Bookmarks Summer/Fall 2018

Presenting for HumansPresenting for Humans

Insights for Speakers on Ditching Perfection and Creating Connection

Lisa Braithwaite ’87 challenges preconceived notions about public speaking and guides the creation of meaningful and memorable presentations.

Fascinating New YorkersFascinating New Yorkers

Power Freaks, Mobsters, Liberated Women, Creators, Queers and Crazies

Clifford Browder ’50 profiles the famous and forgotten, from J.P. Morgan’s nose to a pioneer in female erotica.


In this mystery/thriller /love story by Betty Jean Craige ’68, a university president is held hostage when a dangerous ideologue tries to eradicate the school’s genetics institute.

Everyday CreaturesEveryday Creatures

A Naturalist on the Surprising Beauty of Ordinary Life in Wild Places

George James Kenagy ’67 offers13 personal essays on nature, gleaned from observations, discoveries and experiences of deserts, mountains, forests and the sea.

Come West and SeeCome West and See

This debut collection of short stories by Maxim Loskutoff ’07 describes a violent separatist movement, with tales of love and heartbreak.


The Atlantis Grail (Book Three)

In this fantasy novel by Vera Nazarian ’88, nerdy Gwen Lark must fight her way through a difficult contest as the fate of two worlds, Earth and Atlantis, hangs in the balance.

The Big NoteThe Big Note

A Guide to the Recordings of Frank Zappa

Charles Ulrich ’79 offers a guide to Frank Zappa’s music composed from hundreds of interviews, letters and email correspondences spanning 35 years.


New and Selected Stories of the American West

Miles Wilson ’66 offers a collection of short stories set in the American West—geographically, culturally and psychologically—ranging from fable to realism and ranchers to fathers.

Latin America in the Era of the Cuban Revolution Latin America in the Era of the Cuban Revolution

Thomas C. Wright ’63 offers an interpretation of the Cuban Revolution era, synthesizing its trends, phases, impact and influence on Latin America.

Understanding NanomaterialsUnderstanding Nanomaterials

Professor of Chemistry Malkiat Johal and his former student, Lewis Johnson ’07, co-wrote this second-edition textbook, providing a comprehensive introduction to the field of nanomaterials as well as an easy read.

The AI DelusionThe AI Delusion

Fletcher Jones Professor of Economics Gary Smith argues that our faith in artificial intelligence is misplaced and makes the case for human judgment.

Bookmarks Spring 2018

Permission to Die Candid Conversations About Death and DyingPermission to Die
Candid Conversations About Death and Dying

Rabbi Anthony Fratello ’94 teamed with a neurologist, a psychotherapist and a physician to empower readers to think about death and dying.





Spiritual Citizenship Transnational Pathways from Black Power to Ifá in TrinidadSpiritual Citizenship
Transnational Pathways from Black Power to Ifá in Trinidad

Nicole Fadeke Castor ’89 explores the role of Ifá/Orisha religious practices in shaping local, national and transnational belonging in African diasporic communities.





My Pomona CollegeMy Pomona College

Emeritus Professor of Economics James D. Likens offers a memoir of 47 years on the faculty of Pomona College, stretching from the turbulent ’60s to the new millennium.







Indecorous Thinking Figures of Speech in Early Modern PoeticsIndecorous Thinking
Figures of Speech in Early Modern Poetics

Professor of English Colleen Rosenfeld examines the use of figures of speech by such poets as Edmund Spenser and Mary Wroth as a means of celebrating and expanding the craft of poetry.




Bones Around My Neck The Life and Exile of a Prince ProvocateurBones Around My Neck
The Life and Exile of a Prince Provocateur

Tamara Loos ’89 examines the life of Prince Prisdang Chumsai, Siam’s first diplomat to Europe, and, through him, the complexities of global imperialism.





A Second Course in Linear AlgebraA Second Course in Linear Algebra

This new textbook by Professor of Mathematics Stephan Garcia and coauthor Roger Horn helps students transition from basic theory to advanced topics and applications.






Where There’s SmokeWhere There’s Smoke

Professor of Environmental Analysis Char Miller edited this interdisciplinary anthology on the troubling environmental consequences of illegal marijuana production on public, private and tribal lands.






The Party’s Primary Control of Congressional NominationsThe Party’s Primary
Control of Congressional Nominations

Hans J.G. Hassell ’05 explores the ways in which political parties work behind the scenes to shape the options available to voters through the primary process.





