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Burning Down the Haus: Punk Rock, Revolution, and the Fall of the Berlin Wall
Mohr, Tim
(Hardcover)

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It began with a handful of East Berlin teens who heard the Sex Pistols on a British military radio broadcast to troops in West Berlin, and it ended with the collapse of the East German dictatorship. Punk rock was a life-changing discovery. The buzz-saw guitars, the messed-up clothing and hair, the rejection of society and the DIY approach to building a new one: in their gray surroundings, where everyone’s future was preordained by some communist apparatchik, punk represented a revolutionary philosophy—quite literally, as it turned out.But as these young kids tried to form bands and became more visible, security forces—including the dreaded secret police, the Stasi—targeted them. They were spied on by friends and even members of their own families; they were expelled from schools and fired from jobs; they were beaten by police and imprisoned. Instead of conforming, the punks fought back, playing an indispensable role in the underground movements that helped bring down the Berlin Wall.This secret history of East German punk rock is not just about the music; it is a story of extraordinary bravery in the face of one of the most oppressive regimes in history. Rollicking, cinematic, deeply researched, highly readable, and thrillingly topical, Burning Down the Haus brings to life the young men and women who successfully fought authoritarianism three chords at a time—and is a fiery testament to the irrepressible spirit of revolution.


Empire of Things: How We Became a World of Consumers, from the Fifteenth Century to the Twenty-First
Trentmann, Frank
(Paperback)

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What we consume has become a central - perhaps the central - feature of modern life. Our economies live or die by spending, we increasingly define ourselves by our possessions, and this ever-richer lifestyle has had an extraordinary impact on our planet. How have we come to live with so much stuff, and how has this changed the course of history?In Empire of Things, Frank Trentmann unfolds the extraordinary story of our modern material world, from Renaissance Italy and late Ming China to today’s global economy. While consumption is often portrayed as a recent American export, this monumental and richly detailed account shows that it is in fact a truly international phenomenon with a much longer and more diverse history. Trentmann traces the influence of trade and empire on tastes, as formerly exotic goods like coffee, tobacco, Indian cotton and Chinese porcelain conquered the world, and explores the growing demand for home furnishings, fashionable clothes and convenience that transformed private and public life. The nineteenth and twentieth centuries brought department stores, credit cards and advertising, but also the rise of the ethical shopper, new generational identities and, eventually, the resurgence of the Asian consumer.With an eye to the present and future, Frank Trentmann provides a long view on the global challenges of our relentless pursuit of more - from waste and debt to stress and inequality. A masterpiece of research and storytelling many years in the making, Empire of Things recounts the epic history of the goods that have seduced, enriched and unsettled our lives over the past six hundred years.


Wild Nights: How Taming Sleep Created Our Restless World
Reiss, Benjamin
(Hardcover)

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Why is sleep frustrating for so many people? Why do we spend so much time and money managing and medicating it, and training ourselves and our children to do it correctly? In Wild Nights, Benjamin Reiss finds answers in sleep's hidden history--one that leads to our present, sleep-obsessed society, its tacitly accepted rules, and their troubling consequences.Today we define a good night's sleep very narrowly: eight hours in one shot, sealed off in private bedrooms, children apart from parents. But for most of human history, practically no one slept this way. Tracing sleep's transformation since the dawn of the industrial age, Reiss weaves together insights from literature, social and medical history, and cutting-edge science to show how and why we have tried and failed to tame sleep. In lyrical prose, he leads readers from bedrooms and laboratories to factories and battlefields to Henry David Thoreau's famous cabin at Walden Pond, telling the stories of troubled sleepers, hibernating peasants, sleepwalking preachers, cave-dwelling sleep researchers, slaves who led nighttime uprisings, rebellious workers, spectacularly frazzled parents, and utopian dreamers. We are hardly the first people, Reiss makes clear, to chafe against our modern rules for sleeping.A stirring testament to sleep's diversity, Wild Nights offers a profound reminder that in the vulnerability of slumber we can find our shared humanity. By peeling back the covers of history, Reiss recaptures sleep's mystery and grandeur and offers hope to weary readers: as sleep was transformed once before, so too can it change today.


