Exploring Irish Roots in America

The Feast of St. Patrick has its roots in traditional Christian culture in Ireland, and became an official holiday in the 1600s. In modern times, St. Patrick’s Day is more synonymous with green beer and corned beef than religion, but the connection with Ireland remains. Fordham has several titles that highlight Ireland, its culture, its people, and the Irish-American legacy. From Salvatore Basile comes Fifth Avenue Famous, the story of St. Patrick’s Cathedral and its music—a stirring monument to one of the most iconic Catholic churches in America.

For another look at Catholicism in New York City, check out Catholics in New York: Society, Culture, and Politics 1808-1946 edited by Terry Golway. The book, copublished with the Museum of the City of New York, is a synthesis of rare images and essays that study the growth of the city’s largest Christian denomination.

You might also be familiar with New York Times assistant editor, Mark Bulik’s book, The Sons of Molly Maguire: The Irish Roots of America’s First Labor War. Mark explores sensational tales of true-life crime, the devastation of the Irish potato famine, the upheaval of the Civil War, and the turbulent emergence of the American labor movement are connected in a captivating exploration of the roots of the Molly Maguires. A secret society of peasant assassins in Ireland that re-emerged in Pennsylvania’s hard-coal region, the Mollies organized strikes, murdered mine bosses, and fought the Civil War draft. Their shadowy twelve-year duel with all powerful coal companies marked the beginning of class warfare in America. A must read!

 

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The Feast of St. Patrick has its roots in traditional Christian culture in Ireland, and became an official holiday in the 1600s. In modern times, St. Patrick’s Day is more synonymous with green beer and corned beef than religion, but … Full Story

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The Marginalia Review of Books Book Review: Erin Runions’ ‘The Babylon Complex’

Here are some more highlights from the review:

“The book proceeds as a series of forays into the diverse ways in which the image of Babylon interacts with U.S. anxieties surrounding identity and sovereignty. Deeply informed by political theory and cultural studies, Runions unearths how ‘a deep-seated biblical stratum in U.S. culture influences, limits, and enables political policy, expression, and action.’”

“There is something of a vertiginous effect to reading Runions’s work. The sheer volume of political and cultural theory and the chorus of academic theorists discussed in these pages is astonishing (Leo Strauss, Carl Schmitt, Giorgio Agamben, and Michel Foucault would name only the most widely known); her intimacy with film-studies and her firm grasp of hermeneutical theories is impressive. Bringing such thinkers into conversation with broader biblical studies is a challenging undertaking which was well executed throughout the work. On numerous occasions, I sensed that she was genuinely uncovering something real and dangerous about the way a biblical image had (over) influenced American thinking about its larger place and function in the world. Whatever one might believe about poetry, myth does make things happen. Runions careful parsing of the image of Babylon can leave no doubt about such a truth.”

To read Sherman’s review in its entirety, you can find it here.

If you are interested in Erin Runions’ book, The Babylon Complex: Theopolitical Fantasies of War, Sex, and Sovereignty, you can learn more about it on Fordham Press’ website and check out other similar titles.

In The Marginalia Review of Books, Phillip M. Sherman writes about Fordham Press author, Erin Runions’ book, The Babylon Complex:Theopolitical Fantasies of War, Sex, and Sovereignty. In an incredibly detailed review, Sherman gets to work uncovering different aspects of Runions’s book and discovering how the scpriptural myth of Babylon can be used to describe various parts of society and its views in the present day period.
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The Huffington Post Interview: Pamela Lewis of ‘Teaching While Black’

On March 1st, The Huffington Post released an interview with Fordham Press author, Pamela Lewis, whose new book, Teaching While Black: A New Voice on Race and Education in New York City, comes out this month.  The Huffington Post describes Lewis as not like most of your fellow teachers.  Why is that? It is because “Lewis is black. She’s from the North Bronx and grew up in housing projects. She attended schools in which it was not a given that students would go on to colleges and careers.”  It is due to these factors that Lewis writes about making an effort to focus special attention on minority students because they are up against different odds than the other students.

In this interview, Lewis answers questions, such as “Why did you decide to go into education?” and “As someone who grew up in the same type of community as a lot of your students, what are the things you’re able to see in your students that someone else might miss?”

To the latter of the two questions, Lewis responds by saying:

“One thing that sticks out for me is understanding the need to change the self-perception of black and brown students. I speak about this lack of self-love that many of our children face as a result of living in a white supremacist world. I think sometimes if you don’t have that perspective, you might not necessarily pick up on how many times it rears its ugly head.

