Nature

What Are People For? | ,

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Ranging from America’s insatiable consumerism and household economies to literary subjects and America’s attitude toward waste, here Berry gracefully navigates from one topic to the next. He speaks candidly about the ills plaguing America and the growing gap between people and the land. Despite the somber nature of these essays, Berry’s voice and prose provide an underlying sense of faith and hope. He frames his reflections with poetic responsibility, standing up as a firm believer in the power of the human race not only to fix its past mistakes but to build a future that will provide a better life for all..

Fiction

The People in the Trees | Hanya Yanagihara

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Readers of exciting, challenging and visionary literary fiction—including admirers of Norman Rush's Mating, Ann Patchett's State of Wonder, Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible, and Peter Matthiessen's At Play in the Fields of the Lord—will be drawn to this astonishingly gripping and accomplished first novel. A decade in the writing, this is an anthropological adventure story that combines the visceral allure of a thriller with a profound and tragic vision of what happens when cultures collide. It is a book that instantly catapults Hanya Yanagihara into the company of young novelists who really, really matter. In 1950, a young doctor called Norton Perina signs on with the anthropologist Paul Tallent for an expedition to the remote Micronesian island of Ivu'ivu in search of a rumored lost tribe. They succeed, finding not only that tribe but also a group of forest dwellers they dub "The Dreamers," who turn out to be fantastically long-lived but progressively more senile. Perina suspects the source of their longevity is a hard-to-find turtle; unable to resist the possibility of eternal life, he kills one and smuggles some meat back to the States. He scientifically proves his thesis, earning worldwide fame and the Nobel Prize, but he soon discovers that its miraculous property comes at a terrible price. As things quickly spiral out of his control, his own demons take hold, with devastating personal consequences..

Philosophy

Life Is a Miracle | Wendell Berry

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“[A] scathing assessment . . . Berry shows that Wilson's much–celebrated, controversial pleas in Consilience to unify all branches of knowledge is nothing more than a fatuous subordination of religion, art, and everything else that is good to science . . . Berry is one of the most perceptive critics of American society writing today.” —The Washington Post “I am tempted to say he understands [Consilience] better than Wilson himself . . . A new emancipation proclamation in which he speaks again and again about how to defy the tyranny of scientific materialism.”—The Christian Science Monitor In Life Is a Miracle, the devotion of science to the quantitative and reductionist world is measured against the mysterious, qualitative suggestions of religion and art. Berry sees life as the collision of these separate forces, but without all three in the mix we are left at sea in the world..

Political Science

The World-Ending Fire | Wendell Berry

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The most comprehensive―and only author-authorized―Wendell Berry reader, "America's greatest philosopher on sustainable life and living" (Chicago Tribune). In a time when our relationship to the natural world is ruled by the violence and greed of unbridled consumerism, Wendell Berry speaks out in these prescient essays, drawn from his fifty-year campaign on behalf of American lands and communities. The writings gathered in The World-Ending Fire are the unique product of a life spent farming the fields of rural Kentucky with mules and horses, and of the rich, intimate knowledge of the land cultivated by this work. These are essays written in defiance of the false call to progress and in defense of local landscapes, essays that celebrate our cultural heritage, our history, and our home. With grace and conviction, Wendell Berry shows that we simply cannot afford to succumb to the mass-produced madness that drives our global economy―the natural world will not allow it. Yet he also shares with us a vision of consolation and of hope. We may be locked in an uneven struggle, but we can and must begin to treat our land, our neighbors, and ourselves with respect and care. As Berry urges, we must abandon arrogance and stand in awe..

