Amherst Magazine

Short Takes

Compiled by Katherine Duke ’05

1972 Farm Journal: A Back-to-the-Land Movement Story
By Oakes Plimpton ’54, with George Jacobs ’66 and Ira Karasick ’69, among others (iUniverse)
A transcription of Plimpton’s journal from his summer working on a communal organic farm in central New York State—plus memories from other farming partners and then-and-now photos

The Art of Survival: Essays on Isaac Babel, Ernest Heming­way, Franz Kafka and Joseph Conrad
By Peter Stine ’63 (Rocky Shore Books)
Stine examines the impact of violent world events—such as the Russian Revolution and World War I—on the fiction of four writers. The book is “possibly the most … intellectually stirring literary criticism I have ever encountered,” wrote Joyce Carol Oates.

Dearie: The Louis Betts Portrait of Harriet King Huey
By Michael Huey ’87 (Schlebrügge.Editor)
Michael Huey—a photographer and a descendant of Harriet King “Dearie” Huey—published this book to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Betts’ completion of the portrait.

Die Free: A True Story of Murder, Betrayal and Mis­carried Justice
By Peter Rooney, Amherst director of public affairs (self-published)
As a young reporter covering his first murder trial, Rooney met Joe Burrows, a man wrongfully sentenced to death for killing an elderly Illinois farmer. Available as a Kindle e-book through Amazon.com, Die Free is Rooney’s journalistic narrative of the dramatic case.

The FSG Book of Twentieth-Century Latin American Poetry: An Anthology
Edited by Ilan Stavans, the Lewis-Sebring Professor in Latin American and Latino Culture (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
This anthology includes verse by world-famous figures such as Jorge Luis Borges and less-widely known names such as Gloria Gevirtz. In all, the 84 authors hail from more than a dozen countries and write in nine languages. Each poem is placed alongside an English translation.

Local Redistribution and Local Democracy: Interest Groups and the Courts
By Clayton P. Gillette ’72 (Yale University Press)
Gillette, the Max E. Greenberg Professor of Contract Law at New York University Law School, challenges a traditional argument against local governments’ wealth-redistribution efforts and examines the role of the courts in reviewing these efforts.

The Night Strangers
By Chris Bohjalian ’82 (Crown)
In Bohjalian’s latest novel—a ghost story—a pilot, struggling to cope with the aftermath of a deadly plane crash, moves his family into a rambling Victorian house in a mysterious New Hampshire village. 

Redeeming Democracy in America
By Wilson Carey McWilliams; edited and with an introduction by Patrick J. Deneen and Susan J. McWilliams ’98 (University Press of Kansas)
This volume includes 12 essays, and an ex­tensive bibliography of other publications, by Wilson Carey McWilliams, a prominent political theorist and professor who died in 2005. Susan J. McWilliams, his daughter, is an assistant professor of politics at Pomona College.

Walk Out Walk On: A Learning Journey Into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now
By Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze ’92 (Berrett-Koehler)
The authors, both leaders in the Berkana In­stitute, travel to five continents to find seven examples of “healthy and resilient” communities that have developed inventive ways of solving their own problems.

What’s My Zip Code? The Promise of My Brother’s Life, His Descent Into Mental Illness and His Brutal Murder
By David Stringer ’64 (Crooked Mile Books)
In this Kindle e-book, available through Amazon.com, Stringer reflects upon the troubled life and violent death of his brother, John Stringer ’73, and their family’s response. (See the feature story “Ghost Writer,” by Rand Richards Cooper ’80—along with an excerpt from Stringer’s book—in the Winter 2008 issue of Amherst.) 

When All That’s Left of Me Is Love: A Daughter’s Story of Letting Go
By Linda (Sachsse) Campanella ’80 (Tate Publishing & Enterprises)
Campanella’s memoir of living through and learning from the illness and death of her beloved mother, Nancy Sachsse