The Nobility of Failure [EPUB]

The Nobility of Failure [EPUB]
The Nobility of Failure: Tragic Heroes in the History of Japan by Ivan Morris
1975 | EPUB | 3.5MB

Alexander, Robin Hood, Wellington, George Washington... The Western literatures are packed with the stories—real and otherwise—of diverse heroes, but most of them share the common element of victory. Many of them died heroically to achieve their goals.

In Japan, however, many of the most revered heroes lost their lives without achieving their goals, and in many cases fought their battles in full realization that they would end in abject defeat and death. This cultural background remains a bedrock underlying the modern Japanese psyche, and continues to shape the Japanese as individuals and a society even today, unconsciously, in the same way the West is still affected by the myths and legends passed down from Greece and Rome.

Long recognized as a core book in any study of Japanese culture and literature, The Nobility of Failure examines the lives and deaths of nine historical individuals who faced overwhelming odds, and, realizing they were doomed, accepted their fate--to be killed in battle or by execution, to wither in exile, or to escape through ritual suicide. Morris then turns his attention to the kamikaze pilots of World War II, who gave their lives in defense of their nation in the full realization that their deaths would have little effect on the course of the war.

Through detail, crystal-clear prose and unmatched narrative sweep and brilliance, Professor Morris takes you into the innermost hearts of the Japanese people. Supported by extensive notes and bibliography, the chapters cover:

  • Yamato Takeru
  • Yorozu
  • Arima no Miko
  • Sugawara no Michizane
  • Minamoto no Yoshitsune
  • Kusunoki Masashige
  • Amakusa Shiro
  • Oshio Heihachiro
  • Saigo Takamori
  • and the kamikaze fighters of World War II

The Tyranny of E-mail [EPUB]

The Tyranny of E-mail [EPUB]
The Tyranny of E-mail: The Four-Thousand-Year Journey to Your Inbox by John Freeman
2009 | EPUB | 1.81MB

The award-winning president of the National Book Critics Circle examines the astonishing growth of email—and how it is changing our lives, not always for the better.

John Freeman is one of America’s pre-eminent literary critics; now in this, his first book, he presents an elegant and erudite investigation into a technology that has revolutionized the way we work, communicate, and even think.

There’s no question that email is an explosive phenomenon. The first email, developed for military use, was sent less than forty years ago; by 2011, there will be 3.2 billion users. The average corporate employee now receives upwards of 130 emails per day; by 2009 that number is expected to reach nearly 200. And the flood of messages is ceaseless: for increasing numbers of people, email means work now occupies home time as well as office hours.

Drawing extensively on the research of linguists, behavioral scientists, cultural critics, and philosophers, Freeman examines the way email is taking a mounting toll on a variety of behavior, reducing time for leisure and contemplation, despoiling subtlety and expression in language, and separating us from each other in the unending and lonely battle with the overfull inbox. He enters a plea for communication which is slower, more nuanced, and, above all, more sociable.

A Short History of Stupid [EPUB]

A Short History of Stupid [EPUB]
A Short History of Stupid: The decline of reason and why public debate makes us want to scream by Helen Razer, Bernard Keane
2014 | EPUB | 0.9MB

Recently, overwhelming mutual despair at the faltering quality of public debate and the apparent death of logic and reason has driven writers Helen Razer and Bernard Keane to the desperate act of befriending each other.

Over many long rants against the state of the world and the way people write about it, govern it and behave in it, they decided that Never Have Things Been So Bad. To remedy (or at least assuage) the current ubiquity of Stupid they decided that a book describing its nature and inexorable rise must be written.

What is Stupid? Stupid is the rejection of the discomfort of intellectual rigour in favour of the mentally comfortable and convenient. Razer and Keane skewer everything that has made them want to shoot the TV lately: climate change denial, vaccination denial, fanaticism, paternalism, moral panic, New Ageism, the War on Terror, conspiracy theories, the internet, the mental health industry, conspicuous compassion, postmodernism and the cult of 'I'.

