front cover of Abacus of Loss
Abacus of Loss
A Memoir in Verse
Sholeh Wolpé
University of Arkansas Press, 2022

Albert Einstein said, “Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.” It is in this vein that Sholeh Wolpé’s mesmerizing memoir in verse unfolds. In this lyrical and candid work, her fifth collection of poems, Wolpé invokes the abacus as an instrument of remembering. Through different countries and cultures, she carries us bead by bead on a journey of loss and triumph, love and exile. In the end, the tally is insight, not numbers, and we arrive at a place where nothing is too small for gratitude.


front cover of Acquisition and Loss of Nationality, Volume 1
Acquisition and Loss of Nationality, Volume 1
Comparative Analyses: Policies and Trends in 15 European Countries
Edited by Rainer Bauböck, Eva Ersboll, Kees Groenendijk, and Harald Waldrauch
Amsterdam University Press, 2006
Acquisition and Loss of Nationality brings together a team of thirty researchers for an in-depth analysis of nationality laws in all fifteen pre-2004 member states of the European Union. Volume One presents detailed comparisons of the citizenship laws of all fifteen nations, while Volume Two contains individual studies of each country's laws. Together, the books are the most comprehensive available resource on the question of European nationality.

front cover of Acquisition and Loss of Nationality, Volume 2
Acquisition and Loss of Nationality, Volume 2
Policies and Trends in 15 European Countries: Country Analyses
Edited by Rainer Bauböck, Eva Ersbøll, Kees Groenendijk, and Harald Waldrauch
Amsterdam University Press, 2006
Acquisition and Loss of Nationality brings together a team of thirty researchers for an in-depth analysis of nationality laws in all fifteen pre-2004 member states of the European Union. Volume One presents detailed comparisons of the citizenship laws of all fifteen nations, while Volume Two contains individual studies of each country's laws. Together, the books are the most comprehensive available resource on the question of European nationality.

front cover of Aesthetics in Grief and Mourning
Aesthetics in Grief and Mourning
Philosophical Reflections on Coping with Loss
Kathleen Marie Higgins
University of Chicago Press, 2024
A philosophical exploration of aesthetic experience during bereavement.

In Aesthetics of Grief and Mourning, philosopher Kathleen Marie Higgins reflects on the ways that aesthetics aids people experiencing loss. Some practices related to bereavement, such as funerals, are scripted, but many others are recursive, improvisational, mundane—telling stories, listening to music, and reflecting on art or literature. Higgins shows how these grounding, aesthetic practices can ease the disorienting effects of loss, shedding new light on the importance of aesthetics for personal and communal flourishing.

front cover of Aging and Loss
Aging and Loss
Mourning and Maturity in Contemporary Japan
Danely, Jason
Rutgers University Press, 2015
By 2030, over 30% of the Japanese population will be 65 or older, foreshadowing the demographic changes occurring elsewhere in Asia and around the world.  What can we learn from a study of the aging population of Japan and how can these findings inform a path forward for the elderly, their families, and for policy makers?

Based on nearly a decade of research, Aging and Loss examines how the landscape of aging is felt, understood, and embodied by older adults themselves. In detailed portraits, anthropologist Jason Danely delves into the everyday lives of older Japanese adults as they construct narratives through acts of reminiscence, social engagement and ritual practice, and reveals the pervasive cultural aesthetic of loss and of being a burden.
Through first-hand accounts of rituals in homes, cemeteries, and religious centers, Danely argues that what he calls the self-in-suspense can lead to the emergence of creative participation in an economy of care. In everyday rituals for the spirits, older adults exercise agency and reinterpret concerns of social abandonment within a meaningful cultural narrative and, by reimagining themselves and their place in the family through these rituals, older adults in Japan challenge popular attitudes about eldercare. Danely’s discussion of health and long-term care policy, and community welfare organizations, reveal a complex picture of Japan’s aging society. 

front cover of The Archive of Loss
The Archive of Loss
Lively Ruination in Mill Land Mumbai
Maura Finkelstein
Duke University Press, 2019
Mumbai's textile industry is commonly but incorrectly understood to be an extinct relic of the past. In The Archive of Loss Maura Finkelstein examines what it means for textile mill workers—who are assumed not to exist—to live and work during a period of deindustrialization. Finkelstein shows how mills are ethnographic archives of the city where documents, artifacts, and stories exist in the buildings and in the bodies of workers. Workers' pain, illnesses, injuries, and exhaustion narrate industrial decline; the ways in which they live in tenements exist outside and resist the values expounded by modernity; and the rumors and untruths they share about textile worker strikes and a mill fire help them make sense of the industry's survival. In outlining this archive's contents, Finkelstein shows how mills, which she conceptualizes as lively ruins, become a lens through which to challenge, reimagine, and alter ways of thinking about the past, present, and future in Mumbai and beyond.

front cover of Artifacts of Loss
Artifacts of Loss
Crafting Survival in Japanese American Concentration Camps
Dusselier, Jane E
Rutgers University Press, 2008
From 1942 to 1946, as America prepared for war, 120,000 people of Japanese descent were forcibly interned in harsh desert camps across the American west.

In Artifacts of Loss, Jane E. Dusselier looks at the lives of these internees through the lens of their art. These camp-made creations included flowers made with tissue paper and shells, wood carvings of pets left behind, furniture made from discarded apple crates, gardens grown next to their housingùanything to help alleviate the visual deprivation and isolation caused by their circumstances. Their crafts were also central in sustaining, re-forming, and inspiring new relationships. Creating, exhibiting, consuming, living with, and thinking about art became embedded in the everyday patterns of camp life and helped provide internees with sustenance for mental, emotional, and psychic survival.

Dusselier urges her readers to consider these often overlooked folk crafts as meaningful political statements which are significant as material forms of protest and as representations of loss. She concludes briefly with a discussion of other displaced people around the globe today and the ways in which personal and group identity is reflected in similar creative ways.


front cover of Brothers
A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Race
Nico Slate
Temple University Press, 2023

Brothers is Nico Slate’s poignant memoir about Peter Slate, aka XL, a Black rapper and screenwriter whose life was tragically cut short. Nico and Peter shared the same White American mother but had different fathers. Nico’s was White; Peter’s was Black. Growing up in California in the 1980s and 1990s, Nico often forgot about their racial differences until one night in March 1994 when Peter was attacked by a White man in a nightclub in Los Angeles.

Nico began writing Brothers with the hope that investigating the attack would bring him closer to Peter. He could not understand that night, however, without grappling with the many ways race had long separated him from his brother.

This is a memoir of loss—the loss of a life and the loss at the heart of our racial divide—but it is also a memoir of love. The love between Nico and Peter permeates every page of Brothers. This achingly beautiful memoir presents one family’s resilience on the fault lines of race in contemporary America.


front cover of Building Taliesin
Building Taliesin
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Home of Love and Loss
Ron McCrea
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2012
Through letters, memoirs, contemporary documents, and a stunning assemblage of photographs - many of which have never before been published - author Ron McCrea tells the fascinating story of the building of Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin, which would be the architect's principal residence for the rest of his life. Photos taken by Wright's associates show rare views of Taliesin under construction and illustrate Wright's own recollections of the first summer there and the craftsmen who worked on the site.
The book also brings to life Wright’s "kindred spirit," "she for whom Taliesin had first taken form," Mamah Borthwick. Wright and Borthwick had each abandoned their families to be together, causing a scandal that reverberated far beyond Wright's beloved Wisconsin valley. The shocking murder and fire that took place at Taliesin in August 1914 brought this first phase of life at Taliesin to a tragic end.

logo for Harvard University Press
Burying Autumn
Poetry, Friendship, and Loss
Hu Ying
Harvard University Press, 2016

“Autumn wind, autumn rain, fill my heart with sorrow”—these were the last words of Qiu Jin (1875–1907), written before she was beheaded for plotting to overthrow the Qing empire. Eventually, she would be celebrated as a Republican martyr and China’s first feminist, her last words committed to memory by schoolchildren. Yet during her lifetime she was often seen as eccentric, even deviant; in her death, and still more in the forced abandonment of her remains, the authorities had wanted her to disappear into historical oblivion.

