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Department of History

Faculty Bookshelf


An American Diplomat in Bolshevik Russia:  DeWitt Clinton Poole

Lorraine M. Lees and William S. Rodner, eds. (University of Wisconsin Press, 2014)

Lees and Rodner introduce, edit and annotate the memoir of DeWitt Clinton Poole, an American diplomat and keen observer of current events who witnessed and reported on the unfolding of the Bolshevik Revolution.  Historian David Foglesong writes, “Poole played important and little known roles in U.S. unofficial relations with the early Soviet government and contacts with anti- Bolshevik forces in the developing civil war in Russia. His oral history memoir helps to fill in the gaps in the published records of events.”

The Sino-Soviet Alliance:  An International History

Austin Jersild (University of North Carolina Press, 2014)

The focus of The Sino-Soviet Alliance on the lower-level forms of collaboration and exchange that were part of the relationship in the 1950s reveals that the impediments to a productive relationship were significant, complicating traditional views on Sino-Soviet relations that emphasize the importance of ideological disputes, conflicting national interests, and personality conflicts among leaders such as Chairman Mao and Nikita Khrushchev.


Fisheries Management in a Historical Perspective

Ingo Heidbrink and Matthew McCarthy, eds. (Hull, 2013)

This book brings together revised and extended versions of selected papers given at the 2009 conference of the North Atlantic Fisheries History Association (NAFHA) hosted by the Department of History at ODU. Like previous volumes in the Studia Atlantica series, the book includes articles by scholars new to the field as well as by renowned fisheries scientists and historians. While the majority of contributions focus on the history of fisheries management, other articles deal with the social history of the North Atlantic fisheries as well as the future of fisheries history research.

Leisure and Cultural Conflict in Twentieth-Century Britain 

Brett Bebber, ed.  (Manchester University Press, 2012)
This collection of articles analyzes how several different forms of leisure and popular culture—including television, cinema, the circus, women’s leisure, dance, football, and drug culture—contributed to broader patterns of cultural change in British society.  Three broad topics structure the collection: cultural contestation and social conflict in leisure, regulation and standardization, and national identity embodied in leisure and popular culture.

Last to Leave the Field

Timothy J. Orr, ed. (University of Tennessee Press, 2012)

Revealing the mind-set of a soldier seared by the horrors of combat even as he kept faith in his cause, Last to Leave the Field showcases the private letters of Ambrose Henry Hayward, a member of the 28th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry. From 1861 to 1864, Hayward saw action in five states, participating in the battles of Antietam, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg as well as in the Chattanooga and Atlanta campaigns. Through his letters to his parents and siblings, we observe the early idealism of the young recruit, and then, as one friend after another died beside him, we witness how the war gradually hardened him. Yet, despite the increasing brutality of what would become America’s costliest conflict, Hayward continually reaffirmed his faith in the Union cause, reenlisting for service late in 1863. Hayward’s correspondence takes us through many of the war’s most significant developments, including the collapse of slavery and the enforcement of Union policy toward Southern civilians. Ultimately, Hayward’s letters reveal the emotions of a soldier who at every battle resolved to be, as one comrade described him, "the first to spring forward and the last to leave the field."

Violence and Racism in Football: Politics and Cultural Conflict in British Society, 1968-98

Brett Bebber (Pickering and Chatto, 2012)

This book explores the impact of government repression, immigration, and unemployment on British football and its meanings in postwar British society. Sporting venues became the sites of social struggle as football became vested with violence, racial abuse, and political conflict. The book examines how British football not only mirrored these conflicts, but acted as an agent of social change in the ongoing battle for national identity in postwar Britain.

