front cover of The Ascent of Affect
The Ascent of Affect
Genealogy and Critique
Ruth Leys
University of Chicago Press, 2017
In recent years, emotions have become a major, vibrant topic of research not merely in the biological and psychological sciences but throughout a wide swath of the humanities and social sciences as well. Yet, surprisingly, there is still no consensus on their basic nature or workings.
 
Ruth Leys’s brilliant, much anticipated history, therefore, is a story of controversy and disagreement. The Ascent of Affect focuses on the post–World War II period, when interest in emotions as an object of study began to revive. Leys analyzes the ongoing debate over how to understand emotions, paying particular attention to the continual conflict between camps that argue for the intentionality or meaning of emotions but have trouble explaining their presence in non-human animals and those that argue for the universality of emotions but struggle when the question turns to meaning. Addressing the work of key figures from across the spectrum, considering the potentially misleading appeal of neuroscience for those working in the humanities, and bringing her story fully up to date by taking in the latest debates, Leys presents here the most thorough analysis available of how we have tried to think about how we feel.
 
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Ball Don't Lie
Myth, Genealogy, and Invention in the Cultures of Basketball
Yago Colás
Temple University Press, 2016

Pro basketball player Rasheed Wallace often exclaimed the pragmatic truth “Ball don’t lie!” during a game. It is a protest against a referee’s bad calls. But the slogan, which originated in pickup games, brings the reality of a racialized urban playground into mainstream American popular culture. 

In Ball Don’t Lie!, Yago Colás traces the various forms of power at work in the intersections between basketball and language from the game’s invention to the present day. He critiques existing popular myths concerning the history of basketball, contextualizes them, and presents an alternative history of the sport inspired by innovations. Colás emphasizes the creative prerogative of players and the ways in which their innovations shape—and are shaped by—broader cultural and social phenomena.

Ball Don't Lie! shows that basketball cannot be reduced to a single, fixed or timeless essence but instead is a continually evolving exhibition of physical culture that flexibly adapts to and sparks changes in American society.

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The Beggar and the Professor
A Sixteenth-Century Family Saga
Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie
University of Chicago Press, 1997
From a wealth of vivid autobiographical writings, Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie reconstructs the extraordinary life of Thomas Platter and the lives of his sons. With masterful erudition, Le Roy Ladurie deepens and expands the historical contexts of these accounts and, in the process, brings to life the customs, perceptions, and character of an age poised at the threshold of modernity.

"Le Roy Ladurie paints a remarkably contemporary picture of life in the sixteenth century. . . . It's a good story, told with a deft narrative touch."—Michael S. Kimmel, The Nation

"Le Roy Ladurie is a master of the representative detail and uses the Platters' lives as a means to see a whole century 'through a glass, darkly'."—The Independent

"Le Roy Ladurie has not only thoroughly sketched out the Platters' particular brand of gusto, he has also made it seem a defining characteristic of the sixteenth century."—The New Republic

"All [of] the drama and pathos of a Disney film."—Emily Eakin, Lingua Franca
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Blessed Are the Peacemakers
Small Histories during World War II, Letter Writing, and Family History Methodology
Suzanne Kesler Rumsey
University of Alabama Press, 2021
An uncommon and intimate account of the lives of two conscientious objectors
 
In the summer of 2013, Suzanne Kesler Rumsey discovered hundreds of letters exchanged between her late grandparents, Miriam and Benjamin Kesler. The letters, written between 1941 and 1946, were filled with typical wartime sentiments: love and longing, anguish at being apart, uncertainty about the war and the country’s future, and attempts at humor to keep their spirits up. What is unusual about their story is that Ben Kesler was not writing from a theater of war. Instead, Ben, a member of the Dunkard Brethren Church, was a conscientious objector. He, along with about 12,000 other men, opted to join the Civilian Public Service (CPS) and contribute to “work of national importance” at one of the 218 CPS camps around the country.

In Blessed Are the Peacemakers: Small Histories during World War II, Letter Writing, and Family History Methodology, Rumsey has mined not only her grandparents’ letters but also archival research on CPS camps and historical data from several Mennonite and Brethren archives to recapture the narrative of Ben’s service at two different camps and of Miriam’s struggle to support herself and her husband financially at the young age of seventeen. Ben and Miriam’s life during the war was extraordinarily ordinary, spanning six years of unrecognized and humble work for their country. Ben was not compensated for his work in the camps, and Miriam stayed home and worked as a day laborer, as a live-in maid, as a farmhand, and in the family butcher shop in order to earn enough money to support them both. Small histories like that of her grandparents, Rumsey argues, provide a unique perspective on significant political and historical moments.

Blessed Are the Peacemakers also explores the rhetorical functions of letter writing as well as the methodology of family history writing. Ben and Miriam’s letters provide an apt backdrop to examine the genre, a relatively understudied mode of literacy. Rumsey situates the young couple’s correspondence within ars dictaminis, the art of letter writing, granting new insights into the genre and how personal accounts shape our understanding of historical events.
 
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The Cadottes
A Fur Trade Family on Lake Superior
Robert Silbernagel
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2023
The Great Lakes fur trade spanned two centuries and thousands of miles, but the story of one particular family, the Cadottes, illuminates the history of trade and trapping while exploring under-researched stories of French-Ojibwe political, social, and economic relations. Multiple generations of Cadottes were involved in the trade, usually working as interpreters and peacemakers, as the region passed from French to British to American control. Focusing on the years 1760 to 1840—the heyday of the Great Lakes fur trade—Robert Silbernagel delves into the lives of the Cadottes, with particular emphasis on the Ojibwe–French Canadian Michel Cadotte and his Ojibwe wife, Equaysayway, who were traders and regional leaders on Madeline Island for nearly forty years. In The Cadottes: A Fur Trade Family on Lake Superior, Silbernagel deepens our understanding of this era with stories of resilient, remarkable people.
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Chimalpahin and the Kingdoms of Chalco
Susan Schroeder
University of Arizona Press, 1991
"A thorough treatment of the sociopolitical history of the kingdoms of Chalco as seen through the eyes of one of the great post-Conquest Nahua historians. . . . Students of Nahuatl language will be rewarded by the extensive citations (with accompanying translations) of relevant material from original Nahua sources." —Choice

"By delineating the concepts and personae that were most salient in Chimalpahin's politically-oriented perspective on the past, Schroeder has advanced our understanding of native Mexican political organization and has made a major contribution toward interpreting the work of this Nahua historian." —Anthropos

"In this well-structured volume, Susan Schroeder synthesizes Chimalpahin's detailed information on the Prehispanic kingdoms of Chalco (located in the southern Valley of Mexico) with particular emphasis on their sociopolitical organization. . . . A valuable contribution." —American Antiquity

"This is an important piece of scholarship which makes more accessible to general historians of colonial Mexico an item of Nahuatl literature." —The Americas
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Circling Windrock Mountain
Two Hundred Years Appalachia
Augusta Grove Bell
University of Tennessee Press, 1999
Around 1800, a Revolutionary War veteran named Micajah Frost came to the Cumberland Mountains of East Tennessee and cleared a portion of virgin forest in what is now Anderson County. Others followed, and eventually this small area was dotted with settlers. In the years since, those settlers and their descendants witnessed the strife of the Civil War, the rise of the coal-mining and logging industries, the coming of the railroad, and countless smaller upheavals. Drawn largely from the memories of long-time residents, this delightful book revisits two hundred years of history in the communities surrounding what was locally called Windrock Mountain.

The stories Augusta Bell recounts take us from Oliver Springs—which had its origins in the grist mill Moses Winters built in 1799 and which later became a “boom town” with a fashionable resort hotel—to places like New River Valley, Graves Gap, and Duncan Flats. She depicts the everyday lives of the mountain people as well as the extraordinary events that sometimes shattered those lives—such as the Coal Creek War of 1891–93, in which miners squared off against state militia, and the two mine explosions that came a few years later, sealing up 268 men deep inside the mountain. Bell also tells of happier times, as when the famous Windrock Mine opened above Oliver Springs in 1909.

Tapping a rich lode of folklore and oral tradition, along with other historical sources, Circling Windrock Mountain offers a view of Appalachian life that defies old stereotypes. Far from being static, the communities described here saw an amazing variety of changes to which they adapted with resilience and ingenuity.

The Author: Augusta Grove Bell, a writer who now lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, has been a newspaper reporter and teacher. From 1958 to 1970, she lived in Anderson County, Tennessee, where she worked for the Oak Ridger and wrote feature stories that form much of the basis for this book.
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Common People
In Pursuit of My Ancestors
Alison Light
University of Chicago Press, 2015
“Family history begins with missing persons,” Alison Light writes in Common People. We wonder about those we’ve lost, and those we never knew, about the long skein that led to us, and to here, and to now. So we start exploring.
 
Most of us, however, give up a few generations back. We run into a gap, get embarrassed by a ne’er-do-well, or simply find our ancestors are less glamorous than we’d hoped. That didn’t stop Alison Light: in the last weeks of her father’s life, she embarked on an attempt to trace the history of her family as far back as she could reasonably go. The result is a clear-eyed, fascinating, frequently moving account of the lives of everyday people, of the tough decisions and hard work, the good luck and bad breaks, that chart the course of a life. Light’s forebears—servants, sailors, farm workers—were among the poorest, traveling the country looking for work; they left few lasting marks on the world. But through her painstaking work in archives, and her ability to make the people and struggles of the past come alive, Light reminds us that “every life, even glimpsed through the chinks of the census, has its surprises and secrets.”
 
