This section advertises the book-length publications of scholars affiliated with the EAAS member associations. This will be limited to books written in English, available by on-line international order. More recent annoucements are listed at the top.
Book reviews by EAAS members have appeared on this site until 2005. Since 2006, reviews of European monographs and essay collections in the field of American Studies appear in the European Journal of American Studies. Please go to http://ejas.revues.org/.
Glavanakova, Alexandra. Transcultural Imaginings. Translating the Other, Translating the Self in Narratives about Migration and Terrorism. Sofia: KX – Critique and Humanism Publishing House, 2016. 250 pages. ISBN: 978-954-587-201-3.
Meyer, Sabine N. We Are What We Drink: The Temperance Battle in Minnesota. Urbana-Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2015. ISBN 978-0-252-03935-5
A powerful study of identity formation and the power of place in the shaping of history
In We Are What We Drink, Sabine N. Meyer eschews the generalities of other temperance histories to provide a close-grained story about the connections between alcohol consumption and identity in the upper Midwest.
Meyer examines the ever-shifting ways that ethnicity, gender, class, religion, and place interacted with each other during the long temperance battle in Minnesota. Her deconstruction of Irish and German ethnic positioning with respect to temperance activism provides a rare interethnic history of the movement. At the same time, she shows how women engaged in temperance work as a way to form public identities and reforges the largely neglected, yet vital link between female temperance and suffrage activism. Relatedly, Meyer reflects on the continuities and changes between how the movement functioned to construct identity in the heartland versus the movement’s more often studied roles in the East. She also gives a nuanced portrait of the culture clash between a comparatively reform-minded Minneapolis and dynamic anti-temperance forces in whiskey-soaked St. Paul–forces supported by government, community, and business institutions heavily invested in keeping the city wet.
Ambitious and revelatory, We Are What We Drink offers a powerful study of identity formation and the power of place in the shaping of history.
“Long have we chanted the trinity of race, class, and gender, but only a few scholars have been able to pull off studies that integrate these issues. Meyer, more than almost anyone I can think of, genuinely succeeds. A major contribution, not only to the history of the temperance movement, but to the histories of Irish and German Americans, to the history of women’s movements, and to the interpenetrating history of ethnicity, class, gender, and identity.”–Paul Spickard, author of Race and Nation: Ethnic Systems in the Modern World
“A thoughtful and balanced account. Meyer shows the complexities of ethnicity and the use of temperance and anti-temperance as motifs around which cultural agendas were arranged.”–Ian Tyrrell, author of Reforming the World: The Creation of America’s Moral Empire
“In We Are What We Drink, Sabine Meyer has brewed a heady mix of social and cultural history that will be sure to grace the bookshelves of historians, sociologists, anthropologists and other scholars who are keen to embrace multidisciplinary approaches to our past. This masterfully researched and argued book is broad in scholarly design but deep in its examination of over a hundred years of the temperance movement in one Midwestern American city. It deftly considers developments in class, gender, ethnicity, and locality in Minnesota as it investigates the social, economic, political and cultural topography of St. Paul’s struggles over alcohol and identity. The most enduring impact of this case study will be in its detailed and persuasive analysis of inter-ethnic relations among working and middle-class Irish and German Americans, who in support or in opposition to temperance crafted their own identities through contests over class, power and place in a transforming America. This book is a milestone in the history of social movements and local and regional identities in the U.S.”–Thomas M. Wilson, editor of Drinking Cultures: Alcohol and Identity
Sabine N. Meyer is an assistant professor of American studies at the Institute of English and American Studies at the University of Osnabrück, Germany.
Glavanakova, Alexandra. Posthuman Transformations: Bodies and Texts in Cyberspace. Sofia: Sofia University Press. 2014. ISBN 978-954-07-3869-7
The book explores the re/positioning of the human body and the evolution of the textual body in technological culture. Through the examination of a selection of fictional texts - both print and computer-mediated - an extensive account of the transformations of the bodies of fictional characters and the actual reader in interaction with/(in) cyberspace is presented. The book is interdisciplinary - at the crossroads of posthumanism, postmodern literary theory, phenomenology and the philosophy of technology. The author seeks to answer the interrelated questions: How is the human body imagined in print and computer-mediated fictional texts? What is the body's role in redefining the human in technological culture?
Nathalie Dupont. Between Hollywood and Godlywood: the case of Walden Media (with a foreword by Terry Lindvall), Peter Lang, 339 pp. ISBN: 978-3-0343-1817-4
This book sheds new light on the relationship between conservative Christianity and Hollywood through a case study of Walden Media, which produced The Chronicles of Narnia franchise. Financed by a conservative Christian, Walden Media is a unique American company producing educational and family-friendly films with inspiring, moral, redemptive and uplifting stories.
However, there is more to Walden than meets the eye and the company reflects wider trends within contemporary American society. Drawing on film industry data, film study guides and marketing campaigns targeting mainstream and conservative Christian audiences in the United States and abroad, this book reflects on Walden Media's first ten years of activity as well as on the relationship between Hollywood and conservative Christians, notably evangelicals, at the dawn of the twenty-first century. Though both worlds are still wary of one another, this study shows that Walden Media films, and particularly The Chronicles of Narnia franchise, have tread a workable path between Hollywood and 'Godlywood', albeit within the constraints of the now global film business.
Rio, David. New Literary Portraits of the American West: Contemporary Nevada Fiction. Peter Lang: Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2014. 300 pp. ISBN 978-3-0343-1590-6 hb. (Hardcover)
Book Synopsis : This book focuses on contemporary Nevada fiction as one of the most probing and intense literary explorations of the American West as a whole. Recent fictional representations of Nevada possess a revelatory value in relation to the whole West because they encompass some of the most common thematic trends in contemporary western writing. Actually, the thematic maturation of Nevada fiction over the last four decades often parallels the evolution of postfrontier writing, in particular, its growing departure from the overused topics and images of the formula western. Nevada fiction also possesses some unique and distinctive themes, such as its depiction of Basque immigrants, its emphasis on nuclear testing and nuclear waste, and its portrait of such peculiar cities as Reno and Las Vegas. This study discusses contemporary writing set in Nevada both by Nevadans (Robert Laxalt, Frank Bergon, Willy Vlautin, Phyllis Barber, Claire Vaye Watkins...) and by non-resident authors (Joan Didion, Hunter S. Thompson, Larry McMurtry...), drawing new attention to a remarkable literature that has been too often neglected in discussions of the American West.
Maria Antònia Oliver-Rotger, ed., Identity, Diaspora and Return in American Literature. New York: Routledge (Routledge Transnational Perspectives on American Literature), 2014, 222 pages
Ana Manzanas, Jesús Benito, Occupying Space in American Literature and Culture: Static Heroes, Social Movements and Empowerment. New York: Routledge (Routledge Transnational Perspectives on American Literature), 2014
Martin Simonson, David Rio, and Amaia Ibarraran, eds. A Contested West: New Readings of Place in the American West
PortalEditions, S.L. (March 1, 2013). ISBN-10: 8493970581 ISBN-13: 978-8493970581
Amaia Ibarraran, Martin Simonson, and David Rio, eds.: The Neglected West: Contemporary Approaches to Western American Literature." London: Portal, 2012.
David Rio, Amaia Ibarraran, and Martin Simonson, eds.: Beyond the Myth: New Perspectives on Western Texts. London: Portal, 2011.
Marcel Arbeit, Thomas Inge, eds. The (Un)popular South. Olomouc: Palacky University Press, 2011.