Alumni Services

May 2014

This month's publications include two works relating to the field of law, a look at the more sinister side of the old Hollywood film system, and the published score of an alumnus's opera.

Kieron Connolly

Author Kieron Connolly
Edinburgh degree History 1995
Book Dark Side of Hollywood

In the century since it produced its first feature film, Hollywood has presented itself as the glamorous home to the beautiful and talented. But, since its very creation, there has been a dark side to Tinseltown. Right from the beginning the Dream Factory created a hothouse of excess - too much money, too much adulation, too much expectation and too much ego. Some actors would trade sex in the, often vain, hope of career advancement, mobsters muscled in on the unions and extorted the studios, whose heads kept suspiciously close ties to the police and the Press.

Meanwhile, it’s Tinseltown’s accountants who appear to be among Hollywood’s most creative people, managing to ensure that even the Star Wars films don’t show a profit. From the setting up of the studios by the movie moguls to the corporations that run them today, from drug addictions to McCarthy-era witch-hunts and on to the Mob, Dark History of Hollywood is the story of sex, murder and suicide, ambition and betrayal, and how money can make almost everyone compromise.

Stuart J T Dodds

Author Stuart J T Dodds
Edinburgh degree Modern History & Politics 1991
Book Smarter Pricing, Smarter Profit’

Smarter Pricing, Smarter Profit provides an easy to read road map to guide the reader through the steps to improve their existing law firm pricing and legal project management, as well as overall profit contribution, in this fast changing legal environment, The book addresses the full commercial spectrum of winning an engagement through to its successful completion - from the initial setting of price, to client negotiation to delivery of services and review of performance. This one of a kind resource is centred around a ‘Set-Get-Manage-Review’ framework, providing a comprehensive, structured, and clear approach to addressing the increasingly complex pricing and delivery challenges faced within legal services today.

David Szablowski

Author David Szablowski
Edinburgh degree English Literature 1989
Book Transnational Law and Local Struggles - Mining, Communities, and the World Bank

The global spread of transnational mining investment, which has been taking place since the 1990s, has led to often volatile conflicts with local communities. This book examines the regulation of these conflicts through national, transnational and local legal processes. In doing so, it examines how legal authority is being redistributed among public and private actors, as well as national and transnational actors, as a result of globalizing forces.

The book presents a case study concerning the negotiation of land transfer and resettlement between a transnational mining enterprise and indigenous peasants in the Andes of Peru. The case study is used to explore the intensely local dynamics involved in negotiations between corporate and community representatives and the role played by legal ordering in these relations. In particular, the book examines the operation of a transnational legal regime managed by the World Bank to remedy the social and environmental impacts of projects which receive Bank assistance. The book explores the nature and character of the World Bank regime and the multiple consequences of this projection of transnational law into a local dispute.

Julian Wagstaff

Author Julian Wagstaff
Edinburgh degree Music 2002, PhD 2008
Book Breathe Freely - chamber opera in two short acts

Libretto and piano/vocal score of the chamber opera Breathe Freely by Scottish composer Julian Wagstaff. Set during the Second World War, this opera was premiered in 2013 in a production supported by Scottish Opera.