Burying Autumn tells the story of the enduring friendship between Qiu Jin and her sworn-sisters Wu Zhiying and Xu Zihua, who braved political persecution to give her a proper burial. Formed amidst social upheaval, their bond found its most poignant expression in Wu and Xu’s mourning for Qiu. The archives of this friendship—letters, poems, biographical sketches, steles, and hand-copied sutra—vividly display how these women understood the concrete experiences of modernity, how they articulated those experiences through traditional art forms, and how their artworks transformed the cultural traditions they invoked even while maintaining deep cultural roots. In enabling Qiu Jin to acquire historical significance, their friendship fulfilled its ultimate socially transformative potential.


front cover of The Color of Loss
The Color of Loss
An Intimate Portrait of New Orleans after Katrina
Photographs and introduction by Dan Burkholder
University of Texas Press, 2008

The devastation of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina has been imprinted in our collective visual memory by thousands of images in the media and books of dramatic photographs by Robert Polidori, Larry Towell, Chris Jordan, Debbie Fleming Caffrey, and others. New Orleanians want the world to see and respond to the destruction of their city and the suffering of its people—and yet so many images of so much destruction threaten a visual and emotional overload that would tempt us to avert our eyes and become numb.

In The Color of Loss, Dan Burkholder presents a powerful new way of seeing the ravaged homes, churches, schools, and businesses of New Orleans. Using an innovative digital photographic technology called high dynamic range (HDR) imaging, in which multiple exposures are artistically blended to bring out details in the shadows and highlights that would be hidden in conventional photographs, he creates images that are almost like paintings in their richness of color and profusion of detail. Far more intense and poetic than purely documentary photographs, Burkholder's images lure viewers to linger over the artifacts of people's lives—a child's red wagon abandoned in a mud-caked room, a molding picture of Jesus—to fully understand the havoc thrust upon the people of New Orleans.

In the deserted, sinisterly beautiful rooms of The Color of Loss, we see how much of the splendor and texture of New Orleans washed away in the flood. This is the hidden truth of Katrina that Dan Burkholder has revealed.


front cover of Companionship in Grief
Companionship in Grief
Love and Loss in the Memoirs of C. S. Lewis, John Bayley, Donald Hall, Joan Didion, and Calvin Trillin
Jeffrey Berman
University of Massachusetts Press, 2010
In Companionship in Grief, Jeffrey Berman focuses on the most life-changing event for many people—the death of a spouse. Some of the most acclaimed memoirs of the past fifty years offer insights into this profound loss: C. S. Lewis's A Grief Observed; John Bayley's three memoirs about Iris Murdoch, including Elegy for Iris; Donald Hall's The Best Day the Worst Day; Joan Didion's best-selling The Year of Magical Thinking; and Calvin Trillin's About Alice. These books explore the nature of spousal bereavement, the importance of caregiving, the role of writing in recovery, and the possibility of falling in love again after a devastating loss. Throughout his study, Berman traces the theme of love and loss in all five memoirists' fictional and nonfictional writings as well as in those of their spouses, who were also accomplished writers. Combining literary studies, grief and bereavement theory, attachment theory, composition studies, and trauma theory, Companionship in Grief will appeal to anyone who has experienced love and loss. Berman's research casts light on five remarkable marriages, showing how autobiographical stories of love and loss can memorialize deceased spouses and offer wisdom and comfort to readers.

front cover of Consumer Attitudes Toward Data Breach Notifications and Loss of Personal Information
Consumer Attitudes Toward Data Breach Notifications and Loss of Personal Information
Lillian Ablon
RAND Corporation, 2016
Although spending on cybersecurity continues to grow, companies, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations are still being breached, and sensitive personal, financial, and health information is still being compromised. This report sets out the results of a study of consumer attitudes toward data breaches, notifications that a breach has occurred, and company responses to such events.

logo for University of Manitoba Press
The Politics of Loss and Survival in Anishinaabe Territory
Brittany Luby
University of Manitoba Press, 2020

front cover of Dead Subjects
Dead Subjects
Toward a Politics of Loss in Latino Studies
Antonio Viego
Duke University Press, 2007
Dead Subjects is an impassioned call for scholars in critical race and ethnic studies to engage with Lacanian psychoanalytic theory. Antonio Viego argues that Lacanian theory has the potential to begin rectifying the deeply flawed way that ethnic and racialized subjects have been conceptualized in North America since the mid-twentieth century. Viego contends that the accounts of human subjectivity that dominate the humanities and social sciences and influence U.S. legal thought derive from American ego psychology. Examining ego psychology in the United States during its formative years following World War II, Viego shows how its distinctly American misinterpretation of Freudian theory was driven by a faith in the possibility of rendering the human subject whole, complete, and transparent. Viego traces how this theory of the subject gained traction in the United States, passing into most forms of North American psychology, law, civil rights discourse, ethnic studies, and the broader culture.

Viego argues that the repeated themes of wholeness, completeness, and transparency with respect to ethnic and racialized subjectivity are fundamentally problematic as these themes ultimately lend themselves to the project of managing and controlling ethnic and racialized subjects by positing them as fully knowable, calculable sums: as dead subjects. He asserts that the refusal of critical race and ethnic studies scholars to read ethnic and racialized subjects in a Lacanian framework—as divided subjects, split in language—contributes to a racist discourse. Focusing on theoretical, historical, and literary work in Latino studies, he mines the implicit connection between Latino studies’ theory of the “border subject” and Lacan’s theory of the “barred subject” in language to argue that Latino studies is poised to craft a critical multiculturalist, anti-racist Lacanian account of subjectivity while adding historical texture and specificity to Lacanian theory.


front cover of The Demise of Diversity
The Demise of Diversity
Loss and Extinction
Josef Reichholf
Haus Publishing, 2009
Maintaining the natural diversity of the countless species on Earth is of fundamental importance for the continued existence of life on this planet. Nevertheless, ecosystems are being destroyed, as the cultivation of land for agriculture, industry and housing is intensified and oceans continue to be exploited. The Demise of Diversity: Loss and Extinction deals with biodiversity on this planet and the vital importance of sustaining it—nothing less than the future of life on Earth.

front cover of Drift Smoke
Drift Smoke
Loss and Renewal in a Land of Fire
David J. Strohmaier
University of Nevada Press, 2009

David Strohmaier’s long career as a firefighter has given him intimate knowledge of wildfire and its complex role in the natural world of the American West. It has also given him rare understanding of the painful losses that are a consequence of fire. Strohmaier addresses our ambivalence about fire and the realities of loss to it—of life, human and animal, of livelihoods, of beloved places. He also examines the process of renewal that is yet another consequence of fire, from the infusion of essential nutrients into the soil, to the sprouting of seeds that depend on fire for germination, to the renewal of species as the land restores itself. Ultimately, according to Strohmaier, living with fire is a matter of choices, of “seeing the connection between loss on a personal scale and loss on a landscape scale: in relationship with persons, and in relationship to and with the land.” We must cultivate a longer perspective, he says, accepting that loss is a part of life and that “humility and empathy and care are not only core virtues between humans but are also essential virtues in our attitudes and actions toward the earth.” Drift Smoke is a powerful and moving meditation on wildfire by someone who has seen it in all its terror and beauty, who has lost colleagues and beloved terrain to its ferocity, and who has also seen the miracle of new life sprouting in the ashes. The debate over the role and control of fire in the West will not soon end, but Strohmaier’s contribution to the debate will help all of us better appreciate both the complexity of the issues and the possibilities of hitherto unconsidered solutions that will allow us to inhabit a place where fire is a natural, and needed, part of life.


front cover of Feeling Backward
Feeling Backward
Loss and the Politics of Queer History
Heather Love
Harvard University Press, 2009

Feeling Backward weighs the costs of the contemporary move to the mainstream in lesbian and gay culture. While the widening tolerance for same-sex marriage and for gay-themed media brings clear benefits, gay assimilation entails other losses--losses that have been hard to identify or mourn, since many aspects of historical gay culture are so closely associated with the pain and shame of the closet.

