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James Baldwin's Later Fiction Cover

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James Baldwin's Later Fiction

Witness to the Journey

Lynn Orilla Scott

James Baldwin’s Later Fiction examines the decline of Baldwin’s reputation after the middle 1960s, his tepid reception in mainstream and academic venues, and the ways in which critics have often mis-represented and undervalued his work. Scott develops readings of Tell Me How Long the Train’s Been Gone, If Beale Street Could Talk, and Just Above My Head that explore the interconnected themes in Baldwin’s work: the role of the family in sustaining the arts, the price of success in American society, and the struggle of black artists to change the ways that race, sex, and masculinity are represented in American culture. 
     Scott argues that Baldwin’s later writing crosses the cultural divide between the 1950s and 1960s in response to the civil rights and black power movements. Baldwin’s earlier works, his political activism and sexual politics, and traditions of African American autobiography and fiction all play prominent roles in Scott’s analysis.

James Buchanan and the Coming of the Civil War Cover

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James Buchanan and the Coming of the Civil War

John W. Quist

As James Buchanan took office in 1857, the United States found itself at a crossroads. Dissolution of the Union had been averted and the Democratic Party maintained control of the federal government, but the nation watched to see if Pennsylvania's first president could make good on his promise to calm sectional tensions.

Despite Buchanan's central role in a crucial hour in U.S. history, few presidents have been more ignored by historians. In assembling the essays for this volume, Michael Birkner and John Quist have asked leading scholars to reconsider whether Buchanan’s failures stemmed from his own mistakes or from circumstances that no president could have overcome.

Buchanan's dealings with Utah shed light on his handling of the secession crisis. His approach to Dred Scott reinforces the image of a president whose doughface views were less a matter of hypocrisy than a thorough identification with southern interests. Essays on the secession crisis provide fodder for debate about the strengths and limitations of presidential authority in an existential moment for the young nation.

Although the essays in this collection offer widely differing interpretations of Buchanan's presidency, they all grapple honestly with the complexities of the issues faced by the man who sat in the White House prior to the towering figure of Lincoln, and contribute to a deeper understanding of a turbulent and formative era.

James Cameron Cover

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James Cameron

Interviews

Brent Dunham

James Cameron (b. 1954) is lauded as one of the most successful and innovative filmmakers of the last thirty years. His films often break records, both in their massive budgets and in their box-office earnings. They include such hits as The Terminator, Aliens, The Abyss, Titanic, and Avatar. Part scientist, part dramatist, Cameron combines these two qualities into inventive and captivating films that often push the boundaries of special effects to accommodate his imagination. James Cameron: Interviews chronicles the writer-director's rise through the Hollywood system, highlighted by his "can-do" attitude and his insatiable drive to make the best film possible.

As a young boy growing up in Canada, Cameron imagined himself an astronaut, a deep-sea explorer, a science fiction writer, or a filmmaker. Transplanted to southern California, he would go on to realize many of those boyhood fantasies.

This collection of interviews provides glimpses of the filmmaker as he advances from Roger Corman's underling to "king of the world." The interviews are drawn from a number of sources including TV appearances and conversations on blogs, which have never been published in print. Spanning more than twenty years, this collection constructs a concise and thorough examination of Cameron, a filmmaker who has almost single-handedly ushered Hollywood into the twenty-first century.

James Carey Cover

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James Carey

A Critical Reader

Eve Stryker Munson

James Carey-scholar, media critic, and teacher of journalists-almost single-handedly established the importance of defining a cultural perspective when analyzing communications. Interspersing Carey’s major essays with articles exploring his central themes and their importance, this collection provides a critical introduction to the work of this significant figure. Long before the “interpretive turn” became the fashion in the humanities and sociology, Carey was busily studying and combining the ideas of an impressive array of philosophers, sociologists, historians, and anthropologists, including John Dewey, Clifford Geertz, Raymond Williams, Thomas Kuhn, Max Weber, C. Wright Mills, Richard Rorty, Jürgen Habermas, Harold Innis, and Lewis Mumford. In James Carey: A Critical Reader, seven scholars who have been influenced by him consider his work and how it has affected the development of media studies. Carey has demonstrated that mass communications serve a complex function in society, with one central question reflecting his concerns: How does one make democracy work in a vast country that spans a continent? In his view, symbols, language, and those who create them are reality-creating, rather than reality-reflecting. Carey has examined the roles the media and the academy have played in creating and maintaining a public sphere, as well as the ways technology helps or hinders that project. Carey’s themes range from the strains on democracy and drawbacks of technology to the critique of journalism and the politics of academe. Contributors: G. Stuart Adam, Carleton U, Canada; James Carey, Columbia U; Carolyn Marvin, U of Pennsylvania; John Pauly, St. Louis U; Jay Rosen, New York U; Michael Schudson, U of California, San Diego.

