Daniel Quinn - Beyond Civilization
In Beyond Civilization, Daniel Quinn thinks the unthinkable. We all know there's no one right way to build a bicycle, no one right way to design an automobile, no one right way to make a pair of shoes, but we're convinced that there must be only one right way to live -- and the one we have is it, no matter what. Beyond Civilization makes practical sense of the vision of Daniel Quinn's best-selling novel Ishmael. Examining ancient civilizations such as the Maya and the Olmec, as well as modern-day microcosms of alternative living like circus societies, Quinn guides us on a quest for a new model for society, one that is forward-thinking and encourages diversity instead of suppressing it. Beyond Civilization is not about a "New World Order" but a "New Personal World Order" that would allow people to assert control over their own destiny and grant them the freedom to create their own way of life right now -- not in some distant utopian future.
Jean Baudrillard - Art and Artefact
This book offers a major reappraisal of Jean Baudrillard's thoughts on the image, radical illusion and media culture. Here for the first time, through a number of highly accessible interviews and recent essays, Baudrillard introduces what he calls the `stunning clarity' of the photographic, and fascinatingly outlines his present thoughts on urban reality, aesthetics, virtual reality and new media technologies, in the light of his practice as a photographer. The book is illustrated with eight colour plates of Baudrillard's photographs and includes a number of provocative and illuminating responses to his recent writings from noted Baudrillard scholars. It also includes a definitive bibliography of critical response to Baudrillar's writings on media culture, art and photography.
Edward W. Said - Orientalism
In this highly acclaimed seminal work, Edward Said surveys the history and nature of Western attitudes towards the East, considering Orientalism as a powerful European ideological creation – a way for writers, philosophers and colonial administrators to deal with the ‘otherness’ of Eastern culture, customs and beliefs. He traces this view through the writings of Homer, Nerval and Flaubert, Disraeli and Kipling, whose imaginative depictions have greatly contributed to the West’s romantic and exotic picture of the Orient. In his new preface, Said examines the effect of continuing Western imperialism after recent events in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq.
Pierre Bourdieu - Distinction
No judgement of taste is innocent. In a word, we are all snobs. Pierre Bourdieu brilliantly illuminates this situation of the middle class in the modern world. France's leading sociologist focusses here on the French bourgeoisie, its tastes and preferences. Distinction is at once a vast ethnography of contemporary France and a dissection of the bourgeois mind. In the course of everyday life people constantly choose between what they find aesthetically pleasing and what they consider tacky, merely trendy, or ugly. Bourdieu bases his study on surveys that took into account the multitude of social factors that play a part in a Frenchperson's choice of clothing, furniture, leisure activities, dinner menus for guests, and many other matters of taste. What emerges from his analysis is that social snobbery is everywhere in the bourgeois world. The different aesthetic choices people make are all distinctions-that is, choices made in opposition to those made by other classes. Taste is not pure. Bourdieu finds a world of social meaning in the decision to order bouillabaisse, in our contemporary cult of thinness, in the "California sports" such as jogging and cross-country skiing.
Stefan Klein - Survival of the Nicest
This revelatory tour de force by an acclaimed and internationally bestselling science writer upends our understanding of “survival of the fittest”—and invites us all to think and act more altruistically The phrase “survival of the fittest” conjures an image of the most cutthroat individuals rising to the top. But Stefan Klein, author of the #1 international bestseller The Science of Happiness and winner of the Georg von Holtzbrinck Prize for Scientific Journalism, makes the startling assertion that the key to achieving lasting personal and societal success lies in helping others. In fact, Klein argues, altruism is our defining characteristic: Natural selection favored those early humans who cooperated in groups, and with survival more assured, our altruistic ancestors were free to devote brainpower to developing intelligence, language, and culture—our very humanity. As Klein puts it, “We humans became first the friendliest and then the most intelligent apes.” To build his persuasive case for how altruistic behavior made us human—and why it pays to get along—Klein synthesizes an extraordinary array of material: current research on genetics and the brain, economics, social psychology, behavioral and anthropological experiments, history, and modern culture. Ultimately, his groundbreaking findings lead him to a vexing question: If we’re really hard-wired to act for one another’s benefit, why aren’t we all getting along? Klein believes we’ve learned to mistrust our generous instincts because success is so often attributed to selfish ambition. In Survival of the Nicest, he invites us to rethink what it means to be the “fittest” as he shows how caring for others can protect us from loneliness and depression, make us happier and healthier, reward us economically, and even extend our lives.
