Armstrong Undergraduate Journal of History

Book Reviews

The Reaper’s Garden: Death and Power in the World of Atlantic Slavery

Micheal Williams
Middle Georgia State University

In The Reaper's Garden, Brown offers a compelling argument for reexamining the power that death has over a society, and paves the way for further scholarship in other areas of the Atlantic World using this unique approach.

Queer Clout: Chicago and the Rise of Gay Politics

Michael Diambri
Pacific Lutheran University

Queer Clout is a spectacular work in queer history. Stewart-Winter’s book urges LGBTQ+ scholars to continue focusing on specific examples of building queer community in contexts rife with other forms of discrimination and inequality.

The Most Controversial Decision and Hiroshima: Why America Dropped the Atomic Bomb

Alicia Espinosa
Boston University

In the wake of the Smithsonian exhibit featuring Enola Gay, the aircraft that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, two historians entered the debate surrounding the necessity of the atomic bomb.

Bomb Power: The Modern Presidency and the National Security State

Franco Galbo
Niagara University

The author demystifies the development of the first atomic weapon and adds to a growing body of scholarship whose broader aim is to document the expansion of executive power and the rise of the national security state.

Warfare at Sea, 1500–1650: Maritime Conflicts and the Transformation of Europe

Brian Wivell
George Washington University

In his work, Jan Glete makes a convincing case for the role that naval strength plays in the greater European balance of power. The changes of sea power in history led to the gradual shift of political and economic focus from Southern Europe and the Mediterranean to Northern Europe.

An Outsider in the White House

Andrew K. Mengle
United States Military Academy (West Point)

Glad’s work is an in-depth account of the internal workings of Jimmy Carter’s foreign policy staff that successfully illustrates how Carter’s international objectives changed as a result of Zbigniew Brzezinski’s ability to exploit Carter’s inexperience and hijack his diplomatic agenda.

Making Men in Ghana

Aaron Freedman
Swarthmore College

“Despite Miescher’s excellent use of personal narratives in creating self-histories of masculine identity creation, he fundamentally fails to engage these narratives with the national social and political contexts upon which they and their sources crucially depend.”

Killers of the Dream

Eric A. Curry
Armstrong State University

Lillian Smith’s provocative social commentary, Killers of the Dream, examines the history of the New South through the lens of the psychoanalytical model of Freudian analysis in order to explain the outbreak of racism and segregation following the Civil War, and the subsequent dismantlement of slavery.

Josephine Butler

Katherine Soule
Armstrong State University

In Josephine Butler, the author has focused on the woman behind the repeal of the Contagious Diseases Acts-a new approach which helps the reader understand the evolution of personal support for women’s rights among men and women across multiple classes of society.

Comrades at Odds: The United States and India, 1947–1964

Ron Leonhardt
Northern Illinois University

“Although Rotter outlines each aspect of culture in significant detail, he fails to convincingly illustrate that US-Indian relations were centrally influenced by culture.”

Shattered Mirrors: Our Search for Identity and Community in the AIDS Era

Francis Tannie Arnsdorff
Armstrong State University

“Shattered Mirrors is successful in outlining many social obstacles to proper preventative education and the methods needed for slowing the spread of AIDS.”

I Was a Communist for the FBI: Matt Cvetic The True Life and Times of Undercover Agent Matt Cvetic

Charles Halton Thomson
Armstrong State University

“There is no problem with R. E. Gus Payne’s portrayal of Cvetic as a spy, but conflict arises where man meets job and vice-versa.”

A Safe Haven: Harry S. Truman and the Founding of Israel

Frank Oesterheld
Armstrong State University

“It is a detailed, erudite treatment of a very complex series of events that never descends into academic pedantry.”

Mountaineers in Gray: The Nineteenth Tennessee Volunteer Infantry Regiment, C.S.A.

Michelle Teplis
Armstrong State University

“John Fowler achieves excellence in Mountaineers in Gray. The story starts slow, but his vivid descriptions are superb.”

Ecology of a Cracker Childhood

Jordan Shiver
Armstrong State University

Janisse Ray’s Ecology of a Cracker Childhood brings to mind lessons from the reviewer’s childhood.

© 2019 Armstrong Undergraduate Journal of History, Online ISSN 2163-8551
A special initiative of the Department of History,
Armstrong State University, a University System of Georgia Institution