What she did for the servants of Bloomsbury in her celebrated Mrs. Woolf and the Servants Light does here for her own ancestors, and, by extension, everyone’s: draws their experiences from the shadows of the past and helps us understand their lives, estranged from us by time yet inextricably interwoven with our own. Family history, in her hands, becomes a new kind of public history.
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Creating American Civilization
A Genealogy of American Literature as an Academic Discipline
David Shumway
University of Minnesota Press, 1994

“Shumway has written a penetrating and provocative account of the making of American civilization as an academic field.”

Gerald GraffUniversity of ChicagoDavid R. Shumway contends that American literature is the product of study - the deliberate invention of a discipline seeking to define the character and legitimate the existence of a specifically American civilization. He traces the various reconstitutions of American literature by examining the discipline’s practices and techniques, discourses and structures, paradigms and unstated assumptions.This genealogy begins around 1890, when American literature as defined by institutions outside the academy, such as magazines and publishing houses, acquired much of the ideology it would display in later phases, including sexism, racism, and class bias. Singular in its treatment of American literary study as a discipline rather than as criticism and in its insistence on the cultural and political work carried on by this discipline, Creating American Civilization will engage literary theorists and historians as well as individuals with an interest in American literature.
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Creating Family Archives
A Step-by-Step Guide to Saving Your Memories for Future Generations
Margot Note
Society of American Archivists, 2019
Not just a gift. It's history in the making. Family history is important. Photos, videos, aged documents, and cherished papers--these are the memories that you want to save. And they need a better home than a cardboard box. Creating Family Archives is a book written by an archivist for you, your family, and friends, taking you step-by-step through the process of arranging and preserving your own family archives. It’s the first book of its kind offered to the public by the Society of American Archivists. Gathering up the boxes of photos and years of video is a big job. But this fascinating and instructional book will make it easier and, in the end, much better.
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Creek Indian History
A Historical Narrative of the Genealogy, Traditions and Downfall of the Ispocoga or Creek Indian Tribe of Indians by One of the Tribe, George Stiggins (1788-1845)
George Stiggins
University of Alabama Press, 2003
George Stiggins, a Creek Indian half blood living in Alabama, wrote this history more than 150 years ago. Raised in the white culture by his father, an English trader, Stiggins nevertheless lived in close contact with the Creeks because his mother was a full blood of the Natchez tribe, part of the Creek Confederacy.

Stiggins writes with firsthand knowledge of the tribes in the central southeast—the Alabamas, Natchez, Abekas, Uchees, and others. He tells of their origins, their towns and chiefs, and their way of life, he traces critical events leading to the Creek War—the battles of Burnt Corn and Fort Mims—and details the roles of the Indian leaders involved. In “Tecumseh and the Age of Prophecy,” he describes how the powerful influence of prophets, such as Josiah Francis and Jim Boy, who incited the Creeks to civil war as the confederacy split into war and peace factions. Stiggin’s account of William Weatherford’s controversial role in the Creek War has special value because Weatherford was Stiggins’s brother-in-law. His descriptions of religious and social aspects of the Creek lifeways make this work prime source material.

William Wyman’s notes and introduction put the Stiggins account into historical perspective and trace its circuitous route to publication. First issued in 1989, Creek Indian History has become an important primary document for the study of Native American history and culture.
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The Cypress and Other Writings of a German Pioneer in Texas
By Hermann Seele
University of Texas Press, 1979

When Hermann Seele anived in New Braunfels in 1845, the raw colony was plagued by poverty, disease, lack of food, and hostile Indians. This personal record of the Germans in Texas shows their evolution from struggling colonists to prosperous citizens.

From his viewpoint of a hardworking yet imaginative pioneer, Seele presents first a history of German immigration and settlement in Texas during the nineteenth century. Next, his autobiographical writings range from a "sentimental recollection" of his first Christmas Eve in Texas to his first day of teaching in New Braunfels, from accounts of the popular singing society to murder and justice along the Comal River. In addition, Seele's romantic novel, The Cypress, is a delightful though improbable tale of a traveling botanist, a chieftain's daughter, and a savage Indian cult.

Hermann Seele—farmer, lawyer, teacher, lay preacher, mayor, state representative, Civil War major, and editor—epitomizes the best of the German immigrants who established their communities as models of respectability and prosperity.

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The Descent of Political Theory
The Genealogy of an American Vocation
John G. Gunnell
University of Chicago Press, 1993
This provocative work reveals the origins and development of political theory as it is presently understood—and misunderstood. Tracing the evolution of the field from the nineteenth century to the present, John G. Gunnell shows how current controversies, like those over liberalism or the relationship of theory to practice, are actually the unresolved legacy of a forgotten past. By uncovering this past, Gunnell exposes the forces that animate and structure political theory today.

Gunnell reconstructs the evolution of the field by locating it within the broader development of political science and American social science in general. During the behavioral revolution that swept political science in the 1950s, the relationship between political theory and political science changed dramatically, relegating theory to the margins of an increasingly empirical discipline. Gunnell demonstrates that the estrangement of political theory is rooted in a much older quarrel: the authority of knowledge versus political theory is rooted in a much older quarrel: the authority of knowledge versus political authority, academic versus public discourse. By disclosing the origin of this dispute, he opens the way for a clearer understanding of the basis and purpose of political theory.

As critical as it is revelatory, this thoughtful book should be read by any one interested in the history of political theory or science—or in the relationship of social science to political practice in the United States.
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The Dialectics of Our America
Genealogy, Cultural Critique, and Literary History
José David Saldívar
Duke University Press, 1991
Joining the current debates in American literary history, José David Saldívar offers a challenging new perspective on what constitutes not only the canon in American literature, but also the notion of America itself. His aim is the articulation of a fresh, transgeographical conception of American culture, one more responsive to the geographical ties and political crosscurrents of the hemisphere than to narrow national ideologies.
Saldívar pursues this goal through an array of oppositional critical and creative practices. He analyzes a range of North American writers of color (Rolando Hinojosa, Gloria Anzaldúa, Arturo Islas, Ntozake Shange, and others) and Latin American authors (José Martí, Roberto Fernández Retamar, Gabriel García Márquez, and others), whose work forms a radical critique of the dominant culture, its politics, and its restrictive modes of expression. By doing so, Saldívar opens the traditional American canon to a dialog with other voices, not just the voices of national minorities, but those of regional cultures different from the prevalent anglocentric model.
The Dialectics of Our America, in its project to expand the “canon” and define a pan-American literary tradition, will make a critical difference in ongoing attempts to reconceptualize American literary history.
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Distorted Descent
White Claims to Indigenous Identity
Darryl Leroux
University of Manitoba Press, 2019

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Dolly Mixtures
The Remaking of Genealogy
Sarah Franklin
Duke University Press, 2007
While the creation of Dolly the sheep, the world's most famous clone, triggered an enormous amount of discussion about human cloning, in Dolly Mixtures the anthropologist Sarah Franklin looks beyond that much-rehearsed controversy to some of the other reasons why the iconic animal's birth and death were significant. Building on the work of historians and anthropologists, Franklin reveals Dolly as the embodiment of agricultural, scientific, social, and commercial histories which are, in turn, bound up with national and imperial aspirations. Dolly was the offspring of a long tradition of animal domestication, as well as the more recent histories of capital accumulation through selective breeding, and enhanced national competitiveness through the control of biocapital. Franklin traces Dolly's connections to Britain's centuries-old sheep and wool markets (which were vital to the nation's industrial revolution) and to Britain's export of animals to its colonies—particularly Australia—to expand markets and produce wealth. Moving forward in time, she explains the celebrity sheep's links to the embryonic cell lines and global bioscientific innovation of the late twentieth century and early twenty-first.

Franklin combines wide-ranging sources—from historical accounts of sheep-breeding, to scientific representations of cloning by nuclear transfer, to popular media reports of Dolly's creation and birth—as she draws on gender and kinship theory as well as postcolonial and science studies. She argues that there is an urgent need for more nuanced responses to the complex intersections between the social and the biological, intersections which are literally reshaping reproduction and genealogy. In Dolly Mixtures, Franklin uses the renowned sheep as an opportunity to begin developing a critical language to identify and evaluate the reproductive possibilities that post-Dolly biology now faces, and to look back at some of the important historical formations that enabled and prefigured Dollys creation.

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The Empire of Love
Toward a Theory of Intimacy, Genealogy, and Carnality
Elizabeth A. Povinelli
Duke University Press, 2006
In The Empire of Love anthropologist Elizabeth A. Povinelli reflects on a set of ethical and normative claims about the governance of love, sociality, and the body that circulates in liberal settler colonies such as the United States and Australia. She boldly theorizes intimate relations as pivotal sites where liberal logics and aspirations absorbed through settler imperialism are manifest, where discourses of self-sovereignty, social constraint, and value converge.

For more than twenty years, Povinelli has traveled to the social worlds of indigenous men and women living at Belyuen, a small community in the Northern Territory of Australia. More recently she has moved across communities of alternative progressive queer movements in the United States, particularly those who identify as radical faeries. In this book she traces how liberal binary concepts of individual freedom and social constraint influence understandings of intimacy in these two worlds. At the same time, she describes alternative models of social relations within each group in order to highlight modes of intimacy that transcend a reductive choice between freedom and constraint.

Shifting focus away from identities toward the social matrices out of which identities and divisions emerge, Povinelli offers a framework for thinking through such issues as what counts as sexuality and which forms of intimate social relations result in the distribution of rights, recognition, and resources, and which do not. In The Empire of Love Povinelli calls for, and begins to formulate, a politics of “thick life,” a way of representing social life nuanced enough to meet the density and variation of actual social worlds.

