This selection is the first statewide collection of life histories from the Social-Ethnic Studies program of the Federal Writers's Project. They represent for ethnic history what the more famous Federal Writers' Project's Slave Narratives have meant for African-American history.
In this absorbing account of life with the great atomic scientist Enrico Fermi, Laura Fermi tells the story of their emigration to the United States in the 1930s—part of the widespread movement of scientists from Europe to the New World that was so important to the development of the first atomic bomb. Combining intellectual biography and social history, Laura Fermi traces her husband's career from his childhood, when he taught himself physics, through his rise in the Italian university system concurrent with the rise of fascism, to his receipt of the Nobel Prize, which offered a perfect opportunity to flee the country without arousing official suspicion, and his odyssey to the United States.
In this wide-ranging conversation with the Italian journalist Luigi Geninazzi, Cardinal Angelo Scola discusses both the salient moments of his own life and the path and situation of the Church and society in Europe over the last half-century. The Cardinal recounts his life, speaking of the extraordinary gift of particular friendships he has had, starting with Luigi Giussani, founder of the ecclesial movement Communion and Liberation (CL), and moving on to discuss Hans Urs von Balthasar, Henri De Lubac, and Joseph Ratzinger.
A figure who bridges the past three pontificates, Scola discusses his relationships with St. John Paul II, by whom he was nominated a bishop at the relatively young age of forty nine; Benedict XVI, with whom he has had an intense intellectual friendship for decades; and Pope Francis, of whom he speaks with affection and hope.
At the center of this rich fresco of anecdotes and reflections stands a crucial question: what is the true path of the Church today? Between those who reduce Christianity to a mere civil religion and those who propose a purist return to the Gospel, the cardinal indicates a "third way" by betting on the freedom of the human person to recognize the supreme value of Christ. This is at the same time a bet on the active commitment of believers to contribute, starting from faith, to the birth of a new Europe, inevitably more diverse but no loss of its identity.
In his memoir, David Sorensen explores his identity as a coda, or a child of Deaf adults. He describes his experiences with the roles often placed on codas at a young age, such as interpreter, confidant, and decision-maker. His story reveals a person seeking acceptance and belonging while straddling the Deaf and hearing worlds, and shows how he found reconciliation within himself and with both worlds.
Sorensen relays the dynamics of his family life; he had a strained relationship with his father, who was an active leader and role model in the Deaf community and the Mormon Church, yet struggled to bond with his own son. Sorensen rebelled as a youth and left home as a teenager, completely detaching from the Deaf community. After struggling to establish himself as an independent adult, he discovered that he wanted to return to the Deaf world and use his ASL fluency and cultural understanding as a mental health therapist and community advocate. Now he considers himself an ambassador between the Deaf and hearing worlds, as well as between the older and younger generations of Deaf people. Between Two Worlds: My Life as a Child of Deaf Adults shares the unique experiences of a coda and passes on the rich cultural past shared by the American Deaf community.
President Lyndon Johnson never understood it. Neither did President Richard Nixon. How could a black man, a Republican no less, be elected to the United States Senate from liberal, Democratic Massachusetts-a state with an African American population of only 2 percent?
The mystery of Senator Edward Brooke's meteoric rise from Boston lawyer to Massachusetts attorney general to the first popularly elected African American U.S. senator with some of the highest favorable ratings of any Massachusetts politician confounded many of the best political minds of the day. After winning a name for himself as the first black man to be elected a state's attorney general, as a crime fighter, and as the organizer of the Boston Strangler Task Force, this articulate and charismatic man burst on the national scene in 1966 when he ran for the Senate.
In two terms in the Senate during some of the most racially tormented years of the twentieth century, Brooke, through tact, personality, charm, and determination, became a highly regarded member of "the most exclusive club in the world." The only African American senator ever to be elected to a second term, Brooke established a reputation for independent thinking and challenged the powerbrokers and presidents of the day in defense of the poor and disenfranchised.
In this autobiography, Brooke details the challenges that confronted African American men of his generation and reveals his desire to be measured not as a black man in a white society but as an individual in a multiracial society. Chided by some in the white community as being "too black to be white" and in the black community as "too white to be black," Brooke sought only to represent the people of Massachusetts and the national interest.
His story encompasses the turbulent post-World War II years, from the gains of the civil rights movement, through the riotous 1960s, to the dark days of Watergate, with stories of his relationships with the Kennedys, Martin Luther King Jr., Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, Henry Kissinger, Colin Powell, and future senator Hillary Clinton. Brooke also speaks candidly of his personal struggles, including his bitter divorce from his first wife and, most recently, his fight against cancer.
A dramatic, compelling, and inspirational account, Brooke's life story demonstrates the triumph of the human spirit, offering lessons about politics, life, reconciliation, and love.
Bringing Aztlán to Mexican Chicago is the autobiography of Jóse Gamaliel González, an impassioned artist willing to risk all for the empowerment of his marginalized and oppressed community. Through recollections emerging in a series of interviews conducted over a period of six years by his friend Marc Zimmerman, González looks back on his life and his role in developing Mexican, Chicano, and Latino art as a fundamental dimension of the city he came to call home.
Born near Monterey, Mexico, and raised in a steel mill town in northwest Indiana, González studied art at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Notre Dame. Settling in Chicago, he founded two major art groups: El Movimiento Artístico Chicano (MARCH) in the 1970s and Mi Raza Arts Consortium (MIRA) in the 1980s.
With numerous illustrations, this book portrays González's all-but-forgotten community advocacy, his commitments and conflicts, and his long struggle to bring quality arts programming to the city. By turns dramatic and humorous, his narrative also covers his bouts of illness, his relationships with other artists and arts promoters, and his place within city and barrio politics.
