The Last Stand of Fox Company: A True Story of U.S. Marines in Combat
Bob Drury - 2008
Their only chance for survival is to fight their way south through the Toktong Pass, a narrow gorge that will need to be held open at all costs. The mission is handed to Captain William Barber and the 234 Marines of Fox Company, a courageous but undermanned unit of the First Marines. Barber and his men climb seven miles of frozen terrain to a rocky promontory overlooking the pass, where they will endure four days and five nights of nearly continuous Chinese attempts to take Fox Hill. Amid the relentless violence, three-quarters of Fox’s Marines are killed, wounded, or captured. Just when it looks like the outfit will be overrun, Lt. Colonel Raymond Davis, a fearless Marine officer who is fighting south from Chosin, volunteers to lead a daring mission that cuts a hole in the Chinese lines and relieves the men of Fox. This is a fast-paced and gripping account of heroism and sacrifice in the face of impossible odds.
Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II
Douglas A. Blackmon - 2008
Blackmon brings to light one of the most shameful chapters in American history—an “Age of Neoslavery” that thrived from the aftermath of the Civil War through the dawn of World War II.Under laws enacted specifically to intimidate blacks, tens of thousands of African Americans were arbitrarily arrested, hit with outrageous fines, and charged for the costs of their own arrests. With no means to pay these ostensible “debts,” prisoners were sold as forced laborers to coal mines, lumber camps, brickyards, railroads, quarries, and farm plantations. Thousands of other African Americans were simply seized by southern landowners and compelled into years of involuntary servitude. Government officials leased falsely imprisoned blacks to small-town entrepreneurs, provincial farmers, and dozens of corporations—including U.S. Steel—looking for cheap and abundant labor. Armies of “free” black men labored without compensation, were repeatedly bought and sold, and were forced through beatings and physical torture to do the bidding of white masters for decades after the official abolition of American slavery.The neoslavery system exploited legal loopholes and federal policies that discouraged prosecution of whites for continuing to hold black workers against their wills. As it poured millions of dollars into southern government treasuries, the new slavery also became a key instrument in the terrorization of African Americans seeking full participation in the U.S. political system.Based on a vast record of original documents and personal narratives, Slavery by Another Name unearths the lost stories of slaves and their descendants who journeyed into freedom after the Emancipation Proclamation and then back into the shadow of involuntary servitude. It also reveals the stories of those who fought unsuccessfully against the re-emergence of human labor trafficking, the modern companies that profited most from neoslavery, and the system’s final demise in the 1940s, partly due to fears of enemy propaganda about American racial abuse at the beginning of World War II.Slavery by Another Name is a moving, sobering account of a little-known crime against African Americans, and the insidious legacy of racism that reverberates today.
Mirrors: Stories of Almost Everyone
Eduardo Galeano - 2008
Isabelle Allende said his works “invade the reader’s mind, to persuade him or her to surrender to the charm of his writing and power of his idealism.”Mirrors, Galeano’s most ambitious project since Memory of Fire, is an unofficial history of the world seen through history’s unseen, unheard, and forgotten. As Galeano notes: “Official history has it that Vasco Núñez de Balboa was the first man to see, from a summit in Panama, the two oceans at once. Were the people who lived there blind??”Recalling the lives of artists, writers, gods, and visionaries, from the Garden of Eden to twenty-first-century New York, of the black slaves who built the White House and the women erased by men’s fears, and told in hundreds of kaleidoscopic vignettes, Mirrors is a magic mosaic of our humanity.
American Buffalo: In Search of a Lost Icon
Steven Rinella - 2008
Throughout these adventures, Rinella found himself contemplating his own place among the 14,000 years’ worth of buffalo hunters in North America, as well as the buffalo’s place in the American experience. At the time of the Revolutionary War, North America was home to approximately 40 million buffalo, the largest herd of big mammals on the planet, but by the mid-1890s only a few hundred remained. Now that the buffalo is on the verge of a dramatic ecological recovery across the West, Americans are faced with the challenge of how, and if, we can dare to share our land with a beast that is the embodiment of the American wilderness. American Buffalo is a narrative tale of Rinella’s hunt. But beyond that, it is the story of the many ways in which the buffalo has shaped our national identity. Rinella takes us across the continent in search of the buffalo’s past, present, and future: to the Bering Land Bridge, where scientists search for buffalo bones amid artifacts of the New World’s earliest human inhabitants; to buffalo jumps where Native Americans once ran buffalo over cliffs by the thousands; to the Detroit Carbon works, a “bone charcoal” plant that made fortunes in the late 1800s by turning millions of tons of buffalo bones into bone meal, black dye, and fine china; and even to an abattoir turned fashion mecca in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District, where a depressed buffalo named Black Diamond met his fate after serving as the model for the American nickel. Rinella’s erudition and exuberance, combined with his gift for storytelling, make him the perfect guide for a book that combines outdoor adventure with a quirky blend of facts and observations about history, biology, and the natural world. Both a captivating narrative and a book of environmental and historical significance, American Buffalo tells us as much about ourselves as Americans as it does about the creature who perhaps best of all embodies the American ethos.
Remember Us: My Journey from the Shtetl Through the Holocaust
Martin Small - 2008
All this is torn apart with the arrival of the Holocaust, beginning a crucible fraught with twists and turns so unpredictable and surprising that they defy any attempt to find reason within them. From work camps to the partisans of the Nowogrudek forests, from the Mauthausen concentration camp to life as a displaced person in Italy, and from fighting the Egyptian army in a tiny Israeli kibbutz in 1948 to starting a new life in a new world in New York, this book encompasses the mythical “hero’s journey” in very real historical events. Through the eyes of 91-year-old Holocaust survivor Martin Small, we learn that these priceless memories that are too painful to remember are also too painful to forget.
The Alchemy of Air: A Jewish Genius, a Doomed Tycoon, and the Scientific Discovery That Fed the World but Fueled the Rise of Hitler
Thomas Hager - 2008
Mass starvation, long predicted for the fast-growing population, was about to become a reality. A call went out to the world’s scientists to find a solution. This is the story of the two enormously gifted, fatally flawed men who found it: the brilliant, self-important Fritz Haber and the reclusive, alcoholic Carl Bosch. Together they discovered a way to make bread out of air, built city-sized factories, controlled world markets, and saved millions of lives. Their invention continues to feed us today; without it, more than two billion people would starve.But their epochal triumph came at a price we are still paying. The Haber-Bosch process was also used to make the gunpowder and high explosives that killed millions during the two world wars. Both men were vilified during their lives; both, disillusioned and disgraced, died tragically. Today we face the other unintended consequences of their discovery—massive nitrogen pollution and a growing pandemic of obesity.The Alchemy of Air is the extraordinary, previously untold story of two master scientists who saved the world only to lose everything and of the unforseen results of a discovery that continues to shape our lives in the most fundamental and dramatic of ways.
JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters
James W. Douglass - 2008
Kennedy was assassinated and why the unmasking of this truth remains crucial for the future of our country and the world.
The Last Campaign: Robert F. Kennedy and 82 Days That Inspired America
Thurston Clarke - 2008
Kennedy's assassination, Robert Kennedy--formerly Jack's no-holds-barred political warrior--almost lost hope. He was haunted by his brother's murder, and by the nation's seeming inabilities to solve its problems of race, poverty, and the war in Vietnam. Bobby sensed the country's pain, and when he announced that he was running for president, the country united behind his hopes. Over the action-packed eighty-two days of his campaign, Americans were inspired by Kennedy's promise to lead them toward a better time. And after an assassin's bullet stopped this last great stirring public figure of the 1960s, crowds lined up along the country's railroad tracks to say goodbye to Bobby. With new research, interviews, and an intimate sense of Kennedy, Thurston Clarke provides an absorbing historical narrative that goes right to the heart of America's deepest despairs--and most fiercely held dreams--and tells us more than we had understood before about this complicated man and the heightened personal, racial, political, and national dramas of his times.
Easy Company Soldier: The Legendary Battles of a Sergeant from World War II's "Band of Brothers"
Don Malarkey - 2008
Don Malarkey takes us not only into the battles fought from Normandy to Germany, but into the heart and mind of a soldier who beat the odds to become an elite paratrooper, and lost his best friend during the nightmarish engagement at Bastogne. Drafted in 1942, Malarkey arrived at Camp Toccoa in Georgia and was one of the one in six soldiers who earned their Eagle wings. He went to England in 1943 to provide cover on the ground for the largest amphibious military attack in history: Operation Overlord.In the darkness of D-day morning, Malarkey parachuted into France and within days was awarded a Bronze Star for his heroism in battle. He fought for twenty-three days in Normandy, nearly eighty in Holland, thirty-nine in Bastogne, and nearly thirty more in and near Haugenau, France, and the Ruhr pocket in Germany.This is his dramatic tale of those bloody days fighting his way from the shores of France to the heartland of Germany, and the epic story of how an adventurous kid from Oregon became a leader of men.
Apache. Ed Macy
Ed Macy - 2008
An astonishing first book, Apache is a story of courage, comradeship, technology and tragedy, during the ongoing war in Afghanistan.
Chasing The Flame: Sergio Vieira de Mello and the Fight to Save the World
Samantha Power - 2008
Sergio Vieira de Mello was born in 1948, just as the post-World War II order was taking shape, and died in a terrorist attack on UN Headquarters in Iraq in 2003, just as the battle lines in the 21st century's great struggle were being drawn.
Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America
Rick Perlstein - 2008
Perlstein's account begins with the '65 Watts riots, nine months after Johnson's landslide victory over Goldwater appeared to herald a permanent liberal consensus. Yet the next year, scores of liberals were tossed from Congress, America was more divided than ever & a disgraced politician was on his way to a shocking comeback. Between '65 & '72, America experienced a 2nd civil war. From its ashes, today's political world was born. It was the era not only of Nixon, Johnson, Agnew, Humphrey, McGovern, Daley & Geo Wallace but Abbie Hoffman, Ronald Reagan, Angela Davis, Ted Kennedy, Chas Manson, John Lindsay & Jane Fonda. There are glimpses of Jimmy Carter, Geo H.W. Bush, Jesse Jackson, John Kerry & even of two ambitious young men named Karl Rove & Bill Clinton--& an unambitious young man named Geo W. Bush. Cataclysms tell the story: Blacks trashing their neighborhoods. White suburbanites wielding shotguns. Student insurgency over the Vietnam War. The assassinations of Rbt F. Kennedy & Martin Luther King. The riots at the '68 Democratic Nat'l Convention. The fissuring of the Democrats into warring factions manipulated by the dirty tricks of Nixon & his Committee to ReElect the President. Nixon pledging a dawn of nat'l unity, governing more divisively than any president before him, then directing a criminal conspiracy, the Watergate cover-up, from the Oval Office. Then, in 11/72, Nixon, harvesting the bitterness & resentment born of turmoil, was reelected in a landslide, not only setting the stage for his '74 resignation but defining the terms of the ideological divide characterizing America today. Filled with prodigious research, driven by a powerful narrative, Perlstein's account of how America divided confirms his place as one of our country's most celebrated historians.