Fiction

Normal People | Sally Rooney

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LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE: A wondrously wise, genuinely unputdownable new novel from Sally Rooney, winner of the 2017 Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award (at 26, tied with Zadie Smith for the youngest-ever recipient)--the quintessential coming-of-age love story for our time. Connell Waldron is one of the most popular boys in his small-town high school--he is a star of the football team, an excellent student, and never wanting for attention from girls. The one thing he doesn't have is money. Marianne Sheridan, a classmate of Connell's, has the opposite problem. Marianne is plain-looking, odd, and stubborn, and while her family is well-off, she has no friends to speak of. There is, however, a deep and undeniable connection between the two teenagers, one that develops into a secret relationship. Everything changes when both Connell and Marianne are accepted to Trinity College. Suddenly Marianne is well-liked and elegant, holding court with her intellectual friends while Connell hangs at the sidelines, not quite as fluent in language of the elite. Throughout their years at university, Marianne and Connell circle each other, falling in and out of romance but never straying far from where they started. And as Marianne experiments with an increasingly dangerous string of boyfriends, Connell must decide how far he is willing to go to save his oldest friend. Sally Rooney brings her brilliant psychological acuity and perfectly spare prose to a novel that explores the subtleties of class, the electricity of first love, and the inescapable challenges of family and friendships. Normal People is a book that you will read in one sitting, and then immediately share with your friends..

Poetry

The Farm | Wendell Berry

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A collector's edition, and the perfect gift for the stalwart Wendell Berry fan First printed in 1995 by Gray Zeitz of the beloved Larkspur Press in Monterey, Kentucky, this gift edition is a beautiful reproduction of Wendell Berry’s book–length poem, illustrated with the original drawings by Carolyn Whitesel..

Social Science

Evicted | Matthew Desmond

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WINNER OF THE 2017 PULITZER PRIZE GENERAL NON-FICTION From Harvard sociologist and MacArthur "Genius" Matthew Desmond, a landmark work of scholarship and reportage that will forever change the way we look at poverty in America In this brilliant, heartbreaking book, Matthew Desmond takes us into the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee to tell the story of eight families on the edge. Arleen is a single mother trying to raise her two sons on the $20 a month she has left after paying for their rundown apartment. Scott is a gentle nurse consumed by a heroin addiction. Lamar, a man with no legs and a neighborhood full of boys to look after, tries to work his way out of debt. Vanetta participates in a botched stickup after her hours are cut. All are spending almost everything they have on rent, and all have fallen behind. The fates of these families are in the hands of two landlords: Sherrena Tarver, a former schoolteacher turned inner-city entrepreneur, and Tobin Charney, who runs one of the worst trailer parks in Milwaukee. They loathe some of their tenants and are fond of others, but as Sherrena puts it, “Love don’t pay the bills.” She moves to evict Arleen and her boys a few days before Christmas. Even in the most desolate areas of American cities, evictions used to be rare. But today, most poor renting families are spending more than half of their income on housing, and eviction has become ordinary, especially for single mothers. In vivid, intimate prose, Desmond provides a ground-level view of one of the most urgent issues facing America today. As we see families forced into shelters, squalid apartments, or more dangerous neighborhoods, we bear witness to the human cost of America’s vast inequality—and to people’s determination and intelligence in the face of hardship. Based on years of embedded fieldwork and painstakingly gathered data, this masterful book transforms our understanding of extreme poverty and economic exploitation while providing fresh ideas for solving a devastating, uniquely American problem. Its unforgettable scenes of hope and loss remind us of the centrality of home, without which nothing else is possible. NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER | WINNER OF THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FOR NONFICTION | WINNER OF THE PEN/JOHN KENNETH GALBRAITH AWARD FOR NONFICTION | WINNER OF THE ANDREW CARNEGIE MEDAL FOR EXCELLENCE IN NONFICTION | FINALIST FOR THE LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK PRIZE | NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR by The New York Times Book Review • The Boston Globe • The Washington Post • NPR • Entertainment Weekly • The New Yorker • Bloomberg • Esquire • Buzzfeed • Fortune • San Francisco Chronicle • Milwaukee Journal Sentinel • St. Louis Post-Dispatch • Politico • The Week • Bookpage • Kirkus Reviews • Amazon • Barnes and Noble Review • Apple • Library Journal • Chicago Public Library • Publishers Weekly • Booklist • Shelf Awareness.

History

In Defense of Looting | Vicky Osterweil

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A fresh argument for rioting and looting as our most powerful tools for dismantling white supremacy Looting--a crowd of people publicly, openly, and directly seizing goods--is one of the more extreme actions that can take place in the midst of social unrest. Even self-identified radicals distance themselves from looters, fearing that violent tactics reflect badly on the broader movement. But Vicky Osterweil argues that stealing goods and destroying property are direct, pragmatic strategies of wealth redistribution and improving life for the working class--not to mention the brazen messages these methods send to the police and the state. All our beliefs about the innate righteousness of property and ownership, Osterweil explains, are built on the history of anti-Black, anti-Indigenous oppression. From slave revolts to labor strikes to the modern-day movements for climate change, Black lives, and police abolition, Osterweil makes a convincing case for rioting and looting as weapons that bludgeon the status quo while uplifting the poor and marginalized. In Defense of Looting is a history of violent protest sparking social change, a compelling reframing of revolutionary activism, and a practical vision for a dramatically restructured society..