"John Tishman is a true pioneer in the Construction Management industry. Through his CM leadership, some of America's most well-known buildings have been brought to successful completion."
---Bruce D'Agostino, president and chief executive, Construction Management Association of America
"Building Tall will provide readers with insights into John Tishman's career as a visionary engineer, landmark builder, and great businessman. Responsible for some of the construction world's most magnificent projects, John is one of the preeminent alumni in the history of Michigan Engineering. His perspectives have helped me throughout my time as dean, and his impact will influence generations of Construction Management professionals and students."
---David C. Munson, Jr., Robert J. Vlasic Dean of Engineering, University of Michigan
In this memoir, University of Michigan graduate John L. Tishman recounts the experiences and rationale that led him to create the entirely new profession now recognized and practiced as Construction Management. It evolved from his work as the construction lead of the "owner/builder" firm Tishman Realty and Construction, and his personal role as hands-on Construction Manager in the building of an astonishing array of what were at the time the world's tallest and most complex projects. These include
The world's first three 100-story towers---the original "twin towers" of the World Trade Center in Manhattan and the Hancock Tower in Chicago.
The Epcot Center at Disney World.
The Renaissance Center in Detroit.
New York's Madison Square Garden.
Tishman interweaves the stories behind the construction of these and many other important buildings and projects with personal reminiscences of his dealings with Henry Ford, Jr., Disney's Michael Eisner, casino magnate Steve Wynn, and many others into a practical history of the field of Construction Management, which he pioneered.
This book will be of interest not only to a general public interested in the stories and personalities behind many of the most iconic construction projects of the post–World War II period in the United States but to students of engineering and architecture and members of the new field of Construction Management.
In this reflective autobiography, Rosemary Sassoon, a leading expert on handwriting and typography, looks back on her long and varied career, paying special attention to her unorthodox progression through a variety of fields. She details the route that took her from design to the educational and medical aspects of handwriting problems, then on to research and a PhD, and finally to working in the area of legibility in type design. In telling the story of an unusual and unusually successful life, Sassoon takes up a number of philosophical questions about what it is that comes together to form our characters, and what role chance and coincidence play in our lives.
Having a baby is surely one of the pinnacle events of a woman's life, full of joy, serenity, and contentment--or so society tells a new mother, who thus finds herself ill-prepared for the exhaustion, boredom, and isolation that can follow childbirth. The resulting depression--how it is experienced, and how it might be relieved--is the subject of Natasha Mauthner's insightful and compassionate book, which recounts the stories of new mothers caught between a cultural ideal and a far more complex reality.
In Mauthner's interviews with thirty-five new mothers in Britain and America, we see how women contend with images of motherhood as a state of bliss for everyone but themselves. The British women tend to view their depression as a personal failure of strength; American women, as a result of hormonal fluctuation. But all vividly describe a similar state of paralysis and loneliness, with alternating love, resentment, and guilt toward their babies.
Most usefully, these women reveal the positive impact that other new mothers had on their depression. Far more important than their own family's support or understanding, the sense of not being alone in their trials emerges as a key source of strength and healing for women struggling with postpartum depression.
As charismatic and gifted as he was volatile, Jimmy Martin recorded dozens of bluegrass classics and co-invented the high lonesome sound. Barbara Martin Stephens became involved with the King of Bluegrass at age seventeen. Don't Give your Heart to a Rambler tells the story of their often tumultuous life together.
Barbara bore his children and took on a crucial job as his booking agent when the agent he was using failed to obtain show dates for the group. Female booking agents were non-existent at that time but she persevered and went on to become the first female booking agent on Music Row. She also endured years of physical and emotional abuse at Martin's hands. With courage and candor, Barbara tells of the suffering and traces the hard-won personal growth she found inside motherhood and her work. Her vivid account of Martin's explosive personality and torment over his exclusion from the Grand Ole Opry fill in the missing details on a career renowned for being stormy. Barbara also shares her own journey, one of good humor and proud achievements, and filled with fond and funny recollections of the music legends and ordinary people she met, befriended, and represented along the way.
Straightforward and honest, Don't Give your Heart to a Rambler is a woman's story of the world of bluegrass and one of its most colorful, conflicted artists.
Much of Michael Oriard's education took place outside the schoolroom of his native Spokane, Washington, during "slaughter practices" on high school football fields. He was taught to "punish" and "dominate," to rouse his school spirit with religion, and to "tough it" through injuries, even serious ones. At the age of eighteen he entered Notre Dame and walked onto the football team, where studying hard was never harder. By his senior year, playing for Ara Parseghian's Fighting Irish, he was the starting center and co-captain of the team.
After graduating, he signed with the Kansas City Chiefs and head coach Hank Stram. There he learned what it meant to be "owned." He rediscovered the game as it was played by grown men with families who were still treated like children and who dreaded nothing more than the end of their football careers. And without their fully realizing the consequences, every hard tackle inflicted its injury, some gradually growing into chronic conditions, some suddenly cutting a player's career short and ushering him off the field to be soon forgotten.
In this thoughtful narrative, Oriard describes the dreams of glory, the game day anxieties, the brutal training camps and harsh practices, his starry-eyed experience at Notre Dame, and the cold-blooded business of professional football. Told from the inside, the book leaves aside the hype and the pathos of the game to present a direct and honest account of the personal rewards but also the costs players paid to make others rich and entertained.
Originally published in 1982, The End of Autumn recounts the experiences of an ordinary player in a bygone era--before ESPN, before the Bowl Championship Series, before free agency and million-dollar salaries for NFL players. In a new afterword, Oriard reflects on the process of writing the book and how the game has changed in the thirty years since his "retirement" from football at the age of twenty-six.
