Cafe Choice: creative work by Notre Dame people


Author: Carol Schaal '91M.A.

The Kings of Tharsis: Medieval and Renaissance Music for Epiphany, Schola Antiqua of Chicago, Michael Alan Anderson ’97, director. (Discantus Recordings). The ensemble performs songs ranging from plainchants to six-voice motets, chiefly by 16th century composers, all celebrating the feast of Epiphany. The album features music that previously had not received a modern recording. Full texts, translations and previews of the songs on this 10-track CD can be found at

Pray for Rain, Mutts (Mutts Music). This first full-length album by the rock ’n’ roll band with attitude, with lyrics by Mike Maimone ’04, is dedicated to “the protesters on Wall St. who have inspired people of all races, faiths & political affiliations to unite.” The trio of Maimone, keyboard/vocals; Bob Buckstaff, bass; and Chris Faller, drums, is described by Time Out Chicago as “Like Tom Waits fronting a garage band.” Songs from the 11-track album can be downloaded at

God Bless America, University of Notre Dame Band, directed by Dr. Kenneth Dye. This celebration of the band’s 166th year and 124th football season is available both as a CD and a DVD. Among the highlights from its 2011 season are the band’s halftime show with the music group Chicago and its performance on the front lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building. Along with popular hits performed by the group, traditional school songs are also included. The CD and the DVD can be ordered at

Discover Christ: Developing a Personal Relationship with Jesus, Bert Ghezzi ’69Ph.D. and Dave Nodar (Our Sunday Visitor). “What is the meaning of life?” “Why does Jesus matter?” “Why is the Resurrection important to us?” Through personal stories, scripture and testimonies, the authors guide readers through a series of pivotal questions that invite them to embrace the answer found in the New Testament. They conclude with a look at “Community and Sacraments: Why We Need the Church.”

Windfall Nights, William Claypool ’72 (iUniverse). A novel of redemption, the story follows Julian, a fifth-year college senior, and Thomas, a handyman Julian meets at his part-time job as a night bellman at a second-rate hotel. The two men later go their separate ways, but each arrives in Saigon at the height of the Vietnam War, where Julian is pursuing his career as a journalist and Thomas is following his destiny.

Here Lies Hugh Glass: A Mountain Man, A Bear, and the Rise of the American Nation, Jon T. Coleman (Hill and Wang). In 1823, trapper Hugh Glass was nearly killed by a grizzly bear, and two members of his company eventually abandoned the dying man. Glass then crawled 200 miles to safety and sought revenge on those two men. Coleman, a ND associate professor of history, here looks at the myth that grew around this frontier man and discusses how such tales of Western survival contributed to building the idea of American exceptionalism.

The Harrisburg 7 and the New Catholic Left, William O’Rourke (University of Notre Dame Press). The religious antiwar protests of the Vietnam War era form the background of this reprint, which brings to life the 1972 trial of seven anti-war activists who were accused of conspiring to raid federal offices, bomb federal property and kidnap presidential adviser Henry Kissinger. The 40th anniversary edition features a new afterword by the author, a ND professor of English, that includes a history of the new Catholic Left for the past four decades.

Attack of the Theocrats: How the Religious Right Harms Us All — and What We Can Do About It, Sean Faircloth ’82 (Pitchstone Publishers). This country’s founding principle of the separation of church and state is at risk, the author writes, as “our present descent toward theocracy and the privileging of religion in law unjustly harms us in multiple ways.” He discusses how religious bias can, for example, hurt our children, since religious child-care centers in some states are exempt from safety regulations. He ends with “a patriotic plan to reclaim America.”

Contested Illnesses: Citizens, Science, and Health Social Movements, edited by Phil Brown, Rachel Morello-Frosch, Stephen Zavestoski ’94, and the Contested Illnesses Research Group (University of California Press). Health social movements are at the forefront of promoting social and policy changes to address such factors as environment and ecological health. Here essayists examine such issues as “Air toxics exposures and health risks among schoolchildren in Los Angeles”; “Women’s experience of household chemical exposure”; and “The public paradigm of the environmental breast cancer movement.”

Undisputed: Notre Dame, National Champions 1966, Mark O. Hubbard ’72 (Vantage Press). Avid football fans still debate Coach Ara Parseghian’s decision to kick a field goal rather than go for a winning touchdown in the Nov. 19, 1966, 10-10 tie game between ND and Michigan State — which played to a TV audience of 33 million, at the time the largest TV sports audience ever. The author here covers the players, coaches and the details of that famous game and the winning 1966 season, which resulted in a national championship for the Notre Dame football team.

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God’s Icebreaker: The Life and Adventures of Father Ted Hesburgh of Notre Dame, Jill A. Boughton and Julie Walters (Corby Books). Written especially for young readers, this biography of Father Ted, who served as president of Notre Dame from 1952 to ’87, tells stories of the priest who dedicated his life to the Catholic Church, higher education, civil rights and world peace. A timeline and a series of black-and-white pictures round out the text.

Beat Yesterday: A Business Novel, Dan Coughlin ’85 (BookBaby). How does a business sustain success over the long term? The author, an executive coach, focuses on how an individual’s behavior impacts short-term and long-term results. Its practical insights are part of a fictional story of two men struggling to stay true to their purpose at work. The business novel is available in two e-book formats — one for Kindle and the other for iPad, Nook, Sony Reader and other devices.

Blind Spot: War and Christian Identity, Dorothy Garrity Ranaghan ’66M.A. (New City Press). A founding member of People of Praise, a charismatic, ecumenical Christian covenant community, the author here discusses the complex subject of war and violence. Stanley Hauerwas, professor of theological ethics at the Divinity School of Duke University, writes, “Dorothy Ranaghan helps us see the difference the Holy Spirit can make for how we as a Church can be an alternative to war.”

Litigation and Prevention of Insurer Bad Faith, 3d, Dennis J. Wall ’73 (West Publishing). This two-volume resource explains the rules of insurance bad faith law and offers examples of state and federal complaints and answers as well as bad faith law developments from every U.S. jurisdiction. It also includes sample correspondence between the insured, insurer and counsel and a look at future expectations about bad faith law.

Cicero’s Practical Philosophy, edited by Walter Nicgorski (University of Notre Dame Press). The nine contributors’ essays here focus on a discussion of the key moral virtues that shaped Cicero’s ethics, as well as on many of his primary writings. It features Nicgorski’s seminal essay, “Cicero and the Rebirth of Political Philosophy.” The editor is a professor in Notre Dame’s program of liberal studies and a concurrent professor of political science.

Law, Person and Community: Philosophical, Theological, and Comparative Perspectives on Canon Law, John J. Coughlin, OFM (Oxford University Press). Father Coughlin, a Notre Dame law professor, probes the relationship between canon law, theology and natural law. He addresses how canon law relates to current issues in legal theory, including the right of religious freedom for individuals and communities.

European Transformations: The Long Twelfth Century, edited by Thomas F.X. Noble and John Van Engen (University of Notre Dame Press). Part of the Notre Dame Conferences in Medieval Studies series, this collection showcases essays by 19 medievalists. The contributors address such topics as feudalism, women’s roles in medieval society, and Jewish and Muslim communities, with a look at England and France, Scandinavia, Iberia and Eastern Europe. The editors are both history professors at Notre Dame.

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