Henry Jenkins - Textual Poachers
"Get a life," William Shatner told Star Trek fans. Yet, as Textual Poachers argues, fans already have a "life," a complex subculture which draws its resources from commercial culture while also reworking them to serve alternative interests. Rejecting stereotypes of fans as cultural dupes, social misfits, and mindless consumers, Jenkins represents media fans as active producers and skilled manipulators of program meanings, as nomadic poachers constructing their own culture from borrowed materials, as an alternative social community defined through its cultural preferences and consumption practices. Written from an insider's perspective and providing vivid examples from fan artifacts, Textual Poachers offers an ethnographic account of the media fan community, its interpretive strategies, its social institutions and cultural practices, and its troubled relationship to the mass media and consumer capitalism. Drawing on the work of Michel de Ceteau, Jenkins shows how fans of Star Trek, Blake's 7, The Professionals, Beauty and the Beast, Starsky and Hutch, Alien Nation, Twin Peaks, and other popular programs exploit these cultural materials as the basis for their stories, songs, videos, and social interactions. Addressing both academics and fans, Jenkins builds a powerful case for the richness of fan culture as a popular response to the mass media and as a challenge to the producers' attempts to regulate textual meanings. Textual Poachers guides readers through difficult questions about popular consumption, genre, gender, sexuality, and interpretation, documenting practices and processes which test and challenge basic assumptions of contemporary media theory.
Oliver James - Affluenza
An epidemic of 'affluenza' is sweeping through the English-speaking world, an obsessive, envious, keeping-up-with-the-Joneses, that makes us twice as prone to depression, anxiety and addictions than people in other developed nations. And now we are infecting the rest of the world with this virulent virus. In this eloquent account, James reveals how issues like consumerism, property fever and the battle of the sexes vary across societies with different values, beliefs and traditions. And leads us to an unvoidable and potentially life changing conclusion: that to ensure our mental health we can and must pursue our needs rather than our wants.
Ethan Zuckermann - Rewire
A rousing call to action for those who would be citizens of the world—online and off. In an age of connection supercharged by the Internet, we often assume that more people online means a smaller, more cosmopolitan world. In reality, it is easier to ship bottles of water from Fiji to Atlanta than it is to get news from Tokyo to New York. In Rewire media expert Ethan Zuckerman draws on contemporary research in psychology, sociology, and his own work on how humans “flock together” to explain why the technological ability to reach someone does not inevitably lead to increased human connection. For those who seek a wider picture—a picture now critical for global success—Zuckerman highlights the challenges, and the headway already made, by attempts to bridge cultures through translation, cross-cultural inspiration, and the search for new, serendipitous experience. Rich with Zuckerman’s personal experience and wisdom, Rewire offers a map of the social, technical, and policy innovations needed to more tightly connect the world.
Erich Fromm - To Have or to Be?
To Have Or to Be? is one of the seminal books of the second half of the 20th century. Nothing less than a manifesto for a new social and psychological revolution to save our threatened planet, this book is a summary of the penetrating thought of Eric Fromm. His thesis is that two modes of existence struggle for the spirit of humankind: the having mode, which concentrates on material possessions, power, and aggression, and is the basis of the universal evils of greed, envy, and violence; and the being mode, which is based on love, the pleasure of sharing, and in productive activity. To Have Or to Be? is a brilliant program for socioeconomic change.
Arató András - Civil társadalom, forradalom és alkotmány
Arató András könyve rólunk és nekünk szól. A szerző szeme New York-i, a szíve budapesti. A könyv a kilencvenes években lezajlott közép-kelet-európai, s azon belül a magyar változások politikatudományi krónikája. Csodálatos könyv a század egyik legcsodálatosabb évtizedéről. Fogalmilag pontos, elméletileg világos, tapasztalatilag hiteles. Megtudhatjuk belőle, hogy mi történt és miért.