The noise gathered from a lifetime of engaging with war, race, religion, memory, illness, and family echoes through the vignettes, quotations, graffiti, and poetry that Donald Anderson musters here, fragments of the humor and horror of life, the absurdities that mock reason and the despair that yields laughter. Gathering Noise from My Life offers sonic shards of a tune at once jaunty and pessimistic, hopeful and hopeless, and a model for how we can make sense of the scraps of our lives. “We are where we’ve been and what we’ve read,” the author says, and gives us his youth in Montana, the family tradition of boxing, careers in writing and fighting, the words of Mike Tyson, Frederick the Great, Fran Lebowitz, and Shakespeare. In his camouflaged memoir, the award-winning short-story writer cobbles together the sources of the vision of life he has accrued as a consequence of his six decades of living and reading.
In an age when many of the major environmental policies established over the past four decades are under siege, Michael McCloskey reminds us of better days. . .days when conservation initiatives were seen not as political lightning rods, but as opportunities to cope with disturbing threats to the quality of our environment.
In 1961, a young let's-get-it-done McCloskey was hired as the Sierra Club's first field representative for the Northwest. From there, for nearly forty years, he rose to guide the oldest and most powerful environmental organization in the world. He helped to pave the way for the original Wilderness Act in 1964, and as the club's conservation director worked to see it implemented. He successfully lobbied for the creation of new national parks and wilderness areas, the North Cascades and Redwood National Park among them. As executive director, he was present at the creation of Earthday in 1970, directed lobbying for the enactment of over one hundred environmental laws, and watched Sierra Club membership rise from about 70,000 to more than 500,000. In the nineties, he led the Sierra Club in mounting fights against attempts to undercut EPA regulations and against trade agreements that curtailed environmental programs.
His tenure was no walk in the park or smooth glide across a placid mountain lake. The large and very public Sierra Club was fraught with brush fires, seismic tremors, and pitched battles, both within and without. He survived the ouster of his mentor, the charismatic but controversial David Brower, succeeding him as the second executive director in the club's history, and put the Sierra Club back on firm financial footing. Under less than ideal political circumstances, McCloskey helped to keep the environmental agenda moving steadily forward, even in the face of Ronald Reagan's virulently pro-development Interior Secretary James Watt (whom he was instrumental in expelling from office).
In the Thick of It describes not only McCloskey's life as an environmental activist; it reveals the inner workings and politics of one of the nation's most influential environmental nonprofit organizations during an era of ground-breaking environmental legislation. In addition to sharing the details of battles exhilaratingly won and disappointingly lost on the environmental front, he demonstrates how it is indeed possible to turn idealism and hope into practical action that can make an impact at the national level. With this book McCloskey offers not only invaluable insight into the past, but also inspiration to carry into the future.
Milwaukee-native Chris Multerer wrestled for more than a decade, starting in 1978, on professional circuits around the United States. As a “job man,” Multerer made the superstars of wrestling, such as Mad Dog Vachon and Hulk Hogan, shine. In cities around the country, thousands of screaming fans cheered when their favorite wrestlers pinned and punished Multerer in a variety of painful ways.
In Job Man, Multerer, along with his friend Larry Widen, shows what life was like for wrestlers outside the spotlight. Long nights on the road, thoughtful takes on some the biggest personalities in the business, and, perhaps most of all, a love for the sport, are as much a part of Multerer’s revealing and remarkable story as his time in the ring.
The Colombian activist Juan Gregorio Palechor (1923–1992) dedicated his life to championing indigenous rights in Cauca, a department in the southwest of Colombia, where he helped found the Regional Indigenous Council of Cauca. Recounting his life story in collaboration with the Colombian anthropologist Myriam Jimeno, Palechor traces his political awakening, his experiences in national politics, the disillusionment that resulted, and his turn to a more radical activism aimed at confronting ethnic discrimination and fighting for indigenous territorial and political sovereignty.
Palechor's lively memoir is complemented by Jimeno's reflections on autobiography as an anthropological tool and on the oppressive social and political conditions faced by Colombia's indigenous peoples. A faithful and fluent transcription of Palechor's life story, this work is a uniquely valuable resource for understanding the contemporary indigenous rights movements in Colombia.
Lalo: My Life and Music
Lalo Guerrero and Sherilyn Meece Mentes University of Arizona Press, 2002 Library of Congress ML420.G88A3 2002 | Dewey Decimal 782.42164092
He has been called "the father of Chicano music" and "the original Chicano hepcat." A modest man in awe of his own celebrity, he has sung of the joys and sorrows, dreams and frustrations of the Mexican American community over a sixty-year career. Lalo Guerrero is an American original, and his music jubilantly reflects the history of Chicano popular culture and music.
Lalo's autobiography takes readers on a musical rollercoaster, from his earliest enjoyment of Latino and black sounds in Tucson to his burgeoning career in Los Angeles singing with Los Carlistas, the quartet with which he began his recording career in 1938. During the fifties and sixties his music dominated the Latin American charts in both North and South America, and his song "Canción Mexicana" has become the unofficial anthem of Mexico. Through the years, Lalo mastered boleros, rancheras, salsas, mambos, cha-chas, and swing; he performed protest songs, children's music, and corridos that told of his people's struggles. Riding the crest of changing styles, he wrote pachuco boogies in one period and penned clever Spanish parodies of American hit songs in another. For all of these contributions to American music, Lalo was awarded a National Medal of the Arts from President Clinton.
Lalo's story is also the story of his times. We meet his family and earliest musical associates—including his long relationship with Manuel Acuña, who first got Lalo into the recording studio—and the many performers he counted as friends, from Frank Sinatra to Los Lobos. We relive the spirit of the nightclubs where he was a headliner and the one-night stands he performed all over the Southwest. We also discover what life was like in old Tucson and in mid-century L.A. as seen through the eyes of this uniquely creative artist. "In 1958," Guerrero recalls, "I wrote a song about a Martian who came to Earth to clear up certain misunderstandings about Mars. Now I have decided that it is time to set some things straight about Lalo Guerrero." Lalo does just that, in an often funny, sometimes sentimental story that traces the musical genius of a man whose talent has taken him all over the world, but who still believes in giving back to the community. His story is a gift to that community.