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Encounter with the Plumed Serpent
Drama and Power in the Heart of Mesoamerica
Maarten Jansen
University Press of Colorado, 2007
The Mixtec, or the people of Ñuu Savi ('Nation of the Rain God'), one of the major civilizations of ancient Mesoamerica, made their home in the highlands of Oaxaca, where they resisted both Aztec military expansion and the Spanish conquest. In Encounter with the Plumed Serpent, two leading scholars present and interpret the sacred histories narrated in the Mixtec codices, the largest surviving collection of pre-Columbian manuscripts in existence. In these screenfold books, ancient painter-historians chronicled the politics of the Mixtec from approximately a.d. 900 to 1521, portraying the royal families, rituals, wars, alliances, and ideology of the times.

By analyzing and cross-referencing the codices, which have been fragmented and dispersed in far-flung archives, the authors attempt to reconstruct Mixtec history. Their synthesis here builds on long examination of the ancient manuscripts. Adding useful interpretation and commentary, Jansen and Pérez Jiménez synthesize the large body of surviving documents into the first unified narrative of Mixtec sacred history.

Archaeologists and other scholars as well as readers with an interest in Mesoamerican cultures will find this lavishly illustrated volume a compelling and fascinating history and a major step forward in knowledge of the Mixtec.
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The Enlightenment
A Genealogy
Dan Edelstein
University of Chicago Press, 2010

What was the Enlightenment? Though many scholars have attempted to solve this riddle, none has made as much use of contemporary answers as Dan Edelstein does here. In seeking to recover where, when, and how the concept of “the Enlightenment” first emerged, Edelstein departs from genealogies that trace it back to political and philosophical developments in England and the Dutch Republic. According to Edelstein, by the 1720s scholars and authors in France were already employing a constellation of terms—such as l’esprit philosophique—to describe what we would today call the Enlightenment. But Edelstein argues that it was within the French Academies, and in the context of the Quarrel of the Ancients and the Moderns, that the key definition, concepts, and historical narratives of the Enlightenment were crafted.

A necessary corrective to many of our contemporary ideas about the Enlightenment, Edelstein’s book turns conventional thinking about the period on its head. Concise, clear, and contrarian, The Enlightenment will be welcomed by all teachers and students of the period.

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Exploring Civil War Wisconsin
A Survival Guide for Researchers
Brett Barker
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2003

The innovative format of Exploring Civil War Wisconsin makes it easy for Civil War buffs, genealogists, and students to find and effectively use the vast array of historical materials about the Civil War found in archives, military and census records, published firsthand accounts, newspapers, and even on the Internet. This lively, illustrated guide focuses on Wisconsin in the Civil War, but is broadly applicable to Civil War research anywhere. Images of original documents and historic photographs illustrate every chapter, acquainting readers with both the Civil War and its sources. The easy-to-use and informative text is unlike anything else currently on the market.

Throughout the book, boxed features and sidebars provide background information and tips on how to do research. Author Brett Barker explains how to uncover the history of an individual soldier, his regiment, and his role in the Union Army using rosters, military records, pension files, and memoirs. And, he shows how to explore the home front during the war using the census, newspapers, city directories, and government records.

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Familial Forms
Politics and Genealogy in Seventeenth-Century English Literature
Erin Murphy
University of Delaware Press, 2011

Familial Forms is the first full-length study to examine how literary writers engaged the politics of genealogy that helped define the “century of revolution.” By demonstrating how conflicts over the family-state analogy intersected with the period’s battles over succession, including: the ascent of James I, the execution of Charles I, disputes over the terms of the Interregnum government, the Restoration of Charles II, the Exclusion Crisis, the deposition of James II, the ascent of William and Mary, and Anne’s failure to produce a surviving heir, this study provides a new map of the seventeenth-century politics of family in England. Beginning with a reconsideration of Jacobean patriarchalism, Familial Forms focuses on the work of John Milton, Lucy Hutchinson, John Dryden, and Mary Astell. From their contrasting political and gendered positions, these authors contemplated and contested the relevance of marriage and kinship to government. Their writing illuminates two crucial elements of England’s conflicts. First, the formal qualities of poems and prose tracts reveal that not only was there a competition among different versions of the family-state analogy, but also a competition over its very status as an analogy. Second, through their negotiations of linear and nonlinear forms, Milton, Hutchinson, Dryden, and Astell demonstrate the centrality of temporality to the period’s political battles.

Through close textual analysis of poetry, political tracts, parliamentary records, and nonliterary genealogies, Familial Forms offers a fresh understanding of the seventeenth-century politics of genealogy. It also provides new answers to long-standing critical questions about the poetic form of canonical works, such as Paradise Lost and Absalom and Achitophel, and illuminates the political significance of newly-canonical works by women writers, including Aemilia Lanyer’s Salve Deus Rex Judaeoreum, Hutchinson’s Order and Disorder, and Astell’s A Serious Proposal to the Ladies.

Published by University of Delaware Press. Distributed worldwide by Rutgers University Press.
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Family History Record Book
James Bell
University of Minnesota Press, 1980
The Family History Record Book was first published in 1980.The Family History Record Book is designed to provide tools for research into your family’s history. Following the principles outlined in Searching for Your Ancestors, James B. Bell, a historian and lecturer, has collected charts and forms that will help organize your information. He provides detailed instructions on how to request specific information from various sources (census, immigration and naturalization, land, military, and church records) and how to use the forms for simple and efficient record keeling. This step-by-step system will be a valuable aid for both beginning and experienced genealogists.
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Family Trees
A History of Genealogy in America
François Weil
Harvard University Press, 2013

The quest for roots has been an enduring American preoccupation. Over the centuries, generations have sketched coats of arms, embroidered family trees, established local genealogical societies, and carefully filled in the blanks in their bibles, all in pursuit of self-knowledge and status through kinship ties. This long and varied history of Americans’ search for identity illuminates the story of America itself, according to François Weil, as fixations with social standing, racial purity, and national belonging gave way in the twentieth century to an embrace of diverse ethnicity and heritage.

Seeking out one’s ancestors was a genteel pursuit in the colonial era, when an aristocratic pedigree secured a place in the British Atlantic empire. Genealogy developed into a middle-class diversion in the young republic. But over the next century, knowledge of one’s family background came to represent a quasi-scientific defense of elite “Anglo-Saxons” in a nation transformed by immigration and the emancipation of slaves. By the mid-twentieth century, when a new enthusiasm for cultural diversity took hold, the practice of tracing one’s family tree had become thoroughly democratized and commercialized.

Today, Ancestry.com attracts over two million members with census records and ship manifests, while popular television shows depict celebrities exploring archives and submitting to DNA testing to learn the stories of their forebears. Further advances in genetics promise new insights as Americans continue their restless pursuit of past and place in an ever-changing world.

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The Force of Truth
Critique, Genealogy, and Truth-Telling in Michel Foucault
Daniele Lorenzini
University of Chicago Press, 2023
A groundbreaking examination of Michel Foucault's history of truth.

Many blame Michel Foucault for our post-truth and conspiracy-laden society. In this provocative work, Daniele Lorenzini argues that such criticism fundamentally misunderstands the philosopher’s project. Foucault did not question truth itself but what Lorenzini calls “the force of truth,” or how some truth claims are given the power to govern our conduct while others are not. This interest, Lorenzini shows, drove Foucault to articulate a new ethics and politics of truth-telling precisely in order to evade the threat of relativism. The Force of Truth explores this neglected dimension of Foucault’s project by putting his writings on regimes of truth and parrhesia in conversation with early analytic philosophy and by drawing out the “possibilizing” elements of Foucault’s genealogies that remain vital for practicing critique today.
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The Founding Mothers of Mackinac Island
The Agatha Biddle Band of 1870
Theresa L. Weller
Michigan State University Press, 2021
Drawing on a wide array of historical sources, Theresa L. Weller provides a comprehensive history of the lineage of the seventy-four members of the Agatha Biddle band in 1870. A highly unusual Native and Métis community, the band included just eight men but sixty-six women. Agatha Biddle was a member of the band from its first enumeration in 1837 and became its chief in the early 1860s. Also, unlike most other bands, which were typically made up of family members, this one began as a small handful of unrelated Indian women joined by the fact that the US government owed them payments in the form of annuities in exchange for land given up in the 1836 Treaty of Washington, DC. In this volume, the author unveils the genealogies for all the families who belonged to the band under Agatha Biddle’s leadership, and in doing so, offers the reader fascinating insights into Mackinac Island life in the nineteenth century.
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From Point to Pixel
A Genealogy of Digital Aesthetics
Meredith Hoy
Dartmouth College Press, 2017
In this fiercely ambitious study, Meredith Anne Hoy seeks to reestablish the very definitions of digital art and aesthetics in art history. She begins by problematizing the notion of digital aesthetics, tracing the nineteenth- and twentieth-century movements that sought to break art down into its constituent elements, which in many ways predicted and paved the way for our acceptance of digital art. Through a series of case studies, Hoy questions the separation between analog and digital art and finds that while there may be sensual and experiential differences, they fall within the same technological categories. She also discusses computational art, in which the sole act of creation is the building of a self-generating algorithm. The medium isn’t the message—what really matters is the degree to which the viewer can sense a creative hand in the art.
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The Genealogical Sublime
Julia Creet
University of Massachusetts Press, 2020
Since the early 2000s, genealogy has become a lucrative business, an accelerating online industry, a massive data mining project, and fodder for reality television. But the fact remains that our contemporary fascination with family history cannot be understood independently of the powerful technological tools that aid and abet in the search for traces of blood, belonging, and difference.

