The God Impulse [EPUB]

The God Impulse [EPUB]
The God Impulse: Is Religion Hardwired into the Brain (A Neurologist Searches for the Spiritual Doorway in the Brain) by Kevin Nelson
2011 | EPUB | 0.5MB

Why do people have near-death experiences? Are there physical explanations for those out-of-body sensations and tunnels of light? And what about moments of spiritual ecstasy? If Buddha had been in an MRI machine and not under the Bodhi tree when he attained enlightenment, what would we have seen on the monitor? In The God Impulse, Kevin Nelson, a neurologist with three decades' experience examining the biology behind human spirituality, deconstructs the spiritual self, uncovering its origin in the most primitive areas of our brain.

Through his revolutionary studies on near-death experience, Nelson has discovered that spiritual experience is an incidental product of several different neurological processes acting independently. When we feel close to God or sense the presence of departed relatives, we may believe that we are standing at the border of this world and the next as individual, autonomous, rational creatures-touching God. The reality is far different: our brain function resembles a Cubist painting by Picasso or Braque, and the experiences we regard as the height of our humanity are in fact produced by primal reflexes.

The God Impulse takes us on a journey into what Nelson calls the borderlands of consciousness. The book offers the first comprehensive, empirically-tested, peer-reviewed examination of the reasons we are capable of near-death experience, out-of-body experience, and the mystical states produced by hallucinogenic drugs.

The Man Who Touched His Own Heart [EPUB]

The Man Who Touched His Own Heart [EPUB]
The Man Who Touched His Own Heart: True Tales of Science, Surgery, and Mystery by Rob Dunn
2015 | EPUB | 4.99MB

The secret history of our most vital organ--the human heart

The Man Who Touched His Own Heart tells the raucous, gory, mesmerizing story of the heart, from the first "explorers" who dug up cadavers and plumbed their hearts' chambers, through the first heart surgeries-which had to be completed in three minutes before death arrived-to heart transplants and the latest medical efforts to prolong our hearts' lives, almost defying nature in the process.

Thought of as the seat of our soul, then as a mysteriously animated object, the heart is still more a mystery than it is understood. Why do most animals only get one billion beats? (And how did modern humans get to over two billion-effectively letting us live out two lives?) Why are sufferers of gingivitis more likely to have heart attacks? Why do we often undergo expensive procedures when cheaper ones are just as effective? What do Da Vinci, Mary Shelley, and contemporary Egyptian archaeologists have in common? And what does it really feel like to touch your own heart, or to have someone else's beating inside your chest?

Rob Dunn's fascinating history of our hearts brings us deep inside the science, history, and stories of the four chambers we depend on most.

50 Math, Logic and Word Puzzles [EPUB]

50 Math, Logic and Word Puzzles [EPUB]
50 Math, Logic and Word Puzzles by Flemming Bermann
2013 | EPUB | 0.4MB

Have fun with the 1st volume of the ‘50 Puzzles’ series. In this book you will find 50 puzzles never published before in different categories: math, logical, word, geometry, code cracking, sticks and many others.

All puzzles are created by the author and are exclusive to the Kindle platform.

The majority of images are in black-and-white and optimized for e-readers. This provides crisp, clear images, which loads fast and is enjoyable to look at.

Whatever your puzzle solving level, you will be sure to find puzzles to match your ability.

The Great Book of Riddles [MOBI]

The Great Book of Riddles [MOBI]
The Great Book of Riddles: 250 Magnificent Riddles, Puzzles and Brain Teasers by Peter Keyne
2014 | MOBI | 1.44MB

This family-sized compendium presents 250 of the greatest riddles and puzzles of all time.

There are classical logic puzzles, lateral thinking puzzles, “who am I?” riddles, mathematical brain teasers, word ladders, ditloids, and a large selection of illustrated pen and paper, coins, cups, and toothpicks puzzles (please view the preview of this book for a full listing).

This is the first time a collection of such breadth has been compiled and formatted especially for Kindle devices. The puzzles have been carefully organized into 25 chapters, and each question is hyperlinked to its solution, to provide utmost ease of navigation. Alongside the world’s most famous riddles, are some lesser known gems, and some brand new puzzles, in print here for the first time.