The book also features a detailed discography, compiled by Lalo's son Mark, tracing his recorded output from the days of 78s to his most recent CDs.
Live Nude Girl: My Life as an Object is a lively meditation on the profession of art modeling as it has been practiced in history and as it is practiced today. Kathleen Rooney draws on her own experiences working as an artist's model, as well as the famous, notorious, and mysterious artists and models through the ages. Through a combination of personal perspective, historical anecdote, and witty prose, Live Nude Girl reveals that both the appeal of posing nude for artists and the appeal of drawing the naked figure lie in our deeply human responses to beauty, sex, love, and death.
Entering the academy at the dawn of the women’s rights movement in the late 1960s and early 1970s, the first generation of feminist academics had a difficult journey. With few female role models, they had to forge their own path and prove that feminist scholarship was a legitimate enterprise. Later, when many of these scholars moved into administrative positions, hoping to reform the university system from within, they encountered entrenched hierarchies, bureaucracies, and old boys’ networks that made it difficult to put their feminist principles into practice.
In this compelling memoir, Mary Kay Thompson Tetreault describes how a Catholic girl from small-town Nebraska discovered her callings as a feminist, as an academic, and as a university administrator. She recounts her experiences at three very different schools: the small progressive Lewis & Clark College, the massive regional university of Cal State Fullerton, and the rapidly expanding Portland State University. Reflecting on both her accomplishments and challenges, she considers just how much second-wave feminism has transformed academia and how much reform is still needed.
With remarkable candor and compassion, Thompson Tetreault provides an intimate personal look at an era when both women’s lives and university culture changed for good.
And so, a new chapter in the life of Richard J. Codey, an undertaker's son born and bred in the Garden State, began on the night of August 12, 2004--he knew from that point his life would never be the same . . . and it hasn't been. His memoir is a breezy, humorous, perceptive, and candid chronicle of local and state government from a man who lived among political movers and shakers for more than three decades. Codey became governor of New Jersey, succeeding James McGreevey, who resigned following a homosexual affair--a shattering scandal and set of circumstances that were bizarre, even for the home state of the Sopranos. At once a political autobiography, filled with lively, incisive anecdotes that record how Codey restored respectability and set a record for good politics and good government in a state so often tarnished, this is also the story about a man and his family.
Jeannie Cheatham is a living legend in jazz and blues. A pianist, singer, songwriter, and co-leader of the Sweet Baby Blues Band, she has played and sung with many of the greats in blues and jazz—T-Bone Walker, Dinah Washington, Cab Callaway, Joe Williams, Al Hibbler, Odetta, and Jimmy Witherspoon. Cheatham toured with Big Mama Thornton off and on for ten years and was featured with Thornton and Sippie Wallace in the award-winning PBS documentary Three Generations of the Blues. Her music, which has garnered national and international acclaim, has been described as unrestrained, exuberant, soulful, rollicking, wicked, virtuous, wild, and truthful. Cheatham's signature song, "Meet Me with Your Black Drawers On" is a staple in jazz and blues clubs across America and in Europe, Africa, and Japan.
In this delightfully frank autobiography, Jeannie Cheatham recalls a life that has been as exuberant, virtuous, wild, and truthful as her music. She begins in Akron, Ohio, where she grew up in a vibrant multiethnic neighborhood surrounded by a family of strong women. From those roots, she launched a musical career that took her from the Midwest to California, doing time along the way everywhere from a jail cell in Dayton, Ohio, where she was innocently caught in a police raid, to the University of Wisconsin-Madison—where she and Jimmy Cheatham taught music. Cheatham writes of a life spent fighting racism and sexism, of rage and resolve, misery and miracles, betrayals and triumphs, of faith almost lost in dark places, but mysteriously regained in a flash of light. Cheatham's autobiography is also the story of her fifty-years-and-counting love affair and musical collaboration with her husband and band partner, Jimmy Cheatham.
Richard W. Bulliet is an innovative historian of the Islamic world. His contributions have changed the way scholars think about the history of medieval city life, animal domestication, wheeled transport, religious conversion, Islamic institutions, and relations between Islam and Christianity. His fifty-year career at Harvard, Berkeley, and Columbia coincided with the rise of Middle East Studies as an American academic enterprise and with his Columbia colleague Edward Said’s book Orientalism, which set off a lasting debate over the value of Americans’ and Europeans’ studying non-Western cultures. In Methodists and Muslims, Bulliet has fashioned a critique of both Orientalism and Middle East Studies. His memoir also recounts how a young Methodist from Illinois made his way into the then-arcane field of Islamic Studies, became involved in shaping Middle East Studies, and developed relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran, culminating in the controversial visit to New York City by President Ahmadinejad of Iran.
My Life as a Filmmaker
Yamamoto Satsuo; Translated, Annotated, and with an Introduction by Chia-ning Chang University of Michigan Press, 2017 Library of Congress PN1998.3.Y36A3 2017 | Dewey Decimal 791.430233092
In his posthumous autobiography, Watakushi no eiga jinsei (1984), Yamamoto reflects on his career and legacy: beginning in the prewar days as an assistant director in a well-established film company under the master Naruse Mikio, to his wide-ranging experiences as a filmmaker, including his participation in the tumultuous Toho Labor Upheaval soon after Japan’s defeat in World War II and his struggles as an independent filmmaker in the 1950s and 1960s before returning to work within the mainstream industry. In the process, he established himself as one of the most prominent and socially engaged film artists in postwar Japan. Imbued with vibrant social realism and astute political commentary, his filmic genres ranged widely from melodramas, period films from the Tokugawa era, samurai action jidaigeki, social satires, and antiwar films. Providing serious insights into and trenchant critique of the moral corruption in Japanese politics, academe, industry, and society, Yamamoto at the same time produced highly successful films that offered drama and entertainment for Japanese and international moviegoers. His considerable artistic distinction, strong social and political consciousness, and filmic versatility have earned him a unique and distinguished position among Japan’s world-class film directors.
