Serpentine: The True Story of a Serial Killer's Reign of Terror from Europe to South Asia [EPUB]

Serpentine: The True Story of a Serial Killer's Reign of Terror from Europe to South Asia [EPUB]
Serpentine: The True Story of a Serial Killer's Reign of Terror from Europe to South Asia by Thomas Thompson
2016 | EPUB | 2.14MB

New York Times Bestseller: The nightmare odyssey of a charismatic serial killer and a trail of terror stretching halfway around the world.

There was no pattern to the murders, no common thread other than the fact that the victims were all vacationers, robbed of their possessions and slain in seemingly random crimes. Authorities across three continents and a dozen nations had no idea they were all looking for same man: Charles Sobhraj, aka “The Serpent.”

A handsome Frenchman of Vietnamese and Indian origin, Sobhraj targeted backpackers on the “hippie trail” between Europe and South Asia. A master of deception, he used his powerful intellect and considerable sex appeal to lure naïve travelers into a life of crime. When they threatened to turn on him, Sobhraj murdered his acolytes in cold blood. Between late 1975 and early 1976, a dozen corpses were found everywhere from the boulevards of Paris to the slopes of the Himalayas to the back alleys of Bangkok and Hong Kong. Some police experts believe the true number of Sobhraj’s victims may be more than twice that amount.

Serpentine is the “grotesque, baffling, and hypnotic” true story of one of the most bizarre killing sprees in modern history (San Francisco Chronicle). Edgar Award–winning author Thomas Thompson’s mesmerizing portrait of a notorious sociopath and his helpless prey “unravels like fiction, but afterwards haunts the reader like the document it is” (The Plain Dealer, Cleveland).

Nature's Remedies: An Illustrated Guide to Healing Herbs [EPUB]

Nature's Remedies: An Illustrated Guide to Healing Herbs [EPUB]
Nature's Remedies: An Illustrated Guide to Healing Herbs by Jean Willoughby
2016 | EPUB | 7.3MB

Throughout history, herbs have been used medicinally to promote healing and vitality. Think chamomile for enhanced sleep, milk thistle for detox, and elderberry for an immunity boost. Today, herbal remedies are more popular than ever, celebrated not just for their effectiveness but also as all-natural and affordable.

This beginner-friendly guide welcomes a new generation to the trusted tradition. Engagingly written for a wide audience of homemakers, nature lovers, and fans of organic living, it presents richly detailed profiles of more than 65 herbs, including historical overviews, usages, how-to tips, and beautiful watercolor illustrations.

Rip the Resume: Job Search & Interview Power Prep [EPUB]

Rip the Resume: Job Search & Interview Power Prep [EPUB]
Rip the Resume: Job Search & Interview Power Prep by Torin Ellis
2016 | EPUB | 5.36MB

Infused with real-life examples, self-analysis exercises, and advice from an industry professional, Rip the Resume is more than a "how to write a better resume" book; it's a proven system designed to challenge job seekers to take complete control and responsibility during a job search. Follow a ground-breaking roadmap on your journey to becoming the candidate that employers are seeking-whether you are a millennial looking to launch an exciting and fulfilling career or an experienced individual exploring greater career opportunities.

Rip the Resume provides the tools you need to transform yourself into the candidate that employers are searching for:

  • Cutting-edge guidance for job seekers in any field
  • Vital resume deconstruction techniques to highlight important areas and downplay others to render a stronger document
  • Winning conversation strategies to make a lasting impression during the interview
  • Practical advice for using social media wisely, both in the job search and in building your personal brand.

Rip the Resume is based on best practices and concepts that strengthen ANY job search.

Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America [EPUB]

Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America [EPUB]
Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson
2017 | EPUB | 1.11MB

Short, emotional, literary, powerful―Tears We Cannot Stop is the book that all Americans who care about the current and long-burning crisis in race relations will want to read.

As the country grapples with racist division at a level not seen since the 1960s, one man's voice soars above the rest with conviction and compassion. In his 2016 New York Times op-ed piece "Death in Black and White," Michael Eric Dyson moved a nation. Now he continues to speak out in Tears We Cannot Stop―a provocative and deeply personal call for change. Dyson argues that if we are to make real racial progress we must face difficult truths, including being honest about how black grievance has been ignored, dismissed, or discounted.

"The time is at hand for reckoning with the past, recognizing the truth of the present, and moving together to redeem the nation for our future. If we don't act now, if you don't address race immediately, there very well may be no future."

Mapping the Nation [EPUB]

Mapping the Nation [EPUB]
Mapping the Nation edited by Gopal Balakrishnan
2012 | EPUB | 2.0MB

Part of Verso's classic Mapping series that collects the most important writings on key topics in a changing world.

In nearly two decades since Samuel P. Huntington proposed his influential and troubling ‘clash of civilizations’ thesis, nationalism has only continued to puzzle and frustrate commentators, policy analysts and political theorists. No consensus exists concerning its identity, genesis or future. Are we reverting to the petty nationalisms of the nineteenth century or evolving into a globalized, supranational world? Has the nation-state outlived its usefulness and exhausted its progressive and emancipatory role?

Opening with powerful statements by Lord Acton and Otto Bauer – the classic liberal and socialist positions, respectively – Mapping the Nation presents a wealth of thought on this issue: the debate between Ernest Gellner and Miroslav Hroch; Gopal Balakrishnan’s critique of Benedict Anderson’s seminal Imagined Communities; Partha Chatterjee on the limitations of the Enlightenment approach to nationhood; and contributions from Michael Mann, Eric Hobsbawm, Tom Nairn, and Jürgen Habermas.

Essential Study Skills: The Complete Guide to Success at University [EPUB]

Essential Study Skills: The Complete Guide to Success at University [EPUB]
Essential Study Skills: The Complete Guide to Success at University by Tom Burns, Sandra Sinfield
2016 | EPUB | 3.06MB

Do you want to do better at university?

Packed with study tips and handy activities, Essential Study Skills is a proven guide that shows you step-by-step how to study effectively and make the best of your time at university - whatever level you're at. Whether you are going to university straight from school, a mature student, or an overseas student studying in the UK for the first time, you'll find out how to:

  • Sail through those tricky first weeks
  • Get the most out of lectures by understanding how you learn
  • Learn techniques for academic writing and research
  • Stay cool and cope with stress
  • Pass exams with flying colours
  • Plan your career after graduation.

