New Books Network

Rae Linda Brown, “Heart of a Woman: The Life and Music of Florence B. Price” (U Illinois Press, 2020)
In 1933, the Chicago Symphony performed the Symphony in E Minor by Florence B. Price. It was the first time a major American orchestra played a composition by an African American woman. Despite her success, Price sank into obscurity after her death in 1953. Dr. Rae Linda Brown spent much... Read More
Karen Patel, “The Politics of Expertise in Cultural Labour: Arts, Work and Inequalities” (Rowman and Littlefield, 2020)
How has social media changed inequality in the cultural industries? In The Politics of Expertise in Cultural Labour: Arts, Work and Inequalities (Rowman and Littlefield, 2020), Karen Patel, AHRC Leadership Fellow based at Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural Research, Birmingham City University, considers the idea of expertise in cultural... Read More
Barry Witham, “From Red-Baiting to Blacklisting: The Labor Plays of Manny Fried” (SIU Press 2020)
From Red-Baiting to Blacklisting: The Labor Plays of Manny Fried (SIU Press 2020) collects three plays by Manny Fried alongside a thorough explanation of his work and life by theatre scholar Barry Witham. Witham traces Fried’s long career as a labor organizer and Communist Party militant, as well as the... Read More
Jennifer Atkins, “New Orleans Carnival Balls: The Secret Side of Mardi Gras, 1870-1920” (LSU Press, 2017)
In New Orleans Carnival Balls: The Secret Side of Mardi Gras, 1870-1920 (LSU Press, 2017), Dr. Jennifer Atkins draws back the curtain on the origin of the exclusive Mardi Gras balls, bringing to light unique traditions unseen by outsiders. The oldest Carnival organizations emerged in the mid-nineteenth century and ruled... Read More
Caridad Svich, “Mitchell and Trask’s Hedwig and the Angry Inch” (Routledge, 2019)
Mitchell and Trask’s Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Routledge, 2019) is Caridad Svich’s love letter to the 1998 musical that introduced the world to its favorite East German ex-pat genderqueer rock star, Hedwig. A tribute both to the New York that spawned the musical and the glam rock that inspired... Read More
Sunny Stalter-Pace, “Imitation Artist: Gertrude Hoffman’s Life in Vaudeville and Dance” (Northwestern UP, 2020)
Gertrude Hoffman is one of many entertainers who were big stars in vaudeville before World War I, but whose celebrity faded as the American public was seduced by radio and film after the Great War. Sunny Stalter-Pace recounts Hoffmann’s groundbreaking career and contextualizes her work as a dancer, comedienne, producer,... Read More
Vanita Reddy, “Fashioning Diaspora: Beauty, Femininity and South Asian American Culture” (Temple UP, 2016)
Vanita Reddy, in her book Fashioning Diaspora: Beauty, Femininity and South Asian American Culture (Temple University Press, 2016), locates diasporic transnationality, affiliations and intimacies through the analytic of beauty. Through her analysis of Asian American literary fiction and performance artwork and installations, Reddy lingers on moments, objects and subjective positions that reveal the potentiality of beauty. Not just... Read More
Kevin J. Bryne, “Minstrel Traditions: Mediated Blackface in the Jazz Age” (Routledge, 2020)
The Blackface minstrel show is typically thought of a form tied to the 19th century. While the style was indeed developed during the Antebellum period, its history stretches well into  20th- and even 21st-century America. Far from being the endpoint posited by much of the existing literature on the topic,... Read More
Mary Kathryn Nagle, “Sovereignty” (Northwestern UP, 2020)
In Sovereignty (Northwestern University Press, 2020) playwright Mary Kathryn Nagle weaves together two stories separated by 170 years but joined by a common dilemma: how can Cherokee people fight for justice under an unjust colonial legal framework? In present-day Oklahoma, Sarah Ridge Polson attempts to bring her abuser to justice... Read More