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Encountering Josiah Royce's Ethico-Religious Insight
This book contends that Josiah Royce bequeathed to philosophy a novel idealism based on an ethico-religious insight. This insight became the basis for an idealistic personalism, wherein the Real is the personal and a metaphysics of community is the most appropriate approach to metaphysics for personal beings, especially in an often impersonal and technological intellectual climate. The first part of the book traces how Royce constructed his idealistic personalism in response to criticisms made by George Holmes Howison. That personalism is interpreted as an ethical and panentheistic one, somewhat akin to Charles Hartshorne's process philosophy. The second part investigates Royce's idealistic metaphysics in general and his ethico-religious insight in particular. In the course of these investigations, the author examines how Royce's ethico-religious insight could be strengthened by incorporating the philosophical theology of Dr. Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., and Emmanuel Levinas's ethical metaphysics. The author concludes by briefly exploring the possibility that Royce's progressive racial anti-essentialism is, in fact, a form of cultural, antiblack racism and asks whether his cultural, antiblack racism taints his ethico-religious insight.
Yes, There Will Be Singing brings together Marilyn Krysl’s essays on the origins of language and poetry, poetic form, the poetry of witness, and poetry’s collaboration with the healing arts. Beginning with pieces on her own origins as a poet, she branches into poetry’s profound spiritual and political possibilities, drawing on rich examples from poets such as Anna Akhmatova, W.S. Merwin, and Vénus Khoury-Ghata. Krysl concludes with a selection of stories of her nursing and humanitarian work, powerfully connecting poetic expression with a generous and compassionate worldview.
From King's Dream to Obama's Promise
Barack Obama’s presidential victory demonstrated unprecedented racial progress on a national level. Not since the civil rights legislation of the 1960s has the United States seen such remarkable advances. During Obama’s historic campaign, however, prominent African Americans voiced concern about his candidacy, demonstrating a divided agenda among black political leaders. The assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. changed perceptions about the nature of African American leadership. In Yes We Did?, Cynthia Fleming examines the expansion of black leadership from grassroots to the national arena, beginning with Booker T. Washington and W. E. B. DuBois and progressing through contemporary leaders including Harold Ford Jr., Louis Farrakhan, Jesse Jackson Jr., and Barack Obama. She emphasizes socioeconomic status, female black leadership, media influence, black conservatism, and generational conflict. Fleming had unprecedented access to a wide range of activists, including Carol Mosley Braun, Al Sharpton, and John Hope Franklin. She deftly maps the history of black leadership in America, illuminating both lingering disadvantages and obstacles that developed after the civil rights movement. Among those interviewed were community activists and scholars, as well as former freedom riders, sit-in activists, and others who were intimately involved in the civil rights struggle and close to Dr. King. Their personal accounts reflect the diverse viewpoints of the black community and offer a new understanding of the history of African American leadership, its current status, and its uncertain future.
Piety, Gender, and Resistance in the Ultra-Orthodox World
2009 Choice Outstanding Academic Title
The ultra-Orthodox yeshiva, or Jewish seminary, is a space reserved for men, and for a focus on religious ideals. Fundamentalist forms of piety are usually believed to be quite resistant to change. In Yeshiva Fundamentalism, Nurit Stadler uncovers surprising evidence that firmly religious and pious young men of this community are seeking to change their institutions to incorporate several key dimensions of the secular world: a redefinition of masculinity along with a transformation of the family, and participation in civic society through the labor market, the army, and the construction of organizations that aid terror victims. In their private thoughts and sometimes public actions, they are resisting the demands placed on them to reject all aspects of the secular world.
Because women are not allowed in the yeshiva setting, Stadler's research methods had to be creative. She invented a way to simulate yeshiva learning with young yeshiva men by first studying with an informant to learn key religious texts, often having to do with family life, sexuality, or participation in the larger society. This informant then invited students over to discuss these texts with Stadler and himself outside of the yeshiva setting. This strategy enabled Stadler to gain access to aspects of yeshiva life in which a woman is usually unable to participate, and to hear "unofficial" thoughts and reactions which would have been suppressed had the interviews taken place within the yeshiva.
