New release from GMU Press

The George Mason University Press has released The Unlikely Reformer: Carter Glass and Financial Regulation by Matthew P. Fink.

Recently described as “the single most important lawmaker in the history of American finance,” Carter Glass nonetheless remains a much misunderstood and overlooked figure in that history. Glass is most widely remembered as the sponsor (with Henry Steagall) of the Glass-Steagall provisions of the U.S.A. Banking Act of 1933, which legally separated commercial and investment banking. But the Banking Act was the culminating achievement of a monumental career as a congressman, secretary of the Treasury, and senator—a career marked by ferocity and paradox.

Glass was a small-government conservative and vocal racist who was, however, also responsible for some of the most important progressive pieces of financial legislation in U.S. history, including the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, which created mechanisms for addressing financial panics and managing the nation’s currency, and provisions of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, which created the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the model New Deal agency. In The Unlikely Reformer, Matthew Fink explains how these apparent contradictions emerged together at a pivotal moment in the modern American era. As the first new study dedicated to Carter Glass published in over seventy-five years, it updates our perspective on the welter of assumptions, beliefs, and motivations underpinning a regulatory project that continues to be topical in the tumultuous contemporary moment.

About the Author: Matthew P. Fink is the author of The Rise of Mutual Funds: An Insider’s View. He is Director of the Retirement Income Industry Association and former President of the Investment Company Institute.

About GMU Press: The George Mason University Press supports the academic mission of George Mason University by publishing peer-reviewed, scholarly works of distinction, written by authors from a wide range of intellectual perspectives, for a diverse, worldwide readership. GMU Press publishes in a variety of disciplines with special focus on the history, politics, and culture of Northern Virginia and the wider District of Columbia metropolitan area, as well as other topics such as public policy, international affairs, and higher education.

GMU Press Book Launch: George Washington and Native Americans

Join us for a panel discussion in celebration of the recent publication of George Washington and Native Americans, the latest from the George Mason University Press, on Thursday, April 4, at 3 p.m. in Fenwick 2001.

Richard Harless (author, George Washington and Native Americans), George Oberle (History Librarian, University Libraries and Affiliate Faculty, History and Art History, George Mason University), and Randolph Scully (Associate Professor, History and Art History, George Mason University) will discuss the complexities of this topic in American history and will include time for Q&A with the audience. Books will be available for purchase, and refreshments will be provided (courtesy of the University Bookstore).

About the book: George Washington had contact with Native Americans throughout most of his life. His first encounter as a teenager left him with the impression that they were nothing more than an “ignorant people.” As a young man he fought both alongside and against Native Americans during the French and Indian War and gained a grudging respect for their fighting abilities. During the American Revolution, Washington made it clear that he welcomed Indian allies as friends but would do his utmost to crush Indian enemies. As president, he sought to implement a program to “civilize” Native Americans by teaching them methods of agriculture and providing the implements of husbandry that would enable them to become proficient farmers—the only way, he believed, Native Americans would survive in a white-dominated society. Yet he discovered that his government could not protect Indian lands as guaranteed in countless treaties, and the hunger for Indian land by white settlers was so rapacious that it could not be controlled by an inadequate federal military establishment. While Washington appeared to admit the failure of the program, this book—a unique and necessary exploration of Washington’s experience with and thoughts on Native Americans—contends he deserves credit for his continued efforts to implement a policy based on the just treatment of America’s indigenous peoples.

About the author: Richard Harless has a Ph.D. in American History from George Mason University. He is a retired public school teacher, counselor, and coach. He worked as a research assistant at Mason’s Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media and was a fellow at the Fred W. Smith Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon. He is currently teaching at various colleges including Saint Mary’s Honor College in Maryland. George Washington and Native Americans is his first book.

About GMU Press: The George Mason University Press supports the academic mission of George Mason University by publishing peer-reviewed, scholarly works of distinction, written by authors from a wide range of intellectual perspectives, for a diverse, worldwide readership. GMU Press publishes in a variety of disciplines with special focus on the history, politics, and culture of Northern Virginia and the wider District of Columbia metropolitan area, as well as other topics such as public policy, international affairs, and higher education.