In addition to detailed annotations of the autobiography, translator Chia-ning Chang offers a comprehensive introduction to the career and the significance of Yamamoto and his works in the context of Japanese film history. It contextualizes Yamamoto’s life and works in the historical and cultural zeitgeist of prewar, wartime, and postwar Japan before scrutinizing the unique qualities of his narrative voice and social conscience as a film artist.
"Ever since the creators of the animated television show South Park turned their lovingly sardonic gaze on the massively multiplayer online game World of Warcraft for an entire episode, WoW's status as an icon of digital culture has been secure. My Life as a Night Elf Priest digs deep beneath the surface of that icon to explore the rich particulars of the World of Warcraft player's experience."
—Julian Dibbell, Wired
"World of Warcraft is the best representative of a significant new technology, art form, and sector of society: the theme-oriented virtual world. Bonnie Nardi's pioneering transnational ethnography explores this game both sensitively and systematically using the methods of cultural anthropology and aesthetics with intensive personal experience as a guild member, media teacher, and magical quest Elf."
—William Sims Bainbridge, author of The Warcraft Civilization and editor of Online Worlds
“Nardi skillfully covers all of the hot button issues that come to mind when people think of video games like World of Warcraft such as game addiction, sexism, and violence. What gives this book its value are its unexpected gems of rare and beautifully detailed research on less sensationalized topics of interest such as the World of Warcraft player community in China, game modding, the increasingly blurred line between play and work, and the rich and fascinating lives of players and player cultures. Nardi brings World of Warcraft down to earth for non-players and ties it to social and cultural theory for scholars. . . . the best ethnography of a single virtual world produced so far.”
—Lisa Nakamura, University of Illinois
World of Warcraft rapidly became one of the most popular online world games on the planet, amassing 11.5 million subscribers—officially making it an online community of gamers that had more inhabitants than the state of Ohio and was almost twice as populous as Scotland. It's a massively multiplayer online game, or MMO in gamer jargon, where each person controls a single character inside a virtual world, interacting with other people's characters and computer-controlled monsters, quest-givers, and merchants.
In My Life as a Night Elf Priest, Bonnie Nardi, a well-known ethnographer who has published extensively on how theories of what we do intersect with how we adopt and use technology, compiles more than three years of participatory research in Warcraft play and culture in the United States and China into this field study of player behavior and activity. She introduces us to her research strategy and the history, structure, and culture of Warcraft; argues for applying activity theory and theories of aesthetic experience to the study of gaming and play; and educates us on issues of gender, culture, and addiction as part of the play experience. Nardi paints a compelling portrait of what drives online gamers both in this country and in China, where she spent a month studying players in Internet cafes.
Bonnie Nardi has given us a fresh look not only at World of Warcraft but at the field of game studies as a whole. One of the first in-depth studies of a game that has become an icon of digital culture, My Life as a Night Elf Priest will capture the interest of both the gamer and the ethnographer.
Bonnie A. Nardi is an anthropologist by training and a professor in the Department of Informatics in the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences at the University of California, Irvine. Her research focus is the social implications of digital technologies. She is the author of A Small Matter of Programming: Perspectives on End User Computing and the coauthor of Information Ecologies: Using Technology with Heart and Acting with Technology: Activity Theory and Interaction Design.
In My Life as a Colombian Revolutionary, María Eugenia Vásquez Perdomo presents a gripping account of her experiences as a member of M-19, one of the most successful guerrilla movements in Colombia's tumultuous modern history. Vásquez's remarkable story opens with her happy childhood in a middle-class provincial household in which she was encouraged to be adventurous and inquisitive. As an eighteen-year-old university student in Bogotá, María Eugenia embraced radical politics and committed herself to militant action to rid her country of an abusive government. Dedicated and daring, Vásquez took part in some of the M-19's boldest operations in the 1970s and 1980s and became one of its leaders. She was able to avoid detection for nearly twenty years in the movement because she was both clever and considered too attractive to be a guerrillera. Her vivid narrative brings to life the men and women who were her comrades and conveys their anxiety and exhilaration as they carried out their actions. When she tells of her love affairs with some of M-19's top leaders, she cannot separate romance from camaraderie or escape a sense of impending tragedy. If Vásquez gave us only a rare insider's account of youth culture and a guerrilla movement in a Latin American country, this would be a book well worth reading. But she also gives us an unsparing analysis of what it meant to be a woman in the movement and how much her commitment to radical politics cost her.
As Katherine Verdery observes, "There's nothing like reading your secret police file to make you wonder who you really are." In 1973 Verdery began her doctoral fieldwork in the Transylvanian region of Romania, ruled at the time by communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. She returned several times over the next twenty-five years, during which time the secret police—the Securitate—compiled a massive surveillance file on her. Reading through its 2,781 pages, she learned that she was "actually" a spy, a CIA agent, a Hungarian agitator, and a friend of dissidents: in short, an enemy of Romania. In My Life as a Spy she analyzes her file alongside her original field notes and conversations with Securitate officers. Verdery also talks with some of the informers who were close friends, learning the complex circumstances that led them to report on her, and considers how fieldwork and spying can be easily confused. Part memoir, part detective story, part anthropological analysis, My Life as a Spy offers a personal account of how government surveillance worked during the Cold War and how Verdery experienced living under it.