Don't miss in this edition...

  • Even more tips and advice on learning methods, online learning and developing job skills - ensuring success throughout your course
  • Additional case studies and student tips to help you apply the skills you need
  • A companion website packed with toolkits and resources, to help you study smarter.

Amazing Stories of the Space Age [EPUB]

Amazing Stories of the Space Age [EPUB]
Amazing Stories of the Space Age: True Tales of Nazis in Orbit, Soldiers on the Moon, Orphaned Martian Robots, and Other Fascinating Accounts from the Annals of Spaceflight by Rod Pyle
2016 | EPUB | 16.26MB

Award-winning science writer and documentarian Rod Pyle presents an insider's perspective on the most unusual and bizarre space missions ever devised inside and outside of NASA. The incredible projects described here were not merely flights of fancy dreamed up by space enthusiasts, but actual missions planned by leading aeronautical engineers. Some were designed but not built; others were built but not flown; and a few were flown to failure but little reported:

A giant rocket that would use atomic bombs as propulsion (never mind the fallout), military bases on the moon that could target enemies on earth with nuclear weapons, a scheme to spray-paint the lenses of Soviet spy satellites in space, the rushed Soyuz 1 spacecraft that ended with the death of its pilot, the near-disaster of the Apollo 11 moon landing, the mysterious Russian space shuttle that flew only once and was then scrapped--these are just some of the unbelievable tales that Pyle has found in once top-secret documents as well as accounts that were simply lost for many decades.

These stories, complimented by many rarely-seen photos and illustrations, tell of a time when nothing was too off-the-wall to be taken seriously, and the race to the moon and the threat from the Soviet Union trumped all other considerations. Readers will be fascinated, amused, and sometimes chilled.

The Land of the Pharaohs [EPUB]

The Land of the Pharaohs [EPUB]
The Land of the Pharaohs by Leonard Cottrell
2017 | EPUB | 18.42MB

More than 3,000 years ago, a young man of seventeen named Tutankhamen became pharaoh of Egypt. His reign came toward the end of a vital period in Egypt's history when Thebes was the wealthiest and most splendid city in the world. Great temples soared into the sky, and in the temple workshops, hundreds of craftsmen labored to turn the riches of Egypt into magnificent garments, furniture and houses, ornaments, and weapons for all their heavenly gods and for their earthly god, the pharaoh.

In 1922, Howard Carter, after twenty years of searching, unearthed Tutankhamen's tomb. In it were the glorious artifacts that had been made for him and that he would need in the afterlife.

In this book, award-winning historian Leonard Cottrell vividly recreates Carter's discovery of the treasures that have yielded invaluable knowledge about the lives of the pharaohs as well as ordinary Egyptians.

The Vegetarian Athlete's Cookbook: More Than 100 Delicious Recipes for Active Living [EPUB]

The Vegetarian Athlete's Cookbook: More Than 100 Delicious Recipes for Active Living [EPUB]
The Vegetarian Athlete's Cookbook: More Than 100 Delicious Recipes for Active Living by Anita Bean
2016 | EPUB | 54.5MB

Written by bestselling author and nutritionist Anita Bean, packed with 100 delicious, easy to prepare recipes. and featuring attractive food photography, this book is for anyone who works out regularly and is looking to exclude meat from their diet.

The way we eat is changing. More and more of us are opting to eat less meat. And this includes people interested in sport - either vegetarians, or those of us simply looking to cut down on our meat intake.

Eating well to support a training regime presents its own challenges Â? but you can eat healthily and reach your sporting potential without eating meat. This book shows you how to achieve your goals.

Many athletes interested in adopting a meat free diet are worried about not getting the right nutrients to build muscle or perform well, and don't know exactly what they should be eating in place of meat. Read this book to discover over 100 fast, healthy, tasty vegetarian and vegan recipes for breakfast, main meals, desserts, snacks and shakes - and all featuring nutritional analysis.

Reading Capital: The Complete Edition [EPUB]

Reading Capital: The Complete Edition [EPUB]
Reading Capital: The Complete Edition by Louis Althusser, Etienne Balibar, Roger Establet, Jacques Ranciere, Pierre Macherey
2016 | EPUB | 1.1MB

A classic work of Marxist analysis, available unabridged for the first time

Originally published in 1965, Reading Capital is a landmark of French thought and radical theory, reconstructing Western Marxism from its foundations. Louis Althusser, the French Marxist philosopher, maintained that Marx’s project could only be revived if its scientific and revolutionary novelty was thoroughly divested of all traces of humanism, idealism, Hegelianism and historicism. In order to complete this critical rereading, Althusser and his students at the École normale supérieure ran a seminar on Capital, re-examining its arguments, strengths and weaknesses in detail, and it was out of those discussions that this book was born.

Previously only available in English in highly abridged form, this edition, appearing fifty years after its original publication in France, restores chapters by Roger Establet, Pierre Macherey and Jacques Rancière. It includes a major new introduction by Étienne Balibar.

The One Percenter Code: How to Be an Outlaw in a World Gone Soft [EPUB]

The One Percenter Code: How to Be an Outlaw in a World Gone Soft [EPUB]
The One Percenter Code: How to Be an Outlaw in a World Gone Soft by Dave Nichols
2012 | EPUB | 51.79MB

Motorcycling with a gang of outlaws is more than an alter ego or a hobby--it's a way of life, and it comes with a code.

In The One Percenter Code, best-selling Motorbooks author and editor of Easyriders magazine Dave Nichols picks up where he left off in One Percenter: The Legend of the Outlaw Biker. Nichols takes readers inside the world of outlaw motorcycle clubs and pulls back the secretive curtain on the biker lifestyle. He explores the concept of brotherhood, ultimately arriving at a new definition of family and community in the process. Being a member of a one percenter motorcycle club requires extreme discipline; in this book, Nichols shows us what that life offers in return.

