Marilène Phipps-Kettlewell’s award-winning stories transport you to Haiti—to a lush, lyrical, flamboyant, and spirit-filled Haiti where palm trees shine wet with moonlight and the sky paints a yellow screen over your head and the ocean sparkles with thousands of golden eyes—and keep you there forever. Her singular characters mysteriously address the deeper meanings of human existence. They also dream of escape, whether from themselves, from family, from Vodou, from financial and cultural difficulties and the politicians that create them, or from the country itself, but Haiti will forever remain part of their souls and part of the thoughts of her readers.
Some characters do achieve escape through the mind or through sea voyage—escape found by surrendering to spectacular fantasies and madness and love, bargaining with God, joining the boat people. Marie-Ange Saint-Jacques’s mother sacrifices everything to ensure her daughter’s survival on a perilous boat trip, Angelina waits to fly away to Nou Yòk, Vivi creates her own circus with dozens of rescued dogs, Gustave dies a martyr to his faith. Throughout, the “I” who moves in and out of these dream-filled stories embraces the heavenly mysteries found in “the room where all things lost are stored with grace.”
We begin our journey to Haiti with images of a little girl in a pink bedroom reading by candlelight a book about the life of Saint Bernadette, surrounded by the bewitching scents, sounds, and textures of a Caribbean night. Each story stands by itself, but some characters can be followed from one story to another through the transformations they undergo as a result of their life experiences. In this way, the collection can be read as one story, the story of a family trapped in a personal and cultural drama and the story of the people with whom the family interacts, themselves burdened by the need to survive within Haiti’s rigorously class-determined society and blessed by their relationship to the company of heaven in which they live and for which they are destined.
After the 1925 discovery of diamonds in the semi-desert of the northwest coast of South Africa, De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd. virtually proclaimed its dominion over the whole region. In the town of Kleinzee, the company owns all the real estate and infrastructure, and controls and administers both the town and the industry.
Peter Carstens’s In the Company of Diamonds draws a stark and startling portrait of this closed community, one that analyzes the power and hegemonic techniques used to acquire that power and maintain it.
As a prototypical company town, Kleinzee is subordinated to the industry and will of the owners. Employees and workers are variously differentiated and ordered according to occupation, ethnic variation, and other social criteria, a pattern reflected most markedly in the allocation of housing. Managers live in large, ranch-style houses, while contract workers are lodged in single-sex compounds.
As a community type, company towns like Kleinzee are not entirely unique, and Professor Carstens successfully draws a number of structural parallels with other closed and incomplete social formations such as Indian reservations, military bases, colleges, prisons, and mental hospitals.
Pierpont Stackpole was a Boston lawyer who in January 1918 became aide to Lieutenant General Hunter Liggett, soon to be commander of the first American corps in France. Stackpole’s diary, published here for the first time, is a major eyewitness account of the American Expeditionary Forces’ experience on the Western Front, offering an insider’s view into the workings of Liggett’s commands, his day-to-day business, and how he orchestrated his commands in trying and confusing situations.
Hunter Liggett did not fit John J. Pershing’s concept of the trim and energetic officer, but Pershing entrusted to him a corps and then an army command. Liggett assumed leadership of the U.S. First Army in mid-October of 1918, and after reorganizing, reinforcing, and resting, the battle-weary troops broke through the German lines in a fourth attack at the Meuse-Argonne—accomplishing what Pershing had failed to do in three previous attempts. The victory paved the way to armistice on November 11.
Liggett has long been a shadowy figure in the development of the American high command. He was “Old Army,” a veteran of Indian wars who nevertheless kept abreast of changes in warfare and more than other American officers was ready for the novelties of 1914–1918. Because few of his papers have survived, the diary of his aide—who rode in the general’s staff car as Liggett unburdened himself about fellow generals and their sometimes abysmal tactical notions—provides especially valuable insights into command within the AEF.
Stackpole’s diary also sheds light on other figures of the war, presenting a different view of the controversial Major General Clarence Edwards than has recently been recorded and relating the general staff’s attitudes about the flamboyant aviation figure Billy Mitchell. General Liggett built the American army in France, and the best measure of his achievement is this diary of his aide. That record stands here as a fascinating and authentic look at the Great War.
