Faculty Books

From the history of race and caste in Latin America to the role of music in religion around the world, Columbian College faculty publish numerous thought-provoking and timely titles every year. Their work has topped bestseller lists, inspired debate and dialogue and received positive reviews from high-profile outlets like the Los Angeles Review of Books and The New York Times.

Out of Stock: The Warehouse in the History of Capitalism Book cover

Out of Stock: The Warehouse in the History of Capitalism

November 07, 2019

Dara Orenstein, associate professor of American studies, delivers an account of perhaps the most generic and underappreciated site in American commerce and industry: the warehouse. She traces the progression from the 19th century’s bonded warehouses to today’s foreign-trade zones and contends that these zones are emblematic of why warehouses have begun to supplant factories in the age of Amazon and Walmart. Drawing from cultural geography, cultural history and political economy, she demonstrates the centrality of warehouses for corporations, workers, cities and empires.

This Land Is Their Land: The Wampanoag Indians, Plymouth Colony, and the Troubled History of Thanksgiving book cover

This Land Is Their Land: The Wampanoag Indians, Plymouth Colony, and the Troubled History of Thanksgiving

November 05, 2019

David J. Silverman, professor of history, the story of the first Thanksgiving , with this new look at the Plymouth colony's founding events, told for the first time with Wampanoag people at the heart of the story. Ahead of the 400th anniversary of the first Thanksgiving, this unsettling history reveals why some modern Native people hold a Day of Mourning on Thanksgiving, a holiday which, Silverman argues, celebrates a myth of colonialism and white proprietorship of the United States.

Book Cover: Language, Identity, and Syrian Political Activism on Social Media by Francesco L. Sinatora

Language, Identity, and Syrian Political Activism on Social Media

September 30, 2019

Francesco L. Sinatora, assistant professor of Arabic, builds on the Bakhtinian concept of linguistic hybridity to conduct a longitudinal analysis of Syrian dissidents’ social media practices between 2009 and 2017. He shows how dissidents have used social media to emerge in the discourse about the Syrian conflict and how language has been used symbolically as a tool of social and political engagement in an increasingly complex sociopolitical context.

Book cover: The Best American Poetry 2019

The Best American Poetry 2019

September 10, 2019

Jane Shore, professor of English, is among the contributors to this annual collection, the leading anthology of contemporary American poetry. Her poem “Who Knows One,” which originally appeared in the New Yorker magazine, was cited in this volume of the year’s most defining, striking and innovative poems and poets.

Book cover of "Women's Leadership Development: Caring Environments and Paths to Transformation" by Gelaye Debebe

Women's Leadership Development: Caring Environments and Paths to Transformation

June 24, 2019

Gelaye Debebe, associate professor of organizational sciences, brings to life an interdisciplinary framework of leadership effectiveness with detailed and illuminating descriptions of four leadership transformations facilitated by care-practices used in a specific leader development program. She tailors her discussion to academics who teach or research leadership, to HR professionals seeking fresh ideas for maximizing the impact of leadership training for women and to anyone with a passion for personal growth and development.

Book cover of "The Emancipation of Evan Walls" by Jeffrey Blount

The Emancipation of Evan Walls

June 15, 2019

Jeffrey Blount, media and public affairs journalist-in-residence and Shapiro Fellow, reflects on race and identity in this novel about a father haunted by the racism and class status imposed on blacks during the 1960s. Caught in a crossfire of hate from whites and his own people, who question whether he is black enough, the protagonist seeks perspective and peace in family.

Book cover of "African Americans & Africa: A New History" by Nemata Amelia Ibitayo Blyden.

African Americans and Africa: A New History

May 28, 2019

Nemata Blyden, associate professor of history and international affairs, presents an introduction to the relationship between African Americans and Africa from the era of slavery to the present, mapping several overlapping diasporas. Investigating questions fundamental to the study of African American history and culture, she asks: What is an “African American” and how does this identity relate to the African continent?

Book cover: the matter of disability, materiality, biopolitics, crip affect

The Matter of Disability

May 01, 2019

David Mitchell, professor of English, co-edited this collection that returns disability to its proper place as an ongoing historical process of corporeal, cognitive and sensory mutation operating in a world of dynamic, even cataclysmic, change. Examining cases from Spider-Man to Of Mice and Men, these essays explore how disability might be imagined as participant in the “complex elaboration of difference,” rather than something gone awry in an otherwise stable process.

Book cover of "Réne Magritte and the Art of Thinking" by Lisa Lipinski

René Magritte and the Art of Thinking

April 26, 2019

Lisa Lipinski, assistant professor of art history, explores the Surrealist artist René Magritte’s paintings as a form of thinking, probing the limits of our perception through ordinary objects rendered with illusionism. She argues that Magritte’s painting is about vision and the act of viewing, of perception itself and the process of how we see and experience things in the world, including paintings as things.

Of Privacy and Power: The Transatlantic Struggle over Freedom and Security

Of Privacy and Power: The Transatlantic Struggle over Freedom and Security

April 02, 2019

Henry Farrell, professor of political science and international affairs, co-authored this investigation of how the United States and the European Union have navigated their differing approaches to freedom and security in the face of issues like global terrorism and growing data networks. The first serious study of how the politics of surveillance has been transformed, it offers a fresh view of the role of information and power in a world of economic interdependence.

Spinoza's Challenge to Jewish Thought: Writings on His Life, Philosophy, and Legacy

Spinoza's Challenge to Jewish Thought: Writings on His Life, Philosophy, and Legacy

March 15, 2019
Daniel Schwartz, associate professor of history, examines the Jewish response to Baruch (Benedict) Spinoza, the controversial 17thcentury philosopher and pioneering biblical critic, who is revered in some circles as the patron saint of secular Jewishness and branded by others as the worst traitor to the Jewish people in modern times. The book presents the development of Spinoza’s posthumous legacy through a mix of genres from philosophical criticism and historical fiction to tributes and diary entries.
Book Cover of Communication: A Post-Discipline by Silvio Waisbord

Communication: A Post-Discipline

March 11, 2019

Silvio Waisbord, professor of media and public affairs, argues that communication studies is a post-discipline and that it is impossible to transcend fragmentation and specialization through a single project of intellectual unity in this important text for scholars, advanced students of communication studies and anyone interested in the state of the field.

Book cover: Developments in Russian Politics 9

Developments in Russian Politics 9

March 01, 2019

Henry E. Hale, professor of political science and international affairs, co-edited and contributed to this collection of essays from international experts discussing contemporary politics in the world’s largest nation. Reflecting the changing nature of Russian politics in a globalizing world and rising tensions with the West, this volume addresses the military, parliamentary politics, the economy, social inequality and media and political communication in the digital age.

Book Cover of Workforce Readiness and the Future of Work by Tara Behrend

Workforce Readiness and the Future of Work

February 26, 2019

Tara S. Behrend, associate professor of industrial-organizational psychology, co-edited this volume of contributions from leading scholars that argues that the large-scale multifaceted efforts required to ensure a reliable and strong supply of talent and skill in the U.S. workforce should be addressed systematically, simultaneously and systemically across disciplines of thought and levels of analysis.

Book Cover of Landfall by Thomas Mallon


February 19, 2019

Thomas Mallon, English Professor Emeritus, completes a trilogy of novels on contemporary American politics with a fictionalized story set during the tumultuous middle of the George W. Bush years—amid the twin catastrophes of the Iraq insurgency and Hurricane Katrina. The cast of characters includes the president’s crafty mother, former First Lady Barbara Bush; his eager-to-please secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice; the manipulative Donald Rumsfeld; and foreign leaders from Tony Blair to Vladimir Putin.