Hot Off Penn Press: New for November

Check out our latest batch of new titles below, including a new edition of a classic of medieval history, an exploration of the value of populism in American politics, a sweeping analysis of Jewish American literature, and much more!

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A Medieval LifeA Medieval Life: Cecilia Penifader and the World of English Peasants Before the Plague
Judith M. Bennett

Praise for an earlier edition:

"Judith M. Bennett has [told] a story that is at the same time the biography of a woman and the portrait of a world."—Speculum

A history of village life told through the experiences of Cecilia Penifader, a peasant woman who lived in the early fourteenth century, the second edition of A Medieval Life features an entirely revamped illustration program and sidebars that reveal how medieval historians are able to reconstruct the past from scattered evidence.

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Second Edition
192 pages | 6 x 9 | 25 illus.
Paperback | ISBN 978-0-8122-2469-6 | $26.50t | £20.99
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9735-5 | $26.50s | £20.50
A volume in the Middle Ages Series

In Defense of PopulismIn Defense of Populism: Protest and American Democracy
Donald T. Critchlow

"Populism has become a dirty word—the dirty word—in politics, in America and around the world. But, as historian and longtime political analyst Donald Critchlow explains, popular activism, of the left and of the right, has been a major force in American history, and usually a force for the good. His evenhanded analysis will prove revealing to anyone tired of the name-calling that pervades so much political commentary today."—Michael Barone, senior political analyst, Washington Examiner

Covering progressivism in the early twentieth century, the New Deal, civil rights activism, the Reagan Revolution, and the environmental and Tea Party movements, In Defense of Populism argues that grassroots activism is essential to transforming both Democratic and Republican parties into instruments of reform.

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224 pages | 6 x 9 | 1 table
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5276-7 | $29.95a | £23.99
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9773-7 | $29.95s | £23.50


Capitalism ContestedCapitalism Contested: The New Deal and Its Legacies
Edited by Romain Huret, Nelson Lichtenstein, and Jean-Christian Vinel

"An impressive collection of well-researched, pointed, and thought-provoking essays."—Howard Brick, author of Transcending Capitalism: Visions of a New Society in Modern American Thought

Arguing the New Deal order is a product of a particular set of political institutions, social movements, ideological propensities, and legislative initiatives, Capitalism Contested offers an analysis of the degree to which that order persists and the ways in which it has been transcended or overthrown.

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360 pages | 6 x 9 | 3 charts, 1 table
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5262-0 | $45.00s | £37.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9762-1 | $45.00s | £35.00

Republican CharacterNOW IN PAPERBACK
Republican Character: From Nixon to Reagan
Donald T. Critchlow

"Donald Critchlow has written a book called Republican Character at a time when the phrase sounds almost loaded. A year into Donald Trump's presidency, the topic of his perceived character defects and what voters ought to make of them has been endlessly canvassed. Happily, Critchlow, a professor at Arizona State University, is a political historian, not a pundit, and his slim volume is not an entry in that debate (though it is far from irrelevant to it). It is a compact and illuminating history of four Republicans who pursued the presidency in the latter half of the 20th century: Richard Nixon, Nelson Rockefeller, Barry Goldwater, and Ronald Reagan . . . [Critchlow] wants to show, through the intertwined biographies of these four men, that character is critically important to political success (or failure)."—The American Prospect

Republican Character examines the role of temperament, personality, character, and leadership ability in political success. Donald T. Critchlow compares the strengths and weaknesses of four key Republicans—Richard Nixon, Nelson Rockefeller, Barry Goldwater, and Ronald Reagan—as well as the uneasy alliances that arose between them.

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220 pages | 6 x 9
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-4977-4 | $34.95t | £27.99
Paperback | ISBN 978-0-8122-2471-9 | $19.95a | £15.99
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9463-7 | $34.95s | £27.00
A volume in the Haney Foundation Series


The Visigothic Kingdom in IberiaThe Visigothic Kingdom in Iberia: Construction and Invention
Santiago Castellanos

"Santiago Castellanos is one of the most significant figures in early medieval Spanish historiography, and one of the few experts on the Visigoths with a wide enough range to be able to write such a sophisticated general study."—Chris Wickham, University of Oxford

Reading early medieval Spanish documents that are little known to many Anglophone scholars, including records of church councils, sermons, and letters, Santiago Castellanos charts the formation of the Visigothic kingdom in Iberia and how it was later reinvented from the episcopal point of view.