The son of a Black mother and white father overcomes family trauma to find the courage of compassion in veterinary practice
Rising to accept a prestigious award, Jody Lulich wondered what to say. Explain how he’d been attracted to veterinary medicine? Describe how caring for helpless, voiceless animals in his own shame and pain provided a lifeline, a chance to heal himself as well? Lulich tells his story in In the Company of Grace, a memoir about finding courage in compassion and strength in healing—and power in finally confronting the darkness of his youth.
Lulich’s white father and Black mother met at a civil rights rally, but love was no defense against their personal demons. His mother’s suicide, in his presence when he was nine years old, and his sometimes brutal father’s subsequent withdrawal set Lulich on a course from the South Side of Chicago to the Tuskegee School of Veterinary Medicine in Alabama to an endowed chair at the University of Minnesota, forever searching for the approval and affection that success could not deliver. Though shadowed by troubling secrets, his memoir also features scenes of surprising light and promise—of the neighbors who take him in, a brother’s unlikely effort to save Christmas, his mother’s memories of the family’s charmed early days, bright moments (and many curious details) of veterinary practice. Most consequentially, at Tuskegee Lulich rents a room in the home of a seventy-five-year-old Black woman named Grace, whose wholehearted adoption of him—and her own stories of the Jim Crow era—finally gives him a sense of belonging and possibility.
Completing his book amid the furor over George Floyd’s murder, Lulich reflects on all the ways that race has shaped his life. In the Company of Grace is a moving testament to the power of compassion in the face of seemingly overwhelming circumstances.
Recovering the bold voices and audacious lives of women who confronted capitalist society’s failures and injustices in the 1930s—a decade unnervingly similar to our own
In the Company of Radical Women Writers rediscovers the political commitments and passionate advocacy of seven writers—Black, Jewish, and white—who as young women turned to communism around the Great Depression and, over decades of national crisis, spoke to issues of labor, land, and love in ways that provide urgent, thought-provoking guidance for today. Rosemary Hennessy spotlights the courageous lives of women who confronted similar challenges to those we still face: exhausting and unfair labor practices, unrelenting racial injustice, and environmental devastation.
As Hennessy brilliantly shows, the documentary journalism and creative and biographical writings of Marvel Cooke, Louise Thompson Patterson, Claudia Jones, Alice Childress, Josephine Herbst, Meridel Le Sueur, and Muriel Rukeyser recognized that life is sustained across a web of dependencies that we each have a duty to maintain. Their work brought into sharp focus the value and dignity of Black women’s domestic work, confronted the destructive myths of land exploitation and white supremacy, and explored ways of knowing attuned to a life-giving erotic energy that spans bodies and relations. In doing so, they also expanded the scope of American communism.
By tracing the attention these seven women pay to “life-making” as the relations supporting survival and wellbeing—from Harlem to the American South and Midwest—In the Company of Radical Women Writers reveals their groundbreaking reconceptions of the political and provides bracing inspiration in the ongoing fight for justice.
"I began this book to articulate my sense of disappointment and alienation from the status I had fought so hard to achieve." A remarkable admission from an alumnus of Harvard Law School who has held tenured professorships in the law schools of Yale and Stanford and has taught in the law schools of Harvard and Chicago.
In this personal reflection on the status of higher education, Julius Getman probes the tensions between status and meaning, elitism and egalitarianism, that challenge the academy and academics today. He shows how higher education creates a shared intellectual community among people of varied races and classes—while simultaneously dividing people on the basis of education and status.
In the course of his explorations, Getman touches on many of the most current issues in higher education today, including the conflict between teaching and research, challenges to academic freedom, the struggle over multiculturalism, and the impact of minority and feminist activism. Getman presents these issues through relevant, often humorous anecdotes, using his own and others' experiences in coping with the constantly changing academic landscape.
Written from a liberal perspective, the book offers another side of the story told in such works as Allan Bloom's The Closing of the American Mind and Roger Kimball's Tenured Radicals.
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