Books At-a-Glance

September 16, 2011 | Salute to Scholars, The University

Here is a collection of new books written by CUNY authors:

El Lector

El Lector: A History of the Cigar Factory Reader
City College and Graduate Center professor of foreign languages Araceli Tinajero
University of Texas Press
The practice of reading aloud has a long history, and the tradition still survives in Cuba as a hard-won right deeply embedded in cigar factory workers’ culture. In El Lector, Tinajero deftly traces the evolution of the reader of newspapers, books and other material from 19th-century Cuba to the present and its eventual dissemination to Tampa and Key West, Fla., Puerto Rico and Mexico. In interviews with present-day and retired readers, she records testimonies that otherwise would have been lost forever, creating a valuable archive for future historians.


High On the Hog

High on the Hog: A Culinary Journey From Africa to America
Queens College professor of English Jessica B. Harris
Bloomsbury USA
Acclaimed cookbook author Harris has spent much of her life researching the food and foodways of the African Diaspora. In High on the Hog, she takes the reader on a harrowing journey from Africa across the Atlantic to America, tracking the trials that the people and the food have undergone along the way. From chitlins and ham hocks to fried chicken and vegan soul, Harris celebrates the delicious and restorative foods of the African-American experience and details how each came to form such an important part of African-American culture, history, and identity.


The Defeat of German U-Boats

The Defeat of the German U-Boats: The Battle of the Atlantic
Queens College Distinguished Professor of History David Syrett
University of South Carolina Press
In The Defeat of the German U-Boats, Syrett explains the significance and the outcome of World War II’s most important naval campaign in the European theater — the air and sea battle that ended Germany’s bid to sever Allied supply lines in the Atlantic. The author’s comprehensive account offers a detailed analysis of the effort to stop German U-boat attacks on Allied merchant vessels, which by 1943 ranked as the Allies’ top priority in their strategy to defeat Hitler’s forces. Syrett argues that the Germans were unable to match Allied communication, technological, and tactical advances and that the Allies prevailed largely because of their skill in utilizing the material and intelligence resources at their disposal.


Modern Migrations

Modern Migrations: Gujarati Indian Networks in New York and London
City College and Graduate Center assistant professor of sociology Maritsa V. Poros
Stanford University Press
Although globalization seems like a recent phenomenon linked to migration, some groups have used social networks to migrate great distances for centuries. To gain insights into migration today, Poros takes a closer look at the historical presence of globalization and how it has organized migration and social networks. With a focus on the lives of Gujarati Indians in New York and London, Poros reveals the inner workings of their social networks and how the networks relate to migration flows. Championing a relational view, she examines which kinds of ties result in dead-end jobs, and which, conversely, lead to economic mobility.


To Broadway, To Life

To Broadway, To Life!
The Musical Theater of Bock and Harnick

Baruch College and Graduate Center professor of music Philip Lambert
Oxford University Press
In 14 years of collaboration, composer Jerry Bock and lyricist Sheldon Harnick wrote seven of Broadway’s most beloved and memorable musicals together, most famously “Fiddler on the Roof” (1964), but also the enduring audience favorite “She Loves Me” (1963), and the Pulitzer-Prize-winning “Fiorello!” (1959). Their musicals have won 18 Tony Awards and continue to capture the imaginations of millions around the world. To Broadway, To Life! is the first complete book about these creative figures, one of Broadway’s most important songwriting teams.


The End of French Rule in Cameroon

The End of French Rule in Cameroon
York College and Graduate Center associate professor of history Martin Atangana
University Press of America
The book is a study of the decolonization movement in Cameroon. It analyzes the reforms introduced by France in Cameroon after World War II, the circumstances surrounding the unsuccessful attempt of the UPC party to seize independence by force, and the subsequent eradication of the UPC by an alliance of Franco-Cameroonian forces. Atangana shows the length that the French were prepared to go in order to leave Cameroon in the hands of a government that would be sympathetic to their interests.


Talking to the Enemy

Talking to the Enemy: Faith, Brotherhood, and the (Un)Making of Terrorists
John Jay College associate director of The Center on Terrorism and Presidential Scholar in Sociology Scott Atran
HarperCollins
Atran traces terrorism’s root causes in human evolution and history, touching on the nature of faith, the origins of society, the limits of reason, and the power of moral values. He interviews and investigates Al Qaeda associates and acolytes, including Jemaah Islamiyah, Lashkar-e-Tayibah, and the Madrid train bombers, as well as other non-Qaeda groups, such as Hamas and the Taliban, and their sponsoring communities, from the jungles of Southeast Asia and the political wastelands of the Middle East to New York, London, and Madrid. He corrects misconceptions about suicide bombers and radical Islam, explaining how our tolerance for faith enables extremists to flourish, and shows why atheism and science education have little effect.