Feeling Backward makes an effort to value aspects of historical gay experience that now threaten to disappear, branded as embarrassing evidence of the bad old days before Stonewall. It looks at early-twentieth-century queer novels often dismissed as "too depressing" and asks how we might value and reclaim the dark feelings that they represent. Heather Love argues that instead of moving on, we need to look backward and consider how this history continues to affect us in the present.

Through elegant readings of Walter Pater, Willa Cather, Radclyffe Hall, and Sylvia Townsend Warner, and through stimulating engagement with a range of critical sources, Feeling Backward argues for a form of politics attentive to social exclusion and its effects.


front cover of Final Negotiations
Final Negotiations
A Story of Love, Loss, and Chronic Illness
Carolyn Ellis
Temple University Press, 2018
In this revised and expanded edition of Final Negotiations—a personal account of caring for her partner, Gene Weinstein, and then coping with losing him to chronic emphysema— Ellis reflects back on her experiences as a caregiver, focusing on identity, vulnerability, emotions, and the aging process of an engaged academic. Now, decades later, she reconsiders who she was then, and how she has continued to be affected both by these events and by writing about them. She contemplates how she might act, think, and feel if she were going through the caregiving process again, now.

Taking an autoethnographic perspective, Ellis focuses on her feeling and thinking self in relationships, narrating particular lived experiences that offer a gateway into understanding interpersonal and cultural life. In her new epilogue, “From New Endings to New Beginnings,” Ellis describes her changed identity and how Final Negotiations informs her life and her understanding of how she and her current partner grow older together. She hopes her book provides companionship and comfort to readers who also will suffer loss in their lives.

logo for Harvard University Press
Francis Bacon and the Loss of Self
Ernst Van Alphen
Harvard University Press

Since his death in April 12 Francis Bacon has been acclaimed as one of the very greatest of modern painters. Yet most analyses of Bacon actually neutralize his work by discussing it as an existential expression and as the horrifying communication of an isolated individual—which simply transfers the pain in the paintings back to Bacon himself. This study is the first attempt to account for the pain of the viewer.

It is also, most challengingly, an explanation of what Bacon’s art tells us about ourselves as individuals. For, during this very personal investigation, the author comes to realize that the effect of Bacon’s work is founded upon the way that each of us carves our identity, our “self,” from the inchoate evidence of our senses, using the conventions of representation as tools. It is in his warping of these conventions of the senses, rather than in the superficial distortion of his images, that Bacon most radically confronts “art,” and ourselves as individuals.


front cover of Geometry of Grief
Geometry of Grief
Reflections on Mathematics, Loss, and Life
Michael Frame
University of Chicago Press, 2021
In this profound and hopeful book, a mathematician and celebrated teacher shows how mathematics may help all of us—even the math-averse—to understand and cope with grief.
We all know the euphoria of intellectual epiphany—the thrill of sudden understanding. But coupled with that excitement is a sense of loss: a moment of epiphany can never be repeated. In Geometry of Grief, mathematician Michael Frame draws on a career’s worth of insight—including his work with a pioneer of fractal geometry Benoit Mandelbrot—and a gift for rendering the complex accessible as he delves into this twinning of understanding and loss. Grief, Frame reveals, can be a moment of possibility.

Frame investigates grief as a response to an irrevocable change in circumstance. This reframing allows us to see parallels between the loss of a loved one or a career and the loss of the elation of first understanding a tricky concept. From this foundation, Frame builds a geometric model of mental states. An object that is fractal, for example, has symmetry of magnification: magnify a picture of a mountain or a fern leaf—both fractal—and we see echoes of the original shape. Similarly, nested inside great loss are smaller losses. By manipulating this geometry, Frame shows us, we may be able to redirect our thinking in ways that help reduce our pain. Small‐scale losses, in essence, provide laboratories to learn how to meet large-scale losses.

Interweaving original illustrations, clear introductions to advanced topics in geometry, and wisdom gleaned from his own experience with illness and others’ remarkable responses to devastating loss, Frame’s poetic book is a journey through the beautiful complexities of mathematics and life. With both human sympathy and geometrical elegance, it helps us to see how a geometry of grief can open a pathway for bold action.

front cover of The Hardest Journey Home
The Hardest Journey Home
A True Story of Loss and Duty during the Iraq War
Donleigh O. Gaunky
Westholme Publishing, 2017
Pulled Out of a Combat Deployment, the Author Escorted His Younger Brother's Body Home from War 

“Sergeant Donleigh Gaunky’s moving memoir speaks to everyone who has lost a loved one in defense of our great nation. It serves as a reminder that freedom is not free, and it is our responsibility to continue to care for our service members, veterans, and their families. I am touched that Fisher House provided a refuge for Sergeant Gaunky during such a difficult journey.”—Ken Fisher, Chairman and CEO, Fisher House Foundation
“Fewer and fewer Americans have any close association with anyone serving in the Armed Forces. Donleigh Gaunky offers a heart-rending glimpse into his family as he, and they, grapple with the loss of Donleigh’s brother on a battlefield in Iraq. Every American should read this and, in so doing, learn what “Thank You for Your Service” really means.”
Gen. Carter F. Ham, USA, Ret., President and CEO, Association of the United States Army

In November 2005, while analyzing live action reports at his base in Baghdad, Iraq, Donleigh O. Gaunky froze. His younger brother Alex’s unit had been hit by the enemy. Almost immediately, arrangements were made for Donleigh to meet his wounded brother in Germany, but Alex succumbed to his injuries before he arrived. Instead, Donleigh was asked to assume the role of remains escort. Most of the time a remains escort is picked at random from the appropriate branch of service or is someone with a relationship to the deceased, most often from the soldier’s own unit. Rarely—if ever in modern times—is the escort a family member. In The Hardest Journey Home: A True Story of Loss and Duty During the Iraq War, Donleigh O. Gaunky describes the events that unfolded over the course of a few days, from the front line in Iraq to the Landstuhl military hospital in Germany to their small town in Wisconsin, where he arrived with his brother’s body on Thanksgiving Day. In an effort to keep his mind off the tragedy and remain focused on his task, the author describes the proto­col for escorting a body home—paperwork, appropriate attire, the proper use of the flag, when and where to salute—as well as how his divorced parents coped with the loss of one of their four sons serving in the military. Relying on commercial flights to bring Alex home, there was no military reception when they first landed in the United States and the author learned how little his brother’s sacrifice meant on a national level. But he was uplifted by his town’s response to his family’s loss when they unexpectedly lined the streets to pay their respects to one of their own. An important and moving story, The Hardest Journey Home reveals the human cost of a long, seemingly invisible war. 

front cover of Helping Children Live With Death and Loss
Helping Children Live With Death and Loss
Dinah Seibert, Judy C. Drolet, and Joyce V. Fetro. Illustrations by Christine I. Stetter
Southern Illinois University Press, 2003

Helping Children Live with Death and Loss is a practical guide for parents, caregivers, teachers, clergy, funeral directors, and other adults who may interact with young children between the ages of two and ten. Utilizing a developmental approach that is critical for understanding the unique characteristics and needs among children under ten, the volume is enhanced by an accessible style and format, numerous illustrations, and the positive attitude that make it possible for any reader to comprehend and apply the concepts when discussing death and loss with young children.