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Victorious Century: The United Kingdom, 1800-1906
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Victorious Century: The United Kingdom, 1800-1906
Cannadine, David
(Hardcover)

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To live in nineteenth-century Britain was to experience an astonishing and unprecedented series of changes. Cities grew vast; there were revolutions in transportation, communication, science, and work--all while a growing religious skepticism rendered the intellectual landscape increasingly unrecognizable. It was an exhilarating time, and as a result, most of the countries in the world that experienced these changes were racked by political and social unrest. Britain, however, maintained a stable polity at home, and as a result it quickly found itself in a position of global leadership. In this major new work, leading historian David Cannadine has created a bold, fascinating new interpretation of nineteenth-century Britain. Britain was a country that saw itself at the summit of the world and, by some measures, this was indeed true. It had become the largest empire in history: its political stability positioned it as the leader of the new global economy and allowed it to construct the largest navy ever built. And yet it was also a society permeated with doubt, fear, and introspection. Repeatedly, politicians and writers felt themselves to be staring into the abyss and what is seen as an era of irritating self-belief was in fact obsessed with its own fragility, whether as a great power or as a moral force. Victorious Century is a comprehensive and extraordinarily stimulating history--its author catches the relish, humor and staginess of the age, but also the dilemmas faced by Britain's citizens, ones we remain familiar with today.


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The Social Sex: A History of Female Friendship
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The Social Sex: A History of Female Friendship
Yalom, Marilyn
(Paperback)

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From historian and acclaimed feminist author of How the French Invented Love and A History of the Wife comes this rich, multifaceted history of the evolution of female friendship.


Hippie Food: How Back-to-the-Landers, Longhairs, and Revolutionaries Changed the Way We Eat
Kauffman, Jonathan
(Hardcover)

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An enlightening narrative history - an entertaining fusion of Tom Wolfe and Michael Pollan - that traces the colorful origins of once unconventional foods and the diverse fringe movements, charismatic gurus, and counterculture elements that brought them to the mainstream and created a distinctly American cuisine.Food writer Jonathan Kauffman journeys back more than half a century - to the 1960s and 1970s - to tell the story of how a coterie of unusual men and women embraced an alternative lifestyle that would ultimately change how modern Americans eat. Impeccably researched, Hippie Food chronicles how the longhairs, revolutionaries, and back-to-the-landers rejected the square establishment of President Richard Nixon’s America and turned to a more idealistic and wholesome communal way of life and food.From the mystical rock-and-roll cult known as the Source Family and its legendary vegetarian restaurant in Hollywood to the Diggers’ brown bread in the Summer of Love to the rise of the co-op and the origins of the organic food craze, Kauffman reveals how today’s quotidian whole-foods staples - including sprouts, tofu, yogurt, brown rice, and whole-grain bread - were introduced and eventually became part of our diets. From coast to coast, through Oregon, Texas, Tennessee, Minnesota, Michigan, Massachusetts, and Vermont, Kauffman tracks hippie food’s journey from niche oddity to a cuisine that hit every corner of this country.A slick mix of gonzo playfulness, evocative detail, skillful pacing, and elegant writing, Hippie Food is a lively, engaging, and informative read that deepens our understanding of our culture and our lives today.


She the People: A Graphic History of Uprisings, Breakdowns, Setbacks, Revolts, and Enduring Hope on the Unfinished Road to Women's Equality
Deaderick, Jen
(Softcover)

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A sweeping, smart, and smart-ass graphic history of women's ongoing quest for equalityIn March 2017, Nevada surprised the rest of America by suddenly ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment - thirty-five years after the deadline had passed. Hey, better late than never, right? Then, lo and behold, a few months later, Illinois followed suit. Hurrah for the Land of Lincoln!That left the ERA just one state short of the congressional minimum for ratification. One state - and a legacy of shame - are what stand between American women and full equality.She the People takes on the campaign for change by offering a cheekily illustrated, sometimes sarcastic, and all-too-true account of women's evolving rights and citizenship. Divided into twelve historical periods between 1776 and today, journalist, historian, and activist Jen Deaderick takes readers on a walk down the ERA's rocky road to become part of our Constitution by highlighting changes in the legal status of women alongside the significant cultural and social influences of the time, so women's history is revealed as an integral part of U.S. history, and not a tangential sideline.Clever and dynamic, She the People is informative, entertaining, and a vital reminder that women still aren't fully accepted as equal citizens in America.