A Short History of Stupid is angry, funny, savage, smart, provocative, infuriating and incendiary. It has echoes of de Botton in that it is conversant with the history of thought, but it is a lot more disrespectful. It is as rude and as inflammatory as O'Rourke and as penetrating and unforgiving as Hitchens. It is funny, but it is also at once a provocation and a comfort for those with like minds.

Above all, it will inspire debate, reassure the terminally frustrated and outrage the righteously Stupid. It is a book whose time has definitely come.

Algerian Chronicles by Albert Camus [PDF]

Algerian Chronicles by Albert Camus [PDF]
Algerian Chronicles by Albert Camus
2013 | PDF | 0.7MB

More than fifty years after Algerian independence, Albert Camus’ Algerian Chronicles appears here in English for the first time. Published in France in 1958, the same year the Algerian War brought about the collapse of the Fourth French Republic, it is one of Camus’ most political works—an exploration of his commitments to Algeria. Dismissed or disdained at publication, today Algerian Chronicles, with its prescient analysis of the dead end of terrorism, enjoys a new life in Arthur Goldhammer’s elegant translation.

“Believe me when I tell you that Algeria is where I hurt at this moment,” Camus, who was the most visible symbol of France’s troubled relationship with Algeria, writes, “as others feel pain in their lungs.” Gathered here are Camus’ strongest statements on Algeria from the 1930s through the 1950s, revised and supplemented by the author for publication in book form.

In her introduction, Alice Kaplan illuminates the dilemma faced by Camus: he was committed to the defense of those who suffered colonial injustices, yet was unable to support Algerian national sovereignty apart from France. An appendix of lesser-known texts that did not appear in the French edition complements the picture of a moralist who posed questions about violence and counter-violence, national identity, terrorism, and justice that continue to illuminate our contemporary world.

Murder in the Stacks [EPUB]

Murder in the Stacks [EPUB]
Murder in the Stacks: Penn State, Betsy Aardsma, and the Killer Who Got Away by David DeKok
2014 | EPUB | 8.43MB

On Nov. 28, 1969, Betsy Aardsma, a 22-year-old graduate student in English at Penn State, was stabbed to death in the stacks of Pattee Library at the university’s main campus in State College. For more than forty years, her murder went unsolved, though detectives with the Pennsylvania State Police and local citizens worked tirelessly to find her killer. The mystery was eventually solved—after the death of the murderer.

This book will reveal the story behind what has been a scary mystery for generations of Penn State students and explain why the Pennsylvania State Police failed to bring her killer to justice.More than a simple true crime story, the book weaves together the events, culture, and attitudes of the late 1960s, memorializing Betsy Aardsma and her time and place in history.

Wordcatcher: An Odyssey into the World of Weird and Wonderful Words [Audiobook]

Wordcatcher: An Odyssey into the World of Weird and Wonderful Words [Audiobook]
Wordcatcher: An Odyssey into the World of Weird and Wonderful Words [Audiobook] by Phil Cousineau, read by Jack Chekijian
2011 | MP3 VBR ~ 67 kbps | 7 hrs 13 mins | 214.44MB

Who knew that the great country of Canada is named for a mistake? How about "bedswerver", the best Elizabethan insult to hurl at a cheating boyfriend?

By exploring the delightful back stories of the 250 words in Wordcatcher, listeners will be lured by language and entangled in etymologies. Author Phil Cousineau takes us on a tour into the obscure territory of word origins with great erudition and endearing curiosity.

The English poet W. H. Auden was once asked to teach a poetry class, and when 200 students applied to study with him, he only had room for 20 of them. When asked how he chose his students, he said he picked the ones who actually loved words. So too, with this book - it takes a special wordcatcher to create a treasure chest of remarkable words and their origins, and any word lover will relish the stories that Cousineau has discovered.

365 Days of Mindfulness [EPUB]

365 Days of Mindfulness [EPUB]
365 Days of Mindfulness: Daily Mindfulness Tips and Quotes by White Lemon
2015 | EPUB | 10.61MB

We have provided you with 365 thoughts for the day, one for each day of the year. These tips will help set a positive tone for your day and invoke happy feelings in you. Each thought is accompanied by a quote, which sheds some light on the tip and pushes on the road of happiness and self-acceptance.