In The Genealogical Sublime, Julia Creet traces the histories of the largest, longest-running, most lucrative, and most rapidly growing genealogical databases to delineate a broader history of the industry. As each unique case study reveals, new database and DNA technologies enable an obsessive completeness—the desire to gather all of the world's genealogical records in the interests of life beyond death. Archival research and firsthand interviews with Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints officials, key industry players (including Ancestry.com founders and Family Search executives), and professional and amateur family historians round out this timely and essential study.
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Genealogy and Literature
Lee Quinby, Editor
University of Minnesota Press, 1995

Genealogy and Literature was first published in 1995. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

Traditionalists insist that literature transcends culture. Others counter that it is subversive by nature. By challenging both claims, Genealogy and Literature reveals the importance of literature for understanding dominant and often violent power/knowledge relations within a given society.

The authors explore the ways in which literature functions as a cultural practice, the links between death and literature as a field of discourse, and the possibilities of dismantling modes of bodily regulation. Through wide-ranging investigations of writing from England, France, Nigeria, Peru, Japan, and the United States, they reinvigorate the study of literature as a means of understanding the complexities of everyday experience.

Contributors: Claudette Kemper Columbus, Lennard J. Davis, Simon During, Michel Foucault, Ellen J. Goldner, Tom Hayes, Kate Mehuron, Donald Mengay, Imafedia Okhamafe, Lee Quinby, José David Saldivar, Malini Johar Schueller.

Lee Quinby is professor of English and American studies at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. She is the author of Anti-Apocalypse: Exercises in Genealogical Criticism (Minnesota, 1994).

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Genealogy and Status
Hereditary Office Holding and Kinship in North China under Mongol Rule
Tomoyasu Iiyama
Harvard University Press, 2023

By shedding light on a long-forgotten epigraphic genre that flourished in North China during the Mongol Empire, or Yuan Dynasty (1271–1368), Genealogy and Status explores the ways the conquered Chinese people understood and represented the alien Mongol ruling principles through their own cultural tradition. This epigraphic genre, which this book collectively calls “genealogical steles,” was quite unique in the history of Chinese epigraphy.

Northern Chinese officials commissioned these steles exclusively to record a family’s extensive genealogy, rather than the biography or achievements of an individual. Tomoyasu Iiyama shows how the rise of these steles demonstrates that Mongol rule fundamentally affected how northern Chinese families defined, organized, and commemorated their kinship. Because most of these inscriptions are in Classical Chinese, they appear to be part of Chinese tradition. In fact, they reflect a massive social change in Chinese society that occurred because of Mongol rule in China.

The evolution of genealogical steles delineates how local elites, while thinking of themselves as the heirs of traditional Chinese culture, fully accommodated to Mongol imperial rule and became instead one of its cornerstones in eastern Eurasia.

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A Genealogy of Manners
Transformations of Social Relations in France and England from the Fourteenth to the Eighteenth Century
Jorge Arditi
University of Chicago Press, 1998
Remarkable for its scope and erudition, Jorge Arditi's new study offers a fascinating history of mores from the High Middle Ages to the Enlightenment. Drawing on the pioneering ideas of Norbert Elias, Michel Foucault, and Pierre Bourdieu, Arditi examines the relationship between power and social practices and traces how power changes over time.

Analyzing courtesy manuals and etiquette books from the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, Arditi shows how the dominant classes of a society were able to create a system of social relations and put it into operation. The result was an infrastructure in which these classes could successfully exert power. He explores how the ecclesiastical authorities of the Middle Ages, the monarchies from the fifteenth through the seventeenth century, and the aristocracies during the early stages of modernity all forged their own codes of manners within the confines of another, dominant order. Arditi goes on to describe how each of these different groups, through the sustained deployment of their own forms of relating with one another, gradually moved into a position of dominance.

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Genealogy Of Queer Theory
William Turner
Temple University Press, 2000
Who are queers and what do they want? Could it be that we are all queers? Beginning with such questions, William B. Turner's lucid and engaging book traces the roots of queer theory to the growing awareness that few of us precisely fit standard categories for sexual and gender identity.

Turner shows how Michal Foucault's work contributed to feminists' investigations into the ways that power relates to identity. In the last decades of the twentieth century, feminists were the first to challenge the assumption that a claim to universal identity -- the white male citizen -- should serve as the foundation of political thought and action. Difference matters. Race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality interact, producing a wide array of identities that resist rigid definition and are mutable. By understanding the notion of transhistorical categories -- woman, man, homosexual, and so forth -- feminist and gay male scholars launched queer theoretical work as a new way to think about the politics of gender and sexuality.

A Geneology of Queer Theory probes the fierce debates among scholars and activists, weighing the charges that queer readings  of texts and identity politics do not constitute and might inhibit radical social change. Written by a historian, it considers the implications of queer theory for historical  inquiry and the distinction between philosophy and history. As such, the book will interest readers of gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender studies, intellectual history, political theory, and the history of gender/sexuality.
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A Genealogy of Terror in Eighteenth-Century France
Ronald Schechter
University of Chicago Press, 2018
In contemporary political discourse, it is common to denounce violent acts as “terroristic.” But this reflexive denunciation is a surprisingly recent development. In A Genealogy of Terror in Eighteenth-Century France, Ronald Schechter tells the story of the term’s evolution in Western thought, examining a neglected yet crucial chapter of our complicated romance with terror.
 
For centuries prior to the French Revolution, the word “terror” had largely positive connotations. Subjects flattered monarchs with the label “terror of his enemies.” Lawyers invoked the “terror of the laws.” Theater critics praised tragedies that imparted terror and pity. By August 1794, however, terror had lost its positive valence. As revolutionaries sought to rid France of its enemies, terror became associated with surveillance committees, tribunals, and the guillotine. By unearthing the tradition that associated terror with justice, magnificence, and health, Schechter helps us understand how the revolutionary call to make terror the order of the day could inspire such fervent loyalty in the first place—even as the gratuitous violence of the revolution eventually transformed it into the dreadful term we would recognize today. Most important, perhaps, Schechter proposes that terror is not an import to Western civilization—as contemporary discourse often suggests—but rather a domestic product with a long and consequential tradition. 
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A Genealogy of the Gentleman
Women Writers and Masculinity in the Eighteenth Century
Mary Beth Harris
University of Delaware Press, 2024
A Genealogy of the Gentleman argues that eighteenth-century women writers made key interventions in modern ideals of masculinity and authorship through their narrative constructions of the gentleman. It challenges two latent critical assumptions: first, that the gentleman’s masculinity is normative, private, and therefore oppositional to concepts of performance; and second, that women writers, from their disadvantaged position within a patriarchal society, had no real means of influencing dominant structures of masculinity. By placing writers such as Mary Davys, Eliza Haywood, Charlotte Lennox, Elizabeth Inchbald, and Mary Robinson in dialogue with canonical representatives of the gentleman author—Joseph Addison and Richard Steele, David Hume, Samuel Johnson, and Samuel Richardson—Mary Beth Harris shows how these women carved out a space for their literary authority not by overtly opposing their male critics and society’s patriarchal structure, but by rewriting the persona of the gentleman as a figure whose very desirability and appeal were dependent on women’s influence. Ultimately, this project considers the import of these women writers’ legacy, both progressive and conservative, on hegemonic standards of masculinity that persist to this day.
 
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Genealogy of the Pagan Gods
Giovanni Boccaccio
Harvard University Press, 2011

Giovanni Boccaccio’s Genealogy of the Pagan Gods is an ambitious work of humanistic scholarship whose goal is to plunder ancient and medieval literary sources so as to create a massive synthesis of Greek and Roman mythology. The work also contains a famous defense of the value of studying ancient pagan poetry in a Christian world.

The complete work in fifteen books contains a meticulously organized genealogical tree identifying approximately 950 Greco-Roman mythological figures. The scope is enormous: 723 chapters include over a thousand citations from two hundred Greek, Roman, medieval, and Trecento authors. Throughout the Genealogy, Boccaccio deploys an array of allegorical, historical, and philological critiques of the ancient myths and their iconography.

Much more than a mere compilation of pagan myths, the Genealogy incorporates hundreds of excerpts from and comments on ancient poetry, illustrative of the new spirit of philological and cultural inquiry emerging in the early Renaissance. It is at once the most ambitious work of literary scholarship of the early Renaissance and a demonstration to contemporaries of the moral and cultural value of studying ancient poetry. This is the first volume of a projected three-volume set of Boccaccio’s complete Genealogy.

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Genealogy of the Pagan Gods
Giovanni Boccaccio
Harvard University Press, 2011

Genealogy of the Pagan Gods by Giovanni Boccaccio (1313–1375) is an ambitious work of humanistic scholarship whose goal is to plunder ancient and medieval literary sources so as to create a massive synthesis of Greek and Roman mythology. The work also contains a famous defense of the value of studying ancient pagan poetry in a Christian world.

The complete work in fifteen books contains a meticulously organized genealogical tree identifying approximately 950 Greco-Roman mythological figures. The scope is enormous: 723 chapters include over a thousand citations from 200 Greek, Roman, medieval, and Trecento authors. Throughout the Genealogy, Boccaccio deploys an array of allegorical, historical, and philological critiques of the ancient myths and their iconography.

Much more than a mere compilation of pagan myths, the Genealogy incorporates hundreds of excerpts from and comments on ancient poetry, illustrative of the new spirit of philological and cultural inquiry emerging in the early Renaissance. It is at once the most ambitious work of literary scholarship of the early Renaissance and a demonstration to contemporaries of the moral and cultural value of studying ancient poetry.