Our aim was to create a definitive compendium of riddles and puzzles to bring enjoyment to people of all ages. We hope you will enjoy unraveling them as much as we enjoyed creating and editing them.

Darwin's Pictures: Views of Evolutionary Theory [EPUB]

Darwin's Pictures: Views of Evolutionary Theory [EPUB]
Darwin's Pictures: Views of Evolutionary Theory, 1837-1874 by Julia Voss
2010 | EPUB | 10.32MB

In this first-ever examination of Charles Darwin’s sketches, drawings, and illustrations, Julia Voss presents the history of evolutionary theory told in pictures. Darwin had a life-long interest in pictorial representations of nature, sketching out his evolutionary theory and related ideas for over forty years. Voss details the pictorial history of Darwin’s theory of evolution, starting with his notebook sketches of 1837 and ending with the illustrations in The Expression of Emotions in Man and Animals (1872). These images were profoundly significant for Darwin’s long-term argument for evolutionary theory; each characterizes a different aspect of his relationship with the visual information and constitutes what can be called an “icon” of evolution. Voss shows how Darwin “thought with his eyes” and how his pictorial representations and the development and popularization of the theory of evolution were vitally interconnected.

Voss explores four of Darwin’s images in depth, and weaves about them a story on the development and presentation of Darwin’s theory, in which she also addresses the history of Victorian illustration, the role of images in science, the technologies of production, and the relationship between specimen, words, and images.

The Churchill Factor [Audiobook]

The Churchill Factor [Audiobook]
The Churchill Factor: How One Man Changed History [Audiobook] by Boris Johnson, read by Simon Shepherd
2014 | MP3@48 kbps + EPUB | 11 hrs 11 mins | 237.45MB

From London's inimitable mayor, Boris Johnson, the story of how Churchill's eccentric genius shaped not only his world but our own.

On the 50th anniversary of Churchill's death, Boris Johnson celebrates the singular brilliance of one of the most important leaders of the 20th century. Taking on the myths and misconceptions along with the outsized reality, he portrays - with characteristic wit and passion - a man of contagious bravery, breathtaking eloquence, matchless strategizing, and deep humanity.

Fearless on the battlefield, Churchill had to be ordered by the king to stay out of action on D-Day; he pioneered aerial bombing and few could match his experience in organizing violence on a colossal scale, yet he hated war and scorned politicians who had not experienced its horrors. He was the most famous journalist of his time and perhaps the greatest orator of all time, despite a lisp and chronic depression he kept at bay by painting. His maneuvering positioned America for entry into World War II, even as it ushered in England's post-war decline. His open-mindedness made him a trailblazer in health care, education, and social welfare, though he remained incorrigibly politically incorrect. Most of all, he was a rebuttal to the idea that history is the story of vast and impersonal forces; he is proof that one person - intrepid, ingenious, determined - can make all the difference.

Culture Crash: The Killing of the Creative Class [EPUB]

Culture Crash: The Killing of the Creative Class [EPUB]
Culture Crash: The Killing of the Creative Class by Scott Timberg
2015 | EPUB | 0.4MB

Change is no stranger to us in the twenty-first century. We must constantly adjust to an evolving world, to transformation and innovation. But for many thousands of creative artists, a torrent of recent changes has made it all but impossible to earn a living. A persistent economic recession, social shifts, and technological change have combined to put our artists—from graphic designers to indie-rock musicians, from architects to booksellers—out of work. This important book looks deeply and broadly into the roots of the crisis of the creative class in America and tells us why it matters.

Scott Timberg considers the human cost as well as the unintended consequences of shuttered record stores, decimated newspapers, music piracy, and a general attitude of indifference. He identifies social tensions and contradictions—most concerning the artist's place in society—that have plunged the creative class into a fight for survival. Timberg shows how America's now-collapsing middlebrow culture—a culture once derided by intellectuals like Dwight Macdonald—appears, from today's vantage point, to have been at least a Silver Age. Timberg's reporting is essential reading for anyone who works in the world of culture, knows someone who does, or cares about the work creative artists produce.

