Books Acquired Recently

Cameron, Melanie. Holding the Dark. Winnipeg: The Muses’ Company, 1999.

I first encountered Cameron’s poetry in a 1999 issue of Rhubarb, the journal of the Mennonite Literary Society. The poem there is about two women who are lovers. Queer Mennonite literature is, of course, one of my academic specialties, so I decided to buy the collection from which the poem came.

I purchased this book from amazon.com’s network of independent booksellers.

Cofer, Judith Ortiz. The Latin Deli: Telling the Lives of Barrio Women. 1993. New York: W.W. Norton, 1995.

I received this mixed-genre book, Sharif’s collection of poems, and Sherman’s book as early birthday gifts yesterday. I’ve already finished Sharif’s, which was fantastic.

Rich, Adrienne. Adrienne Rich: Poetry and Prose. 2nd ed. Edited by Barbara Charlesworth Gelpi, Albert Gelpi, and Brett Millier. New York: W.W. Norton, 2018.

I just received an exam copy of this revised edition from the publisher in the mail. The first edition from 1993 is excellent. This new edition includes a robust selection of Rich’s work from the last two decades of her life.

Sharif, Solmaz. Look. Minneapolis: Graywolf Press, 2016.

Sherman, Erik. Kings of Queens: Life Beyond Baseball with the ’86 Mets. New York: Berkley Books, 2016.

Tinsley, Omise’eke Natasha. Ezili’s Mirrors: Imagining Black Queer Genders. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2018.

The queer/people of color intersection is another one of my research interests, as is religion and literature, so I bought this book that examines all three of these areas directly from the publisher as soon as I heard about it.

Published by danielshankcruz

I grew up in New York City and lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Goshen, Indiana; DeKalb, Illinois; and Salt Lake City, Utah before coming to Utica, New York. My mother’s family is Swiss-German Mennonite (i.e., it’s an ethnicity, not necessarily a theological persuasion) and my father’s family is Puerto Rican. I have a Ph.D. in English and currently teach at Utica College. I have also taught at Northern Illinois University and Westminster College in Salt Lake City. My teaching and scholarship are motivated by a passion for social justice, which is why my research focuses on the literature of oppressed groups, especially LGBT persons and people of color. While I primarily read and write about fiction, I am also a devoted reader of poetry because, as William Carlos Williams writes, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet [people] die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” Thinkers who influence me include Marina Abramovic, Kathy Acker, Di Brandt, Ana Castillo, Samuel R. Delany, Percival Everett, Essex Hemphill, Jane Jacobs, Walt Whitman, and the New York School of poets. I am also fond of queer Mennonite writers such as Stephen Beachy, Jan Guenther Braun, Lynnette Dueck/D’anna, and Casey Plett. In my free time I’m either reading, writing the occasional poem, playing board games (especially Scrabble, backgammon, and chess), watching sports (Let’s Go, Mets!), or cooking (curries, stews, roasts…).

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