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The Kent State University Press

The Kent State University Press

Website: http://www.kentstateuniversitypress.com/

The Kent State University Press publishes scholarly books in the fields of history, including military, U.S. diplomatic, Civil War, American cultural, women's, and art; Ohio regional studies; American and British literature and criticism; and biography.


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The Kent State University Press

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Far From Algiers Cover

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Far From Algiers

Winner of the 2007 Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize

“How honored I am—how lucky—to have been able to choose this superb first book by Djelloul Marbrook that honors a lifetime of hidden achievement. . . . Sometimes the poems seem utterly symbolic, surreal; they are philosophical, historical, psychological, political, and spiritual. The genius is in the many ways these poems can be read. I kept being rewarded by new awarenesses of the poet’s intentions, by the breadth and scope of the manuscript. As I read, I felt more and more that it was impossible that this was a first book. It seemed the writer knew exactly what to say, and, more importantly, exactly what to leave out.” <br /> —Toi Derricotte, judge

“In a dizzying and divisive time, it’s beautiful to see how Djelloul Marbrook’s wise and flinty poems outfox the Furies of exile, prejudice, and longing. Succinct, aphoristic, rich with the poet’s resilient clarity in the face of a knockabout world, Far from Algiers is a remarkable and distinctive debut.”<br /> —Cyrus Cassells

“Djelloul Marbrook, ‘a highly skilled outsider,’ bursts into poetry with this splendid first book, which brings together the energy of a young poet with the wisdom of long experience.” <br />

Greek-American Relations from Monroe to Truman Cover

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Greek-American Relations from Monroe to Truman

Most studies of U.S. relations with Greece focus on the Cold War period, beginning with the enunciation of the Truman Doctrine in 1947. There is little substance in the extant literature about American policy toward or interaction with Greece prior to World War II. This overlooks the important intersections between the two countries and their peoples that predated the Second World War.

U.S. interest in Greece and its people has been long-standing, albeit primarily on an informal or unofficial level. Author Angelo Repousis explores a variety of resonant themes in the field of U.S. foreign relations, including the role of nongovernment individuals and groups in influencing foreign policymaking, the way cultural influences transfer across societies (in this particular case the role of philhellenism), and how public opinion shapes policy—or not. 

Repousis chronicles American public attitudes and government policies toward modern Greece from its war for independence (1821–1829) to the Truman Doctrine (1947) when Washington intervened to keep Greece from coming under communist domination. Until then, although the U.S. government was not actively in support of Greek efforts, American philhellenes had supported the attempt to achieve and protect Greek independence. They saw modern Greece as the embodiment of the virtues of its classical counterpart (human dignity, freedom of thought, knowledge, love of beauty and the arts, republicanism, etc.) and worked diligently, albeit not always successfully, to push U.S. policymakers toward greater official interest in and concern for Greece.

Pre–Cold War American intervention in Greek affairs was motivated in part by a perceived association among American and Greek political cultures. Indebted to ancient Greece for their democratic institutions, philhellenes believed they had an obligation to impart the blessings of free and liberal institutions to Greece, a land where those ideals had first been conceived.

Guerrilla Daughter Cover

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Guerrilla Daughter

The experiences of an American family in the Philippines during World War II

Just nine days before her seventh birthday, Virginia Hansen Holmes heard about the attack on American forces at Pearl Harbor and wondered if this was going to change her life. She lived on the Philippine Island of Mindanao with her two teenage brothers, eleven-year-old sister, mother, and father, an official with the East Mindanao Mining Company.

Guerrilla Daughter is a memoir of this family’s extraordinary struggle to survive the Japanese occupation of Mindanao from the spring of 1942 until the end of the war in September 1945. The men in the family fought as guerrilla soldiers in the island’s resistance movement, while Holmes, her mother, and her older sister were left to their own resources to evade the Japanese, who had been given orders to execute Americans. The Hansen women, faced with immediate death if found and suffering from hunger, disease, and barely tolerable living conditions, hid out in the Philippine jungle and remote villages to remain just ahead of the growing Japanese presence and avoid capture.

Using original documents and papers belonging to her father, as well as her own vivid recollections and the reminiscences of her siblings, Virginia Hansen Holmes presents this gripping and compelling account of extraordinary survival.

Hauptmann's Ladder Cover

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Hauptmann's Ladder

A Step-by-Step Analysis of the Lindbergh Kidnapping

In 1936, Bruno Richard Hauptmann was executed for the kidnapping and murder of Charles Lindbergh Jr. Almost all of America believed Hauptmann guilty; only a few magazines and tabloids published articles questioning his conviction. In the ensuing decades, many books about the Lindbergh case have been published.  Some have declared Hauptmann the victim of a police conspiracy and frame-up, and one posited that Lindbergh actually killed his own son and fabricated the entire kidnapping to mask the deed. Because books about the crime have been used as a means to advance personal theories, the truth has often been sacrificed and readers misinformed.

