Cambria Press Publication Review: Contemporary Chicana Literature

Congratulations to Professor Cristina Herrera of California State University, Fresno, on the outstanding review of her book, Contemporary Chicana Literature: (Re)Writing the Maternal Script, by the Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature.

Contemporary Literature

The book review commends Contemporary Chicana Literature because:

“In the field of mothering and motherhood studies, there is a lack of literature which specifically focuses on the mother-daughter relationship in Chicana Studies. Cristina Herrera’s Contemporary Chicana Literature: (Re)Writing the Maternal Script fills this void in literary scholarship by examining a diverse array of Chicana writers that push the boundaries of maternal relationships. The text is a welcome addition to the canon, especially since it goes beyond the limited interpretations of Chicana mother-daughter relationships, motherhood, and mothering and recognizes the intersectionality of race, gender, sexuality, socioeconomics, and religion in shaping the relationship between Chicana mothers and daughters. With its widely interdisciplinary literary, cultural, religious, and historical sources, this book gives readers some much-needed critical perspectives and Herrera should be commended for her notable effort. … By challenging the limited models of Chicana mother-daughter relationships that frequently dictate the analysis of Chicana literature, Herrera presents a fresh paradigm to the ensuing discussion of Chicana literary scholarship. She recognizes that Chicana mothering, like society, is changing and that it is time the academy understands this broad scope. In doing so, she succeeds in rewriting Chicana mother-daughter relationships and forming a new space of reexamining representations of Chicana mothers and daughters.”

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Forthcoming: Buddhist Transformations and Interactions

The following is an announcement from Dr. Victor H. Mair, Professor of  Chinese Language and Literature at the University of Pennsylvania and general editor of the Cambria Sinophone World Series.

Buddhist Studies

“It is with great pleasure that I announce the forthcoming publication of Buddhist Transformations and Interactions: Essays in Honor of Antonino Forte (Cambria Press, 2017).  We have chosen today to make this announcement because it is the tenth anniversary of Nino’s passing on July 22, 2016.

This tome is unusual in the way that it assembles the research of distinguished scholars from various fields and regions. All these scholars knew Professor Forte personally and were influenced by his scholarship. Seldom does one find the combination of spatial breadth, temporal depth, and conceptual rigor that is found in Buddhist Transformations and Interactions.  The twelve chapters in this book exemplify the method and principles of Antonino Forte’s own work and will provide readers with a much better appreciation and understanding of East Asian Buddhism.

The individual chapters and their authors are listed in the table of contents and the aims of the work as a whole are presented in the book description.

It is our intention to hold a roundtable focused on Buddhist Transformations and Interactions at the next Association for Asian Studies meeting, which will be held in Toronto from March 16-19, 2017.  The book will be launched at the AAS conference.”

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China’s Response to Territorial Disputes

The Economist recently reported that “the Permanent Court of Arbitration, an international tribunal in The Hague, has declared China’s “historic claims” in the South China Sea invalid. It was an unexpectedly wide-ranging and clear-cut ruling, and it has enraged China.” As the region and the United States anxiously await China’s response, Colonel Thomas Drohan’s new book, A New Strategy for Complex Warfare: Combined Effects in East Asia, provides useful insights in gauging China’s possible reactions.

East Asia Warfare Strategy

The book’s concept of combined effects warfare shows how Chinese strategy in East Asia is so effective against the combined arms-heavy approach of the US such as in recent “rebalancing,” relative weaknesses in the key US-Japan alliance and mounting Chinese capabilities account for the timing of Chinese actions; and Chinese security culture explains why China pursues a strategy of blending confrontation with cooperation. It explains contemporary China’s combined-effects approach to complex warfare, specifically which includes the kind of persistent reexpansion we are seeing in the South China Sea:

“Current operations seek to fragment rivals on China’s borders and occupy China-claimed territories with complex invasions…Party operations play an existential role in constructing and justifying both an intuitive moral order and a central authority. Major combined-effects offensives include:

  1. a) Military, economic, and political operations to reorient Taiwan toward the mainland
  2. b) Diplomatic partnering with the Soviet Union, then conducting ideological warfare against it
  3. c) Support of Vietnam, and then warfare against it to ensure cliental loyalty to China
  4. d) Seizure of disputed Southeast Asian territory while expanding ties with claimants
  5. e) Incursions in Japan-claimed territory while increasing ties with Japan and the U.S.
  6. f) Maritime reclamation (dredging) operations create, occupy, and militarize new territory.

