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The Cloud of Unknowing (Middle English: The Cloude of Unknowyng) is an anonymous work of Christian mysticism written in Middle English in the latter half of the 14th century. The text is a spiritual guide on contemplative prayer in the late Middle Ages. The book counsels a young student to seek God, not through knowledge and intellection (faculty of the human mind), but through intense contemplation, motivated by love, and stripped of all thought. This is brought about by putting all thought ...
 
A thrilling intergalactic adventure, Star Surgeon follows the journey of Dal Timgar as he strives to achieve his lifelong goal of becoming a physician. Published in 1959, the novel explores themes of discrimination, prejudice, and racial oppression, while also presenting key elements of science fiction including interplanetary travel, intergalactic medicine, aliens, and advanced technology. The thrilling tale begins with the introduction of Dal Timgar, a young alien from Garv, who has aspire ...
 
This collection recognizes Black History Month, February 2007. Two excellent resources for public domain African American writing are African American Writers (Bookshelf) and The Book of American Negro Poetry, edited by James Weldon Johnson. Johnson’s collection inspired the Harlem Renaissance generation to establish a firm African-American literary tradition in the United States.
 
If you've heard and loved that delightful nursery rhyme/lullaby, Wynken Blynken and Nod you'd certainly enjoy browsing through its creator Eugene Field's Love Songs of Childhood. The volume contains some forty or more poems for children, which are ideal for read aloud sessions with young folks. Parents will certainly enjoy reading them too. Most of these poems have been set to music and are ideal for family sing-alongs too. Eugene Field was a gifted humorist as well as being a talented child ...
 
“China Now” is a live daily show on China Radio International (CRI). Launched in December 2006, the show aims to showcase the real China to the world, by reporting on Chinese society and culture. Previously known as “Beyond Beijing”, which has now become the name of the whole frequency, “China Now” was the first show CRI launched via its overseas FM stations. China Now is broadcast live between 2-5 pm Beijing Time, Monday to Friday. Each edition contains more than ten segments, including A D ...
 
All of us have our own favorite parts of a book which we love to read and re-read. The nicest part of this is that each time you read, you find something new to savor and remember. For those of us who haven't read some of the classics, a teaser in the form of a single chapter would probably be intriguing enough to want us to take up the book and start reading. Favorite Chapters Collection 001 is one such delicious tasting table! Ten chapters from some of the best known classics in English ar ...
 
“He was born with a gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad!” The wonderful opening lines of this 1921 novel set the tone for the rest of this delightful story of an adventurer and romantic who dons several roles in his colorful life. Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini is an historical novel set in the turbulent times of the French Revolution. The plot describes Andre-Louis Moreau, a young lawyer adopted by his godfather who cannot reveal his parentage. Moreau inadvertently stumbles ...
 
He is a divinely handsome young man, valiant and fiercely loyal to his uncle who adopted and nurtured him from the time he was an abandoned orphan. She is the ethereally beautiful princess of a faraway country, betrothed to the middle-aged uncle. They meet when the young man is sent as an emissary to her country to bring her back for the grand wedding. On board the ship, the two fall tragically in love. Tristan and Iseult by Joseph Bedier is a retelling of an ancient legend which has been po ...
 
Known as the Canadian Mark Twain, Stephen Leacock was a humorist whose gentle parodies and spoofs still evoke a smile and a chuckle more than a hundred years after they were first published. Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town was published in 1912. Set in the fictional town of Mariposa in Canada, which is peopled by a delightful assortment of characters, the book has proved to be an enduring classic in the humor genre. Readers around the world continue to enjoy these little stories about the ...
 
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Today on New Books in History, Mark A. Waddell, Associate professor of History, Philosophy & Sociology of Science in the Department of History at Michigan State University in beautiful East Lansing Michigan, talks about his recent book, Magic, Science, and Religion in Early Modern Europe (Cambridge University Press, 2021). From the recovery of anci…
 
Churches have long sought the arts as a vehicle to communicate divine transcendence and to form worshipers. In Glimpses of the New Creation: Worship and the Formative Power of the Arts (Eerdmans, 2019), W. David O. Taylor brings much needed clarity into conversations around the role of arts in Christian liturgy. After framing the way our theologica…
 
Transpacific Correspondences: Dispatches from Japan’s Black Studies, an essay collection edited by Dr. Yuichiro Onishi and Dr Fumiko Sakashita, introduces a little-known, but critical history of Black Studies in Japan. Taking the Black Studies Association (Kokujin Kenkyu no Kai) as its focus, the collection charts the history of members of the Blac…
 
The Death of Asylum: Hidden Geographies of the Enforcement Archipelago (University of Minnesota Press, 2020) arrives at an extraordinarily consequential moment for the future of asylum protections. Even as more and more people around the world find themselves displaced and endangered by violent conflict, climate change, and material deprivation, th…
 