Nichols delves into the one percenter code of conduct and honor and finds something that is sorely lacking in modern society. He shows us how we can apply those values in our own lives. The world of the outlaw biker has its own rough-hewn rules of order, and The One Percenter Code acts as a guidebook to that truth-, honor-, and brotherhood-based world.

Essentials of Economics, 7th Edition [PDF]

Essentials of Economics, 7th Edition [PDF]
Essentials of Economics, 7th Edition by John Sloman, Dean Garratt
2016 | PDF | 16.98MB

The market-leading concise text in introductory economics

Want to see economics in action? Visit the Sloman Economics News Site for a blog that’s updated several times a week with current affairs and topical stories all linked to your textbook so you can explore the background to the issues more deeply.

This new edition of the market-leading Essentials of Economics has been updated with the most recent data and coverage of economic issues as the world tries to recover from global financial turmoil and looks at explanations of how consumers and firms really behave. Its classic features and clear and engaging writing style is complemented by strong theoretical coverage and a wealth of pedagogical features to support learning.

Paleo Girl: Take a Leap. Empower Yourself. Be Awesome! [EPUB]

Paleo Girl: Take a Leap. Empower Yourself. Be Awesome! [EPUB]
Paleo Girl: Take a Leap, Empower Yourself, Be Awesome by Leslie Klenke
2014 | EPUB | 23.41MB

Let’s drop the diet gossip...and go back to the beginning.

Has a friend ever told you that you’re only supposed to eat 1,200 calories per day? Did you once read that your favorite celeb got killer abs from doing hours of cardio? Have you heard that eating fat will make you fat? Well, I’ll let you in on a little secret: those ideas are complete nonsense!

If you want to get in great shape, have flawless skin, and radiate genuine happiness, you need to go beyond outrageous magazine headlines and truly understand the correct approach to eating, exercising, sleeping, and managing the hectic pace of modern life. Paleo Girl will help you transform your health―the right way―by adapting the lifestyle behaviors of our strong, smart, and healthy hunter-gatherer ancestors.

Paleo Girl features an easy to follow Primal fitness guide; advice on getting ample sun, sleep, and play; tips for navigating physical maturation; pointers to amp up your motivation; and teen-friendly DIY recipes and beauty products!

Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason [Audiobook]

Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason [Audiobook]
Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason [Audiobook] by Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason, read by Dave Gillies
2016 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 10 hrs 36 mins | 291.82MB

In this classic account of madness, Michel Foucault shows once and for all why he is one of the most distinguished European philosophers since the end of World War II. Madness and Civilization, Foucault's first book and his finest accomplishment, will change the way in which you think about society. Evoking shock, pity, and fascination, it might also make you question the way you think about yourself.

The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction [TTC Video]

The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction [TTC Video]
The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction [TTC Video] by David Schmid
Course No 2442 | MP4, AVC, 856x480 | AAC, 192 kbps, 2 Ch | 36x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 11.38GB

On a dark, shadowy, cobblestone pavement in Victorian England, a pipe-smoking genius works with Scotland Yard to make meticulous observations and apply algorithm-like calculations that unravel impossible mysteries. In an internet café in Sweden, a chain-smoking computer hacker, working alone and outside the lines of legal constraints, creates actual algorithms that help her to decipher unfathomable puzzles. At first glance, it might seem like a long and winding road from Sherlock Holmes to Lisbeth Salander, but peer deeper into the captivating genre of mystery and suspense and you’ll find that different characters, eras, and locations often share familiar traits.

Great mystery and suspense writers have created some of the most unforgettable stories in all of literature. Even readers who don’t consider themselves fans of this intriguing genre are familiar with names such as Hercule Poirot, Sam Spade, Hannibal Lecter, and Robert Langdon, and understand the deep and lasting impact this writing has had on literature as a whole. An utterly captivating and compelling genre, mystery and suspense has leapt off the pages of the old dime store paperbacks, magazines, and comic books onto big screens, small screens, radio serials, podcasts, websites, and more. You’ll find elements, characters, and references permeating popular culture and news reports worldwide, and bleeding into other literary genres such as romance, political thrillers, sports stories, and even biographies. Nearly 200 years old, the genre of mystery and suspense literature is only growing more popular.

How did it become so prevalent? Why is mystery and suspense a go-to genre for so many readers around the world? What makes the dark and sometimes grisly themes appealing? In the 24 lectures of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction, Professor David Schmid of the University at Buffalo examines these questions, as he guides you through an examination the many different varieties of the genre, including:

  • classic whodunits
  • hard-boiled crime fiction
  • historical mysteries
  • courtroom dramas
  • true crime narratives
  • espionage fiction
  • and many more

In doing so, you’ll travel the road of mystery and suspense backward and forward in time, around the world, and alongside some of the most amazing minds in literature. You’ll investigate the works of influential authors such as Edgar Allan Poe, Agatha Christie, Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Thomas Harris, Walter Mosley, and more. You’ll see how the genre has been subverted and revitalized by contemporary writers, how it has affected and been affected by worldwide social and cultural transformations, and how the modern trend of “mash-up” literature (such as Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) had roots in very early mystery fiction. And by ripping stories from the headlines of real-life psychopaths and serial killers, you’ll see how the genre has—and still does—blur the line between reality and fiction. Most importantly, with the aid of this course, you’ll uncover nuances and themes you’ve probably never considered, no matter how familiar you are with these great works.

It’s Elementary: Examining the Elements of Mystery and Suspense

One of the most captivating components of this course is how Professor Schmid—both an avid fan of mystery and suspense and a scholar of the genre— surveys the same works through many lenses, giving you a different perspective each time. With Professor Schmid as your guide, you’ll examine the use and many variations of characters such as the detective, the criminal, the sidekick, the private eye, the police officer, and the femme fatale, as well as how the interconnections between these character types both define and defy their genres.or example, the relationship between the detective and police or the juxtaposition of criminal and private eye can help delineate subgenres within mystery and suspense fiction.

Professor Schmid considers the ways certain works might utilize clues, solutions, poetic justice, and violence, taking you through centuries of history and various sorts of suspense fiction to pinpoint specific examples. As authors experimented with the form over time, you’ll learn how books with ambiguous or unsolved conclusions became gradually more accepted into the mainstream, reflecting a change in the audience who once saw open-ended conclusions as simply frustrating or unsettling.