The scope of concepts ranges from adult self-assessment to knowledge of children’s developmental stages in learning. Building on that foundation, the book provides four basic content areas for teaching, supplies sample questions and answers, and suggests strategies for teaching general death education as well as strategies for responding to a current death or loss. The resource concludes with print and internet sources for adults and children. Helping Children Live with Death and Loss also aids adults and children in improving their communication and coping skills, which are critical for managing loss and preparing for a healthier future.


front cover of Hole in Our Soul
Hole in Our Soul
The Loss of Beauty and Meaning in American Popular Music
Martha Bayles
University of Chicago Press, 1996
From Queen Latifa to Count Basie, Madonna to Monk, Hole in Our Soul: The Loss of Beauty and Meaning in American Popular Music traces popular music back to its roots in jazz, blues, country, and gospel through the rise in rock 'n' roll and the emergence of heavy metal, punk, and rap. Yet despite the vigor and balance of these musical origins, Martha Bayles argues, something has gone seriously wrong, both with the sound of popular music and the sensibility it expresses.

Bayles defends the tough, affirmative spirit of Afro-American music against the strain of artistic modernism she calls 'perverse.' She describes how perverse modernism was grafted onto popular music in the late 1960s, and argues that the result has been a cult of brutality and obscenity that is profoundly anti-musical.

Unlike other recent critics of popular music, Bayles does not blame the problem on commerce. She argues that culture shapes the market and not the other way around. Finding censorship of popular music "both a practical and a constitutional impossibility," Bayles insists that "an informed shift in public tastes may be our only hope of reversing the current malignant mood."

front cover of Home in America
Home in America
On Loss and Retrieval
Thomas Dumm
Harvard University Press, 2019

An extraordinary inquiry into the meaning of home, through explorations literary and political, philosophical and deeply personal, by the acclaimed author of Loneliness as a Way of Life.

Home as an imagined refuge. Home as a place of mastery and domination. Home as a destination and the place we try to escape from. Thomas Dumm explores these distinctively American understandings of home. He takes us from Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and Henry David Thoreau’s Walden to Laura Ingalls Wilder’s little house on the prairie and Emily Dickinson’s homestead, and finally to the house Herman Wallace imagined and that sustained him during his forty-one years of solitary confinement at Angola State Penitentiary.

Dumm argues that it is impossible to separate the comforting and haunting aspects of home. Each chapter reveals a different dimension of the American experience of home: slavery at Monticello, radical individuality at Walden, Indian-hating in the pioneer experience, and the power of remembering and imagining home in extreme confinement as a means of escape. Hidden in these homes are ghosts—enslaved and imprisoned African Americans, displaced and massacred Native Americans, subordinated homemakers, all struggling to compose their lives in a place called home.

Framed by a prologue on Dad and an epilogue on Mom, in which the author reflects on his own experiences growing up in western Pennsylvania with young parents in a family of nine children, Home in America is a masterful meditation on the richness and poverty of an idea that endures in the world we have made.


front cover of Immaterial Archives
Immaterial Archives
An African Diaspora Poetics of Loss
Jenny Sharpe
Northwestern University Press, 2020
In this innovative study, Jenny Sharpe moves beyond the idea of art and literature as an alternative archive to the historical records of slavery and its aftermath. Immaterial Archives explores instead the intangible phenomena of affects, spirits, and dreams that Caribbean artists and writers introduce into existing archives. Through the works of Frantz Zéphirin, Edouard Duval-Carrié, M. NourbeSe Philip, Erna Brodber, and Kamau Brathwaite, Immaterial Archives examines silences as black female spaces, Afro-Creole sacred worlds as diasporic cartographies, and the imaginative conjoining of spirits with industrial technologies as disruptions of enlightened modernity.

front cover of Impermanence
Life and Loss on Superior's South Shore
University of Minnesota Press, 2024

A personal journey through the ever-changing natural and cultural history of Lake Superior’s South Shore

Lake Superior’s South Shore is as malleable as it is enduring, its red sandstone cliffs, clay bluffs, and golden sand beaches reshaped by winds and water from season to season—and sometimes from one hour to the next. Generations of people have inhabited the South Shore, harvesting the forests and fish, mining copper, altering the land for pleasure and profit, for better or worse. In Impermanence, author Sue Leaf explores the natural and human histories that make the South Shore what it is, from the gritty port city of Superior, Wisconsin, to the shipping locks at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. 


For Leaf, what began as a bicycling adventure on the coast of Lake Superior in 1977 turned into a lifelong connection with the area, and her experience, not least as owner of a rustic cabin on a rapidly eroding lakeside cliff, imbues these essays with a passionate sense of place and an abiding curiosity about its past and precarious future. As waves slowly consume the shoreline where her family has spent countless summers, Leaf is forced to confront the complexity of loving a place that all too quickly is being reclaimed by the great lake.


Impermanence is a journey through the South Shore’s story, from the early days of the Anishinaabe and fur traders through the heyday of commercial fishing, lumber camps, and copper mining on the Keweenaw Peninsula to the awakening of the Northland to the perils and consequences of plundering its natural splendor. Noting the geological, ecological, and cultural features of each stop on her tour along the South Shore, Leaf writes about the restoration of the heavily touristed Apostle Islands National Lakeshore to its pristine conditions, even as Lake Superior maintains its allure for ice fishers, kayakers, and long-distance swimmers. She describes efforts to protect the endangered piping plover and to preserve the diverse sand dunes on the Michigan coast, and she observes the slough that supports rare intact wild rice beds central to Anishinaabe culture.


Part memoir, part travelogue, part natural and cultural history, Leaf’s love letter to Lake Superior’s South Shore is an invitation to see this liminal world in all its seasons and guises, to appreciate its ageless, ever-changing wonders and intimate charms.


front cover of Inheritance of Loss
Inheritance of Loss
China, Japan, and the Political Economy of Redemption after Empire
Yukiko Koga
University of Chicago Press, 2016
How do contemporary generations come to terms with losses inflicted by imperialism, colonialism, and war that took place decades ago? How do descendants of perpetrators and victims establish new relations in today’s globalized economy? With Inheritance of Loss, Yukiko Koga approaches these questions through the unique lens of inheritance, focusing on Northeast China, the former site of the Japanese puppet state Manchukuo, where municipal governments now court Japanese as investors and tourists. As China transitions to a market-oriented society, this region is restoring long-neglected colonial-era structures to boost tourism and inviting former colonial industries to create special economic zones, all while inadvertently unearthing chemical weapons abandoned by the Imperial Japanese Army at the end of World War II.
Inheritance of Loss chronicles these sites of colonial inheritance––tourist destinations, corporate zones, and mustard gas exposure sites––to illustrate attempts by ordinary Chinese and Japanese to reckon with their shared yet contested pasts. In her explorations of everyday life, Koga directs us to see how the violence and injustice that occurred after the demise of the Japanese Empire compound the losses that later generations must account for, and inevitably inherit.