The Ballad of Huck & MiguelThe Ballad of Huck & Miguel

In a provocative tribute to Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn, Tim DeRoche ’92 transports Huck to modern-day L.A., following his escape down the concrete gash of the Los Angeles River in the company of an undocumented immigrant falsely accused of murder.

Bookmarks Fall 2017

The Wolf, the Duck, and the MouseThe Wolf, the Duck, and the Mouse

The author of the acclaimed children’s book Sam and Dave Dig a Hole, Mac Barnett ’04, again joins illustrator Jon Klassen for a fable with a twist and a wink—in this case, a mouse and a duck who set up housekeeping inside a wolf.


Illustrator and Caldecott honoree Aaron Becker ’96 completes his epic children’s trilogy with a third wordless journey through a hidden door into a visually stunning realm of enchanted landscapes and strange creatures.

Displaying Time: The Many Temporalities of the Festival of IndiaDisplaying Time: The Many Temporalities of the Festival of India

Rebecca M. Brown ’93 uses archival research and interviews with artists, curators, diplomats and visitors to analyze a selection of museum shows that were part of the Festival of India.

Come As You AreCome As You Are

Steven Ramirez ’74 writes a young-adult supernatural horror novella about a middle schooler and the terrifying evil forces he unleashes from the pages of an old notebook.

Roadside Geology of Southern CaliforniaRoadside Geology of Southern California

Award-winning Santa Barbara geologist Arthur G. Sylvester ’59 offers a tour of the iconic features of the Golden State, combining science and stories about its rocks and landscapes.

The Silly Parade and Other Topsy-Turvy PoemsThe Silly Parade and Other Topsy-Turvy Poems

Inspired by the book art of Nikolai Popov, Associate Professor of German and Russian Anne Dwyer translates and retells traditional Russian songs and folk poetry for children.

Real Deceptions: The Contemporary Reinvention of RealismReal Deceptions: The Contemporary Reinvention of Realism

In her third book, Pankey Professor of Media Studies Jennifer Friedlander explores a new theory of realism, examining a range of contemporary art, media and cultural practices to argue that our sense of reality lies within the deceptions themselves.

Money Machine: The Surprisingly Simple Power of Value InvestingMoney Machine: The Surprisingly Simple Power of Value Investing

Fletcher Jones Professor of Economics Gary Smith offers expert guidance on value investing to beginning investors and veterans alike, debunking current strategies and promoting what consistently outperforms the market.

Bookmarks Summer 2017

Dam WitherstonDam Witherston
A Witherston Murder Mystery

Betty Jean Craig ’68 returns to her fictional Georgia town of Witherston with a story of blackmail, sacred burial grounds and murder.

Revolution Against EmpireRevolution Against Empire
Taxes, Politics, and the Origins of American Independence

Justin du Rivage ’05 resets the story of American independence within the long, fierce clash over the political and economic future of the British Empire.

My Dark HorsesMy Dark Horses

In her first full-length poetry collection, Jodie Hollander ’68 offers highly personal poems about family, interspersed with meditations on the works of Rimbaud.

The Sensational PastThe Sensational Past
How the Enlightenment Changed the Way We Use Our Senses

Carolyn Purnell ’06 offers an insightful survey of the ways Enlightenment thinkers made sense of their world.

Military Thought in Early ChinaMilitary Thought in Early China

Christopher C. Rand ’70 provides a well-argued framework for understanding early China’s military philosophy.

Latin America Since IndependenceLatin America Since Independence
Two Centuries of Continuity and Change

Thomas C. Wright ’63 critically examines the complex colonial legacies of Latin America through 200 years of postcolonial history.

Love and Narrative Form in Toni Morrison’s Later NovelsLove and Narrative Form in Toni Morrison’s Later Novels

Jean Wyatt ’61 explores the interaction among ideas of love, narrative innovation and reader response in Morrison’s seven later novels.

Shake It UpShake It Up
Great American Writing on Rock and Pop from Elvis to Jay Z

Professors Jonathan Lethem and Kevin Dettmar, both longtime devotees and scholars of modern music, join forces as editors of a compendium of some of the nation’s all-time best writing from the world of rock and pop.