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288 pages | 6 x 9 | 8 illus.
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5253-8 | $79.95s | £66.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9742-3 | $79.95s | £61.50


A World at SeaA World at Sea: Maritime Practices and Global History
Edited by Lauren Benton and Nathan Perl-Rosenthal

"Encompassing a vast array of methodological, geographical, and argumentative perspectives, A World at Sea makes a timely and important intervention into critical studies of seas, oceans, and empires in global history."—Philip Stern, Duke University

A World at Sea sharpens and expands our understanding of how the maritime world contributed to global transformations in the early modern world, from inventing knowledge-making practices to pioneering new ways of organizing labor to legal experiments that spanned land and sea.

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280 pages | 6 x 9 | 12 illus.
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5241-5 | $45.00s | £37.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9734-8 | $45.00s | £35.00
A volume in the Early Modern Americas series

The World Colonization MadeThe World Colonization Made: The Racial Geography of Early American Empire
Brandon Mills

"Brandon Mills deftly compares U.S. colonization in Africa with British efforts in Sierra Leone and, even more impressively, with Indian removal efforts at home. He provides not only a comprehensive history of Liberian colonization but also an exemplary account of the efforts to colonize black people in Africa and the Americas between the founding of the nation and the end of the Civil War."—Amy Greenberg, Penn State University

Focusing on the creation of the African Colonization Society (ACS) in the nineteenth century, The World Colonization Made chronicles the rise and fall of the colonization movement—an ideology that enabled Americans to envision a world of self-governing republics that harmonized with the racialized political institutions at home.

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288 pages | 6 x 9 | 7 illus.
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5250-7 | $45.00s | £37.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9732-4 | $45.00s | £35.00
A volume in the Early American Studies series


Rabbi Leo BaeckRabbi Leo Baeck: Living a Religious Imperative in Troubled Times
Michael A. Meyer

"A stirring biography written with equanimity and pathos. Michael A. Meyer is an authority on the history and theology of Reform Judaism in Germany and America, a master of the modern history of German Jewry, and a scholar fully conversant with the annihilation of that Jewry by the Nazis. That expertise has enabled him to construct a rich and elegant narrative."—Ismar Schorsch, Jewish Theological Seminary

Drawing upon a variety of sources, especially his subject's own writings, Michael A. Meyer presents a biography of one of the most significant Jewish religious thinkers of the twentieth century. Rabbi Leo Baeck gives equal consideration to Baeck as an intellectual and as a courageous leader of his community under the shadow of Nazism.

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288 pages | 6 x 9 | 13
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5256-9 | $59.95s | £50.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9951-9 | $59.95s | £46.50
A volume in the Jewish Culture and Contexts series

The Rise and Fall of Jewish American LiteratureThe Rise and Fall of Jewish American Literature: Ethnic Studies and the Challenge of Identity
Benjamin Schreier

"Benjamin Schreier here calls for radical rethinking of the basic ethnographic premise that has shaped Jewish American literary studies. An astute and provocative genealogy of the emergence of the field and its institutional settings, this book asks for much needed theorizing of the concepts of identity that underlie Jewish Studies more broadly. Schreier's passionate and polemical wake-up call will reinvigorate the conversation about Jewish American literature."—Hana Wirth-Nesher, Tel Aviv University

In a polemic against the unexamined foundations and stagnant state of the field, Benjamin Schreier critically analyzes a series of professionally powerful clichés about Jewish American literary history and how they came into being on the way to contesting the foundational ethnological presuppositions of Jewish Studies.

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224 pages | 6 x 9
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5257-6 | $49.95s | £41.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9756-0 | $49.95s | £38.50
A volume in the Jewish Culture and Contexts series


In Good FaithIn Good Faith: Arabic Translation and Translators in Early Modern Spain
Claire M. Gilbert

"In Good Faith makes important arguments regarding the role of Arabic to Spanish and Spanish to Arabic translation in early modern Iberian governance. Claire M. Gilbert's accounts of translators and their networks, dynasties, and struggles to create and preserve authority are fascinating; the exploration, throughout, of the paradoxes of translation is excellent; and the archival research is impressive."—Thomas Burman, University of Notre Dame

Claire M. Gilbert develops the notion of "fiduciary translation" and uses it to illuminate the ways in which Arabic-Spanish translators in early modern Spain made themselves indispensable for the administration of the empire, despite the increased animosity Arabic speakers faced in the age of the Inquisition.

