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New faculty and graduate student publications in 2011-2012

An overview of the latest books and articles from UCSB historians.

  • Beth Depalma Digeser, The Threat to Public Piety: Christians, Platonists and the Great Persecution (Cornell UP, 2012) (amazon)
    In A Threat to Public Piety, Elizabeth DePalma Digeser reexamines the origins of the Great Persecution (AD 303-313), the last eruption of pagan violence against Christians before Constantine enforced the toleration of Christianity within the Empire. Challenging the widely accepted view that the persecution enacted by Emperor Diocletian was largely inevitable, she points out that in the forty years leading up to the Great Persecution Christians lived largely in peace with their fellow Roman citizens. Why, Digeser asks, did pagans and Christians, who had intermingled cordially and productively for decades, become so sharply divided by the turn of the century?
  • John W.I. Lee, The Persian Empire (The Teaching Company, 2012) (Great Courses web site).
    The Persian Empire is your opportunity to see one of the greatest empires in the ancient world from a fresh new perspective: its own. Over the span of 24 fascinating lectures, Professor John W. I. Lee of the University of California, Santa Barbara’a distinguished teacher and an expert on the long-buried secrets of the ancient world–takes the role of a history detective and examines Persian sources to reveal what we now know about this grand civilization. Tapping into the latest scholarship on the Persian Empire, this course is sure to fill in some critical gaps in your understanding and appreciation of the sweep of ancient history and its undeniable effect on later civilizations.
  • Luke S. Roberts, Performing the Great Peace: Political Space and Open Secrets in Tokugawa Japan (University of Hawai’i Press, 2012) (amazon)
    [review in Japanese newspaper]
  • Paul Spickard, Race and Immigration in the United States: New Histories (Routledge, 2011) (amazon, Routledge Press with TOC)
    Race and Immigration in the United States is a collection of the very best of the new generation of scholarship in the field of immigration history. The traditional Ellis Island model of immigrant assimilation is no longer adequate to understand American history. A more subtle model is needed–one which does not exclude peoples of color from view, nor treat the experiences of European immigrants as a template for the experiences of non-white migrants. In this important collection, Paul Spickard draws together essays that illuminate the crucial differences that race makes in the study of American history.


  • AUTHOR, TITLE (PUBLISHER, 2012) (amazon, google books, PUBL Press with TOC and sample chapter)
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    Alumni and Graduate Student Publications

      • Nicole Archambeau (PhD Medieval History, 2009), “Healing Options during the Plague: Survivor Stories from a Fourteenth-Century Canonization Inquest,” in: Bulletin of the History of Medicine Winter 2011.
      • Rachel Winslow, “Immigration law and Improvised Policy in the Making of International Adoption, 1948-1961,”Journal of Policy History 24:2 (April 2012).
        This article examines how Holt Adoption Program, led by Oregon evangelicals and adoptive parents Harry and Bertha Holt, and professional social welfare organizations competed to control and reform refugee policy in response to American families’ increasing interest in adopting both GI babies and non-interracial orphans from Korea. It argues that the Holts acted as informal policymakers who took advantage of a policy vacuum–created by conflicting state laws and a lack of federal or international adoption legislation–to fashion their own child placement standards that served their adoption philosophies and religious worldview.
      • Alison Rose Jefferson (Public History PhD program at UCSB since Fall 2009; MA Historic Preservation, USC 2007; BA Pomona College), has been interviewed in two recent documentaries. The WHITE WASH documentary film was recently screened on campus, sponsored by the UCSB History Department. It is available for sale and streaming at various outlets: Amazon, Netflix. WHITE WASH explores the complexity of race in America through the eyes of the ocean via the history of African Americans and water culture from slavery, civil rights wade-ins to surfing in contemporary times. In examining the history of world water culture, and the history of black identity as it triumphs and evolves in the minds of black surfers, we learn about the power of transcending race as a constructive phenomenon. The film delves into how this subject has been interpreted and how the collective American cultural memory has included or not included these stories in the national discourse. She is also featured as a historian in a film on the first recorded African American/Mexican surfer in Southern California, Nick Gabaldon. This film, 12 Miles North: The Nick Gabaldon Story, was sponsored by NIKE for a Black history month program. A version of this short documentary is available for viewing on facebook.


    From the archives

      • News item about five 2007 faculty publications.


    • News item about eight 2008 faculty books, as well as graduate student and alumni publications.



    • News item about eight 2009-2010 faculty books, as well as many graduate student and alumni publications.



    • News item about 2013-2015 faculty books, as well as many graduate student and alumni publications, awards and achievements.


    hm 3/5/12, 4/5/12 [restored from News item 149 on 11/11/14, via internet archive]