What We Are Reading Today: Jeanine Basinger

Updated 18 November 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Jeanine Basinger

Author: Jeanine Basinger

Irresistible and authoritative, The Movie Musical! is an in-depth look at the singing, dancing, happy-making world of Hollywood musicals, beautifully illustrated in color and black and white.
“This is an essential text for anyone who’s ever laughed, cried, or sung along at the movies,” said a review in goodreads.com.
“This is an extensive, hugely in-depth exploration of the Hollywood movie musical spanning from its iterations at the birth of the sound era to the decades that many people saw it’s death, low-level popularity and then eventually, re-birth in the 20th century,” the review added.
Author Jeanine Basinger has appeared in several movie-related documentaries and completed audio commentaries about a dozen classic films.
She is a film historian, professor of Film Studies at Wesleyan University and curator and founder of The Cinema Archives at Wesleyan University. In addition, she is a trustee emeritus of the American Film Institute anda member of the steering committee of the National Center for Film and Video Preservation.

 


What We Are Reading Today: Crossing the Pomerium by Michael Koortbojian

Updated 23 January 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Crossing the Pomerium by Michael Koortbojian

The ancient Romans famously distinguished between civic life in Rome and military matters outside the city — a division marked by the pomerium, an abstract religious and legal boundary that was central to the myth of the city’s foundation. 

Michael Koortbojian explores how the Romans used social practices and public monuments to assert their capital’s distinction from its growing empire, to delimit the proper realms of religion and law from those of war and conquest, and to establish and disseminate so many fundamental Roman institutions across three centuries of imperial rule. Crossing the Pomerium probes such topics as the appearance in the city of Romans in armor, whether in representation or in life, the role of religious rites on the battlefield, and the military image of Constantine on the arch built in his name. 

The book reveals how, in these instances and others, the ancient ideology of crossing the pomerium reflects the efforts of Romans not only to live up to the ideals they had inherited, but also to reconceive their past and to validate contemporary practices during a time when Rome enjoyed growing dominance in the Mediterranean world.