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Pagan Light: Dreams of Freedom and Beauty in Capri


By Jamie James ’73. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, March 2019. Available on Amazon. Grounded in a deep intimacy with Capri and full of captivating anecdotes, Jamie James’s Pagan Light tells how a tiny island served as a wildly permissive haven for people―queer, criminal, sick, marginalized, and simply crazy―who had nowhere else to go.


What We Are Made Of


Book cover for What We Are Made Of

Laurie Elizabeth Lambert ’80. Finishing Line Press, January 2019. “What are we made of?” is the question posed by Laurie Elizabeth Lambert in these poems of nature, family, loss, and redemption. Organized by the seasons, Lambert reminds us that in spite of the darkness, our world contains trout lilies, trilliums, great blue herons, bluebirds, cardinals, … Continue reading “What We Are Made Of”


Williams College: The Campus Guide


Cover of the book Williams College Campus Guide

Eugene J. Johnson, Amos Lawrence Professor of Art, Emeritus and Michael J. Lewis, Faison-Pierson-Stoddard Professor of Art. Princeton Architectural Press, December 2018. Available on Amazon. Nestled in the Berkshire Mountains in western Massachusetts, Williams College routinely ranks atop the best liberal arts colleges in the United States. The 450-acre campus, master-planned by the esteemed Olmsted … Continue reading “Williams College: The Campus Guide”


Breakfast with Einstein: The Exotic Physics of Everyday Objects


Book cover for Breakfast with Einstein: The Exotic Physics of Everyday Objects

Chad Orzel ’93. BenBella Books, December 2018. Available on Amazon. In this book, Chad Orzel illuminates the strange phenomena lurking just beneath the surface of our ordinary lives by digging into the surprisingly complicated physics involved in his (and anyone’s) morning routine. Orzel, author of How to Teach Quantum Physics to Your Dog, explores how … Continue reading “Breakfast with Einstein: The Exotic Physics of Everyday Objects”


Jews: Nearly Everything You Wanted To Know But Were Too Afraid To Ask


Book cover for Jews: Nearly Everything You Wanted to Know.

Peter Cave and Dan Cohn-Sherbok ’66. Equinox Publishing Ltd., November 2018. Who are the Jews? What do they believe? Why is Israel so important to them? What’s all this about self-hating Jews? These are just some of the questions that engage a Reform rabbi and a Humanist philosopher in their lively and intriguing conversations. From … Continue reading “Jews: Nearly Everything You Wanted To Know But Were Too Afraid To Ask”


Before the Mayflower


Book cover the Before the Mayflower.

Jennifer (Hallett) Sinsigalli, ’96. Choir Alley Press, November 2018. Available on Amazon. If you were living in civilized places like England or the Netherlands, why would you consider boarding the Mayflower, bound for the New World? The Atlantic crossing would be a nightmare, with the threat of storms, pirates, and cramped and dark conditions. Even … Continue reading “Before the Mayflower”


None Like Us: Blackness, Belonging Aesthetic Life


Book cover for None Like Us

Stephen Best ’89. Duke University Press, November 2018. It passes for an unassailable truth that the slave past provides an explanatory prism for understanding the black political present. In None Like Us Stephen Best reappraises what he calls “melancholy historicism”—a kind of crime scene investigation in which the forensic imagination is directed toward the recovery … Continue reading “None Like Us: Blackness, Belonging Aesthetic Life”


The Once and Future Worker


Cover of a book called the Once and Future Worker

Oren Cass ’05. Encounter Books, November 2018. Available on Amazon. The American worker is in crisis. Wages have stagnated for more than a generation. Reliance on welfare programs has surged. Life expectancy is falling as substance abuse and obesity rates climb. In this groundbreaking re-evaluation of American society, economics, and public policy, Oren Cass challenges … Continue reading “The Once and Future Worker”


Abiding Grace: Time, Modernity, Death


Cover for the book Abiding Grace

Mark Taylor, Cluett Professor of Humanities, Emeritus. The University of Chicago Press, 2018. Post-war, post-industrialism, post-religion, post-truth, post-biological, post-human, post-modern. What succeeds the post- age? Mark C. Taylor returns here to some of his central philosophical preoccupations and asks: What comes after the end?


From the Cast-Iron Shore: In Lifelong Pursuit of Liberal Learning


Book cover of From the Cast-Iron Shore

Francis Oakley, Edward Dorr Griffin Professor of the History of Ideas, Emeritus; President, Emeritus; and Senior Oakley Fellow. University of Notre Dame Press, 2018. Available on Amazon. From the Cast-Iron Shore is part personal memoir and part participant-observer’s educational history. As president emeritus at Williams College in Massachusetts, Francis Oakley details its progression from a … Continue reading “From the Cast-Iron Shore: In Lifelong Pursuit of Liberal Learning”