Mindfulness is said to be the deliberate, accepting and non-judgmental emphasis of your attention on the feelings, views and sensations that occur in the present moment, without thinking about the baggage the past leaves us with or the worries of an uncertain future.

You do not need long speeches of motivation to make you feel happy, a little positive though is enough to make you feel good about yourself. This is what mindfulness is about – taking control of your thoughts and getting rid of all the negativity inside you.

Learning and Memory: From Brain to Behavior [PDF]

Learning and Memory: From Brain to Behavior [PDF]
Learning and Memory: From Brain to Behavior, 2nd Edition by Mark A Gluck, Eduardo Mercado, Catherine E Myers
2013 | PDF | 107.01MB

Gluck, Mercado and Myers’ breakthrough first edition brought a long overdue modern perspective to the learning and memory textbook. It was the first book for the course developed from page one to account for the growing importance of neuroscience in the field, the first to compare brain studies and behavioral approaches in human and other animal species, and the first available in full-color throughout.

Rigorously updated, with a convenient new modular format, Learning and Memory, Second Edition, is unmatched at showing students where the study of learning and memory is and where it is heading. Requiring no prerequisite coursework, it connects learning, memory, and neuroscience in a way that fits your classroom.

UNBORED Games: Serious Fun for Everyone [EPUB]

UNBORED Games: Serious Fun for Everyone [EPUB]
UNBORED Games: Serious Fun for Everyone by Elizabeth Foy Larsen, Joshua Glenn
2014 | EPUB | 66.84MB

UNBORED Games has all the smarts, creativity, and DIY spirit of the original UNBORED (“It's a book! It's a guide! It's a way of life!” -Los Angeles Magazine), but with a laser-like focus on the activities we do for pure fun: to while away a rainy day, to test our skills and stretch our imaginations-games. There are more than seventy games here, 50 of them all new, plus many more recommendations, and they cover the full gambit, from old-fashioned favorites to today's high-tech games. The book offers a gold mine of creative, constructive fun: intricate clapping games, bike rodeo, Google Earth challenges, croquet golf, capture the flag, and the best ever apps to play with Grandma, to name only a handful. Gaming is a whole culture for kids to explore, and the book will be complete with gaming history and interviews with awesome game designers. The lessons here: all games can be self-customized, or hacked. You can even make up your own games. Some could even change the world.

The original UNBORED has taken its place as a much beloved, distinctly contemporary family brand. UNBORED Games extends the franchise -- to be followed by UNBORED Adventure -- in a new handy flexibound format, illustrated in full color throughout. Soon, there will be a whole shelf of serious fun the whole family can enjoy indoors, outdoors, online and offline.

Nazis, Islamists, and the Making of the Modern Middle East [EPUB]

Nazis, Islamists, and the Making of the Modern Middle East [EPUB]
Nazis, Islamists, and the Making of the Modern Middle East by Barry Rubin, Wolfgang G Schwanitz
2014 | EPUB | 20.92MB

During the 1930s and 1940s, a unique and lasting political alliance was forged among Third Reich leaders, Arab nationalists, and Muslim religious authorities. From this relationship sprang a series of dramatic events that, despite their profound impact on the course of World War II, remained secret until now. In this groundbreaking book, esteemed Middle East scholars Barry Rubin and Wolfgang G. Schwanitz uncover for the first time the complete story of this dangerous alliance and explore its continuing impact on Arab politics in the twenty-first century.

Rubin and Schwanitz reveal, for example, the full scope of Palestinian leader Amin al-Husaini’s support of Hitler’s genocidal plans against European and Middle Eastern Jews. In addition, they expose the extent of Germany’s long-term promotion of Islamism and jihad. Drawing on unprecedented research in European, American, and Middle East archives, many recently opened and never before written about, the authors offer new insight on the intertwined development of Nazism and Islamism and its impact on the modern Middle East.

Hot Books in the Cold War [PDF]

Hot Books in the Cold War [PDF]
Hot Books in the Cold War: The CIA-Funded Secret Western Book Distribution Program Behind the Iron Curtain by Alfred A Reisch
2013 | PDF | 14.59MB

This study reveals the hidden story of the secret book distribution program to Eastern Europe financed by the CIA during the Cold War. At its height between 1957 and 1970, the book program was one of the least known but most effective methods of penetrating the Iron Curtain, reaching thousands of intellectuals and professionals in the Soviet Bloc.