Philip Freeman - 2008
He shaped Rome for generations, and his name became a synonym for "emperor" -- not only in Rome but as far away as Germany and Russia. He is best known as the general who defeated the Gauls and doubled the size of Rome's territories. But, as Philip Freeman describes in this fascinating new biography, Caesar was also a brilliant orator, an accomplished writer, a skilled politician, and much more.Julius Caesar was a complex man, both hero and villain. He possessed great courage, ambition, honor, and vanity. Born into a noble family that had long been in decline, he advanced his career cunningly, beginning as a priest and eventually becoming Rome's leading general. He made alliances with his rivals and then discarded them when it suited him. He was a spokesman for the ordinary people of Rome, who rallied around him time and again, but he profited enormously from his conquests and lived opulently. Eventually he was murdered in one of the most famous assassinations in history.Caesar's contemporaries included some of Rome's most famous figures, from the generals Marius, Sulla, and Pompey to the orator and legislator Cicero as well as the young politicians Mark Antony and Octavius (later Caesar Augustus). Caesar's legendary romance with the Egyptian queen Cleopatra still fascinates us today.In this splendid biography, Freeman presents Caesar in all his dimensions and contradictions. With remarkable clarity and brevity, Freeman shows how Caesar dominated a newly powerful Rome and shaped its destiny. This book will captivate readers discovering Caesar and ancient Rome for the first time as well as those who have a deep interest in the classical world.
The Landmark Thucydides: A Comprehensive Guide to the Peloponnesian War
Thucydides - 2008
Considered essential reading for generals, statesmen, and liberally educated citizens for more than 2,000 years, The Peloponnesian War is a mine of military, moral, political, and philosophical wisdom.However, this classic book has long presented obstacles to the uninitiated reader. Written centuries before the rise of modern historiography, Thucydides' narrative is not continuous or linear. His authoritative chronicle of what he considered the greatest war of all time is rigorous and meticulous, yet omits the many aids to comprehension modern readers take for granted—such as brief biographies of the story's main characters, maps and other visual enhancements, and background on the military, cultural, and political traditions of ancient Greece.Robert Strassler's new edition amends these omissions, and not only provides a new coherence to the narrative overall but effectively reconstructs the lost cultural context that Thucydides shared with his original audience. Based on the venerable Richard Crawley translation, updated and revised for modern readers, The Landmark Thucydides includes a vast array of superbly designed and presented maps, brief informative appendices by outstanding classical scholars on subjects of special relevance to the text, explanatory marginal notes on each page, an index of unprecedented subtlety and depth, and numerous other useful features. Readers will find that with this edition they can dip into the text at any point and be immediately oriented with regard to the geography, season, date, and stage of the conflict.In any list of the Great Books of Western Civilization, The Peloponnesian War stands near the top. This handsome, elegant, and authoritative new edition will ensure that its greatness is appreciated by future generations.
Final Salute: A Story of Unfinished Lives
Jim Sheeler - 2008
It begins with a knock at the door. “The curtains pull away. They come to the door. And they know. They always know,” said Major Steve Beck. Since the start of the war in Iraq, Marines like Major Beck found themselves thrown into a different kind of mission: casualty notification. It is a job Major Beck never asked for and one for which he received no training. They are given no set rules, only impersonal guidelines. Marines are trained to kill, to break down doors, but casualty notification is a mission without weapons. For Beck, the mission meant learning each dead Marine’s name and nickname, touching the toys they grew up with and reading the letters they wrote home. He held grieving mothers in long embraces, absorbing their muffled cries into the dark blue shoulder of his uniform. He stitched himself into the fabric of their lives, in the simple hope that his compassion might help alleviate at least the smallest piece of their pain. Sometimes he returned home to his own family unable to keep from crying in the dark. In Final Salute, Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Jim Sheeler weaves together the stories of the fallen and of the broken homes they have left behind. It is also the story of Major Steve Beck and his unflagging efforts to help heal the wounds of those left grieving. Above all, it is a moving tribute to our troops, putting faces to the mostly anonymous names of our courageous heroes, and to the brave families who have made the ultimate sacrifice for this country. Final Salute is the achingly beautiful, devastatingly honest story of the true toll of war. After the knock on the door, the story has only begun.
Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood
Mark Harris - 2008
Explores the epic human drama behind the making of the five movies nominated for Best Picture in 1967-Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, The Graduate, In the Heat of the Night, Doctor Doolittle, and Bonnie and Clyde-and through them, the larger story of the cultural revolution that transformed Hollywood, and America, forever.
The Girl in the Green Sweater: A Life in Holocaust's Shadow
Krystyna Chiger - 2008
The last surviving member this group, Krystyna Chiger, shares one of the most intimate, harrowing and ultimately triumphant tales of survival to emerge from the Holocaust. The Girl in the Green Sweater is Chiger's harrowing first-person account of the fourteen months she spent with her family in the fetid, underground sewers of Lvov.The Girl in the Green Sweater is also the story of Leopold Socha, the group's unlikely savior. A Polish Catholic and former thief, Socha risked his life to help Chiger's underground family survive, bringing them food, medicine, and supplies. A moving memoir of a desperate escape and life under unimaginable circumstances, The Girl in the Green Sweater is ultimately a tale of intimate survival, friendship, and redemption.
Clara Kramer - 2008
Three years later, in the small town of Żółkiew, life for Jewish 15-year-old Clara Kramer was never to be the same again. While those around her were either slaughtered or transported, Clara and her family hid perilously in a hand-dug cellar. Living above and protecting them were the Becks.Mr. Beck was a womaniser, a drunkard and a self-professed anti-Semite, yet he risked his life throughout the war to keep his charges safe. Nevertheless, life with Mr. Beck was far from predictable. From the house catching fire, to Beck's affair with Clara's cousin, to the nightly SS drinking sessions in the room just above, Clara's War transports you into the dark, cramped bunker, and sits you next to the families as they hold their breath time and again.Sixty years later, Clara Kramer has created a memoir that is lyrical, dramatic and heartbreakingly compelling. Despite the worst of circumstances, this is a story full of hope and survival, courage and love.
Conquistador: Hernán Cortés, King Montezuma, and the Last Stand of the Aztecs
Buddy Levy - 2008
“I and my companions suffer from a disease of the heart which can be cured only with gold.” —Hernán CortésIt was a moment unique in human history, the face-to-face meeting between two men from civilizations a world apart. Only one would survive the encounter. In 1519, Hernán Cortés arrived on the shores of Mexico with a roughshod crew of adventurers and the intent to expand the Spanish empire. Along the way, this brash and roguish conquistador schemed to convert the native inhabitants to Catholicism and carry off a fortune in gold. That he saw nothing paradoxical in his intentions is one of the most remarkable—and tragic—aspects of this unforgettable story of conquest.In Tenochtitlán, the famed City of Dreams, Cortés met his Aztec counterpart, Montezuma: king, divinity, ruler of fifteen million people, and commander of the most powerful military machine in the Americas. Yet in less than two years, Cortés defeated the entire Aztec nation in one of the most astonishing military campaigns ever waged. Sometimes outnumbered in battle thousands-to-one, Cortés repeatedly beat seemingly impossible odds. Buddy Levy meticulously researches the mix of cunning, courage, brutality, superstition, and finally disease that enabled Cortés and his men to survive.Conquistador is the story of a lost kingdom—a complex and sophisticated civilization where floating gardens, immense wealth, and reverence for art stood side by side with bloodstained temples and gruesome rites of human sacrifice. It’s the story of Montezuma—proud, spiritual, enigmatic, and doomed to misunderstand the stranger he thought a god. Epic in scope, as entertaining as it is enlightening, Conquistador is history at its most riveting.From the Hardcover edition.
The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals
Jane Mayer - 2008
The radical decisions about how to combat terrorists and strengthen national security were made in a state of utter chaos and fear, but the key players, Vice President Dick Cheney and his powerful, secretive adviser David Addington, used the crisis to further a long held agenda to enhance Presidential powers to a degree never known in U.S. history, and obliterate Constitutional protections that define the very essence of the American experiment.The Dark Side is a dramatic, riveting, and definitive narrative account of how the United States made terrible decisions in the pursuit of terrorists around the world-- decisions that not only violated the Constitution to which White House officials took an oath to uphold, but also hampered the pursuit of Al Qaeda. In gripping detail, acclaimed New Yorker writer and bestselling author, Jane Mayer, relates the impact of these decisions—U.S.-held prisoners, some of them completely innocent, were subjected to treatment more reminiscent of the Spanish Inquisition than the twenty-first century.The Dark Side will chronicle real, specific cases, shown in real time against the larger tableau of what was happening in Washington, looking at the intelligence gained—or not—and the price paid. In some instances, torture worked. In many more, it led to false information, sometimes with devastating results. For instance, there is the stunning admission of one of the detainees, Sheikh Ibn al-Libi, that the confession he gave under duress—which provided a key piece of evidence buttressing congressional support of going to war against Iraq--was in fact fabricated, to make the torture stop.In all cases, whatever the short term gains, there were incalculable losses in terms of moral standing, and our country's place in the world, and its sense of itself. The Dark Side chronicles one of the most disturbing chapters in American history, one that will serve as the lasting legacy of the George W. Bush presidency.
The Tudor Chronicles: 1485-1603
Susan Doran - 2008
Defined by the iconic figure of the virgin queen – Elizabeth I – it witnessed the end of the dynastic uncertainties of the Wars of the Roses, the creation and triumph of the Protestant Church; the successful repulsion of a foreign invader and the beginnings of the adventure of empire; the blossoming of a sublimely gifted generation of musical composers, including Thomas Tallis and William Byrd; and the flowering of English poetry and drama, culminating in the glories of Ben Jonson, Christopher Marlowe and William Shakespeare. But it was also a period wracked by rebellion, invasion scares, sectarian strife, and – increasingly – by worries about dynastic succession.The Tudor Chronicles is a compelling, year-by-year chronology of this tumultuous and critical period in the development of the modern English nation. Each year is covered by a concise, informative and accessible narrative, amplified by extensive quotations from contemporary sources and accompanied by generously captioned and stunning images of the period – including portraits, maps, illuminations, royal seals, tapestries and other artifacts.Authoritative, informative and sumptuous, and compiled by a scholar who is steeped in knowledge of the period, The Tudor Chronicles brings a glorious era of English history dramatically and vividly to life. It is the perfect gift book for anyone with a love of, or fascination for, 16th-century English history.
Do the Birds Still Sing in Hell?
