Tulane Home   |  Calendar  |  Press Room  |  About  |  Contact

Educating undergraduate women for leadership in the 21st century.

<h2 class="nci-h2-featured">Staff Picks
Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterWatch NCI on You-TubeWatch NCI on VimeoLinked InFlickrpinterestinstagram

Hard Laughter - Anne Lamott
Lamott is a good writer to re-read now and then and especially so at holiday time. She has a great tolerance for the complexity of family life, a humor that is transcendent and readily accessible, and a good turn of phrase. This was her first novel and one that discusses parenthood from the perspective of twenty-year olds. (Staff Pick by Susan Tucker)



Dickens' women - Miriam Margolyes and Sonia Fraser

This is a delightful read, a book that accompanied the tour of actress Miriam Margolyes as she toured the world for the bicentenary of Dickens' birth. The book makes you remember your own memories of some of the women from the mind of Dickens, makes you laugh, makes you puzzle how one man could have taken so much from life and written it out on paper for all of us yet. (Staff Pick by Susan Tucker)



Quiet - Susan Cain 

This book is about how our society undervalues introverts, dismissing those who are quiet and thoughtful as having nothing worthwhile to contribute.  An important read for verbal people who overlook quiet people, and unfortunately, many educators are among those who believe that quiet people are simply not articulate and have nothing to offer. (Staff Pick by Jaelle Scheuerman)


That Used to be Us - Thomas Friedman and Michael Mandelbaum 

This book discusses (clearly, as only Friedman can) how/why the US has fallen behind in education, industry, research, leadership and other areas along with anecdotes of what some people and places are doing right.  (Staff Pick by Jan Mulvihill)



Boy Heaven - Laura Kasischke

Who knew high school cheerleading camp could be so creepy? (Staff pick by Laura Wolford)


The Cutting Season - Attica Locke

A murder mystery set on a Louisiana plantation that delves deep into issues of race and class. A smart page-turner! (Staff Pick by Laura Wolford)



State of Wonder - Ann Patchett

Really compelling story, with compelling questions about the ethics of biomedical research, public health, and anthropology. So gripping! (Staff pick by Laura Wolford)


Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void - Mary Roach

I have always daydreamed about what it would be like to go to Mars someday, but after reading this book I have a much greater appreciation for the astronauts who someday might.  It's both an enlightening and entertaining look into the many challenges of space travel, including recycled food, no access to hot showers, lack of privacy and more. (Staff Pick by Jaelle Scheuerman)



Blueprints for Building Better Girls - Elissa Schappell

A series of linked short stories about girls and women struggling with female identity and how it evolves. Features some very realistic college girls and new moms. (Staff pick by Laura Wolford)


Stone Arabia - Dana Spiotta

This books takes on issues of identity, self-presentation, art, narrative and self-creation, and music. A lot going on, in an elegant, compelling read. Highly recommended! (Staff Pick by Laura Wolford)


Unfamiliar Fishes - Sarah Vowell

I really like this book because Sarah Vowell does the impossible--she educates readers about little known facts about Hawaiian history and entertains us with her quirky observations about plate lunches! Turns out Obama is our first "plate lunch" President!! (Staff Pick by Bea Calvert)



The Warmth of Other Suns - Isabel Wilkerson

The story of the great migration of nearly six million  black Americans  from the south to the north and west, focusing on the life-long journeys of three separate families and their struggles to leave the Jim Crow south in pursuit of a better life. (Staff Pick by Jan Mulvihill)

Round House

Round House - Louise Erdrich

This book is a compelling story told from the point of view of a boy in the midst of becoming a young man on a reservation, dealing with the rape of his mother. Although Erdrich misses an opportunity to shine a light on the high rates of rape on tribal lands and the indifferent response from the authorities that might underscore the unfair tribal justice system, this is, in fact, a coming of age story that offers a fascinating glimpse of contemporary tribal life. (Staff Pick by Sally Kenney)


Homeward Bound: American Families in the Cold War Era - Elaine Tyler May

Though it is older, you cannot go wrong this book, as it is a cornerstone of popular cultural studies because of the unique way May examines everything from television shows of the era to civil defense manuals. Ever wonder where the term "bombshell" comes from to refer to women? May details the cultural conflation of women, sexuality, and the A-bomb. If you think the 1950s were all domestic tranquility, think again. (Staff Pick by Aidan Smith)


The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks - Rebecca Skloot

This book is by far one of the most interesting non-fiction “science” books that I have read. The HELA cells have become one of the best science miracles of the century, thanks to this poor woman that has been dead over fifty years. Such a very sad life for her and her family, but redemption and immortality for medicine. (Staff Pick by Gracibel Rickerfor)



Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman - Robert K. Massie

This book was a lengthy read, but fascinating. I was most taken with the depiction of the children of royals, bred for marriage and future leadership roles. Catherine was a fascinating woman, and the book brings not only her story, but the depiction of the era, to life. (Staff Pick by Marian-Herbert Bruno)



Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln - Doris Kearns Goodwin

This book is about what shaped Lincoln and his political rivals, Salmon Chase, William Seward and Edward Bates, and why he invited them to serve in his presidential cabinet. Goodwin is a great storyteller whose details make you feel like a true witness to history. (Staff Pick by Jan Mulvihill)



The Color of Violence: The INCITE! Anthology

This text opens with the question "What would it take to end violence against women of color?". If you're someone who's interested in answering that question yourself and learning from others whose work and activism is solving this global problem I highly recommend this book. (Staff Pick by Kaitlin Splett)



Fun Home: A Tragicomic - Alison Bechdel

This book is an excellent choice for leisure reading. The visual elements, including drawings of the author, her family, and maps of their home, tell a story as compelling as the narrative presented in the text. For those who may have seen her presentation on campus last month, I strongly encourage you to read this book, or revisit it if you have read it before. Her discussion of her method sheds new light on the work. (Staff Pick by Bea Calvert)



Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead - Sheryl Sandberg

Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg seeks to get readers thinking about the issues faced by women in leadership positions.  She shares her experiences working as the VP for Global Online Operations at Google and as the COO as Facebook, including challenges she and her colleagues have faced in their careers. The book is aimed primarily at women with leadership ambitions, but also offers helpful advice and encouragement to those who have never considered it. (Staff Pick by Jaelle Scheuerman)


The House Girl

The House Girl - Tara Conklin

The House Girl, the historical fiction debut by Tara Conklin, is an unforgettable story of love, history, and a search for justice, set in modern-day New York and 1852 Virginia. Weaving together the story of an escaped slave in the pre-Civil War South and a determined junior lawyer, The House Girl follows Lina Sparrow as she looks for an appropriate lead plaintiff in a lawsuit seeking compensation for families of slaves. In her research, she learns about Lu Anne Bell, a renowned prewar artist whose famous works might have actually been painted by her slave, Josephine. (Staff Pick by Gracibel Rickerfor)

Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000