He also explores locations and the use of space to set the scene, comparing the claustrophobic panic evoked in the locked-room mysteries of Victorian England, when the killer was hidden in plain sight among the characters, to the open-ended suspicion when anything is possible in the dark back-alleys of noir. In this way, he invites you to reevaluate and reconsider a story you thought you were familiar with.

The Changing Faces of Detectives

The range of works that fall under the scope of Professor Schmid’s course will surprise and delight, as you are introduced to books by many international writers representing diverse racial and social groups. One of the keys to the success of this genre is its unique capacity for embracing real-world social changes while still remaining true to its defining features.

Mystery and suspense fiction is historically known for featuring male, Caucasian characters in the most prominent roles – as both protagonists and antagonists. However, you may be surprised to know that it is increasingly one of the most diversely written genres, with contributions from writers of many races and ethnicities worldwide being embraced. The genre naturally lends itself to illuminating pervasive issues like prejudice and bigotry, becoming a powerful outlet for writers to explore new perspectives.

Throughout the course, Professor Schmid devotes coverage to women, LGBTQ, Latin, Black, and Native American writers and characters, exploring how the context of the setting, the historical injustices, and the unique situations that come with these perspectives forced the classic elements of traditional mysteries to adapt and evolve. He will take you around the world with lectures focused on the influx of mysteries from Europe, Japan, Africa, and Latin America. He also devotes an entire lecture just to Nordic Noir: a distinctive subgenre of crime fiction authored by writers living in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, and Finland. Even if you are a mystery aficionado, Professor Schmid will likely introduce you to new names and series that you were not familiar with.

The author of Natural Born Celebrities: Serial Killers in American Culture; coauthor of Zombie Talk: Culture, History, Politics; editor of Violence in American Popular Culture; and coeditor of Globalization and the State in Contemporary Crime Fiction: A World of Crime, Professor Schmid is an expert on the genre, as well as a passionate and lively leader for this survey of a truly fascinating category of fiction. He has designed a course that takes a soup-to-nuts view of mystery and suspense books. Given the vast number of authors, books, time-periods, countries, and subgenres covered in this course, you simply can’t find a more comprehensive view. Fans of suspense will be delighted by the breadth and depth of information presented, guaranteed to uncover gems they had not yet discovered. But anyone, whether they are admirers of mystery on radio and film, or simply fans of literature, history, or pop culture, will find something to enlighten and entertain in this study of a genre with such tremendous impact.

Dive deeper into this genre than ever before with The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction, investigating multiple angles and getting a truly multifaceted picture of a fascinating literary subject.

The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction [TTC Video]

Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London [TTC Video]

Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London [TTC Video]
Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London [TTC Video] by Catherine B Scallen
Course No 7544 | AVI, XviD, 640x480 | MP3, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 4.26GB

Of all the world's great art museums, the National Gallery, London is the only place where you can truly grasp the breathtaking scope of European painting between 1200 and 1900. Established in 1824, the National Gallery was commissioned as the people's museum—a cultural institution meant to reflect the artistic legacy both of Great Britain and of the European continent. Inside its halls are more than 2,500 European paintings by some of Western civilization's greatest masters, including Titian, Rubens, and Rembrandt.

Today, the National Gallery is one of the top five tourist attractions in the United Kingdom. Each year, more than 5 million people explore the gallery's impressive collections, including its renowned and respected holdings in Italian Renaissance art and 17th-century Dutch and Flemish painting. To browse through the hallways and wings of the National Gallery is to witness the powerful evolution both of European painting and the European history that it represents.

Now you can take a virtual tour of this world-class collection through Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London. In 24 fascinating lectures, Professor Catherine B. Scallen, a noted art scholar at Case Western Reserve University, offers a memorable introduction to this remarkable artistic institution and its rich collection of masterworks.

But this is more than just a gallery tour. This course also offers a breathtaking and comprehensive overview of the history of European painting. The National Gallery holds one of the finest collections of European painting from the late medieval period to the beginning of the 20th century. Raphael and Titian, Rembrandt and Rubens, Poussin and Claude, Velazquez and Goya, Gainsborough and Turner—these are just a few of the great masters whose works are represented in the National Gallery's outstanding collection.

Britain's National Treasure

Your tour begins with an introduction that highlights the gallery's unique history, cultural mission, and aesthetic focus. Unlike many national art collections, which developed according to the whims of the ruling monarch, the National Gallery was established and planned with a clear strategy: to amass a sumptuous collection of art that celebrates the zenith of achievement in European painting.

In the first lecture, you gain an appreciation for the careful forethought and commitment to public art that has informed the development of this exceptional collection and has preserved it as a national treasure for the British people.

You hear, for example, the story of how, during World War II, the entire collection was transported to Wales to ensure its safety. Between 1939 and 1946, a single painting from the collection was returned to London for display each month as a patriotic reminder of the nation's great cultural heritage.

Professor Scallen uses the special access she was given to the gallery to guide you through the physical layout of this grand institution, including an exclusive peek into its many supporting departments, such as these:

  • The Framing Department, where experts choose antique frames to accent these masterpieces
  • The Scientific Department, where scientists study pigments and other media used by the masters
  • The Conservation Department, where the collection's paintings undergo routine cleaning and repair

700 Years of European Masterpieces

Because of its history and mission, the National Gallery is able to offer something truly unique: a collection of paintings that represents the "best of the best" of European art. To walk its galleries is to sample nearly seven centuries of famed masterworks and lesser-known but equally beautiful treasures.

