University of Rochester

Rochester Review
January–February 2012
Vol. 74, No. 3

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Books & Recordings


Medieval Music

By Honey Meconi

Ashgate, 2011

Meconi, professor of music in the School of Arts and Sciences and professor of musicology at the Eastman School, offers an overview of major issues in medieval performance practice as part of Ashgate’s Library of Essays on Music Performance Practice series. Meconi is also the author of commentary accompanying Extreme Singing: The La Rue Requiem and other Flemish Masterpieces of the Renaissance, by the Ann Arbor–based a cappella group Vox Early Music Ensemble (Self-published, 2011).

When the Pastor is Your Husband: The Joy and Pain of Ministry Wives

By Donna Bordelon Alder ’71 (MS)

Beacon Hill Publishing, 2011

Analyzing responses to her own national survey of American pastors’ wives as well as results of six other surveys, Alder distills advice on the “joys, the challenges, the discouragements and the success strategies” of women married to ministers from a variety of denominations, geographic regions, and age groups. Alder is a professor emeritus of biology at Roberts Wesleyan College and ordained as a pastor. Her husband, father, son, and son-in-law are pastors.

Signifying Without Specifying: Racial Discourse in the Age of Obama

By Stephanie Li

Rutgers University Press, 2011

Li, assistant professor of English at Rochester, argues that American politicians and writers of color have adopted a new means of talking about race: one that avoids explicit references to race in favor of terms that carry cultural resonance within specific racial groups. The book explores literary works by Barack Obama, Toni Morrison, Jhumpa Lahiri, and others.

Documents in Crisis: Nonfiction Literatures in Twentieth-Century Mexico

By Beth E. Jörgensen

SUNY Press, 2011

Jörgensen, professor of Spanish at Rochester, explores 20th-century Mexican nonfiction literature—such as autobiographies, memoirs, historical essays, and testimonies—as responses to the natural and industrial disasters and political and social unrest that overshadowed Mexican life in the last century.

Managing Temperature Effects in Nanoscale Adaptive Systems

By David Wolpert ’04, ’11 (PhD) and Paul Ampadu

Springer, 2012

Wolpert, a chip back-end design engineer at IBM, and Ampadu, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at Rochester, coauthor an overview of new methods for controlling the effects of temperature on nanoscale circuits and systems.

Active Consciousness: Awakening the Power Within

By Amy L. Lansky ’77

R. L. Ranch Press, 2011

Lansky—a computer scientist and former artificial intelligence researcher who left the field of computer science in 1998 to pursue an interest in homeopathic medicine—offers “a wide-ranging exploration of human consciousness that weaves together the science of the paranormal, the teaching of mystics, and meditative exercises.”

From There to Here: Anatomy of a Divorce

By William E. Powell ’56, ’60M (MD)

Strategic Book Group, 2011

A retired obstetrician who studied English as an undergraduate at Rochester, Powell tells the story of the fictional Peter Wyse from his courtship and engagement to his true love, Sarah, to the disintegration of the marriage as a result of “deceit, betrayal, and infidelity.”

Bible & Music: Influences of the Old Testament on Western Music

By Max Stern ’69E

KTAV Publishing House, 2011

Stern, a composer, professor of music at the Ariel University Center, and music critic for the Jerusalem Post, offers an overview of the influence of the Bible on the history of Western music. The book explores key biblical characters and themes across genres of music, including traditional, folk, liturgical, popular, classical, and contemporary.

Man in the Music: The Creative Life and Work of Michael Jackson

By Joseph Vogel

Sterling Publishing, 2011

Drawing on music reviews, news stories, and interviews with Jackson and major collaborators, Vogel, a doctoral candidate in English at Rochester, traces the development of Jackson’s music in its social and historical context.

Print, Visuality, and Gender in Eighteenth-Century Satire: “The Scope in Ev’ry Page”

By Katherine Mannheimer

Routledge, 2011

Mannheimer, assistant professor of English at Rochester and a specialist in 18th-century print culture, explores the uses and meanings of elaborate typographical design among satirists such as Alexander Pope, Jonathan Swift, and others.

