Tag Archives: Mennonites

Books Acquired Recently

Andreas, Peter. Rebel Mother: My Childhood Chasing the Revolution. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2017.

I will be writing a review of this book for Mennonite Life, and received it from them. It is about a man raised by a Mennonite mother who was a political radical in the 1970s, an era that I am quite interested in, so I look forward to reading it.

Eichhorn, Kate. The Archival Turn in Feminism: Outrage in Order. 2013. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2014.

I came across a citation of this book in my recent reading on queer archiving and decided to buy it as a continuation of this reading.

Hurst, Michel, and Robert Swope. Casa Susanna. New York: powerHouse Books, 2005.

This is a book of found photographs from a 1960s resort where crossdressers would congregate. I am excited to view it as I continue to investigate queer history.

Martinac, Paula. Out of Time. 1990. Seattle: Seal Press, 1999.

After I ordered Casa Susanna, I was reading an article about lesbian fiction that recreates the queer past, and it mentioned Martinac’s novel, which is about a woman who finds an old photograph album that apparently once belonged to some lesbians. In other words, it is an earlier fictionalized narrative of how Casa Susanna came to be! I decided in light of this coincidence that I should buy it immediately.

Wiebe, Rudy. The Scorched-Wood People. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1977.

This is one of the few Wiebe books that I do not already own. I read a critical essay recently which mentioned it. I did not realize that it was about the Louis Riel rebellion, a historical event that I know little about, but have been wanting to investigate further. So I decided to buy the novel as the beginning of my investigation.

 

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Books Acquired Recently

Del Rio, Vanessa, and Dian Hanson. Vanessa Del Rio: Fifty Years of Slightly Slutty Behavior. Cologne, Germany: Taschen, 2016.

I have come across a number of references to Vanessa Del Rio’s acting over the years. If I recall correctly, I first saw some of her work in an exhibit at the Museum of Sex in New York City. One of my favorite queer authors, Samuel R. Delany, writes fondly of her in Times Square Red, Times Square Blue.  Recently, I was reading Juana María Rodríguez’s Sexual Futures, Queer Gestures, and Other Latina Longings, and she cites Vanessa Del Rio, which is Del Rio’s autobiography, quite favorably, so I decided to buy it. I love Taschen’s high-quality books of photography, and have enjoyed several of Hanson’s books that they have published about sexuality, so I anticipate that Vanessa Del Rio will be an enjoyable, educational read.

Peterson, Zoey Leigh. Next Year for Sure. New York: Scribner, 2017.

I read a review of this novel about polyamory on Casey the Canadian Lesbrarian and it sounded quite fascinating, so I decided to buy it. I’m not sure that I’ve ever read a novel that investigates being poly as a central theme before, so it is exciting to come across this book!

Wiebe, Rudy. A Voice in the Land: Essays By and About Rudy Wiebe. Ed. W.J. Keith. Edmonton: NeWest Press, 1981.

Rudy Wiebe is the most prominent North American Mennonite writer. His influence on the field of Mennonite literature cannot be understated. In my research about his work I’ve often seen A Voice in the Land cited, but have never actually read it. I finally decided to do so.

All three books were purchased from amazon.com’s network of independent booksellers.

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Books Acquired Recently

I am trying to read as much queer literature and theory as I can this summer. The three following books fall under this rubric.

Butler, Alec. Rough Paradise. Toronto: Quattro Books, 2014.

Child, Abigail. Mouth to Mouth. Brooklyn: Eoagh Books, 2016.

Rodríguez, Juana María. Sexual Futures, Queer Gestures, and Other Latina Longings. New York: New York University Press, 2014.

This past weekend I attended the Crossing the Line: Women of Anabaptist Traditions Encounter Borders and Boundaries conference at Eastern Mennonite University. There was a small bookfair and I bought two books which I had signed by the authors (I already own many of the books that were on sale).

Loewen, Mary Ann. Sons and Mothers: Stories from Mennonite Men. Regina, SK: University of Regina Press, 2015.

Yoder, Anita Hooley. Circles of Sisterhood: A History of Mission, Service, and Fellowship in Mennonite Women’s Organizations. Harrisonburg, VA: Herald Press, 2017.

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Books Acquired Recently: Radical Women Edition

The most important intellectual experience of my life was when I first encountered feminist theory in a Feminist Theology course my second year of college. Feminism gave me a completely new way of viewing the world that has led me to become a much better person than I would have been otherwise. It has also led to my scholarly interests in minority literatures, most notably queer literature. The three books that I’ve acquired over the past few weeks in the U.S. (see the post I wrote yesterday to read more about the books I acquired on my recent trip to England) are evidence of my continued desire to encounter new feminist perspectives.

Breedlove, Lynn. Godspeed. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2002.