Horace Greasley - 2008
There had been whispers and murmurs of discontent from certain quarters and the British government began to prepare for the inevitable war. After seven weeks training with the 2nd/5th Battalion Leicester, he found himself facing the might of the German army in a muddy field in Northern France, with just 30 rounds of ammunition in his weapon pouch. Horace's war didn't last long. He was taken prisoner on May 25th, 1940 and forced to endure a 10 week march across France and Belgium en route to Holland. Horace survived, barely, but many of his comrades were not so fortunate. Falling by the side of the road through exhaustion and malnourishment meant a bullet through the back of the head and the corpse left to rot. After a three day train journey without food and water, Horace found himself incarcerated in a prison camp in Poland. It was there he embarked on an incredible love affair with a German girl interpreting for his captors. He experienced the sweet taste of freedom each time he escaped to see her, yet incredibly he made his way back into the camp each time—sometimes two or three times a week. He broke out of the camp more than 200 times, often bringing food back to his fellow prisoners to supplement their meager rations, and toward the end of the war even managed to bring radio parts back in, allowing the BBC news to be delivered daily to more than 3,000 prisoners.
Mr. Adams's Last Crusade: The Extraordinary Post-presidential Life of John Quincy Adams
Joseph Wheelan - 2008
Rather than retire, the sixty-two-year-old former president, U.S. senator, secretary of state, and Harvard professor was elected by his Massachusetts friends and neighbors to the House of Representatives to throw off the "incubus of Jacksonianism." It was the opening chapter in what was arguably the most remarkable post-presidency in American history. In this engaging biography, historian Joseph Wheelan describes Adams's battles against the House Gag Rule that banished abolition petitions; the removal of Eastern Indian tribes; and the annexation of slave-holding Texas, while recounting his efforts to establish the Smithsonian Institution. As a "man of the whole country," Adams was not bound by political party, yet was reelected to the House eight times before collapsing at his "post of duty" on February 21, 1848, and then dying in the House Speaker's office. His funeral evoked the greatest public outpouring since Benjamin Franklin's death.Mr. Adams's Last Crusade will enlighten and delight anyone interested in American history.
The Candy Bombers: The Untold Story of the Berlin Airlift and America's Finest Hour
Andrei Cherny - 2008
In the tradition of the best narrative storytellers, he brings together newly unclassified documents, unpublished letters and diaries, and fresh primary interviews to tell the story of the ill-assorted group of castoffs and second-stringers who not only saved millions of desperate people from a dire threat but changed how the world viewed the United States, and set in motion the chain of events that would ultimately lead to the dismantling of the Berlin Wall and to America's victory in the Cold War.On June 24, 1948, intent on furthering its domination of Europe, the Soviet Union cut off all access to West Berlin, prepared to starve the city into submission unless the Americans abandoned it. Soviet forces hugely outnumbered the Allies', and most of America's top officials considered the situation hopeless. But not all of them.Harry Truman, an accidental president, derided by his own party; Lucius Clay, a frustrated general, denied a combat command and relegated to the home front; Bill Tunner, a logistics expert downsized to a desk job in a corner of the Pentagon; James Forrestal, a secretary of defense beginning to mentally unravel; Hal Halvorsen, a lovesick pilot who had served far from the conflict, flying transport missions in the backwater of a global war—together these unlikely men improvised and stumbled their way into a uniquely American combination of military and moral force unprecedented in its time.This is the forgotten foundation tale of America in the modern world, the story of when Americans learned, for the first time, how to act at the summit of world power—a masterful and exciting work of historical narrative, and one with strong resonance for our time.
David Hackett Fischer - 2008
The historical record is unclear on whether Champlain was baptized Protestant or Catholic, but he fought in France's religious wars for the man who would become Henri IV, one of France's greatest kings, and like Henri, he was religiously tolerant in an age of murderous sectarianism. Champlain was also a brilliant navigator. He went to sea as a boy and over time acquired the skills that allowed him to make twenty-seven Atlantic crossings without losing a ship.But we remember Champlain mainly as a great explorer. On foot and by ship and canoe, he traveled through what are now six Canadian provinces and five American states. Over more than thirty years he founded, colonized, and administered French settlements in North America. Sailing frequently between France and Canada, he maneuvered through court intrigue in Paris and negotiated among more than a dozen Indian nations in North America to establish New France. Champlain had early support from Henri IV and later Louis XIII, but the Queen Regent Marie de Medici and Cardinal Richelieu opposed his efforts. Despite much resistance and many defeats, Champlain, by his astonishing dedication and stamina, finally established France's New World colony. He tried constantly to maintain peace among Indian nations that were sometimes at war with one another, but when he had to, he took up arms and forcefully imposed a new balance of power, proving himself a formidable strategist and warrior.Throughout his three decades in North America, Champlain remained committed to a remarkable vision, a Grand Design for France's colony. He encouraged intermarriage among the French colonists and the natives, and he insisted on tolerance for Protestants. He was a visionary leader, especially when compared to his English and Spanish contemporaries -- a man who dreamed of humanity and peace in a world of cruelty and violence.This superb biography, the first in decades, is as dramatic and exciting as the life it portrays. Deeply researched, it is illustrated throughout with many contemporary images and maps, including several drawn by Champlain himself.
Susan Stryker - 2008
Chapters cover the transsexual and transvestite communities in the years following World War II; trans radicalism and social change, which spanned from 1966 with the publication of The Transsexual Phenomenon, and lasted through the early 1970s; the mid-'70s to 1990-the era of identity politics and the changes witnessed in trans circles through these years; and the gender issues witnessed through the '90s and '00s. Transgender History includes informative sidebars highlighting quotes from major texts and speeches in transgender history and brief biographies of key players, plus excerpts from transgender memoirs and discussion of treatments of transgenderism in popular culture.
Inverting the Pyramid: The History of Football Tactics
Jonathan Wilson - 2008
Along the way, author Jonathan Wilson, an erudite and detailed writer who never loses a sense of the grand narrative sweep, takes a look at the lives of the great players and thinkers who shaped the game, and discovers why the English in particular have proved themselves so “unwilling to grapple with the abstract.” This is a modern classic of soccer writing that followers of the game will dip into again and again.
Dan Carlin - 2008
Was it geopolitics or simply bitter hatred that fueled the ancient bloodbaths known as “The Punic Wars”? Dan highlights the unimaginable things people experienced during this intense face-off between Rome and Carthage.
The Holocaust by Bullets: A Priest's Journey to Uncover the Truth Behind the Murder of 1.5 Million Jews
Patrick Desbois - 2008
'The Holocaust by Bullets' tells the poignant story of how a Catholic priest uncovered the truth behind the murder of one and a half million Ukrainian Jews.
Playing the Enemy: Nelson Mandela and the Game That Made a Nation
John Carlin - 2008
First he earned his freedom and then he won the presidency in the nation's first free election in 1994. But he knew that South Africa was still dangerously divided by almost fifty years of apartheid. If he couldn't unite his country in a visceral, emotional way--and fast--it would collapse into chaos. He would need all the charisma and strategic acumen he had honed during half a century of activism, and he'd need a cause all South Africans could share. Mandela picked one of the more farfetched causes imaginable--the national rugby team, the Springboks, who would host the sport's World Cup in 1995.Against the giants of the sport, the Springboks' chances of victory were remote. But their chances of capturing the hearts of most South Africans seemed remoter still, as they had long been the embodiment of white supremacist rule. During apartheid, the all-white Springboks and their fans had belted out racist fight songs, and blacks would come to Springbok matches to cheer for whatever team was playing against them. Yet Mandela believed that the Springboks could embody--and engage--the new South Africa. And the Springboks themselves embraced the scheme. Soon South African TV would carry images of the team singing "Nkosi Sikelele Afrika," the longtime anthem of black resistance to apartheid.As their surprising string of victories lengthened, their home-field advantage grew exponentially. South Africans of every color and political stripe found themselves falling for the team. When the Springboks took to the field for the championship match against New Zealand's heavily favored squad, Mandela sat in his presidential box wearing a Springbok jersey while sixty-two-thousand fans, mostly white, chanted "Nelson! Nelson!" Millions more gathered around their TV sets, whether in dusty black townships or leafy white suburbs, to urge their team toward victory. The Springboks won a nail-biter that day, defying the oddsmakers and capping Mandela's miraculous ten-year-long effort to bring forty-three million South Africans together in an enduring bond.John Carlin, a former South Africa bureau chief for the London Independent, offers a singular portrait of the greatest statesman of our time in action, blending the volatile cocktail of race, sport, and politics to intoxicating effect. He draws on extensive interviews with Mandela, Desmond Tutu, and dozens of other South Africans caught up in Mandela's momentous campaign, and the Springboks' unlikely triumph. As he makes stirringly clear, their championship transcended the mere thrill of victory to erase ancient hatreds and make a nation whole.
Hitler's Empire: How the Nazis Ruled Europe
Mark Mazower - 2008
Control of this vast territory was meant to provide the basis for Germany's rise to unquestioned world power. Eastern Europe was to be the Reich's Wild West, transformed by massacre and colonial settlement. Western Europe was to provide the economic resources that would knit an authoritarian and racially cleansed continent together. But the brutality and short-sightedness of Nazi politics lost what German arms had won and brought their equally rapid downfall.Time and again, the speed of the Germans' victories caught them unprepared for the economic or psychological intricacies of running such a far-flung dominion. Politically impoverished, they had no idea how to rule the millions of people they suddenly controlled, except by bludgeon.Mazower forces us to set aside the timeworn notion that the Nazis' worldview was their own invention. Their desire for land and their racist attitudes toward Slavs and other nationalities emerged from ideas that had driven their Prussian forebears into Poland and beyond. They also drew inspiration on imperial expansion from the Americans and especially the British, whose empire they idolized. Their signal innovation was to exploit Europe's peoples and resources much as the British or French had done in India and Africa. Crushed and disheartened, many of the peoples they conquered collaborated with them to a degree that we have largely forgotten. Ultimately, the Third Reich would be beaten as much by its own hand as by the enemy.Throughout this book are fascinating, chilling glimpses of the world that might have been. Russians, Poles, and other ethnic groups would have been slaughtered or enslaved. Germans would have been settled upon now empty lands as far east as the Black Sea—the new "Greater Germany". Europe's treasuries would have been sacked, its great cities impoverished and recast as dormitories for forced laborers when they were not deliberately demolished. As dire as all this sounds, it was merely the planned extension of what actually happened in Europe under Nazi rule as recounted in this authoritative, absorbing book.
The Beauty and the Sorrow: An Intimate History of the First World War
Peter Englund - 2008
Describing the experiences of twenty ordinary people from around the world, all now unknown, he explores the everyday aspects of war: not only the tragedy and horror, but also the absurdity, monotony and even beauty. Two of these twenty will perish, two will become prisoners of war, two will become celebrated heroes and two others end up as physical wrecks. One of them goes mad, another will never hear a shot fired.Following soldiers and sailors, nurses and government workers, from Britain, Russia, Germany, Australia and South America - and in theatres of war often neglected by major histories on the period - Englund reconstructs their feelings, impressions, experiences and moods. This is a piece of anti-history: it brings this epoch-making event back to its smallest component, the individual.