China’s leaders value holistic, sustainable operations, consistent with the assumption that threats are permanent and any elimination of them are temporary…”

The book also explains how how the limitations of of the US-Japan alliance empower China’s combined-effect strategy in the South China Sea.

“However, the limits of the US-Japan alliance–such as restricting Japanese defense to its own territory– facilitate China’s desired combined effect. Thus, China does not have to integrate its problematic effects of masking its predatory intent while increasing its military-economic strength, stirring anti-Japanese nationalism that does not empower Chinese democracy, and isolating Japan from US intervention, as long as Japan and the United States are complying with these effects anyway.”

In addition, the book helpfully explains why China’s strategy emphasizes military and economic confrontation (in the South China Sea)– while at the same time claiming to be all about harmony and peace as China follows up the UN Tribunals ruling again them with threats to establish an ADIZ and use all of that to “negotiate” its expanding new normal.

“Chinese security culture can help us understand continuity in Chinese strategies and why elites cannot afford to fold in the face of foreign pressure if they are to retain domestic influence. Confrontational sovereignty claims trump tangible benefits of cooperative interdependence. Moral order, central authority, and territorial integrity persist as highly valued interests, particularly among China’s single-Party leadership. So while modernization has strengthened national capabilities, it has also increased national willpower. When China has had the capability to engage other powers as an equal or more, it has done so. We can infer that military equality is the PLA’s precondition for expanding military-to-military relations with the U.S. The loss of ideological sovereignty in the past has become the consensus threat to national security. Ideological sovereignty is closely connected to economic nationalism.”

A New Strategy for Complex Warfare: Combined Effects in East Asia is part of the  Rapid Communications in Conflict and Security (RCCS) Series, headed by Dr. Geoffrey R. H. Burn.

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Cambria Press New Publication: The Fiction of Thea Astley

Cambria Press is pleased to announce a new publication The Fiction of Thea Astley by Susan Sheridan.

This book is in the Cambria Australian Literature Series, headed by Dr. Susan Lever.

This book will be launched at the upcoming 2016 Association for the Study of Australian Literature conference hosted by UNSW Canberra at ADFA.

The following are excerpts from the new book.

Thea Astley

From the introduction:
“This oppositional stance—in relation to the Church, and in relation to the nation and the colonialism on which it was founded—fed into Astley’s critique of other social institutions and practices. Her work is driven by a moral revulsion against greed and corruption, against class prejudice and the cruelties practiced on social outsiders, against the racism of colonial dispossession and exploitation of Indigenous people, and against the presumption of male superiority and the physical and psychic violence practiced against women.”

From Chapter 3:
“By the time she published Beachmasters, in 1986, Astley had developed a political perspective on colonialism that allowed her to move beyond disillusionment with human relationships structured by marriage, or human relationship to the divine as structured by the Church, to a critique of the structures themselves. This novel takes colonialism as its subject, rather than assuming its presence, and depicts expatriates and indigenous people inhabiting the same socio-political space, drawing out the complications of hapkas familial and cultural identity. Such a perspective on power structures, as we shall see in later chapters, comes to inform her representation of gender and sexual relations as well as colonial race relations, providing a strong intellectual foundation for her intensely imagined fictions.”

From Chapter 7:
“With Drylands, her final novel, Astley returns to the present day and a setting in a small north Queensland inland town of that name. […]The stories are framed by the narrative of Janet Deakin (a name suggesting she is a descendant of one of Australia’s founding fathers, Alfred Deakin) […] The stories, including Janet’s own, are all tales of violence, of behavior which ranges from the verbal sneers that Janet suffers, through to domestic violence and attempted rape. Another woman is victim not to violence but to domestic servitude to her husband and six sons. In this book, Astley’s feisty feminist barbs at marriage as an institution of male privilege and female slavery recur (‘Is it a boy or a drudge?’ asks Janet’s mother when she is born, 103) but the predominant theme is masculine violence.”