front cover of Iowa's Changing Wildlife
Iowa's Changing Wildlife
Three Decades of Gain and Loss
James J. Dinsmore
University of Iowa Press, 2023
Much has changed with Iowa’s wildlife in the years 1990 to 2020. Some species such as Canada goose, wild turkey, and white-tailed deer that once were rare in Iowa are now common, and others like sandhill crane, river otter, and trumpeter swan are becoming increasingly abundant. Iowa’s Changing Wildlife provides an up-to-date, scientifically based summary of changes in the distribution, status, conservation needs, and future prospects of about sixty species of Iowa’s birds and mammals whose populations have increased or decreased in the past three decades. Readers will learn more about familiar species, become acquainted with the status of less familiar species, and find out how many of the species around them have fared during this era of transformation.

front cover of The Last Layer of the Ocean
The Last Layer of the Ocean
Kayaking through Love and Loss on Alaska's Wild Coast
Mary Emerick
Oregon State University Press, 2021
There are five layers of the ocean, though most of us will only ever see one. The deepest layer is the midnight zone, where the only light comes from bioluminescence, created by animals who live there. In order to see, these creatures must create their own light. They move like solitary suns, encased in their own bubbles of freezing water. This is the most remote, unexplored zone on the planet. Though hostile to humans, it’s a source of rapt fascination for Mary Emerick, who would go there in a heartbeat if she could.

The year Emerick turned 38, the suicide of a stranger compelled her to uproot her life and strike out for Alaska, taking a chance on love and home. She learned how to travel in a small yellow kayak along the rugged coast, contending with gales, high seas, and bears. She pondered the different meanings of home from the perspectives of people who were born along Alaska’s coast, the first peoples who had been there for generations, newcomers who chose this place for themselves, and the many who would eventually, inevitably leave. When she married a man from another island, convinced that love would stick, she soon learned that marriage is just as difficult to navigate as the ocean.

Divided into sections detailing the main kayaking strokes, with each stroke serving as metaphor for the lives we all pass through and the tools needed to stay afloat, this eloquent memoir speaks to the human need for connection—connection to place and to our fellow travelers casting their bubbles of light in the depths.

front cover of Last Mountain Dancer
Last Mountain Dancer
Hard-Earned Lessons in Love, Loss, and Honky-Tonk Outlaw Life
Chuck Kinder
West Virginia University Press, 2018

This gonzo-style metamemoir follows Chuck Kinder on a wild tour of the back roads of his home state of West Virginia, where he encounters Mountain State legends like Sid Hatfield, Dagmar, Robert C. Byrd, the Mothman, Chuck Yeager, Soupy Sales, Don Knotts, and Jesco White, the “Dancing Outlaw.”


front cover of Living without the Dead
Living without the Dead
Loss and Redemption in a Jungle Cosmos
Piers Vitebsky
University of Chicago Press, 2017
Just one generation ago, the Sora tribe in India lived in a world populated by the spirits of their dead, who spoke to them through shamans in trance. Every day, they negotiated their wellbeing  in heated arguments or in quiet reflections on their feelings of love, anger, and guilt.
Today, young Sora are rejecting the worldview of their ancestors and switching their allegiance to warring sects of fundamentalist Christianity or Hinduism. Communion with ancestors is banned as sacred sites are demolished, female shamans are replaced by male priests, and debate with the dead gives way to prayer to gods. For some, this shift means liberation from jungle spirits through literacy, employment, and democratic politics; others despair for fear of being forgotten after death.
How can a society abandon one understanding of reality so suddenly and see the world in a totally different way? Over forty years, anthropologist Piers Vitebsky has shared the lives of shamans, pastors, ancestors, gods, policemen, missionaries, and alphabet worshippers, seeking explanations from social theory, psychoanalysis, and theology. Living without the Dead lays bare today’s crisis of indigenous religions and shows how historical reform can bring new fulfillments—but also new torments and uncertainties.
Vitebsky explores the loss of the Sora tradition as one for greater humanity: just as we have been losing our wildernesses, so we have been losing a diverse range of cultural and spiritual possibilities, tribe by tribe. From the award-winning author of The Reindeer People, this is a heartbreaking story of cultural change and the extinction of an irreplaceable world, even while new religious forms come into being to take its place.

front cover of Loss, A Love Story
Loss, A Love Story
Imagined Histories and Brief Encounters
Sophie Ratcliffe
Northwestern University Press, 2024
A journey with the novels that shape our emotions, our romances, and ourselves

Part memoir, part imagined history, this unique personal essay depicts the intimate experience of childhood bereavement, lost love affairs, and the complicated realities of motherhood and marriage. Framed by an extended train journey, author Sophie Ratcliffe turns to the novels, novelists, and heroines who have shaped her emotional and romantic landscapes. She transports us with her to survey the messiness of everyday life, all while reflecting on steam propulsion and pop songs, handbags and honeymoons, Anna Karenina and Anthony Trollope, former lovers and forgotten muses. Frank, funny, tender, and transporting, Loss, A Love Story asks why we fall in, and out, of love—and how we might understand doing so amid the ongoing upheavals and unwritten futures of the twenty-first century.   

front cover of The Loss
The Loss
A Novella and Two Short Stories
Vladimir Makanin
Northwestern University Press, 1998
The novella and two short stories that make up this volume were written at three different periods in Makanin's life, yet they are united by their narrative and stylistic invention, their range of human emotion, and the profound humanity of their prose. Though banished and suppressed in the Brezhnev era, Makanin is now recognized as one of Russia's leading writers.

In his celebrated short story "The Prisoner of the Caucasus," two Russian soldiers take a Chechen prisoner during the war, and as events unfold, Makanin reveals the casual brutality of the war but also the secret truths of the character's lives. In the novella The Loss, Pekalov, a drunkard and dreamer obsessed with the idea of building a tunnel under the Ural River, disappears in a ditch while working and is made a saint by the people of his village. "Klyucharyov and Alimushkin" tells the story of what happens when one man becomes remarkably lucky while the other loses all his luck.

front cover of The Loss and Recovery of Truth
The Loss and Recovery of Truth
Selected Writings of Gerhart Niemeyer
Gerhart Niemeyer
St. Augustine's Press, 2013

front cover of Loss and Redemption at St. Vith
Loss and Redemption at St. Vith
The 7th Armored Division in the Battle of the Bulge
Gregory Fontenot, Colonel, US Army, Retired
University of Missouri Press, 2020
Loss and Redemption at St Vith closes a gap in the record of the Battle of the Bulge by recounting the exploits of the 7th Armored Division in a way that no other study has. Most accounts of the Battle of the Bulge give short-shrift to the interval during which the German forward progress stopped and the American counterattack began. This narrative centers on the 7th Armored Division for the entire length of the campaign, in so doing reconsidering the story of the whole battle through the lens of a single division and accounting for the reconstitution of the Division while in combat.

logo for Harvard University Press
Loss and Restoration of Regenerative Capacity in Tissues and Organs of Animals
L. V. Polezhaev
Harvard University Press
This well-illustrated monograph is the first summary in English of L.V. Polezhaev's important but lesser known work on the regenerative phenomena in mammalian forms, conducted since World War II. During this period Soviet research underwent a pronounced shift in emphasis from basic biological studies based primarily upon amphibians to more practically oriented problems in mammalian systems. Polezhaev's experimentation underwent a corresponding shift, but the focus on restoration of lost regenerative capacity was retained since his earlier work, which is also reviewed here, on limb regeneration in frogs. Following a theoretical discussion, the monograph centers upon the author's most profound innovations: a successful method for producing bone to heal large skull defects, original research on heart regeneration, and trials in the restoration of limb regeneration following X-irradiation.