Blood and Guts: A History of Surgery
Richard Hollingham - 2008
But getting here has not been a simple story of selfless men working tirelessly in the pursuit of medical advancement. Instead it's a bloodstained tale of blunders, arrogance, mishap and murder. In trying to keep us alive, surgeons have all too often killed us off, and life-saving solutions have often come from the most surprising places. Accompanying a major BBC series, "Blood and Guts" is an incredible story of stolen corpses, medical fraud, lobotomized patients - and every now and then courageous advances that have saved the lives of millions around the world. You may think twice before going under the knife.
Empires of the Indus: The Story of a River
Alice Albinia - 2008
For millennia it has been worshipped as a god; for centuries used as a tool of imperial expansion; today it is the cement of Pakistans fractious union. Five thousand years ago, a string of sophisticated cities grew and traded on its banks. In the ruins of these elaborate metropolises, Sanskrit-speaking nomads explored the river, extolling its virtues in Indias most ancient text, the Rig-Veda. During the past two thousand years a series of invaders Alexander the Great, Afghan Sultans, the British Raj made conquering the Indus valley their quixotic mission. For the people of the river, meanwhile, the Indus valley became a nodal point on the Silk Road, a centre of Sufi pilgrimage and the birthplace of Sikhism. Empires of the Indus follows the river upstream and back in time, taking the reader on a voyage through two thousand miles of geography and more than five millennia of history redolent with contemporary importance.
Big History: The Big Bang, Life On Earth, And The Rise Of Humanity
David Christian - 2008
David Christian, professor of history at San Diego State University, surveys the past at all possible scales, from conventional history, to the much larger scales of biology and geology, to the universal scales of cosmology.
Ida: A Sword Among Lions
Paula J. Giddings - 2008
Wells (1862-1931), born to slaves in Mississippi, who began her activist career by refusing to leave a first-class ladies’ car on a Memphis railway and rose to lead the nation’s firstcampaign against lynching. For Wells the key to the rise in violence was embedded in attitudes not only about black men but about women and sexuality as well. Her independent perspective and percussive personality gained her encomiums as a hero -- as well as aspersions on her character and threats of death. Exiled from the South by 1892, Wells subsequently took her campaign across the country and throughout the British Isles before she married and settled in Chicago, where she continued her activism as a journalist, suffragist, and independent candidate in the rough-and-tumble world of the Windy City’s politics.In this eagerly awaited biography by Paula J. Giddings, author of the groundbreaking book When and Where I Enter, which traced the activisthistory of black women in America, the irrepressible personality of Ida B. Wells surges out of the pages. With meticulous research and vivid rendering of her subject, Giddings also provides compelling portraits of twentieth-century progressive luminaries, black and white, with whom Wells worked during some of the most tumultuous periods in American history. Embattled all of her activist life, Wells found herself fighting not only conservative adversaries but icons of the civil rights and women’s suffrage movements who sought to undermine her place in history.In this definitive biography, which places Ida B. Wells firmly in the context of her times as well as ours, Giddings at long last gives this visionary reformer her due and, in the process, sheds light on an aspect of our history that isoften left in the shadows.
The Forever War
Dexter Filkins - 2008
We go into the homes of suicide bombers and into street-to-street fighting with a battalion of marines. We meet Iraqi insurgents, an American captain who loses a quarter of his men in eight days, and a young soldier from Georgia on a rooftop at midnight reminiscing about his girlfriend back home. A car bomb explodes, bullets fly, and a mother cradles her blinded son.Like no other book, The Forever War allows us a visceral understanding of today’s battlefields and of the experiences of the people on the ground, warriors and innocents alike. It is a brilliant, fearless work, not just about America’s wars after 9/11, but ultimately about the nature of war itself.
Who Was Abraham Lincoln?
Janet B. Pascal - 2008
But Lincoln was tragically shot one night at Ford's Theater--the first President to be assassinated. Over 100 black-and-white illustrations and maps are included.
A Great and Terrible King: Edward I and the Forging of Britain
Marc Morris - 2008
His reign was one of the most dramatic and important of the entire Middle Ages, leading to war and conquest on an unprecedented scale, and leaving a legacy of division between the peoples of Britain that has lasted from his day to our own.Edward I is familiar to millions as ‘Longshanks’, conqueror of Scotland and nemesis of Sir William Wallace (‘Braveheart’). Yet this story forms only the final chapter of the king’s astonishingly action-packed life. Earlier Edward had defeated and killed the famous Simon de Montfort in battle; travelled across Europe to the Holy Land on crusade; conquered Wales, extinguishing forever its native rulers, and constructing – at Conwy, Harlech, Beaumaris and Caernarfon – the most magnificent chain of castles ever created. He raised the greatest armies of the English Middle Ages, and summoned the largest parliaments; notoriously, he expelled all the Jews from his kingdom. The longest-lived of all England’s medieval kings, he fathered no fewer than fifteen children with his first wife, Eleanor of Castile, and after her death he erected the Eleanor Crosses – the grandest funeral monuments ever fashioned for an English monarch.In this book, Marc Morris examines afresh the forces that drove Edward throughout his relentless career: his character, his Christian faith, and his sense of England’s destiny – a sense shaped in particular by the tales of the legendary King Arthur. He also explores the competing reasons that led Edward’s opponents (including Llywelyn ap Gruffudd and Robert Bruce) to resist him, and the very different societies that then existed in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. The result is a sweeping story, immaculately researched yet compellingly told, and a vivid picture of medieval Britain at the moment when its future was decided.
A Splendid Exchange: How Trade Shaped the World from Prehistory to Today
William J. Bernstein - 2008
A sweeping narrative history of world trade-from Sumer in 3000 BC to the firestorm over globalization today-that brilliantly explores trade's colorful and contentious past and provides fresh insights into social, political, cultural, and economic history, as well as a timely assessment of trade's future.
Abe's Honest Words: The Life of Abraham Lincoln
Doreen Rappaport - 2008
A voracious reader, Lincoln spent every spare moment of his days filling his mind with knowledge, from history to literature to mathematics, preparing himself to one day lead the country he loved towards greater equality and prosperity. Despite the obstacles he faced as a self-educated man from the back woods, Lincoln persevered in his political career, and his compassion and honesty gradually earned him the trust of many Americans. As president, he guided the nation through a long and bitter civil war and penned the document that would lead to the end of slavery in the United States.The passion for humanity that defined Lincoln's life shines through in this momentous follow-up to Martin's Big Words and John's Secret Dreams. Told in Doreen Rappaport's accessible, absorbing prose, and brought to life in powerful illustrations by Kadir Nelson, Abe's Honest Words is an epic portrait of a truly great American president.
Who Was Queen Elizabeth?
June Eding - 2008
A tough, intelligent woman who spoke five languages, Elizabeth ruled for over forty years and led England through one of its most prosperous periods in history. Over 80 illustrations bring ?Gloriana? and her court to life.
Lincoln President-Elect: Abraham Lincoln and the Great Secession Winter, 1860-1861
Harold Holzer - 2008
Though Lincoln has been criticized by many historians for failing to appreciate the severity of the secession crisis that greeted his victory, Harold Holzer shows that the presidentelect waged a shrewd and complex campaign to prevent the expansion of slavery while vainly trying to limit secession to a few Deep South states.During this most dangerous White House transition in American history, the country had two presidents: one powerless (the president-elect, possessing no constitutional authority), the other paralyzed (the incumbent who refused to act). Through limited, brilliantly timed and crafted public statements, determined private letters, tough political pressure, and personal persuasion, Lincoln guaranteed the integrity of the American political process of majority rule, sounded the death knell of slavery, and transformed not only his own image but that of the presidency, even while makinginevitable the war that would be necessary to make these achievements permanent.Lincoln President-Elect is the first book to concentrate on Lincoln's public stance and private agony during these months and on the momentous consequences when he first demonstrated his determination and leadership. Holzer recasts Lincoln from an isolated prairie politician yet to establish his greatness, to a skillful shaper of men and opinion and an immovable friend of freedom at a decisive moment when allegiance to the founding credo "all men are created equal" might well have been sacrificed.
The Brother Gardeners: Botany, Empire and the Birth of an Obsession
Andrea Wulf - 2008
But it was not reels of wool or bales of cotton that awaited him, but plants and seeds…Over the next forty years, Bartram would send hundreds of American species to England, where Collinson was one of a handful of men who would foster a national obsession and change the gardens of Britain forever, introducing lustrous evergreens, fiery autumn foliage and colourful shrubs. They were men of wealth and taste but also of knowledge and experience like Philip Miller, author of the bestselling Gardeners Dictionary, and the Swede Carl Linnaeus, whose standardised botanical nomenclature popularised botany as a genteel pastime for the middle-classes; and the botanist-adventurer Joseph Banks and his colleague Daniel Solander who both explored the strange flora of Tahiti and Australia on the greatest voyage of discovery of modern times, Captain Cook’s Endeavour.This is the story of these men – friends, rivals, enemies, united by a passion for plants – whose correspondence, collaborations and squabbles make for a riveting human tale which is set against the backdrop of the emerging empire, the uncharted world beyond and London as the capital of science. From the scent of the exotic blooms in Tahiti and Botany Bay to the gardens at Chelsea and Kew, and from the sounds and colours of the streets of the City to the staggering vistas of the Appalachian mountains, The Brother Gardeners tells the story of how Britain became a nation of gardeners.
A People's History of American Empire
Paul M. Buhle - 2008
More than a successful book, A People’s History triggered a revolution in the way history is told, displacing the official versions with their emphasis on great men in high places to chronicle events as they were lived, from the bottom up.Now Howard Zinn, historian Paul Buhle, and cartoonist Mike Konopacki have collaborated to retell, in vibrant comics form, a most immediate and relevant chapter of A People’s History: the centuries-long story of America’s actions in the world. Narrated by Zinn, this version opens with the events of 9/11 and then jumps back to explore the cycles of U.S. expansionism from Wounded Knee to Iraq, stopping along the way at World War I, Central America, Vietnam, and the Iranian revolution. The book also follows the story of Zinn, the son of poor Jewish immigrants, from his childhood in the Brooklyn slums to his role as one of America’s leading historians.Shifting from world-shattering events to one family’s small revolutions, A People’s History of American Empire presents the classic ground-level history of America in a dazzling new form.