Totalled: Salvaging the Future from the Wreckage of Capitalism [EPUB]

Totalled: Salvaging the Future from the Wreckage of Capitalism [EPUB]
Totalled: Salvaging the Future from the Wreckage of Capitalism by Colin Cremin
2015 | EPUB | 0.8MB

In this book, Colin Cremin tackles the overbearing truth that capitalism encompasses the totality of our societal relations, weaving deep into the fabric of all that it means to be human. He shows how it is a system that totalises and which has upended the modernity project by industrialised warfare, surveillance, commodification and control. With ever deepening crises and ecological catastrophes it threatens the total destruction of human civilisation. But in amongst this wreckage there are still functioning parts, machines to be salvaged through the collective force of the human imagination and the total mobilisation of the peoples of this earth. We must realise a different future to the apocalypticism forewarned by scientists, prescribed by economists, accommodated by politicians and made spectacle by the entertainment industry.

Totalled maps the deteriorating socio-economic, political and ecological conditions in which we live and, through our labours and consumption, seemingly have no choice other than to accelerate. The question for the book is how a utopian possibility discernable in the power of human creation can be realised when as a society we are in different ways materially, ideologically and libidinally bound to the capitalist machine of destruction. Totalled concludes with a politically and economically grounded set of propositions on how this might be achieved.

The Hundred-Year Marathon [EPUB]

The Hundred-Year Marathon [EPUB]
The Hundred-Year Marathon: China's Secret Strategy to Replace America as the Global Superpower by Michael Pillsbury
2015 | EPUB + MOBI | 0.4/0.6MB

One of the U.S. government’s leading China experts reveals the hidden strategy fueling that country’s rise – and how Americans have been seduced into helping China overtake us as the world’s leading superpower.

For more than forty years, the United States has played an indispensable role helping the Chinese government build a booming economy, develop its scientific and military capabilities, and take its place on the world stage, in the belief that China’s rise will bring us cooperation, diplomacy, and free trade. But what if the "China Dream" is to replace us, just as America replaced the British Empire, without firing a shot?

Based on interviews with Chinese defectors and newly declassified, previously undisclosed national security documents, The Hundred-Year Marathon reveals China’s secret strategy to supplant the United States as the world’s dominant power, and to do so by 2049, the one-hundredth anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic. Michael Pillsbury, a fluent Mandarin speaker who has served in senior national security positions in the U.S. government since the days of Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger, draws on his decades of contact with the "hawks" in China’s military and intelligence agencies and translates their documents, speeches, and books to show how the teachings of traditional Chinese statecraft underpin their actions. He offers an inside look at how the Chinese really view America and its leaders – as barbarians who will be the architects of their own demise.

Pillsbury also explains how the U.S. government has helped – sometimes unwittingly and sometimes deliberately – to make this "China Dream" come true, and he calls for the United States to implement a new, more competitive strategy toward China as it really is, and not as we might wish it to be. The Hundred-Year Marathon is a wake-up call as we face the greatest national security challenge of the twenty-first century.

Shanghai Homes: Palimpsests of Private Life [EPUB]

Shanghai Homes: Palimpsests of Private Life [EPUB]
Shanghai Homes: Palimpsests of Private Life by Jie Li
2014 | EPUB | 27.9MB

In the dazzling global metropolis of Shanghai, what has it meant to call this city home? In this account--part microhistory, part memoir--Jie Li salvages intimate recollections by successive generations of inhabitants of two vibrant, culturally mixed Shanghai alleyways from the Republican, Maoist, and post-Mao eras. Exploring three dimensions of private life--territories, artifacts, and gossip--Li re-creates the sounds, smells, look, and feel of home over a tumultuous century.

First built by British and Japanese companies in 1915 and 1927, the two homes at the center of this narrative were located in an industrial part of the former "International Settlement." Before their recent demolition, they were nestled in Shanghai's labyrinthine alleyways, which housed more than half of the city's population from the Sino-Japanese War to the Cultural Revolution. Through interviews with her own family members as well as their neighbors, classmates, and co-workers, Li weaves a complex social tapestry reflecting the lived experiences of ordinary people struggling to absorb and adapt to major historical change. These voices include workers, intellectuals, Communists, Nationalists, foreigners, compradors, wives, concubines, and children who all fought for a foothold and haven in this city, witnessing spectacles so full of farce and pathos they could only be whispered as secret histories.