The One and the Many: Contemporary Collaborative Art in a Global Context

By Grant H. Kester ’97 (PhD)

Duke University Press, 2011

Kester, professor of art history and chair of visual arts at the University of California at San Diego, argues that the global proliferation of collaborative art in the past two decades is fostering a redefinition of artistic autonomy, representing an important transition within the continuum of the avant-garde.

The Lives of Transgender People

By Genny Beemyn ’01W (MS) and Sue Rankin

Columbia University Press, 2011

Beemyn, director of the Stonewall Center at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and Rankin, associate professor of education at the Pennsylvania State University, examine the varied experiences of gender nonconforming individuals in the United States today through interviews with transgender people.

Shear Murder

By Nancy J. Cohen ’70, ’70N

Five Star Press, 2012

South Florida hairdresser Marla Shore returns in a new installment of Cohen’s Bad Hair Day Mystery series. A friend’s wedding turns into a funeral when Marla, a bridesmaid, finds the matron of honor dead under the cake table, the cake knife protruding from her chest.

The Critical Reception of Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises

By Peter Hays ’59

Camden House, 2011

Hays, professor emeritus of English at the University of California at Davis, surveys the history of the critical reception of The Sun Also Rises from the novel’s release in 1926 to the present as part of Camden House’s Literary Criticism in Perspective series.

Handprint Data Capture in Forms Processing: A Systems Approach

By K. Bradley Paxton ’71 (PhD)

Fossil Press, 2011

Paxton, the founder and CEO of Advanced Document Imaging, offers a guide for professionals working with large surveys, data capture, and processing, on how to extract data from forms, both accurately and cost- effectively. The book is based on Paxton’s work with the U.S. Census Bureau on both the 2000 and 2010 censuses.

Gender, Honor, and Charity in Late Renaissance Florence

By Philip Gavitt ’72

Cambridge University Press, 2011

Gavitt, associate professor of history at St. Louis University, examines the evolution of charitable institutions in Florence during a time of social unrest and growing economic inequality. While new institutions formed and old ones expanded, elite Florentine families guided this process to maintain their wealth, power, and prestige, Gavitt argues.


Verdi Requiem

By the Sacramento Choral Society & Orchestra

SCSO, 2011

The Sacramento Choral Society and Orchestra, led by founding conductor Donald Kendrick ’85E (DMA), perform Verdi’s Requiem live at the Mondavi Center of the University of California at Davis in March 2011. The group also recorded a live performance with the Sacramento Children’s Chorus of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana in 2010 at the Mondavi Center.

Variations by Brahms and Schumann

By Robert Silverman ’70E (DMA)

Stereophile, 2011

The pianist Silverman performs Brahms’s Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Händel and Schumann’s Symphonic Etudes. Silverman also released Complete Mozart Sonatas (IsoMike) in 2010.


By the Westland Trio

Westland Trio, 2010

The jazz trio that includes Damon Zick ’97E (tenor saxophone and bass clarinet) performs a mix of jazz, blues, folk, and pop. Zick also performs with the world music group Quarteto Nuevo on their self-titled recording (Quarteto Nuevo, 2010), which features a mix of Middle Eastern, Indian, Mexican, and flamenco music.


By Ben Kono ’89E

Nineteen-Eight Records, 2011

Woodwind performer and composer Kono leads a sextet in his debut recording. The sextet includes percussionist John Hollenbeck ’90E, ’91E (MM). Kono is the woodwinds chair in the musical Jersey Boys, now in its sixth year on Broadway.


By Chesley Kahmann ’52

Orbiting Clef Productions, 2011

Pianist, singer, and composer Kahmann performs 14 new original songs. Collision is volume six in The Kahmann Touch song series.

Books & Recordings is a compilation of recent work by University alumni, faculty, and staff. For inclusion in an upcoming issue, send the work’s title, publisher information, author, and author’s class year, along with a brief description, to Books & Recordings, Rochester Review, 22 Wallis Hall, P. O. Box 270044, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY 14627-0044; or by e-mail to