Interested in connecting with fellow Sagehen readers? Join the Pomona College Book Club at

Bookmarks Spring 2017

The Adulterous MuseThe Adulterous Muse
Maud Gonne, Lucien Millevoye and W.B. Yeats
Noted biographer Adrian Frazier ’71 explores the life of one of Ireland’s most romanticized figures, Maud Gonne, the charismatic but unfaithful inspiration for W.B. Yeats’s love poetry, who was also a leading figure in the Irish republican movement.






Daubigny, Monet, Van GoghDaubigny, Monet, Van Gogh
Impressions of Landscape
Lynne Ambrosini ’75, chief curator at the Taft Museum of Art in Cincinnati, was a lead contributor to this beautifully printed book on the interrelationships between the works of these three major artists.






Candy GirlCandy Girl
How I Gave Up Sugar and Created a Sweeter Life Between Meals
In her part-memoir, part-how-to book, Jill Kelly ’68 relates how she overcame her longtime addiction to food, and in particular, to sugar.






The Absence of EvelynThe Absence of Evelyn
Jackie Townsend ’87, the award-winning author of Imperfect Pairings, returns with a haunting drama about love, loss and identity that ranges from a palazzo in Rome to northern Vietnam, as four people bound together by the various incarnations of love pursue the strands of an unraveling family secret.






Perils and Promises of TechnologyPerils and Promises of Technology
In this collection of essays, psychologist David Ruben ’69 examines his own relationship to technology and considers some of the key questions about the future of computer-age humanity.







American EnlightenmentsAmerican Enlightenments
Pursuing Happiness in the Age of Reason
In her groundbreaking new book, Caroline Winterer ’88, a professor of humanities at Stanford University, explores the national mythology surrounding the American Enlightenment, tracing the complex interconnections between America and Europe that gave it birth.






Southern California Mountain CountrySouthern California Mountain Country
Places John Muir Walked and Places He Would Have Loved to Know
Nature photographer Glenn Pascall ’64 combines his photos of California mountain landscapes with quotes from noted California naturalist John Muir.






Laryngeal Physiology for the Surgeon and Clinician Laryngeal Physiology for the Surgeon and Clinician
(Second Edition)
Surgeon Clarence Sasaki ’62 updates his classic text on the functioning of the larynx and the management of diseases that strike that complex organ.




Book Talk: Migrants in the Crossfire of Love and Law

01-crossing-the-gulf-mahdavi-bookIn her new book, Crossing the Gulf: Love and Family in Migrant Lives, Associate Professor of Anthropology Pardis Mahdavi tells heartbreaking stories about migrants and trafficked mothers and their children in the Persian Gulf and talks to state officials, looking at how bonds of love get entangled with the law. Mahdavi talked to PCM’s Sneha Abraham about her book and the questions it poses about migration and families. This interview has been edited and condensed.

PCM: Talk about the relationship between family and migration.

MAHDAVI: Our concept of family has been reconceptualized and reconfigured in and through migration. People are separated from their blood-based kin; they’re forming new kinds of fictive kinship in the labor camps or abroad. Some people migrate out of a sense of familial duty, to honor their families. Sometimes they get stuck in situations which they feel they can’t get out of because of their family and familial obligations. Other people migrate to get away from their families, to get away from the watchful eyes of their families and communities. Families are not able to necessarily migrate together, and children are not able to migrate with their parents; they’re in a more tenuous relationship now than we would recognize when we look at migrants really just as laborers.

Laws complicate those relationships. Laws on migration, citizenship and human trafficking create a category of people caught in the crossfire of policies—and those people are often women and their children, and often they are trapped in situations of illegality.

PCM: Would you tease out the question of migration versus trafficking? That is something you’re exploring in your book.

MAHDAVI: I think it’s a real tension that needs to be teased out in the larger discourse. That’s the central question. What constitutes migration? What constitutes trafficking? It’s very difficult and that space is much more gray than we think. We’ve tended to assume that women in industries like the sex industry are all trafficked. We assume if there’s a woman involved, it’s the sex industry; if it’s a minor, it is trafficking; if it’s a male, if they’re in construction work, that’s migration. But that’s just not true. Trafficking really boils down to forced fraud or coercion within migration. It’s kind of a gray area, a much larger area than we think. The utility of the word “trafficking” really is questioned in the book. How useful is that word? The very definitions of migration and human trafficking are extremely politicized and depend on who you ask and when. Some people might strategically leverage the term, whereas other people strategically dodge it.

Some interpretations have positively elevated the importance of issues that migrants face; other people might say that the framework is used to demonize migrants or further restrict their movement.