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320 pages | 6 x 9 | 10 illus.
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5246-0 | $69.95s | £58.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9739-3 | $69.95s | £54.00

In the Manner of the FranksIn the Manner of the Franks: Hunting, Kingship, and Masculinity in Early Medieval Europe
Eric J. Goldberg

"In the Manner of the Franks is an excellent and insightful book that will serve as the standard reference work on the hunt for many years, not only for historians of late Antique and early medieval studies but also for anyone interested in the cultural history of hunting in the Christian West."—Helmut Reimitz, Princeton University

Featuring more than sixty illustrations, In the Manner of the Franks traces the long history of early medieval hunting from the fourth through the tenth centuries. Eric J. Goldberg focuses chiefly on elite men and the changing role that hunting played in articulating kingship, status, and manhood in the post-Roman world.

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384 pages | 7 x 10 | 63 illus.
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5235-4 | $89.95s | £74.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9729-4 | $89.95s | £69.50
A volume in the Middle Ages Series

Cistercian Stories for Nuns and MonksCistercian Stories for Nuns and Monks: The Sacramental Imagination of Engelhard of Langheim
Martha G. Newman

"In Cistercian Stories for Nuns and Monks, Martha G. Newman places the monk, author, and sometime abbot Engelhard of Langheim in the social, spiritual, and intellectual milieu of late twelfth-century monastic life. Her important and fascinating book enriches our understanding of a period of tremendous change as universities displaced monasteries as centers of learning, the Mass displaced prayer as a core spiritual experience, and monasticism seemingly gave way to new forms of religious life and devotion."—Fiona Griffiths, Stanford University

In Cistercian Stories for Nuns and Monks, Martha G. Newman shows how Engelhard of Langheim's late twelfth-century tales about Cistercian monks illuminate the religiosity of Cistercian nuns. Engelhard's writings locate a sacramental value in everyday objects and behaviors and teach a spiritual formation that nuns and monks could share.

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320 pages | 6 x 9 | 5 illus.
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5258-3 | $59.95s | £50.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9758-4 | $59.95s | £46.50
A volume in the Middle Ages Series


Dignity Rights: Courts, Constitutions, and the Worth of the Human Person
Erin Daly

This ground-breaking book examines how judicial interpretations of dignity redefine what it means to be human in the modern world. It features a new preface by the author, in which she articulates how, over the past decade, dignity rights cases have evolved to incorporate the convergence of human rights and environmental rights.

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Updated Edition
248 pages | 6 x 9
Paperback | ISBN 978-0-8122-2475-7 | $29.95s | £23.99
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-2479-5 | $29.95s | £23.50
A volume in the Democracy, Citizenship, and Constitutionalism series


The Early Martyr NarrativesThe Early Martyr Narratives: Neither Authentic Accounts nor Forgeries
Éric Rebillard

"A breakthrough work. Éric Rebillard is uniquely and eminently qualified to confront the problem of the dual legacy of the Protestant-Catholic polemics of the Reformation that focused on the 'genuine' status of the accounts of saints and martyrs on the one hand, and of the emerging concerns of 'scientific historiography' of the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries on the other."—Brent Shaw, author of Sacred Violence: African Christians and Sectarian Hatred in the Age of Augustine

In The Early Martyr Narratives, Éric Rebillard argues that accounts of ancient martyrs should be considered fluid "living texts" that existed between fact and fiction and made it possible for audiences to readily accept the historicity of a martyr while at the same time not expect to hear or read a truthful story.

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192 pages | 6 x 9
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5260-6 | $59.95s | £50.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9760-7 | $59.95s | £46.50
A volume in the Divinations: Rereading Late Ancient Religion series


The Ecology of HomicideThe Ecology of Homicide: Race, Place, and Space in Postwar Philadelphia
Eric C. Schneider

Examining the transcripts of nearly two hundred murder trials, The Ecology of Homicide presents the voices of victims and perpetrators of crime, as well as the enforcers of the law, to show how the combined effects of poverty and disinvestment accumulated to sustain and deepen what Eric C. Schneider calls an "ecology of violence."

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264 pages | 6 x 9
Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-5248-4 | $39.95s | £33.00
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-9783-6 | $39.95s | £31.00

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