A woman meets a man and falls in love. She is sixty, a writer and lifelong New Yorker raised by garmentos. She thought this kind of thing wouldn’t happen again. He is English, so who knows what he thinks. He is fifty-six, a professor now living in Arizona, the son of a bespoke tailor. As the first of Laurie Stone’s linked stories begins, the writer contemplates what life would be like in the desert with the professor. As we learn how she became the person she is, we also come to know the artists and politics of the downtown scene of the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s, a cultural milieu that remains alive in her. In sharply etched prose, Stone presents a woman constantly seduced by strangers, language, the streets— even a wildlife trail. Her characters realize that they feel at home in dislocation—in always living in two places at the same time: east and west, past and present, the bed and the grave (or copper urn). Love may not last, the writer knows. Then again, when has anything you thought about the future turned out right?
Louis Kenoyer, born in 1868 at Grand Ronde reservation, Oregon, was the last known native speaker of Tualatin Northern Kalapuya. His autobiographical narrative was recorded in 1928 and 1936 and is archived in the Special Collections of the University of Washington Library. Kenoyer's autobiography is a rare, first-person narrative by a Native American discussing life on an Oregon reservation. To bring his compelling story to contemporary readers, Henry Zenk and Jedd Schrock have completed a translation of the original Tualatin narrative and prepared extensive annotations and commentary to supplement the text. The original Tualatin is presented alongside the English translation.
This is the inside story of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), from its beginnings in 1964 to the signing of the Oslo agreement in 1993.
For over three decades, the main goal of the PLO was to achieve a just peace in the Arab-Israeli conflict, and to build a democratic state in Palestine for all its citizens. Shafiq Al-Hout, a high ranking PLO official until his resignation in 1993, provides previously unavailable details on the key events in its history such as its recognition by the UN and the Oslo peace negotiations. Taking us right to the heart of the decision making processes, this book explains the personalities and internal politics that shaped the PLO's actions and the Palestinian experience of the twentieth century.
Although he was an insider, Al-Hout's book does not shy from analysing and criticising decisions and individuals, including Yasser Arafat. This book is an essential piece of history that sheds new light on the significance of the PLO in the Palestinian struggle for justice.
Ed Lowry joined the vaudeville circuit in 1910 at the age of fourteen. He never achieved stardom equal to the likes of Fred Allen, Jack Benny, George Burns, Buster Keaton, or Eddie Cantor, and he never considered himself an “artiste.” Instead, he saw himself as a hoofer and comic simply trying to make a living on the vaude scene. My Life in Vaudeville recounts Lowry’s long career in entertainment from the viewpoint of a foot soldier with a big dream.
Lowry’s story begins in the heyday of vaudeville in the early twentieth century and follows its gradual decline. Unlike many of his associates, he recognized that movies and other forms of entertainment were the future, and thus branched out into other venues. He took gigs in radio in Philadelphia, Newark, New York, and Los Angeles; explored revues, cabarets, burlesque, and film; and organized USO road shows. With wit and perception, he reveals his stage roots as an entertainer playing to his audience, and editor Paul M. Levitt’s introduction beautifully sets the stage for Lowry’s gags-to-riches tale, providing much-needed historical perspective.
My Life in Vaudeville is an unpretentious record of a time when thousands of young people went into show business to escape the boredom of daily life, and Lowry’s story is a view of vaudeville not often encountered. Lowry does much more than recall the daily life of a working actor, musician, and comedian. His story brings vaudeville to life and places it within the larger narratives of popular culture and popular entertainment of the twentieth century.
Content Notice: ableism, mental illness, and talk of suicide
Paul W. Ogden has dedicated his life to educating young deaf and hard of hearing people and raising awareness of what it means to be deaf in a hearing world. He has taught and mentored a generation of teachers, and his classic volume, The Silent Garden, has served as a guide for parents and educators for over thirty years. Now he tells his personal story of challenges faced and lessons learned, revealing that the critical, guiding factors for him have always been language and successful communication.
Born in a time when many deaf children had no access to language, Paul learned spoken and written language skills at a young age through the painstaking efforts of his mother. His tight-knit family, which included one deaf and two hearing older brothers, facilitated open and constant communication using a variety of methods. His father was a pastor who was involved in the civil rights movement. He struggled with depression, an illness that would take the life of one of Paul’s brothers. As a student at a residential deaf school where the use of American Sign Language (ASL) was suppressed, Paul continued to build on the speech and lipreading skills he had learned at home. He returned home for high school and graduated as co-valedictorian—unaware of the standing ovation he received as he walked to the podium.
Following a rewarding experience as an undergraduate at Antioch College, Paul went on to earn a PhD from the University of Illinois, a rare accomplishment for a deaf person at that time. During his graduate studies, he finally had the opportunity to learn ASL. As an award-winning professor of Deaf Studies at California State University, Fresno, he successfully petitioned for the university to recognize ASL as a language, and he established the Silent Garden program, which has grown into a flourishing provider of training and resources to support the Deaf community. In My Life of Language, Paul offers eloquent reflections on both the joyful and difficult periods of his life as he navigated relationships, faced discrimination, questioned his faith, and found great happiness in his marriage.
In 1917, Gilbert Gould achieved his dream to be an engineer, and began running engines for the Denver & Rio Grande and later for the Utah Railway. He was a natural storyteller, and his recollections are entertaining and historically rewarding.
Doris Herrmann was born deaf in 1933 in Basel, Switzerland, and from the age of three, she possessed a mystical attraction to kangaroos. She recalls seeing them at that age for the first time at the Basel Zoo, and spending every spare moment visiting them from then on. Eventually, her fascination grew into passionate study of their behavior. Her dedication caught the attention of the zookeepers who provided her greater access to these extraordinary animals. Despite her challenges with communication, Herrmann wrote a scientific paper about the kangaroo’s pouch hygiene when raising a joey. Soon, experts from around the world came to visit this precocious deaf girl who knew about kangaroos.