I had not heard of Breedlove, a member of the band Tribe 8, until recently when I came across several mentions of her in some queer theory I was reading (one mention was by Ann Cvetkovich and I think the other was by Jack Halberstam). Then I heard about this novel via Stryker’s book (see below) and it became a “Rule of Threes” thing: the universe was telling me to encounter some Breedlove. So I bought a copy of her book.

This and Stryker’s book were purchased from amazon.com’s network of independent booksellers.

Morris, Catherine, and Rujeko Hockley, ed. We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women 1965-85: A Sourcebook. Brooklyn: Brooklyn Museum, 2017.

I ordered an exam copy of this book from its distributor, Duke University Press, because I love radical literature from all traditions. While some of the documents it collects are well-known, most are not, so I anticipate that reading it will be an enjoyable journey of discovery. It looks like it would be an excellent resource for both African American Studies courses and Gender Studies courses.

Stryker, Susan. Transgender History. Berkeley, CA: Seal Press, 2008.

I love Stryker’s book on queer pulp fiction and have enjoyed other essays of hers as well, thus when I encountered a citation of this book while doing some writing on trans Mennonite literature I decided to buy it immediately. I have already read it and it is a strong, accessible introduction to the subject.

 

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Books Acquired Recently

Mast, Carrie A., and Gerald J. Mast, ed. Human Sexuality in Biblical Perspective: A Study Guide. Telford, PA: Cascadia Publishing House, 2016.

I bought this book because I am slowly working on a book about queer Mennonite literature, and while the book has a literary focus rather than a theological one, it is also important for me to be aware of the current state of theological Mennonite discussions about sexuality. Cascadia has published several books on this issue over the years and they have generally been thought-provoking, so I look forward to reading this text.

Samatar, Sofia. Tender: Stories. Easthampton, MA: Small Beer Press, 2017.

Samatar is one of the most prolific of the younger generation of Mennonite writers. I enjoyed her two novels (especially her second, The Winged Histories), and was delighted when I heard that she was coming out with a book of short stories. I pre-ordered it from amazon.com (where I also got the Masts’ book) and it arrived a few days ago.

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Books Acquired Recently

Friesen, Bernice. The Seasons Are Horses. Saskatoon, SK: Thistledown Press, 1995.

Friesen is one of Rhubarb‘s editors and I thought it would be helpful to check her own work out. I decided to buy her first book, a collection of interrelated short stories.

Keefe-Perry, L. Callid. Way to Water: A Theopoetics Primer. Eugene, OR: Cascade Books, 2014.

Since college I have been interested in the intersection between literature and theology, and in recent years many Mennonite writers have been examining how the field of theopoetics is a helpful tool for analyzing this intersection. I encounter references to this field enough that I thought it would make sense for me to do some of my own reading on the subject.

Both books were purchased from amazon.com’s network of independent sellers.

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Books Acquired Recently

Flowers, Stephen E., and Crystal Dawn Flowers. Carnal Alchemy: Sado-Magical Techniques for Pleasure, Pain, and Self-Transformation. Rochester, VT: Inner Traditions, 2013.

I encountered a reference to another book about the intersection between BDSM and spirituality in Ariane Cruz’s (no relation) excellent book The Color of Kink, and while reading about it online came across the Flowers’s book. Theirs sounded more interesting than the other one, so it is the one I ordered.

This and Serano’s book were acquired from amazon.com’s network of independent booksellers.

Foster, Clarise, ed. “Mennonite Poets.” Special issue of Rhubarb 40 (2017).

Although I normally do not document journal issues that I acquire, I am making an exception in this case because it is the first anthology of Mennonite poetry since Ann Hostetler’s 2003 A Capella. It has the potential to become a significant text in the field of Mennonite literature as the field continues to balance the importance of “first generation” authors who began publishing in the 1980s and 1990s and the younger “second generation” whose work has appeared in the past decade.  Foster’s anthology is also fascinating because she herself is not a Mennonite, so it is interesting that Rhubarb (the journal of the Mennonite Literary Society) chose to get this outsider perspective on the field.

Lewis, Sinclair. It Can’t Happen Here. 1935. New York: New American Library, 2005.

I came across this book while browsing at the Norfolk, Virginia, airport’s newsstand earlier this week. I had just finished reading Paula Rabinowitz’s book American Pulp and was thinking about how books used to be sold in many more places than they are today. This put me in the mood to buy a book to keep the tradition of buying something to read while one is traveling alive. I chose Lewis’s book because when I found out that it is about a Fascist regime taking over the United States I thought to myself that the way the current administration is going such books will not be legal for long.

Serano, Julia. Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity. 2nd ed. Berkeley, CA: Seal Press, 2016.

I have been writing about trans fiction lately and have been feeling the need for more trans theory to help guide my thinking, so I decided to order the new version of Serano’s classic text.

 

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