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The Government of Desire
A Genealogy of the Liberal Subject
Miguel de Beistegui
University of Chicago Press, 2018
Liberalism, Miguel de Beistegui argues in The Government of Desire, is best described as a technique of government directed towards the self, with desire as its central mechanism.  Whether as economic interest, sexual drive, or the basic longing for recognition, desire is accepted as a core component of our modern self-identities, and something we ought to cultivate. But this has not been true in all times and all places. For centuries, as far back as late antiquity and early Christianity, philosophers believed that desire was an impulse that needed to be suppressed in order for the good life, whether personal or collective, ethical or political, to flourish.  Though we now take it for granted, desire as a constitutive dimension of human nature and a positive force required a radical transformation, which coincided with the emergence of liberalism.
 
By critically exploring Foucault’s claim that Western civilization is a civilization of desire, de Beistegui crafts a provocative and original genealogy of this shift in thinking. He shows how the relationship between identity, desire, and government has been harnessed and transformed in the modern world, shaping our relations with others and ourselves, and establishing desire as an essential driving force for the constitution of a new and better social order. But is it? The Government of Desire argues that this is precisely what a contemporary politics of resistance must seek to overcome. By questioning the supposed universality of a politics based on recognition and the economic satisfaction of desire, de Beistegui raises the crucial question of how we can manage to be less governed today, and explores contemporary forms of counter-conduct.

​Drawing on a host of thinkers from philosophy, political theory, and psychoanalysis, and concluding with a call for a sovereign and anarchic form of desire, The Government of Desire is a groundbreaking account of our freedom and unfreedom, of what makes us both governed and ungovernable.
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Guide to Reference in Genealogy and Biography
Mary K. American Library Association
American Library Association, 2015

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Happily Sometimes After
Discovering Stories from Twelve Generations of an American Family
Andie Tucher
University of Massachusetts Press, 2014
For more than four hundred years, members of the author's family have been telling stories about their American lives. They have told of impassioned elopements and heart-breaking kidnaps, of hairbreadth escapes and shocking murders, of bigamists, changelings, patriots, Indians, fires, floods, and how the great-grandmother of Chief Justice John Marshall married the pirate Blackbeard by mistake.

In this beautifully written work, Andie Tucher considers family stories as another way to look at history, neither from the top down nor the bottom up but from the inside out. She explores not just what happened—everywhere from Jamestown to Boonesborough, from the bloody field at Chickamauga to the metropolis of the Gilded Age—but also what the storytellers thought or wished or hoped or feared happened. She offers insights into what they valued, what they lost, how they judged their own lives and found meaning in them. The narrative touches on sorrow, recompense, love, pain, and the persistent tension between hope and disappointment in a nation that by making the pursuit of happiness thinkable also made unhappiness regrettable.

Based on extensive research in archives, local history societies, and family-history sources as well as conversations and correspondence, Happily Sometimes After offers an intimate and unusual perspective on how ordinary people used stories to imagine the world they wished for, and what those stories reveal about their relationships with the world they actually had.
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Hispanic Arizona, 1536–1856
James E. Officer
University of Arizona Press, 1987
The history of the American West has usually been seen from the perspective of American expansion. Drawing on previously unexplored primary sources, James E. Officer has now produced a major work that traces the Hispanic roots of southern Arizona and northern Sonora—one which presents the Spanish and Mexican rather than Anglo point of view. Officer records the Hispanic presence from the earliest efforts at colonization on Spain’s northwestern frontier through the Spanish and Mexican years of rule, thus providing a unique reference on Southwestern history.
 
The heart of the work centers on the early nineteenth century. It explores subjects such as the constant threat posed by hostile Apaches, government intrigue and revolution in Sonora and the provincias internas, and patterns of land ownership in villages such as Tucson and Tubac. Also covered are the origins of land grants in present-day southern Arizona and the invasion of southern Arizona by American “49ers” as seen from the Mexican point of view. Officer traces kinship ties of several elite families who ruled the frontier province over many generations—men and women whose descendants remain influential in Sonora and Arizona today.
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How We Became Our Data
A Genealogy of the Informational Person
Colin Koopman
University of Chicago Press, 2019
We are now acutely aware, as if all of the sudden, that data matters enormously to how we live. How did information come to be so integral to what we can do? How did we become people who effortlessly present our lives in social media profiles and who are meticulously recorded in state surveillance dossiers and online marketing databases? What is the story behind data coming to matter so much to who we are?
In How We Became Our Data, Colin Koopman excavates early moments of our rapidly accelerating data-tracking technologies and their consequences for how we think of and express our selfhood today. Koopman explores the emergence of mass-scale record keeping systems like birth certificates and social security numbers, as well as new data techniques for categorizing personality traits, measuring intelligence, and even racializing subjects. This all culminates in what Koopman calls the “informational person” and the “informational power” we are now subject to. The recent explosion of digital technologies that are turning us into a series of algorithmic data points is shown to have a deeper and more turbulent past than we commonly think. Blending philosophy, history, political theory, and media theory in conversation with thinkers like Michel Foucault, Jürgen Habermas, and Friedrich Kittler, Koopman presents an illuminating perspective on how we have come to think of our personhood—and how we can resist its erosion.
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The Impossible Machine
A Genealogy of South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission
Adam Sitze
University of Michigan Press, 2016

Adam Sitze meticulously traces the origins of South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission back to two well-established instruments of colonial and imperial governance: the jurisprudence of indemnity and the commission of inquiry. This genealogy provides a fresh, though counterintuitive, understanding of the TRC’s legal, political, and cultural importance. The TRC’s genius, Sitze contends, is not the substitution of “forgiving” restorative justice for “strict” legal justice but rather the innovative adaptation of colonial law, sovereignty, and government. However, this approach also contains a potential liability: if the TRC’s origins are forgotten, the very enterprise intended to overturn the jurisprudence of colonial rule may perpetuate it. In sum, Sitze proposes a provocative new means by which South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission should be understood and evaluated.

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In Search of Susanna
Suzanne L. Bunkers
University of Iowa Press, 1996

 On a summer day in 1980 in Niederfeulen, Luxembourg, Suzanne Bunkers pored over parish records of her maternal ancestors, immigrants to the rural American Midwest in the mid 1800s. Suddenly, chance led her to the name Simmerl and to the missing piece in the genealogical puzzle that had brought her so far: Susanna Simmerl, Bunkers' paternal great-great-grandmother, who had given birth to an illegitimate daughter in 1856 before coming to America. Finding Susanna was the catalyst for Bunkers' intensely personal book, which blends history, memory, and imagination into a drama of two women's lives within their multigenerational family.

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Italy Illuminated
Biondo Flavio
Harvard University Press, 2016

Biondo Flavio (1392–1463), humanist and historian, was a pioneering figure in the Renaissance discovery of antiquity; famously, he was the author who popularized the term “Middle Age” to describe the period between the fall of the Roman Empire and the revival of antiquity in his own time. While serving a number of Renaissance popes, he inaugurated an extraordinary program of research into the history, cultural life, and physical remains of the ancient world.

Italy Illuminated (1453), of which this is the second and final volume, is a topographical work describing Italy region by region. Its aim is to explore the Roman roots of modern Italy. As such, it is the quintessential work of Renaissance antiquarianism.

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Italy Illuminated
Biondo FlavioEdited and translated by Jeffrey A. White
Harvard University Press, 2005
Biondo Flavio (1392-1463), humanist and historian, was a pioneering figure in the Renaissance recovery of classical antiquity. While serving a number of the Renaissance popes, he inaugurated an extraordinary program of research into the history, institutions, cultural life, and physical remains of the ancient Roman empire. The Italia Illustrata (1453), which appears here for the first time in English, is a topographical work describing Italy region by region. Its aim is to explore the Roman roots of the Renaissance world. As such, it is the quintessential work of Renaissance antiquarianism. This is the first edition of the Latin text since 1559.
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Journalistic Autonomy
The Genealogy of a Concept
Henrik Örnebring
University of Missouri Press, 2022
Winner, 2023 AEJMC Tankard Book Award

The idea that journalism should be independent is foundational to its contemporary understandings and its role in democracy. But from what, exactly, should journalism be independent? This book traces the genealogy of the idea of journalistic autonomy, from the press freedom debates of the 17th century up to the digital, networked world of the 21st. Using an eclectic and thought-provoking theoretical framework that draws upon Friedrich Nietzsche, feminist philosophy, and theoretical biology, the authors analyze the deeper meanings and uses of the terms independence and autonomy in journalism.
 
This work tackles, in turn, questions of journalism’s independence from the state, politics, the market, sources, the workplace, the audience, technology, and algorithms. Using broad historical strokes as well as detailed historical case studies, the authors argue that autonomy can only be meaningful if it has a purpose. Unfortunately, for large parts of journalism’s history this purpose has been the maintenance of a societal status quo and the exclusion of large groups of the population from the democratic polity. “Independence,” far from being a shining ideal to which all journalists must aspire, has instead often been used to mask the very dependencies that lie at the heart of journalism. The authors posit, however, that by learning the lessons of history and embracing a purpose fit for the needs of the 21st century world, journalism might reclaim its autonomy and redeem its exclusionary uses of independence.

 
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Judaism
The Genealogy of a Modern Notion
Boyarin, Daniel
Rutgers University Press, 2019
Judaism makes the bold argument that the very concept of a religion of ‘Judaism’ is an invention of the Christian church. The intellectual journey of world-renowned Talmud scholar Daniel Boyarin, this book will change the study of “Judaism”—an essential key word in Jewish Studies—as we understand it today. Boyarin argues that although the world treats the word “Judaism” as appropriate for naming an alleged religion of the Jews, it is in fact a Christian theological concept only adopted by Jews with the coming of modernity and the adoption of Christian languages.    
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Kaleidoscope
Redrawing an American Family Tree
Margaret Jones Bolsterli
University of Arkansas Press, 2015
In 2005 Margaret Jones Bolsterli learned that her great-great-grandfather was a free mulatto named Jordan Chavis, who owned an antebellum plantation near Vicksburg, Mississippi. The news was a shock; Bolsterli had heard about the plantation in family stories told during her Arkansas Delta childhood, but Chavis’s name and race had never been mentioned. With further exploration Bolsterli found that when Chavis’s children crossed the Mississippi River between 1859 and 1875 for exile in Arkansas, they passed into the white world, leaving the family’s racial history completely behind.