The Tragedy of the European Union: Disintegration or Revival? [EPUB]

The Tragedy of the European Union: Disintegration or Revival? [EPUB]
The Tragedy of the European Union: Disintegration or Revival by George Soros
2014 | EPUB | 0.5MB

The European Union could soon be a thing of the past. Xenophobia is rampant and commonly reflected in elections across the continent. Great Britain may hold a referendum on whether to abandon the union altogether. Spurred by anti-EU sentiments due to the euro crisis, national interests conflict with a shared vision for the future of Europe. Is it too late to preserve the union that generated unprecedented peace for more than half a century?

This is no mere academic question with limited importance for America and the rest of the world. In the past decade, the EU has declined from a unified global power to a fractious confederation of states with staggering unemployment resentfully seeking relief from a reluctant Germany. If the EU collapses and the former member states are transformed again from partners into rivals, the US and the world will confront the serious economic and political consequences that follow.

In a series of revealing interviews conducted by Dr. Gregor Peter Schmitz, George Soros—a man of vast European experience whose personal past informs his present concerns—offers trenchant commentary and concise, prescriptive advice: The euro crisis was not an inevitable consequence of integration, but a result of avoidable mistakes in politics, economics, and finance; and excessive faith in the self-regulating financial markets that Soros calls market fundamentalism inspired flawed institutional structures that call out for reform. Despite the considerable perils of this period, George Soros maintains his faith in the European Union as a model of open society. This book is a testament to his vision for a peaceful and productive Europe.

Sociology: The Basics [EPUB]

Sociology: The Basics [EPUB]
Sociology: The Basics by Ken Plummer
2010 | EPUB | 0.7MB

A lively, accessible and comprehensive introduction to the diverse ways of thinking about social life, Sociology: The Basics examines:

  • the scope, history and purpose of sociology
  • ways of understanding 'the social'
  • the state of the world we live in today
  • suffering and social inequalities
  • key tools for researching and thinking about 'the social'
  • the impact of new technologies.

The reader is encouraged to think critically about the structures, meanings, histories and cultures found in the rapidly changing world we live in. With tasks to stimulate the sociological mind and suggestions for further reading both within the text and on an accompanying webpage, this book is essential reading for all those studying sociology, and those with an interest in how the modern world works.

Heaven On Earth: The Rise and Fall of Socialism [EPUB]

Heaven On Earth: The Rise and Fall of Socialism [EPUB]
Heaven On Earth: The Rise and Fall of Socialism by Joshua Muravchik
2003 | EPUB | 1.14MB

Socialism was man’s most ambitious attempt to supplant religion with a doctrine claiming to ground itself in “science.” Indeed, no religion ever spread so far so fast. Yet while socialism had established itself as a fact of life by the beginning of the 20th century, it did not create societies of abundance or give birth to “the New Man.” Each failure inspired new searches for the path to the promised land: revolution, communes, social democracy, Communism, Fascism, Third World socialism. None worked, and some exacted staggering human tolls. Then, after two hundred years of wishful thinking and fitful governance, socialism suddenly imploded in a fin du siecle drama of falling walls and collapsing regimes.

In Heaven on Earth, Joshua Muravchik traces this fiery trajectory through sketches of the thinkers and leaders who developed the theory, led it to power, and presided over its collapse. We see such dreamers and doers as the French revolutionary Gracchus Babeuf, whose “Conspiracy of Equals” were the first to try to outlaw private property; Robert Owen, who hoped to plant a model socialist utopia in the United States; Friedrich Engels, who created the cult of Karl Marx and “scientific” socialism; Benito Mussolini, self proclaimed socialist heretic and inventor of Fascism; Clement Attlee, who rejected the fanatics and set out to build socialism democratically in Britain; Julius Nyerere, who merged social democracy and communism in the hope of making Tanzania a model for the developing world; and Mikhail Gorbachev, Deng Xiaoping and Tony Blair, who became socialism’s inadvertent undertakers.

Muravchik’s accomplishment in Heaven on Earth is to tell a story filled with character and event while at the same time giving us an epic chronicle of a movement that tried to turn the world upside down—and for a time succeeded.