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Cambria Press Publication Review: The Construction of Femininity in a Postcolonial State

Cambria Press Review

Congratulations to Dr. Kho Ee Moi of the National Institute of Education (Singapore) on the outstanding review of her book, The Construction of Femininity in a Postcolonial State: Girls’ Education in Singapore, by the journal Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education.

The book review states: “Kho examines issues of gender equality with a penetrating and critical eye. In this study, she explores the contradictions over time of the goevernment’s socialization goals and in the messages they sought to send about what it means to be a female in Singapore. … Readers interested in the role of schools in constructing ideology, as well as those interested in the development of Singapore, will find this an engaging and well-written book.”

 

 

First step to #EndTheDivide is #SeekingBipartsanship

#Bipartisanship

“The ideological divide between the parties, enflamed by the sense of partisan superiority claimed by both sides, produced legislative gridlock. There were no winners. We need to get back to an America where Congress solves problems, passes a farm bill, passes an immigration bill, passes tax reform, passes a budget. It is possible. We proved it during Bill Clinton’s administration when a Republican Congress joined a Democratic president to pass three budgets and welfare reform.” – Secretary Ray LaHood and Dr. Frank Mackaman, Seeking Bipartisanship

Cambria Press Book Launch: Pedro Zamora, Sexuality, and AIDS Education

Cambria Press is proud to announce the publication of Pedro Zamora, Sexuality, and AIDS Education: The Autobiographical Self, Activism, and The Real World by Christopher Pullen. We are honored that the book will be launched on June 14 at the GLBT Historical Society Archives and Museum. Dr. Pullen will be flying into San Francisco for the event to speak about his book.

LGBT

Pedro Zamora was an openly gay AIDS activist of Cuban descent, who became a worldwide media phenomenon, particularly after his participation in The Real World television documentary series, set in San Francisco in 1994, where he openly represented his life as a person living with AIDS. Although Zamora passed away the same year he was on The Real World at only twenty-two years old, his life story continues to be an important contribution to contemporary debates on AIDS education, given how he was such an icon for sexual diversity.

Offering a comprehensive biographical narrative which brings together a wide range of media sources, including not only close examination of The Real World television series itself, the biographical film Pedro, educational documentaries to which Zamora contributed, and news reports from The Miami Herald, The Wall Street Journal, and POZ Magazine, key elements of Zamora’s story are brought together for the first time.

Chris Holmlund, Arts and Sciences Excellence Professor of Cinema Studies, Women’s Studies and French, University of Tennessee; and author of Impossible Bodies, praises the book:

“Documenting gay Cuban American activist Pedro Zamora’s appearances onscreen, in person, and in print, Pedro Zamora, Sexuality, and AIDS Education reflects on the power of mediated autobiography and testifies to the ongoing importance of working together to combat HIV/AIDS and injustice. Informed by the assessments of 1980s and 1990s AIDs activism offered by Alex Juhasz, José Esteban Muñoz, Simon Watney, Roger Hallas, Randy Shilts, Paul Monette, Marlon Riggs, and others, Pullen’s study details how the good-looking Zamora became a skilled educator who excelled at reaching out to youth, especially queer youth, and people of color. Diagnosed as HIV-positive at the age of seventeen, Zamora learned how to be charismatically convincing, conjoining vulnerability, transparency, sincerity, warmth and strength. His articulately “out” role on MTV’s 1994 reality show, The Real World: San Francisco, was a highlight; sadly, he died that same year, aged only twenty-two. Kudos to Pullen for so eloquently marshaling Pedro Zamora’s life, work, and love, for the present, toward the future.”

This book is in the Cambria Global Performing Arts Series headed by John M. Clum (Duke University).

GLBT