Kaleidoscope is the story of this discovery, and it is the story, too, of the rise and fall of the Chavis fortunes in Mississippi, from the family’s first appearance on a frontier farm in 1829 to ownership of over a thousand acres and the slaves to work them by 1860. Bolsterli learns that in the 1850s, when all free colored people were ordered to leave Mississippi or be enslaved, Jordan Chavis’s white neighbors successfully petitioned the legislature to allow him to remain, unmolested, even as three of his sons and a daughter moved to Arkansas and Illinois. She learns about the agility with which the old man balanced on a tightrope over chaos to survive the war and then take advantage of the opportunities of newly awarded citizenship during Reconstruction. The story ends with the family’s loss of everything in the 1870s, after one of the exiled sons returns to Mississippi to serve in the Reconstruction legislature and a grandson attempts unsuccessfully to retain possession of the land. In Kaleidoscope, long-silenced truths are revealed, inviting questions about how attitudes toward race might have been different in the family and in America if the truth about this situation and thousands of others like it could have been told before.
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Localization and Its Discontents
A Genealogy of Psychoanalysis and the Neuro Disciplines
Katja Guenther
University of Chicago Press, 2015
Psychoanalysis and neurological medicine have promoted contrasting and seemingly irreconcilable notions of the modern self. Since Freud, psychoanalysts have relied on the spoken word in a therapeutic practice that has revolutionized our understanding of the mind. Neurologists and neurosurgeons, meanwhile, have used material apparatus—the scalpel, the electrode—to probe the workings of the nervous system, and in so doing have radically reshaped our understanding of the brain. Both operate in vastly different institutional and cultural contexts.

Given these differences, it is remarkable that both fields found resources for their development in the same tradition of late nineteenth-century German medicine: neuropsychiatry. In Localization and Its Discontents, Katja Guenther investigates the significance of this common history, drawing on extensive archival research in seven countries, institutional analysis, and close examination of the practical conditions of scientific and clinical work. Her remarkable accomplishment not only reframes the history of psychoanalysis and the neuro disciplines, but also offers us new ways of thinking about their future.
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Moctezuma's Children
Aztec Royalty under Spanish Rule, 1520–1700
By Donald E. Chipman
University of Texas Press, 2005

Though the Aztec Empire fell to Spain in 1521, three principal heirs of the last emperor, Moctezuma II, survived the conquest and were later acknowledged by the Spanish victors as reyes naturales (natural kings or monarchs) who possessed certain inalienable rights as Indian royalty. For their part, the descendants of Moctezuma II used Spanish law and customs to maintain and enhance their status throughout the colonial period, achieving titles of knighthood and nobility in Mexico and Spain. So respected were they that a Moctezuma descendant by marriage became Viceroy of New Spain (colonial Mexico's highest governmental office) in 1696.

This authoritative history follows the fortunes of the principal heirs of Moctezuma II across nearly two centuries. Drawing on extensive research in both Mexican and Spanish archives, Donald E. Chipman shows how daughters Isabel and Mariana and son Pedro and their offspring used lawsuits, strategic marriages, and political maneuvers and alliances to gain pensions, rights of entailment, admission to military orders, and titles of nobility from the Spanish government. Chipman also discusses how the Moctezuma family history illuminates several larger issues in colonial Latin American history, including women's status and opportunities and trans-Atlantic relations between Spain and its New World colonies.

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Old Burial Grounds of New Jersey
A Guide
Janice Kohl Sarapin
Rutgers University Press, 1994
This illustrated guidebook to New Jersey's old burial grounds is unique, not just for New Jersey, but for anywhere in America. Janice Kohl Sarapin introduces you to the history and lore of old graveyards. She shows you how to read epitaphs, how to date gravestones by style, how to restore an abandoned graveyard, and how to find out the stories of the people buried there. She describes more than 120 fascinating old burial grounds throughout the state (including the cemeteries of African-Americans, Jewish communities, and other ethnic and religious groups). She provides full directions and details about what makes each one special as well as suggestions for planning your visit and for educational activities to use with children and adults.
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Origins of New Mexico Families
A Genealogy of the Spanish Colonial Period
Fray Angélico Chávez
Museum of New Mexico Press, 1992
This classic genealogy reference book is considered to be the starting place for anyone having family history ties to New Mexico, and for those interested in the history of New Mexico. Well before Jamestown and the Pilgrims, New Mexico was settled continuously beginning in 1598 by Spaniards whose descendants still make up a major portion of the population of New Mexico.
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The Otherness of Self
A Genealogy of Self in Contemporary China
Xin Liu
University of Michigan Press, 2002
An exploration of the conflict between traditional Chinese ideology and modern Chinese business practice
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Panic Diaries
A Genealogy of Panic Disorder
Jackie Orr
Duke University Press, 2006
Part cultural history, part sociological critique, and part literary performance, Panic Diaries explores the technological and social construction of individual and collective panic. Jackie Orr looks at instances of panic and its “cures” in the twentieth-century United States: from the mass hysteria following the 1938 radio broadcast of H. G. Wells’s War of the Worlds to an individual woman swallowing a pill to control the “panic disorder” officially recognized by the American Psychiatric Association in 1980. Against a backdrop of Cold War anxieties over atomic attack, Orr highlights the entanglements of knowledge and power in efforts to reconceive panic and its prevention as problems in communication and information feedback. Throughout, she reveals the shifting techniques of power and social engineering underlying the ways that scientific and social scientific discourses—including crowd psychology, Cold War cybernetics, and contemporary psychiatry—have rendered panic an object of technoscientific management.

Orr, who has experienced panic attacks herself, kept a diary of her participation as a research subject in clinical trials for the Upjohn Company’s anti-anxiety drug Xanax. This “panic diary” grounds her study and suggests the complexity of her desire to track the diffusion and regulation of panic in U.S. society. Orr’s historical research, theoretical reflections, and biographical narrative combine in this remarkable and compelling genealogy, which documents the manipulation of panic by the media, the social sciences and psychiatry, the U.S. military and government, and transnational drug companies.

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The Patricians of Nishapur
A Study in Medieval Islamic Sockal History
Richard W. Bulliet
Harvard University Press, 1972

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Power in the Blood
A Family Narrative
Linda Tate
Ohio University Press, 2009

Power in the Blood: A Family Narrative traces Linda Tate’s journey to rediscover the Cherokee-Appalachian branch of her family and provides an unflinching examination of the poverty, discrimination, and family violence that marked their lives. In her search for the truth of her own past, Tate scoured archives, libraries, and courthouses throughout Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Illinois, and Missouri, visited numerous cemeteries, and combed through census records, marriage records, court cases, local histories, old maps, and photographs. As she began to locate distant relatives — fifth, sixth, seventh cousins, all descended from her great-greatgrandmother Louisiana — they gathered in kitchens and living rooms, held family reunions, and swapped stories. A past that had long been buried slowly came to light as family members shared the pieces of the family’s tale that had been passed along to them.

Power in the Blood is a dramatic family history that reads like a novel, as Tate’s compelling narrative reveals one mystery after another. Innovative and groundbreaking in its approach to research and storytelling, Power in the Blood shows that exploring a family story can enhance understanding of history, life, and culture and that honest examination of the past can lead to healing and liberation in the present.

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Radical Origins
Early Mormon Converts and Their Colonial Ancestors
Val D. Rust
University of Illinois Press, 2004
Val D. Rust's Radical Origins investigates whether the unconventional religious beliefs of their colonial ancestors predisposed early Mormon converts to embrace the (radical( message of Joseph Smith Jr. and his new church.
 
Utilizing a unique set of meticulously compiled genealogical data, Rust uncovers the ancestors of early church members throughout what we understand as the radical segment of the Protestant Reformation. Coming from backgrounds in the Antinomians, Seekers, Anabaptists, Quakers, and the Family of Love, many colonial ancestors of the church(s early members had been ostracized from their communities.  Expelled from the Massachusetts Bay Colony, some were whipped, mutilated, or even hanged for their beliefs.
 
Rust shows how family traditions can be passed down through the generations, and can ultimately shape the outlook of future generations. This, he argues, extends the historical role of Mormons by giving their early story significant implications for understanding the larger context of American colonial history. Featuring a provocative thesis and stunning original research, Radical Origins is a remarkable contribution to our understanding of religion in the development of American culture and the field of Mormon history.
 
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Reactionary Mathematics
A Genealogy of Purity
Massimo Mazzotti
University of Chicago Press, 2023
A forgotten episode of mathematical resistance reveals the rise of modern mathematics and its cornerstone, mathematical purity, as political phenomena.
 
The nineteenth century opened with a major shift in European mathematics, and in the Kingdom of Naples, this occurred earlier than elsewhere. Between 1790 and 1830 its leading scientific institutions rejected as untrustworthy the “very modern mathematics” of French analysis and in its place consolidated, legitimated, and put to work a different mathematical culture. The Neapolitan mathematical resistance was a complete reorientation of mathematical practice. Over the unrestricted manipulation and application of algebraic algorithms, Neapolitan mathematicians called for a return to Greek-style geometry and the preeminence of pure mathematics.
 