Concentration Camp Stutthof [EPUB]

Concentration Camp Stutthof [EPUB]
Concentration Camp Stutthof: Its History and Function in National Socialist Jewish Policy by Jürgen Graf, Carlo Mattogno
2015 | EPUB | 3.08MB

The National Socialist concentration camp of Stutthof, not far from Danzig (West Prussia), has never been the subject of scientific study by western historians. In Poland there exists quite an extensive body of literature on the subject, which must, however, be treated with caution, because it is heavily influenced by Soviet-Communist and Polish-nationalistic ideology. According to this literature, Stutthof became a ‘makeshift’ extermination camp within the framework of the execution of the so-called ‘Final Solution of the Jewish Question’ in 1944.

Jürgen Graf and Carlo Mattogno have subjected this view of Stutthof to critical examination based on Polish literature and documents located in Russian, Polish, and Dutch archives, paying particular attention to mass transports to and from Stutthof in 1944. This research led the authors to very definite conclusions as to the function of the camp, differing dramatically from those expressed in the standard literature: Not only do Graf and Mattogno prove that the Stutthof camp did not serve as a ‘makeshift’ extermination camp—the room claimed to have been used as a homicidal gas chamber was never anything but a delousing chamber. This book also sheds light on the question of what happened to some of the prisoners who were sent to Auschwitz but were never registered in that camp: after being much shuffled about and neglected, they ended up in Stutthof.

The present volume, now in its third edition, is a milestone of research, which no historian with any claim to seriousness can afford to ignore.

World War Two: A Short History [Audiobook]

World War Two: A Short History [Audiobook]
World War Two: A Short History [Audiobook] by Norman Stone, read by Derek Perkins
2013 | MP3@160 kbps + EPUB | 6 hrs 7 mins | 434.32MB

A pacy, compelling and penetrating account from Wolfson Prize-winning author Norman Stone, that shows World War Two in a fresh new light.

After the unprecedented destruction of the Great War, the world longed for a lasting peace. The victors, however, valued vengeance even more than stability and demanded a massive indemnity from Germany in order to keep it from rearming. The results, as eminent historian Norman Stone describes in this authoritative history, were disastrous.

In World War Two, Stone provides a remarkably concise account of the deadliest war of human history, showing how the conflict roared to life from the ashes of World War One. Adolf Hitler rode a tide of popular desperation and resentment to power in Germany, promptly making good on his promise to return the nation to its former economic and military strength. He bullied Europe into giving him his way, and in so doing backed the victors of the Great War into a corner.

Following the invasion of Poland in 1939, Britain and France declared war on Germany-a decision that, Stone argues, was utterly irrational. Yet Hitler had driven the world mad, and the rekindling of European hostilities soon grew to a conflagration that spread across the globe, fanned by political and racial ideologies more poisonous-and weaponry more destructive-than the world had ever seen. With commanding expertise, Stone leads listeners through the escalation, climax, and mournful denouement of this sprawling conflict.

World War Two is an invaluable contribution to our understanding of the twentieth century and its defining struggle.

Human Smoke: The Beginnings of World War II, the End of Civilization [EPUB]

Human Smoke: The Beginnings of World War II, the End of Civilization [EPUB]
Human Smoke: The Beginnings of World War II, the End of Civilization by Nicholson Baker
2008 | EPUB + MOBI | 0.4/0.7MB

Human Smoke delivers a closely textured, deeply moving indictment of the treasured myths that have romanticized much of the 1930s and '40s. Incorporating meticulous research and well-documented sources—including newspaper and magazine articles, radio speeches, memoirs, and diaries—the book juxtaposes hundreds of interrelated moments of decision, brutality, suffering, and mercy. Vivid glimpses of political leaders and their dissenters illuminate and examine the gradual, horrifying advance toward overt global war and Holocaust.

Praised by critics and readers alike for his exquisitely observant eye and deft, inimitable prose, Baker has assembled a narrative within Human Smoke that unfolds gracefully, tragically, and persuasively. This is an unforgettable book that makes a profound impact on our perceptions of historical events and mourns the unthinkable loss humanity has borne at its own hand.