front cover of Loss and Wonder at the World’s End
Loss and Wonder at the World’s End
Laura A. Ogden
Duke University Press, 2021
In Loss and Wonder at the World's End, Laura A. Ogden brings together animals, people, and things—from beavers, stolen photographs, lichen, American explorers, and birdsong—to catalog the ways environmental change and colonial history are entangled in the Fuegian Archipelago of southernmost Chile and Argentina. Repeated algal blooms have closed fisheries in the archipelago. Glaciers are in retreat. Extractive industries such as commercial forestry, natural gas production, and salmon farming along with the introduction of nonnative species are rapidly transforming assemblages of life. Ogden archives forms of loss—including territory, language, sovereignty, and life itself—as well as forms of wonder, or moments when life continues to flourish even in the ruins of these devastations. Her account draws on long-term ethnographic research with settler and Indigenous communities; archival photographs; explorer journals; and experiments in natural history and performance studies. Loss and Wonder at the World's End frames environmental change as imperialism's shadow, a darkness cast over the earth in the wake of other losses.

front cover of The Loss of Hindustan
The Loss of Hindustan
The Invention of India
Manan Ahmed Asif
Harvard University Press, 2020

Shortlisted for the Cundill History Prize

“Remarkable and pathbreaking…A radical rethink of colonial historiography and a compelling argument for the reassessment of the historical traditions of Hindustan.”
—Mahmood Mamdani

“The brilliance of Asif’s book rests in the way he makes readers think about the name ‘Hindustan’…Asif’s focus is Indian history but it is, at the same time, a lens to look at questions far bigger.”
—Soni Wadhwa, Asian Review of Books

“Remarkable…Asif’s analysis and conclusions are powerful and poignant.”
—Rudrangshu Mukherjee, The Wire

“A tremendous contribution…This is not only a book that you must read, but also one that you must chew over and debate.”
—Audrey Truschke, Current History

Did India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh have a shared regional identity prior to the arrival of Europeans in the late fifteenth century? Manan Ahmed Asif tackles this contentious question by inviting us to reconsider the work and legacy of the influential historian Muhammad Qasim Firishta, a contemporary of the Mughal emperors Akbar and Jahangir. Inspired by his reading of Firishta and other historians, Asif seeks to rescue our understanding of the region from colonial narratives that emphasize difference and division.

Asif argues that a European understanding of India as Hindu has replaced an earlier, native understanding of India as Hindustan, a home for all faiths. Turning to the subcontinent’s medieval past, he uncovers a rich network of historians of Hindustan who imagined, studied, and shaped their kings, cities, and societies. The Loss of Hindustan reveals how multicultural Hindustan was deliberately eclipsed in favor of the religiously partitioned world of today. A magisterial work with far reaching implications, it offers a radical reinterpretation of how India came to its contemporary political identity.


front cover of The Loss of Java
The Loss of Java
The Final Battles for the Possession of Java Fought by Allied Air, Naval and Land Forces in the Period of 18 February - 7 March 1942
P.C. Boer
National University of Singapore Press, 2011
The Loss of Java explains in detail the air, sea and land battles between the Allied and Japanese armed forces during the battle for Java that followed the evacuation of southern Sumatra in February 1942. Little has been written about the allied air campaign, or about why Dutch forces fought just one major land battle with the Japanese, the Battle of the Tjiater Pass, in the later stages of the struggle.
 P.C. Boer considers whether the assessment of Major General Van Oyen that deploying the Allied air forces might prevent Japanese invasion of Java was realistic, and whether reliance on air power limited the capacity of land and naval forces to repel Japan's advances. The generally accepted idea is that the Allies were ineffective in their fight against the Japanese invaders but in fact the Japanese suffered serious losses. Boer's study shows that Dutch strategy grew out of a carefully-devised plan of defense, and that the battle for Java comprised not one (the Battle of the Java Sea) but four major engagements. However, Japanese commanders at various levels consciously took steps that exposed their forces to great risk but succeeded in putting the Allies under great pressure. In the end the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army (KNIL) and the allied forces capitulated on 8 March 1942.
 This book is a translation of Het Verlies Van Java: Een kwestie van Air Power. De eindstrijd om Nederlands-Indie van de geallieerde lucht-, zee- en landstrijdkrschten in de periode van 18 februari t/m 7 maart 1942 (Amsterdam: Bataafsche Leeuw BV for the Koninklijke Militaire Academie, 2006).

front cover of Love and Loss
Love and Loss
The Short Life of Ray Chapman
Scott H. Longert
Ohio University Press, 2024
The son of a coal miner from a small Illinois town, Cleveland Indians shortstop Ray Chapman lived the American dream until his untimely death at age twenty-nine. In his brief life, he reached the pinnacle of baseball success as the best shortstop in the American League. While many professional ballplayers struggled with meager salaries, the handsome Chapman had married heiress Kathleen Daly, one of Cleveland’s wealthiest women. With a child on the way and an executive job in the offseason, Chapman was moving toward a privileged place in society until an errant fastball fractured his skull and ended his life the next day. Late in the 1920 pennant race, the Indians were in New York for a key series against the Yankees. New York pitcher Carl Mays threw a high hard one that Chapman could not evade. He was taken to a nearby hospital, where doctors tried in vain to save his life. The tragedy did not end there. His widow took her own life eight years later, and their daughter, Rae, subsequently died from meningitis. Today, people visit Chapman’s impressive grave in Cleveland’s Lake View Cemetery, leaving baseballs and gloves in his memory. Though gone over a hundred years, he is well remembered as a Cleveland icon. This book goes far beyond the well-worn accounts of Chapman’s untimely death to illustrate the fullness of his short life.

front cover of The Mourning After
The Mourning After
Loss and Longing among Midcentury American Men
John Ibson
University of Chicago Press, 2018
On the battlefields of World War II, with their fellow soldiers as the only shield between life and death, a generation of American men found themselves connecting with each other in new and profound ways. Back home after the war, however, these intimacies faced both scorn and vicious homophobia. The Mourning After makes sense of this cruel irony, telling the story of the unmeasured toll exacted upon generations of male friendships. John Ibson draws evidence from the contrasting views of male closeness depicted in WWII-era fiction by Gore Vidal and John Horne Burns, as well as from such wide-ranging sources as psychiatry texts, child development books, the memoirs of veterans’ children, and a slew of vernacular snapshots of happy male couples. In this sweeping reinterpretation of the postwar years, Ibson argues that a prolonged mourning for tenderness lost lay at the core of midcentury American masculinity, leaving far too many men with an unspoken ache that continued long after the fighting stopped, forever damaging their relationships with their wives, their children, and each other.

front cover of Parenting on the Frontlines
Parenting on the Frontlines
Stories of Love, Loss, and Wonder
Kelly Cooper Paradis
Michigan Publishing Services, 2023

Each day of working parenthood is a rollercoaster of success and failure. My child ate a carrot! Then spit it out on the dog. I got to work on time! But there is a mystery stain on my dress shirt and this Tide stick is definitely making it worse. Also yes, that was “Baby Shark” I was humming while accidentally unmuted on the Zoom call, and no, I am not going to be able to sew an octopus costume from scratch by Friday. Please tell me there is something available at Target. 

