I had the pleasure to interview seven Ann Arbor authors about their latest books. Each one of them, in their own way, emphasized the lesson that we must learn to be collaborative, cooperative, and resilient. Without the ability to communicate, empathize and negotiate with others, we cannot function in our complex, interconnected world.
Irene Butter has shared with us in her deeply moving book, “Shores Beyond Shores”, how her family was not only able to survive in concentration camps during World War II, but also how she has been able to build an illustrious career as an immigrant to the USA.
Ken Fischer, in his memoir, says it all in the title: “Everybody in Nobody Out”. It is a thoroughly enjoyable and instructional book about how he and his team were able to achieve miraculous success with the University Musical Society. The success culminated in receiving the Presidential Medal of Honor from President Obama.
John Baldoni, an author of over a dozen books, has captured the spirit of what it means to be a cooperative human being in his newest book, “Grace”.
Naomi Andre in her book, “Black Opera”, awakens us to the way that African American music has enriched us in the USA, not only through popular music, but also through opera. Our music is like the sun shining on our trees, and American music would not be what it is without the influence of African Americans throughout our long and tumultuous history. You only have to listen to the soundtrack from Hamilton to understand the powerful influence of African Americans on opera in our country. For my granddaughters, Hamilton, of which they have memorized most of the words, is their first introduction to black opera.
Baseball, my favorite sport, is a sublime game of cooperation between nine players. It is also a wonderful manifestation of our culture, which now mixes and stars people from all over North and South America. David Siglin in his new book, “Baseball’s Best: Comparing Over 1000 Players In Their Primes, 1893-2019”, identifies the best players during their prime years. Who would you guess would be the top hitter and the top pitcher during the last 50 years? You will have to read David’s book or ask him directly for the answer.
Ari Weinzweig, of Zingerman’s fame, identifies a core characteristic of how to succeed in a collaborative society in his latest book/pamphlet, “Humility; A Humble, Anarchist Inquiry”. Zingerman’s has been unique at creating a culture built on collaboration and service.
Dale Fisher gives us a thrilling book which visually illustrates a point I’m trying to make about how we are all connected. He has been taking photos from helicopters for over 50 years. His latest book, “Washtenaw County: Visions of the Eagle”, gives us a visual representation of how the world looks from above.
You can also find many of these books through Amazon.com.