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UBC Reports | Vol. 49 | No. 7 | Jul. 3, 2003

What’s Popular at the UBC Bookstore

The top 10 UBC selling authors

1. Toxic Emotions at Work: How Compassionate Managers Handle Pain and Conflict

Peter Frost
Harvard Business School Press, 2003

A study of the causes and effects of emotional pain in organizations, and what can be done to alleviate pain before it becomes toxic.

Toxicity, the outcome of emotionally insensitive attitudes and actions of managers and of the practices of their companies, doesn’t simply ruffle a few feathers. Rather, it acts as a noxious substance, draining vitality from individuals and your entire organization, potentially causing everything from missed deadlines to a mass exodus of your key staff. […] Left unchecked, toxicity will seep into your organization’s performance and right down to your bottom line. Despite the pervasiveness of emotional toxins in organizations and their negative effects on people and on profits, no one will raise the
subject since, as most of us have experienced first-hand, the discussion of emotion and pain in work situations tends to be seen as “weak” or “soft,” leaving those who do see it-and help to resolve it-with their mouths shut and their heads down.

(Chapter 1, Emotional Pain in Organizations, page 13)
Reprinted with permission from the author.

Peter J. Frost is the Edgar F. Kaiser Professor of Organizational Behaviour at the Sauder School of Business at UBC.

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2. Encyclopedia of Literature in Canada

Edited by William H. New
University of Toronto Press, 2002

An extensive record of Canadian authors and literary achievements, and a thorough analysis of the defining themes and events in Canadian literature.

"The U Toronto historian Frank Underhill (1889-1971) used to say that Canada had no intellectual history. He meant by this that no great ideas had originated in Canada and that neither ideas nor intellectuals had played any significant role in Canadian public life. This apparent deficiency distinguished Canada both from Britain and France and from the United States, whose founding texts had become classic documents in the history of political thought. […] No one today would say Canada had no intellectual history. Two generations and more of professional historians, philosophers, literary critics, and political scientists, inspired in part by Underhill’s quest and his indictment, have explored and analyzed the record of what Canadians of an intellectual bent have thought in the past. It may be too much to say that a ‘tradition’ of Canadian thought has been uncovered, but much has been learned about how Canadians have adapted to and shaped their environment as sentient and thinking beings. In the process, and under the influence of study elsewhere, our understanding of what constitutes intellectual history has itself changed. Students of the subject are no longer so much concerned with “high” ideas and their origins as with thought and expression as forms of action in which all men and women engage, the record of which is referred to ever more commonly as varieties of “discourse.” Intellectual history in this mode -- the study of attitudes, beliefs, communication, and meaning, as well as of ideas as such -- shades imperceptibly into cultural history.

(Intellectual History entry, page 528)."

By Kenneth C. Dewar and reprinted with permission from the editor and University of Toronto Press.

William H. New is a University Killam Professor in the UBC English department.

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3. No Place to Learn: Why Universities Aren’t Working

Tom Pocklington / Allan Tupper
UBC Press, 2002

A challenging critique of the structure and functioning of modern Canadian universities.

“The idea that teaching is improved by interaction with research is a foundational concept in Canadian universities. Among other things, the mutual enrichment notion is used to distinguish universities from other educational institutions. As professors often declare, research universities differ from colleges and technical institutes in that they conduct research that inspires teaching. The idea of mutual enrichment is also employed to differentiate modern research universities from their predecessors. Research universities are depicted as vigorous places where cutting-edge research sustains and bolsters teaching. Great teachers are dynamic researchers whose classes come to life as they review their latest findings. The contrast is the dreary university of yesteryear where teaching was the dominant activity and where professors, who were not obliged to do research, transmitted established wisdom.

The theory of mutual enrichment performs important political functions in universities. It justifies the commitment of university resources to research. […] Finally, mutual enrichment is an aspect of professors’ drive for social status and influence. It is an idea that makes professors seem talented and multiskilled. […]

We argue that mutual enrichment does not reflect university reality. Teaching and research are generally in conflict with each other. The mutual enrichment thesis is an impediment to necessary university reform. Effective undergraduate teaching, which demands general knowledge, considerable energy, and reflective inquiry, is a very different activity from the preparation of specialized professorial research.”

(Chapter 6, Teaching and Research at Canadian Universities, pages 105-111).

Reprinted with permission from UBC Press.

Allan Tupper is the Associate VP, Government Relations at UBC.

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4. Book of Contradictions

George McWhirter
Oolichan Books, 2002

Book of poems.

"Which is it to be?
or meals.

What if the ideal
is a meal?

What shall we do then
with all the fresh ideas
in our new republic?"

(Whatever It Is You Must Eat It, page 19).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

George McWhirter teaches in the UBC Creative Writing program.

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5. Making Native Space: Colonialism, Resistance, and Reserves in British Columbia

Cole Harris
UBC Press, 2002

A comprehensive history of the Indian reserves in British Columbia.

“For 150 years a contested division of land between Natives and non-Natives has underlain the Canadian province of British Columbia. Everyone has a stake in it: Native people most directly because most of their land was taken away and they have had to make do with minimal remainders, the Indian reserves, but all others, too, because their lives here have been made out of the lands taken away. Recently, as a result of decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada, the treaty process in the province, the signing of the Nisga’a treaty, and, underlying them all, increasingly forceful Native voices, the Native land question is more to the fore than ever. Lawyers, consultants, and researchers gather around the issues involved. Protracted and expensive court cases generate mountainous collections of evidence and reports. The political temperature rises, not always overtly, because people are afraid to be thought racist, but to the point where throughout the province the Native land question is probably now more volatile than at any time since the 1870s."

