Book reviews

Check out the latest reviews of University of Minnesota Press books.
The Atlantic: The Logic of the Filing Cabinet Is Everywhere.
A captivating new history helps us see the humble appliance’s sweeping influence on modern life.
The New Yorker: Timothy Morton's Hyper-Pandemic.
For the philosopher of “hyperobjects”—vast, unknowable things that are bigger than ourselves—the coronavirus is further proof that we live in a dark ecology.
This is Hell! podcast: Hierarchy, division and filing cabinets at the dawn of the information age.
Media studies scholar Craig Robertson on the filing cabinet's work at the dawn of 20th century capitalism, the consequences of a logic centered around division and efficiency, and his book The Filing Cabinet: A Vertical History of Information from University of Minnesota Press.
Reader's Digest: Life with an icon
Prince's longtime bassist, Mark Brown, on what it was like to play, laugh and work with The Purple One. Mark Brown went from playing bass to 50 people in the local bars and clubs of Minneapolis, to being renamed “BrownMark” by Prince, and supporting The Rolling Stones on his debut.
How can U just leave me standing? ...in search of Prince Rogers Nelson.
Podcast interview with BrownMark, author of My Life in the Purple Kingdom, with Sam Bleazard.
New Books in European Studies: Conversation with Alison Mountz
The Death of Asylum: Hidden Geographies of the Enforcement Archipelago (University of Minnesota Press, 2020) arrives at an extraordinarily consequential moment for the future of asylum protections.
Public Seminar: The PMC Has Children
From the very moment of conception, which for professional managerial class (PMC) parents is always a “choice,” the future child and infant possesses “potential” that has to be both optimized and maximized.
Fox 9: New picture book tells inspiring tale of brave kids in refugee camp.
Award-winning Minnesota author Kao Kalia Yang is out with a brand new picture book with illustrator Billy Thao. "Yang Warriors" tells the real-life story of a group of young cousins in a refugee camp. The Buzz got a chance to chat with Yang and Thao about their beautiful and inspiring new work.
KPFA Against the Grain: Community-Level Counterterrorism
“Countering violent extremism” is a U.S. government program aimed at combatting homegrown terrorism. It enlists teachers, service providers, and religious leaders to monitor and report on young people deemed vulnerable to terrorist radicalization. But according to Nicole Nguyen, CVE asks teachers and others to take on policing functions and criminalizes Muslim youth.
Disability Studies Quarterly: "A timely and provocative contribution to the rich literature on biopolitics from which it draws."
At its core, Deadly Biocultures is about challenging binaries using the inherent contradictions found within the myriad manifestations of those binaries in US biocultures.
Youth Services Book Review 5+ rating: "Perfect for a springtime read aloud for kindergarten through 3rd grade or higher."
This is a good one-on-one choice where it could be examined over and over again but would also be perfect for a springtime read aloud for kindergarten through 3rd grade or even higher. 5+ rating.
Outside Magazine: This Veteran Paddler Says Teenage Girls Need Adventure
Author Natalie Warren wants young women to disregard conventional rites of passage and get lost in the wilderness
Colors of Influence: "An absolute gift of awakening."
Renowned writer and activist Leanne Betasamosake Simpson offers an absolute gift of awakening through “Noopiming: The Cure for White Ladies.”
Curious Minnesota: Where did suburban streetcar lines run and why were they removed?
At its peak, Twin City Rapid Transit had 524 miles of track and car­ried 200 mil­lion rid­ers each year.
Daily Dose of Architecture: Focusing on middle-class American houses.
By honing in on that substantial yet overlooked chunk of society between the rich and the poor, Hubka is setting his book apart from the hundreds, if not thousands, of books on American houses.
Kare 11: What are your kids reading?
Gia Vang talks with Kao Kalia Yang and Billy Thao.
Nursing Clio: Trans Care Webs
Hil Malatino’s Trans Care asks a seemingly simple question: What does care look like in trans lives?
