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.

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 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.

On The Rock book cover

On the Rock: The Acropolis Interviews

February 19, 2019
Allyson Vieira, assistant professor of foundations, interviews marble workers laboring on the decades‐long restoration of the Acropolis as she explores the workers’ craft, techniques, training and specific roles in their unique and deeply personal voices. Her book brings together ancient building practices, the teaching of traditional craft, changes in the practice of architectural restoration and the social and class dynamics within the restoration site.
Race book cover

Race (The New Critical Idiom)

February 03, 2019
Alexa Alice Joubin, professor of English, theatre, international affairs and East Asian languages and Cultures, co-authored this new work that draws on culturally and historically diverse materials to examine the intersections of race and gender, whiteness, blackness in a global context and race in South Africa, Israel, India, Europe, the United States, East Asia and Asian America. From Black Lives Matter movements to #MeToo movements, the book close reads a wide array of examples from the Middle Ages to Renaissance to the 20th century.
Partitions: A Transnational History of Twentieth-Century Territorial Separatism

Partitions: A Transnational History of Twentieth-Century Territorial Separatism

January 29, 2019
Arie M. Dubnov, associate professor of history, and Max Ticktin, Chair of Israel Studies, co-edited this first collective history of the concept of partition, the physical division of territory along ethno-religious lines into separate nation-states. The book traces the emergence of partition in the aftermath of the First World War and locates its genealogy in the politics of 20th century empire and decolonization.
Where I Have Never Been

Where I Have Never Been: Migration, Melancholia, and Memory in Asian American Narratives of Return

January 04, 2019
Patricia Chu, professor of English, presents narratives from 100 diasporic Asian American offspring who symbolically “returned” to their ancestral countries. These narratives (including tales of actual returns by Asian American immigrants) depict migration-related melancholia, question official histories and portray Asian diasporic families as flexible and transpacific. She recasts Asian Americans not only as minorities in America, but also as global subjects in narratives of educational exchange, commerce and global migration.
Book Cover: Identity Crisis by John Sides

Identity Crisis: The 2016 Presidential Campaign and the Battle for the Meaning of America

October 30, 2018

John Sides, professor of political science, co-authored this in-depth account of the 2016 presidential election that explains Donald Trump’s victory. Taking readers from the bruising primaries to an election night whose outcome defied the predictions of the pollsters and pundits, he shows how fundamental characteristics of the nation and its politics―the state of the economy, the Obama presidency and the demographics of the political parties―combined with the candidates’ personalities and rhetoric to produce one of the most unexpected presidencies in history.

The Internet Trap book cover

The Internet Trap: How the Digital Economy Builds Monopolies and Undermines Democracy

September 25, 2018
Matthew Hindman, associate professor of media and public affairs, challenges our perceptions of the online economy by shedding light on the stunning rise of digital giants like Google and Facebook who dominate the time we spend online and grab all the profits from the attention economy. He explains why the internet is not the postindustrial technology that has been sold to the public.
Book Cover: Mughal Occidentalism by Natif

Mughal Occidentalism: Artistic Encounters between Europe and Asia at the Courts of India, 1580-1630

August 23, 2018

Mika Natif, assistant professor of art history, elucidates the meaningful and complex ways in which Mughal artists engaged with European art and techniques from the 1580s-1630s. Using visual and textual sources, her book argues that artists repurposed Christian and Renaissance visual idioms to embody themes from classical Persian literature and represent Mughal policy, ideology and dynastic history.

Book cover: The Kingdom of God Has No Borders: A Global History of American Evangelicals

The Kingdom of God Has No Borders: A Global History of American Evangelicals

August 01, 2018

Melani McAlister, professor of American studies and international affairs, offers a daring new perspective on conservative Christianity by focusing on the world outside American borders. In a narrative covering 50 years of evangelical history, she upends much of what we know—or think we know—about American evangelicals. Her case studies examine, for example, how Christian leaders have fought to stem the tide of HIV/AIDS in Africa while also supporting harsh repression of LGBTQ communities.

Soccer Thinking for Management Success: Lessons for Organizations from the World's Game

Soccer Thinking for Management Success: Lessons for Organizations from the World's Game

July 27, 2018

Peter Loge, associate professor of media and public affairs, compares today’s successful organizations to soccer. In both, every player is a specialist and generalist; responsibility on the field is distributed; everyone on the team works for everyone else; and communication among players is constant. He draws on insights from both famous and lesser known leaders who use soccer thinking to succeed in an organizational world that, like the sport, is decentralized and never stops moving.

Naming the Dawn by Adbourahman Waberi

Naming the Dawn

May 15, 2018

Abdourahman A. Waberi, assistant professor of French and Francophone literature, authored a new volume of poetry which is introspective and inquisitive, reflecting a deep spiritual bond—with words, with the history of Islam and its great poets and with the landscapes in which those poets and Waberi himself have walked.

Electoral Rules and Democracy in Latin America

Electoral Rules and Democracy in Latin America

April 26, 2018

Cynthia McClintock, professor of political science and international affairs, provides a rigorous assessment of the implications of runoff rules in presidential elections throughout many Latin America nations. She compares them to plurality rules and demonstrates that, in contrast to early scholarly skepticism about runoffs, they have been positive for democracy in the region.