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CAMPUS AUTHORS: Bejel, Simpson and Berman


Two faculty members are scheduled to give book presentations on campus this week, and a third can be seen on video, talking about his new book.

Book cover: Marti

Emilio Bejel, distinguished professor of Spanish, José Martí: Images of Memory and Mourning — Exploring how visual images of Martí, a 19th-century Cuban national hero, have seduced people across ideologies and have figured in Cuban history and culture. Bejel is critical of the ways in which governments and political and civic groups have exploited this iconography for their own political agendas. "Rigorously researched, theoretically sophisticated, this groundbreaking book will certainly remain as an authoritative and persuasive study of Marti’s iconicity in relation to state power and ideology," wrote Leopoldo M. Bernucci, the Russell F. and Jean H. Fiddyment Chair in Latin American Studies at UC Davis. "A must-read," he added. Bejel, a Cuban-born poet, critic and narrator, is the author of several books on literary and cultural criticism, as well as poetry. Presentation, noon today (Jan. 23), 273 Social sciences and Humanities Building.

Book cover: Question of the Stranger

David Simpson, the G.B. Needham Distinguished Professor of English, Romanticism and the Question of the Stranger — Simpson calls to mind post-9/11 and homeland security fears and practices, pointing out that the view of the stranger as the enemy is not new to the early 21st century. Rather, he shows that debates about the stranger loomed large throughout history. "As in his earlier work (9/11: The Culture of Commemoration), Simpson writes at once as a prominent literary scholar and an incisive public intellectual, and in both capacities, he issues a forceful warning against failing to ‘reckon with the stranger,’ whether by acts of exclusion, by making distinctions and patrolling their boundaries, or by suspecting the stranger from outside while failing to recognize the strangeness and estrangement inside— within the self, home or homeland," wrote Kevis Goodwin, associate professor of English, UC Berkeley. Presentation, noon-1:30 p.m. Friday (Jan. 25), lounge inside the main bookstore, Memorial Union.

Book cover: Zumwalt

Larry Berman, professor emeritus of political science, Zumwalt: The Life and Times of Admiral Elmo Russell "Bud" Zumwalt Jr. — Bill Clinton, Donna Shalala and Thurgood Marshall Jr. are among those offering praise for Berman’s book. Wrote former President Clinton: "You can’t understand today’s Navy without acknowledging Bud Zumwalt’s role in modernizing its technology and renewing its soul. He believed deeply in a strong Navy worthy of our great nation, and that anyone who chose to serve in it was deserving of respect and dignity. Zumwalt is the story of a true American hero.” Marvin Kalb, the Edward R. Murrow Professor Emeritus at Harvard, wrote: “Zumwalt may be Larry Berman’s best book on Vietnam. Exhaustively researched, beautifully written, here is the war through the prism of one of America’s greatest officers." Watch Berman’s presentation at the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, D.C., as recorded by Book TV (carried on C-SPAN2).

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