The Guardian: 'Trans kids are not new': a historian on the long record of youth transitioning in America
Republicans seeking to restrict children’s lives claim trans youth are a ‘new phenomenon’. Jules Gill-Peterson explains how medical archives prove them wrong
NPR: Our Own People
As hate crimes against Asian American Pacific Islanders surge, Throughline reflects on Yuri Kochiyama's ideas around the Asian American struggle, and what solidarity and intersectionality can mean for all struggles.
Edge Effects: The COVID-19 Pandemic and the National Borders of the Imagination
A year after COVID-19 was declared a pandemic, scientists and medical practitioners have a clearer picture of the virus. Yet one the biggest challenges that this crisis has posed for many of us is, no doubt, the difficulty of making sense of it. From the unclear origin of the virus to the variety of symptoms it presents to its “invisibility,” COVID-19 has kept a majority of us in the dark.
Community Reporter: The Intersectional Feminist of Early 20th Century St. Paul
The onetime honorary president of the Minnesota Federation of Colored Women’s Clubs, Francis worked to convince nationally renowned intellectuals such as W.E.B. DuBois, Booker T. Washington, and Ida B. Wells-Barnett to campaign for the cause of women’s suffrage in Minnesota.
Taipei Times: How pirated records from Taiwan kept Asia rocking
By the mid-1960s, the nation was churning out around 350,000 of them a month, many of which were diffused to Vietnam, Japan, Korea, Thailand and the Philippines
Washington Post: China’s rapid urbanization will make another pandemic more likely
Nick R. Smith reads between the lines of the new World Health Organization report on the coronavirus
Native America Calling: Noopiming is Book of the Month
In “Noopiming: The Cure for White Ladies,” seven beings within one entity named Mashkawaji help the narrative along through literary prose, dialogue and poetry.
Jezebel: The Visionary Organizer Who Offered Me a Model for Life
Grace Lee Boggs died in 2015 at the age of 100, having inspired generations of activists and organizers.
Kirkus Reviews: A powerful tale about finding purpose and strength in the face of extreme adversity.
In the bleak Ban Vinai Refugee Camp, a brave group of young Hmong children, all cousins, rises up to help those they love.
Bookforum: A constellation of books that teach us to reimagine the present
Leanne Betasamosake Simpson's syllabus for Bookforum. The works below can teach us how to encounter them if we pay attention. These writings refuse whiteness and colonialism by breaking open space, making room for worlds otherwise. This is world-building work, and these books’ exploratory nature makes them similar, in some sense, to speculative fiction. But these texts arise from and are rooted in the lived experiences of Black, Brown, and Indigenous peoples. The worlds they envision allow us to see the present—and the past—anew, and are life-giving precisely because they refuse the efforts by white supremacy, heteropatriarchy, and capitalism to undermine them. They offer a study on how to read, or how to read differently, or perhaps how to listen.
Aufhebunga Bunga podcast: The Worst Class ft. Catherine Liu
Catherine Liu joins us to talk about the worst class in history (the PMC), and how and why they hoard all forms of secularised value. We discuss the development of the PMC as a class, figure out when it stopped being "heroic", and debate who the PMC'S leader might be. We conclude by asking whether the Left needs the PMC (or vice versa?).
"This substantial picture book narrative is graced by vivid, beautifully rendered details."
After her family gets electricity, The Range Eternal stove is replaced by a modern stove that doesn’t require tending, but clearly something is lost, too, in story that ends with the now-adult adult narrator finding the stove of her childhood in a thrift store and bringing it home to share the vision and history found in its flames, and the warmth of its heart with her family.
Seven beings serve as Mashkawaji, a fabulous creature that is frozen in ice, in this extraordinary novel.
How does one write a novel in static English language using material that is derived from a dynamic system of Indigenous oral storytelling and performance? Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, who is a member of the Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg people of southern Ontario, uses a combination of genres — poetry, literary prose and dialogue — in her most recent novel, "Noopiming."

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