In his much anticipated and equally brilliant book Transformations of Tradition: Islamic Law in Colonial Modernity (Oxford UP, 2021), Junaid Quadri explores the productive tensions, fissures, and creative interpretive projects enabled by the drive to defend Muslim traditionalism under the looming shadows of colonial modernity. By focusing on the th…
 
We conclude the discussion with NYU President Emeritus John Sexton by discussing key points from his book, “Standing for Reason: Universities in a Dogmatic Age,” where he describes the pivotal role of universities in creating a “Second Axial Age.” He also reflects on the leadership lessons from his successful tenure as NYU Law School Dean and Presi…
 
The Last Platoon: A Novel of the Afghanistan War (Bombardier Books, 2020) is a riveting book of infantry ground combat. As a work of fiction it is superb, showing the personal drama, drives and experiences of regular Marines combined with the high ambitions and political maneuverings of the highest ranks, including the President and Secretary of De…
 
Writer and translator Edgar Garbelotto speaks to managing editor Emily Everett about his short story “A Fourteen-Hour Lesson in Theosophy,” which appears in Issue 20 of The Common magazine. The story imagines the final hours of author Clarice Lispector’s life. In this conversation, Garbelotto talks about the process of fictionalizing a real person,…
 
During the Cold War, cultural diplomacy was one way that the governments of the United States and the Soviet Union tried to cultivate goodwill towards their countries. As Anne Searcy explains in her book, Ballet in the Cold War: A Soviet-American Exchange (Oxford University Press, 2020), dance was part of this effort. She focuses on two tours of th…
 
Emile Bojesen's book Forms of Education: Rethinking Educational Experience Against and Outside the Humanist Legacy (Routledge, 2019) analyses the tenets of the humanist legacy in terms of its educational ethos, examining its contradictions and its limits, as well as the extent of its capture of educational thought. It develops a broader conception …
 
Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations is one of the most popular philosophical works by sales to the public, while in academic philosophy he is considered somewhat of a philosophical lightweight. In Marcus Aurelius (Routledge, 2020), John Sellars argues that this academic perception mistakes the Meditations as a failed work of theoretical argument, when ins…
 
The American Revolution has traditionally been presented as one of the thirteen colonies standing up to a tyrannical empire. Not only does this gloss over the involvement of the thousands of American colonists who remained loyal to the British crown, but it also leaves out the response of the colonies who were also affected by British policies yet …
 
The American Revolution has traditionally been presented as one of the thirteen colonies standing up to a tyrannical empire. Not only does this gloss over the involvement of the thousands of American colonists who remained loyal to the British crown, but it also leaves out the response of the colonies who were also affected by British policies yet …
 
Since President Nixon coined the phrase, the "War on Drugs" has presented an important change in how people view and discuss criminal justice practices and drug laws. The term evokes images of militarization, punishment, and violence, as well as combat and the potential for victory. It is no surprise then that questions such as whether the "War on …
 
Don Isaac Abravanel (1437–1508) was an important forerunner of Jewish modernity. A merchant, banker, and court financier; a scholar versed in both Jewish and Christian writings; a preacher and exegete; and a prominent political actor in royal entourages and Jewish communities; Abravanel was one of the greatest leaders and thinkers of Iberian Jewry …
 
Imagine a rodeo rider atop a bucking bronco, hat in hand, straining to remain astride. Is the rider in your mind's eye white? Is the person male? Popular imaginings and high level, televised, professional rodeo circuits have created a stereotyped image of who rodeo is by and for, but it is far too limited an image, and one that does not reflect rea…
 
In My Private Lennon: Explorations From a Fan Who Never Screamed (Mad Creek Press, 2020), Sibbie O'Sullivan offers a new point of view from which to consider the Beatles’ impact on society and on the individual. In a series of linked autobiographical essays that explore the musical, cultural, and personal aspects of intense music fandom, Sibbie O’S…
 
The choices that churches make about their musical style do more than simply change the sounds one hears in their gatherings, but actually form certain kinds of community. So Monique M. Ingalls, Associate Professor of Music at Baylor University, argues in her book Singing the Congregation: How Contemporary Worship Music Forms Evangelical Community …
 
In 1800, the Shogun’s chief minister wrote the following about the city of Edo: "Someone said that if Edo did not have frequent fires, then people would be more showy and flash. In the capital or in Osaka they do everything with lavish elegance: people hang up paintings in their homes or put out arrangements of flowers. But in Edo, even in the affl…
 
The field of US foreign-relations history is not what it used to be, and that’s a good thing. Earlier historians narrowly defined the field as diplomatic history­­ and kept vast swathes of the United States’ interactions with the world from being explored. In the middle of the 1990s, for example, even the very consideration of gender in the history…
 