Social Science

Why I Am Not Going to Buy a Computer | Wendell Berry

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A brief meditation on the role of technology in his own life and how it has changed the landscape of the United States from "America's greatest philosopher on sustainable life and living" (Chicago Tribune). "A number of people, by now, have told me that I could greatly improve things by buying a computer. My answer is that I am not going to do it. I have several reasons, and they are good ones." Wendell Berry first challenged the idea that our advanced technological age is a good thing when he penned "Why I Am Not Going to Buy a Computer" in the late 1980s for Harper's Magazine, galvanizing a critical reaction eclipsing any the magazine had seen before. He followed by responding with "Feminism, the Body, and the Machine." Both essays are collected in one short volume for the first time..

Political Science

The Way of Ignorance | Wendell Berry

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A soulful, searching collection of essays that tackle the complexities of contemporary America from “the prophet of rural America” (New York Times). From the war in Iraq to Hurricane Katrina to the political sniping engendered by Supreme Court nominations—contemporary American society is characterized by divisive anger, profound loss, and danger. Wendell Berry, “the prophet of rural America” (New York Times) and one of the country’s foremost cultural critics, responds with hope and intelligence in a series of essays that tackle the major questions of the day. Whose freedom are we considering when we speak of the free market or free enterprise? What is really involved in our national security? What is the price of ownership without affection? Berry answers in prose that shuns abstraction for clarity, coherence, and passion, giving us essays that may be the finest of his long career. “Everything in the book illumines.” —Booklist “[Berry’s] poems, novels and essays . . . are probably the most sustained contemporary articulation of America’s agrarian, Jeffersonian ideal.” —Publishers Weekly “Wendell Berry is one of those rare individuals who speaks to us always of responsibility, of the individual cultivation of an active and aware participation in the arts of life.” —The Bloomsbury Review.

Political Science

Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race | Reni Eddo-Lodge

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'Every voice raised against racism chips away at its power. We can't afford to stay silent. This book is an attempt to speak' The book that sparked a national conversation. Exploring everything from eradicated black history to the inextricable link between class and race, Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race is the essential handbook for anyone who wants to understand race relations in Britain today. THE NO.1 SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER WINNER OF THE BRITISH BOOK AWARDS NON-FICTION NARRATIVE BOOK OF THE YEAR 2018 FOYLES NON-FICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR BLACKWELL'S NON-FICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR WINNER OF THE JHALAK PRIZE LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE FOR NON-FICTION LONGLISTED FOR THE ORWELL PRIZE SHORTLISTED FOR A BOOKS ARE MY BAG READERS AWARD.

Business & Economics

Good to Great | Jim Collins

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The Challenge Built to Last, the defining management study of the nineties, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the verybeginning. But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness? The Study For years, this question preyed on the mind of Jim Collins. Are there companies that defy gravity and convert long-term mediocrity or worse into long-term superiority? And if so, what are the universal distinguishing characteristics that cause a company to go from good to great? The Standards Using tough benchmarks, Collins and his research team identified a set of elite companies that made the leap to great results and sustained those results for at least fifteen years. How great? After the leap, the good-to-great companies generated cumulative stock returns that beat the general stock market by an average of seven times in fifteen years, better than twice the results delivered by a composite index of the world's greatest companies, including Coca-Cola, Intel, General Electric, and Merck. The Comparisons The research team contrasted the good-to-great companies with a carefully selected set of comparison companies that failed to make the leap from good to great. What was different? Why did one set of companies become truly great performers while the other set remained only good? Over five years, the team analyzed the histories of all twenty-eight companies in the study. After sifting through mountains of data and thousands of pages of interviews, Collins and his crew discovered the key determinants of greatness -- why some companies make the leap and others don't. The Findings The findings of the Good to Great study will surprise many readers and shed light on virtually every area of management strategy and practice. The findings include: Level 5 Leaders: The research team was shocked to discover the type of leadership required to achieve greatness. The Hedgehog Concept (Simplicity within the Three Circles): To go from good to great requires transcending the curse of competence. A Culture of Discipline: When you combine a culture of discipline with an ethic of entrepreneurship, you get the magical alchemy of great results. Technology Accelerators: Good-to-great companies think differently about the role of technology. The Flywheel and the Doom Loop: Those who launch radical change programs and wrenching restructurings will almost certainly fail to make the leap. “Some of the key concepts discerned in the study,” comments Jim Collins, "fly in the face of our modern business culture and will, quite frankly, upset some people.” Perhaps, but who can afford to ignore these findings?.