Walls: A History of Civilization in Blood and Brick
Frye, David
(Hardcover)

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For over ten thousand years, much of humankind has lived inside walls behind walls behind still more walls. Walls have protected us and divided us, but have they also affected the way we think, work, and create?In a brisk and compulsively readable narrative of invasions, empires, kings, and khans, David Frye presents a bold new theory: walls haven't just influenced the course of history; they have profoundly shaped the human psyche.For thousands of years, people have built walls and assaulted them, admired walls and reviled them. Great walls have appeared on every continent, the handiwork of Persians, Romans, Chinese, Inca, Ukrainians, and dozens of other peoples. They have accompanied the rise of cities, nations, and empires. And yet they rarely appear in our history books.In Walls, David Frye makes a powerful case for rewriting history. Drawing on evidence from around the world, as well as his own experiences on archaeological digs, Frye takes us on a provocative and occasionally humorous journey across windswept deserts and grassy, Northumbrian hills. As Frye guides us through a maze of exotic locales, investigating the coldest of cold cases, he gradually exposes a broader story with implications for the present as well as the past. The history of walls becomes more than a tale of bricks and stone; it becomes the story of who we are and how we came to be.


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The Ocean of Life: The Fate of Man an the Sea
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The Ocean of Life: The Fate of Man an the Sea
Roberts, Callum
(Paperback)

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The sea feeds and sustains us, but its future is under catastrophic threat. In this powerful and ambitious book Callum Roberts - one of the world's foremost conservation biologists - tells the story of the history of the sea, from the earliest traces of water on earth to the oceans as we know them today. He offers a devastating account of the impact of overfishing, deep-sea mining, pollution, and climate change and explains what we must do now to preserve our rapidly dwindling marine life. Passionate and persuasive, The Ocean of Life is a wake-up call that will appeal to anyone who loves the sea and its creatures.


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Hippie Food: How Back-to-the-Landers, Longhairs, and Revolutionaries Changed the Way We Eat
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Hippie Food: How Back-to-the-Landers, Longhairs, and Revolutionaries Changed the Way We Eat
Kauffman, Jonathan
(Paperback)

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An enlightening narrative history - an entertaining fusion of Tom Wolfe and Michael Pollan - that traces the colorful origins of once unconventional foods and the diverse fringe movements, charismatic gurus, and counterculture elements that brought them to the mainstream and created a distinctly American cuisine.Food writer Jonathan Kauffman journeys back more than half a century - to the 1960s and 1970s - to tell the story of how a coterie of unusual men and women embraced an alternative lifestyle that would ultimately change how modern Americans eat. Impeccably researched, Hippie Food chronicles how the longhairs, revolutionaries, and back-to-the-landers rejected the square establishment of President Richard Nixon’s America and turned to a more idealistic and wholesome communal way of life and food.From the mystical rock-and-roll cult known as the Source Family and its legendary vegetarian restaurant in Hollywood to the Diggers’ brown bread in the Summer of Love to the rise of the co-op and the origins of the organic food craze, Kauffman reveals how today’s quotidian whole-foods staples - including sprouts, tofu, yogurt, brown rice, and whole-grain bread - were introduced and eventually became part of our diets. From coast to coast, through Oregon, Texas, Tennessee, Minnesota, Michigan, Massachusetts, and Vermont, Kauffman tracks hippie food’s journey from niche oddity to a cuisine that hit every corner of this country.A slick mix of gonzo playfulness, evocative detail, skillful pacing, and elegant writing, Hippie Food is a lively, engaging, and informative read that deepens our understanding of our culture and our lives today.


