A look at recently published works by UCR faculty, staff, and alumni
“White Reconstruction: Domestic Warfare and the Logics of Genocide”
By Dylan Rodríguez
Fordham University Press
October 2020, 256 pages
Using archival, testimonial, visual, and activist texts, Rodríguez reconsiders the 50-year period leading up to Donald Trump’s 2016 election as a period of “white reconstruction,” and examines the ways in which white supremacy has reinvented itself and persisted long after the Civil Rights Act.
Rodríguez is a professor in the Department of Media and Cultural Studies.
“The Falls of Rome: Crises, Resilience, and Resurgence in Late Antiquity”
By Michele Renee Salzman
Cambridge University Press
November 2021, 462 pages
Focusing on the resilience of generations of Roman citizens, Salzman proposes a fresh interpretation of the tumultuous events in Rome in late antiquity. Relying on textual and architectural remains, Salzman provides a new explanation for the longevity of Rome and its ability to not only survive, but thrive over the last three centuries of the Western Roman Empire.
Salzman is a professor in the Department of History.
“My Heart is a Chainsaw”
By Stephen Graham Jones
August 2021, 416 pages
Named one of NPR’s 2021 Books We Love, “My Heart is a Chainsaw” tells the story of Jade Daniels, a horror film-obsessed, half-Indian outcast with an abusive father and absent mother living in a town that wants nothing to do with her. When blood begins to spill into the waters of Indian Lake, Jade pulls readers into her encyclopedic mind and predicts exactly how the plot will unfold.
Jones is a visiting faculty member with the Palm Desert Low-Residency MFA program.
“High-Risk Homosexual: A Memoir”
By Edgar Gomez ’19
January 2022, 304 pages
Gomez’s memoir about coming of age as a gay, Latino man opens in his uncle’s cockfighting ring in Nicaragua, where the author was sent at age 13 to become a man. The book follows Gomez through the queer spaces where he learned to love being gay and Latino, including Pulse night club in Orlando, a drag queen convention in Los Angeles, and the doctor’s office where he was diagnosed a “high-risk homosexual.”
Gomez earned an MFA in creative writing and writing for performing arts from UCR.
“The Confession of Copeland Cane”
By Keenan Norris ’03, ’09, ’13
The Unnamed Press
June 2021, 288 pages
In a near future where the police state has merged with media conglomerates to create the highly rated Insurgency Alert Desk, Copeland is an eccentric, flip-phone loving kid in East Oakland, California with a sideline hustling sneakers. In the aftermath of a protest rally against police violence, everything changes, and Copeland finds himself caught in the flood of history.
Norris earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in English and doctorate in literature from UCR.
“Joan Didion: The 1980s & 90s”
By Joan Didion; Edited by David Ulin
Library of America
April 2021, 838 pages
In this volume of the late writer’s mid-career works are the essay collections “Salvador,” Didion’s coverage of Cold War politics in the Central American civil war in the early 1980s; “Miami,” a portrait of immigration, exile, the cocaine trade, and political violence; and “After Henry,” featuring reports on Patty Hearst, Nancy Reagan, and the case of the Central Park Five, as well as the novels “Democracy” and “The Last Thing He Wanted,” both narratives of American political life.
Ulin is a core faculty member in the Palm Desert Low-Residency MFA program.