Juvenile Nonfiction

Coronavirus: A Book for Children | Elizabeth Jenner,Kate Wilson,Nia Roberts

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“An elegant, effective work. Download this now, read it immediately, share it with everyone you know.” —School Library Journal (starred review) This informative and accessible guide for young readers defines the coronavirus, explains why everyday routines have been disrupted, and lays out how everyone can do their part to help. With child-appropriate answers and explanations, the book addresses key questions, like: How do you catch coronavirus and what happens if you have it? Why are people so worried about it? Is there a cure? Why do we have to stay home? What can I do to help? And what happens next?.

Social Science

White Fragility | Robin DiAngelo

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The New York Times best-selling book exploring the counterproductive reactions white people have when their assumptions about race are challenged, and how these reactions maintain racial inequality. In this “vital, necessary, and beautiful book” (Michael Eric Dyson), antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and “allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to ‘bad people’ (Claudia Rankine). Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue. In this in-depth exploration, DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively..

Self-Help

How to Win Friends and Influence People | Dale Carnegie

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Do you feel stuck in life, not knowing how to make it more successful? Do you wish to become more popular? Are you craving to earn more? Do you wish to expand your horizon, earn new clients and win people over with your ideas? How to Win Friends and Influence People is a well-researched and comprehensive guide that will help you through these everyday problems and make success look easier. You can learn to expand your social circle, polish your skill set, find ways to put forward your thoughts more clearly, and build mental strength to counter all hurdles that you may come across on the path to success. Having helped millions of readers from the world over achieve their goals, the clearly listed techniques and principles will be the answers to all your questions..

Social Science

Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century | Jessica Bruder

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The inspiration for Chloé Zhao's 2020 Golden Lion award-winning film starring Frances McDormand. "People who thought the 2008 financial collapse was over a long time ago need to meet the people Jessica Bruder got to know in this scorching, beautifully written, vivid, disturbing (and occasionally wryly funny) book." —Rebecca Solnit From the beet fields of North Dakota to the campgrounds of California to Amazon’s CamperForce program in Texas, employers have discovered a new, low-cost labor pool, made up largely of transient older adults. These invisible casualties of the Great Recession have taken to the road by the tens of thousands in RVs and modified vans, forming a growing community of nomads. Nomadland tells a revelatory tale of the dark underbelly of the American economy—one which foreshadows the precarious future that may await many more of us. At the same time, it celebrates the exceptional resilience and creativity of these Americans who have given up ordinary rootedness to survive, but have not given up hope..

Biography & Autobiography

Wendell Berry | Jason Peters

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A portrait of an American thinker with contributions by Barbara Kingsolver, Bill McKibben, Sven Birkerts, Wes Jackson, and more: “A masterful collection.” —Charlotte Observer Essayist, social critic, poet, “mad farmer,” novelist, teacher, and prophet: Wendell Berry has been called many things, but the broad sweep of his contemporary relevance and influence defies facile labels. With a unique perspective and far-reaching vision, Berry poses complex questions about humankind and our relationship to the land and offers simple but profound solutions. Berry’s writings give voice to a provocative but consistent philosophy that extends far beyond its agrarian core to include elements of sociology, the natural sciences, politics, religion, philosophy, linguistics, agriculture, and other seemingly incompatible fields of study. Wendell Berry: Life and Work examines this wise, original thinker, appraising his written work and exploring his influence as an activist and artist. Each of the contributors—including Hayden Carruth, Sven Birkerts, Barbara Kingsolver, Stanley Hauerwas, Donald Hall, Ed McClanahan, Bill McKibben, Scott Russell Sanders, Norman Wirzba, Wes Jackson, and Eric T. Freyfogle—examines an aspect of Berry’s varied yet cohesive body of work. Also included are highly personal glimpses of Berry: his career, academic influence, and unconventional lifestyle. These deft sketches show the purity of Berry’s agrarian lifestyle and demonstrate that there is nothing simple about the life to which he’s devoted himself. He embraces a life that sustains him not by easy purchase and haste but by physical labor and patience, not by mindless acquiescence to a centralized economy but by attention to local ways and wisdom. This book combines biographical sketches, personal accounts, literary criticism, and social commentary. The result is a rich portrait of one of America’s most profound and honest thinkers..

