Middle East Reviews: Second Edition

Editors: Mohammed M. Aman PhD and Mary Jo Aman, MLIS

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About the Editors
Mohammed M. Aman, PhD is current Professor (Dean from 1979 to 2002) at the School of Information Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM), Interim Dean, School of Education (2000-2002), and Editor-in-Chief of the peer-reviewed journal, Digest of Middle East Studies (DOMES), published by Wiley-Blackwell. He is the author of scholarly books and journal articles.

Mary Jo Aman, MLIS is Associate Editor of the Digest of Middle East Studies (DOMES). She held management positions at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and prior to UWM, held positions at the Viking Press, Nassau County, N.Y. Library System, Brooklyn Public Library; Board Member of the International Board of Books for Young People (IBBY), and Editor of its quarterly Newsletter.

About the Book
The book brings together reviews of books published on the Middle East and North Africa during the period 2015 to 2018, thus supplementing the earlier edition published in 2016 that covers reviews from 2011 to 2014. The book is a valuable addition to Middle East literature, and will provide an informative read for experts and non-experts on the MENA countries. As with the first edition, this volume covers signed book reviews that cover subjects on the humanities, philosophy, religion, social sciences, history, arts, and literature. Together, the two volumes should serve as valuable sources for current literature on the MENA region and the subjects of interests to readers on the region.

 

The Great Transformation: Scottish Freemasonry 1725-1810

by Dr. Mark C. Wallace

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Modern Freemasonry emerged in Britain after 1700 as a prominent fixture in both British communal and social life. It combined earlier stonemason customs and methods of organization with the popular passion for clubs and societies. Some mocked Masonic lodges and their rituals, but they were an accepted feature on the social scene, given that they avoided political and religious discussion and swore loyalty to the existing regime. The French Revolution, however, caused a severe backlash against the masons in Britain and Europe. Despite its commitment to the establishment, Freemasonry came under suspicion. By the 1790s, lodges were viewed as convenient vehicles for radical groups to pursue covert revolutionary activities. As a result, legislation was passed which attempted to regulate these societies and eradicate any traces of secrecy. This book examines the structure, nature, and characteristics of Scottish Freemasonry in its wider British and European contexts between the years 1725 and 1810. The Enlightenment effectively crafted the modern mason and propelled Freemasonry into a new era marked by growing membership and the creation of the Grand Lodge of Scotland, with the institution becoming part of the contemporary fashion for associated activity.

Dr. Mark C. Wallace is an Associate Professor of History at Lyon College. He teaches British and Scottish history, including British Imperialism, British cultural, social, and intellectual history from the fifteenth century to the present, and the Scottish Enlightenment. A former Visiting Research Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Edinburgh, he has written extensively on Scottish Freemasonry and eighteenth-century Scottish clubs and societies.

 

Policy Perspectives from Promising New Scholars in Complexity, Volume II

Editors:  Dr. Liz Johnson and Dr. Joseph Cochran

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The world is getting more complex causing policy problems to seemingly get bigger and become more intractable. Traditional approaches and conventional methodologies alone are no longer adequate to solve policy problems in our interconnected global environment. Promising new scholars in the field of policy and complexity are breaking boundaries and laying the groundwork for innovative perspectives on how to better define policy problems, impacts, attitudes, and solutions. Whether in the field of economics, education, energy, health, human security, or transportation, the selected essays and research in this book demonstrate how essential new thinking and approaches are needed.

These scholars have demonstrated vision, imagination, diligence, passion, and courage for solving problems. Don’t miss HOW some of the top promising new scholars address problems and add to creating viable solutions to some of the biggest policy issues of our day.

 

The Politics of Impeachment

Margaret Tseng, Editor

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As changes in our political system have developed over the last two centuries, impeachment has grown even more political. The polarization of political parties, the power of interest groups and the expansion of suffrage has deeply impacted who we elect. Those elected officials, in turn, are responsible for overseeing the impeachment process, and their decisions are impacted by party dynamics, interest group influence and the desires of their constituents. While discussion about impeachment seems ubiquitous today, on the state level, impeachments of governors are extremely rare. Over 2,000 people have served as governors in the United States, but only thirteen governors have been impeached and eight removed from office.

On the national level, there have only been two presidential impeachments, but modern presidents have faced increased impeachment efforts. Every president since Ronald Reagan has faced some type of impeachment resolution from the opposing party. President Trump is no exception. Starting from his first day in office, over a million people signed an online impeachment petition and within six months of taking office he faced articles of impeachment from two Democratic congressmen.

This edited volume addresses the increased political nature of impeachment. It is meant to be a wide overview of impeachment on the federal and state level, including: the politics of bringing impeachment articles forward, the politicized impeachment proceedings, the political nature of how one conducts oneself during the proceedings and the political fallout afterwards. The group of men profiled in this book are an interesting, over-the-top group of politicians including Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton, William Sulzer, Evan Mecham, and Rod Blagojevich.

Margaret Tseng is Professor and Chair of the Department of History and Politics at Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia. She also serves as the director of the American Heritage Initiative at Marymount. She earned her Ph.D. from Georgetown University. She is co-editor of The Presidents as Commander-in-Chief series with the Naval Institute Press.

 

Braxton’s Practical Cook Book: Prepared for Economy, Family and Hotel Use

by G. F. Braxton

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George F. Braxton was a renowned chef, who, among other places, worked at The Algonquin Resort during the late 1800s. Chef Braxton is thought to be the first African-American to lead a kitchen in a luxury resort. The Algonquin Resort began in 1889 in St. Andrews, New Brunswick, Canada, and still exists today as a luxury retreat. Sadly, not a great amount of detail is known about Braxton’s life. He was born in Virginia during the late 1850s or early 1860s. He became the Chef at Wellesley College from 1883 to at least 1886. He led the Resort in Canada during the late 1800s, and it appears that he had moved to Massachusetts around 1900. By then he was widowed, but was remarried to Rose McBride in 1901. He opened up a restaurant in Cambridgeport, Massachusetts around November 1901. It does not appear that he had children. Not much of his life is known afterwards, but the Algonquin Resort recently renamed their restaurant Braxton’s in honor of his memory.

 

The Dog and the Child and the Ancient Sailor Man

by Robert Alexander Wason

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Robert Alexander Wason was born in Toledo, Ohio in 1874. He attended high school, later marrying his wife, Emma Louie Brownell, in May 1911. Wason wrote numerous books, particularly for children, including The Wolves (1908) and The Happy Hawkins (1909). He was also known for working on vaudeville sketches, and a comedic opera. In addition to writing, he worked as a clerk in a general store for eight years. He also served a miner, in offices, and a farmer. He spent a lot of time exploring the west, and also served in the Army during the Spanish-American War. His wide variety of experiences were incorporated in his writings. He passed away in Mountain Lakes, New Jersey in 1955.