Friday, February 26, 2010

Dutch Albany Extravaganza

Attention Albany, NY area residents: Save the date and mark your calendars for the Dutch Albany Extravaganza on Sunday, March 7th! From the Capital Region food blog, Table Hopping:

The event will include traditional Dutch treats and coffee at the Bistro/Bar at 74 State, a trolley tour of historic Albany locations, lecture by food historian Peter G. Rose on Dutch art and food, and a traditional Dutch dinner at Marché.

Peter G. Rose, food historian and author, will also be giving a lecture on Dutch art and food. Rose, recipient of the Alice P. Kenney Award for research and writing on the food customs and diet of the Dutch settlers in New Netherland, is author of Summer Pleasures, Winter Pleasures, a cookbook filled with informative and tasty Hudson Valley recipes.

This will be a day of events that you won’t want to miss.

Visit Table Hopping for the pricing and menu information, and check out Peter G. Rose’s cookbook.

Monday, February 22, 2010

SUNY's Statewide Conversation

Last Friday the Press took part in SUNY’s sixth Statewide Conversation at SUNY Plattsburgh. SUNY Press joined forces with SUNY Central Administration to showcase SUNY at Sixty, an in-depth look at SUNY’s history, political landscape, evolving mission, institutional variety, international partnerships, leadership, and much more. Hot off the press, SUNY at Sixty also marks the first set of conference proceedings published by the SUNY XPress digital program. Check out some pictures from the event below. The Press will also be taking part in upcoming conversations at Upstate Medical University and the University at Albany! 

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Great Rabbino interviews Binnie Klein

Another day, another interview for Binnie Klein! This time she discussed Blows to the Head with Jeremy Fine at the "Ultimate Jewish Sports Blog," The Great Rabbino. Klein reflects on her life as a Jewish woman and how she became captivated with the boxing world.
I was quite the unlikely contender – quite sedentary – and certainly did not come from a background of athleticism, growing up in Newark, New Jersey in the 1950s. One day, while training with my coach John Spehar, a former middleweight state champion, and quite a history buff, I asked: “John, were there ever any Jewish boxers?” I was amazed and fascinated to hear about the 26 champions between 1910 and 1940. For reasons I could not fathom at the time, the existence of these Jewish athletes was very important to me, and led me to research their lives and their achievements.
Read the full interview and keep up with Binnie at her website.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Binnie Klein, Boxing, and Boomer Lit

We've all heard that the boomer generation wields an enormous amount of buying power in today's consumer culture. So it only makes sense that the number of "boomer lit" titles seems to be growing steadily in recent years. Women On Writing (WOW) explores this genre and asks "Do readers want to follow the antics of a fifty-something woman as she looks for love while finding herself? Can a literary genre about the boomer generation draw enough interest to sustain it?" The answers appear be to complicated.

SUNY Press author Binnie Klein was interviewed for the article and shared her thoughts on her book, Blows to the Head, and if it fits in with other so-called "boomer lit" books.
Klein has mixed feelings about the boomer lit category. She says any time a genre is created, there’s a tendency to assign it a connotation or quality that doesn’t accurately describe it. On the other hand, boomer lit is an interesting marketing tool about the power of change and reinvention that she finds interesting. “Good books are good books whether you call them a catchy genre or not.”
Read the rest of Binnie's interview and the full article here. Do you read boomer lit? If so, what attracts you to the genre?  And what are some of your favorites?

Before we go, here's a recent interview with Binnie on WTNH's Connecticut Style. Enjoy!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Inside the Olympic Industry

The opening ceremonies for the Vancouver Olympics are Friday night, and Olympic fever is spreading quickly. Vancouver's online source, Straight, is featuring four of the best books on the Olympics—and one of them is Inside the Olympic Industry: Power, Politics, and Activism, by Helen Jefferson Lenskyj. Here's their take on the book:

There are other solid critiques of the Olympics, such as Andrew Jennings’s two Lords of the Rings books and Helen Lenskyj’s more recent Olympic Industry Resistance: Challenging Olympic Power and Propaganda, which was published in 2008. 
But this penetrating analysis by Lenskyj, released in 2000, remains a classic for how thoroughly it exposes the secrecy, elitism, hypocrisy, corruption, and lack of accountability of what she calls the “Olympic industry”. Lenskyj, a Toronto sociologist and activist, wrote the book at the height of a scandal over the Salt Lake City bid committee’s unethical gift-giving to International Olympic Committee delegates. 
It’s worth noting that the Vancouver bid committee never released an itemized list of its expenditures to suppliers of goods and services, so there’s no way of telling if our city won the Games through similar means. Lenskyj’s book points out that bid and organizing committees have never been covered by freedom-of-information legislation, furthering the lack of transparency—though that will change for the London Games in 2012. 
Lenskyj also shows how the Olympic Charter’s ban on “political, religious or racial propaganda” near venues is designed to stifle dissent in host cities. In addition, Inside the Olympic Industry shines a light on how the media and universities have been complicit in suppressing public debate. “A beautified, gentrified city with state-of-the-art professional sport facilities has no value to men, women, and children whose basic needs are not being met,” Lenskyj writes.

If you want to know why there will be so many protesters on the streets of Vancouver on Friday (February 12), this book provides the answer.

Read the rest of the list here, and check out Helen's other books on the Olympics.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Black History Month

Every other day this month, the SUNY Press homepage will be featuring a select list of titles for Black History Month. Our African American Studies list alone consists of more than 120 titles. Celebrate the month by exploring books written by and for African Americans.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Look Who's Talking: Eve Pell

Eve Pell (above, left), author of We Used to Own the Bronx, was recently interviewed at Boca Grande Talk, the online home of Florida's Gasparilla Gazette. Eve was in town to visit former roommate Alice Gorman (above, right), a Boca Grande resident, and to speak to a sold-out benefit audience at Johann Fust Community Library with "revolutionary tales of her unique life and times." Enjoy the full Q&A here.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Examiner reviews Blows to the Head

Our boxing week continues. Today we have a review of Binnie Klein's book to share, courtesy of Joseph Roche at The Examiner. Here's an excerpt:

The most interesting parts of Klein’s book are the little things about the Jewish experience that are shared across generations. The stories of Jewish fighters changing their names so that their mother’s wouldn’t find out that they were boxing (to Jewish mother’s boxing was a shanda), or stories of Klein’s family and her upbringing – the father who for much of the story she seems in a mixture of fear and reverence of winds up at the end being somewhat redeemed with the simple acknowledgement that he always kept driving to the “motel with the pool.”
Read the full review and visit Binnie's website for more on Blows to the Head.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Book signing for Blows to the Head

Binnie Klein read from and signed copies of her book, Blows to the Head: How Boxing Changed My Mind, this past Saturday at Barnes & Noble in North Haven, Connecticut. Binnie and her boxing coach, John Spehar, struck a pose at the event. As Binnie says: "In mid-life, I picked up the unusual stone of boxing that appeared on my path and boxer/coach John Spehar helped me realize a dream."

Binnie, signing copies.