Psychology

The Righteous Mind | Jonathan Haidt

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The bestseller that challenges conventional thinking about morality, politics, and religion in a way that speaks to conservatives and liberals alike—a “landmark contribution to humanity’s understanding of itself” (The New York Times Book Review). Drawing on his twenty-five years of groundbreaking research on moral psychology, social psychologist Jonathan Haidt shows how moral judgments arise not from reason but from gut feelings. He shows why liberals, conservatives, and libertarians have such different intuitions about right and wrong, and he shows why each side is actually right about many of its central concerns. In this subtle yet accessible book, Haidt gives you the key to understanding the miracle of human cooperation, as well as the curse of our eternal divisions and conflicts. If you’re ready to trade in anger for understanding, read The Righteous Mind..

Social Science

Me and White Supremacy | Layla F. Saad

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The New York Times and USA Today bestseller! This eye-opening book challenges you to do the essential work of unpacking your biases, and helps white people take action and dismantle the privilege within themselves so that you can stop (often unconsciously) inflicting damage on people of color, and in turn, help other white people do better, too. "Layla Saad is one of the most important and valuable teachers we have right now on the subject of white supremacy and racial injustice."—New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Gilbert Based on the viral Instagram challenge that captivated participants worldwide, Me and White Supremacy takes readers on a 28-day journey, complete with journal prompts, to do the necessary and vital work that can ultimately lead to improving race relations. Updated and expanded from the original workbook (downloaded by nearly 100,000 people), this critical text helps you take the work deeper by adding more historical and cultural contexts, sharing moving stories and anecdotes, and including expanded definitions, examples, and further resources, giving you the language to understand racism, and to dismantle your own biases, whether you are using the book on your own, with a book club, or looking to start family activism in your own home. This book will walk you step-by-step through the work of examining: Examining your own white privilege What allyship really means Anti-blackness, racial stereotypes, and cultural appropriation Changing the way that you view and respond to race How to continue the work to create social change Awareness leads to action, and action leads to change. For readers of White Fragility, White Rage, So You Want To Talk About Race, The New Jim Crow, How to Be an Anti-Racist and more who are ready to closely examine their own beliefs and biases and do the work it will take to create social change. "Layla Saad moves her readers from their heads into their hearts, and ultimately, into their practice. We won't end white supremacy through an intellectual understanding alone; we must put that understanding into action."—Robin DiAngelo, author of New York Times bestseller White Fragility.

Philosophy

What Are We? | Eric T. Olson

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From the time of Locke, discussions of personal identity have often ignored the question of our basic metaphysical nature: whether we human people are biological organisms, spatial or temporal parts of organisms, bundles of perceptions, or what have you. The result of this neglect has been centuries of wild proposals and clashing intuitions. What Are We? is the first general study of this important question. It beings by explaining what the question means and how it differs from others, such as questions of personal identity and the mind-body problem. It then examines in some depth the main possible accounts of our metaphysical nature, detailing both their theoretical virtues and the often grave difficulties they face. The book does not endorse any particular account of what we are, but argues that the matter turns on more general issues in the ontology of material things. If composition is universal--if any material things whatever make up something bigger--then we are temporal parts of organisms. If things never compose anything bigger, so that there are only mereological simples, then we too are simples--perhaps the immaterial substances of Descartes--or else we do not exist at all (a view Olson takes very seriously). The intermediate view that some things compose bigger things and others do not leads almost inevitably to the conclusion that we are organisms. So we can discover what we are by working out when composition occurs..