Here are just a few of the works Professor Scallen has selected for your consideration:

  • Leonardo da Vinci's full-scale preparatory drawing of Virgin and Child with Saint Anne and Saint John the Baptist, the only such preparatory drawing by Leonardo to survive
  • Hans Holbein's The Ambassadors, a masterpiece that juxtaposes a vision of Renaissance achievement with a distorted image of a skull—a reminder of the fleeting nature of worldly accomplishments
  • Ambrosius Bosschaert the Elder's Flowers in a Vase, in which the artist brings together flowers that bloom in different seasons in an idealized vision of floral splendor
  • A remarkable comparison of self-portraits of Rembrandt in youth and old age—an exploration of the trajectory of the master's growth as an artist and as a human being
  • Van Gogh's A Wheatfield, with Cypresses, painted during his stay in a mental institution, in which he used the flow of paint and pattern to capture the sense of nature as well as his own response to it

View These Masterworks from All Angles

As you encounter each of these great paintings, you gain an appreciation not only for this collection but also for the art of painting itself through fascinating facts and anecdotes:

  • A description of standard techniques such as undermodelling—the underlying layer of paint used by medieval artists to provide a unifying tone and define shadows
  • An analysis of a wide variety of painting styles, such as Leonardo's use of sfumato ("smoky" blended edges); Titian's use of his fingers to blend paint; and Velázquez's heavily textured use of impasto (small raised areas of paint)
  • An explanation of the painters' materials, such as the difference between oil and tempera paints, and the lavish use of ultramarine, an expensive pigment made with lapis lazuli
  • The use of cutting-edge technology by modern art historians to shed light on the artistic process, as seen in Raphael's Madonna and Child with the Infant Baptist (studied with infrared reflectography) and Titian's Noli Me Tangere (analyzed using x-radiography)

Professor Scallen also tells stories of the artists' lives and times to broaden your understanding of the place of art in history. For example, you learn how the dreaded Black Death suppressed artistic development during the Middle Ages; how the iconoclasm of Calvinism helped create a new market for painting; and how Degas' declining eyesight may have contributed to his signature style.

The Finest of European Painting—in One Museum

Whether you're planning a trip to London or simply want to enjoy the best of European painting, Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London offers a breathtaking introduction to this institution and its many treasures.

And, as you find, Professor Scallen is the perfect guide. Listening to her explicate these great works is like having a very smart friend, who also happens to be an expert in art, take you on a stroll through the gallery. Deeply learned, passionate about her subject, she has a rare gift for communicating the power of these great works, even if this is your first foray into the world of European painting. And if you already know and love these masterworks, Professor Scallen will surprise you with unexpected insights and keen observations that will help you see them with new eyes.

Join Professor Scallen and see why the National Gallery, London is not only the pride of Great Britain, it's a treasure trove to be savored by anyone who appreciates fine art.

Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London [TTC Video]

Predators I Have Known [EPUB]

Predators I Have Known [EPUB]
Predators I Have Known by Alan Dean Foster
2014 | EPUB | 0.5MB

An adrenaline-fueled travel memoir of life in the wild among the planet’s most ferocious and fascinating predators.

Over the last forty years, New York Times–bestselling author Alan Dean Foster has journeyed around the globe to encounter nature’s most fearsome creatures. His travels have taken him into the heart of the Amazon rain forest on the trail of deadly tangarana ants, on an elephant ride across the sweeping green plains of central India in search of the elusive Bengal tiger, and into the waters of the Australian coast to come face-to-face with great white sharks.

Packed with pulse-pounding adventure and spiked with rapier wit, Predators I Have Known is a thrilling look at life and death in the wild.

The Story of Human Language [TTC Video]

The Story of Human Language [TTC Video]
The Story of Human Language [TTC Video] by John McWhorter
Course No 1600 | AVI, AVC, 448x320 | MP3, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 36x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 5.29GB

I never met a person who is not interested in language, wrote the bestselling author and psychologist Steven Pinker. There are good reasons that language fascinates us so. It not only defines humans as a species, placing us head and shoulders above even the most proficient animal communicators, but it also beguiles us with its endless mysteries. For example:

  • How did different languages come to be?
  • Why isn't there just a single language?
  • How does a language change, and when it does, is that change indicative of decay or growth?
  • How does a language become extinct?

Dr. John McWhorter, one of America's leading linguists and a frequent commentator on network television and National Public Radio, addresses these and other questions as he takes you on an in-depth, 36-lecture tour of the development of human language, showing how a single tongue spoken 150,000 years ago has evolved into the estimated 6,000 languages used around the world today.

An accomplished scholar, Professor McWhorter is also a skilled popularizer, whose book The Power of Babel was called "startling, provocative, and remarkably entertaining," by the San Diego Union-Tribune.

The London Times called him "a born teacher." And Steven Pinker, best known as the author of The Language Instinct, offered this praise for the book: "McWhorter's arguments are sharply reasoned, refreshingly honest, and thoroughly original."

Discover How Linguists Think

For the past century linguistics has been one of the most exciting and productive fields in the social sciences. In the process of telling the story of language, Professor McWhorter introduces you to some of the current controversies in the discipline:

  • Noam Chomsky has famously argued that the ability to use language is innately specified in the human brain. What is the evidence for and against this hypothesis?
  • The popular media have widely reported that words from the world's first language have been reconstructed. Professor McWhorter looks at the reasoning behind this work and the objections to it.
  • One of the most enticing ideas of 20th-century linguistics is that language determines the way we perceive the world. But is this really true?
  • The Ebonics debate of the mid-1990s focused attention on Black English. What is the nature of this dialect? Where did it come from?

Professor McWhorter also briefs you on the recent connection made between an obscure language of Nepal and the language family of Papua New Guinea, which may represent the oldest documentable historical relationship between words, extending back as far as 75,000 years.

In discovering how linguists think, you will begin to see language in an entirely new way. You will learn that everything about a language is eternally and inherently changeable, from its word order and grammar to the very sound and meaning of basic words.

That's why Professor McWhorter describes language as "like one of those lava lamps from the 1970s. It's not marching toward an ideal, and it's not slowly going to the dogs. It's always just variations of the same thing—endless morphings."

A Wealth of Examples from a Teacher Passionate about Language

In an interview with the New York Times, Professor McWhorter said: "Languages have been a passion since I was a small child. I used to teach them to myself as a hobby. I speak three and a bit of Japanese, and can read seven."

In this course, he includes these languages and many more as examples. Anyone who has ever studied a language will surely find it discussed—along with Albanian, Armenian, Turkish, Sanskrit, Mandarin, Cantonese, Tibetan, Korean, Tagalog, Maori, Fijian, Samoan, Gullah, Hopi, Mohawk, Navajo, Yupik Eskimo, Quechua, and Welsh, as well as Latin, Greek, German, Russian, French, Spanish, Swedish, and many others.

