Archives for June 2010

Up for some Thomas Jefferson Quotes?

How are your 4th of July celebration plans coming along? Some of us at PUPQuotable Jefferson cover plan on breaking out the beach umbrellas, while others are looking forward to the fireworks and picnicking. Personally, I’m looking forward to the food and hopefully, some R&R.

Jefferson’s daily quotes have been added to our website, so for you quote and/or Thomas Jefferson lovers, check out today’s quote on The Quotable Jefferson page. Then check back each day for another TJ quote.

As you no doubt know, in honor of Independence Day, this Friday’s book giveaway is The Quotable Jefferson. All our Facebook followers have a chance to win, so if you’re not one, now’s the time to join.

Woooohoooo! Celebration time, here we come.

“Soul-searching for a liberal curriculum” in The Australian

Two PUP titles, The Great Brain Race by Ben Wildavsky and Not for Profit by Martha Nussbaum are reviewed together in this piece from The Australian. The reviewer makes an intriguing connection between the two books, highlighting how they each contribute to the larger debates about higher education in Australia (and by extension elsewhere):

Wildavsky speaks a language that Australian higher education policy is already deeply familiar with: the language of trade. Nussbaum speaks a language that is quite alien to our discussions…Australian universities desperately need a little, to use Nussbaum’s word, soul.

We have sample chapters of both books available on our Web site
The Great Brain Race: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s9113.pdf
Not for Profit: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s9112.pdf

Recipe of the Month: Copywriters’ Crutch Casserole

The recipe of the month is taken from COOKED BOOKS, a cookbook featuring recipes from the staff of Princeton University Press. Enjoy!

Copywriters’ Crutch Casserole

Or Baked Cheese Grits

Bob Bettendorf

Most non-Southerners believe grits are disgusting. So something called “baked cheese grits” must be doubly so, right? Not so, boldly asserts Bob Bettendorf, the world’s leading fake Southerner and grits authority. With his magisterial, pathbreaking, incisive, penetrating, compelling, beautifully illustrated, timely, controversial, provocative, previously unknown, unprecedented, comprehensive, elegantly written, far-reaching, sweeping, pioneering, unique, revealing, forthright, readable, landmark, and scholarly-yet-accessible recipe Copywriter’s Crutch Casserole, Bettendorf persuasively demonstrates that grits are not only edible, but also consumable. Based on original archival research, cutting-edge laboratory work, firsthand field study, industrial espionage, and hours of sitting in the dark thinking hard, this recipe—the first grits recipe ever published in New Jersey (or in standard English)—will change forever the way three or four people look at the humble corn staple.

1 cup of good quality stone-ground yellow grits
(Not processed white grits.You may be able to find good grits at better gourmet stores or online: copywriters can usually tell you where to look.)
3 cups water
1⁄2 –1 stick butter (you decide)
1⁄2 cup milk or cream
2 teaspoons salt (less any salt you use when
cooking grits)
a dash of pepper
2⁄3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2⁄3 cup grated Gruyère cheese
3 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).

Prepare grits as directed on bag (for some brands, this may mean bringing 1 cup of grits and 3 cups of water to a boil and then simmering them for 30–60 minutes, stirring occasionally. You may add a pat or two of butter and a few dashes of salt.)

Pour hot grits into a bowl and stir in all other ingredients.

Pour mixture into a 9 x 13-inch pan or casserole dish.

Bake for 45–60 minutes at 350 degrees (F) or until it doesn’t jiggle too much. It can
jiggle a bit because it will set more as it cools.

Highly recommended: Reheat refrigerated leftover squares by frying them in butter, in a cast-iron skillet.

Even more highly recommended: Take a refrigerated square (about 4 x 4 inches), cut out a circle in the middle using an upside-down drinking glass with a diameter of about 1. inches: start frying square in a buttered skillet, and then crack an egg in the circle, flipping several times as it fries.

Book trailer for The Indignant Generation by Lawrence P. Jackson

The Indignant Generation: A Narrative History of African American Writers and Critics, 1934-1960 won’t be out for many months, but I thought you might like hearing more from the author about how he came to write the book and how he conducted his research. You can place pre-orders online or follow the book on Facebook.

Media Advisory for Afghanistan – Thomas Barfield

Richard Crossley on why he wrote (and photographed) The Crossley ID Guide

I posted about this video a while back, but at that time I linked through to Barnes and Noble.com where you could view it. Now we have it up on YouTube and it is much easier to share this way. Please feel free to embed and share.

combo

The Chronicle Review launches a new blog–WorldWise

Ben Wildavsky is one of the writers for a new Chronicle blog on the state of global higher education. WorldWise launches today and you can read introductory pieces from Ben and his colleagues here: http://chronicle.com/blog/worldwise/32.

