Gabe Rosenberg '16

Dickson ’61 Wins Award from Chicago Baseball Museum for Book

Paul Dickson ’61

Paul Dickson ’61

Paul Dickson ’61 is the winner of the fifth annual Jerome Holtzman Award for his 2012 book, Bill Veeck: Baseball’s Greatest Maverick.

The Holtzman Award, established in 2008, is presented by the Chicago Baseball Museum to the person who “reflects the values and spirit of its Hall of Fame namesake. The honoree is selected by what is deemed to be the most significant contribution to the promotion of Chicago baseball and the preservation of its history and namesake.”

The book, collecting information and accounts from primary sources and over one hundred interviews, is an in-depth portrait of a baseball innovator, two-time White Sox owner and advocate of racial equality. As owner of the Cleveland Indians, Veeck in 1947 signed Larry Doby, the first black player in the American League.

Dickson is most recently the author of Words from the White House: Words and Phrases Coined or Popularized by America’s Presidents, the first compilation of new words and lexical curiosities originating from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. With definitions, etymology, and brief essays, each entry provides a glance at the history of the United States through the language used and invented in the past 200 years.

For more on Paul Dickson’s book on Bill Veeck see this past Wesleyan Connection story.

Kalb ’81 Receives 2 Awards for Book on Marathon Theater Works

Jonathan Kalb ’81

Jonathan Kalb ’81 is the recipient of two national awards for his recent book, Great Lengths: Seven Works of Marathon Theater, published by The University of Michigan Press. Kalb, professor of theater at Hunter College and doctoral faculty member at The City University of New York, won the George Jean Nathan Award for dramatic criticism and the Theatre Library Association’s George Freedley Memorial Award.

Great Lengths takes a close look at large-scale theater productions, often running more than five hours in length, which present special challenges to the artists and audiences. Recreating the experience of seeing the works, which include Tony Kushner’s Angels in America and the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Nicholas Nickleby, the book is aimed at general readers as well as theater specialists.

Book by Jonathan Kalb ’81

The Nathan Award is awarded annually by a jury of the English Department heads of Cornell, Princeton and Yale Universities, given for an outstanding work of criticism dealing with current or past dramatic productions. Kalb shares the 2011–12 award with Puppy: An Essay on Uncanny Life by Kenneth Gross. Kalb previously won the Nathan Award in 1990–91 for his first book, Beckett in Performance, as well as articles and reviews he published in The Village Voice.

The Freedley Award was established in 1968 to honor a book of exceptional scholarship that examines some aspect of live theatre or performance.

Book by Goldberg ’99 Examines Issues of Gay Parenthood

Abbie Goldberg ’99

Abbie Goldberg ’99 is the author of the new book Gay Dads: Transitions to Adoptive Fatherhood , published by New York University Press, which collects stories and empirical data from interviews with 70 gay men, taking a close look at societal and political issues in gay parenthood.

Introducing the book with a vignette of two new adoptive fathers, Carter and Patrick, Goldberg dives into a discussion of the mazes of adoption agencies, couples’ decisions to openly present themselves as gay, the social implications of parenthood, and the changes in career commitment.

“Exploration of the experiences of gay adoptive fathers,” Goldberg writes, “has the capacity to stretch and enrich our national understanding of the sexuality, gender, and race contours of ‘family.’”

The place of gay parenthood in society is now becoming more recognized, she says, with popular television and movies positively depicting same-sex couples and their adopted children.

Book by Abbie Goldberg ’99

From her interviews, Goldberg finds that gay men who decide to adopt face societal scrutiny, stereotyped as being less effective caretakers than women. With recent political progress in the realm of gay civil rights, as well the overall increase in gay-parent families, more and more couples have realized their own ability to become good parents.

Parenthood for gay men is very deliberate and most often informed by the stability of the couple’s relationship as well as their financial and career stability. The process of adoption, expensive to begin with, provides additional stresses and challenges as gay couples attempt to work around state laws and adoption agency restrictions.

While heteronormativity still governs the institutions and discussions of the “average American family,” Goldberg argues that gay couples are now more interested in raising children than they were just 20 years ago. By focusing specifically on gay male couples, Goldberg examines how these men defy traditional ideas of masculinity and father roles to create new, more diverse identities for both themselves and their family.

