Roanoke College Professors, Retirees and Alums Release Recent Books

SALEM, Va. - Dr. Mary Henold, assistant professor of history at Roanoke College, recently published a new book titled Catholic and Feminist: The Surprising History of the American Catholic Feminist Movement. Her book explores that aspect of the feminist movement from the 1960s to the early 1980s and is published by University of North Carolina Press.

Henold reports that Catholic feminists had much in common with their sisters in the larger American feminist movement and that Catholic feminism grew within the church. She illustrates that efforts to reunite faith and feminism reveal both the complex nature of feminist consciousness and the creative potential of religious feminism. Henold's book was highlighted in the Oct. 3 issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education with a summary and picture of the book.

“When people read the book, I hope they will learn about a remarkable group of women who championed a social justice cause against enormous odds,” Henold said. “The book also shows how feminism can be rooted in a woman's faith, and that faith and feminism are not mutually exclusive.”

Dr. Gerald McDermott, faculty member of Roanoke College's religion and philosophy department, released The Baker Pocket Guide to World Religions: What Every Christian Needs to Know, published by Baker Books. His book provides short, easy-to-read guides that will help one grasp the central beliefs of the seven major world religions: Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism and Daoism, and Shinto. The guide includes personal testimonials from each religion, sketches of important religious leaders of our day, sidebars explaining details of rituals and traditions and a glossary of key terms. It also includes a chapter dedicated to understanding the impact world religions have on Christian evangelism.

Dr. Janice Saunders, a retired Roanoke College history professor, also released a new book titled Cricket's Child 1945-1955: How I Learned to Love the Bomb. The narrative explores how the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union changed the lives of ordinary Americans. It is a chronicle about how average people lived their lives, earned a living, suffered diseases and fundamentally thought during one of America's most pivotal decades. Other issues addressed in the book include the polio epidemic, religious repression, inequalities in gender, social class and race.

Saunders will sign the book at a special event at 7 p.m. on Thursday, November 13 at the Roanoke County library on Electric Road in Roanoke. She will give a short talk and sign books during a reception to follow.

Larry Arrington, a 1963 alumnus and retired Roanoke College educator, is writing a series of three books about the College. The first two were recently published by Outskirts Press, Inc. The first was The Dawn of a Sport: Roanoke College's Track and Field Athletics Program 1895-1930, which discusses Roanoke College's struggle to begin and sustain track and field and later eliminate the sport in 1930.

The second book in the series, The Bast Boys, tells the story of Homer Bast, a history professor, administrator, counselor and coach who retired after 33 years at Roanoke College and still lives in Salem. Bast loved cross country and track, and at Roanoke, he resurrected both sports, producing the most outstanding athletes in Virginia small-college history. Bast's athletes became the pride of the College and the envy of opponents. Arrington served as an admissions officer, a dean of men, a teacher and a coach of cross country and track and field - all at Roanoke College.

Thomas D. Mays, a 1990 Roanoke College alumnus and now professor at Humboldt State University in California, wrote Cumberland Blood: Champ Ferguson's Civil War and was published by Southern Illinois University Press in September. Mays' book explores the life of Champ Ferguson, one of the most brutal men in the Civil War. He committed various crimes during the war like using it as an excuse to steal, plunder and murder Union civilians and soldiers.

Roanoke College, an independent, co-educational, four-year liberal arts college in Salem, Virginia, combines firsthand learning with valuable personal connections in a classic, undergraduate setting. Roanoke prepares students for their futures through its commitment to providing a true classic college experience. Roanoke is one of just 276 colleges nationwide with a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation's oldest and most prestigious honor society. The Princeton Review names Roanoke as one of the "best in the Southeast."

For additional information, call the Roanoke College Public Relations Office at (540) 375-2282.

Released: October 29, 2008
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