Charles Hayes - Tripping
Taking a balanced, objective approach, the book depicts a broad spectrum of altered states, from the sublime to the terrifying. Included are fifty narratives about unforgettable psychedelic experiences from an international array of subjects representing all walks of life. Supplemental essays provide a synopsis of the history and culture of psychedelics and a discussion of the kinetics of tripping
Mia Kirshner - J. B. Mackinnon - Paul Shoebridges - Michael Simons - I Live Here
This paper documentary, as they bill it, tells hot-button stories from four world crisis areas: Chechnya (in the midst of war), Burma (ethnic cleansing), Mexico (globalization) and Malawi (AIDS). Those credited are identified as an actor, an author and two creative directors who have conceptualized international advocacy campaigns, as well as a number of other artists and writers. Each 84-page book (collected in a foldout case) is formatted as a collage-illustrated multimedia journal with stories of various refugees. Two contain short graphic novels. Joe Sacco (Palestine) tackles Chechnya in his straightforward lack of style. Burma is the fumetti-inspired story of a young sex worker, featuring heavily photo-referenced art by Kamel Khelif. The Mexican entry tells the story of one of the many young female factory workers gone missing and found dead in Juarez. Malawi has the feel of an African folktale. An ambitious project of this scope, with all the attendant marketing, may strike the jaded as another guilt-assuaging, résumé-building charity effort. However, the vibrant, collage-like approach to the subject matter gives the material immediacy, even if those most likely to read it are already persuaded something should be done about these perils.
Anthony Giddens - The Consequences of Modernity
In this major theoretical statement, the author offers a new and provoctive interpretation of institutional transformations associated with modernity. What is modernity? The author suggests, “As a first approximation, let us simply say the following: ‘modernity’ refers to modes of social life or organization which emerged in Europe from about the seventeenth century onwards and which subsequently became more or less worldwide in their influence.” We do not as yet, the author argues, live in a post-modern world. The distinctive characteristics of our major social institutions in the closing years of the twentieth century suggest that, rather than entering into a period of post-modernity, we are moving into a period of “high modernity” in which the consequences of modernity are becoming more radicalized and universalized than before. A post-modern social universe may eventualy come into being, but this as yet lies on the other side of the forms of social and cultural organization that currently dominate world history. In developing a fresh characterization of the nature of modernity, the author concentrates on the themes of security versus danger and on trust versus risk. Modernity is a double-edged phenomenon. The development of modern social institutions has created vastly greater opportunities for human beings to enjoy a secure and rewarding existencethan in any type of pre-modern system. But modernity also has a somber side that has become very important in the present century, such as the frequently degrading nature of modern industrial work, the growth of totalitarianism, the threat of environmentsal destruction,and the alrming development of military power and weaponry. The book builds upon the author’s pevious theoretical writings and will be of great interest to those who have followed his work through the years. However, this book covers issues the author has not previously analyzed and extends the scope of his work into areas of pressing practical concern.
Tadashi Fukutake - The Japanese Social Structure
The economic miracles of postwar Japan have been accompanied by equally overwhelming changes in the country's social structure. Professor Fukutake has written a lucid account of the evolution of Japanese society in the past century. He describes the changes and continuities in a society that has moved from feudalism to modernism in an extremely short time span, and seriously addresses the question of wether premodern people and social relations have evolved into modern people and social relations. The basic foundations of traditional society were firmly based in a patriarchal family system that required individuals to suppress their interests for the harmony of the family, community, or country. The modernization process, wich dates to the Meiji Restoration of 1868, was characterized by industrialization and urbanization, but the social structure as a whole continued to be dominated by peasant households and family enterprises, even in manufacturing and commerce. Postwar society was marked by rapid industrial growth, wich resulted in transformation of the agricultural sector, urbanization and an increase in the wage-earning population, and the development of mass society. Enormous gains were made in both material and social terms, but at heavy cost: the government's emphasis on economic growth has caused imbalances, and social development and improvement of the living environment still remain very low priorities. The problems that Japan faces today - inadequate social security, pensions, and welfare facilities in an aging society; labor force overqualification as more and more people become college-educated - have brought the country to a major turning point. Answers need to be found to the many questions posed in this book if Japan's citizens are to lead comfortable lives and grow old without regretting their longevity. Tadashi Fukutake, professor emeritus of the University of Tokyo, is director of the Social Development Research Institute, Tokyo. Ronald P. Dore is affiliated with the Technical Change Centre, London.