The Diary and Letters of a World War I Fighter Pilot [EPUB]

The Diary and Letters of a World War I Fighter Pilot [EPUB]
The Diary and Letters of a World War I Fighter Pilot by Christopher Burgess
2015 | EPUB | 1.6MB

This is a first-hand account of the author’s grandfather, Guy Mainwaring Knocker and his experiences as a pilot in the R.F.C. in the First World War written as a series of letters and diary entries. He wrote letters virtually every day to his family, while he trained in England and was in service in France, and often illustrated them with little sketches. Guy was a gifted artist, particularly pencil and pen and ink, and also an excellent photographer. He flew with No 65 (Fighter) Squadron that was formed in June, 1916 as a fighter squadron, and flew to France in March 1917 in time to play a prominent part in the air operations during the Battles of Arras. In June 1917, the squadron moved to Calais for special patrol work in the Dover Straits area, to intercept enemy aircraft raiding England.

The World's War [Audiobook]

The World's War [Audiobook]
The World's War [Audiobook] by David Olusoga, read by Nigel Carrington
2014 | M4B@64 kbps | 17 hours | 486.96MB

A unique account of the millions of colonial troops who fought in the First World War

Every major battle fought on the Western Front, from the First Battle of Ypres to the Second Battle of the Marne, was fought by Allied armies that were multi-racial and multi-ethnic. Yet from the moment the guns fell silent the role of non-white soldiers was forgotten. The World's War brings to life the searing experiences of the hundreds of thousands of non-white troops whose bravery contributed to the final Allied victory.

World War One: A Short History [EPUB]

World War One: A Short History [EPUB]
World War One: A Short History by Norman Stone
2008 | EPUB | 3.23MB

The First World War was the overwhelming disaster from which everything else in the twentieth century stemmed. Fourteen million combatants died, a further twenty million were wounded, four empires were destroyed and even the victors’ empires were fatally damaged. The sheer complexity and scale of the war have encouraged historians to write books on a similar scale. But now Norman Stone, one of Britain’s greatest historians, has achieved the almost impossible task of writing a terse, brilliantly written, opinionated and witty short history of the conflict. In only 140 pages he distils a lifetime of teaching, arguing and thinking into what will be one of the most talked about history books of years to come.

God's Bankers: A History of Money and Power at the Vatican [EPUB]

God's Bankers: A History of Money and Power at the Vatican [EPUB]
God's Bankers: A History of Money and Power at the Vatican by Gerald Posner
2015 | EPUB | 5.41MB

A deeply reported, fast-paced exposé of the money and the cardinals-turned-financiers at the heart of the Vatican—the world’s biggest, most powerful religious institution—from an acclaimed journalist with “exhaustive research techniques” (The New York Times).

From a master chronicler of legal and financial misconduct, a magnificent investigation nine years in the making, this book traces the political intrigue and inner workings of the Catholic Church. Decidedly not about faith, belief in God, or religious doctrine, this book is about the church’s accumulation of wealth and its byzantine entanglements with financial markets across the world. Told through 200 years of prelates, bishops, cardinals, and the Popes who oversee it all, Gerald Posner uncovers an eyebrow-raising account of money and power in perhaps the most influential organization in the history of the world.

God’s Bankers has it all: a rare exposé and an astounding saga marked by poisoned business titans, murdered prosecutors, mysterious deaths of private investigators, and questionable suicides; a carnival of characters from Popes and cardinals, financiers and mobsters, kings and prime ministers; and a set of moral and political circumstances that clarify not only the church’s aims and ambitions, but reflect the larger dilemmas of the world’s more recent history. And Posner even looks to the future to surmise if Pope Francis can succeed where all his predecessors failed: to overcome the resistance to change in the Vatican’s Machiavellian inner court and to rein in the excesses of its seemingly uncontrollable financial quagmire. Part thriller, part financial tell-all, this book shows with extraordinary precision how the Vatican has evolved from a foundation of faith to a corporation of extreme wealth and power.

Utopia/Dystopia: Conditions of Historical Possibility [EPUB]

Utopia/Dystopia: Conditions of Historical Possibility [EPUB]
Utopia/Dystopia: Conditions of Historical Possibility edited by Michael D Gordin, Helen Tilley, Gyan Prakash
2010 | EPUB | 2.31MB

The concepts of utopia and dystopia have received much historical attention. Utopias have traditionally signified the ideal future: large-scale social, political, ethical, and religious spaces that have yet to be realized. Utopia/Dystopia offers a fresh approach to these ideas. Rather than locate utopias in grandiose programs of future totality, the book treats these concepts as historically grounded categories and examines how individuals and groups throughout time have interpreted utopian visions in their daily present, with an eye toward the future. From colonial and postcolonial Africa to pre-Marxist and Stalinist Eastern Europe, from the social life of fossil fuels to dreams of nuclear power, and from everyday politics in contemporary India to imagined architectures of postwar Britain, this interdisciplinary collection provides new understandings of the utopian/dystopian experience.