PCM: What’s an example of a policy that affects these issues of migration and trafficking?

MAHDAVI: The United States Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP) is one policy, kind of a large one, to the extent that the report ranks all the countries into tiers and then makes recommendations based on their rankings. And sometimes the recommendations that the TIP report makes actually exacerbate the situation instead of making it better.

For instance, the United Arab Emirates is frequently ranked Tier 2, or Tier 2 Watchlist [countries that do not comply with minimum standards for protecting victims of trafficking but are making efforts], and the recommendation is that there should be more prosecutions and there should be more police. Now, the police in the U.A.E. are imported oftentimes, and from my interviews with migrant workers, it’s often the police who are raping sex workers and domestic workers. So you double up your cops, you double up your perpetrators of rape. So that is a policy that’s not helping anyone.

Other policies are more tethered to citizenship. They don’t have soil-based or birthright citizenship in the Gulf. Citizenship passes through the father in the U.A.E. and Kuwait. Citizenship also passes through the father in some of the sending countries, for instance, up until recently Nepal and India. So that means a domestic worker from India or Nepal, five years ago, who goes to the U.A.E., perhaps is raped by her employer or has a boyfriend and gets pregnant and has a baby, that woman is first incarcerated and then deported because as a guest worker she is contractually sterilized, and that baby is stateless because of citizenship laws that are incongruent.

There is a whole generation of people that have been born into this really problematic situation.

PCM: You write about “children of the Emir.” Who are they? 

MAHDAVI: So, “children of the Emir” is kind of the colloquial nomenclature given to a lot of the stateless children. They could be children of migrant workers, children who oftentimes were born in jail; maybe they were left in the Gulf when their mothers were deported. They may have been left there intentionally. It’s not clear, but they’re stateless children who were born in the Gulf. And some of them are growing up in orphanages; others are growing up in the palaces. There was a lot of tacit knowledge about these children and rumors that the Emir or members of the royal family are raising them. But nobody could find the kids. Nobody knew where they were or if it was actually true that they were being raised in the palaces or not. That was rumor until I conducted my research and I was able to confirm that by interviewing these children. And it is true that some are raised in various palaces, given a lot of opportunities, and treated very well.

So now many of them are adults, living and working in the Gulf but still stateless. Recently there’s been a slew of articles that have indicated that some of the Gulf countries, the U.A.E. and Kuwait included, are engaging in deals with the Comoros Islands where, in exchange for money to build roads and bridges, they are getting passports from the Comoros Islands. Initially it was thought that they would just get passports to give to these stateless individuals, but the individuals had to remain in the Gulf. However, a closer look at some of the contracts indicates that some of these stateless individuals who are being given Comoros citizenship actually will have to go to the Comoros Islands, which is a very disconcerting prospect for many stateless individuals in the Gulf. And for people who are from the Comoros Islands, they are now thinking, “Oh, our citizenship is for sale,” to stateless individuals who are suddenly told that they are citizens of a country they’ve never even heard of.

PCM:  You write about something you call “intimate mobility.” What is that?

MAHDAVI: Intimate mobility is kind of a trope that I’m putting forward in the book. Basically, it’s the idea that people do migrate in search of economic mobility and social mobility—which is obvious to a lot of people—but people also migrate in search of intimate mobility, or a way to mobilize their intimate selves. For example, they migrate to get away from their families in search of a way or space to explore their sexualities. Some form new intimate ties through migration. For others, their intimate subjectivities are challenged when one or more members of the family leave. My book is asking us to think about how intimacy can be both activated and challenged in migration.

PCM: What does it mean to mobilize one’s intimate self?

MAHDAVI: There was a young woman who migrated, who left India because her parents wanted her to get married in an arranged marriage. But she left because she saw herself as somebody who would not want to marry a man. She identifies as a lesbian, and so she migrated to Dubai so that she could explore that sexual side of herself. So that’s some of the intimate mobility I’m talking about.

On the flip side, I talk about intimate immobility and I talk about how people’s intimate lives, as in their intimate connections with their children back home or their partners back home, become immobilized when they are in the host country. Their intimate selves are immobilized because they can’t fully express their love for their children or for their partners. And also women who are guest workers or low-skilled workers legally cannot engage in sexual relations so they can’t as easily engage in a relationship.