Concerning the Spiritual—and the Concrete—in Kandinsky’s Art [EPUB]

Concerning the Spiritual—and the Concrete—in Kandinsky’s Art [EPUB]
Concerning the Spiritual—and the Concrete—in Kandinsky’s Art by Lisa Florman
2014 | EPUB | 28.26MB

This book examines the art and writings of Wassily Kandinsky, who is widely regarded as one of the first artists to produce non-representational paintings. Crucial to an understanding of Kandinsky's intentions is On the Spiritual in Art, the celebrated essay he published in 1911. Where most scholars have taken its repeated references to "spirit" as signaling quasi-religious or mystical concerns, Florman argues instead that Kandinsky's primary frame of reference was G.W.F. Hegel's Aesthetics, in which art had similarly been presented as a vehicle for the developing self-consciousness of spirit (or Geist, in German).

In addition to close readings of Kandinsky's writings, the book also includes a discussion of a 1936 essay on the artist's paintings written by his own nephew, philosopher Alexandre Kojève, the foremost Hegel scholar in France at that time. It also provides detailed analyses of individual paintings by Kandinsky, demonstrating how the development of his oeuvre challenges Hegel's views on modern art, yet operates in much the same manner as does Hegel's philosophical system.

Through the work of a single, crucial artist, Florman presents a radical new account of why painting turned to abstraction in the early years of the twentieth century.

The Glass Cage: Automation and Us [Audiobook]

The Glass Cage: Automation and Us [Audiobook]
The Glass Cage: Automation and Us [Audiobook] by Nicholas Carr, read by Jeff Cummings
2014 | M4B@64 kbps + EPUB | 8 hrs 40 mins | 231.82MB

At once a celebration of technology and a warning about its misuse, The Glass Cage will change the way you think about the tools you use every day.

In The Glass Cage, bestselling author Nicholas Carr digs behind the headlines about factory robots and self-driving cars, wearable computers and digitized medicine, as he explores the hidden costs of granting software dominion over our work and our leisure. Even as they bring ease to our lives, these programs are stealing something essential from us.

Drawing on psychological and neurological studies that underscore how tightly people’s happiness and satisfaction are tied to performing hard work in the real world, Carr reveals something we already suspect: shifting our attention to computer screens can leave us disengaged and discontented.

From nineteenth-century textile mills to the cockpits of modern jets, from the frozen hunting grounds of Inuit tribes to the sterile landscapes of GPS maps, The Glass Cage explores the impact of automation from a deeply human perspective, examining the personal as well as the economic consequences of our growing dependence on computers.

With a characteristic blend of history and philosophy, poetry and science, Carr takes us on a journey from the work and early theory of Adam Smith and Alfred North Whitehead to the latest research into human attention, memory, and happiness, culminating in a moving meditation on how we can use technology to expand the human experience.

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions [EPUB]

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions [EPUB]
The Structure of Scientific Revolutions: 50th Anniversary Edition by Thomas S Kuhn
2012 | EPUB | 0.5MB

A good book may have the power to change the way we see the world, but a great book actually becomes part of our daily consciousness, pervading our thinking to the point that we take it for granted, and we forget how provocative and challenging its ideas once were—and still are. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is that kind of book. When it was first published in 1962, it was a landmark event in the history and philosophy of science. Fifty years later, it still has many lessons to teach.

With The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Kuhn challenged long-standing linear notions of scientific progress, arguing that transformative ideas don’t arise from the day-to-day, gradual process of experimentation and data accumulation but that the revolutions in science, those breakthrough moments that disrupt accepted thinking and offer unanticipated ideas, occur outside of “normal science,” as he called it. Though Kuhn was writing when physics ruled the sciences, his ideas on how scientific revolutions bring order to the anomalies that amass over time in research experiments are still instructive in our biotech age.