A History of the North Atlantic Fisheries, vol. 2, From the 1850s to the Early Twentieth-First Century

David J. Starkey and Ingo Heidbrink, eds. (Bremen:  Hauschild Vlg. 2012)

The fisheries have had a profound influence on the development of human societies in the North Atlantic region. Assuming countless forms over the ages, fishing activity has ranged across the vast expanse of an ocean that comprises a myriad of complex, dynamic and fragile ecosystems.  North Atlantic fisheries have contributed significantly to human dietary requirements, generated income for those engaged in the catching, processing and marketing of fish products, and encouraged fishers – and their techniques, beliefs and cultures - to migrate to new lands in search of better catches and markets. Written and edited by David J. Starkey and Ingo Heidbrink on behalf of the North Atlantic Fisheries History Association (NAFHA), this book explores such themes to provide a pioneering region-wide appraisal of the scale, character and significance of the North Atlantic fisheries from the 1850s to the early twenty-first century.  Together with David J. Starkey, Jon Th. Thor, Ingo Heidbrink, eds., A History of the North Atlantic Fisheries, vol. 1, From Early Times to the Mid-Nineteenth Century (Bremen: Hauschild Vlg. 2009), these two volumes provide a most comprehensive overview on the complex history of the fisheries in the North Atlantic region during the Long Durée and are already praised as the handbook for anybody interested in the history of fisheries in the North Atlantic.

Contemporary Latin America

Robert Holden (Wiley, 2012)

Contemporary Latin America presents the epochal political, economic, social, and cultural changes in Latin America over the last 40 years and comprehensively examines their impact on life in the region, and beyond.

In the Name of Italy: Nation, Family, and Patriotism in a Fascist Court

Maura Hametz (Fordham University Press and Oxford University Press, 2012)

A compelling narrative of an elderly widow’s successful challenge to the “italianization” of her surname, the book reveals institutional uncertainty, signs of underlying discontent, and legal opposition to Fascistization in the first decade of Mussolini’s rule.

Jewish Intellectual Women in Central Europe 1860-2000: Twelve Biographical Essays

Judith Szapor, Andrea Peto, Maura Hametz, and Marina Calloni, eds. (Mellen Press, 2012)

The essays collected in this volume show the complex lives and identities of Central European Jewish women, born between 1860 and the early 20th century.

Murder in the Metro: Laetitia Toureaux and the Cagoule in 1930s France

Annette Finley Croswhite and Gayle K. Brunelle (Louisiana State University Press, 2010)

The tale of Laeti­tia Toureaux epit­o­mizes the tur­bu­lence of 1930s France, as the coun­try pre­pared for a war most peo­ple dreaded but assumed would come. This period, there­fore, gen­er­ated great anx­i­ety but also offered new opportunities—and risks—to Toureaux as she embraced the iden­tity of a “mod­ern” woman. The authors unravel her mur­der as they detail her story and that of the Cagoule, within the pop­u­lar cul­ture and con­flicted pol­i­tics of 1930s France.

Latin America and the United States: A Documentary History

Robert Holden and Eric Zolov (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed., 2010)

Now fully revised in its second edition, Latin America and the United States: A Documentary History features updated selections on current trends, including key new documents on immigration, regional integration, indigenous political movements, democratization, and economic policy.


Early Professional Baseball in Hampton Roads

Peter Stewart (McFarland & Company, 2010)

Peter Stewart tells the story of the Norfolk baseball team (nicknamed the Mary Janes) that played in the Virginia, Eastern and Atlantic leagues from 1884 to 1928.


Portuguese Encounters with Sri Lanka and the Maldives: Translated Texts from the Age of Discoveries

Chandra R. de Silva, ed. (Ashgate Press, 2009)

This collection of documents translated from Portuguese, Arabic, Sinhala and Tamil is designed to provide access to translations of sixteenth and seventeenth century documents which illustrate various aspects of the encounter, combining texts from indigenous sources (in Arabic Sinhala and Tamil) with those from Portuguese histories and archives (in Portuguese and Italian). The documents contribute to the growing understanding that different groups of European colonizers –missionaries, traders and soldiers- had conflicting motivations and objectives. They also indicate that the colonized, while subject to domination and exploitation, were not mere victims but had their own agendas, and on occasion, successfully manipulated the colonial powers. 