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We Believe the Children: A Moral Panic in the 1980s
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We Believe the Children: A Moral Panic in the 1980s
Beck, Richard
(Hardcover)

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A brilliant, disturbing portrait of the dawn of the culture wars, when America started to tear itself apart with doubts, wild allegations, and an unfounded fear for the safety of children.During the 1980s in California, New Jersey, New York, Michigan, Massachusetts, Florida, Tennessee, Texas, Ohio, and elsewhere, day care workers were arrested, charged, tried, and convicted of committing horrible sexual crimes against the children they cared for. These crimes, social workers and prosecutors said, had gone undetected for years, and they consisted of a brutality and sadism that defied all imagining. The dangers of babysitting services and day care centers became a national news media fixation. Of the many hundreds of people who were investigated in connection with day care and ritual abuse cases around the country, some 190 were formally charged with crimes, leading to more than 80 convictions.It would take years for people to realize what the defendants had said all along—that these prosecutions were the product of a decade-long outbreak of collective hysteria on par with the Salem witch trials. Social workers and detectives employed coercive interviewing techniques that led children to tell them what they wanted to hear. Local and national journalists fanned the flames by promoting the stories' salacious aspects, while aggressive prosecutors sought to make their careers by unearthing an unspeakable evil where parents feared it most.Using extensive archival research and drawing on dozens of interviews conducted with the hysteria's major figures, n+1 editor Richard Beck shows how a group of legislators, doctors, lawyers, and parents—most working with the best of intentions—set the stage for a cultural disaster. The climate of fear that surrounded these cases influenced a whole series of arguments about women, children, and sex. It also drove a right-wing cultural resurgence that, in many respects, continues to this day.


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Printer's Error: Irreverent Stories From Book History
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Printer's Error: Irreverent Stories From Book History
Romney, J. P.
(Hardcover)

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Since the Gutenberg Bible first went on sale in 1455, printing has been viewed as one of the highest achievements of human innovation. But the march of progress hasn’t been smooth; downright bizarre is more like it. Printer’s Error chronicles some of the strangest and most humorous episodes in the history of Western printing, and makes clear that we’ve succeeded despite ourselves. Rare-book expert Rebecca Romney and author J. P. Romney take us from monasteries and museums to auction houses and libraries to introduce curious episodes in the history of print that have had a profound impact on our world.Take, for example, the Gutenberg Bible. While the book is regarded as the first printed work in the Western world, Gutenberg’s name doesn’t appear anywhere on it. Today, Johannes Gutenberg is recognized as the father of Western printing. But for the first few hundred years after the invention of the printing press, no one knew who printed the first book. This long-standing mystery took researchers down a labyrinth of ancient archives and libraries, and unearthed surprising details, such as the fact that Gutenberg’s financier sued him, repossessed his printing equipment, and started his own printing business afterward. Eventually the first printed book was tracked to the library of Cardinal Mazarin in France, and Gutenberg’s forty-two-line Bible was finally credited to him, thus ensuring Gutenberg’s name would be remembered by middle-school students worldwide.Like the works of Sarah Vowell, John Hodgman, and Ken Jennings, Printer’s Error is a rollicking ride through the annals of time and the printed word.


The Men Who Stare at Goats
Ronson, Jon
(Paperback)

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Bizarre military history: In 1979, a crack commando unit was established by the most gifted minds within the U.S. Army. Defying all known laws of physics and accepted military practice, they believed that a soldier could adopt the cloak of invisibility, pass cleanly through walls, and - perhaps most chillingly - kill goats just by staring at them. They were the First Earth Battalion, entrusted with defending America from all known adversaries. And they really weren't joking. What's more, they're back - and they're fighting the War on Terror. An uproarious exploration of American military paranoia: With investigations ranging from the mysterious "Goat Lab," to Uri Geller's covert psychic work with the CIA, to the increasingly bizarre role played by a succession of U.S. presidents, this might just be the funniest, most unsettling book you will ever read - if only because it is all true and is still happening today.