Henry George - Progress and Poverty
This classic work is an inquiry into the cause of industrial depressions and the persistence of poverty amid advancing wealth. Published in 1879, it was admired and advocated by great minds such as Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill, Leo Tolstoy and Sun Yat-sen in China. Henry George lived through a period of American history which witnessed the closing of the frontier, and he noticed the dramatic deterioration in the condition of labour once that happened. While land was freely available wages were high, once it was enclosed wages fell. Adam Smith appears not to have appreciated the full consequences of this, but he was writing before their full horror became evident in the form of landless peasants crowding into city slums, seeking work in "satanic mills" at minimum wages. Henry George, observing similar events in America (he was a journalist), saw the connection between land enclosure and poverty and unemployment. He also realized that the harmful effects could be rectified, without confiscating the land, through a change in the tax system and allowing market forces to work. This classic offers an alternative ethical and practical guide at a time when the collapse of the Marxist/Socialist experiment and the deep recession in the West leave many seeking fresh inspiration.
Bella Jewel - Pandemonium
I am the good girl, the one who does no wrong. Daughter to a ferocious and strong MC President, I know what protection feels like. Until one night changes everything - and not a single person in the world can protect me from it, not even my dad. Suffocating. Alone. Desperate. I let my problems live deep inside until there is no longer anywhere to run. I need an escape. Anything to make the pain go away. Trouble comes for me, and I don't fight it. I tried so hard to believe in what I was, But nobody understood. Not until him. Not until Lucas. He sees me. He believes in me. He refuses to let me drown. He’s my way out. My escape. But Lucas is forbidden. He’s a cop. I’m in danger. And my father is trying to protect what can’t be protected. There can only be one outcome. Pandemonium.
Duncan J. Watts - Everything is Obvious
Why is the Mona Lisa the most famous painting in the world? Why did Facebook succeed when other social networking sites failed? Did the surge in Iraq really lead to less violence? How much can CEO’s impact the performance of their companies? And does higher pay incentivize people to work hard? If you think the answers to these questions are a matter of common sense, think again. As sociologist and network science pioneer Duncan Watts explains in this provocative book, the explanations that we give for the outcomes that we observe in life—explanation that seem obvious once we know the answer—are less useful than they seem. Drawing on the latest scientific research, along with a wealth of historical and contemporary examples, Watts shows how common sense reasoning and history conspire to mislead us into believing that we understand more about the world of human behavior than we do; and in turn, why attempts to predict, manage, or manipulate social and economic systems so often go awry. It seems obvious, for example, that people respond to incentives; yet policy makers and managers alike frequently fail to anticipate how people will respond to the incentives they create. Social trends often seem to have been driven by certain influential people; yet marketers have been unable to identify these “influencers” in advance. And although successful products or companies always seem in retrospect to have succeeded because of their unique qualities, predicting the qualities of the next hit product or hot company is notoriously difficult even for experienced professionals. Only by understanding how and when common sense fails, Watts argues, can we improve how we plan for the future, as well as understand the present—an argument that has important implications in politics, business, and marketing, as well as in science and everyday life. "Mr. Watts, a former sociology professor and physicist who is now a researcher for Yahoo, has written a fascinating book that ranges through psychology, economics, marketing and the science of social networks.” - The Wall Street Journal “It’s about time a sociologist wrote an amazing and accessible book for a non-specialist audience. Everything Is Obvious*: Once You Know the Answer by Duncan J. Watts is that amazing book.” - Inside Higher Ed “In this bold thesis, renowned network scientist Duncan J. Watts exposes the complex mechanics of judgement and proposes a radical new way of thinking about human behaviour.” - Scott Wilson, The Fringe Magazine “Common sense is a kind of bespoke make-believe, and we can no more use it to scientifically explain the workings of the social world than we can use a hammer to understand mollusks.” - Nicholas Christakis, The New York Times “Everything is Obvious is engagingly written and sparkles with counter-intuitive insights. Its modesty about what can and cannot be known also compares favourably with other “big idea” books.” - James Crabtree, comment editor Financial Times "Every once in a while, a book comes along that forces us to re-examine what we know and how we know it. This is one of those books. And while it is not always pleasurable to realize the many ways in which we are wrong, it is useful to figure out the cases