(Chapter 10, Towards a Postcolonnial Land Policy, page 293).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Cole Harris is a Professor Emeritus in the UBC Department of Geography.

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6. (tie) Canada and the Idea of North

Sherrill E. Grace
McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2001

An extensive examination of the way Canadians have defined themselves as a northern people throughout their history and culture.

"The idea that Canada’s future is somehow linked to the North is […] hardly new. Depending upon where North is located and how it is determined, it has symbolized future hopes for purity, freedom, adventure, wealth, fame, and regional and national identity -- for Quebec rayonnement and for national unity -- as long as there has been a Canada. Just as there is always a personal politics of location, there is as well a national politics of location, and at the beginning of a new century that politics of northern location seems to hold challenges and promises beyond anything Haliburton or Stefansson or Diefenbaker could have imagined. Nunavut is one of those promising challenges, as is the writing back of the northern Cree or the land-claims agreements of the Inuvialuit and Nishga peoples."

(Epilogue, Magnetic North, page 267).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Sherrill E. Grace is a professor in the UBC English department.

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6. (tie) The Arbutus/Madrone Files: Reading the Pacific Northwest

Laurie Ricou
NeWest Press, 2002

An exciting look at 20th-century Pacific Northwest writing.

"Just sticking with the West Coast version of logging language, one can quickly come up with a vocabulary recorded in print sources of 9,000 to 10,000 terms. Logging jargon is a rich, revealing study in its own right: as with any other separate language, learning woodswords uncovers new understandings: that the ubiquitous donkey (engine) appears to have been named because the original was less than one horse-power, or that “gandy dancer,” the movement traced by a worker driving spikes into ties, may allude, however indirectly, to India. Moreover, it’s surprising to find that such an extensive dialect has developed in an economy where workers are separated by long distances. This language […] seems to be a bunkhouse language […], an afterwork language, a bull-shitting language. All of which should give it a great appeal to writers. On the West Coast, logging dialect seems to be the closest we have to an indigenous language in English."

(Afterfile: Woodswords, page 195).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Laurie R. Ricou is a professor of English at UBC.

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8. Academic Writing: Writing and Reading in the Disciplines, 3rd edition

Janet Giltrow
Broadview Press, 2002

A stimulating introduction to academic writing, with numerous examples and exercises.

“Scholarly style does exclude many readers. Even within the larger academic community, readers who are members of one discipline can be excluded from the ongoing discourses of other disciplines. While researchers seem to be generally respectful of those working in other fields, smirks and raised eyebrows are not unknown when a researcher comes within earshot of the wordings of another discipline. The “post-modernism” of the humanities and some of the social sciences can inspire ridicule amongst those who do not work in those terms. And, equally, the classifying vocabularies of the sciences and some other social sciences can arouse suspicion amongst those who work with less technical terminologies. […] any social group - skateboarders or pilots or childcare workers -- will develop and maintain speech styles which serve and represent the routines which organize their activities. And these styles will, to a greater or lesser degree, exclude people who don’t belong to the group and incur the risk of social reactions to that exclusion."

(Chapter 5, Scholarly Styles and the Limits of Knowledge, page 213).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Dr. Janet Giltrow is an Associate Professor in the UBC English department.

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9. Pawprints of History: Dogs and the Course of Human Events

Stanley Coren
Free Press, 2002

A history of the relationship between famous historical figures (from Saint Roche to Bill Clinton) and their dogs.

“It is difficult to know whether Freud simply had a predisposition to love dogs, or whether they fulfilled a need that could not be otherwise expressed in his life. This was an era of great formality; open and playful affection could only be expressed toward young children (and even then with some restraint) or to dogs. Judging from some of the home movies that we have, Freud loved playing and clowning with his dogs. They also helped him to deal with difficult moments in his life. For example, Freud hated birthdays, perhaps because they were a sign of his aging and mortality. However, Anna [Freud’s youngest daughter] managed to get him to celebrate them through the dogs. At each of his birthdays, the family would gather around the table, where there was a birthday cake. Each of the dogs […] were seated in chairs and they, as well as Sigmund himself, would all be wearing paper party hats. Hanging around the neck of one of the dogs would be an envelope containing a poem, which was composed by Anna but signed in the name of one of the dogs. Sigmund would always read the poem out loud, with great dramatic flourishes, then thank the dog in whose name it was signed and offer the dog the first slice of birthday cake."

(Chapter 10, The Dog on the Therapist’s Couch, page 137).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Stanley Coren is a Professor of Psychology at UBC.

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10. Failing Our Kids: How We Are Ruining Our Public Schools

Charles Ungerleider
McClelland & Stewart, 2003

A critical analysis of the Canadian public school system.

“Canadians might as well begin teaching their grandchildren how to sing the “Star-Spangled Banner” and pledge allegiance to the American flag if they continue treating Canada’s public schools the way they have been recently. Our public schools, and what they teach our children, help define Canada as a unique nation. But we are neglecting our public schools in a perversely malicious way: making impossible demands upon them, strangling them financially, creating trivial changes for the sake of ideology, avoiding necessary changes for lack of fortitude, saying their graduates don’t measure up, making fatuous comparisons between one public school and another, decrying their accomplishments, and just plain ignoring them. It’s true what they say, “You don’t know what you have till it’s gone.” Our public schools are collapsing from malign neglect."

(Chapter 1, You don’t know what you have till it’s gone, page 8).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Charles Ungerleider is a professor of Sociology of Education in the UBC Department of Educational Studies. He was the UBC Associate Dean for teacher education from 1993 to 1998.

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Last reviewed 22-Sep-2006

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