This new edition of Kuhn’s essential work in the history of science includes an insightful introduction by Ian Hacking, which clarifies terms popularized by Kuhn, including paradigm and incommensurability, and applies Kuhn’s ideas to the science of today. Usefully keyed to the separate sections of the book, Hacking’s introduction provides important background information as well as a contemporary context. Newly designed, with an expanded index, this edition will be eagerly welcomed by the next generation of readers seeking to understand the history of our perspectives on science.

The Secret History of the Reptilians [EPUB]

The Secret History of the Reptilians [EPUB]
The Secret History of the Reptilians: The Pervasive Presence of the Serpent in Human History, Religion and Alien Mythos by Scott Alan Roberts
2013 | EPUB + MOBI | 1.03/0.9MB

Where the bloodlines of the Nephilim leave off, the real story just begins.

Or does it go back even further than that?

The very real probability that non-human intelligences visited and even copulated with primordial humans is detailed in civilization's most ancient cultural and religious records. These historical records further reveal that these intelligences were reptilian in nature--or, at the very least, have been represented throughout human history in reptilian form.

From the Serpent, Nawcash, in the Garden of Eden; Atum, the Egyptian snake-man; and Quetzalcotl, the feathered serpent god of the Mayans to the double-helix snake symbol of Enki/Ea in ancient Sumerian literature, the serpent has been the omnipresent link between humans and the gods in every culture.

In The Secret History of the Reptilians, Scott Alan Roberts investigates and examines the pervasive presence of the serpent in human history, religion, culture, and politics.

Are we the product of an extraterrestrial race that moves and breathes--and even breeds--beneath the surface of all of human history?

Put on your thinking cap and take an historical, anthropological, archaeological plunge into the heady waters of extraterrestrial origins.

The Double Helix [EPUB]

The Double Helix [EPUB]
The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA by James D Watson
1996 | EPUB | 3.46MB

The classic personal account of Watson and Crick’s groundbreaking discovery of the structure of DNA, now with an introduction by Sylvia Nasar, author of A Beautiful Mind.

By identifying the structure of DNA, the molecule of life, Francis Crick and James Watson revolutionized biochemistry and won themselves a Nobel Prize. At the time, Watson was only twenty-four, a young scientist hungry to make his mark. His uncompromisingly honest account of the heady days of their thrilling sprint against other world-class researchers to solve one of science’s greatest mysteries gives a dazzlingly clear picture of a world of brilliant scientists with great gifts, very human ambitions, and bitter rivalries.

With humility unspoiled by false modesty, Watson relates his and Crick’s desperate efforts to beat Linus Pauling to the Holy Grail of life sciences, the identification of the basic building block of life. Never has a scientist been so truthful in capturing in words the flavor of his work.

The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 [Audiobook]

The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 [Audiobook]
The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 [Audiobook] by Christopher Clark, read by Derek Perkins
2014 | MP3@32 kbps + EPUB | 24 hrs 54 mins | 342.39MB

The Sleepwalkers is historian Christopher Clark's riveting account of the explosive beginnings of World War I. Drawing on new scholarship, Clark offers a fresh look at World War I, focusing not on the battles and atrocities of the war itself but on the complex events and relationships that led a group of well-meaning leaders into brutal conflict.

Clark traces the paths to war in a minute-by-minute, action-packed narrative that cuts between the key decision centers in Vienna, Berlin, St. Petersburg, Paris, London, and Belgrade, and he examines the decades of history that informed the events of 1914 and details the mutual misunderstandings and unintended signals that drove the crisis forward in a few short weeks.

Meticulously researched and masterfully written, The Sleepwalkers is a dramatic and authoritative chronicle of Europe's descent into a war that tore the world apart.

Napoleon's Hemorrhoids [Audiobook]

Napoleon's Hemorrhoids [Audiobook]
Napoleon's Hemorrhoids: And Other Small Events That Changed History [Audiobook] by Phil Mason, read by LJ Ganser
2013 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 8 hrs 13 mins | 226.31MB

Hilarious, fascinating, and a roller coaster of dizzying, historical what-ifs, Napoleon’s Hemorrhoids is a potpourri for serious historians and casual history buffs. In one of Phil Mason’s many revelations, you’ll learn that Communist jets were two minutes away from opening fire on American planes during the Cuban missile crisis, when they had to turn back as they were running out of fuel. You’ll discover that before the Battle of Waterloo, Napoleon’s painful hemorrhoids prevented him from mounting his horse to survey the battlefield. You’ll learn that an irate blacksmith threw his hammer at a fox and missed, hitting a rock and revealing the largest vein of silver ever discovered, thus changing the finances of Canada forever. Interestingly, Charlton Heston was cast as Moses in The Ten Commandments because his broken nose made him look like Michelangelo’s famous sculpture of Moses. Finally, no one knows Einstein’s last words. They were in German, a language his nurse did not speak.