James Dean Transfigured Cover

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James Dean Transfigured

The Many Faces of Rebel Iconography

By Claudia Springer

After the death of James Dean in 1955, the figure of the teen rebel permeated the globe, and its presence is still felt in the twenty-first century. Rebel iconography—which does not have to resemble James Dean himself, but merely incorporates his disaffected attitude—has become an advertising mainstay used to sell an array of merchandise and messages. Despite being overused in advertisements, it still has the power to surprise when used by authors and filmmakers in innovative and provocative ways. The rebel figure has mass appeal precisely because of its ambiguities; it can mean anything to anyone. The global appropriation of rebel iconography has invested it with fresh meanings. Author Claudia Springer succeeds here in analyzing both ends of the spectrum—the rebel icon as a tool in upholding capitalism’s cycle of consumption, and as a challenge to that cycle and its accompanying beliefs. In this groundbreaking study of rebel iconography in international popular culture, Springer studies a variety of texts from the United States and abroad that use this imagery in contrasting and thought-provoking ways. Using a cultural studies approach, she analyzes films, fiction, poems, Web sites, and advertisements to determine the extent to which the icon’s adaptations have been effective as a response to the actual social problems affecting contemporary adolescents around the world.

James Dickey Cover

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James Dickey

The Selected Poems

James Dickey

James Dickey: The Selected Poems is the first book to collect James Dickey's very best poems. Like many visionary poets of the ecstatic imagination, Dickey experimented in a wide variety of literary styles. This volume brings together the finest work from each of the periods in Dickey's extremely controversial career. For over three decades, until his death in 1997, Dickey was one of the nation's most important poets; these are the poems that brought him a popular readership and critical acclaim.

James Fenimore Cooper - American Writers 48 Cover

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James Fenimore Cooper - American Writers 48

University of Minnesota Pamphlets on American Writers

Robert E. Spiller

James Fenimore Cooper - American Writers 48 was first published in 1965. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

James Gould Cozzens - American Writers 58 Cover

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James Gould Cozzens - American Writers 58

University of Minnesota Pamphlets on American Writers

Granville Hicks

James Gould Cozzens - American Writers 58 was first published in 1966. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

James Habersham Cover

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James Habersham

Loyalty, Politics, and Commerce in Colonial Georgia

Frank Lambert

James Habersham was an early American success story. After arriving in Savannah in 1738, he failed in his efforts to wrest a living from the Georgia wilderness and lived his first year at public expense. Then, by dint of his own efforts and through the connections he forged, Habersham emerged as one of the colony's most influential and prosperous citizens, making his name as a planter, merchant, evangelist, and political leader. The third wealthiest person in the colony at the time of his death in 1775, Habersham had a public career that included service as the secretary of Georgia, president of the King's council, and acting Governor.

But Habersham's story is more than biography. It also provides a window into colonial Georgia and its transformation from a struggling colony on the brink of collapse in the 1740s to a prosperous province in the 1770s, confident enough to defy the Crown. Ranging over such topics as the rise of Methodist missionary fervor, the development of transatlantic trade, the introduction of slavery, and the escalating debate over American independence, Frank Lambert tells how Habersham's success is inextricably tied to Georgia's fortunes and how he played a major role in helping the colony exploit its abundant resources. Habersham's economic development plan provided a blueprint for attracting new settlers, supplying an abundance of cheap labor, and opening new markets.

Habersham's achievements, however, are obscured by his unpopular stance on American independence. While his three sons distinguished themselves as Patriots, Habersham remained loyal to the Crown, though he had opposed Britain's new imperial policies in the 1760's. Nevertheless, it was Habersham's loyal service to colonial Georgia that enabled the colony to separate successfully from the mother country and assume its place in the new republic as a prosperous, vigorous state.

James Hall, Literary Pioneer of the Ohio Valley Cover

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James Hall, Literary Pioneer of the Ohio Valley

John T. Flanagan

James Hall, Literary Pioneer of the Ohio Valley was first published in 1941. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

For generations the attention of students of American literature has been directed toward the Atlantic seaboard, but the rise of regional literature and the development of genuine artists in various parts of the United States has caused them to turn their scrutiny westward. High on the western horizon of the early 1800's stands James Hall, a literary pioneer in the Ohio Valley, one of the minor literary figures whose influence on the artistic consciousness of the frontier was widely felt.

Author, critic, journalist, editor, publisher, and historian—few men have had more to do with the early cultural development of the Middle West. Every historian of the Ohio and Mississippi valleys is indebted to Hall for facts and details of life in America in the early nineteenth century.

A circuit judge when there were only 55,000 people in all Illinois—he had an unparalleled opportunity to observe the life and customs of the times. A publisher of the first literary magazine west of the Ohio when there were more Indians and horse thieves in the state than there were literate readers—he had a virgin field for awakening the artistic, literary, even scientific, interest of the frontier.

He organized the first State Historical Society of Illinois, was state treasurer, published two newspapers, welcomed Lafayette on his triumphal tour, edited the first literary annual in the West, awarded a prize to Harriet Beecher (Stowe) for her "New England Sketch," published in his magazine. Moving to Cincinnati when it was at the peak of its sectional importance, an intellectual and cultural oasis on the frontier, Hall continued his sponsorship of education and culture.

James Hall's own published works were multitudinous in the fields of fiction, biography, poetry, criticism, history, and anthropology. His picture of the prairies in his day is still one of the best accounts ever written and his Indian Tribes of North America a monumental volume, but none of his works is of first-rate importance. Nevertheless, because of the tremendous variety of his activities and the breadth of his influence, he left his stamp upon the history and the literature of the region.

Hall's work is an honest, vigorous record of the path of the American pioneer in the days of the rapid growth and expansion of a new nation, and an understanding of his contribution is obligatory for every serious student of American literature.

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