For all their apparent backwardness, Massimo Mazzotti explains, they were arguing for what would become crucial features of modern mathematics: its voluntary restriction through a new kind of rigor and discipline, and the complete disconnection of mathematical truth from the empirical world—in other words, its purity. The Neapolitans, Mazzotti argues, were reacting to the widespread use of mathematical analysis in social and political arguments: theirs was a reactionary mathematics that aimed to technically refute the revolutionary mathematics of the Jacobins. During the Restoration, the expert groups in the service of the modern administrative state reaffirmed the role of pure mathematics as the foundation of a newly rigorous mathematics, which was now conceived as a neutral tool for modernization. What Mazzotti’s penetrating history shows us in vivid detail is that producing mathematical knowledge was equally about producing certain forms of social, political, and economic order.
 
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Reading Inca History
Catherine Julien
University of Iowa Press, 2002
At the heart of this book is the controversy over whether Inca history can and should be read as history. Did the Incas narrate a true reflection of their past, and did the Spaniards capture these narratives in a way that can be meaningfully reconstructed? In Reading Inca History,Catherine Julien finds that the Incas did indeed create detectable life histories.

The two historical genres that contributed most to sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Spanish narratives about the Incas were an official account of Inca dynastic genealogy and a series of life histories of Inca rulers. Rather than take for granted that there was an Inca historical consciousness, Julien begins by establishing an Inca purpose for keeping this dynastic genealogy. She then compares Spanish narratives of the Inca past to identify the structure of underlying Inca genres and establish the dependency on oral sources. Once the genealogical genre can be identified, the life histories can also be detected.

By carefully studying the composition of Spanish narratives and their underlying sources, Julien provides an informed and convincing reading of these complex texts. By disentangling the sources of their meaning, she reaches across time, language, and cultural barriers to achieve a rewarding understanding of the dynamics of Inca and colonial political history.
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Representative Democracy
Principles and Genealogy
Nadia Urbinati
University of Chicago Press, 2006
It is usually held that representative government is not strictly democratic, since it does not allow the people themselves to directly make decisions. But here, taking as her guide Thomas Paine’s subversive view that “Athens, by representation, would have surpassed her own democracy,” Nadia Urbinati challenges this accepted wisdom, arguing that political representation deserves to be regarded as a fully legitimate mode of democratic decision making—and not just a pragmatic second choice when direct democracy is not possible.
As Urbinati shows, the idea that representation is incompatible with democracy stems from our modern concept of sovereignty, which identifies politics with a decision maker’s direct physical presence and the immediate act of the will. She goes on to contend that a democratic theory of representation can and should go beyond these identifications. Political representation, she demonstrates, is ultimately grounded in a continuum of influence and power created by political judgment, as well as the way presence through ideas and speech links society with representative institutions. Deftly integrating the ideas of such thinkers as Rousseau, Kant, Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès, Paine, and the Marquis de Condorcet with her own, Urbinati constructs a thought-provoking alternative vision of democracy.
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Returning the Gaze
A Genealogy of Black Film Criticism, 1909–1949
Anna Everett
Duke University Press, 2001
In Returning the Gaze Anna Everett revises American film history by recuperating the extensive and all-but-forgotten participation of black film critics during the early twentieth century. While much of the existing scholarship on blacks and the cinema focuses on image studies and stereotypical representations, this work excavates a wealth of early critical writing on the cinema by black cultural critics, academics, journalists, poets, writers, and film fans.
Culling black newspapers, magazines, scholarly and political journals, and monographs, Everett has produced an unparalleled investigation of black critical writing on the early cinema during the era of racial segregation in America. Correcting the notion that black critical interest in the cinema began and ended with the well-documented press campaign against D. W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation, she discovers that as early as 1909 black newspapers produced celebratory discourses about the cinema as a much-needed corrective to the predominance of theatrical blackface minstrelsy. She shows how, even before the Birth of a Nation controversy, the black press succeeded in drawing attention to both the callous commercial exploitation of lynching footage and the varied work of black film entrepreneurs. The book also reveals a feast of film commentaries that were produced during the “roaring twenties” and the jazz age by such writers as W.E.B. DuBois, Langston Hughes, and Zora Neale Hurston, as well as additional pieces that were written throughout the Depression and the pre– and post–war periods. Situating this wide-ranging and ideologically complex material in its myriad social, political, economic, and cultural contexts, Everett aims to resuscitate a historical tradition for contemporary black film literature and criticism.
Returning the Gaze will appeal to scholars and students of film, black and ethnic studies, American studies, cultural studies, literature, and journalism.
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The Search for Ancestors
A Swedish-American Family Saga
H. Arnold Barton
Southern Illinois University Press, 1979

A metaphor for the Swedish migration to America in the mid-nineteenth century, the Sven Svensson family, traced here by historian H. Arnold Barton, a descendant, provides a model for genealogical research with which all persons inter­ested in ancestors can identify and from which anyone can learn.

The field of migration history has taken on new importance as a result of accelerating interest in ethnicity and genealogical research. Though a family history, and in a sense an inner voyage of self-discovery, the search for ancestors told here reveals the broader contours of Swedish and American history in the nineteenth century.

The Search for Ancestors is a microanal­ysis of those social, economic, and cultural developments that led to the grad­ual breakup of an ancient way of life in the Swedish countryside and the migra­tion of growing numbers of Swedish peasants across the Atlantic to America.

Barton’s personal odyssey took him to Gowrie, Iowa, the heart of Swedish America, and to the province of Småland in southern Sweden. Research in the Swedish Statistical Central Bureau in Stockholm, contacts with emigration historians in Stockholm, and search in Swedish provincial and national ar­chives, finally gave him the impressive mass of information and statistical data with which to chart his family’s history—over four centuries, back to the 1530s.

A kind of “history with the works showing” or do-it-yourself genealogical kit, the book will be fascinating as well as informative for general readers as well as students of history.

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Slavery in Zion
A Documentary and Genealogical History of Black Lives and Black Servitude in Utah Territory, 1847-1862
Amy Tanner Thiriot
University of Utah Press, 2022
According to an Akan proverb, “It is not wrong to go back for that which you have forgotten.” This belief underlies historian Amy Tanner Thiriot’s work in Slavery in Zion, which combines genealogical and historical research to bring to light events and relationships unknown or misunderstood for well over a century. The total number of enslaved people in Utah’s early history has remained an open question for many years, due in part to the nature of nineteenth-century records, and an exact number is undetermined. But while writing this book Thiriot documented around one hundred enslaved or indentured Black men, women, and children in Utah Territory.
 
Slavery in Zion has two major parts. The first section provides an introductory history, chapters on southern and western experiences, and information on life after emancipation. The second section is a biographical encyclopedia of names, relationships, and events. Although Slavery in Zion contains material applicable to legal history and the history of race and Mormonism, its most important contribution is as an archive of the experiences of Utah’s enslaved Black people, at last making their stories an integral part of the record of Utah and the American West—no longer forgotten or written out of history.
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Taxing Blackness
Free Afromexican Tribute in Bourbon New Spain
Norah L. A. Gharala
University of Alabama Press, 2019
A definitive analysis of the most successful tribute system in the Americas as applied to Afromexicans

During the eighteenth century, hundreds of thousands of free descendants of Africans in Mexico faced a highly specific obligation to the Spanish crown, a tax based on their genealogy and status. This royal tribute symbolized imperial loyalties and social hierarchies. As the number of free people of color soared, this tax became a reliable source of revenue for the crown as well as a signal that colonial officials and ordinary people referenced to define and debate the nature of blackness.

Taxing Blackness: Free Afromexican Tribute in Bourbon New Spain examines the experiences of Afromexicans and this tribute to explore the meanings of race, political loyalty, and legal privileges within the Spanish colonial regime. Norah L. A. Gharala focuses on both the mechanisms officials used to define the status of free people of African descent and the responses of free Afromexicans to these categories and strategies. This study spans the eighteenth century and focuses on a single institution to offer readers a closer look at the place of Afromexican individuals in Bourbon New Spain, which was the most profitable and populous colony of the Spanish Atlantic.

As taxable subjects, many Afromexicans were deeply connected to the colonial regime and ongoing debates about how taxpayers should be defined, whether in terms of reputation or physical appearance. Gharala shows the profound ambivalence, and often hostility, that free people of African descent faced as they navigated a regime that simultaneously labeled them sources of tax revenue and dangerous vagabonds. Some free Afromexicans paid tribute to affirm their belonging and community ties. Others contested what they saw as a shameful imposition that could harm their families for generations. The microhistory includes numerous anecdotes from specific cases and people, bringing their history alive, resulting in a wealth of rural and urban, gender, and family insight.
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Tents, Tigers and the Ringling Brothers
Jerry Apps
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2007
This new addition to the Badger Biography series for young readers features the story of the young Ringling brothers of circus fame. The book tells the inspiring story of the seven sons of German and French immigrants who were guided by their dreams to escape poverty through hard work and ambition. These entrepreneurial brothers moved with their parents to Baraboo, Wisconsin where their fantastic circus adventure began. With no circus experience, the brothers tackled one of the riskiest businesses of the time. Each brother contributed his unique talents to make their enterprise successful. The Ringling Brothers were admired for their technological innovations, strategy and devotion to education. They were also esteemed for their genuine appreciation of their audience.
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Text
The Genealogy of an Antidisciplinary Object
John Mowitt
Duke University Press, 1992
The concept of textuality in recent decades has come to designate a fundamentally contested terrain within a number of academic disciplines. How it came to occupy this position is the subject of John Mowitt's book, a critical genealogy of the social and intellectual conditions that contributed to the emergence of the textual object.
Beginning with the Tel Quel group in France in the sixties and seventies, Mowitt's study details how a certain interdisciplinary crisis prompted academics to rethink the conditions of cultural interpretation. Concentrating on three disciplinary projects—literary analysis, film studies, and musicology—Mowitt shows how textuality's emergence called into question not merely the relations among these disciplines, but also the cultural logic of disciplinary reason as such.
At once an effort to define "the text" and to explore and extend the theory of textuality, this book illustrates why the notion of interdisciplinary research has recently acquired such urgency. At the same time, by emphasizing the genealogical dimension of the textual object, Mowitt raises the issues of its "antidisciplinary" character, and by extension its immediate pertinence for the current debates over multiculturalism and Eurocentrism.
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Ties of Kinship
Genealogy and Dynastic Marriage in Kyivan Rus´
Christian Raffensperger
Harvard University Press

The warp and weft of political and social relationships among the medieval elite were formed by marriages made between royal families. Ties of Kinship establishes a new standard for tracking the dynastic marriages of the ruling family of Rus´—the descendants of Volodimer (Volodimeroviči). Utilizing a modern scholarly approach and a broad range of primary sources from inside and outside Rus´, Christian Raffensperger has created a fully realized picture of the Volodimeroviči from the tenth through the twelfth centuries and the first comprehensive, scholarly treatment of the subject in English.