It's remarkable how much light one language sheds on another. For example, the ancestor language of English is Proto-Germanic, and the ancestor of that is Proto-Indo-European. A curious transformation took place in the consonants of Proto-Germanic, in which Proto-Indo-European p became f; d became t; and so on with other consonant pairs. So Latin pater is English father, and Latin decem is English ten. This rule is called Grimm's Law after its discoverer—the same Jacob Grimm who collected folk tales.

Such patterns make relationships among different languages clear and make learning these languages much easier.

What You Will Learn

Language basics. In Lecture 1, you start by comparing human language to animal communication and ask, how valid are claims that animals such as chimpanzees have rudimentary language skills? Then you look at intriguing evidence that links a specific gene to the ability to use language. The first appearance of this gene in humans has been calculated and gives a surprisingly early date for the birth of language.

Chomsky's revolution. In Lecture 2, Professor McWhorter notes that linguists are often mistakenly thought to be translators or experts on word histories. But their work takes them far deeper into language. For example, Noam Chomsky and his coworkers have been searching for the grammatical properties common to all languages—an effort that has revolutionized linguistics, though not without controversy.

Change is the norm. In Lectures 3–7, you learn the specific mechanisms responsible for language change, from phenomena such as the tone system in Chinese to the gradual shift in the meanings of words over time. You will find that even the parts of Shakespeare you believe you understand may not mean what you think.

Beginnings. In Lectures 8–13, you explore language families, starting with Indo-European, comprising languages from India to Ireland including English. Other language families discussed are Semitic, Sino-Tibetan, Austronesian, Bantu, and Native American. You also look at the heated debate over the first language.

Dialects. In Lectures 14–19, you cover dialects. Often one dialect is chosen as the standard, and when it is used in writing, it changes more slowly than the dialects that are just spoken. One consequence is that people who speak written languages are often taught that the constructions they produce spontaneously are errors.

Mixing it up. In Lectures 20–22, you study the phenomenon of language mixture. The first language's 6,000 branches have not only diverged into dialects, but they have been constantly mixing with one another on all levels: vocabulary, grammar, syntax, and usage. As a result, English comprises a vocabulary of largely borrowed terms.

How English got that way. In Lectures 23–25, you learn how processes of change lead some languages to develop more grammatical machinery than they need, while others become streamlined, shedding such complexities. English is an interesting example of the latter tendency.

Prisoner of grammar? In Lecture 26, you examine the famous Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, which proposes that features of our grammars channel how we think.

New languages from old. In Lectures 27–32, Professor McWhorter focuses on pidgins and creoles. When people learn a language quickly without being explicitly taught, they develop a pidgin version of it. Then if they need to use this pidgin on an everyday basis it becomes a real language, a creole. Some people argue that Black English is a creole, and Professor McWhorter devotes a lecture to this issue.

Extinction. In Lectures 33 and 34, you come full circle. Having explored the processes that give birth to new languages, you now learn how languages become extinct and what can be done to preserve them.

Conclusion. In Lectures 35 and 36, you explore artificial languages, including Esperanto and sign languages for the deaf, and conclude by examining a single English sentence etymologically. In the process, you learn how word histories reflect the phenomena of language change and mixture worldwide.

The Armory of the Mind

Professor McWhorter covers a wealth of material, enlivened with wit and personal observations:

  • Concerning Shakespeare's language, he points out that the Tin Man in The Wizard of Oz sings Juliet's line "Wherefore art thou Romeo?" in a cadence that suggests "where" as the meaning of wherefore. But in Elizabethan usage, wherefore means "why."
  • Discussing the concept of language as a continuum, he recalls getting into an elevator with two Guyanese linguists. The Guyanese were speaking English in the lobby, but as they ascended they started introducing more and more of their native creole, so by the time they exited, their conversation was incomprehensible to Dr. McWhorter.
  • On the subject of sound change, he observes that the written syllable aw is pronounced ah by an increasing number of Americans, a phenomenon he first noticed in California. "Sushi is ‘raw' fish," he says. "But more and more people are saying, ‘rah' fish."
  • A devotee of the classic British comedy series Are You Being Served?, he enthusiastically recommends it for its generous sampling of nonstandard British accents.

Language is indeed a powerful tool—"the armory of the human mind" in the words of poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge. With this course, you will be richly rewarded in investigating what linguists have learned about the origin and evolution of the marvelous gift of speech.

The Story of Human Language [TTC Video]

Jewish Intellectual History: 16th to 20th Century [TTC Video]

Jewish Intellectual History: 16th to 20th Century [TTC Video]
Jewish Intellectual History: 16th to 20th Century [TTC Video] by David B Ruderman
Course No 4647 | AVI, AVC, 640x480 | MP3, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 4.29GB

God. Torah. Israel. These three concepts—incorporated in personal belief, the meaning of Jewish ritual acts, and the purpose of continued Jewish existence—have been the focus of Jewish thought throughout history.

But the last four centuries have presented Jewish thinkers with difficult challenges:

  • In a world having a history of untold suffering—especially, it seemed, for Jews—was the existence of an all-powerful and comforting God still tenable?
  • What were the purpose and meaning of Jewish practices and customs, given the increasing number of Jews who placed greater value on their own autonomy?
  • Could Jews still justify the notion of a "chosen people" in a society where Jewish integration and full participation with the rest of humanity had become the norm?

These lectures present the varying ways in which a small group of thinkers has attempted to answer these challenges.

These men and, in recent years, women, have reflected deeply on the relevance of Jewish texts and traditions to modern Jews.

Different Routes to a Common Goal

Though their approaches and solutions differed, most shared a common goal: provide a continuing sense of faith, meaning, and identity for their fellow Jews.

Through these lectures, you will observe the time-honored intellectual tradition through which Judaism analyzes, rethinks, and reformulates itself.

This process of preserving its essential character while still trying to accommodate itself to the modern world has kept Judaism a vital and vibrant, rather than static, religion.

This course may serve to introduce you to a new and rich body of thinkers and thinking, for until recently, Jewish intellectual history, though an integral part of Western intellectual history, has been less heralded.