Goldberg is associate professor of psychology at Clark University in Worcester, Mass., as well as a senior research fellow at the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute. She previously published the book Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children: Research on the Family Life Cycle (Contemporary Perspectives on Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Psychology) with the American Psychological Association.

Arnson ’76 Edits Book On Postwar Democratization in Latin America

Cynthia Arnson ’76

Cynthia Arnson ’76 is the editor of the book, In The Wake of War: Democratization and Internal Armed Conflict, published by Woodrow Wilson Center Press and Stanford University Press in 2012. The book focuses on the relationship of internal armed conflict to postwar democratization in Latin America, centering on Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua and Peru.

In those countries, Arnson writes, the dominant aspect of political life during and after the end of the Cold War was insurgency or counterinsurgency war, a product of political exclusion and reinforced by patterns of socio-economic marginalization. Through its case studies, the book looks at the differences between states in creating and resolving armed conflict, connected to the particular variances in duration, geographic reach, ethnicity, Cold War influence and involvement with the international community.

Introducing the book, Arnson comments that “human beings, not structures or institutions, make choices that have an impact on whether politics evolves in a democratic direction.” With a particular emphasis on how individual actors impact the state’s success in addressing chronic underlying problems, enacting reforms, and promoting reconciliation, the book reveals how the social, economic, and cultural conditions of countries cause uneven patterns of democratization.

Book edited by Cynthia Arnson ’76

Chapters discuss the connection between a weak state and the deterioration of political democracy in countries such as Columbia and Peru, the instability and economic issues of Haiti, and the post-conflict establishment of human rights norms in Guatemala. Various essays also find that public satisfaction with democracy was lower in conflict and postwar countries than in other Latin American countries, with human development indicators lower as well. The European Union’s engagement in the peace processes of Latin America is discussed at length, as the organization worked to accomplish its own multilateral strategy and increase its presence on the world stage.

Arnson is director of the Latin American Program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Her work focuses on democratic governance, conflict resolution, international relations, and U.S. policy in the Western hemisphere, and for the Woodrow Wilson Center she has written and edited publications on Colombia and the Andean region, Central America, Argentina, Venezuela, China-Latin American relations, energy and organized crime.

The author of Crossroads: Congress, the President, and Central America, 1976–1993, Arnson also is the editor of Comparative Peace Processes in Latin America and co-editor of Rethinking the Economics of War: The Intersection of Need, Creed and Greed and the forthcoming Latin American Populism in the 21st Century.

5 Study-Abroad Students Pictured in German World Magazine

Wesleyan students in Berlin.

Wesleyan students in Berlin.

A group of Wesleyan students was featured in the Fall 2012 “Education Special” issue of the magazine German World.

Shu Zhang ’13, Afi Tettey-Fio ’13, Oscar Takabvirwa ’14, Taylor Steele ’14, and Julius Bjornson ’14 were photographed in Berlin, while they studied abroad in Germany during the Spring 2012 semester.

German World is distributed to classrooms across the United States.

 

Sara Molyneaux ’77 Elected Chair of Conservation Group

Sara Molyneaux ’77

Sara Molyneaux ’77

Sara Molyneaux ’77 was recently elected first female chair of the Trustees of the Conservation Law Foundation (CFL), a nonprofit environmental protection agency for New England.

Molyneaux, who has served on the board since 1998, succeeds Michael Moskow, chair since 2002, and is only the fifth board chair for the 46-year-old organization. In her new capacity, she will help CFL tackle local environmental challenges, such as the impact of recent storms, reducing transportation emissions and building livable cities, creating sustainable food systems and fisheries, and addressing the issue of water pollution in the region.

Molyneaux, described as a “passionate environmental steward” by CLF President John Kassel, was formerly a research chemist for both the Department of Energy and in private industry, working on biomass-to-energy projects, specifically converting agricultural wastes and seaweeds into bio-diesel. She is active in environmental issues, especially land conservation, in her hometown of Dover, Mass. Her projects with the town include mandated recycling, an integrated pest management program for mosquito control, a regional Land Bank home rule petition, and the purchase Wylde Woods.

Molyneaux also serves on the boards of the Upper Charles Conservation Land Trust, Inc., and the Dover Land Conservation Trust. Currently, she is working in conjunction with the CLF to further nutrient pollution abatement in the southern embayments of Cape Cod.