The Magazine lists a selection of general interest books, films, and albums by alumni. For additional alumni releases, browse the Magazine’s Goodreads bookshelf.
Ernst Kantorowicz: A Life
Robert E. Lerner, AB’60
The German-Jewish historian Ernst Kantorowicz is best known for his classic study of medieval political theology, The King’s Two Bodies (1957). His own life was shaped by the tumult of history and politics: once an avowed German nationalist who fought in World War I, Kantorowicz became a vocal critic of the Nazis and fled Germany after Kristallnacht. At the University of California, Berkeley, Kantorowicz was fired when he refused to sign an anticommunist loyalty oath; he spent the rest of his career at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey. In a new biography, Northwestern University medieval historian Robert E. Lerner chronicles the life and thought of this singular scholar and historical figure.
Crimes Against a Book Club
Kathy Cooperman, AB’93
In search of quick cash to support their families, best friends Annie and Sarah cook up a devious plan to sell a “miracle” antiaging skin cream to the wealthy women in Annie’s book club. But a seemingly harmless plan takes a risky turn when she adds a secret—and illegal—ingredient to the formula.
Pious Fashion: How Muslim Women Dress
Elizabeth Bucar, AM’01, PhD’06
How do Muslim women decide what to wear? Religious ethicist Elizabeth Bucar challenges the perception of head scarves and other traditional dress as oppressive, arguing that many Muslim women find aesthetic pleasure and opportunities for self-expression in their clothing choices. Pious Fashion examines the experiences of women in Iran, Indonesia, and Turkey, as well as the burgeoning global market for fashion aimed at hijabis.
Whiplash: How to Survive Our Faster Future
Joi Ito, EX’90
The future has arrived, and it’s moving faster than our ability to understand it, write Joi Ito, director of the MIT Media Lab, and Wired contributing editor Jeff Howe. In Whiplash they offer nine organizing principles to help individuals and organizations navigate our digital world’s new “operating system,” such as embracing risk and maintaining a “culture of creative disobedience.”
Passion Projects for Smart People: Turn Your Intellectual Pursuits Into Fun, Profit, and Recognition
Michael R. Wing, AB’85
A guidebook for the overeducated and underemployed, Passion Projects for Smart People provides strategies for nurturing your side projects and translating them into book deals, museum exhibitions, and teaching opportunities. Michael Wing, a high school science teacher who’s done field work all over the world, explains how to apply for grants, get published, partner with museums and other institutions, and more.
Eve L. Ewing, AB’08
In her debut collection of poetry, prose, and illustration, Eve Ewing celebrates and reimagines the
lives of African American luminaries including LeBron James, Prince, and blues legend Koko Taylor. “The Arrival,” a poem riffing on
Assata Shakur’s assertion that “black revolutionaries do not drop from the moon,” describes the sudden arrival of extraterrestrial liberators bringing “the promised light, descended to us at last.” Suffused with magical realism, Electric Arches explores race, life in Chicago, and the complex path from girlhood to womanhood.
Anthony Madrid, PhD’12
The 17 poems in Try Never are based on englyn, a rhyming Welsh poetic form dating back to the 14th century. Full of humor and surprise, Anthony Madrid’s updated englyns offer riddle-like wisdom, as in “Cold Spring,” which concludes, “Redbud puts out a violet petal. / What settles disputes revives them.”