The essays look at such issues as imaginary utopian perspectives leading to the 1856-57 Xhosa Cattle Killing in South Africa, the functioning racist utopia behind the Rhodesian independence movement, the utopia of the peaceful atom and its global dissemination in the mid-1950s, the possibilities for an everyday utopia in modern cities, and how the Stalinist purges of the 1930s served as an extension of the utopian/dystopian relationship.

The contributors are Dipesh Chakrabarty, Igal Halfin, Fredric Jameson, John Krige, Timothy Mitchell, Aditya Nigam, David Pinder, Marci Shore, Jennifer Wenzel, and Luise White.

Ambition, A History: From Vice to Virtue [EPUB]

Ambition, A History: From Vice to Virtue [EPUB]
Ambition, A History: From Vice to Virtue by William Casey King
2013 | EPUB | 3.1MB

From rags to riches, log house to White House, enslaved to liberator, ghetto to CEO, ambition fuels the American Dream. Americans are driven by ambition. Yet at the time of the nation's founding, ambition was viewed as a dangerous vice, everything from "a canker on the soul" to the impetus for original sin. This engaging book explores ambition's surprising transformation, tracing attitudes from classical antiquity to early modern Europe to the New World and America's founding. From this broad historical perspective, William Casey King deepens our understanding of the American mythos and offers a striking reinterpretation of the introduction to the Declaration of Independence.

Through an innovative array of sources and authors—Aquinas, Dante, Machiavelli, the Geneva Bible, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Thomas Jefferson, and many others—King demonstrates that a transformed view of ambition became possible the moment Europe realized that Columbus had discovered not a new route but a new world. In addition the author argues that reconstituting ambition as a virtue was a necessary precondition of the American republic. The book suggests that even in the twenty-first century, ambition has never fully lost its ties to vice and continues to exhibit a dual nature, positive or negative depending upon the ends, the means, and the individual involved.

A Little History of the World [EPUB]

A Little History of the World [EPUB]
A Little History of the World: Illustrated Edition by E H Gombrich
2014 | EPUB | 24.67MB

E. H. Gombrich's Little History of the World, though written in 1935, has become one of the treasures of historical writing since its first publication in English in 2005. The Yale edition alone has now sold over half a million copies, and the book is available worldwide in almost thirty languages.

Gombrich was of course the best-known art historian of his time, and his text suggests illustrations on every page. This illustrated edition of the Little History brings together the pellucid humanity of his narrative with the images that may well have been in his mind's eye as he wrote the book. The two hundred illustrations—most of them in full color—are not simple embellishments, though they are beautiful. They emerge from the text, enrich the author's intention, and deepen the pleasure of reading this remarkable work.

For this edition the text is reset in a spacious format, flowing around illustrations that range from paintings to line drawings, emblems, motifs, and symbols. The book incorporates freshly drawn maps, a revised preface, and a new index.

The Traveling Artist in the Italian Renaissance [EPUB]

The Traveling Artist in the Italian Renaissance [EPUB]
The Traveling Artist in the Italian Renaissance: Geography, Mobility, and Style by David Young Kim
2014 | EPUB | 63.22MB

This important and innovative book examines artists’ mobility as a critical aspect of Italian Renaissance art. It is well known that many eminent artists such as Cimabue, Giotto, Donatello, Lotto, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Titian traveled. This book is the first to consider the sixteenth-century literary descriptions of their journeys in relation to the larger Renaissance discourse concerning mobility, geography, the act of creation, and selfhood.

David Young Kim carefully explores relevant themes in Giorgio Vasari’s monumental Lives of the Artists, in particular how style was understood to register an artist’s encounter with place. Through new readings of critical ideas, long-standing regional prejudices, and entire biographies, The Traveling Artist in the Italian Renaissance provides a groundbreaking case for the significance of mobility in the interpretation of art and the wider discipline of art history.