As a parent, we live through levels of both joy and sorrow that we didn’t even know existed before. And we wonder—is it only me? Am I alone in this? In Parenting on the Frontlines, we explore both the lighter and heavier sides of working parenthood. The stories shared here are written by healthcare workers at Michigan Medicine, but all caregivers will find pieces to which they can relate. Most importantly, we want you to know that you are not alone on your journey, no matter where it takes you. 


front cover of The Plain Language of Love and Loss
The Plain Language of Love and Loss
A Quaker Memoir
Beth Taylor
University of Missouri Press, 2009
On November 16, 1965, Beth Taylor’s idyllic childhood was shattered at age twelve by the suicide of her older brother Geoff. Raised in an “intentional community” north of Philadelphia—a mix of farm village, hippie commune, and suburb—she and her siblings were instilled with nonconformist values and respect for the Quaker tradition. With the loss of her beloved brother, Taylor began her complicated journey to understand family, loss, and faith.
Written after years of contemplation, The Plain Language of Love and Loss reflects on the meaning of death and loss for three generations of Taylor’s family and their friends. Her compelling portrait of Geoff reveals a boy whose understanding of who he was came under increasing attack. He was harassed by schoolmates for being a “commie pinko coward” and he tried to appease fellow Boy Scouts after he abstained from a support-the-troops rally. Touching on the timely issues of bullying, child rearing, and nonconformity, Taylor offers a rare look at growing up Quaker in the tumultuous 1960s.
Taylor tells how each stage of her life exposed clues to the subtle damage wrought by tragedy, even while it revealed varieties of solace found in friendships, marriage, and parenting. As she struggles to understand the complexities of religious heritage, patriotism, and pacifism, she weaves the story of her own family together with the larger history of Quakers in the Northeast, showing the importance of family values and the impact of religious education.
Beth Taylor says that she learned many things from her childhood, in particular that history is alive—and shapes how we judge ourselves and choose to live our lives. She comes to see that grief can be a mask, a lover, and a teacher.

front cover of Pleasures Taken
Pleasures Taken
Performances of Sexuality and Loss in Victorian Photographs
Carol Mavor
Duke University Press, 1995
An intimate look into three Victorian photo-settings, Pleasures Taken considers questions of loss and sexuality as they are raised by some of the most compelling and often misrepresented photographs of the era: Lewis Carroll’s photographs of young girls; Julia Margaret Cameron’s photographs of Madonnas; and the photographs of Hannah Cullwick, a "maid of all work," who had herself pictured in a range of masquerades, from a blackened chimney sweep to a bare-chested Magdalene. Reading these settings performatively, Carol Mavor shifts the focus toward the subjectivity of these girls and women, and toward herself as a writer.
Mavor’s original approach to these photographs emphatically sees sexuality where it has been previously rendered invisible. She insists that the sexuality of the girls in Carroll’s pictures is not only present, but deserves recognition, respect, and scrutiny. Similarly, she sees in Cameron’s photographs of sensual Madonnas surprising visions of motherhood that outstrip both Victorian and contemporary understandings of the maternal as untouchable and inviolate, without sexuality. Finally she shows how Hannah Cullwick, posing in various masquerades for her secret paramour, emerges as a subject with desires rather than simply a victim of her upper-class partner. Even when confronting the darker areas of these photographs, Mavor perseveres in her insistence on the pleasures taken—by the viewer, the photographer, and often by the model herself—in the act of imagining these sexualities. Inspired by Roland Barthes, and drawing on other theorists such as Julia Kristeva and Luce Irigaray, Mavor creates a text that is at once interdisciplinary, personal, and profoundly pleasurable.

front cover of Politicians Don't Pander
Politicians Don't Pander
Political Manipulation and the Loss of Democratic Responsiveness
Lawrence R. Jacobs and Robert Y. Shapiro
University of Chicago Press, 2000
Public opinion polls are everywhere. Journalists report their results without hesitation, and political activists of all kinds spend millions of dollars on them, fueling the widespread assumption that elected officials "pander" to public opinion—that they tailor their policy decisions to the results of polls.

In this provocative and engagingly written book, the authors argue that the reality is quite the opposite. In fact, when not facing election, contemporary presidents and members of Congress routinely ignore the public's policy preferences and follow their own political philosophies, as well as those of their party's activists, their contributors, and their interest group allies. Politicians devote substantial time, effort, and money to tracking public opinion, not for the purposes of policymaking, but to change public opinion—to determine how to craft their public statements and actions to win support for the policies they and their supporters want.

Taking two recent, dramatic episodes—President Clinton's failed health care reform campaign, and Newt Gingrich's "Contract with America"—as examples, the authors show how both used public opinion research and the media to change the public's mind. Such orchestrated displays help explain the media's preoccupation with political conflict and strategy and, the authors argue, have propelled levels of public distrust and fear of government to record highs.

Revisiting the fundamental premises of representative democracy, this accessible book asks us to reexamine whether our government really responds to the broad public or to the narrower interests and values of certain groups. And with the 2000 campaign season heating up, Politicians Don't Pander could not be more timely.

"'Polling has turned leaders into followers,' laments columnist Marueen Dowd of The New York Times. Well, that's news definitely not fit to print say two academics who have examined the polls and the legislative records of recent presidents to see just how responsive chief executives are to the polls. Their conclusion: not much. . . . In fact, their review and analyses found that public opinion polls on policy appear to have increasingly less, not more, influence on government policies."—Richard Morin, The Washington Post

front cover of Shakespeare and the Legacy of Loss
Shakespeare and the Legacy of Loss
Emily Hodgson Anderson
University of Michigan Press, 2018

How do we recapture, or hold on to, the live performances we most love, and the talented artists and performers we most revere? Shakespeare and the Legacy of Loss tells the story of how 18th-century actors, novelists, and artists, key among them David Garrick, struggled with these questions through their reenactments of Shakespearean plays. For these artists, the resurgence of Shakespeare, a playwright whose works just decades earlier had nearly been erased, represented their own chance for eternal life. Despite the ephemeral nature of performance, Garrick and company would find a way to make Shakespeare, and through him the actor, rise again.

In chapters featuring Othello, Richard III, Hamlet, The Winter’s Tale, and The Merchant of Venice, Emily Hodgson Anderson illuminates how Garrick’s performances of Shakespeare came to offer his contemporaries an alternative and even an antidote to the commemoration associated with the monument, the portrait, and the printed text. The first account to read 18th-century visual and textual references to Shakespeare alongside the performance history of his plays, this innovative study sheds new light on how we experience performance, and why we gravitate toward an art, and artists, we know will disappear.


front cover of Shattering
Food, Politics, and the Loss of Genetic Diversity
Cary Fowler and Pat Mooney
University of Arizona Press, 1990
It was through control of the shattering of wild seeds that humans first domesticated plants. Now control over those very plants threatens to shatter the world's food supply, as loss of genetic diversity sets the stage for widespread hunger.

Large-scale agriculture has come to favor uniformity in food crops. More than 7,000 U.S. apple varieties once grew in American orchards; 6,000 of them are no longer available. Every broccoli variety offered through seed catalogs in 1900 has now disappeared. As the international genetics supply industry absorbs seed companies—with nearly one thousand takeovers since 1970—this trend toward uniformity seems likely to continue; and as third world agriculture is brought in line with international business interests, the gene pools of humanity's most basic foods are threatened.

The consequences are more than culinary. Without the genetic diversity from which farmers traditionally breed for resistance to diseases, crops are more susceptible to the spread of pestilence. Tragedies like the Irish Potato Famine may be thought of today as ancient history; yet the U.S. corn blight of 1970 shows that technologically based agribusiness is a breeding ground for disaster.