First Freedom: A Ride Through America's Enduring History with the Gun
Harsanyi, David
(Hardcover)

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For America, the gun is a story of innovation, power, violence, character, and freedom.From the founding of the nation to the pioneering of the West, from the freeing of the slaves to the urbanization of the twentieth century, our country has had a complex and lasting relationship with firearms. Now, in First Freedom, nationally syndicated columnist and veteran writer David Harsanyi explores the ways in which firearms have helped preserve our religious, economic, and cultural institutions for over two centuries. From Samuel Colt’s early entrepreneurism to the successful firearms technology that helped make the United States a superpower, the gun is inextricably tied to our exceptional rise.In the vein of popular histories like Salt and Seabiscuit, Harsanyi takes you on a captivating and thrilling ride of Second Amendment history that demonstrates why guns are not only an integral part of America’s past, but also an essential part of its future.


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The Matter of the Heart: A History of the Heart in Eleven Operations
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The Matter of the Heart: A History of the Heart in Eleven Operations
Morris, Thomas
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An eye-opening and heroic story of pioneering heart surgeons, structured around eleven operations.For thousands of years the human heart remained the deepest of mysteries; both home to the soul and an organ too complex to touch, let alone operate on.Then, in the late nineteenth century, medics began going where no one had dared go before. The following decades saw the mysteries of the heart exposed, thanks to pioneering surgeons, brave patients and even sacrificial dogs.In eleven landmark operations, Thomas Morris tells us stories of triumph, reckless bravery, swaggering arrogance, jealousy and rivalry, and incredible ingenuity: the trail-blazing ‘blue baby’ procedure that transformed wheezing infants into pink, healthy children; the first human heart transplant, which made headline news around the globe. And yet the heart still feels sacred: just before the operation to fit one of the first artificial hearts, the patient’s wife asked the surgeon if he would still be able to love her.The Matter of the Heart gives us a view over the surgeon’s shoulder, showing us the heart’s inner workings and failings. It describes both a human story and a history of risk-taking that has ultimately saved millions of lives.


The Frighteners: A Journey Through our Cultural Fascination with the Macabre
Laws, Peter
(Hardcover)

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The Firghteners is a bizarrely compelling, laugh-out-loud exploration of society’s fascination with the dark, spooky, and downright repellent, written by a man who went from horror-obsessed church hater to a God-fearing Christian, who then reconciled his love of the macabre with his new faith.Laws takes us on a worldwide adventure to shine a light on the dark corners of our own minds. He meets the people who collect serial killers’ hair, spends a night in a haunted hotel, and has dinner with a woman who keeps her own coffin in her living room, ready for the big day. He’s chased by zombies through an underground nuclear bunker, hunts a supposed real-life werewolf through the city streets, and meets self-proclaimed vampires who drink actual blood.From the corpse-packed crypts of Rome to the spooky streets of a Transylvanian night, he asks why he, and millions of other people, are drawn to ponder monsters, ghosts, death, and gore. And, in a world that worships rationality and points an accusing finger at violent video games and gruesome films, can a love of morbid culture actually give both adults and children safe ways to confront our mortality? Might it even have power to re-enchant our jaded world?Grab your crucifixes, pack the silver bullets, and join the Sinister Minister on this celebratory romp through our morbid curiosities.


Homelands: Four Friends, Two Countries, and the Fate of the Great Mexican-American Migration
Corchado, Alfredo
(Hardcover)

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From prizewinning journalist and immigration expert Alfredo Corchado comes the sweeping story of the great Mexican migration from the late 1980s to today.


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Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors (Updated)
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Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors (Updated)
Wade, Nicholas
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Nicholas Wade’s articles are a major reason why the science section has become the most popular, nationwide, in the New York Times. In his groundbreaking Before the Dawn, Wade reveals humanity’s origins as never before - a journey made possible only recently by genetic science, whose incredible findings have answered such questions as: What was the first human language like? How large were the first societies, and how warlike were they? When did our ancestors first leave Africa, and by what route did they leave? By eloquently solving these and numerous other mysteries, Wade offers nothing less than a uniquely complete retelling of a story that began 500 centuries ago.


