Biography & Autobiography
A dozen Purdue University Jewish faculty members-10 men and 2 women-who were forced to flee their homes in Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Poland, and Hungary during the Holocaust, tell their stories in a series of interviews conducted by Kleine-Ahlbrandt, a history professor at Purdue and the author of The Burden of Victory: France, Britain and the Enforcement of the Versailles Peace, 1919-1925 (1995). Some of the refugees were unable to escape and survived through hiding and subterfuge or endured the camps. The interviewees, some speaking out for the first time after more than half a century, often found it difficult to recall painful experiences. They discussed the problems of growing up Jewish, especially after the enactment of anti-Jewish legislation; the importance of religion, God, and traditions in their lives; and adjusting to life in the U.S., where finding employment was just one of many obstacles. The author complements the interviews with commentary for readers unfamiliar with the history of World War 1.
Walther Leisler Kiep is one of the most independent and influential German post-war politicians. He is also a successful entrepreneur and longtime chairman of Atlantik-Brücke, the influential German-American friendship organization, which he now serves as honorary chairman. In his autobiography, Kiep speaks frankly about a life at the center of power: as an independent politician and treasurer of the governing CDU party from 1970 to 1991, who did not shrink from conflict with party leaders Helmut Kohl and Franz Josef Strauss; as Minister of Finance in Lower Saxony; as a longtime member of the Volkswagen Supervisory board for 21 years; and as an ambassador for German-American relations, and confidant of several US presidents. As well as presenting an inside history of the relationship between Germany and the United States, the book sheds particular light on the struggle for German unification and that country’s complex relationship with the Middle East. "One of Germany’s most distinguished statesmen, Dr. Walther Leisler Kiep has come to personify the commitment of postwar German leaders to close German-American relations. It was a distinct pleasure for me to collaborate with Walther, and I deeply valued his wise counsel. Through his ongoing passionate and persistent contributions as a leading foreign policy voice in Germany and as longtime chairman of Atlantik-Bruecke, Dr. Kiep has played an extraordinary role in building trust and mutual understanding between our two countries. His memoir is an invaluable addition to our understanding of international diplomacy."—Lee H. Hamilton, former Congressman and Co-Chair of the 9/11 Commission, former Director of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and presently Director of the Center on Congress at Indiana University “Kiep is an entertaining storyteller, and he shows a good sense of narrative pace. His memoirs are also of immediate relevance for scholars of international history. Over the past decade, historians have been eager to uncover the activities of ‘transnational,’ nongovernmental actors, as opposed to formal government-to-government relations. From this standpoint, Kiep’s wide-ranging activities as a diplomatic and financial troubleshooter are illuminating,”—William Glenn Gray, Purdue University.
Part pastiche and part parody, Enlightening Up Postmodernism brings the techniques, values, and terms of the Enlightenment into collision with the strategies, misgivings, and terminology of postmodernism. Resulting from many years of sustained reading of the tart, rigorous literature of the eighteenth century, and almost as many years of university teaching and committeeing, Enlightening Up Postmodernism was written to vex scholars without a sense of theory and theorists without a sense of humor, while diverting able readers of all persuasions. To that end, Johnson's Life of Foucault, supplies the-somewhat judgmental-biography of Foucault that he would surely have written had he had the opportunity, while Lord Chesterfield's Letters To His Daughter On the Tenure Track converts the courtly advice that Chesterfield inflicted on his illegitimate son into something more academic and more mischievous. This critical and scholarly hybrid allows the wisdom and eloquence of the past to probe some weaknesses, oversights, and distortions in the theoretical work of the present and enables recent work in theory to interrogate some of the short-sightedness, prejudice, evasion, and complacency in the writings of the past. Of the remaining chapters, one reworks some papers from The Spectator into wry commentaries on the postmodern lifestyle. Another, in heroic couplets, converts Pope's Essay on Criticism into An Essay on Theery, and a third turns Swift's ironic Argument Against Abolishing Christianity into one Against Abolishing Higher Education. The last chapter inverts the process, wrenching a postmodern text back three centuries, to wrap Fredric Jameson's (deservedly famous) reading of the Westin Bonaventure Hotel around Vanbrugh's neo-classical Blenheim Palace. A brief bonus provides the reply Lord Chesterfield ought to have written to Samuel Johnson's too familiar, whining letter about his treatment as a lexicographer