GMU Press Book Launch: Peacebuilding through Dialogue

Join us for a conversation with Peter Stearns, University Professor and Provost Emeritus, and Susan Allen, Director of the Center for Peacemaking Practice, as they discuss Peacebuilding through Dialogue on Wednesday, March 20, at 3 p.m. in Fenwick 2001. Books will be available for purchase, and refreshments will be provided (courtesy of the University Bookstore).

Peacebuilding through Dialogue examines the many dimensions of dialogue as a key driver of peaceful personal and social change. While most people agree on the value of dialogue, few delve into its meaning or consider its full range. The essays collected here consider dialogue in the context of teaching and learning, personal and interpersonal growth, and in conflict resolution and other situations of great change. Through these three themes, contributors from a wide variety of perspectives consider the different forms dialogue takes, the goals of the various forms, and which forms have been most successful or most challenging. With its expansive approach, the book makes an original contribution to peace studies, civic studies, education studies, organizational studies, conflict resolution studies, and dignity studies.

Contributors: Susan H. Allen, George Mason University * Monisha Bajaj, University of San Francisco * Andrea Bartoli, Seton Hall University * Meenakshi Chhabra, Lesley University * Steven D. Cohen, Tufts University * Charles Gardner, Community of Sant’Egidio * Mark Farr, The Sustained Dialogue Institute * William Gaudelli, Teachers College, Columbia University * Jason Goulah, DePaul University * Donna Hicks, Harvard University * Bernice Lerner, Hebrew College * Ceasar L. McDowell, MIT * Gonzalo Obelleiro, DePaul University * Bradley Siegel, Teachers College, Columbia University * Olivier Urbain, Min-On Music Research Institute * Ion Vlad, University of San Francisco.

About GMU Press: The George Mason University Press supports the academic mission of George Mason University by publishing peer-reviewed, scholarly works of distinction, written by authors from a wide range of intellectual perspectives, for a diverse, worldwide readership. GMU Press publishes in a variety of disciplines with special focus on the history, politics, and culture of Northern Virginia and the wider District of Columbia metropolitan area, as well as other topics such as public policy, international affairs, and higher education.

Virginia Wine Book Launch: April 10

Join us as we launch George Mason University Press‘ new book: Virginia Wine: Four Centuries of Change.

No state can claim a longer history of experimenting with and promoting viticulture than Virginia—nor does any state’s history demonstrate a more astounding record of initial failure and ultimate success. Virginia Wine: Four Centuries of Change, a new book written by Andrew Painter and published by George Mason University Press, presents a comprehensive record of the Virginia wine industry, from the earliest Spanish accounts describing Native American vineyards in 1570 through its astonishing rebirth in the modern era. Grape cultivation—for agriculture, horticultural curiosity, and wine production—has absorbed ambitious Virginians since April 1607, when a few casks of European wine washed ashore onto the dunes of Cape Henry in the company of a band of travel-weary English settlers. The author chronicles the dynamic personalities, diverse places, and engrossing personal and political struggles that have established the Old Dominion as one of the nation’s preeminent wine regions. Virginia’s wine industry now accounts for nearly $1 billion in annual sales, with more than 275 wineries growing more than 30 varieties of grapes.

Join us to hear Andrew Painter discuss a multitude of wine industry trends, events, secondary industries, and jobs that have revolved around the growing of grapes and the making and promotion of wine. To that end, the book emphasizes the unique aspects of the wine industry’s role in Virginia’s history and culture—a history that continues to be made in an agricultural and industrial sector that is itself unique among world commerce and society. Refreshments courtesy of Mason Bookstore.

About the author: Andrew A. Painter is an attorney specializing in land use and zoning. A Virginia native, Andrew has spent more than eight years researching the growth of its wine industry. He is a graduate of the University of Mary Washington, the University of Virginia, and the University of Richmond.

For more information, contact John Warren, Director, George Mason University Press and Mason Publishing Group, gmupress@gmu.edu.