where our intuitions fail us." - Dan Ariely, James B. Duke Professor of Behavioral Economics at Duke University, and New York Times bestselling author of Predictably Irrational “A deep and insightful book that is a joy to read. There are new ideas on every page, and none of them is obvious!” - Daniel Gilbert, Professor of Psychology at Harvard University and author of Stumbling on Happiness "A brilliant account of why, for every hard question, there’s a common sense answer that’s simple, seductive, and spectacularly wrong. If you are suspicious of pop sociology, rogue economics, and didactic history – or, more importantly, if you aren’t! – Everything is Obvious is necessary reading. It will literally change the way you think." - Eric Klinenberg, Professor of Sociology. New York University "You have to take notice when common sense, the bedrock thing we’ve always counted on, is challenged brilliantly. Especially when something better than common sense is suggested. As we increasingly experience the world as a maddeningly complex blur, we need a new way of seeing. The fresh ideas in this book, like the invention of spectacles, help bring things into better focus." - Alan Alda “Everything is Obvious is indicated for managers, scholars, or anyone else tired of oversimplified, faulty explanations about how business, government, society and even sports work. Temporary side effects of reading Duncan Watts' tour de force include: light-headedness, a tendency to question one's colleagues, temporary doubt in one's own strategies. Long term effects include: Deeper insight into history, current events, corporate politics and any other human activity that involves more than one person at a time. Everything is Obvious is available without a prescription.” - Dalton Conley, Dean for the Social Sciences, New York University "A truly important work that's bound to rattle the cages of pseudo- and self-proclaimed experts in every field. If this book doesn't force you to re-examine what you're doing, something is wrong with you." - Guy Kawasaki, author of Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions, and co-founder of Alltop.com. "Watts brings science to life. A complicated, global, interconnected world, one which often overwhelms, is tamed by wit, skepticism, and the power to challenge conventional wisdom. The book will help you see patterns, where you might have thought chaos ruled." - Sudhir Venkatesh, William B. Ransford Professor of Sociology at Columbia University
Sherry Turkle - Reclaiming Conversation
Renowned media scholar Sherry Turkle investigates how a flight from conversation undermines our relationships, creativity, and productivity—and why reclaiming face-to-face conversation can help us regain lost ground. We live in a technological universe in which we are always communicating. And yet we have sacrificed conversation for mere connection. Preeminent author and researcher Sherry Turkle has been studying digital culture for over thirty years. Long an enthusiast for its possibilities, here she investigates a troubling consequence: at work, at home, in politics, and in love, we find ways around conversation, tempted by the possibilities of a text or an email in which we don’t have to look, listen, or reveal ourselves. We develop a taste for what mere connection offers. The dinner table falls silent as children compete with phones for their parents’ attention. Friends learn strategies to keep conversations going when only a few people are looking up from their phones. At work, we retreat to our screens although it is conversation at the water cooler that increases not only productivity but commitment to work. Online, we only want to share opinions that our followers will agree with – a politics that shies away from the real conflicts and solutions of the public square. The case for conversation begins with the necessary conversations of solitude and self-reflection. They are endangered: these days, always connected, we see loneliness as a problem that technology should solve. Afraid of being alone, we rely on other people to give us a sense of ourselves, and our capacity for empathy and relationship suffers. We see the costs of the flight from conversation everywhere: conversation is the cornerstone for democracy and in business it is good for the bottom line. In the private sphere, it builds empathy, friendship, love, learning, and productivity. But there is good news: we are resilient. Conversation cures. Based on five years of research and interviews in homes, schools, and the workplace, Turkle argues that we have come to a better understanding of where our technology can and cannot take us and that the time is right to reclaim conversation. The most human—and humanizing—thing that we do. The virtues of person-to-person conversation are timeless, and our most basic technology, talk, responds to our modern challenges. We have everything we need to start, we have each other.
Robert B. Cialdini - Influence
Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say "yes"—and how to apply these understandings. Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book. You'll learn the six universal principles, how to use them to become a skilled persuader—and how to defend yourself against them. Perfect for people in all walks of life, the principles of Influence will move you toward profound personal change and act as a driving force for your success.