President Lincoln: The Duty of a Statesman
William Lee Miller - 2008
William Lee Miller’s new book closely examines that great man in that hugely important office: Abraham Lincoln as president.Wars waged by American presidents have come to be pivotal historical events. Here Miller analyzes the commander in chief who coped with the profound moral dilemmas of America’s bloodiest war.In his acclaimed book Lincoln’s Virtues (“A fascinating account, sensitively written, rich in insight” —Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.), Miller explored Abraham Lincoln’s intellectual and moral development. Now he completes his “ethical biography,” showing the amiable and inexperienced backcountry politician transformed by constitutional alchemy into an oath-bound head of state, slapped in the face from the first minute of his presidency by decisions of the utmost gravity and confronted by the radical moral contradiction left by the nation’s Founders: universal ideals of Equality and Liberty and the monstrous injustice of human slavery.With wit and penetrating sensitivity, Miller shows us a Lincoln with unusual intellectual power, as he brings together the great themes that will be his legend—preserving the United States of America while ending the odious institution that corrupted the nation’s meaning. Miller finds in this superb politician a remarkable presidential combination: an indomitable resolve, combined with the judgment that keeps it from being mindless stubbornness; and a supreme magnanimity, combined with the discriminating judgment that keeps it from being sentimentality. Here is the realistic war leader persisting after multiple defeats, pressing his generals to take the battle to the enemy, insisting that the objective was the destruction of Lee’s army and not the capture of territory, saying that breath alone kills no rebels, remarking that he regretted war does not admit of holy days, asking whether one could believe that he would strike lighter blows rather than heavier ones, or leave any card unplayed. And here is the pardoner, finding every excuse to keep from shooting the simple soldier boy who deserts. Here too is the eloquent leader who describes the national task in matchless prose, and who rises above vindictiveness and triumphalism as he guides the nation to a new birth of freedom.
As Good as Anybody: Martin Luther King Jr. and Abraham Joshua Heschel's Amazing March Toward Freedom
Richard Michelson - 2008
and Abraham Joshua Heschel. Their names stand for the quest for justice and equality.Martin grew up in a loving family in the American South, at a time when this country was plagued by racial discrimination. He aimed to put a stop to it. He became a minister like his daddy, and he preached and marched for his cause.Abraham grew up in a loving family many years earlier, in a Europe that did not welcome Jews. He found a new home in America, where he became a respected rabbi like his father, carrying a message of peace and acceptance.Here is the story of two icons for social justice, how they formed a remarkable friendship and turned their personal experiences of discrimination into a message of love and equality for all.
A Dawn Like Thunder: The True Story of Torpedo Squadron Eight
Robert J. Mrazek - 2008
fleet win critical victories at Midway and Guadalcanal. These 35 American men--many flying outmoded aircraft--changed the course of history, going on to become the war's most decorated naval air squadron, while suffering the heaviest losses in U.S. naval aviation history. Mrazek paints moving portraits of the men in the squadron, and exposes a shocking cover-up that cost many lives. Filled with thrilling scenes of battle, betrayal, and sacrifice, A DAWN LIKE THUNDERis destined to become a classic in the literature of World War II.
The Lincolns: A Scrapbook Look at Abraham and Mary
Candace Fleming - 2008
The Lincolns received four starred reviews and won the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award for Non-Fiction, making this the perfect addition to any collection.Here are the extraordinary lives of Abraham and Mary, from their disparate childhoods and tumultuous courtship, through the agony of the Civil War, to the loss of three of their children, and finally their own tragic deaths. Readers can find Mary’s recipe for Abraham’s favorite cake—and bake it themselves; hear what Abraham looked like as a toddler; see a photo of the Lincolns’ dog; discover that the Lincoln children kept goats at the White House; see the Emancipation Proclamation written in Lincoln’ s own hand. Perfect for reluctant readers as well as history lovers, The Lincolns provides a living breathing portrait of a man, a woman, and a country.
Two Miserable Presidents: Everything Your Schoolbooks Didn't Tell You about the Civil War
Steve Sheinkin - 2008
Brooks lifted his cane to beat Sumner, and here the action in the book stops, so that Steve Sheinkin can explain just where this confrontation started. In the process, he unravels the complicated string of events - the small things, the personal ones, the big issues- that led to The Civil War. It is a time and a war that threatened America's very existence, revealed in the surprising true stories of the soldiers and statesmen who battled it out. "Two Miserable Presidents" is a 2009 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.
A Thousand Hills: Rwanda's Rebirth and the Man Who Dreamed It
Stephen Kinzer - 2008
Learn about President Kagame, who strives to make Rwanda the first middle-income country in Africa, in a single generation. In this adventurous tale, learn about Kagame's early fascination with Che Guevara and James Bond, his years as an intelligence agent, his training in Cuba and the United States, the way he built his secret rebel army, his bloody rebellion, and his outsized ambitions for Rwanda.
Tank Men: The Human Story of Tanks at War
Robert Kershaw - 2008
This is warfare at the sharp end' --NOTTINGHAM EVENING POST The First World War saw the birth of an extraordinary fighting machine that has fascinated three generations: the tank. In Tank Men, ex-soldier and military historian Robert Kershaw brings to life the grime, the grease and the fury of a tank battle through the voices of ordinary men and women who lived and fought in those fearsome machines. Drawing on vivid, newly researched personal testimony from the crucial battles of the First and Second World Wars, this is military history at its very best.
We Are Soldiers Still: A Journey Back to the Battlefields of Vietnam
Harold G. Moore - 2008
And Young" (1992) is still required reading in all branches of the military. Every day the authors receive letters from readers wanting to know what's happened to the characters they came to admire such as Ed "Too Tall to Fly" Freeman and Bruce "Old Snake" Crandall. There are also questions about whether they are still in touch with their North Vietnam counterparts and where they are now.Many of these questions are finally answered in title "We are Soldiers Still", which recounts a unique journey back to the battlefields by the commanders and veterans of both sides - a journey which ended with the authors and some of the comrades stranded overnight, alone, on the isolated field code-named Landing Zone XRay where so many perished. They will tell what was learned and felt during a night when a meteor shower filled the sky and peace came upon them. The authors mix gritty and vivid detail with reverence and respect for their comrades. Their authority on the military, their ability to capture man's sense of heroism and brotherhood, and readers' fascination with their story is sure to make this a must-buy book for all history buffs. While "We Were Soldiers" brought to life an important moment in US history, "We are Soldiers Still" will illuminate how that history has changed the authors, the men involved, and our country.
The American Patriot's Almanac
William J. Bennett - 2008
And within their cadence, personalities, conflicts, discoveries, ideas, and nations peal and fade. American history is no different. From the starving time of Jamestown during the Winter of 1609, through the bloody argument of the Civil War, and to today, the United States is a tale best told one day at a time.Best-selling author and educator Dr. William J. Bennett is a master of the story that is the United States. And in "The American Patriot's Almanac," Bennett distills the American drama into three hundred sixty-five entries-one for each day of the year. Fascinating in its detail and singular in its grasp of the big themes, Bennett's "Almanac" will make anyone a fan of history, assembling even some of the most obscure details. Even better, it will make of everyone a patriot.
In a Different Time: The Inside Story of the Delmas Four
Peter Harris - 2008
They are a highly trained and experienced assassination squad reporting directly to Chris Hani.The narrative details their infiltration into the country, their operations, arrest and subsequent trial. These men are the foot soldiers who sacrificed everything. As their trial unfolds with their attorney fighting to save them from the gallows, so too does the story of their own lives and the choices they make. The story is set in a South Africa gripped by unrest and political tension, when the ANC was in exile and repression at its height.It tells of the extraordinary lengths people go to in order to fight for what they believe, and the acts people will commit to preserve the status quo. The characters are linked by bizarre coincidence and tragedy in a true account narrated by their attorney.Woven through the narrative is the construction of a bomb and its journey towards its target, and the circumstances which enable that meeting.
Delta Blues: The Life and Times of the Mississippi Masters Who Revolutionized American Music
Ted Gioia - 2008
With original research and keen insights, Ted Gioia—the author of a landmark study of West Coast jazz and the critically acclaimed The History of Jazz—brings to life the stirring music of the Delta, evoking the legendary figures who shaped its sound and ethos: Robert Johnson, Charley Patton, Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Howlin' Wolf, B. B. King, and others. Tracing the history of the Delta blues from the field hollers and plantation music of the nineteenth century to the exploits of modern-day musicians in the Delta tradition, Delta Blues tells the full story of this timeless and unforgettable music. No cultural force boasts such humble origins or such world-conquering reverberations. In this evocative rags-to-riches tale, Gioia shows how the sounds of the Delta altered the course of popular music in America and in the world beyond.
Ancient Book Of Jasher
Ken Johnson - 2008
The Ancient Book of Jasher is the only one of the 13 that still exists. It is referenced in Joshua 10:13; 2 Samuel 1:18; and 2 Timothy 3:8. This volume contains the entire 91 chapters plus a detailed analysis of the supposed discrepancies, cross-referenced historical accounts, and detailed charts for ease of use. As with any history book there are typographical errors in the text but with three consecutive timelines running though the histories it is very easy to arrive at the exact dates of recorded events. It is not surprising that this ancient document confirms the Scripture and the chronology given in the Hebrew version of the Old Testament, once and for all settling the chronology differences between the Hebrew Old Testament and the Greek Septuagint. The Ancient book of Jasher is brought to you by Biblefacts Ministries, Biblefacts.org
Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in Spaceflight
David A. Mindell - 2008
Neil Armstrong responded by switching off the automatic mode and taking direct control. He stopped monitoring the computer and began flying the spacecraft, relying on skill to land it and earning praise for a triumph of human over machine. In Digital Apollo, engineer-historian David Mindell takes this famous moment as a starting point for an exploration of the relationship between humans and computers in the Apollo program. In each of the six Apollo landings, the astronaut in command seized control from the computer and landed with his hand on the stick. Mindell recounts the story of astronauts' desire to control their spacecraft in parallel with the history of the Apollo Guidance Computer. From the early days of aviation through the birth of spaceflight, test pilots and astronauts sought to be more than "spam in a can" despite the automatic controls, digital computers, and software developed by engineers.Digital Apollo examines the design and execution of each of the six Apollo moon landings, drawing on transcripts and data telemetry from the flights, astronaut interviews, and NASA's extensive archives. Mindell's exploration of how human pilots and automated systems worked together to achieve the ultimate in flight -- a lunar landing -- traces and reframes the debate over the future of humans and automation in space. The results have implications for any venture in which human roles seem threatened by automated systems, whether it is the work at our desktops or the future of exploration.
A Terrible Glory: Custer and the Little Bighorn - the Last Great Battle of the American West
James Donovan - 2008
The news of this devastating loss caused a public uproar, and those in positions of power promptly began to point fingers in order to avoid responsibility. Custer, who was conveniently dead, took the brunt of the blame.The truth, however, was far more complex. A TERRIBLE GLORY is the first book to relate the entire story of this endlessly fascinating battle, and the first to call upon all the significant research and findings of the past twenty-five years--which have changed significantly how this controversial event is perceived. Furthermore, it is the first book to bring to light the details of the U.S. Army cover-up--and unravel one of the greatest mysteries in U.S. military history. Scrupulously researched, A TERRIBLE GLORY will stand as ta landmark work. Brimming with authentic detail and an unforgettable cast of characters--from Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse to Ulysses Grant and Custer himself--this is history with the sweep of a great novel.