The sesquicentennial of the birth of the influential American philosopher and educator John Dewey in 2009 marked an opportunity for members of the society that bears his name to reflect on his legacy. This book contains papers also published in the journal of the John Dewey Society, Education and Culture (Volume 25,2). Contents: Introduction: A. G. Rud, Jim Garrison, and Lynda Stone; Looking Forward from A Common Faith (Nel Noddings); Secularism, Secularization, and John Dewey (Larry A. Hickman); How to Use Pragmatism Pragmatically? Suggestions for the Twenty-First Century (Gert J. J. Biesta); Transforming Schooling through Technology: Twenty-First-Century Approaches to Participatory Learning (Craig A. Cunningham); Dewey’s Aesthetics and Today’s Moral Education (Jiwon Kim); Toward Inclusion and Human Unity: Rethinking Dewey’s Democratic Community (Hongmei Peng); More than “Mere Ideas”: Deweyan Tools for the Contemporary Philosopher (Barbara S. Stengel); Reconstruction in Dewey’s Pragmatism: Home, Neighborhood, and Otherness (Naoko Saito); John Dewey’s Contribution to Pragmatic Cosmopolitanism (Leonard J. Waks); Dewey and Cosmopolitanism (David T. Hansen).
The late J. Kirby Risk II called himself “a small-town businessman from the banks of the Wabash.” He was much more. The fastidious, dapper man from Lafayette, Indiana, exuded philanthropy and free enterprise. Like a sheepdog, he tended the flock, rounded up strays, darted to key places to close up stragglers, and nudged everyone toward a common goal. Sometimes his stubborn persistence caused clashes. His demanding behavior was for good, no matter what others thought. That was Kirby’s way. Kirby’s integrity was the basis for his two occupations. His first career was compassion, and his second career was the building of the battery company he cofounded in 1926 with $500 borrowed from his father. Today, Kirby Risk Corporation is a multimillion-dollar electrical products and services industry headquartered in Lafayette, Indiana, and led by Kirby’s son, Jim. Kirby’s Way captures the essence of this imitable gentleman, who with his wife of fifty-five years, Caroline, raised four children, gave time, money, and meals to strangers, refugees, Purdue University students, and their beloved community, while building from their kitchen table a successful Midwest corporation. He believed in “sacrificial service.” Kirby noticed people. He recognized their importance. In turn, they loved him and wanted to help him. He dwelled on his favorite song, “Mankind is My Business.” Relationships shaped his success. Kirby was quiet about his deeds. He lived the Bible passage, Matthew 6:3—“But when you do a kindness to someone, do it secretly—do not tell your left hand what your right hand is doing.” Kirby Risk may not have wanted this book. Yet he would have esteemed it as a parable, a spiritual truth that compels readers to discover certainties for themselves. From heaven, he tends the flock and rounds up strays, so more people might live Kirby’s Way.
The storyteller has a fascinating place in our world. Storyteller Sidney Homan tells tales of growing up in Philadelphia in the 1940s and 50s accounts of Bruzzy the Bully; of John Crapp, the television salesman; of Leslie Doober and his rotten banana; of drunken Uncle Eddie, and of the Queen of the mushrooms. Sometimes comic, sometimes bittersweet, A Fish in the Moonlight illuminates the growth of both storyteller and listener.
Story for All Americans: Vietnam, Victims, and Veterans (formerly titled, Touched by the Dragon) details wartime accounts of average servicemen and women-some heroic, some frightening, some amusing, some nearly unbelievable. The work is a historical compendium of fascinating and compelling stories woven together in a theme format. What makes this book truly unique, however, is its absence of literary pretentiousness. Relating oral accounts, the veterans speak in a no-nonsense, matter-of-fact way. As seen through the eyes of the veterans, the stories include first-person experiences of infantry soldiers, a flight officer, a medic, a nurse, a combat engineer, an intelligence soldier, and various support personnel. Personalities emerge gradually as the veterans discuss their pre war days, their training and preparation for Vietnam, and their actual in-country experiences. The stories speak of fear and survival: the paranoia of not knowing who or where the enemy was; the bullets, rockets, and mortars that could mangle a body or snuff out a life in an instant; and going home with a CMH - not the Congressional Medal of Honor, but a Casket with Metal Handles. The veterans also speak of friendships and simple acts of kindness. But more importantly, they speak of healing-both physically and mentally.
