The Colgate Scene
March 2008

Books and media
 

Information is provided by publishers, authors, and artists.

Richard Samuels '73
(Cornell University Press)

For the past 60 years, the U.S. government has assumed that Japan's security policies would reinforce American interests in Asia; however, the political and military profile of Asia is changing rapidly, Richard Samuels explains. Korea's nuclear program, China's rise, and the relative decline of U.S. power have commanded strategic review in Tokyo just as these matters have in Washington.
The book begins by tracing the history of Japan's grand strategy — from the Meiji rulers, who recognized the connection between economic success and military advance, to the Konoye consensus that led to Japan's defeat in World War II and the postwar compact with the United States. Samuels shows how the ideological connections across these wars and agreements help explain today's debate. He then explores Japan's recent strategic choices, arguing that Japan will ultimately strike a balance between national strength and national autonomy, a position that will allow it to exist securely without being either too dependent on the United States or too vulnerable to threats from China.
Securing Japan is a definitive assessment of Japanese security policy and its implications for the future of East Asia.

Richard Humphries '74
(Orchid Press)

To the long-suffering Burmese people and particularly for Burma's frontier minorities, the Thai border represents a potential escape from poverty and government repression, and a chance for a better life. Despite the hospitality of many Thai people and the efforts of individuals and nongovernmental organizations involved in support programs, the reality of life in the frontier region rarely matches the dream.
In Frontier Mosaic, Richard Humphries provides first-hand accounts and his own observations of the personalities he encounters, on both sides of the border, as he traverses the length of the Thai-Burma frontier. Readers are introduced en route to the insurgent soldier, the mother, the migrant, and the artist, among many other typical inhabitants. In tales of hope and dashed dreams, certainties and ambiguities, conflict, exploitation, and coexistence, Humphries paints an informative and empathetic picture of life in the region.

David Stradling BA'88, MAT'90
(University of Washington Press)

For more than 200 years, the Catskill Mountains have been repeatedly and dramatically transformed by New York City. In Making Mountains, David Stradling explains the transformation of the Catskills landscape as a collaborative process, one in which local and urban hands, capital, and ideas have come together to shape the mountains and the communities therein. Stradling describes how this collaboration has had environmental, economic, and cultural consequences.

Veronica (O'Donovan) Wolff '89
(Berkley/Penguin Group)

Readers travel to 17th-century Scotland in Veronica Wolff's debut romance novel, which begins with Lily Hamlin realizing that her life isn't as perfect as she once thought. Making a pilgrimage to Scotland, Lily hopes that she can find her place again. But while exploring the Highlands, she discovers an overgrown maze and a strange stone map — and lands in the Lochaber of 1654.

Meanwhile, Ewen, chief of the Clan Cameron, is a busy man who must figure out how to save his people from the brutal redcoats and has time for little else. Having sired an heir, the widowed Ewen has no need — or room — for another romance. Then into his life drops a beautiful stranger with a peculiar accent and no regard for his title. Drawn to each other despite their differences, they both realize that they don't want her to go back to her own time. But with battles brewing between the Camerons, the redcoats, and a rival clan, staying is a gamble with her life.

USA Today bestselling author Sue-Ellen Welfonder says, "An accomplished storyteller, Veronica Wolff is the brightest voice to hit Scottish romance in ages."

Michael G. Langan '91
(Five Star Publishing)

Michael Langan's fast-paced legal mystery assembles a cast of colorful characters, immerses them in the drama of local politics, and adds plenty of humor.

The main character, Nicky Rigopoulos, is a slick personal injury lawyer who sells out his clients to finance his campaign for state court judge in Syracuse, N.Y. When his law partner is murdered hours after quitting as his campaign manager, Nicky finds himself the target of a police investigation.

To make matters worse, his lover won't confirm his alibi, and his estranged wife would rather see him in jail. As he and his iron-woman defense lawyer scramble to muster a legal defense, the murderer strikes again. To clear his already tarnished name, Nicky goes undercover to catch the killer before being caught by the police. His over-the-top undercover routine includes dressing like a Hell's Angel, a suburban cowboy, and a psychotic football fan. Nicky's amateur sleuthing takes him all across central New York and introduces him to an assortment of characters who help him uncover the truth that surprises even the Syracuse police department that is bent on destroying him.

