General-Interest Books by Alumni and Faculty Authors
First Landing: The “Stop the Bombing” Occupation of Kaho’olawe Island
By Stephen Kane-A-’I Morse’68
First Landing offers a first-person account of Morse’s involvement in protests against the U.S. Navy’s use of the Hawaiian island of Kaho’olawe as a bombing target. In 1976, Morse joined eight other Hawaiian citizens to protest the mistreatment of the island, which began in 1953. Morse’s narrative dives into the experience of the group during the first occupation of the 44 square-mile island, an act that ignited more occupations and a movement by Hawaiian people to reclaim and restore their culture and ancestral lands.
While Morse focuses on the protest, he also weaves in stories about injustices against Hawaii and its native people since the Hawaiian Nation was overthrown in 1893, as well as maps of the island and photographs of those involved in the “Stop the Bombing” occupation.
That first occupation may not have lasted long, but it brought lasting attention to the issue. The U.S. government released Kaho’olawe to the people of Hawaii in 1992, and the bombing ceased immediately, 16 years after the first landing. Morse himself says “too much has been made of our first occupation,” believing instead that those who were members of the Protect Kaho’olawe Ohana were the true heroes, as they spent more than two decades working through legal and bureaucratic systems to finally free the island of military occupation. Yet, the impact of what came to be known as the Kaho’olawe Nine is still of great importance to modern Hawaiian history.
You Can Succeed at Protecting Your Legacy
By Martin Morse Wooster’80
Martin Morse Wooster’s book examines the problem of preserving donor intent by following the money in profiles of some of the richest Americans (think Rockefeller, Pew, Carnegie). These entrepreneurs and champions of free enterprise were wildly successful in business, but Wooster argues that their intentions for giving their money away often were ignored once their vast wealth transferred to perpetual foundations. This is the fourth edition of Wooster’s book, which is fully titled How Great Philanthropists Failed and You Can Succeed at Protecting Your Legacy. Wooster is a senior fellow at the Capital Research Center in Washington, D.C.
Price of Duty
By Todd Strasser’74
Price of Duty protagonist Jake Liddell returns home from war, a wounded soldier. Though he is lauded as a hero, he is conflicted now that he’s seen the real cost of war firsthand. Raised in a military family, he begins to question everything he once believed, including that fighting for one’s country is a moral obligation. In this book for young readers, Strasser, an award-winning author of books for adults, young adults, and middle grade readers, grapples with a challenging subject. “Jake faces the decision of returning to duty or getting an early discharge due to injury, and although readers may be divided on his final choice, they will respect the ethical struggle that led him there,” writes Elizabeth Bush in the Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books.
SEED: The Untold Story
A documentary film by Taggart Siegel’81 and Jon Betz
Taggart Siegel is the co-director/producer of SEED: The Untold Story, a documentary film that explores the importance of heirloom seeds, which are becoming ever more rare as agribusiness expands and promotes using only a handful of seed varieties. The film’s hypnotically beautiful scenes of abundance and diversity in plants and seeds also introduces a number of passionate seed collectors and activists for seed diversity, including Vandana Shiva, Beloit’s 2013-14 Weissberg Chair in International Studies. SEED debuted in the United States in 2016 (and has tallied 18 film festival awards since then), but the film is still being released in some markets abroad, including Germany, Austria, and Switzerland this October. Siegel is the founder and executive director of Collective Eye Films, a non-profit media production and distribution organization based in Portland, Ore.