Amherst Magazine

Short Takes

Compiled by Katherine Duke '05

American Higher Education Transformed, 1940-2005: Documenting the National Discourse. Edited by Wilson Smith ’44 and Thomas Bender. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008. 521 pp. $80 hardcover.
The 172 documents in this volume—including Supreme Court decisions and government reports—illustrate changes in American academia and in its responses to broader societal issues. Smith is professor emeritus of history at UC Davis.

The Bardo of Waking Life. By Richard Grossinger ’66. Berkeley, Calif.: North Atlantic Books, 2008. 517 pp. $15.95 paperback.
Grossinger—an anthropologist and a prolific writer—presents, in five “cycles,” meditations on nature, travel, spirituality and personal and global events.

The Boston Cosmopolitans: International Travel and American Arts and Letters. By Mark Rennella ’87. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008. 280 pp. $74.95 hardcover.
Henry James and Charles Eliot Norton were among the many intellectuals writing in Boston and traveling around the world in the years between the Civil War and World War I. Rennella, a business researcher, traces their careers.

Butter and rum. Music by Matt Jones ’05. New York: Bobby Sichran, 2007. 13 minutes. $5 CD.
A student of jazz and Brazilian maracatu at Amherst and now living and performing in New York City, Jones does guitar and vocals on four original acoustic folk songs. The band includes Pete Weiss ’05.

Fast Profits in Hard Times: 10 Secret Strategies to Make You Rich in an Up or Down Economy. By Jordan E. Goodman ’76. New York: Hachette Book Group USA, 2008. 244 pp. $23.99 hardcover.
Goodman, who has offered financial advice to millions of people at seminars and in the media, lets the average investor in on options and tactics.

He Typed. She Typed. By Amy Turner and Mark Van Wye ’90. Los Angeles: Full Court Press, 2007. 226 pp. $16.95 paperback.
Part romantic comedy and part dating guide, this book takes the form of a series of flirtatious e-mails. (Hear the authors talk with Dr. Drew Pinsky ’80 at www.west woodone.com/drew.) Van Wye founded Mr. Gad’s House of Improv at Amherst.

Healthcare, Guaranteed: A Simple, Secure Solu­tion for America. By Ezekiel J. Emanuel ’79, M.D. New York: PublicAffairs, 2008. 203 pp. $14.95 paperback.
This book describes Emanuel’s Guaranteed Healthcare Access Plan, an insurance voucher system that he believes could solve the nation’s healthcare crisis.

In an Abusive State: How Neoliberalism Appro­priated the Feminist Movement Against Sexual Violence. By Kristin Bumiller, professor of political science and women’s and gender studies. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 2008. 215 pp. $22.95 paperback.
Bumiller examines high-profile rape trials, the lives of abused women and discourse on sexual violence to show how government bureaucracies and policies have become entangled with the feminist anti-violence movement.

Judges: A Commentary. By Susan Niditch, Samuel Green Professor of Religion. Louisville, Ky.: Westminster John Knox, 2008. 290 pp. $44.95 hardcover.
Published as part of the Old Testament Library Series, this book explores narrative technique, gender, violence and ethnicity in the Book of Judges.

Matrix Theory: From Generalized Inverses to Jordan Form. By Robert Piziak ’64 and P.L. Odell. Boca Raton, Fla.: Chapman & Hall/CRC, 2007. 548 pp. $89.95 hardcover.
This textbook guides students from introductory principles through more advanced concepts in linear and multilinear algebra. Piziak is a professor of mathematics at Baylor University.

The River Lock: One Boy’s Life Along the Mohawk. By Stephen Haven ’79. Syracuse, N.Y.: Syracuse University Press, 2008. 175 pp. $19.95 hardcover.
In addition to this memoir, Haven recently published the poetry collection Dust and Bread and The Enemy in Defensive Positions: Poems from China (with Wang Shouyi and Jin Zhong), a chapbook of collaborative translations. Haven directs the Ashland Poetry Press and a creative writing program at Ashland University in Ohio.

To-Do List: From Buying Milk to Finding a Soul Mate, What Our Lists Reveal About Us. By Sasha Cagen ’96. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2007. 240 pp. $16 paperback.
This book (with its companion blog, www.todolistblog.com) assembles real lists scrawled by people of all ages and walks of life.

Wilbur’s Story: A Personal View of the Role of France in Wilbur Wright’s Life. By Donald B. Holmes ’50. Lulu Press, 2008. 180 pp. $23.25 paperback.
In 1908, the aviation pioneer Wilbur Wright made a series of historic flights in France. In time for the centennial commemoration, Holmes presents Wilbur’s Story, illustrated with historical images.