One night in 1990, a stranger cut the screen out of Nancy McCabe's bedroom window while she slept and shone a flashlight into her eyes as she woke. A few weeks later, her father came down with temporary amnesia. Although unrelated, these events became linked in her mind, sweeping out from under her the fundamentals many of us take for granted: safety, freedom, the stability of memory, and a general oblivion to mortality. After the Flashlight Man is the story of how one author came to terms with these experiences that threw her life into a whole new light: the self-defense classes, rape crisis volunteer work, writing, and meditation that served as checkpoints along her healing journey while she re- examined events from her childhood and relationships with family and friends. Ultimately, a flashlight turned against her as a bizarre weapon became instead a metaphorical tool that blazed her path, the impetus to reclaim, recast, and tell her own stories, discovering her own power to reinvent her vision of her life.
Afternoons with Puppy is a heartwarming account of dynamic relationships and outcomes involving a therapist, his therapy animals, and his patients over the course of almost two decades. It is a narrative of Dr. Fine's experiences and the growing respect for the power of the animals effect on his patients and himself.
The story told here of is one of adaptation and determination as the petty noble. Lacger family of Castres in southwestern France evolved -- and sometimes advanced their position--through the tr6ubled times of the Reformation and Wars of Religion, an all too brief period of tolerance, and the later proscription, of Protestantism. In the early 15oos, the family emerged from obscurity, some later attained influential posts and amassed considerable fortunes. While some family members embraced Catholicism for professional gain, family concerns were stiff important, as many then bequeathed their fortunes to Protestant family members.
In Blue Flame, noted regional biographer Robert C. Kriebel devotes his admiring attention to documenting Herman's life and music. No aspect of Herman's career escapes his gaze: the musicians-both famous and obscure who played in his bands, the music they played, the writers and arrangers of that music, the famous recordings, and the ups and downs of band life from the big-band heyday of the 1930s through half a century of changing tastes and changing times. The result of Kriebel's painstaking research is an accurate and detailed picture of the strenuous and frustrating life of' a big-band leader-a life that Herman himself characterized as "a big pain ... you're victimized before you even start, and it never lets up. There is no life, there is no home." Passion for the music, music-making, musicians, and fans kept Herman going. Kriebel captures these trials and passions for the reader in lively prose.
Constance Studer uses her family's story to illustrate larger ethical dilemmas in which modem medical professionals find themselves. The history of why prefrontal lobotomies were performed on patients is explored, and why only a few physicians raised dissenting voices to this mutilating surgery. Both the author and her father were injured by medical treatments that were intended to help. Her father's lobotomy caused irreversible brain damage. Connie's vaccine-related illness caused systemic lupus. She cites an article by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. that investigates our government cover-up of a mercury/autism scandal. Thimerosal, the ethylmercury preservative used in vaccine preparation, appears to be responsible for the epidemic of autism and other neurological disorders among our children. In 2007, one child out of 150 suffers from autism or other neurological-cognitive disabilities. This book is a plea to the medical-pharmaceutical-government complex to ban the use of thimerosal in the production of vaccines and to re-evaluate the number of vaccines administered to infants and children.
In this book, prominent Italian American creative writers discuss the ways their heritage has impacted their works. For many, there has been a distinctive separation between their involvement with their families and the culture the immigrants brought to this country and their rise to positions of prominence in academic or literary circles in the United States. In trying to establish a unified identity, they have faced many conflicts between home values and the beliefs of a wider society. As writers, they discuss the ways their conflicts are represented in their works. They also discuss the ways that their childhood memories of immigrants, their practices have been a strong foundation for their creativity. In addition, five scholars in the field of Italian American literature critically analyze works by many of the creative writers in this anthology and discuss the future of the field.