Shattering reviews the development of genetic diversity over 10,000 years of human agriculture, then exposes its loss in our lifetime at the hands of political and economic forces. The possibility of crisis is real; this book shows that it may not be too late to avert it.

front cover of The Stages of Memory
The Stages of Memory
Reflections on Memorial Art, Loss, and the Spaces Between
James E. Young
University of Massachusetts Press, 2018
Winner of the 2017 National Council on Public History Book Award
From around the world, whether for New York City's 9/11 Memorial, at exhibits devoted to the arts of Holocaust memory, or throughout Norway's memorial process for the murders at Utøya, James E. Young has been called on to help guide the grief stricken and survivors in how to mark their losses. This poignant, beautifully written collection of essays offers personal and professional considerations of what Young calls the "stages of memory," acts of commemoration that include spontaneous memorials of flowers and candles as well as permanent structures integrated into sites of tragedy. As he traces an arc of memorial forms that spans continents and decades, Young returns to the questions that preoccupy survivors, architects, artists, and writers: How to articulate a void without filling it in? How to formalize irreparable loss without seeming to repair it?

Richly illustrated, the volume is essential reading for those engaged in the processes of public memory and commemoration and for readers concerned about how we remember terrible losses.

front cover of Subject to Death
Subject to Death
Life and Loss in a Buddhist World
Robert Desjarlais
University of Chicago Press, 2016
If any anthropologist living today can illuminate our dim understanding of death’s enigma, it is Robert Desjarlais. With Subject to Death, Desjarlais provides an intimate, philosophical account of death and mourning practices among Hyolmo Buddhists, an ethnically Tibetan Buddhist people from Nepal. He studies the death preparations of the Hyolmo, their specific rituals of grieving, and the practices they use to heal the psychological trauma of loss. Desjarlais’s research marks a major advance in the ethnographic study of death, dying, and grief, one with broad implications. Ethnologically nuanced, beautifully written, and twenty-five years in the making, Subject to Death is an insightful study of how fundamental aspects of human existence—identity, memory, agency, longing, bodiliness—are enacted and eventually dissolved through social and communicative practices.

front cover of Surviving Alex
Surviving Alex
A Mother’s Story of Love, Loss, and Addiction
Patricia A. Roos
Rutgers University Press, 2024
In 2015, Patricia Roos’s twenty-five-year-old son Alex died of a heroin overdose. Turning her grief into action, Roos, a professor of sociology at Rutgers University, began to research the social factors and institutional failures that contributed to his death. Surviving Alex tells her moving story—and outlines the possibilities of a more compassionate and effective approach to addiction treatment.  

Weaving together a personal narrative and a sociological perspective, Surviving Alex movingly describes how even children from “good families” fall prey to addiction, and recounts the hellish toll it takes on families. Drawing from interviews with Alex’s friends, family members, therapists, teachers, and police officers—as well as files from his stays in hospitals, rehab facilities, and jails—Roos paints a compelling portrait of a young man whose life veered between happiness, anxiety, success, and despair. And as she explores how a punitive system failed her son, she calls for a community of action that would improve care for substance users and reduce addiction, realigning public health policy to address the overdose crisis.


front cover of Thinking About Dementia
Thinking About Dementia
Culture, Loss, and the Anthropology of Senility
Leibing, Annette
Rutgers University Press, 2006

Bringing together essays by nineteen respected scholars, this volume approaches dementia from a variety of angles, exploring its historical, psychological, and philosophical implications. The authors employ a cross-cultural perspective that is based on ethnographic fieldwork and focuses on questions of age, mind, voice, self, loss, temporality, memory, and affect.

Taken together, the essays make four important and interrelated contributions to our understanding of the mental status of the elderly. First, cross-cultural data show that the aging process, while biologically influenced, is also culturally constructed. Second, ethnographic reports raise questions about the diagnostic criteria used for defining the elderly as demented. Third, case studies show how a diagnosis affects a patient's treatment in both clinical and familial settings. Finally, the collection highlights the gap that separates current biological understandings of aging from its cultural meanings.

As Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia continue to command an ever-increasing amount of attention in medicine and psychology, this book will be essential reading for anthropologists, social scientists, and health care professionals.


front cover of Trauma Culture
Trauma Culture
The Politics of Terror and Loss in Media and Literature
Kaplan, E. Ann
Rutgers University Press, 2005
It may be said that every trauma is two traumas or ten thousand-depending on the number of people involved. How one experiences and reacts to an event is unique and depends largely on one's direct or indirect positioning, personal psychic history, and individual memories. But equally important to the experience of trauma are the broader political and cultural contexts within which a catastrophe takes place and how it is "managed" by institutional forces, including the media.

In Trauma Culture, E. Ann Kaplan explores the relationship between the impact of trauma on individuals and on entire cultures and nations. Arguing that humans possess a compelling need to draw meaning from personal experience and to communicate what happens to others, she examines the artistic, literary, and cinematic forms that are often used to bridge the individual and collective experience. A number of case studies, including Sigmund Freud's Moses and Monotheism, Marguerite Duras' La Douleur, Sarah Kofman's Rue Ordener, Rue Labat, Alfred Hitchcock's Spellbound, and Tracey Moffatt's Night Cries, reveal how empathy can be fostered without the sensationalistic element that typifies the media.

From World War II to 9/11, this passionate study eloquently navigates the contentious debates surrounding trauma theory and persuasively advocates the responsible sharing and translating of catastrophe.

logo for University of Chicago Press
Trials of Intimacy
Love and Loss in the Beecher-Tilton Scandal
Richard Wightman Fox
University of Chicago Press, 1999
The nation's leading minister stands accused of adultery. He vehemently denies the charge but confesses to being on "the ragged edge of despair." His alleged lover is a woman of mystical faith, nearly "Catholic" in her piety. Her husband, a famous writer, sues the minister for damages. A six-month trial ends inconclusively, but it holds the nation in thrall. It produces gripping drama, scathing cartoons, and soul-searching editorials. Trials of Intimacy is the story of a scandal that shook American culture to the core in the 1870s because the key players were such vaunted moral leaders. In that respect there has never been another case like it—except The Scarlet Letter, to which it was constantly compared.

Henry Ward Beecher was pastor of Brooklyn's Plymouth Church and for many the "representative man" of mid-nineteenth century America. Elizabeth Tilton was the wife of Beecher's longtime intimate friend Theodore. His accusation of "criminal conversation" between Henry and Elizabeth confronted the American public with entirely new dilemmas about religion and intimacy, privacy and publicity, reputation and celebrity. The scandal spotlighted a series of comic and tragic loves and betrayals among these three figures, with a supporting cast that included Victoria Woodhull, Susan B. Anthony, and Elizabeth Cady Stanton.

To readers at the time, the Beecher-Tilton Scandal was an irresistible mystery. Richard Fox puts his readers into that same reverberating story, while offering it as a timeless tale of love, deception, faith, and the confounding indeterminacy of truth. Trials of Intimacy revises our conception of nineteenth-century morals and passions. And it is an American history richly resonant with present-day dramas.

front cover of Urban Movements and Climate Change
Urban Movements and Climate Change
Loss, Damage and Radical Adaptation
Marco Armiero
Amsterdam University Press, 2023
From the social uprisings in Santiago de Chile to the radical municipalism experiments in Naples, this volume takes the reader on an intellectual journey at the frontlines across global South and global North where climate breakdown meets social innovations. While the effects of the climate crisis are becoming more extreme and tangible across the globe with every passing day, urban social movements and their radical strategies to resist climate injustice often remain concealed from sight. Contributors to this volume ask how would it be to look at the politics of urban loss-and-damage not from the highly securitized zones of climate summits, but from favelas in Rio de Janeiro, flood-prone communities in São Paulo, urban gardens in Naples, or neighborhoods resisting climate gentrification in New York City? This book explores diverse worlds and praxis of urban social movements resisting the rising tides of climate crisis and social injustice.

Send via email Share on Facebook Share on Twitter