Today I talked to Adam Bryant about his new book (co-authored with Kevin Sharer), The CEO Test: Master the Challenges That Make or Break All Leaders (Harvard Business Press, 2021). Adam Bryant is managing director of Merryck & Co, a leadership development and mentoring firm. Before then, Adam was a journalist for 30 years, including at the New York…
 
The Community Relations Service (CRS) came into being alongside the Voting Rights Act—as part of the Act itself. And this organization was integrated into the Voting Rights Act in 1964 because President Lyndon Johnson wanted it to be included in that landmark legislation, in part because Johnson, as an adept politician and negotiator, saw the impor…
 
NYU President Emeritus John Sexton provides a detailed history of the evolution of NYU into the world’s first, global network university. This began with the recognition that New York itself was home to immigrants and neighborhoods representing most of the world’s cultures. Version 2.0 involved foreign-language focused study away sites in Generalis…
 
Empire of Convicts: Indian Penal Labor in Colonial Southeast Asia (University of California Press, 2021) (University of California Press, 2021) focuses on male and female Indians incarcerated in Southeast Asia for criminal and political offenses committed in colonial South Asia. From the seventeenth century onward, penal transportation was a key st…
 
For the next five weeks, SSEAC Stories will be hosting a mini-series of podcasts on research partnerships in Southeast Asia. In the context of COVID-19, it has become clear that working in partnership is a critical part of being able to do research in Southeast Asia. Through interviews with University of Sydney academics working across all discipli…
 
Welcome to The Academic Life. You are smart and capable, but you aren’t an island, and neither are we. So we reached across our mentor network to bring you podcasts on everything from how to finish that project, to how to take care of your beautiful mind. Wish we’d bring in an expert about something? Email us at cgessler@gmail.com or dr.danamalone@…
 
The election of Barack Obama propelled the idea of a post-racial United States, or that the country had moved beyond race as a defining feature of social difference and beyond racism as an everyday reality. Dr. Danielle Fuentes Morgan examines the ways in which African American comedians and cultural producers took aim at such claims through the le…
 
At the end of its life, the phoenix bursts into flames and a younger bird rises from the ashes. The roc is large enough to carry an elephant in its claws. The caladrius absorbs disease, curing the ill. The rain heron, which can take the form of steam, liquid or ice, controls the climate around it. Unlike the first three mythical birds, whose legend…
 
Consumption and the Literary Cookbook, edited by Roxanne Harde and Janet Wesselius (published 2021 by Routledge) examines the ways in which recipe authors and readers engage with one another through reading, cooking and eating the foods contained within the pages of Literary Cookbooks. The editors define literary cookbooks as novels and memoirs tha…
 
Dina Hassan (Lecturer, Modern Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics, University of Oklahoma, USA) speaks with Nicola Pratt (Associate Professor, International Politics of the Middle East, University of Warwick, UK) about Pratt’s recent book, Embodying Geopolitics: Generations of Women’s Activism in Egypt, Jordan, and Lebanon (University of Califo…
 
Starting in the latter part of the 20th century, the law of sexual offenses, especially in the West, began to reflect a striking divergence. On the one hand, the law became significantly more punitive in its approach to sexual conduct that is nonconsensual, as evidenced by a major expansion in the definition of rape and sexual assault, and the crea…
 
When journalist Rory Kress met Izzie, she didn’t think twice before bringing her home. She found the twelve-week-old wheaten terrier in a pet shop and was handed paperwork showing Izzie had been born in a USDA-licensed breeding facility—so she couldn’t be a puppy mill dog, right? But a few years later, as Rory embarked on her own difficult journey …
 
Family stories are the texture of the human fabric. From every land, from every time, they bring the past to life for young ears. In the beginning of the twentieth century, when there were no borders in the Middle East (it was then called la grande Syrie), Elia Zughaib grew up first in Damascus, then in the mountains of Lebanon. In a rural culture,…
 
Duane Jethro’s Heritage Formation and the Senses in Post-Apartheid South Africa: Aesthetics of Power (Bloomsbury, 2020) is a terrific book. In it, Jethro develops a novel analytical framework to understand the relationship between the senses (taste, smell, sight, hearing and touch) and heritage formation. Heritage formation and the senses are intim…
 
Emily Callaci's book Street Archives and City Life. Popular Intellectuals in Postcolonial Tanzania (Duke University Press, 2017) tells the histories of the young migrants who shaped the city of Dar es Salaam between 1967 and 1985. During this period, the ruling party, TANU, pursued the policy of Ujamaa or African socialism which sought the future o…
 