What happens behind the doors of the animal shelter? This book will introduce the reader to the work culture of animal shelter employees, volunteers, activists, educators, and pets. By weaving together her own personal memoirs with interviews with workers, the author describes the traditions, philosophies, history, and current social dynamics of a typical animal welfare community. She examines how the daily interactions, personal philosophies, disparate methods, technology, and life experiences of the humans and pets influence the care of homeless animals, often playing an intricate role in the life or death situation each pet eventually faces.The author also describes her own experience with a "rescued" dog, touching upon the issues of victimization and redemption that she finds characterize the animal welfare field. The animals in the book are presented as active participants in this daily drama, able to communicate their needs to their caretakers and form lasting impressions. Throughout the book, workers, volunteers, and activists tell their own stories-stories that embody the hopes, frustrations, successes, and failures in bridging the bond between homeless pets and new families.
This inquiry into matters of heart, conducted under the shadows of pending surgery, awakens themes of boyhood, education, and marriage and prompt questions about loyalty to a deceased father, connections with immigrant grandparents, loss and rediscovery of faith, and solitude versus community. A medical narrative, the book also chronicles a span of contemporary American life. Throughout Amato's account, the consistent reminder of his upcoming bypass invites readers to reflect on their own lives and selves. This is an intelligent and witty guide to an immensely common operation that nevertheless for each patient constitutes a unique experience-a veritable rite of passage.
Charlie and the Shawneetown Dame is a dramatization of a true story from the Prohibition era, involving one of the more bizarre gang wars in the annals of American crime lore, replete with homemade tank battles, crude bombings from an open cockpit aircraft, and chronicling the life of Charlie Birger, a flamboyant, slightly mad Al Capone wannabe. And then there's the dame, a beautiful young blonde society babe, whose sexual double-dealing entices then infuriates both rival's renegade leaders. A rapid, riveting read, Bain himself considers this his best book.
Stanley Fish opens the collection with a persuasive argument for the role of intention and biography. Michael McKeon, Gordon Turnbull, and Jerome Christensen are concerned with the late eighteenth--and early nineteenth-century English cultural discourse that gave rise to the nearly simultaneous emergence of literary biography, Romantic sensibility, and reflexive human consciousness. The essays by Alison Booth, Cheryl Walker, and Sharon O'Brien reveal that the recognition or lack thereof the biographical subject has received and remains both a problem and an opportunity for women writers and readers. The essays by Valerie Ross, Rob Wilson, Steven Weiland, and William Epstein pursue the question of difference and cultural reification in the theory and practice of a specifically American biography and biographical criticism.
Both accessible and insightful, this collection of personal critical essays employs a formal study of literature as framework for the consideration of universal issues, including grief management, death, and acceptance of, and benefit from, traumatic change. These topics offer Brackett the opportunity to reflect upon the joys and rigors of scholarship as she considers professional issues, such as academic advancement through publication. They stand as testimony to one professional's belief that academia should not only embrace but encourage a number of approaches to self-expression on the part of its scholars. Her personal commentary draws from the work and life stories of many writers, including Elizabeth Cary, Anne Bradstreet, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Rabindranath Tagore, Leo Tolstoy, Katherine Anne Porter, and V.S. Naipaul. Critical and philosophical commentary by notables such as Richard Rorty, Michel Foucault, Jane Tompkins, Lois McNay, Diane P. Freeman, Olvia Frey, Frances Murphy Zauhar, Janice Radway and Patricia Waugh interlace and advance Brackett's own speculations. The book makes clear Brackett's belief that no reasonable explanation exists for the necessity some scholars see in withholding results of literary study from a broader audience, unless it be a reluctance to write with the clarity necessary to make digestible and enjoyable the fruits of their profession.
This is the story of a remarkable life and a journey, from the privileged world of Prussian aristocracy, through the horrors of World War II, to high society in the television age of postwar America. It is also an account of a spiritual voyage, from a conventional Christian upbringing, through marriage to Pastor Martin Niemoeller, to conversion to Judaism.Born during the turbulent days of the Weimar Republic, the author was the goddaughter of Kaiser Wilhelm II (to whom her father was financial advisor). During her teenage years, she witnessed the rise of the Third Reich and her family’s resistance to it, culminating in their involvement in “Operation Valkyrie,” the ill-fated attempt to assassinate Hitler and form a new government. At war’s end, she worked with British Intelligence to uncover Nazis leaders. Keeping a promise to her father, she left Germany for a new life in the United States in the 1950s, working for NBC and raising her son in the exciting world of New York, only to return to Germany as the wife of Martin Niemoeller, the voice of religious resistance during the Third Reich and of German guilt and conscience in the postwar decades. Upon her husband's death in 1984 she returned to America, after having converted to Judaism in London, and turned yet another page by becoming an active public speaker and author. The title reflects a story of three parts: “Crowns,” the world of nobility in which the author was raised; “Crosses,” her life with Martin Niemoeller and his battles with the Third Reich; and “Stars,” the spiritual journey that brought her to Judaism.