Hauptmann’s Ladder is a testament to the truth that counters the revisionist histories all too common in the true crime genre. Author Richard T. Cahill Jr. puts the “true” back in “true crime,” providing credible information and undistorted evidence that enables readers to form their own opinions and reach their own conclusions.

Cahill presents conclusions based upon facts and documentary evidence uncovered in his twenty years of research. Using primary sources and painstakingly presenting a chronological reconstruction of the crime and its aftermath, he debunks false claims and explodes outrageous theories, while presenting evidence that has never before been revealed.

Hauptmann’s Ladder is a meticulously researched examination of the Lindbergh kidnapping that restores and preserves the truth of the crime of the century.

The Heart's Truth Cover

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The Heart's Truth

Essays on the Art of Nursing

A collection revealing the joys, fears, intimacies, and transcendent moments shared by a nurse and her patients

The Heart’s Truth should be required reading at every nursing school in the country. It offers a powerful and moving portrait of what it means to be a nurse. In writing that is of the highest quality, the reader is swept up in the drama of nursing and the compassion with which it is perfused.”—Richard Selzer, surgeon and author

“Davis has perfectly captured the broader arc of movement from awkward, insecure novice to competent, often morally exhausted, clinician, with a poet’s touch.”—Amy M. Haddad, PhD

“In her breathtaking collection of essays, Cortney Davis reveals ‘the details of flesh’ that comprise the core of a nurse’s experience. Writing with the power, precision and careful observation of a seasoned clinician and the sensitivity of a poet, Davis guides the reader along the challenging path of her career.”— Richard Berlin, poet and physician

“Cortney Davis has an uncanny ability to give voice to the profound act of everyday nursing and its power in transforming the lives of people. Somehow, she sees the shadows and ghosts that fill our bodies and souls and makes sense of them, showing us that the divide between patient and provider is an artificial one that can get in the way of true understanding. The Heart’s Truth reminds us of the power of reflection and narrative and challenges us to reclaim these ways of knowing in the interest of healing our patients—and ourselves.”—Diana J. Mason, PhD, RN, FAAN, Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Nursing

What is it like to be a student nurse washing the feet of a dying patient? To be a newly graduated nurse, in charge of the Intensive Care Unit for the first time, who wonders if her mistake might have cost a life? Or to be an experienced nurse who, by her presence and care, holds a patient to this world? Poet and nurse practitioner Cortney Davis answers these questions by examining her own experiences and through them reveals a glimpse into the minds and hearts of those who care for us when we are at our most vulnerable. The Heart’s Truth offers the joys, frustrations, fears, and miraculous moments that nurses, new and experienced, face every day.

In these finely wrought essays, Davis traces her twin paths, nursing and writing, inviting readers to share what she discovers along the way—lessons not only about the human body but also about the human soul. Rich, intimate, and never shrinking from the realities of illness, the grace of healing, or the wonder of words, The Heart’s Truth will inspire student caregivers, intrigue readers, and affirm those who have long worked in nursing, a profession that Davis calls “odd, mysterious, humbling, addicting, and often transcendent.”

Hell’s Wasteland Cover

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Hell’s Wasteland

The Pennsylvania Torso Murders

From 1934 to 1938, Cleveland, Ohio, was racked by a classic battle between good and evil. On one side was the city’s safety director, Eliot Ness. On the other was a nameless phantom dubbed the “Mad Butcher of Kingsbury Run,” who littered the inner city with the remains of decapitated and dismembered corpses. Never caught or even officially identified, the Butcher simply faded into history, leaving behind a frightening legend that both haunts and fascinates Cleveland to this day. In 2001 the Kent State University Press published James Jessen Badal’s In the Wake of the Butcher: Cleveland’s Torso Murders, the first serious, book-length treatment of this dark chapter in true crime history. Though Murder Has No Tongue: The Lost Victim of Cleveland’s Mad Butcher—a detailed study of the arrest and mysterious death of Frank Dolezal, the only man ever charged in the killings—followed in 2010.

Now Badal concludes his examination of the horrific cycle of murder-dismemberments with Hell’s Wasteland: The Pennsylvania Torso Murders. During the mid-1920s, a vast, swampy area just across the Ohio border near New Castle, Pennsylvania, revealed a series of decapitated and otherwise mutilated bodies. In 1940 railroad workers found the rotting remains of three naked and decapitated bodies in a string of derelict boxcars awaiting destruction in Pennsylvania’s Stowe Township. Were all of these terrible murders the work of Cleveland’s Mad Butcher? Many in Ohio and Pennsylvania law enforcement thought they were, and that assumption led to a massive, well-coordinated two-state investigation. In Hell’s Wasteland, Badal explores that nagging question in depth for the first time.