Wasn't That a Time: The Weavers, the Blacklist, and the Battle for the Soul of America
Jarnow, Jesse
(Hardcover)

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The dramatic untold story of the Weavers, the hit-making folk-pop quartet destroyed with the aid of the United States government--and who changed the world, anyway.Following a series of top-ten hits that became instant American standards, the Weavers dissolved at the height of their fame. Wasn't That a Time: The Weavers, the Blacklist, and the Battle for the Soul of America details the remarkable rise of Pete Seeger's unlikely band of folk heroes, from basement hootenannies to the top of the charts, and the harassment campaign that brought them down.Exploring how a pop group's harmonies might be heard as a threat worthy of decades of investigation by the FBI, Wasn't That a Time turns the black-and-white 1950s into vivid color, using the Weavers to illuminate a dark and complex period of American history. With origins in the radical folk collective the Almanac Singers and the ambitious People's Songs, the singing activists in the Weavers set out to change the world with songs as their weapons, pioneering the use of music as a transformative political organizing tool.Using previously unseen journals and letters, unreleased recordings, once-secret government documents, and other archival research, Jesse Jarnow uncovers the immense hopes, incredible pressures, and daily struggles of the four distinct and often unharmonious personalities at the heart of the Weavers.In an era defined by a sharp political divide that feels all too familiar, the Weavers became heroes. With a class- and race-conscious global vision that now makes them seem like time travelers from the twenty-first century, the Weavers became a direct influence on a generation of musicians and listeners, teaching the power of eclectic songs and joyous, participatory harmonies.


Left Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50
Poirier, Agnes
(Paperback)

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An incandescent group portrait of the midcentury artists and thinkers whose lives, loves, collaborations, and passions were forged against the wartime destruction and postwar rebirth of ParisIn this fascinating tour of a celebrated city during one of its most trying, significant, and ultimately triumphant eras, Agnes Poirier unspools the stories of the poets, writers, painters, and philosophers whose lives collided to extraordinary effect between 1940 and 1950. She gives us the human drama behind some of the most celebrated works of the 20th century, from Richard Wright’s Native Son, Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex, and James Baldwin's Giovanni's Room to Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot and Saul Bellow's Augie March, along with the origin stories of now legendary movements, from Existentialism to the Theatre of the Absurd, New Journalism, bebop, and French feminism.We follow Arthur Koestler and Norman Mailer as young men, peek inside Picasso’s studio, and trail the twists of Camus's Sartre's, and Beauvoir’s epic love stories. We witness the births and deaths of newspapers and literary journals and peer through keyholes to see the first kisses and last nights of many ill-advised bedfellows. At every turn, Poirier deftly hones in on the most compelling and colorful history, without undermining the crucial significance of the era. She brings to life the flawed, visionary Parisians who fell in love and out of it, who infuriated and inspired one another, all while reconfiguring the world's political, intellectual, and creative landscapes. With its balance of clear-eyed historical narrative and irresistible anecdotal charm, Left Bank transports readers to a Paris teeming with passion, drama, and life.


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1913: In Search of the World Before the Great War
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1913: In Search of the World Before the Great War
Emmerson, Charles
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Today, 1913 is inevitably viewed through the lens of 1914: as the last year before a war that would shatter the global economic order and tear Europe apart, undermining its global pre-eminence. Our perspectives narrowed by hindsight, the world of that year is reduced to its most frivolous features—last summers in grand aristocratic residences—or its most destructive ones: the unresolved rivalries of the great European powers, the fear of revolution, violence in the Balkans.In this illuminating history, Charles Emmerson liberates the world of 1913 from this “prelude to war” narrative, and explores it as it was, in all its richness and complexity. Traveling from Europe's capitals, then at the height of their global reach, to the emerging metropolises of Canada and the United States, the imperial cities of Asia and Africa, and the boomtowns of Australia and South America, he provides a panoramic view of a world crackling with possibilities, its future still undecided, its outlook still open.The world in 1913 was more modern than we remember, more similar to our own times than we expect, more globalized than ever before. The Gold Standard underpinned global flows of goods and money, while mass migration reshaped the world's human geography. Steamships and sub-sea cables encircled the earth, along with new technologies and new ideas. Ford's first assembly line cranked to life in 1913 in Detroit. The Woolworth Building went up in New York. While Mexico was in the midst of bloody revolution, Winnipeg and Buenos Aires boomed. An era of petro-geopolitics opened in Iran. China appeared to be awaking from its imperial slumber. Paris celebrated itself as the city of light—Berlin as the city of electricity.Full of fascinating characters, stories, and insights, 1913: In Search of the World before the Great War brings a lost world vividly back to life, with provocative implications for how we understand our past and how we think about our future.


