People of SU

Good Reads Blossom

Written by Lincoln Vander Veen

March 24, 2023

A graphic featuring the books for spring.

SU faculty authors’ latest offerings touch on subjects from the criminal justice system and travel to programming and global politics. 

As we mark the beginning of the quarter at Seattle University, allow these fascinating faculty books to “spring” you into a season of reading and discernment.

The Myth of the Community Fix: Inequality and the Politics of Youth Punishment by Sarah Cate, PhD

The Myth of the Community Fix, written by Assistant Professor of Political Science Sarah Cate, PhD, is a detailed examination of the limitations and pitfalls of pursuing the community-based reform movement in the American criminal justice system. Cate argues that these reforms have resulted in a dangerous constellation of privatized institutions with little oversight. Focusing on case studies of three leading states for this model of reform—Texas, California and Pennsylvania—the book provides a comprehensive look at the alarming on-the-ground consequences of the turn toward community in an era of austerity.  

“As one of the most pressing civil rights issues of today, it is important to understand why so many people are locked up in prisons in the U.S. and how we can best end the horrific consequences of these policies,” explains Cate. “I wrote this book to advance efforts to dismantle mass incarceration. The book concludes by laying out an alternative framework for prison reform, one rooted in a public goods approach.” 

Get Cate’s book here.

Modern Travel in World History by Tom Taylor, PhD

Associate Professor of History Tom Taylor, PhD, wrote a book—Modern Travel in World History—that examines the impact and experiences of travel in the modern world using three themes. First, development of transportation from ocean going vessels to railways and steamships to cars and planes. Second, understanding significant travel movements, such as the Atlantic Slave Trade, patterns of immigration and refugees fleeing one place for another. And last, personal perspectives from travelers and how their accounts and records are important to understand the history of the modern world. 

“The idea for Modern Travel in World History germinated when I was starting to teach world history classes at Seattle University and I pondered how to make the often myriad of peoples and places I was discussing accessible to learn and enjoyable to study,” says Taylor. “Travel allowed me to examine cross-cultural understandings and comparisons. The stories of travelers brought the past to life and gave students characters through which to explore issues of historical causality and agency.”

Get Taylor’s book here

Object-Oriented Design Choices by Adair Dingle, PhD

A winner of a 2022 Choice Outstanding Academic Title Award, Object-Oriented Design Choices by Professor of Computer Science Adair Dingle, PhD, examines different design techniques employed in Object-Oriented Programming. The emphasis on design as a contract with the client, delineating external and internal responsibilities, permits clear identification of costs and benefits, even amid competing concerns. The intent of identifying design variants is to recognize and manage conflicting goals such as short- versus long-term utility, stability versus flexibility and storage versus computation. 

“I’ve been teaching software design—a neglected topic both in and outside of academia—for two decades,” explains Dingle, “and I’ve been assembling a variety of sources each quarter since there was no design book available. Finally, I decided to write a text covering the topic more holistically.”

Get Dingle’s book here.

Identity in the Shadow of a Giant: How the Rise of China is Changing Taiwan by Yitan Li, PhD, and co-authors

Identity in the Shadow of a Giant: How the Rise of China is Changing Taiwan by Associate Professor and Chair of Political Science Yitan Li, PhD, investigates the implications of the global ascent of China on cross-Strait relations and the identity of Taiwan as a democratic state. Examining an array of factors that affect identity formation, Li, who is also director of Asian Studies, and his co-authors consider the influence of the rapid military and economic rise of China on Taiwan’s identity. 

“This book is published at a crucial time juncture of cross-Strait relations,” explains Li. “On the one hand, tensions between the United States and China continue to rise. On the other hand, one wonders if the U.S. would ever effectively come to Taiwan’s defense if cross-Strait relations deteriorate into conflict.”

Get Li’s book here