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.

book cover of China and the World edited by Shambaugh

China and the World

January 30, 2020

Gaston Sigur Professor of Asian Studies, Political Science & International Affairs David Shambaugh edited this comprehensive and timely scholarly assessment of China’s position in all regions of the world, with all major powers and across multiple arenas of international interactions. With commentary by 15 leading international authorities, this volume explores the sources of China's grand strategy, how the past shapes the present and the impact of domestic factors that shape China's external behavior.

Engine of Modernity: The Omnibus and Urban Culture in Nineteenth-Century Paris by Masha Belensky

Engine of Modernity: The Omnibus and Urban Culture in Nineteenth-Century Paris

December 17, 2019

Masha Belenky, associate professor of French, examines the connection between public transportation and popular culture in 19th-century Paris through a focus on the omnibus—a horse-drawn vehicle of urban transport. At the intersection of literary criticism and cultural history, the book argues that the omnibus was a metaphor through which writers and artists explored evolving social dynamics of class and gender, meditated on the meaning of progress and change and reflected on one’s own literary and artistic practices.

Book Cover: U.S. Inspectors General: Truth telling in Turbulent Times

U.S. Inspectors General: Truth telling in Turbulent Times

December 03, 2019

Kathryn Newcomer, professor of public policy and public administration, co-authored this comprehensive, up-to-date examination of how inspectors general have operated in the four decades since Congress established the offices to investigate waste, fraud and mismanagement at federal agencies and to promote efficiency and effectiveness in government programs. Based on in-depth case studies, a survey of inspectors general, and a review of public documents, the book emphasize the "strategic environment" in which inspectors general work and interact with a variety of stakeholders, inside and outside the government.

Book cover: after the Berlin Wall, Memory and the Making of the New Germany, 1989 to the Present

After the Berlin Wall: Memory and the Making of the New Germany, 1989 to the Present

November 30, 2019

Hope M. Harrison, associate professor of history and international affairs, draws on extensive archival sources and interviews to profile key memory activists who have fought to commemorate the history of the Berlin Wall. She examines their role in the creation of a new German national narrative three decades after the fall of the Wall, and traces how global memory of the Wall has impacted German memory policy.

Book Cover: Graphic Narratives about South Asia and South Asian America

Graphic Narratives about South Asia and South Asian America

November 19, 2019

Kavita Daiya, director of the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program, edited this collection which explores the field of Comics Studies in South Asia, illuminating an art form in which there has been a much-documented explosion of recent interest. It brings together a diverse group of scholars from Asia, Europe and North America to examine aesthetics, politics, and ideology in sequential art about South Asia and South Asian America.

"This Mighty Convulsion": Whitman and Melville Write the Civil War book cover

"This Mighty Convulsion": Whitman and Melville Write the Civil War

November 15, 2019

Christopher Sten, professor of English and American literature, co-edited this collection of essays, the first book exclusively devoted to the Civil War writings of Walt Whitman and Herman Melville, arguably the most important poets of the war. This volume adds to recent critical appreciation of the skill and sophistication of these poets; growing recognition of the complexity of their views of the war; and heightened appreciation for the anxieties they harbored about its aftermath.

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?

Ethics of War and Peace in Islam: A Shi‘a View by Mohammad Faghfoory

Ethics of War and Peace in Islam: A Shi‘a View

May 02, 2019

Mohammad Faghfoory, professor of Islamic studies, demonstrates that the Shia perception of war and peace is deeply rooted in the Quran and the Tradition of the Prophet and is defensive in nature. He challenges the views of some Shia jurists of earlier centuries regarding jihad. The first comprehensive study of its kind, it addresses the prevailing situation in the heartland of the Islamic world the Middle East—and the growing tension between regional players and some Western powers, especially the United States.

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.

Pages