A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race, and Human History
Wade, Nicholas
(Paperback)

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A new account of the genetic basis of race and the role of evolution in human history.Human evolution, conventional wisdom holds, ended long before prehistory began. Convenient as this view may be, new research into the human genome shows it cannot be right. Nicholas Wade, a science reporter for many years with The New York Times, cites mounting evidence that humans have continued to evolve up until the present day, giving rise to the various races of humankind and to the variations in social behavior that may help make human societies distinctive. While rejecting unequivocally the notion that there is any superior race, Wade argues that the study of recent evolution holds information critical to the understanding of human societies and history, and that the public interest is best served by pursuing the scientific truth without fear.


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The German Genius: Europe'sThird Renaissance, the Second Scientific Revolution, and the Twentieth  Century
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The German Genius: Europe'sThird Renaissance, the Second Scientific Revolution, and the Twentieth Century
Watson, Peter
(Softcover)

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From the end of the Baroque era and the death of Bach to the rise of Hitler, Germany was transformed from a poor relation among Western nations into a dominant intellectual and cultural force. By 1933, Germans had won more Nobel Prizes than the British and Americans combined. Yet this remarkable genius was cut down in its prime by Adolf Hitler and his disastrous Third Reich—a brutal legacy that has overshadowed the nation’s achievements ever since. In this absorbing cultural and intellectual history, Peter Watson goes back through time to explore the origins of the German genius, explaining how and why it flourished, how it shaped our lives, and, most important, how it continues to influence our world. Watson’s virtuoso sweep through modern German thought and culture will challenge and confound both the stereotypes the world has of Germany and those that Germany has of itself.


Chefs, Drugs and Rock & Roll: How Food Lovers, Free Spirits, Misfits and Wanderers Created a New American Profession
Friedman, Andrew
(Hardcover)

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Chefs, Drugs and Rock & Roll transports readers back in time to witness the remarkable evolution of the American restaurant chef in the 1970s and '80s. Taking a rare, coast-to-coast perspective, Andrew Friedman goes inside Chez Panisse and other Bay Area restaurants to show how the politically charged backdrop of Berkeley helped draw new talent to the profession; into the historically underrated community of Los Angeles chefs, including a young Wolfgang Puck and future stars such as Susan Feniger, Mary Sue Milliken, and Nancy Silverton; and into the clash of cultures between established French chefs in New York City and the American game changers behind The Quilted Giraffe, The River Cafe, and other East Coast establishments. We also meet young cooks of the time such as Tom Colicchio and Emeril Lagasse who went on to become household names in their own right. Along the way, the chefs, their struggles, their cliques, and, of course, their restaurants are brought to life in vivid detail. As the '80's unspool, we see the profession evolve as American masters like Thomas Keller rise, and watch the genesis of a “chef nation” as these culinary pioneers crisscross the country to open restaurants and collaborate on special events, and legendary hangouts like Blue Ribbon become social focal points, all as the industry-altering Food Network shimmers on the horizon.Told largely in the words of the people who lived it, as captured in more than two hundred author interviews with writers like Ruch Reichl and legends like Jeremiah Tower, Alice Waters, Jonathan Waxman, and Barry Wine, Chefs, Drugs and Rock & Roll treats readers to an unparalleled 360-degree re-creation of the business and the times through the perspectives not only of the groundbreaking chefs but also of line cooks, front-of-house personnel, investors, and critics who had front-row seats to this extraordinary transformation.


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