Recent Books

  • Media Unlimited

    Price: $25.00

    This provocative new exploration of our media-saturated lives is a worthy successor to Marshall McLuhan’s Understanding Media. Everyone knows that the media is all around us, but no one quite understands its effect on our lives. Critics and analysts focus on this show or that celebrity, but they miss the true import of our total immersion in a fast-moving sea of sounds and images. As he did with television in Inside Prime Time and with the culture wars in The Twilight of Common Dreams, Todd Gitlin once again recasts the world we think we know. In Media Unlimited, a remarkable and original look at our media-saturated, speed-addicted world, he makes us stare, as if for the first time, at the biggest picture of all. Ranging from video games to elevator music, action movies to reality shows, punditry to Internet exhibitionists, Gitlin evokes a world of relentless sensation and nonstop stimulus. Far from signaling a “new information age” or a rescue from passivity,...

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  • Freedom in Chains

    Price: $19.95

    Governments are bigger and more powerful than ever, while a citizen’s ability to control his or her own life has never been less effective. Bovard shows how the State threatens to destroy the individual in order to preserve the belief that any government is superior to the citizen. Bovard asks how we got to this point and answers with a thoughtful look at the history of governmental control from ancient times to the present, peppered throughout with observations on our present day, out of control governmental regulatory commissions and all-confiscating IRS.

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  • Frozen Desire

    Price: $25.00

    Novelist Buchan (High Latitudes, Farrar, 1996), a former correspondent for the Financial Times, traces the meaning of money since its beginning. He discusses money in its various formats, emphasizing that money itself is not just an object but “an outcome of a vast mountain of social arrangements.” Various scenarios depict the role of money in love, war, religion, and other areas of human culture. Buchan uses many historical and literary works to clarify the perception of money throughout the ages, relying on Aristotle, Columbus, Shakespeare, John Law, Marx, and Keynes, to name a few, in these stimulating discussions. Although he writes in a scholarly style, Buchan his many suspenseful and intriguing passages. – Steven J. Mayover, Free Lib. of Philadelphia

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  • Big Test

    Price: $22.95

    This brilliant book shows us for the first time the ideas, the people, and the politics behind a fifty-year-old utopian social experiment that changed modern America. The idea was to use the new science of intelligence testing to assess and sort American students in order to create a truly democratic elite that would lead postwar America to progress, strength, and prosperity. No writer before Nicholas Lemann has understood the significance of this extraordinary drama, and in this remarkable synthesis of vibrant storytelling, vivid portraiture, and thematic analysis, he reveals it for the first time. Predictably, the utopian experiment did not turn out as planned. It created a new elite, but it generated conflict and tension. Lemann shows that this new American meritocracy, however well-educated and privileged, is neither natural nor inevitable, nor does it apportion opportunity fairly. He concludes with his own keen assessment of what the future may and should hold.

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  • Beyond the River

    Price: $25.00

    The decades preceding the Civil War were rife with fierce sectarian violence along the borders between slave and free states. The Ohio River was one such border. Here in the river towns of Ohio and Kentucky, abolitionists and slave chasers confronted each other during the “war before the war.” Slave masters and bounty hunters chased runaway slaves from Kentucky into Ohio, hoping to catch their quarry before the slaves disappeared on the underground path to freedom. In the river town of Ripley, the slave hunters inevitably confronted John Rankin and his determined, courageous colleagues. One of the early abolitionist leaders, Rankin began his career when he wrote a series of letters denouncing his brother’s recent purchase of a slave in Virginia. The letters were collected and published as Letters on American Slavery and influenced William Lloyd Garrison, among others. Rankin, a Presbyterian minister and a farmer, bought property on a high hilltop overlooking Ripley and the Ohio River. His house was visible for miles into Kentucky,...

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  • American Moderns

    Price: $24.95

    A brilliant account of the legendary American bohemians, hailed as “the best book ever written about this era, these people, and the ways they shook up our national culture for good” (Michael Kazin) In the early years of the twentieth century, an exuberant band of talented individualists living in a shabby neighborhood called Greenwich Village set out to change the world. Committed to free speech, free love, and politically engaged art, they swept away sexual prudery, stodgy bourgeois art, and political conservatism as they clamorously declared the birth of the new. Christine Stansell offers the first comprehensive history of this legendary period. She takes us deep into the downtown bohemia, which brought together creative dissenters from all walks of life: hoboes and Harvard men, society matrons and immigrant Jews, Wobblies and New Women, poets and anarchists. And she depicts their lyrical hopes for the century they felt they were sponsoring — a radiant vision of modernity, both egalitarian and artful,...

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