Fire in the Night: The Piper Alpha Disaster
Stephen McGinty - 2008
The heat generated was so intense that a helicopter could only circle at a perimeter of one mile. Flying at a height of 200 feet, the air crew saw that the tongues of flame extended high above the rotor blades. On the surface a converted fishing trawler inched as close as possible, but the paint on the vessel's hull blistered and burnt, and the rope handrails began to smoke. In the water surrounding the inferno, men's heads could be seen bobbing like apples as their yellow hard hats melted with the heat. At the center stood, at least for now, the Piper Alpha oil platform, 110 miles northeast of Aberdeen, once the world's single largest oil producer. On July 6, 1988, its final day, it was ablaze with 226 men onboard. Only sixty-one would survive. Fire in the Night tells, for the first time and in gripping detail, the devastating story of that summer evening. Combining interviews with survivors, witness statements, and transcripts from the official enquiry into the disaster, this is the moving and vivid tale of what happened on that fateful night inside an oil rig inferno.
Willie and Joe: The WWII Years
Bill Mauldin - 2008
Army.Fantagraphics Books brings together Mauldin’s complete works from 1940 through the end of the war. This collection of over 600 cartoons, most never before reprinted, is more than the record of a great artist: it is an essential chronicle of America’s citizen-soldiers from peace through war to victory. Bill Mauldin knew war because he was in it. He had created his characters, Willie and Joe, at age 18, before Pearl Harbor, while training with the 45th Infantry Division and cartooning part-time for the camp newspaper. His brilliant send-ups of officers were pure infantry, and the men loved it. With their heavy brush lines, detailed battlescapes, and pidgin of army slang and slum dialect, Mauldin’s cartoons and captions recreated on paper the fully realized world of the American combat soldier. Their dark, often insubordinate humor sparked controversy among army brass and incensed General George S. Patton, Jr.Presented in a deluxe, beautifully designed two-volume slipcased edition of over 700 pages, this tome is edited by Todd DePastino, Mauldin’s official biographer. Willie Joe contains an introduction and running commentary by DePastino, providing context for the drawings, pertinent biographical details of Mauldin’s life, and occasional background on specific cartoons (such as the ones that made Patton howl).
The Comanche Empire
Pekka Hämäläinen - 2008
This powerful empire, built by the Comanche Indians, eclipsed its various European rivals in military prowess, political prestige, economic power, commercial reach, and cultural influence. Yet, until now, the Comanche empire has gone unrecognized in American history.This compelling and original book uncovers the lost story of the Comanches. It is a story that challenges the idea of indigenous peoples as victims of European expansion and offers a new model for the history of colonial expansion, colonial frontiers, and Native-European relations in North America and elsewhere. Pekka Hämäläinen shows in vivid detail how the Comanches built their unique empire and resisted European colonization, and why they fell to defeat in 1875. With extensive knowledge and deep insight, the author brings into clear relief the Comanches’ remarkable impact on the trajectory of history.Published in Association with The William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies, Southern Methodist University.
Paradise Lost: Smyrna, 1922
Giles Milton - 2008
The city's vast wealth created centuries earlier by powerful Levantine dynasties, its factories teemed with Greeks, Armenians, Turks, and Jews. Together, they had created a majority Christian city that was unique in the Islamic world. But to the Turkish nationalists, Smyrna was a city of infidels.In the aftermath of the First World War and with the support of the Great Powers, Greece had invaded Turkey with the aim of restoring a Christian empire in Asia. But by the summer of 1922, the Greeks had been vanquished by Atatürk's armies after three years of warfare. As Greek troops retreated, the non-Muslim civilians of Smyrna assumed that American and European warships would intervene if and when the Turkish cavalry decided to enter the city. But this was not to be.On September 13, 1922, Turkish troops descended on Smyrna. They rampaged first through the Armenian quarter, and then throughout the rest of the city. They looted homes, raped women, and murdered untold thousands. Turkish soldiers were seen dousing buildings with petroleum. Soon, all but the Turkish quarter of the city was in flames and hundreds of thousands of refugees crowded the waterfront, desperate to escape. The city burned for four days; by the time the embers cooled, more than 100,000 people had been killed and millions left homeless.Based on eyewitness accounts and the memories of survivors, many interviewed for the first time, Paradise Lost offers a vivid narrative account of one of the most vicious military catastrophes of the modern age.
The Fires of Vesuvius: Pompeii Lost and Found
Mary Beard - 2008
Yet it is also one of the most puzzling, with an intriguing and sometimes violent history, from the sixth century BCE to the present day. Destroyed by Vesuvius in 79 CE, the ruins of Pompeii offer the best evidence we have of life in the Roman Empire. But the eruptions are only part of the story. In The Fires of Vesuvius, acclaimed historian Mary Beard makes sense of the remains. She explores what kind of town it was--more like Calcutta or the Costa del Sol?--and what it can tell us about ordinary life there. From sex to politics, food to religion, slavery to literacy, Beard offers us the big picture even as she takes us close enough to the past to smell the bad breath and see the intestinal tapeworms of the inhabitants of the lost city. She resurrects the Temple of Isis as a testament to ancient multiculturalism. At the Suburban Baths we go from communal bathing to hygiene to erotica. Recently, Pompeii has been a focus of pleasure and loss: from Pink Floyd's memorable rock concert to Primo Levi's elegy on the victims. But Pompeii still does not give up its secrets quite as easily as it may seem. This book shows us how much more and less there is to Pompeii than a city frozen in time as it went about its business on 24 August 79.
Reappraisals: Reflections on the Forgotten Twentieth Century
Tony Judt - 2008
The twentieth century has become "history" at an unprecedented rate. The world of 2007 is so utterly unlike that of even 1987, much less any earlier time, that we have lost touch with our immediate past even before we have begun to make sense of it. In less than a generation, the headlong advance of globalization, with the geographical shifts of emphasis and influence it brings in its wake, has altered the structures of thought that had been essentially unchanged since the European industrial revolution. Quite literally, we don't know where we came from. The results have proved calamitous thus far, with the prospect of far worse. We have lost touch with a century of social thought and socially motivated social activism. We no longer know how to discuss such concepts and have forgotten the role once played by intellectuals in debating, transmitting, and defending the ideas that shaped their time. In Reappraisals, Tony Judt resurrects the key aspects of the world we have lost in order to remind us how important they still are to us now and to our hopes for the future. Reappraisals draws provocative connections between a dazzling range of subjects, from the history of the neglect and recovery of the Holocaust and the challenge of "evil" in the understanding of the European past to the rise and fall of the "state" in public affairs and the displacement of history by "heritage." With his trademark acuity and Žlan, Tony Judt takes us beyond what we think we know to show us how we came to know it and reveals how many aspects of our history have been sacrificed in the triumph of mythmaking over understanding, collective identity over truth, and denial over memory. His book is a road map back to the historical sense we so vitally need.
Churchill's Secret War: The British Empire and the Ravaging of India During World War II
Madhusree Mukerjee - 2008
But while he has been widely extolled for his achievements, parts of Churchill's record have gone woefully unexamined. As journalist Madhusree Mukerjee reveals, at the same time that Churchill brilliantly opposed the barbarism of the Nazis, he governed India with a fierce resolve to crush its freedom movement and a profound contempt for native lives. A series of Churchill's decisions between 1940 and 1944 directly and inevitably led to the deaths of some three million Indians. The streets of eastern Indian cities were lined with corpses, yet instead of sending emergency food shipments Churchill used the wheat and ships at his disposal to build stockpiles for feeding postwar Britain and Europe.Combining meticulous research with a vivid narrative, and riveting accounts of personality and policy clashes within and without the British War Cabinet, Churchill's Secret War places this oft-overlooked tragedy into the larger context of World War II, India's fight for freedom, and Churchill's enduring legacy. Winston Churchill may have found victory in Europe, but, as this groundbreaking historical investigation reveals, his mismanagement--facilitated by dubious advice from scientist and eugenicist Lord Cherwell--devastated India and set the stage for the massive bloodletting that accompanied independence.
Terry Deary - 2008
It contains 20 books, including 'Rotten Romans', 'Terrible Tudors' and 'Awesome Egyptians'.