Herrmann appreciated the opportunities opening up to her, but her real dream was to travel to Australia to study kangaroos in the wild. For years she worked and yearned, until Dr. Karl H. Winkelsträter a renowned authority on kangaroos, suggested an independent study in Australia at a place called Pebbly Beach. In 1969, at the age of 35, Herrmann finally traveled to the native land of kangaroos. During the next four decades, she would make many more trips to observe and write about kangaroos.
My Life with Kangaroos explores every facet of Herrmann’s connection to these engaging marsupials. Her single-minded devotion not only made her a leading self-made scholar on kangaroos, it transformed her own personality and her relationships with others. As she forged bonds with kangaroos named Dora, Jacqueline, Manuela, and many others, she engendered great affection and respect in the people around her, truly a remarkable story of success.
As its title implies, this book reflects in varying ways the experiences and attitudes of one who came of age in the first half of that now mythical decade, the 1960s. In an unusual combination of history, criticism, and autobiography, one of our best literary and cultural critics explores life and death in the late twentieth century and some of the older worlds that made American culture what it is today.
Sixties survivors, as Christopher Clausen points out, do not necessarily hold more beliefs or tastes in common than any other group. Nevertheless they may be more likely than most people born earlier or later to consider the relations between public and private life—the political and the personal—a problem, sometimes even an unresolvable problem. While this is not primarily a book about the 1960s, most of it occupies the noisy crossroads where public worlds intersect the private, mysterious lives of individuals and families, where ordinary people pursue their own destinies and desires while submitting consciously or unconsciously to the pressures of the public sphere—a set of demands or aspirations common to people in a particular time and place.
In modern America, where most of these essays are set, any individual is likely to live in several worlds at any given moment, as well as to pass through several more over a lifetime. Because of rapid transitions in public life and culture while they were still at an impressionable age, members of the “Kennedy generation” became almost morbidly conscious of the persistence of the past in the present. The often unpredictable effect on individual lives of historical forces is the main subject of Clausen's fascinating account.
Ever wonder what it’s like to interview famous athletes and coaches? For twenty years, sportscaster Jessie Garcia has done just that. In My Life with the Green & Gold she brings fans to the sidelines at Lambeau Field, inside the locker room, aboard the Packers bus, and into the host’s chair at The Mike McCarthy Show.
A self-proclaimed “terrible athlete” born without sports in her blood, Garcia reported on Wisconsin’s beloved Green Bay Packers during the Holmgren, Rhodes, Sherman, and McCarthy years. She’s been a Packers sideline reporter for preseason games and covered the team during their Super Bowl showdowns against the Patriots, Broncos, and Steelers. She’s traveled with the team to Tokyo and the White House and to schools and retirement homes, where the gridiron heroes interacted with their fans. She’s visited the hometowns of players and coaches, she’s met their proud parents and their pets, she’s interviewed the team trainer about their strength exercises. My Life with the Green & Gold also features up-close and personal stories about other teams and athletes she’s covered, from the Badgers and Brewers to Wisconsin Olympians such as Bonnie Blair and Casey FitzRandolph.
Garcia’s expertise is capturing behind-the-scenes, human-interest stories. In My Life with the Green & Gold, she shares a personal and humorous insider’s look at many Wisconsin sports heroes from the perspective of a female sports journalist who has ridden the adrenaline rush to be on the air at 5:00 a.m., 10:00 p.m., and any hour in between, while also juggling the many demands of family life. Not many parents can say they’ve changed their child’s diaper in the tunnel at Lambeau, but Jessie Garcia can.
Unconventional and provocative, My Life with Things is Elizabeth Chin's meditation on her relationship with consumer goods and a critical statement on the politics and method of anthropology. Chin centers the book on diary entries that focus on everyday items—kitchen cabinet knobs, shoes, a piano—and uses them to intimately examine the ways consumption resonates with personal and social meaning: from writing love haikus about her favorite nail polish and discussing the racial implications of her tooth cap, to revealing how she used shopping to cope with a miscarriage and contemplating how her young daughter came to think that she needed Lunesta. Throughout, Chin keeps Karl Marx and his family's relationship to their possessions in mind, drawing parallels between Marx's napkins, the production of late nineteenth-century table linens, and Chin's own vintage linen collection. Unflinchingly and refreshingly honest, Chin unlocks the complexities of her attachments to, reliance on, and complicated relationships with her things. In so doing, she prompts readers to reconsider their own consumption, as well as their assumptions about the possibilities for creative scholarship.
An American reporter of Russian heritage assigned to Soviet-era Moscow might seem to have an edge on his colleagues, but when he’s falsely accused of spying, any advantage quickly evaporates. . . . .
As a young UPI correspondent in Moscow during the early 1960s, Nicholas Daniloff hoped to jump-start his career in his father’s homeland, but he soon learned that the Cold War had its own rules of engagement. In this riveting memoir, he describes the reality of journalism behind the Iron Curtain: how Western reporters banded together to thwart Soviet propagandists, how their “official sources” were almost always controlled by the KGB—and how those sources would sometimes try to turn newsmen into collaborators.
Leaving Moscow for Washington in 1965, Daniloff honed his skills at the State Department, then returned to Moscow in 1981 to find a more open society. But when the FBI nabbed a Soviet agent in 1986, Daniloff was arrested in retaliation and thrown into prison as a spy—an incident that threatened to undo the Reykjavik summit until top aides to Reagan and Gorbachev worked out a solution.
