culture and life. Blending history and cultural criticism in a lucid style, this provocative book discusses an ideology of unity that has emerged through widespread rhetorical and cultural references to the war. A critique of this ideology reveals three dominant themes structured in a range of texts: the "wound," "the voice" of the Vietnam veteran, and "home." The analysis of each theme draws on a range of sources, including film, memoir, poetry, written and oral history, journalism, and political speeches. In contrast to studies concerned with representations of the war as a combat experience, The Scar That Binds opens and examines an unexplored critical space through a focus on the effects of the Vietnam War on American culture. The result is a highly original and compelling interpretation of the development of an ideology of unity in our culture.
Elaine Baruch is not only among the most quiet-voiced and fair-minded of feminist writers. She is also among the most far-ranging in her scholarship, equally at ease with the writers of the Renaissance and Freud, the medieval troubadours, and our contemporary polemicists. . . instructive, absorbing, and persuasive.--Diana Trilling A lively mind is at work here and a keen and witty writer too.--Irving HoweThis is a fine collection of essays. . . making many imaginative conjectures and amusing connections.--Times Literary SupplementIn these essays what emerges is a history of romantic love. . . Highly recommended.--Library Journal Arguing that romantic love need not be a tool of women's oppression, feminist critic Baruch. . . contends that unacknowledged male fantasies about love motivate much literature by men. . . rewarding, provocative.--Publishers Weekly Utilizing both Freudian and non-Freudian psychoanalysis as well as feminist criticism, Baruch examines literary works by women and men from medieval and Romantic periods as well as cultural observations on the twentieth century and how they have influenced attitudes toward love.
The number of people incarcerated in the U.S. now exceeds 2.3 million, due in part to the increasing criminalization of drug use: over 25% of people incarcerated in jails and prisons are there for drug offenses. Judging Addicts examines this increased criminalization of drugs and the medicalization of addiction in the U.S. by focusing on drug courts, where defendants are sent to drug treatment instead of prison. Rebecca Tiger explores how advocates of these courts make their case for what they call "enlightened coercion," detailing how they use medical theories of addiction to justify increased criminal justice oversight of defendants who, through this process, are defined as both "sick" and "bad." Tiger shows how these courts fuse punitive and therapeutic approaches to drug use in the name of a "progressive" and "enlightened" approach to addiction. She critiques the medicalization of drug users, showing how the disease designation can complement, rather than contradict, punitive approaches, demonstrating that these courts are neither unprecedented nor unique, and that they contain great potential to expand punitive control over drug users. Tiger argues that the medicalization of addiction has done little to stem the punishment of drug users because of a key conceptual overlap in the medical and punitive approaches--that habitual drug use is a problem that needs to be fixed through sobriety. Judging Addicts presses policymakers to implement humane responses to persistent substance use that remove its control entirely from the criminal justice system and ultimately explores the nature of crime and punishment in the U.S. today.
In Historically Black, Mieka Brand Polanco examines the concept of community in the United States: how communities are experienced and understood, the complex relationship between human beings and their social and physical landscapes--and how the term "community" is sometimes conjured to feign a cohesiveness that may not actually exist. Drawing on ethnographic and historical materials from Union, Virginia, Historically Black offers a nuanced and sensitive portrait of a federally recognized Historic District under the category "Ethnic Heritage--Black." Since Union has been home to a racially mixed population since at least the late 19th century, calling it "historically black" poses some curious existential questions to the black residents who currently live there. Union's identity as a "historically black community" encourages a perception of the town as a monochromatic and monohistoric landscape, effectively erasing both old-timer white residents and newcomer black residents while allowing newer white residents to take on a proud role as preservers of history. Gestures to "community" gloss an oversimplified perspective of race, history and space that conceals much of the richness (and contention) of lived reality in Union, as well as in the larger United States. They allow Americans to avoid important conversations about the complex and unfolding nature by which groups of people and social/physical landscapes are conceptualized as a single unified whole. This multi-layered, multi-textured ethnography explores a key concept, inviting public conversation about the dynamic ways in which race, space, and history inform our experiences and understanding of community.
"An indispensable and provocative guide through the thicket of today's most challenging constitutional controversies by some of the most eminent judges of their time. It offers an invaluable peek behind the curtain of judicial decision making." --David Cole, Professor of Law, Georgetown University The Embattled Constitution presents the fourth collection of the James Madison lectures delivered at the NYU School of Law, offering thoughtful examinations of an array of topics on civil liberties by a distinguished group of federal judges, including Justice Stephen Breyer of the U.S. Supreme Court. The result is a fascinating look into the minds of the judges who interpret, apply, and give meaning to our "embattled Constitution." In these insightful and incisive essays, the authors bring to bear decades of experience to explore wide-ranging issues. Are today's public schools racially segregated? To what extent can the federal courts apply the Bill of Rights without legislative guidance? And what are the criteria for the highest standards of judging and constitutional interpretation? The authors also discuss how and why the Constitution came to be embattled, shining a spotlight on the current polarization in both the Supreme Court and the American body politic and offering careful and informed analysis of how to bridge these divides. Contributors include Marsha S. Berzon, Michael Boudin, Stephen Breyer, Guido Calabresi, Robert H. Henry, Robert Katzmann, Pierre N. Leval, M. Blane Michael, Davis S. Tatel, J. Harvie Wilkinson, III, and Diane P. Wood.
"Look! There in the playground -- with the stroller and diaper bag! It's Superdad! Yes, it's Superdad--the most involved fathers in American history. And with this careful, compassionate and also critical group portrait, Gayle Kaufman has finally told their story. If you think men aren't changing--or if you think they somehow get neutered if they are changing--you need to read this book."--Michael Kimmel, author of Guyland In an age when fathers are spending more time with their children than at any other point in the past, men are also facing unprecedented levels of work-family conflict. How do fathers balance their two most important roles--that of father and that of worker? In Superdads, Gayle Kaufman captures the real voices of fathers themselves as they talk about their struggles with balancing work and family life. Through in-depth interviews with a diverse group of men, Kaufman introduces the concept of "superdads", a group of fathers who stand out by making significant changes to their work lives in order to accommodate their families. They are nothing like their fathers, "old dads" who focus on their traditional role as breadwinner, or even some of their peers, so-called "new dads" who work around the increasing demands of their paternal roles without really bucking the system. In taking their family life in a completely new direction, these superdads challenge the way we think about long-held assumptions about men's role in the family unit. Thought-provoking and heartfelt, Superdads provides an overview of an emerging trend in fatherhood and the policy solutions that may help support its growth, pointing the way toward a future society with a more feasible approach to the work-family divide.
Choice Outstanding Academic Title 2003Black Garden is the definitive study of how Armenia and Azerbaijan, two southern Soviet republics, got sucked into a conflict that helped bring them to independence, bringing to an end the Soviet Union, and plaguing a region of great strategic importance. It cuts between a careful reconstruction of the history of Nagorny Karabakh conflict since 1988 and on-the-spot reporting on its convoluted aftermath. Part contemporary history, part travel book, part political analysis, the book is based on six months traveling through the south Caucasus, more than 120 original interviews in the region, Moscow, and Washington, and unique primary sources, such as Politburo archives. The historical chapters trace how the conflict lay unresolved in the Soviet era; how Armenian and Azerbaijani leaders exacerbated it; how the Politiburo failed to cope with the crisis; how the war began and ended; how the international community failed to sort out the conflict. What emerges is a complex and subtle portrait of a beautiful and fascinating region, blighted by historical prejudice and conflict.