Other 1492: Ferdinand, Isabella, and the Making of an Empire [TTC Video]

Other 1492: Ferdinand, Isabella, and the Making of an Empire [TTC Video]
Other 1492: Ferdinand, Isabella, and the Making of an Empire [TTC Video] by Teofilo F Ruiz
Course No 899 | MP4, AVC, 624x484 | AAC, 55 kbps, 2 Ch | 12x30 mins | 4.93GB

In 1492, there was no country called Spain and no language called Spanish. The biggest event of the year, in the region that would become Spain, was the surrender of the last Muslim stronghold, Granada. The Edict of Expulsion gave Jews three months to either convert to Christianity or leave the Kingdom of Castile and the Crown of Aragon.

In other words, there is a different 1492, than the one most of us know, one that is more complete and more complex.

This 12-lecture course uses 1492 as a focal point to follow events that enabled Spain to become a country and then an empire. It examines centuries of developments that led up to that pivotal date in Spanish history, and analyzes the consequences of the events that took place in 1492 for both Spain and the New World.

A Year that Symbolizes Spanish History

Presented by Professor Teofilo F. Ruiz, a foremost authority on Spanish history and an award-winning teacher and author, this course paints a portrait of 1492 as the centerpiece of the transformation of Spanish society by tying together several key themes:

  • The rise of Castile as the strongest of the Spanish realms, and the reforms of Ferdinand and Isabella. Catholic monarchs built a popular and stable monarchy in Castile—through such measures as new taxes, control of the military, and reform of the church—that enabled Spain to emerge as the most powerful nation in Europe.
  • The end of pluralism. For centuries, the Iberian Peninsula had been a multicultural mix of Christians, Muslims, and Jews. Beginning with the Christian victory over Muslim forces at Las Navas de Tolosa in 1212, and continuing with developments such as the conquest of Granada and the Edict of Expulsion, both in 1492, Muslims and Jews were either forced to convert to Christianity or sent into exile.
  • The world of Christopher Columbus. Developments such as the recovery of classical knowledge of geography and astronomy, and new knowledge of maps and the use of the compass and astrolabe, enabled Columbus to set sail confidently across the Ocean Sea (Atlantic). Columbus's discoveries gave Spain a foothold in the Caribbean that it used to test colonial institutions, and to explore and conquer Mexico and Central America.

The Experience of Muslims, Jews, and Native Americans: 1492 from "Below"

Today, we associate 1492 with a sense of wonder and discovery. But a major theme of this course is to look at history not only from "above"—the perspective of a victorious Castilian and Christian society—but from below, from the view of the defeated, the outsiders, those seen as "other." For many people of the time, 1492 inspired only despair and terror.

Professor Ruiz conveys a palpable sense of the experiences of Muslims and Jews as they faced the choice of renouncing their religious beliefs or leaving lands that they had called home for centuries. This discussion touches on topics such as the Muslim sense that their civilization was ultimately doomed after the defeat by Christian forces at Toledo in 1085, and the confusion felt by Conversos—Jewish converts to Christianity—who tried to mix elements of Judaism with their new religion and became prime targets of the Inquisition.

You will see how Castilian attitudes toward others were exported to the New World. Spanish accounts of native peoples were ambivalent. They praised natives' simplicity and seeming closeness to God, but labeled them with the same stereotypes that had been applied to Muslims and Jews, and questioned whether they were truly human.

Throughout, these lectures are an opportunity to understand the events of 1492 as they were perceived by people of the time, and to correct misconceptions that linger today. For example, you will learn why Columbus's voyages were not seen as the greatest of his time, that he and his fellow Europeans did not believe the Earth was flat, and that his first voyage did not produce doubts and fear among those who sailed with him.

This 1492, the "other" 1492, will greatly expand and often revise your understanding of one of history's most crucial dates.

Lectures:

  1. Europe and the New World in 1492
  2. Reconquest, Pilgrimage, Crusade, Repopulation
  3. The Transformation of Values
  4. An Age of Crisis
  5. Isabella and Ferdinand—An Age of Reform
  6. Iberian Culture in the Fifteenth Century
  7. The Conquest of Granada—Muslim Life in Iberia
  8. The Edict of Expulsion—Jewish Life in Iberia
  9. Jews, Conversos, and the Inquisition
  10. The World of Christopher Columbus
  11. The Shock of the New
  12. Spain and Its Empire—The Aftermath of 1492