Sean Clive '94
(8/5 Music)

Winner of five Unity Awards at the 8th Annual United Catholic Music and Video Association Awards on Oct. 6, 2007, Sean Clive's third album features strong, sincere vocals ranging from upbeat pop songs to touching ballads. Among the awards, the title track was named song of the year, and Clive won songwriter of the year with producer David C. Smith of Icon Music Studio.

Clive's experience as a liturgical musician influenced such songs as "Remember Me" and "Mary's Song." Other songs were inspired by Clive's personal life, including "I Will Carry You," which poignantly shares the story of his father and brother as they cared for his mother during her fight with cancer.

Jennifer Smith '03
(Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing)

In Jennifer Smith's first work of fiction, the last place Ryan Walsh should be is on a train to Wrigley Field. Ryan should be enduring yet another miserable day of her first year of high school. But, for once, she isn't thinking about what she should be doing. She's not worried about her lack of friends, her suffering math grade, or how it's been five years since she was truly happy. Instead, she's returning to the place her father loved, the stadium where the two of them had spent so many afternoons cheering on their team. And on this — the fifth anniversary of his death — it feels like there's nowhere else in the world she should be.
It's on this day that she meets Nick, the new kid from school who seems to love the Cubs nearly as much as she does. But Nick carries with him a secret that makes Ryan wonder if anyone can escape their past, or believe in the promise of those reassuring words: "Wait 'till next year." Is it too much for Ryan to hope that this year, this season, might be her comeback season?

Luca Caminati
(Bruno Mondadori, Milan)

Orientalismo eretico (Heretical Empiricism) examines the Italian poet, polemicist, and filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini's long relationship with the Third World, which started with his first trip to India, taken with Alberto Moravia and Elsa Morante in December 1960. A glimpse at Pasolini's artistic production reveals an inextinguishable passion for what he called Terzo Mondo (rejecting the notion of "developing countries" as a form of cultural imperialism) that finds expression in the numerous films, reportages, and poetry that deal with non-Western subjects or that have a non-Western location.

This book fills a gap in Italian studies by offering not only a critical reading of Pasolini films, but also a cultural evaluation of Pasolini as one of the first Italian intellectuals to become aware of the cultural and economic changes of late modernity on a global level.

Caminati is assistant professor of Italian. He is revising an expanded English translation of this book for publication in the United States.
Jay R. Mandle
(Cambridge University Press)

Because political campaigns in the United States are privately funded, America's political system is heavily biased toward the interests of wealthy campaign contributors, according to Jay Mandle in his new book. As a result, government policies have largely ignored the growth in income inequality caused by technological change and economic globalization, he says. In Democracy, America, and the Age of Globalization, Mandle explains that Americans' skepticism of the government and its political policy must be overcome before effective programs to offset mounting inequality can be implemented. A voluntary system of public funding of candidates for office is required, he argues, to generate the trust in the public sector necessary to reverse the trend toward inequality.

Mandle is W. Bradford Wiley Professor of economics.
Also of note:

A Glimpse Into the Past (Xlibris) is a spirited autobiography written by A. Richard Malkin '53 primarily to inform his children and grandchildren about his journey, including his schooling at Williston Academy, Colgate, and Harvard, his unusual military experience, and his 33 years working for IBM. Highlights include his six-week hockey tour in Japan as a junior in college, his position as contracting officer for the U.S. Army Signal Corps, and his travels through Europe and the Far East while working for IBM.

Colgate bestsellers at the Colgate Bookstore
The Memory Keeper's Daughter — Kim Edwards '81
Unlearning to Fly — Jennifer Brice (English)
In An Instant — Bob '83 and Lee '82 Woodruff
Common nonsense — Andy Rooney '42
Taxi! — Graham Hodges (history)
Chuck Close: Self-portrait/Scribble/Etching — published by the Picker Art Gallery
Secrets of a Fire King — Kim Edwards '81
Merle's Door — Ted Kerasote '72
Creating Market Socialism — Carolyn Hsu (sociology)
On the Real Side — Mel Watkins '62 (English)
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