Alongside more than twenty-two genealogical charts with accompanying bibliographic information, this work presents an analysis of the Volodimeroviči dynastic marriages with modern interpretations and historical contextualization that highlights the importance of Rus´ in a medieval European framework. This study will be used by Slavists, Byzantinists, and West European medievalists as the new baseline for research on the Volodimeroviči and their complex web of relationships with the world beyond.

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Trauma
A Genealogy
Ruth Leys
University of Chicago Press, 2000
Psychic trauma is one of the most frequently invoked ideas in the behavioral sciences and the humanities today. Yet bitter disputes have marked the discussion of trauma ever since it first became an issue in the 1870s, growing even more heated in recent years following official recognition of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

In a book that is bound to ignite controversy, Ruth Leys investigates the history of the concept of trauma. She explores the emergence of multiple personality disorder, Freud's approaches to trauma, medical responses to shellshock and combat fatigue, Sándor Ferenczi's revisions of psychoanalysis, and the mutually reinforcing, often problematic work of certain contemporary neurobiological and postmodernist theorists. Leys argues that the concept of trauma has always been fundamentally unstable, oscillating uncontrollably between two competing models, each of which tends at its limit to collapse into the other.

A powerfully argued work of intellectual history, Trauma will rewrite the terms of future discussion of its subject.
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The Travails of Conscience
The Arnauld Family and the Ancien Régime
Alexander Sedgwick
Harvard University Press, 1998

Like the Bouthilliers, the Colberts, the Fouquets, and the Letelliers, the Arnauld family rose to prominence at the end of the sixteenth century by attaching themselves to the king. Their power and influence depended upon absolute loyalty and obedience to the sovereign whose own power they sought to enhance. Dictates of conscience, however, brought all that to an end and put them in conflict with both king and pope. As a result of the religious conversion of Angélique Arnauld early in the seventeenth century, the family eventually adopted a set of religious principles that appeared Calvinist to some ecclesiastical authorities. These "Jansenist" principles were condemned by the papacy and Louis XIV.

The travails of conscience experienced by the Arnauld family, and the resulting religious schism that separated different branches, divided husbands from wives and parents from children. However, neither the historic achievements of individual family members nor the differences of opinion between them could obscure the sense of family solidarity.

The dramatic appeal of this book is underscored by a tumultuous period in French history which coincides with and punctuates the Arnauld family's struggle with the world. We see how this extraordinary family reacted to momentous political and religious developments, as well as the ways in which individual members, by means of their own convictions, helped shape the history of their time.

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Unreal Houses
Character, Gender, and Genealogy in the Tale of Genji
Edith Sarra
Harvard University Press, 2020

The Tale of Genji (ca. 1008), by noblewoman Murasaki Shikibu, is known for its sophisticated renderings of fictional characters’ minds and its critical perspectives on the lives of the aristocracy of eleventh-century Japan. Unreal Houses radically rethinks the Genji by focusing on the figure of the house. Edith Sarra examines the narrative’s fictionalized images of aristocratic mansions and its representation of the people who inhabit them, exploring how key characters in the Genji think about houses in both the architectural and genealogical sense of the word.

Through close readings of the Genji and other Heian narratives, Unreal Houses elucidates the literary fabrication of social, architectural, and affective spaces and shows how the figure of the house contributes to the structuring of narrative sequences and the expression of relational nuances among fictional characters. Combining literary analysis with the history of gender, marriage, and the built environment, Sarra opens new perspectives on the architectonics of the Genji and the feminine milieu that midwifed what some have called the world’s first novel.

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Virtue, Fortune, and Faith
A Genealogy of Finance
Marieke de Goede
University of Minnesota Press, 2005
Less than two centuries ago finance - today viewed as the center of economic necessity and epitome of scientific respectability - stood condemned as disreputable fraud. How this change in status came about, and what it reveals about the nature of finance, is the story told in Virtue, Fortune, and Faith. A unique cultural history of modern financial markets from the early eighteenth century to the present day, the book offers a genealogical reading of the historical insecurities, debates, and controversies that had to be purged from nascent credit practices in order to produce the image of today's coherent and - largely - rational global financial sphere. Marieke de Goede discusses moral, religious, and political transformations that have slowly naturalized the domain of finance. Using a deft integration of feminist and poststructuralist approaches, her book demonstrates that finance - not just its rules of personal engagement, but also its statistics, formulas, instruments, and institutions - is a profoundly cultural and politically contingent practice. When closely examined, the history of finance is one of colonial conquest, sexual imagination, constructions of time, and discourses of legitimate (or illegitimate) profit making. Regardless, this history has had a far-reaching impact on the development of the modern international financial institutions that act as the stewards of the world's economic resources. De Goede explores the political contestations over ideas of time and money; the gendered discourse of credit and credibility; differences among gambling, finance, and speculation; debates over the proper definition of the free market; the meaning of financial crisis; and the morality of speculation. In an era when financial practices are pronounced too specialized for broad-based public, democratic debate, Virtue, Fortune, and Faith questions assumptions about international finance's unchallenged position and effectively exposes its ambiguous scientific authority.
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We Got By
A Black Family’s Journey in the Heartland
Ric S. Sheffield
The Ohio State University Press, 2022
Life along the color line in rural Ohio was hard. Being Black often meant feeling frightened and alone. For a family like Ric S. Sheffield’s, examining this reality closely meant confronting challenges and tragedies that often felt overwhelming, even as their odyssey also included the joyful and inspiring. Navigating day-to-day existence in a world where trusting white neighbors required a careful mixture of caution and faith, Sheffield and his kin existed in a space where they were both seen and unseen. 
 
Spanning four generations and assessing the legacies of traumatic events (arrests, murders, suicide) that are inextricable from the racial dynamics of the small community his family called home, this gripping memoir is a heartfelt, clear-eyed, and rare chronicle of Black life in the rural Midwest. Experiencing the burden of racism among people who refused to accept that such a thing existed only made the isolation feel that much worse to Sheffield and his relatives. And yet, they overcame the obstacles and managed to persist: they got by.
 
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What is Family Law?
A Genealogy
Janet Halley
Harvard University Press

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Wills from Late Medieval Venetian Crete, 1312–1420
Sally McKee
Harvard University Press, 1998

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Working Fictions
A Genealogy of the Victorian Novel
Carolyn Lesjak
Duke University Press, 2006
Working Fictions takes as its point of departure the common and painful truth that the vast majority of human beings toil for a wage and rarely for their own enjoyment or satisfaction. In this striking reconceptualization of Victorian literary history, Carolyn Lesjak interrogates the relationship between labor and pleasure, two concepts that were central to the Victorian imagination and the literary output of the era. Through the creation of a new genealogy of the “labor novel,” Lesjak challenges the prevailing assumption about the portrayal of work in Victorian fiction, namely that it disappears with the fall from prominence of the industrial novel. She proposes that the “problematic of labor” persists throughout the nineteenth century and continues to animate texts as diverse as Elizabeth Gaskell’s Mary Barton, George Eliot’s Felix Holt and Daniel Deronda, Charles Dickens’s Great Expectations, and the essays and literary work of William Morris and Oscar Wilde.

Lesjak demonstrates how the ideological work of the literature of the Victorian era, the “golden age of the novel,” revolved around separating the domains of labor and pleasure and emphasizing the latter as the proper realm of literary representation. She reveals how the utopian works of Morris and Wilde grapple with this divide and attempt to imagine new relationships between work and pleasure, relationships that might enable a future in which work is not the antithesis of pleasure. In Working Fictions, Lesjak argues for the contemporary relevance of the “labor novel,” suggesting that within its pages lie resources with which to confront the gulf between work and pleasure that continues to characterize our world today.

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World History - A Genealogy
Private Conversations with World Historians, 1996–2016
Edited by Carolien Stolte and Alicia Schrikker
Leiden University Press, 2017
World History—A Genealogy charts the history of the discipline through twenty-five in-depth conversations with historians whose work has shaped the field of world history in fundamental ways. These conversations, which took place over a period of twenty years for the world history journal Itinerario, cover these historians’ lives, work, and views of the academy in general and the field of world history in particular. An extensive introduction distills the most important developments in the field from these conversations, and sheds light on what these historians have in common, as well as—perhaps more importantly—what separates them.
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