If we had more black and brown leadership that knew how to speak to these issues, then we could have a massive shift in our children’s state of minds, which would only bring forth greater achievement.

It’s not that I don’t think white teachers can be change agents. That’s not what I’m saying at all. But at the same time, don’t tell me you think you totally get my students in the same capacity that I could. It’s nothing against you. We need to have more faces of color showing students where we came from and how we still were able to achieve despite where we came from. 

I don’t want students to grow up thinking that white people are the gatekeepers of education. When they only see white teachers, they think education is whiteness, and that sends a message, and that’s the wrong message to send.”

To read the complete interview, you can do so here.

Be sure to check out Pamela Lewis’ Teaching While Black and other related titles on Fordham University Press’ website.

On March 1st, The Huffington Post released an interview with Fordham Press author, Pamela Lewis, whose new book, Teaching While Black: A New Voice on Race and Education in New York City, comes out this month. The Huffington Post describes Lewis as not like most of your fellow teachers. Why is that? It is because “Lewis is black. She’s from the North Bronx and grew up in housing projects. She attended schools in which it was not a given that students would go on to colleges and careers.” It is due to these factors that Lewis writes about making an effort to focus special attention on minority students because they are up against different odds than the other students. Full Story

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The TLS Book Review: ‘Cytomegalovirus’

In the February 19th issue of The Times Literary Supplement (TLS), Patrick Pollard reviews Hervé Guibert’s book, Cytomegalovirus: A Hospitalization Diary, translated by Clara Orban, “which recounts [Guibert's] time in the hospital [...] despite the tragic end it gave to his life.”  

Guibert was a prominant French literary figure, who died of AIDS in the early 1990s. Currently, there is a renewed interest in his writings as well as the history of early years of the AIDS crisis in the United States and Europe.  In this edition, it includes an introduction from French literary scholar and AIDS activist, David Caron, as well as a critical afterword from medical anthropologist Todd Meyer.

Pollard writes in his review, that “Guibert’s diary is matter-of-fact, relating in a somewhat nonchalant way the tribulations of life in a hospital where the nurses are kind but distant, the equipment poor, the hygiene inadequate, but the routine of intravenous drips and so forth imperative.”  While these where the issues occurring during Giubert’s time, Pollack says that Caron describes how “the problem in the twenty-first century is the muted way in which sexual difference is treated.”  Both of the above topics are heavily referenced and discussed in Cytomegalovirus.

It is remarkable how through all of Guibert’s suffering, “his terse and banal text can be read as a powerful protest against the denial of any individual’s humanity.  Or self-pity and of anger against Fate there is little trace.”  He “did not shrink from naming the cruder aspects of the functions of the human body,” which makes his diary entries truly ground-breaking.

To read the full review, you can do so here.

You can check out Cytomegalovirus and other similar works right here, at Fordham Press’ website.

In the February 19th issue of The Times Literary Supplement (TLS), Patrick Pollard reviews Hervé Guibert’s book, Cytomegalovirus: A Hospitalization Diary, translated by Clara Orban, “which recounts his time in the hospital [...] despite the tragic end it gave to his life.” Full Story

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Left of Black Interview: Ed Pavlić of ‘Who Can Afford to Improvise?’

Ed Pavlić, author of Fordham Press’ Who Can Afford to Improvise?: James Baldwin and Black Music, the Lyric and the Listenerswas recently interviewed on an episode of Left  of Black on The Root, and the interview has now been published.  Tsitsi Ella Jaji, a Duke Professor, speaks with Pavlić about his Fall 2015 book, and together they zero in on lyricism and what that is.  They discuss how Baldwin referred to himself as a poet, even though he did not write much poetry at all.  Going off of this fact, Jaji and Pavlić focus on what it really means to be a poet and how to make a difference on the world with your work.

For a preview of Pavlić’s interview, you can click on the picture below.

In order to view the complete interview, you can find it here.

If you are interested in Ed Pavlić’s Who Can Afford to Improvise?: James Baldwin and Black Music, the Lyric and the Listeners, be sure to check out Fordham Press’ website for this title and others like it.

Ed Pavlić, author of Fordham Press’ Who Can Afford to Improvise?: James Baldwin and Black Music, the Lyric and the Listeners, was recently interviewed on an episode of Left of Black on The Root, and the interview has now been published. Tsitsi Ella Jaji, a Duke Professor, speaks with Pavlić about his Fall 2015 book, and together they zero in on lyricism and what that is. They discuss how Baldwin referred to himself as a poet, even though he did not write much poetry at all. Going off of this fact, Jaji and Pavlić focus on what it really means to be a poet and how to make a difference on the world with your work. Full Story

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