Yeshiva Fundamentalism provides an intriguing and at times surprising glimpse inside the all-male world of the ultra-orthodox yeshivas in Israel, while providing insights relevant to the larger context of transformations of fundamentalism worldwide. While there has been much research into how contemporary feminism has influenced the study of fundamentalist groups worldwide, little work has focused on ultra-Orthodox men's desires to change, as Stadler does here, showing how fundamentalist men are themselves involved in the formulation of new meanings of piety, gender, modernity and relations with the Israeli state.
Life in Contemporary Appalachia
The distinctive way of life of the Southern Appalachian people has often been criticized, romanticized or derided, but rarely has it been understood. Yesterday's People, the fruit of many years' labor in the mountains, reveals the fears, anxieties, and hopes that underlie the mountaineers' way of thinking and acting, and thereby shape their relationships in family and community. First published in 1965, this book has been an indispensable guide for all who seek to study, work or live within the Appalachian culture.
Part literary history and part medical sociology, Gilman’s book chronicles the careers of three major immigrant Yiddish poets of the twentieth century—Solomon Bloomgarten (Yehoash), Sholem Shtern, and H. Leivick—all of whom lived through, and wrote movingly of, their experience as patients in a tuberculosis sanatorium. Gilman addresses both the formative influence of the sanatorium on the writers’ work and the culture of an institution in which, before the days of antibiotics, writing was encouraged as a form of therapy. He argues that each writer produced a significant body of work during his recovery, itself an experience that profoundly influenced the course of his subsequent literary career. Seeking to recover the “imaginary” of the sanatorium as a scene of writing by doctors and patients, Gilman explores the historical connection between tuberculosis treatment and the written word. Through a close analysis of Yiddish poems, and translations of these writers, Gilman sheds light on how essential writing and literature were to the sanatorium experience. All three poets wrote under the shadow of death. Their works are distinctive, but their most urgent concerns are shared: strangers in a strange land, suffering, displacement, acculturation, and, inevitably, what it means to be a Jew.
Classical Commentary and Literati Activism in the Northern Song Period, 960-1127
This book is the first comprehensive study of Yijing (Book of Changes) commentary during the Northern Song period, showing how it reflects a coming to terms with major political and social changes. Seen as a transitional period in China’s history, the Northern Song (960–1127) is often described as the midpoint in the Tang-Song transition or as the beginning of Song-Ming Neo-Confucianism. Challenging this traditional view, Tze-ki Hon demonstrates the complexity of the Northern Song by breaking it into three periods characterized by, alternately, the reestablishment of civil governance, large-scale reforms, and a descent into factional rivalry. To illustrate the distinct characteristics of these three periods, Hon compares commentaries by Hu Yuan, Zhang Zai, and Cheng Yi with five other Yijing commentaries, highlighting the broad parameters, as well as the specific content, of an extremely important world of discourse—the debate on literati activism. These differing views on the literati’s role in civil governance prove how lively, diverse, and intense Northern Song intellectual life was, while also reminding us how important it is to understand the history of the period on its own terms.
Legendary Lyricist and Human Rights Activist
Known as "Broadway's social conscience," E. Y. Harburg (1896-1981) wrote the lyrics to the standards, "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?," "April in Paris," and "It's Only a Paper Moon," as well as all of the songs in The Wizard of Oz, including "Over the Rainbow." Harburg always included a strong social and political component to his work, fighting racism, poverty, and war. Interweaving close to fifty interviews (most of them previously unpublished), over forty lyrics, and a number of Harburg's poems, Harriet Hyman Alonso enables Harburg to talk about his life and work. He tells of his early childhood on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, his public school education, how the Great Depression opened the way to writing lyrics, and his work on Broadway and Hollywood, including his blacklisting during the McCarthy era. Finally, but most importantly, Harburg shares his commitment to human rights and the ways it affected his writing and his career path. Includes an appendix with Harburg's key musicals, songs, and films.