Pardis Mahdavi is associate professor of anthropology, chair of the Pomona College Anthropology Department and director of the Pacific Basin Institute. Crossing the Gulf is her fourth book.

Bookmarks Fall 2016

collier-moabutahMoab, Utah by Day & Night
In his new book of landscape photography, Grant Collier ’96 shares the eerie beauty of earth and sky in the canyon country of eastern Utah. EXCERPT: “In my dreams, I occasionally find myself standing atop impossibly large arches or bizarre, almost whimsical pillars of stone. I will wander far too close to the edge, but I have little fear, as I am rapt in awe by the splendor of the scene. Only in the landscape around Moab do these dreams ever meld with reality. The scenery here is so otherworldly that it seems precariously balanced on the cusp of fantasy.”


kruse-walkingwithalzheimersWalking with Alzheimer’s:
A Thirty Year Journey
This book by physician Shelly Kruse ’76 is both a personal memoir of her mother’s progressing illness and a guidebook for families and caregivers. EXCERPT: “My mother drove everyone crazy. Her favorite activity was calling out, ‘Help me, help me, help me.’ She sounded sincere and in trouble and would continue however long it took for someone to arrive. After the nurse or myself came running to ask, ‘What’s wrong, Jo?’ she would smile sweetly and reply, ‘Nothing.’ Then a few minutes later, she would do the same thing again.”


_daglow-fogseller1The Fog Seller
This Sausalito-based, literary mystery from Don Daglow ’74, the creator of the Emmy Award–winning Neverwinter Nights, has won a number of awards. EXCERPT: “Liam the Fog Seller stands atop the round concrete bench in the Powell St. BART station, 50 feet below the streets of San Francisco. He wears a black satin top hat, a tuxedo with tails, baggy black pants, neon yellow T-shirt and a diaphanous pale blue scarf. “Ladies and Gentlemen!” he proclaims, drawing a glare from an old Chinese woman sitting nearby. “The trains that roll through this station will take you away from this place and time!”


mayer-rosasverybigjobRosa’s Very Big Job
With illustrations by Sarah Vonthron-Laver, this children’s book by Ellen Mayer ’74, about a spunky preschooler named Rosa who enlists her imaginative grandfather to lend a helping hand to her busy mom, is part of Mayer’s new series of “Small Talk Books,” which are designed to demonstrate practical techniques parents can use to facilitate language development in their children. Other titles in the series include Cake Day, with illustrations by Estelle Corke, and a pair of board-books titled Red Socks and A Fish to Feed, both illustrated by Ying-Hwa Hu.


fleming-legacyofthemoraltaleThe Legacy of the Moral Tale:
Children’s Literature and the English Novel, 1744–1859
Patrick Fleming ’05 traces the rise of the moral tale in children’s literature and its impact upon such authors as Charles Dickens and Maria Edgeworth. EXCERPT: “By the time he wrote Great Expectations, Dickens had changed his didactic narrative style. Unlike his earlier novels, Great Expectations does not take the form of an example illustrating a moral precept, rewarding the virtuous characters and punishing the villains. If Great Expectations is to succeed in its didactic goals, the experience of reading the novel must accomplish this task.”


ronald-alphabetfunAlphabet Fun:
Playing ‘Eye’
In her new children’s book, based on a game she plays with her grandchildren, Alice Ronald ’63 teaches imaginative observation using photographs of found alphabet letters in everyday objects. “When I was little,” she explains, “my father played a game with my brother and me. It was called Playing Eye. We looked for animal shapes in the clouds or slightly different colors and shapes in trees or flowers or rocks. Playing Eye trains young minds to observe and to use the artistic parts of their brains. I am continuing the Playing Eye game with my grandchildren.”


henning-preparingtoteachsocialstudiesPreparing to Teach Social Studies for Social Justice:
Becoming a Renegade
Nick Henning ’95 and co-authors Ruchi Agarwal-Rangnath and Alison Dover offer a guide to teaching justice-oriented social studies classes within the Common Core State Standards. EXCERPT: “Before the beginning of each school year, every teacher is faced with the important content-focused curricular question, “What will I teach?” Embedded within this question are the corollary questions, “What do I want to teach?” and “What am I supposed to teach?” For most justice-oriented teachers in accountability driven classrooms, the answers to these two questions often do not match…”


wogan-peakperformancePeak Performance:
How Denver’s Peak Academy Is Saving Millions of Dollars, Boosting Morale and Just Maybe Changing the World. (And How You Can Too!)
J.B. Wogan ’06 joins co-author Brian Elms, a founding member of Denver’s Peak Academy, to offer a guide to improving organizational performance. EXCERPT: “It’s the small innovations that can transform a process—and the small questions that can cause you to reexamine the way something’s always been done. When you’re looking for an opportunity to innovate, think small, and ask yourself this question: Is there anything you do just because it’s always been done that way?”