Sasha Roseneil, Professor of Interdisciplinary Social Science at the Institute of Advanced Studies and Dean of the Faculty of Social and Historical Studies at University College London joins today to talk about the new book The Tenacity of the Couple-Norm: Intimate Citizenship Regimes in a Changing Europe, out 2020 with UCL Press. The Tenacity of t…
 
Sometimes you come across a book that pulls you in from every angle. It offers you the space to explore your own fears and hopes all while taking you on a perilous adventure into the unknown with a character you feel you’ve met in real life. That’s a good novel, to me. That’s Alison Stine’s Road Out of Winter: An Apocalyptic Thriller (Mira Books, 2…
 
In this very special episode of New Books in Interpretive Political and Social Science we feature Lee Ann Fujii’s Interviewing in Social Science Research: A Relational Approach (Routledge, 2018), which is the fifth title in the Routledge Series on Interpretive Methods. Lee Ann Fujji was a professor at the University of Toronto who published widely …
 
Operation White Rabbit: LSD, the DEA, and the Fate of the Acid King (Simon and Schuster, 2020) traces the rise and fall—and rise and fall again—of the psychedelic community through the life of the man known as the “Acid King”: William Leonard Pickard. Pickard was a scientific prodigy, a follower of Timothy Leary, a con artist, a womanizer, a man wh…
 
Siobhán Hearne's Policing Prostitution: Regulating the Lower Classes in Late Imperial Russia (Oxford UP, 2021) examines the complex world of commercial sex in the late Russian Empire. From the 1840s until 1917, prostitution was legally tolerated across the Russian Empire under a system known as regulation. Medical police were in charge of compiling…
 
“Economics is the long-run driver” in the history of Europe’s monetary union, writes Richard Pomfret in the first of a new Cambridge Elements series on the Economics of European Integration: The Road to Monetary Union (Cambridge University Press, 2021). “Politics often determined the timing of the next step ... but it has not determined the directi…
 
Today on the New Books in History, a channel on the New Books Network, we’re here today with Christopher Close, Associate Professor of History at St. Joseph’s University in the incomparable city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to talk about his latest book, State Formation and Shared Sovereignty: The Holy Roman Empire and the Dutch Republic, 1488- 1…
 
Ramsey McGlazer's Old Schools: Modernism, Education, and the Critique of Progress (Fordham University Press, 2020), traces the ways in which a group of modernist cultural practitioners (thinkers, politicians, artists, poets, novelists, and filmmakers) across varied linguistic and cultural contexts ((Italian, English, Irish, and Brazilian) resisted …
 
Anecdote, Network, Gossip, Performance: Essays on the Shishuo xinyu (Harvard UP, 2021) is a study of the Shishuo xinyu, the most important anecdotal collection of medieval China—and arguably of the entire traditional era. In a set of interconnected essays, Jack W. Chen offers new readings of the Shishuo xinyu that draw upon social network analysis,…
 
MeaningFULL: 23 Life Changing Stories of Conquering Dieting, Weight, & Body Image Issues (Unsolicited Press, 2021) is a blend of motivational self-help, memoir, psychology, and health and wellness. Alli Spotts-De Lazzer is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, an expert in eating and body image issues, and a woman on the other side of her own d…
 
A scholarly and imaginative reconstruction of the voyage Daniel Defoe took from the pillory to literary immortality, The Shortest Way with Defoe: Robinson Crusoe, Deism, and the Novel (University of Virginia Press, 2020) contends that Robinson Crusoe contains a secret satire, written against one person, that has gone undetected for 300 years. By lo…
 
For centuries, science has largely dismissed the idea that animals experience complex emotions, despite the fact the most humans who’ve spent time in the company of animals would argue otherwise. While research on animal subjectivity is expanding, we still know relatively little about the complexities of non-humans’ emotional lives. Teya Brooks Pri…
 
Vengeance and Retribution Are Mine: Community, the Holocaust, and Abba Kovner's Avengers (Pardes, 2019) is a book by Israeli historian Dina Porat on Nakam, a small group of Holocaust survivors led by Abba Kovner which sought violent revenge against Germans. She chose the title to express her belief that humans should leave revenge for God. It was f…
 
During the middle decades of the twentieth century, the production of America’s consumer culture was centralized in New York to an extent unparalleled in the history of the United States. Every day tens of thousands of writers, editors, artists, performers, technicians, and secretaries made advertisements, produced media content, and designed the s…
 
In Cartographies of Youth Resistance: Hip-Hop, Punk, and Urban Autonomy in Mexico (U California Press, 2020), based on a decade of ethnographic fieldwork, Maurice Magaña considers how urban and migrant youth in Oaxaca embrace subcultures from hip-hop to punk and adopt creative organizing practices to create meaningful channels of participation in l…
 
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