A Lively History of the Quirky Math of Voting

Since the very birth of democracy in ancient Greece, the simple act of voting has given rise to mathematical paradoxes that have puzzled some of the greatest philosophers, statesmen, and mathematicians.  Numbers Rule traces the epic quest by these thinkers to create a more perfect democracy and adapt to the ever-changing demands that each new generation places on our democratic institutions.

In a sweeping narrative that combines history, biography, and mathematics, George Szpiro details the fascinating lives and big ideas of great minds such as Plato, Pliny the Younger, Ramon Llull, Pierre Simon Laplace, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, John von Neumann, and Kenneth Arrow, among many others.  Each chapter in this riveting book tells the story of one or more of these visionaries and the problem they sought to overcome, like the Marquis de Condorcet, the eighteenth-century French nobleman who demonstrated that a majority vote in an election might not necessarily result in a clear winner.

Numbers Rule describes the trials and triumphs of the thinkers down through the ages who have dared the odds in pursuit of a just and equitable democracy.

Numbers Rule:
The Vexing Mathematics of Democracy, from Plato to the Present
By George G. Szpiro

Read chapter one online at: http://bit.ly/pup9134

Alex Usher weighs in on The Great Brain Race at The Globe and Mail

Calling The Great Brain Race a “breezy” read, Usher provides a terrific review of the book. He even manages to squeeze in a Lord of the Rings reference (which I will share after the jump)!

Usher also highlights a portion of the book that has received little press to date — the section on for-profit universities. He writes:

The final element of the book that I think is really worth highlighting here is its chapter on for-profit higher education and how a few (primarily American) companies are making millions of dollars through the provision of education in Latin America and Asia.  It’s easy, of course, to pooh-pooh for-profit education; usually, if the choice is between for-profit and free public education, the nod should go to the latter.  But while Wildavsky doesn’t pull punches on issues of quality control, he also gives the sector its due – in much of the world, the choice isn’t between private and public, it’s between private and nothing.  In the way this chapter gets down to the hard brass tacks of the economics of delivering education in distant places, it’s perhaps the book’s most intriguing passage.


I bet you’re really curious about the Lord of the Rings reference, so here is that quick mention, too.

But what does an institution do with prestige once it has it?  It hoards it, basically, like Smaug sitting on his treasure pile.

Jerry Muller interviewed on New Books in History

I confess I was attracted to this book by the title: Capitalism and the Jews (Princeton, 2010). Capitalism is a touchy subject; Jews are a touchy subject. But capitalism and the Jews, that’s a disaster waiting to happen. I don’t suggest you try this, but just imagine what would happen if you started a water-cooler chat with “Hey, what do you think of capitalism and the Jews?” Not pretty. So, being a bit curious, I wanted to know who would write a book with said title and what they could possibly say that wouldn’t get people calling for their head. Well, here’s what I found out.

Read more over at New Books in History and listen to their interview with Jerry Muller.

BOOK FACT FRIDAY

Titan, Saturn’s largest moon is 5,150 km across–nearly 50 percent bigger than our own Moon and 6 percent larger than Mercury.

For twenty-five years following the Voyager mission, scientists speculated about Saturn’s largest moon, a mysterious orb clouded in orange haze. Finally, in 2005, the Cassini-Huygens probe successfully parachuted down through Titan’s atmosphere, all the while transmitting images and data. In the early 1980s, when the two Voyager spacecraft skimmed past Titan, Saturn’s largest moon, they transmitted back enticing images of a mysterious world concealed in a seemingly impenetrable orange haze.   Titan Unveiled is one of the first general interest books to reveal the startling new discoveries that have been made since the arrival of the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan.

A new paperback is available.
http://press.princeton.edu/titles/9166.html

Titan Unveiled:
Saturn’s Mysterious Moon Explored (New in Paper)
Ralph Lorenz & Jacqueline Mitton
With a new afterword by the authors

Not Your Mother’s Democratic Peace Theory: Charles Kupchan and Eli Lake on Bloggingheads.tv

Charles Kupchan of the Council on Foreign Relations and Eli Lake of the Washington Times and New Republic discussed Kupchan’s new book How Enemies Become Friends: The Sources of Stable Peace, how peace breaks out, Obama’s policy on Iran, the new START treaty, the Middle East peace negotiations, and more in a diavlog at Bloggingheads.tv:

Speaking about conflicts past and present, Kupchan argues that one should always “keep the door to diplomacy ajar” even if a diplomatic solution cannot be attained in the short term. Further, third parties such as the United Nations “play very, very important roles [in rapprochement] but we shouldn’t kid ourselves about the need” for the two parties at odds to actually sit down and settle the underlying issues. Third parties, Kupchan says “can only set the table” for diplomacy. Kupchan concludes that “Peace is about diplomacy. Peace is about getting the politics right…. Diplomacy is the currency of peace, not trade or investment.”