Race, Reason, and Massive Resistance: The Diary of David J. Mays, 1954-1959

James R. Sweeney, ed. (University of Georgia Press, 2008)

This book is an edited version of the diary of David J. Mays, a prominent Richmond, Virginia attorney, from the spring of 1954 through the spring of 1959. Mays served as counsel to a legislative commission appointed by Governor Thomas Stanley to devise a response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education. Mays provides an insider’s view of the so-called Gray Commission which devised a plan that tacitly permitted token integration. He also comments on the rejection of that approach by the governor and others loyal to the state’s dominant political leader, U. S. Senator Harry F. Byrd, who favored a policy of massive resistance to school desegregation.  Mays correctly assesses the legal deficiencies of the massive resistance program which resulted in the closing of schools in three communities before it was declared unconstitutional by both state and federal courts.

The Science of Culture in Enlightenment Germany

Michael Carhart (Harvard University Press, 2007)

Michael Carhart examines the approaches of eighteenth-century German scholars to understanding human development by investigating the invention of a new analytic category, "culture." In an effort to define human nature and culture, scholars analyzed ancient texts for insights into language and the human mind in its early stages, together with writings from modern travelers, who provided data about various primitive societies. Some scholars began to doubt the existence of any essential human nature, arguing instead for human culture. If language was the vehicle of reason, what did it mean that all languages were different? Were rationality and virtue universal or unique to a given nation?

Yugoslav-Americans and National Security During World War II

Lorraine M. Lees (University of Illinois Press, 2007)

Explores the persistent tension between ethnicity and national security by focusing on the Yugoslav-American community during World War II; the political issues dividing them;  and the policies developed by the Roosevelt Administration in response. This study illuminates the views of two groups of policy makers: one that perceived America’s European ethnic groups as rife with divided loyalties, and hence a danger to national security; and a second that viewed such communities as valuable sources for political intelligence that would help in the war effort in Europe.  The result is a history which illustrates that the American definition of national security rested firmly on a nativist base.

Armies Without Nations: Public Violence and State Formation in Central America, 1821-1960

Robert Holden (Oxford University Press, 2006)

"Theoretically informed and heavily documented with archival sources from both the United States and Central America, Holden's work is a major contribution to our understanding of the military and political history of the twentieth-century Central America." --American Historical Review

Women, Power, and Religious Patronage in the Middle Ages

Erin Jordan (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006)

"Jordan provides an interesting, very readable, glimpse of the political and religious lives of Jeanne and Marguerite of Flanders. There are moments of real insight, as well as arguments that have significant potential for our examinations of other medieval female rulers and our analysis of the larger role of women in positions of authority in the Middle Ages." --Medieval Feminist Review

Making Trieste Italian, 1918-1954

Maura Hametz (Boydell & Brewer, 2005)

This book examines Trieste's transformation from an imperial commercial centre at the crossroads of the Italian, German and Balkan worlds to an Italian border city on the southern fringe of the iron curtain.

At the Crossroads: Indians and Empire on a Mid-Atlantic Frontier, 1700-1763

Jane Merritt (University of North Carolina Press, 2003)

Before 1755, Indian and white communities in Pennsylvania shared a certain amount of interdependence. They traded skills and resources and found a common enemy in the colonial authorities, including the powerful Six Nations, who attempted to control them and the land they inhabited. Using innovative research in German Moravian records, among other sources, Merritt explores the cultural practices, social needs, gender dynamics, economic exigencies, and political forces that brought native Americans and Euramericans together in the first half of the eighteenth century.

Orientalism and Empire:  North Caucasus Mountain Peoples and the Georgian Frontier, 1845-1917

Austin Jersild (McGill Queen’s University Press, 2002)

"This is a fascinating book about the complexities of Russian empire building in the North Caucasus in the nineteenth century." --Slavic Review


Confederate Industry Manufacturers and Quartermasters in the Civil War

Harold Wilson (University Press of Mississippi, 2002)

A history of the South’s antebellum industrial base, its devastation in war, and its postbellum restoration.