Whether or not Haider has followed the ideological path of his compatriot Adolf Hitler, says Austrian political historian Höbelt, he has certainly followed his route to publicity around the world. He explores the politics of modern Austria, and debunks the myth that Haider is driven by passion rather than self-interest.
In the early 1900s, Mary Matthews and Lella Gaddis forged trails for women at Purdue University and throughout Indiana. Mary was the first dean of the School of Home Economics. Lella was Indiana’s first state leader of Home Demonstration. In 1914, Mary hired Lella to organize Purdue’s new Home Economics Extension Service. According to those who knew them, Lella was a “sparkler” who traveled the state instructing rural women about nutrition, hygiene, safe water, childcare, and more. “Reserved” Mary established Purdue’s School of Home Economics, created Indiana’s first nursery school, and authored a popular textbook. Both women used their natural talents and connections to achieve their goals in spite of a male-dominated society. As a land grant institution, Purdue University has always been very connected to the American countryside. Based on extensive oral history and archival research, this book sheds new light on the important role female staff and faculty played in improving the quality of life for rural women during the first half of the twentieth century. It is also a fascinating story, engagingly told, of two very different personalities united in a common goal.
Egon Erwin Kisch (1885-1948) is widely regarded as one of the most outstanding journalists of the twentieth century. He is also credited with virtually defining reportage as a form of literary art in which accuracy of observation and fidelity to facts combine with creative narrative. Restless, doggedly inquisitive, fascinated with the unusual, deeply committed to decency and justice in human affairs, Kisch pursued a life of worldwide adventure and reporting. He visited North Africa, the Soviet Union, Central Asia, Australia, China, and the United States, where he traveled from one coast to the other as an ordinary seaman, made friends with Charlie Chaplin and Upton Sinclair, and commented with wit and irony on American life.
The book is organized around three dual political biographies: author and dramatist Hugo von Hofmannsthal is compared and contrasted to the parallel development of Leopold von Andrian; Karl Renner's political theories are examined in their temporal context and juxtaposed to the historical scholarship and political career of Josef Redlich; and the historical works of Heinrich Friedjung and the bureaucratic career of Ernest von Koerber are analyzed as parallel and partly complementing preoccupations with the crisis of the Austrian state around 1900. Each of the dual biographies focuses on a distinct problem in the development of the Imperial Austrian state in the early twentieth century.
Harry Spring kept detailed diaries throughout most of his life. Harry died in 1974, but through his diaries he lives to tell us about his experiences. His diary for the time from November 28, 1917 to August 19, 1918 were lost during the fighting in the Argonne Forest, but in 1974, just before he died, he wrote some supplementary notes of what he could remember of the time. Harry Spring never intended or expected that his diaries would be published. They are therefore as private and personal as they are detailed and accurate. He never tried to make his diaries politically correct – he wrote exactly what he felt. This is why these diaries are so powerful.
In 1937 Edith had received a doctorate in psychology from the University of Vienna, and high recommendations from her famous teachers. Her career prospects looked bright indeed. But a year later, she was a refugee from Hitler's war on Jews. She left her Nazi-occupied homeland and immigrated to the United States in 1939. In the United States, she pursued her career in psychology as a professor at prominent universities as well as a clinical consultant for the State of Indiana. As a psychology professor at Purdue, she contracted tuberculosis and spent 1962-64 in a tuberculosis hospital. Before she was released, she began to experience instances of schizophrenia. In this condition, she taught at St. Mary-of the-Woods College in Terre Haute, Indiana, for a year. Just before her stay there was to end, a priest discovered her mental illness. All through her mental illness, she kept a diary chronicling her "schizophrenic episode." Father, Have I Kept My Promise? is that diary-turned-book. Part of the book's charm is Edith's honesty--she does not bide anything from her reader.