But one of the contributions of the young field of Jewish Studies has been to bring the thinkers featured in this series to a wider audience.

Spinoza's Devastating Challenge

The central figure in the course is well known: the prominent philosopher Benedict (Baruch) Spinoza (1632–1677).

Spinoza's impact was so significant, Professor Ruderman notes, that much of the course might be viewed as a series of responses to his thinking.

Spinoza received a traditional rabbinical education, but he broke with Judaism after his father died. He was raised in Amsterdam, a city in which both Jews and Christians lived in an increasingly tolerant and secular atmosphere.

In his Theological–Political Treatise, published anonymously in 1670, Spinoza became the first Jew to break with the medieval Jewish tradition espoused by Moses Maimonides (1132–1204).

Breaking with Four Centuries of Tradition

Spinoza disputed Maimonides's belief that reason and faith could be reconciled. Because biblical texts were believed to have been inspired by God, he asserted, they were supernatural. They could be interpreted through faith or reason, but not both.

If one chose reason, then the Bible was not divinely inspired but a document created by Man.

This argument was devastating to the question of Jewish identity.

Essentially, it negated God, Torah, and Israel, denying any rationale for Jews to think of themselves as the chosen people, observe ceremonial laws, or accept the authority of the rabbis.

Spinoza's critique laid bare the contradiction between Jewish communal values and secular liberal ones. He was the first to pose a fundamental question that remains relevant to this day: Is it possible to be a true liberal and a traditional Jew?

Three Responses: Insiders, Outsiders, and Rejectionists

This course considers modern Jewish thought largely in terms of two issues:

  • The response to Spinoza and his attack on the very viability of Judaism
  • The shift in the standard by which Jews defined themselves and their faith. In the Middle Ages, this defining factor had been God. In the modern age, it became the non-Jewish world.

With the weakening of the Jewish community, the need to provide a rationale for being Jewish in a non-Jewish world became pressing and more problematic.

Given these two issues, Professor Ruderman presents the various thinkers according to three approaches:

  • Insiders want to remain Jews but believe that Judaism has to be tailored to better fit the culture at large. The problem is how to accomplish this and still preserve the belief that Judaism is unique.
  • Outsiders believe there is no longer a place for Judaism, that Judaism should essentially be overcome to create something in which all humans can share. The philosophies of Spinoza, Karl Marx, and Sigmund Freud might be included in this category.
  • Rejectionists believe Jews should maintain their traditional beliefs and customs and refuse to blend in with the larger Western culture. This approach became very apparent in the wake of the Holocaust.

Reconciling Problems for a Modern World

Most thinkers represented in these lectures are insiders who struggled to create a better fit between Judaism and the contemporary world.

Each had to deal with problems related to cherished notions of God, Torah, and Israel, including:

  • Jewish law: This has been a central issue in modern Jewish thought. In his book Jerusalem (1783), Moses Mendelssohn drew a distinction between moral and ritual commandments, but insisted both were obligatory for Jews. Subsequent thinkers emphasized the moral over the ritual, claiming the former was eternal, while the latter could change.
  • Comparisons with Christianity:Living in a predominantly Christian society led many thinkers to reflect on the relative merits of both religions. Some constructed rationales arguing for the superiority of Judaism over Christianity. Immanuel Wolf implied a belief in inferiority by asserting that "Judaism must raise itself to the level of a science."
  • Particularity: It remained important to demonstrate that the Jews retained their status as a chosen people. Thinkers developed such philosophies as "the mission of Israel" and "Catholic Israel," and highlighted the moral and rational virtues of Judaism in an effort to preserve its unique place in the world.

This lecture series places historical theories and religious practices in a fresh light. You will encounter thinkers who embodied lifestyles and philosophies difficult to categorize but often original and thought provoking.

A Wait before Considering the Holocaust

The final lectures examine the impact of the Holocaust, as well as newer contributions being made by women thinkers.

Jewish thinkers, in fact, did not write extensively about the Holocaust until 1960.

"The shock was so great that the most appropriate response for a while was silence," Professor Ruderman notes.

Women Jewish intellectuals in the last 40 years have challenged the patriarchal nature of Judaism by arguing for full participation of women in ritual services and creation of gender-sensitive prayer books:

  • Judith Plaskow has raised awareness of ways women have been overlooked in Jewish history and in the scriptures themselves.
  • Rachel Adler argues that Judaism's commitment to justice obligates it to address gender inequity.

Professor Ruderman completes the lectures with an evaluation of current Jewish thought and the argument that has been raised that it may no longer be relevant.

In his estimation, however, Jewish thinking is not something that only intellectuals do. It is a widespread and necessary part of Jewish life—an effort to find meaning and hope in an uncertain world.

Jewish Intellectual History: 16th to 20th Century [TTC Video]

Shakespeare's Tragedies [TTC Video]

Shakespeare's Tragedies [TTC Video]
Shakespeare's Tragedies [TTC Video] by Clare R Kinney
Course No 2752 | AVI, XviD, 640x480 | MP3, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 4.33GB

Shakespeare's contributions to stage and language are unequaled. In what Professor Clare R. Kinney calls the "power and audacity of his poetry and stagecraft," Shakespeare has left audiences breathless these past four centuries.

His artistry is as evident in moments of insensate rage, as when King Lear dares Nature to do her worst—

Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! rage! blow!
You cataracts and hurricanoes, spout
Till you have drenched our steeples,
drowned the cocks!

as it is in moments of heartbreaking tenderness, as when Othello steals a few last kisses from the sleeping and innocent wife he is about to murder for the adultery he imagines—

Ah balmy breath, that doth almost persuade
Justice to break her sword! One more, one more. …

But beyond his astonishing feats of language and dramatic impact, Shakespeare also left us a legacy, crafted from his experiences and explorations, of suffering and transgression in his six great mature tragedies: Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, Macbeth, Antony and Cleopatra, and Coriolanus.

Questions and Dilemmas of Tragedy

Experienced students of Shakespeare, those new to his work, and those who may be returning after many years away, will all find it makes an optimal addition to their libraries of books and of other Teaching Company literature courses.