A treasure trove filled with fascinating anecdotes about the tiny ripples that created big waves in history, Napoleon’s Hemorrhoids is much more than just a trivial fact book; it is an astonishing historical-fate book revealing how our most famous incidents, best-loved works of art, and most accepted historical outcomes are simply twists of fate.

Crimea: The Great Crimean War, 1854-1856 [EPUB]

Crimea: The Great Crimean War, 1854-1856 [EPUB]
Crimea: The Great Crimean War, 1854-1856 by Trevor Royle
2000 | EPUB | 2.34MB

The Crimean War is one of the most compelling subjects in British history. Everyone knows about the Charge of the Light Brigade and men like Raglan and Cardigan, have become household names. The story of Florence Nightingale, 'the Lady with the Lamp', and the heroic reporting of William Russell, THE TIMES' intrepid correspondent, and the sonorous names of the battles, are ingrained deep within the British military consciousness - Sebastopol, Inkerman, Balaclava and the Alma.

Trevor Royle demonstrates how the Crimean War was a watershed in world history: coming between the defeat of Napoleon in 1815 and the opening shots of the First World War in 1914 it pointed the way to what mass warfare would be like for soldiers in the twentieth century.

The Agrarian Sociology of Ancient Civilizations [EPUB]

The Agrarian Sociology of Ancient Civilizations [EPUB]
The Agrarian Sociology of Ancient Civilizations by Max Weber
2013 | EPUB | 2.32MB

Max Weber, widely recognized as the greatest of the founders of classical sociology, is often associated with the development of capitalism in Western Europe and the analysis of modernity. But he also had a profound scholarly interest in ancient societies and the Near East, and turned the youthful discipline of sociology to the study of these archaic cultures.

The Agrarian Sociology of Ancient Civilizations – Weber’s neglected masterpiece, first published in German in 1897 and reissued in 1909 – is a fascinating examination of the civilizations of Mesopotamia, Egypt, Hebrew society in Israel, the city-states of classical Greece, the Hellenistic world and, finally, Republican and Imperial Rome. The book is infused with the excitement attendant when new intellectual tools are brought to bear on familiar subjects. Throughout the work, Weber blends a description of socio-economic structures with an investigation into mechanisms and causes in the rise and decline of social systems. The volume ends with a magisterial explanatory essay on the underlying reasons for the fall of the Roman Empire.

Vietnam Wars 1945-1990 [EPUB]

Vietnam Wars 1945-1990 [EPUB]
Vietnam Wars 1945-1990 by Marilyn Young
2015 | EPUB | 6.67MB

In this dark account of the political and diplomatic sides of the Vietnam wars and the psychic aftermath, the author contends that the Indochina experience refuted (temporarily) the simplistic assumptions that in foreign policy America always "meant well" and that communism was always "bad." The epithets popularly employed to characterize the enemy in Vietnam--"indifferent to human life," "dishonest," "ruthless"--came to characterize our own actions as well.

From counterinsurgency expert Edward Lansdale's "cheerful brutalization of democratic values" to President Nixon's attempt to "make war look like peace," the moral breakdown is assessed here in disturbing detail. Young goes on to argue that more recent U.S. intervention in Lebanon, Libya, Grenada and Panama suggests that few lessons were learned in Vietnam--indeed, that the past decade has seen a dangerous resurgence of native faith in the benevolence of American foreign meddling. This, she maintains, goes hand in hand with a renewed commitment to use force in a global crusade against Third World revolutions and governments. Young, a history professor at New York University, paints a grim picture of our part in the Indochina war and its excoriating effects on the nation.