In addition to recounting a career in the thick of international intrigue, Of Spies and Spokesmen is brimming with inside information about historic events. Daniloff tells how the news media played a crucial role in resolving the Cuban Missile Crisis, recalls the emotional impact of the JFK assassination on Soviet leadership, and describes the behind-the-scenes struggles that catapulted Mikhail Gorbachev to power. He even shares facts not told to the public: how the SAC would warn Moscow that its submarines were too close to American shores, why the Soviets shot down the KAL airliner without visual identification, and how American reporters in Moscow sometimes did dangerous favors for our government that could easily have been mistaken for espionage.
Daniloff sheds light not only on prominent figures such as Nikita Khrushchev and Henry Kissinger but also on suspected spies Frederick Barghoorn, John Downey, and ABC correspondent Sam Jaffe—unfairly branded a Soviet agent by the FBI. In addition, he assesses the performance of Henry Shapiro, dean of American journalists in Moscow, whose forty years in the adversary’s capital often provoke questions about his role and reputation.
In describing how the Western press functioned in the old Soviet Union—and how it still functions in Washington today—Daniloff shows that the Soviet Russia he came to know was far more complex than the “evil empire” painted by Ronald Reagan: a web of propaganda and manipulation, to be sure, but also a place of hospitality and friendship. And with Russia still finding its way toward a new social and political order, he reminds us that seventy years of Communist rule left a deep impression on its national psyche. As readable as it is eye-opening, Of Spies and Spokesmenprovides a new look at that country’s heritage—and at the practice of journalism in times of crisis.
In his engaging memoirs, One Version of the Facts: My Life in the Ivory Tower, Dr. Henry Duckworth takes readers from his student days in Winnipeg and Chicago in the 1930s to his time as president of the University of Winnipeg (1971-1981) and chancellor of the University of Manitoba. An accomplished physicist, he wrote the first definitive text in English on mass spectroscopy, discovered the last stable isotope (platinum), and helped create important programs at universities and at the National Research Council. He also served on numerous councils for scientific and university organizations, and rubbed shoulders with Nobel Prize winners at international conferences.With humour and modesty, Henry Duckworth recalls trends, changes, and crises he witnessed throughout his long university career. He offers his observations, his opinions, his "version of the facts," providing a special insight into critical years in Canada's university education history, as well as his own specialty, atomic research.
As a member of Poster Children, Rose Marshack took part in entwined revolutions. Marshack and other women seized a much-elevated profile in music during the indie rock breakthrough while the advent of new digital technologies transformed the recording and marketing of music. Touring in a van, meeting your idols, juggling a programming job with music, keeping control and credibility, the perils of an independent record label (and the greater perils of a major)—Marshack chronicles the band’s day-to-day life and punctuates her account with excerpts from her tour reports and hard-learned lessons on how to rock, program, and teach while female. She also details the ways Poster Children applied punk’s DIY ethos to digital tech as a way to connect with fans via then-new media like pkids listservs, internet radio, and enhanced CDs.
An inside look at a scene and a career, Play Like a Man is the evocative and humorous tale of one woman’s life in the trenches and online.
Hard of hearing since early childhood, John Christiansen spent the first 30 years of his life trying to fit in to a hearing world that did little to accommodate his communication needs. Although he excelled in academics, Christiansen found social situations stressful at every level, until he obtained a position as a professor of sociology at Gallaudet University. There he learned sign language and joined a new community. Reflections: My Life in the Deaf and Hearing Worlds grew out of his personal experiences inhabiting these two worlds.
As a sociologist, Christiansen could identify the toll that trying to communicate with hearing people took on his psyche, the classic looking-glass self in action: I am what I think you think I am. He saw that people with hearing loss frequently blame themselves for social awkwardness and gaffs, even though the responsibility for clear communication should be shared. Still, after living in the hearing world for most of his life, he opted to undergo a cochlear implantation to try to improve interaction with his hearing friends, wife, and children.
His description of adjusting to his cochlear implant brings fresh reality to the implant process. As he puts it, he was not a superstar. After ten years, though, he feels positive enough about his experience to endorse it. As a denouement to his affecting memoir, he describes the disruptive 2006 protest at Gallaudet over the choice of a new president from his vantage point as a member of the search committee. Reflections stands as a remarkable account of one person’s navigation through the intricacies of two different and occasionally opposing worlds.
Marina Goldovskaya is one of Russia’s best-known documentary filmmakers. The first woman in Russia (and possibly the world) to combine being a director, writer, cinematographer, and producer, Goldovskaya has made over thirty documentary films and more than one hundred programs for Russian, European, Japanese, and American television. Her work, which includes the award-winning films The House on Arbat Street, The Shattered Mirror, and Solovky Power, has garnered international acclaim and won virtually every prize given for documentary filmmaking. In Woman with a Movie Camera, Goldovskaya turns her lens on her own life and work, telling an adventurous, occasionally harrowing story of growing up in the Stalinist era and subsequently documenting Russian society from the 1960s, through the Thaw and Perestroika, to post-Soviet Russia. She recalls her childhood in a Moscow apartment building that housed famous filmmakers, being one of only three women students at the State Film School, and working as an assistant cameraperson on the first film of Andrei Tarkovsky, Russia’s most celebrated director. Reviewing her professional filmmaking career, which began in the 1960s, Goldovskaya reveals her passion for creating films that presented a truthful picture of Soviet life, as well as the challenges of working within (and sometimes subverting) the bureaucracies that controlled Russian film and television production and distribution. Along the way, she describes a host of notable figures in Russian film, theater, art, and politics, as well as the technological evolution of filmmaking from film to video to digital media. A compelling portrait of a woman who broke gender and political barriers, as well as the eventful four decades of Russian history she has documented, Woman with a Movie Camera will be fascinating reading for a wide audience.