Touching History: The Untold Story of the Drama That Unfolded in the Skies Over America on 9/11
Lynn Spencer - 2008
American skies on 9/11 as the FAA, the military & thousands of commercial pilots called on all of their training & courage to improvise a response to the first attacks on American soil since Pearl Harbor & contend with a new kind of aerial war.ForewordPrefacePrelude: Skies Severe ClearAmerican 11, do you hear me?No ordinary hijacking Another Confusion in the cockpitsThe unfathomable A nation under attackSecure the cockpit! NORAD responds No more take-offs! The Pentagon is hitEvery plane out of the skies Generate! Generate! Generate!Chaos in the skies Weapons free Shoot down authorityA tightening grip The skies belong to NORADThe longest dayEpilogueAfterwordNotes AcknowledgmentsIndex
Frederick Douglass: The Most Complete Collection of His Written Works & Speeches
Frederick Douglass - 2008
AUTHOR'S BIRTHCHAPTER II. REMOVAL FROM GRANDMOTHER'SCHAPTER III. TROUBLES OF CHILDHOODCHAPTER IV. A GENERAL SURVEY OF THE SLAVE PLANTATIONCHAPTER V. A SLAVEHOLDER'S CHARACTERCHAPTER VI. A CHILD'S REASONINGCHAPTER VII. LUXURIES AT THE GREAT HOUSECHAPTER VIII. CHARACTERISTICS OF OVERSEERSCHAPTER IX. CHANGE OF LOCATIONCHAPTER X. LEARNING TO READCHAPTER XI. GROWING IN KNOWLEDGECHAPTER XII. RELIGIOUS NATURE AWAKENEDCHAPTER XIII. THE VICISSITUDES OF SLAVE LIFECHAPTER XIV. EXPERIENCE IN ST. MICHAELSCHAPTER XV. COVEY, THE NEGRO BREAKERCHAPTER XVI. ANOTHER PRESSURE OF THE TYRANT'S VISECHAPTER XVII. THE LAST FLOGGINGCHAPTER XVIII. NEW RELATIONS AND DUTIESCHAPTER XIX. THE RUNAWAY PLOTCHAPTER XX.CHAPTER XXI. ESCAPE FROM SLAVERYSECOND PARTCHAPTER I. ESCAPE FROM SLAVERYCHAPTER II. LIFE AS A FREEMANCHAPTER III. INTRODUCED TO THE ABOLITIONISTSCHAPTER IV. RECOLLECTIONS OF OLD FRIENDSCHAPTER V. ONE HUNDRED CONVENTIONSCHAPTER VI. IMPRESSIONS ABROADCHAPTER VII. TRIUMPHS AND TRIALSCHAPTER VIII. JOHN BROWN AND MRS. STOWECHAPTER IX. INCREASING DEMANDS OF THE SLAVE POWERCHAPTER X. THE BEGINNING OF THE ENDCHAPTER XI. SECESSION AND WAR"MEN OF COLOR, TO ARMS!”THE BLACK MAN AT THE WHITE HOUSECHAPTER XII. HOPE FOR THE NATIONCHAPTER XIII. VAST CHANGESCHAPTER XIV. LIVING AND LEARNINGCHAPTER XV. WEIGHED IN THE BALANCECHAPTER XVI. "TIME MAKES ALL THINGS EVEN"CHAPTER XVII. INCIDENTS AND EVENTSCHAPTER XVIII. "HONOR TO WHOM HONOR"CHAPTER XIX. RETROSPECTIONCONCLUSIONAPPENDIXWEST INDIA EMANCIPATIONTHIRD PARTCHAPTER I. LATER LIFECHAPTER II. A GRAND OCCASIONCHAPTER III. DOUBTS AS TO GARFIELD'S COURSECHAPTER IV. RECORDER OF DEEDSCHAPTER V. PRESIDENT CLEVELAND'S ADMINISTRATIONCHAPTER VI. THE SUPREME COURT DECISIONCHAPTER VII. DEFEAT OF JAMES G. BLAINECHAPTER VIII. EUROPEAN TOURCHAPTER IX. CONTINUATION OF EUROPEAN TOURCHAPTER X. THE CAMPAIGN OF 1888CHAPTER XI. ADMINISTRATION OF PRESIDENT HARRISONCHAPTER XII. MINISTER TO HAÏTICHAPTER XIII. CONTINUED NEGOTIATIONS FOR THE MÔLE ST. NICOLASCOLLECTED ARTICLES OF FREDERICK DOUGLASS, A SLAVEMY ESCAPE FROM SLAVERYRECONSTRUCTIONMY BONDAGE and MY FREEDOMCONTENTSEDITORS PREFACEINTRODUCTIONLIFE AS A SLAVE?I--CHILDHOODII--REMOVED FROM MY FIRST HOMEIII--PARENTAGEIV--A GENERAL SURVEY OF THE SLAVE PLANTATIONV--GRADUAL INITIATION INTO THE MYSTERIES OF SLAVERYVI--TREATMENT OF SLAVES ON LLOYDS PLANTATIONVII--LIFE IN THE GREAT HOUSEVIII--A CHAPTER OF HORRORSIX--PERSONAL TREATMENTX--LIFE IN BALTIMOREXI--"A CHANGE CAME O'ER THE SPIRIT OF MY DREAM"XII--RELIGIOUS NATURE AW
The Circus: 1870s–1950s
Noel Daniel - 2008
During the heyday of the American circus from the mid-1800s to mid-1900s, traveling circuses performed for audiences of up to 12,000-14,000 per show, employed as many as 1,600 men and women, and crisscrossed the country on 20,000 miles of railroad in one season alone. The spectacle of death-defying daredevils, strapping super-heroes and scantily-clad starlets, fearless animal trainers, and startling freaks gripped the American imagination, outshining theater, vaudeville, comedy, and minstrel shows of its day, and ultimately paved the way for film and television to take root in the modern era. Long before the Beat generation made ""on the road"" expeditions popular, the circus personified the experience and offered many young Americans the dream of adventure, reinvention, excitement, and glamour.
Scheisshaus Luck: Surviving the Unspeakable in Auschwitz and Dora
Pierre Berg - 2008
He was thrown into the infamous Auschwitz concentration camp. But through a mixture of savvy and chance, he managed to survive...and ultimately got out alive. "As far as I'm concerned," says Berg, "it was all shithouse luck, which is to say--inelegantly--that I kept landing on the right side of the randomness of life."Such begins the first memoir of a French gentile Holocaust survivor published in the U.S. Originally penned shortly after the war when memories were still fresh, "Scheisshaus Luck" recounts Berg's constant struggle in the camps, escaping death countless times while enduring inhumane conditions, exhaustive labor, and near starvation. The book takes readers through Berg's time in Auschwitz, his hair's breadth avoidance of Allied bombing raids, his harrowing "death march" out of Auschwitz to Dora, a slave labor camp (only to be placed in another forced labor camp manufacturing the Nazis' V1 & V2 rockets), and his eventual daring escape in the middle of a pitched battle between Nazi and Red Army forces.Utterly frank and tinged with irony, irreverence, and gallows humor, " Scheisshaus Luck" ranks in importance among the work of fellow survivors Elie Wiesel and Primo Levi. As we quickly approach the day when there will be no living eyewitnesses to the Nazi's "Final Solution," Berg's memoir stands as a searing reminder of how the Holocaust affected us all.
World War II: Behind Closed Doors; Stalin, the Nazis, and the West
Laurence Rees - 2008
In the summer of 1945 many of the countries in Eastern Europe simply swapped the rule of one tyrant, Adolf Hitler, for that of another: Joseph Stalin. Why this happened has remained one of the most troubling questions of the entire conflict, and is at the heart of Laurence Rees' dramatic book.In World War II: Behind Closed Doors, Rees provides an intimate 'behind the scenes' history of the West's dealings with Joseph Stalin - an account which uses material only available since the opening of archives in the East as well as new testimony from witnesses from the period. An enthralling mix of high politics and the often heart-rending personal experiences of those on the ground, it will make you rethink what you believe about World War II.
Tried by War: Abraham Lincoln as Commander in Chief
James M. McPherson - 2008
McPherson provides a rare, fresh take on one of the most enigmatic figures in American history. Tried by War offers a revelatory (and timely) portrait of leadership during the greatest crisis our nation has ever endured. Suspenseful and inspiring, this is the story of how Lincoln, with almost no previous military experience before entering the White House, assumed the powers associated with the role of commander in chief, and through his strategic insight and will to fight changed the course of the war and saved the Union.
New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR's Economic Legacy Has Damaged America
Burton W. Folsom Jr. - 2008
New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR's Economic Legacy Has Damaged America
Incognegro: A Memoir of Exile and Apartheid
Frank B. Wilderson III - 2008
Mark my word." --Ishmael ReedIn 1995, a South African journalist informed Frank B. Wilderson, one of only two American members of the African National Congress (ANC), that President Nelson Mandela considered him “a threat to national security.” Wilderson was asked to comment. Incognegro is that “comment.” It is also his response to a question posed five years later by a student in a California university classroom: “How come you came back?”Although Wilderson recollects his turbulent life as an expatriate in South Africa during the furious last gasps of apartheid, Incognegro is at heart a quintessentially American story. During South Africa’s transition, Wilderson taught at universities in Johannesburg and Soweto by day. By night, he helped the ANC coordinate clandestine propaganda, launch psychological warfare, and more. In his mesmerizing political memoir, Wilderson’s lyrical prose flows from his childhood in the white Minneapolis enclave “integrated” by his family to a rebellious adolescence at the student barricades in Berkeley and under tutelage of the Black Panther Party; from unspeakable dilemmas in the red dust and ruin of South Africa to his return to political battles raging quietly on US campuses and in his intimate life. Readers will find themselves suddenly overtaken by the subtle but resolute force of Wilderson’s biting wit, rare vulnerability, and insistence on bearing witness to history no matter the cost.A literary tour de force sure to spark fierce debate in both America and South Africa, Incognegro retells a story most Americans assume we already know, with a sometimes awful, but ultimately essential clarity about racial politics and our own lives.Frank B. Wilderson, III is the award-winning author of Red, White, & Black: Cinema and the Structure of US Antagonisms (Duke UP) and the director of Reparations . . . Now.
Looking for Lincoln: The Making of an American Icon
Philip B. Kunhardt III - 2008
A sequel to the enormously successful Lincoln: An Illustrated Biography, Looking for Lincoln picks up where the previous book left off, examining how our sixteenth president’s legend came into being.Availing themselves of a vast collection of both published and never-before-seen materials, the authors—the fourth and fifth generations of a family of Lincoln scholars—bring into focus the posthumous portrait of Lincoln that took hold in the American imagination, becoming synonymous with the nation’s very understanding of itself. Told through the voices of those who knew the man—Northerners and Southerners, blacks and whites, neighbors and family members, adversaries and colleagues—and through stories carefully selected from long-forgotten newspapers, magazines, and family scrapbooks, Looking for Lincoln charts the dramatic epilogue to Lincoln’s extraordinary life when, in a process fraught with jealousy, greed, and the struggle for power, the scope of his historical significance was taking shape.In vibrant and immediate detail, the authors chart the years when Americans struggled to understand their loss and rebuild their country. Here is a chronicle of the immediate aftermath of the assassination; the private memories of those closest to the slain president; the difficult period between 1876 and 1908, when a tired nation turned its back on the former slaves and betrayed Lincoln’s teachings; and the early years of the twentieth century when Lincoln’s popularity soared as African Americans fought to reclaim the ideals he espoused.Looking for Lincoln will deeply enhance our understanding of the statesman and his legacy, at a moment when the timeless example of his leadership is more crucial than ever.
Anzac Girls: The Extraordinary Story Of Our World War 1 Nurses
Peter Rees - 2008
These were the women who left for war looking for adventure and romance, but were soon confronted with challenges for which their civilian lives could never have prepared them. Their strength and dignity were remarkable. Using diaries and letters Peter Rees takes us into the hospital camps and the wards and the tent surgeries on the edge of some of the most horrific battlefronts of human history. But he also allows the friendships and love of these courageous and compassionate women to enrich their experiences, and ours. Profoundly moving, this is a story of extraordinary courage and humanity shown by a group of woman whose contribution to the Anzac legend has barely been recognized in our history. Peter Rees has changed that understanding forever.
Italy's Sorrow: A Year of War, 1944-1945
James Holland - 2008
For frontline troops, casualty rates at Cassino and along the notorious Gothic Line were as high as they had been on the Western Front in the First World War. There were further similarities too: blasted landscapes, rain and mud, and months on end with the front line barely moving. And while the Allies and Germans were fighting it out through the mountains, the Italians were engaging in bitter battles too. Partisans were carrying out a crippling resistance campaign against the German troops but also battling the Fascists forces as well in what soon became a bloody civil war. Around them, innocent civilians tried to live through the carnage, terror and anarchy, while in the wake of the Allied advance, horrific numbers of impoverished and starving people were left to pick their way through the ruins of their homes and country. In the German-occupied north, there were more than 700 civilian massacres by German and Fascist troops in retaliation for Partisan activities, while in the south, many found themselves forced into making terrible and heart-rending decisions in order to survive.Although known as a land of beauty and for the richness of its culture, Italy's suffering in 1944-1945 is now largely forgotten. This is the first account of the conflict there to tell the story from all sides and to include the experiences of soldiers and civilians alike. Offering extensive original research, it weaves together the drama and tragedy of that terrible year, including new perspectives and material on some of the most debated episodes to have emerged from the Second World War.