Bookmarks Summer 2016



First Words

On Dostoevky’s Introductions

Lewis Bagby ’66, emeritus professor of Russian at the University of Wyoming, examines Fyodor Dostoevsky’s use of forewords to introduce some of his greatest and most challenging works of fiction, from Notes from the Underground to The Brothers Karamozov. Excerpt: “Dostoevsky did not wish to be overtly directive in his fiction. Nor did he wish to poke his nose out of his hole into the great world: in the manner of Gogol’s Rudy Panko. Like his beloved Pushkin, he chose to remain in the background and to allow other voices to speak, not for him, but for themselves.”



Mediterranean Summers

Karen Heath Clark ’66 invites you to join her, her husband and their dog, Roka, on an eight-year Mediterranean adventure aboard their 39-foot trawler. Excerpt: “Roka went with us everywhere. She learned to sit between us on a motorscooter seat. She sat quietly under the table during dinner. She is an expert at taking escalators and elevators and riding buses. She learned to ride in a basket on Bruce’s bike attached behind his seat and trotted on her leash alongside my bike, even in heavy traffic. She seemed to relish her time with us on the boat and the many adventures she experienced.“


Collier’s Guide to Night Photography in the Great Outdoors

Nature photographer Grant Collier ’96 shares his detailed expertise in capturing the beauty of nighttime scenes and the wonders of the heavens with a camera. Excerpt: “I’ve seen many night shots where there is just a flat, dark horizon with the night sky above it. While the sky may be dramatic, the shots are little different from countless other images of the night sky. What really sets a good night photo apart from the others is the foreground. Not only does it make the image more unique, but it can also add depth to an image and draw the viewer into the scene.”


Fairfield’s Auction

A Witherston Murder Mystery

An auction of rare Cherokee artifacts, Appalachian antiques and a young African grey parrot leads to murder in the second Witherston murder mystery by Betty Jean Craige ’68. Excerpt: “Why should this story matter to us Witherstonians? Because those of us living in the twenty-first century have inherited more than money and furniture from our ancestors. And we’ve inherited more than their genes. We have inherited perspectives and prejudices—through the stories we’ve heard at family dinners, the novels we’ve read, the songs we’ve sung.”



Red Flags

A Kate Reilly Mystery

In her fourth mystery about racecar driver Kate Reilly, Tammy Kaehler ’92 offers up another high-octane thriller, this time from the world of Grand Prix racing. Excerpt: “As a driver, I actively listened to the health of my racecar with my entire body. I was attuned to the feel of balanced suspension and a happy engine—in a Corvette C7.R set up for right and left turns. This IndyCar chassis might have a Chevrolet engine, but that was the only similarity. The car felt bent—less so on the banking than on the flat. But still broken.”




21 Days to Resilience

How to Transcend the Daily Grind, Deal with the Tough Stuff, and Discover Your Strongest Self

In this practical self-help guide,

psychologist and health and wellness expert Dr. Zelana Montminy ’04 offers a research-based toolkit to help people develop their capacity to handle whatever life may throw at them. Excerpt: “Hope is our fuel. It’s our choice. Resilient people choose to overcome feelings of hopelessness. They don’t rely on changing experiences or emotions to define their reality. They choose to look forward, to hope.”



America’s Great National Forests, Wildernesses & Grasslands

Professor of Environmental Analysis Char Miller and photographer Tim Palmer create an arresting tome about America’s diverse public lands. Excerpt: “The Sandhills of Nebraska, a vast stretch of rolling prairie in the center of the state, seem an unlikely place for a national forest, let alone one administered in conjunction with the iconic high-elevation forests of the Rocky Mountains. Yet the Nebraska National Forest’s very existence is a perfect reflection of the ambition of late 19th-century and early 20th-century foresters to manage landscapes, treeless or wooded, and make them productive.”