Relying on police reports, unpublished memoirs, and the surviving autopsy protocols—as well as contemporary newspaper coverage— Badal provides a detailed examination of the murder-dismemberments and weighs the evidence that potentially links them to the Cleveland carnage. Hell’s Wasteland is the last piece in the gigantic torso murder puzzle that spanned three decades, covered two states, and involved law enforcement from as many as five different cities.

Hemingway, Race, and Art Cover

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Hemingway, Race, and Art

Bloodlines and the Color Line

A social historical reading of Hemingway through the lens of race

William Faulkner has long been considered the great racial interrogator of the early-twentieth-century South. In Hemingway, Race, and Art, author Marc Kevin Dudley suggests that Ernest Hemingway not only shared Faulkner’s racial concerns but extended them beyond the South to encompass the entire nation. Though Hemingway wrote extensively about Native Americans and African Americans, always in the back of his mind was Africa. Dudley sees Hemingway’s fascination with, and eventual push toward, the African continent as a grand experiment meant to both placate and comfort the white psyche, and to challenge and unsettle it, too.

Twentieth-century white America was plagued by guilt in its dealings with Native Americans; simultaneously, it faced an increasingly dissatisfied African American populace. Marc Kevin Dudley demonstrates how Hemingway’s interest in race was closely aligned to a national anxiety over a changing racial topography. Affected by his American pedigree, his masculinity, and his whiteness, Hemingway’s treatment of race is characteristically complex, at once both a perpetuation of type and a questioning of white self-identity.

Hemingway, Race, and Art expands our understanding of Hemingway and his work and shows how race consciousness pervades the texts of one of America’s most important and influential writers.

Hemingway's Cuban Son Cover

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Hemingway's Cuban Son

Reflections on the Writer by His Longtime Majordomo

“This is the story of a poor, young Cuban boy who grew into a man and gained the trust and respect of a famous American author, whom he loved like a father. A man he called ‘Papa.’’—from the Preface

In 1996 René Villarreal returned to Cuba to retrieve his memoir of his life with Ernest Hemingway at the Finca Vigia. Sadly, he learned that the manuscript and photographs had been lost. Determined to tell his story, Villarreal, together with his son Raúl, set about rewriting the account of how he came to be Ernest Hemingway’s majordomo, confidant, and friend—his Cuban son.

Hemingway, called El Americano by the Cubans, moved into the Finca Vigia, an estate outside of Havana, in 1939. He allowed the village children to play on his property, and they soon became fixtures, caring for his pets, performing odd jobs, and running errands. Hemingway recognized René as especially responsible and attentive and made him household manager, or majordomo, in 1946 when René was only seventeen.

For the next fifteen years, René ran the Finca, tending to Hemingway and his wife, Mary, and their visiting family and distinguished guests. Villarreal’s clear recollections offer up humorous stories of escapades and adventures with Hemingway as well as insightful comments on the writer’s work habits, moods, passions, and friendships. He also writes of Cuba before and after the revolution, capturing so well the sense of place and time. Scholars and readers of Hemingway worldwide will be caught up in this compelling story of a great friendship and will find insight into this complicated, fascinating, brilliant writer.

Here Both Sweeter Cover

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Here Both Sweeter

Daniel Carter’s Here Both Sweeter is a book in which you “have a seedling in each pocket,” a “body bodies,” and words are something you “carve out” so as to make a home. The poems are stories, are seeds, are secret messages cast and sent across the natural world to a reader, where they blossom in the imagination. The plot is “scatter-wild,” the lyrics “all willful and fallow.” Carter’s language serves as a garden, rich and strange, full of acorns and ink and ash, and in it the green world (of nature, of the heart and body, of words and ideas) is overturned, recycled, and remade.

The Historicism of Charles Brockden Brown Cover

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The Historicism of Charles Brockden Brown

Radical History and the Early Republic

Mark L. Kamrath

A new perspective on the cultural politics of Charles Brockden Brown

The novels of Charles Brockden Brown, the most accomplished literary figure in early America, redefined the gothic genre and helped shape some of America’s greatest writers, including Herman Melville, Edgar Allan Poe, and Nathaniel Hawthorne. However, little has been said about the latter years of Brown’s career. While his early novels are celebrated for their innovative and experimental style, Brown’s later historical narratives are often dismissed as uninteresting, and Brown himself has been accused of having become “a stodgy conservative.”

Through a re-examination of these neglected historical writings, Mark L. Kamrath takes a fresh look at Brown’s later career and his role in the cultural politics of the early national period. This interdisciplinary study uses transatlantic historical contexts and recent narrative discourse to unveil Brown’s philosophic inquires into the filiopietistic tradition of historiography and increasingly imperialistic notion of American exceptionalism. It recovers a forgotten debate—and radical position—about the nature of historical truth and representation and opens up for contemporary discussion what it means to write about the past.

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