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New Books by Swarthmoreans


Arthur Gelb and Barbara Stone Gelb ’46
By Women Possessed
Marian Wood Books/Putnam

The story behind the Gelbs’ third and final volume on Nobel laureate and four-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Eugene O’Neill is poignant: Arthur died during their final revisions, leaving Barbara to complete the trilogy. Drawing on hitherto secret letters and diaries, the Gelbs illuminate the most lauded—and tragic—years of O’Neill’s life and the women who shaped him and his art. “Brilliantly weaving these lives into the story, the Gelbs have penned a history of our modern theater as well as a penetrating search for psychological truth,” their publisher writes.


Andrea Bear Rugh ’57
Christians in Egypt
Palgrave Macmillan

Rugh began this book decades ago, inspired by her in-depth study of Egyptian Christians living in Cairo’s poverty-stricken Bulaq Abu Alaa quarter and the considerable challenges she witnessed firsthand faced by social welfare workers. “Since independence in 1952 and up to and beyond the Uprising of 2011,” she finds, “Christians experienced high and low points often depending on the quality of the relationship between leaders of the church and the heads of the Egyptian government.”


Timothy Stewart-Winter ’01
Queer Clout
University of Pennsylvania Press

“The story of gay empowerment in Chicago was in many ways more representative [than in San Francisco or New York] of the dozens of other regional magnets for gay migration—from Atlanta to Seattle, Boston to Dallas,” Stewart-Winter writes in his first book. Tracing how the LGBTQ community achieved political power by allying with other urban residents who dealt with police harassment, especially African-Americans, “Queer Clout weaves together the histories of a social movement and electoral politics in the nation’s great inland metropolis.”


F. Harlan Flint ’52
Journey to a Straw Bale House
Sunstone Press

Building a home is so much more than an act of creativity or construction—in many ways, it reflects who, where, and what we are. For Flint, erecting a cabin in the northern New Mexico wilderness with the aid of a descendant of the area’s original pioneers marked the culmination of a colorful “life ramble” that helped him better understand Hispano culture, the American character, and himself. “This is in part a story about building a house,” says Flint. “It is also about a lifetime leading up to that project.”