The Babylon Complex

Theopolitical Fantasies of War, Sex, and Sovereignty

Associate Professor of Religious Studies Erin Runions examines the tangled intersection of religion and politics in the U.S., focusing on the ambivalent image of Babel or Babylon. Excerpt: “For those bothered by the increasing diversity that appears within the nation as a result of globalization, Babel is a negative term. For instance, the conservative Pat Buchanan consistently applies the image to complain about difference: that the United States is converting from a Christian nation into the Tower of Babel (1997) or that love of diversity is producing the Tower of Babel and destroying the idea of America (2009).”

The Freedom to Work

Google’s Laszlo Bock ’93 is on a crusade to transform the American workplace.

> read more


What’s Stressing Your Face? coverWhat’s Stressing Your Face?

In this “doctor’s guide to proactive aging and healing,” dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon Dr. Glynis Ablon ’88 discusses a variety of stress-related conditions, from rosacea to hair loss, psoriasis to shingles, along with treatments ranging from psychotherapy to electrical stimulation. (Basic Health Publications, 2015; 184 pages; $15.95)


Ira’s Shakespeare Dream coverIra’s Shakespeare Dream

Glenda Armand  ’75 joins with illustrator Floyd Cooper to tell the true story of Ira Aldridge, an aspiring Black actor who defied convention and prejudice to become one of the most celebrated Shakespearean  actors of the 19th century. (Lee and Low Books, 2015; 40 pages; $18.95)


Leopards at My DoorLeopards at My Door cover

Harriet Denison ’65 recalls her adventurous years in the Peace Corps during the mid-1960s, teaching at the Bwiru Girls’ Secondary School in Tanzania (where she had regular visits from leopards and an array of other wildlife), and later on, her work with Mother Teresa in Calcutta, India, treating people afflicted with leprosy. (Peace Corps Writers, 2014; 252 pages; $15.00)


Nelson MandelaNelson Mandela cover

In her second book for young readers, Beatrice Gormley ’64 offers a moving biography of South African civil rights activist, long-time political prisoner, author, Nobel Prize winner and eventually President Nelson Mandela, exploring the man behind the iconic smile—his struggles, his triumphs, and the sacrifices he had to make along the way. (Alladin, 2015; 256 pages; $17.99)


Our Dried VoicesOur Dried Voices cover

This science fiction novel by Greg Hickey ’08 offers a vision of a far-distant future in which colonists on a planet called Pearl, where there is no longer any need for human labor, conflict or thought, suddenly find themselves struggling with the sabotage of the machines that their utopian lives depend upon. (Scribe Publishing Co, 2015; 234 pages; $13.99)


The Panchen Lama’s Debate Between Wisdom and the Reifying HabitThe Panchen Lama’s Debate Between Wisdom and the Reifying Habit cover

Kenneth Liberman ’70 spent a decade translating the principal work of the renowned first Panchen Lama, Lobsang Chökyi Gyaltsen (1570–1662), styled as a witty philosophical text employing the tension between shes rabs (wisdom) and bdag ’dzin (the reifying habit) as dramatic characters. (Motilal Banarsidass, India, 2014; 224 pages; $35.00)


Loving LA the Low Carbon WayLoving LA the Low Carbon Way cover

Grace Moremen ’52 and Jacqueline Chase offer a guide to the City of Angels by Metrolink, subway, light rail and bus, with 24 adventures that include such destinations as the Griffith Observatory, Watts Towers, the Observation Deck at City Hall, the Tar Pits and many other treasures hidden in plain sight. (Dream Boat Press, 2015; 230 pages; $15.00)


The Best Kind of CollegeThe Best Kind of College cover

Subtitled “An Insiders’ Guide to America’s Small Liberal Arts Colleges,” this set of essays, edited by Pomona Professors Susan McWilliams and John E. Seery, makes the case for the continuing importance of small, residential liberal arts colleges as a key part of America’s higher education smorgasbord. (SUNY Press, 2015; 314 pages; $80.00)


Daily Life in Wartime Japan, 1940–1945Daily Life in Wartime Japan, 1940–1945 cover

Pomona Professor Samuel Yamashita’s new book puts a human face on wartime Japan, with an intimate picture of what life was like for ordinary Japanese during the war. Drawing upon diaries and letters written by

servicemen, kamikaze pilots, evacuated children and many others, he lets us hear the rich mix of voices speaking during the course of the war. (University Press of Kansas, 2016; 256 pages; $29.95)


All the fun stuff from campus: Pomona College tidbits, traditions, lore and more.

Cecil Skateboarding