Sowing the American Dream · How Consumer Culture Took Root in the Rural Midwest · By David Blanke

From 1840 to 1900, midwestern Americans experienced firsthand the profound economic, cultural, and structural changes that transformed the nation from a premodern, agrarian state to one that was urban, industrial, and economically interdependent. Midwestern commercial farmers found themselves at the heart of these changes. Their actions and reactions led to the formation of a distinctive and particularly democratic consumer ethos, which is still being played out today.

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My Sisters Telegraphic · Women in the Telegraph Office, 1846–1950 · By Thomas C. Jepsen

The role of the telegraph operator in the mid-nineteenth century was like that of today’s software programmer/analyst, according to independent scholar Tom Jepsen, who notes that in the “cyberspace” of long ago, male operators were often surprised to learn that the “first-class man” on the other end of the wire was a woman. Like the computer, the telegraph caused a technological revolution.

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West Virginia Quilts and Quiltmakers · Echoes from the Hills · By Fawn Valentine

Tucked away in the Appalachian Mountains of West Virginia, preserved for generations, handmade bed quilts are windows into the past. In 1983, three West Virginia county extension agents discussed the need to locate and document their state's historic quilts. Mary Nell Godbey, Margaret Meador, and Mary Lou Schmidt joined with other concerned women to found the West Virginia Heritage Quilt Search.

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The European Union · From Jean Monnet to the Euro · Edited by Dean Kotlowski

The transformation of Europe since the end of World War II has been astounding. In 1945, a battle–scarred continent lay in ruins. Today, it has achieved a level of integration, prosperity, and stability that few people could have anticipated. The life and career of the French statesman Jean Monnet and the recent adoption of the “euro” as Europe's common currency represent the bookends of this half–century–long metamorphosis.

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The United States Capitol · Designing and Decorating a National Icon · Edited by Donald R. Kennon

The United States Capitol is a national cultural icon, and among the most visually recognized seats of government in the world. The past quarter century has witnessed an explosion of scholarly interest in the art and architectural history of the Capitol. The emergence of the historic preservation movement and the maturation of the discipline of art conservation have refocused attention on the Capitol as the American “temple of liberty.”

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Staking Her Claim · The Life of Belinda Mulrooney, Klondike and Alaska Entrepreneur · By Melanie J. Mayer and Robert N. DeArmond

If Horatio Alger had imagined a female heroine in the same mold as one of the young male heroes in his rags-to-riches stories, she would have looked like Belinda Mulrooney. Smart, ambitious, competitive, and courageous, Belinda Mulrooney was destined through her legendary pioneering in the wilds of the Yukon basin to found towns and many businesses. She built two fortunes, supported her family, was an ally to other working women, and triumphed in what was considered a man's world.

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Peasants in Arms · War and Peace in the Mountains of Nicaragua, 1979–1994 · By Lynn Horton

Drawing on testimonies from contra collaborators and ex-combatants, as well as pro-Sandinista peasants, this book presents a dynamic account of the growing divisions between peasants from the area of Quilalí who took up arms in defense of revolutionary programs and ideals such as land reform and equality and those who opposed the FSLN.



African Apocalypse · The Story of Nontetha Nkwenkwe, a Twentieth-Century South African Prophet · By Robert R. Edgar and Hilary Sapire

The devastating influenza epidemic of 1918 ripped through southern Africa. In its aftermath, revivalist and millenarian movements sprouted. Prophets appeared bearing messages of resistance, redemption, and renewal. African Apocalypse: The Story of Nontetha Nkwenkwe, A Twentieth-Century Prophet is the remarkable story of one such prophet, a middle-aged Xhosa woman named Nontetha.

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Herero Heroes · A Socio-Political History of the Herero of Namibia, 1890–1923 · By Jan-Bart Gewald

The Herero-German war led to the destruction of Herero society. Yet Herero society reemerged, reorganizing itself around the structures and beliefs of the German colonial army and Rhenish missionary activity. This book describes the manner in which the Herero of Namibia struggled to maintain control over their own freedom in the face of advancing German colonialism.

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El Dorado in West Africa · The Gold Mining Frontier, African Labor, and Colonial Capitalism · By Raymond E. Dumett

The second half of the nineteenth century witnessed some of the greatest gold mining migrations in history when dreams of bonanza lured thousands of prospectors and diggers to the far corners of the earth—including the Gold Coast of West Africa. El Dorado in West Africa explores the first modern gold rush of Ghana in all of its dimensions—land, labor, capital, traditional African mining, technology, transport, management, the clash of cultures, and colonial rule.

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A Paris Year · Dorothy and James T. Farrell, 1931–1932 · By Edgar Marquess Branch

The Depression that follows the 1929 stock market crash is emptying Paris of many American expatriates. Two exceptions are Dorothy and James T. Farrell, the naïve young couple who have fled their home in Chicago for the fabled liberation that Paris seems to offer. In this telling account drawn from interviews, diaries, and letters home, Edgar Marquess Branch presents a composite view of the life of a young author yet to complete his masterpiece, Studs Lonigan.

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Black Lawyers, White Courts · The Soul of South African Law · By Kenneth S. Broun · Foreword by Julius L. Chambers

In the struggle against apartheid, one often overlooked group of crusaders was the coterie of black lawyers who overcame the Byzantine system that the government established oftentimes explicitly to block the paths of its black citizens from achieving justice. Now, in their own voices, we have the narratives of many of those lawyers as recounted in a series of oral interviews. Black Lawyers, White Courts is their story and the anti-apartheid story that has before now gone untold.

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Divine Expectations · An American Woman in Nineteenth-Century Palestine · By Barbara Kreiger

Barbara Kreiger's intriguing narrative presents the account of Clorinda Minor, a charismatic American Christian woman whose belief in the Second Coming prompted her to leave a comfortable life in Philadelphia in 1851 and take up agriculture in Palestine. After her disappointment in a failed prophecy that the End of Days would take place in October 1844, Mrs.

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Midwives of the Revolution · Female Bolsheviks and Women Workers in 1917 · By Jane McDermid and Anna Hillyar

The Bolshevik seizure of power in 1917 and the ensuing communist regime have often been portrayed as a man’s revolution, with women as bystanders or even victims. Midwives of the Revolution examines the powerful contribution made by women to the overthrow of tsarism in 1917 and their importance in the formative years of communism in Russia.

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Every Factory a Fortress · The French Labor Movement in the Age of Ford and Hitler · By Michael Torigian

French trade unions played a historical role in the 1930s quite unlike that of any other labor movement. Against a backdrop of social unrest, parliamentary crisis, and impending world war, industrial unionists in the great metal-fabricating plants of the Paris Region carried out a series of street mobilizations, factory occupations, and general strikes that were virtually unique in Western history.

Cover of 'Every Factory a Fortress'