Professor Kinney's aim is to take you deep within each play. You'll observe Shakespeare's protagonists struggling to make choices in the face of competing social, moral, and psychological pressures and "clawing [from] their pain and horror," as she puts it, "a kind of insight."

Professor Kinney supplies a series of insights that teach a nuanced understanding of each play's meaning—a gift that will increase the dramatic impact of every Shakespearean tragedy you see on the stage or screen, or visualize as you read them, as well as enhance your ability to form insights on your own with each reading or performance.

As Professor Kinney works through the plays, you'll see how Shakespeare returns again and again to a set of themes that resonate through his work.

What can happen when the desires of an individual are at odds with the constraints or demands of the society around him? How do love, hatred, and ambition sever loyalties in what would today be called a "dysfunctional family"?

How is power used and felt, whether it be political and erotic power, the power of language and imagination, or even the power of theater itself, as in Hamlet's "play within the play," or in the kind of public theatrics required of, and rejected by, the title character of Coriolanus?

These are only some of the themes Professor Kinney explores in Shakespeare's Tragedies, a 24-lecture look at the astonishing body of work produced by Shakespeare from 1600–1608. It is a body of work made all the more astonishing by considering that it was not written to be the timeless dramatic art it has become, but as commercial theater in a competitive marketplace that placed excessive demands on its writers and performers.

While today's greatest hits run for months, perhaps even years, the theatrical world of Shakespeare's time was very different.

A Theatrical Reality Far Different from Today's

With theaters closed only on church holidays, in bad weather, or in time of plague, theater companies had to have enormous repertories, and a very long run lasted only 10 days. Professor Kinney talks about one theater company, for instance, whose records from the 1594–95 season have survived. The records show 38 plays performed—21 of them newly written—which indicates that a new play was added about every two weeks.

Yet even working under those conditions, Shakespeare was able to produce works that probed the human condition with extraordinary perception.

Moving from play to play, following Shakespeare's recurring themes, Professor Kinney also devotes particular focus to two themes that surface repeatedly in his tragedies.

The first of these issues, that of agency, concerns those who actually get to make choices about the roles they take in their own lives, acting freely, and confronting the consequences of their actions.

Is Macbeth, for example, acting on his own by murdering Duncan to ascend to the throne? Is he responding to half-suppressed forces of ambition that have been unleashed by Lady Macbeth? Or is he the witches' pawn, acting out the tragic script that they have set in motion? The play suggests all of these things, and learning to see and evaluate the evidence for diverse interpretations of a complex drama is one of the many intellectual pleasures offered by these lectures.

A second topic that echoes through these plays is that of transgression, when characters—especially women—make a choice that is perceived as violating a social or moral boundary.

When Desdemona marries the Moor, Othello, for example, she has crossed a racial barrier, committing what her father calls an "unnatural" act. And when she crosses the boundary that demands a wife's silence and submission, she transgresses yet again, daring to dispute her husband's allegations with a denial that earns her his wrathful epithet, "strumpet."

Women as Tragic Protagonists

Professor Kinney plays close attention to the roles of women in these tragedies, considering whether women can indeed be tragic protagonists—all but one of these plays are named after males. She addresses the significance of just who, in a play, gives the soliloquies that make the audience privy to their reflections on their feelings or actions.

But she also looks at the ways women can and do exercise power in the plays, as in the example of Coriolanus's mother, Volumnia, whose belief system has shaped her son's psyche and whose climactic re-enactment of the control she wields over him destroys him.

One of the extra delights of the course comes from the sheer pleasure of hearing Professor Kinney present it. British by birth, she is also an occasional actress, reading not only Shakespeare's lines with emotion and understanding, but also imbuing her own statements during the lectures with high dramatic impact.

Her background as a director of student scenes also stands her in excellent stead as she offers perceptive comments about the choices directors must make in intelligently staging these plays. She ensures that dramatic impact is maximized without diluting the compelling intellectual questions that make Shakespeare's plays so rich and that Professor Kinney's lectures so eloquently bring out.

  • In Hamlet, Professor Kinney introduces you to the play's fascination with secrets and disclosure, explores its treatment of the morality of revenge, and examines the emotional violence Hamlet permits himself when the focus of his rage is female instead of male. She asks whether the "unfolding" (laying bare of identity) that one character demands of another in the very first moments of the play ever quite extends to the mysteries that lie at the heart of Hamlet himself.
  • In Othello, you'll encounter the "motiveless malignity" of the villainous Iago's manipulations, the racial and gender barriers its characters violate, and the "poisoned sight" that brings down a character unable to negotiate the demands of his identities as both a warrior and a lover.
  • In King Lear, you'll see the consequences of a rash choice unfold in one of Shakespeare's most harrowing tragedies, wondering, as generations of critics have, where—or whether—consolation can ever be found in its shattering events.
  • In Macbeth, you'll journey through the darkest corridors of ambition, conscience, and self-knowledge, where a strong-willed woman shares with her husband the role of tragic protagonist. Lady Macbeth finds that reshaping her husband's "manliness" ironically splits their partnership apart.
  • In Antony and Cleopatra, you'll meet two protagonists engulfed by the complexities of Rome's imperial history. One is torn between two aspects of his own identity, and the other is determined, even in the face of Rome's armies, to control the means of her death, and to choose the part of her conflicted lover's identity that will survive them.
  • In Coriolanus, you'll meet a war-scarred aristocrat questing for heroic independence in the midst of a world of "politics as usual." Unable to compromise his principles and, as a result, alienated from his own community, he cannot understand what has doomed him.

As Professor Kinney notes, "Shakespeare's tragedies often unfold in geographically distant places, or are set in a far-off past—but they are often shaped and inflected by matters surprisingly close to home." That is no less true of the course itself. Shakespeare's Tragedies, in Professor Kinney's words, persists in asking "what kind of significance we, in the 21st century, might wrest out of Shakespeare's tragic spectacles."

Shakespeare's Tragedies [TTC Video]

The Economist Audio Edition [January 28, 2017]

The Economist Audio Edition [January 28, 2017]
The Economist Audio Edition [January 28, 2017]
MP3@48 kbps + EPUB + AZW3 | 157.34MB

In Retreat: Global companies in the era of protectionism

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