The Dawn of the Color Photograph: Albert Kahn's Archives of the Planet
David Okuefuna - 2008
An internationalist and pacifist, Kahn believed that he could use the new autochrome—the world's first portable, true-color photographic process—to create a global photographic archive that would promote cross-cultural understanding and peace. Over the next twenty years, he sent a group of photographers to more than fifty countries around the world, amassing more than 72,000 images. Until recently his collection was all but forgotten. Now, a century after he began his "Archives of the Planet" project, this book—richly illustrated in color throughout—and the BBC series it follows are bringing Kahn's dazzling early twentieth-century pictures to a wide audience for the first time, and putting color into what we usually think of as a monochrome world.Kahn's photographers captured times, places, and people we simply do not expect to see in color photographs. They documented age-old cultures on the brink of being changed forever by war, modernization, and Westernization, recording the last years of Ireland's traditional Celtic villages and the late days of the Austro-Hungarian and Ottoman empires. They photographed First World War soldiers in their trenches as well as the postwar celebrations in London. In the course of their travels, they also took the earliest color photographs in countries as varied as Vietnam and Brazil, Mongolia and Norway, Benin and the United States.After being financially ruined in the Great Depression, Kahn was forced to bring his project to a premature end, but today his collection of early color photographs is recognized as one of the world's most important. The Dawn of the Color Photograph makes it easy to see why.
Leningrad: State of Siege
Michael Jones - 2008
“In this struggle for survival, we have no interest in keeping even a proportion of the city’s population alive.”During the famed 900-day siege of Leningrad, the German High Command deliberately planned to eradicate the city’s population through starvation. Viewing the Slavs as sub-human, Hitler embarked on a vicious program of ethnic cleansing. By the time the siege ended in January 1944, almost a million people had died. Those who survived would be marked permanently by what they endured as the city descended into chaos.In Leningrad, military historian Michael Jones chronicles the human story of this epic siege. Drawing on newly available eyewitness accounts and diaries, he reveals the true horrors of the ordeal—including stories long-suppressed by the Soviets of looting, criminal gangs, and cannibalism. But he also shows the immense psychological resources on which the citizens of Leningrad drew to survive against desperate odds. At the height of the siege, for instance, an extraordinary live performance of Shostakovich’s Seventh Symphony profoundly strengthened the city’s will to resist.A riveting account of one of the most harrowing sieges of world history, Leningrad also portrays the astonishing power of the human will in the face of even the direst catastrophe.
March On!: The Day My Brother Martin Changed the World
Christine King Farris - 2008
From Dr. Martin Luther King's sister, the definitive tribute to the man, the march, and the speech that changed a nation.
Gandhi and Churchill: The Epic Rivalry that Destroyed an Empire and Forged Our Age
Arthur Herman - 2008
They were born worlds apart: Winston Churchill to Britain's most glamorous aristocratic family, Mohandas Gandhi to a pious middle-class household in a provincial town in India. Yet Arthur Herman reveals how their lives and careers became intertwined as the twentieth century unfolded. Both men would go on to lead their nations through harrowing trials and two world wars--and become locked in a fierce contest of wills that would decide the fate of countries, continents, and ultimately an empire. Gandhi & Churchill reveals how both men were more alike than different, and yet became bitter enemies over the future of India, a land of 250 million people with 147 languages and dialects and 15 distinct religions--the jewel in the crown of Britain's overseas empire for 200 years. Over the course of a long career, Churchill would do whatever was necessary to ensure that India remain British--including a fateful redrawing of the entire map of the Middle East and even risking his alliance with the United States during World War Two. Mohandas Gandhi, by contrast, would dedicate his life to India's liberation, defy death and imprisonment, and create an entirely new kind of political movement: satyagraha, or civil disobedience. His campaigns of nonviolence in defiance of Churchill and the British, including his famous Salt March, would become the blueprint not only for the independence of India but for the civilrights movement in the U.S. and struggles for freedom across the world. Now master storyteller Arthur Herman cuts through the legends and myths about these two powerful, charismatic figures and reveals their flaws as well as their strengths. The result is a sweeping epic of empire and insurrection, war and political intrigue, with a fascinating supporting cast, including General Kitchener, Rabindranath Tagore, Franklin Roosevelt, Lord Mountbatten, and Mohammed Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. It is also a brilliant narrative parable of two men whose great successes were always haunted by personal failure, and whose final moments of triumph were overshadowed by the loss of what they held most dear.
Escape from the Deep: The Epic Story of a Legendary Submarine and her Courageous Crew
Alex Kershaw - 2008
Navy submarine Tang was legendary-she had sunk more enemy ships, rescued more downed airmen, and pulled off more daring surface attacks than any other Allied submarine in the Pacific. And then, on her fifth patrol, tragedy struck-the Tang was hit by one of her own faulty torpedoes. The survivors of the explosion struggled to stay alive in their submerged “iron coffin” one hundred-eighty feet beneath the surface. While the Japanese dropped deadly depth charges, just nine of the original eighty-man crew survived a harrowing ascent through the escape hatch. But a far greater ordeal was coming. After being picked up by a Japanese patrol vessel, they were sent to a secret Japanese interrogation camp known as the “Torture Farm.” They were close to death when finally liberated in August, 1945, but they had revealed nothing to the Japanese-not even the greatest secret of World War II.With the same heart-pounding narrative drive that made The Bedford Boys and The Longest Winter national bestsellers, Alex Kershaw brings to life this incredible story of survival and endurance.
A History of Ireland in 250 Episodes
Jonathan Bardon - 2008
What makes his book so valuable, however, are the quirky subjects he chooses to illustrate how history really works: the great winter freeze of 1740 and the famine that followed; crime and dueling; an emigrant voyage; evictions. These episodes get behind the historical headlines to give a glimpse of past realities that might otherwise be lost to view. The author has retained the original episodic structure of the radio programs. The result is a marvelous mosaic of the Irish past, delivered with clarity and narrative skill.
Richard III: The Maligned King
Annette Carson - 2008
In response to the recent upsurge of interest, her 2009 paperback has been updated with details of the discovery plus new illustrations, and a larger typeface for easier readability. Carson's premise is that for centuries the vision of Richard III has been dominated by the fictional creations of Thomas More and Shakespeare. Many voices, some of them eminent and scholarly, have urged a more reasoned view to replace the traditional black portrait. This book seeks to redress the balance by examining the events of his reign as they actually happened, based on reports in the original sources. Eschewing the overlay of assumptions so beloved by historians, she instead traces actions and activities of the principal characters, using facts and time-lines revealed in documentary evidence. In the process Carson dares to investigate areas where historians fear to tread, and raises many controversial questions.
Out of Mao's Shadow: The Struggle for the Soul of a New China
Philip P. Pan - 2008
Pan offers an unprecedented inside look at the momentous battle underway for China's future. On one side is the entrenched party elite determined to preserve its authoritarian grip on power. On the other is a collection of lawyers, journalists, entrepreneurs, activists, hustlers, and dreamers striving to build a more tolerant, open, and democratic China. The outcome of this dramatic, hidden struggle will shape China's rise to superpower status-and determine how it affects the rest of the world.From factories in the rusting industrial northeast to a tabloid newsroom in the booming south, from a small-town courtroom to the plush offices of the nation's wealthiest tycoons, Pan speaks with men and women fighting and sacrificing for change. An elderly surgeon exposes the government's cover-up of the SARS epidemic. A filmmaker investigates the execution of a student in the Cultural Revolution. A blind man is jailed for leading a crusade against forced abortions carried out under the one-child policy.Out of Mao's Shadow offers a startling perspective on China and its remarkable transformation, challenging conventional wisdom about the political apathy of the Chinese people and the notion that prosperity leads automatically to freedom. Like David Remnick's Lenin's Tomb, this is the moving story of a nation in transition, of a people coming to terms with their past.
Hell's Cartel: IG Farben and the Making of Hitler's War Machine
Diarmuid Jeffreys - 2008
To this day, companies formerly part of the Farben cartel—the aspirin-maker Bayer, the graphics supplier Agfa, the plastics giant BASF—continue to play key roles in the global market. IG Farben itself, however, is remembered mostly for its infamous connections to the Nazi Party and its complicity in the atrocities of the Holocaust. After the war, Farben’s leaders were tried for crimes that included mass murder and exploitation of slave labor. In Hell’s Cartel, Diarmuid Jeffreys presents the first comprehensive account of IG Farben’s rise and fall, tracing the enterprise from its nineteenth-century origins, when the discovery of synthetic dyes gave rise to a vibrant new industry, through the upheavals of the Great War era, and on to the company’s fateful role in World War II. Drawing on extensive research and original interviews, Hell’s Cartel sheds new light on the codependence of industry and the Third Reich, and offers a timely warning against the dangerous merger of politics and the pursuit of profit.
Forgotten Voices of the Somme: The Most Devastating Battle of the Great War in the Words of Those Who Survived
Joshua Levine - 2008
Drawing on a wealth of material from the vast Imperial War Museum Sound Archive, 'Forgotten Voices of the Somme' presents an intimate, harsh but often poignant insight into life on the front line: from the day-to-day struggle of extraordinary circumstances to the white heat of battle and the constant threat of injury or death.
The Essential Chomsky
Noam Chomsky - 2008
The Essential Chomsky brings together selections from his most important writings since 1959-from his groundbreaking critique of B.F. Skinner to his bestselling works Hegermony or Survival and Failed States-concerning subjects ranging from critiques of corporate media and U.S. interventionism to intellectual freedom and the political economy of human rights. With a foreword by Anthony Arnove, The Essential Chomsky is an unprecedented, comprehensive overview of Chomsky's thought.
The Eaves of Heaven: A Life in Three Wars
Andrew X. Pham - 2008
From the award-winning author of Catfish and Mandala comes a son's searing memoir of his Vietnamese father's experiences over the course of three wars.
Small Miracles of the Holocaust: Extraordinary Coincidences of Faith, Hope, and Survival
Yitta Halberstam - 2008
From the authors of the bestselling Small Miracles series comes this inspirational collection of over 50 stories - each with the upbeat twist ending that has become the trademark of this remarkable series. The authors, both second-generation Holocaust survivors, have culled stories from before, during, and after the Holocaust that demonstrate the full strength and power of the human spirit. Stories reaffirming that nothing truly happens by accident… Even during the worst of times small miracles did happen - and the legacies of those individuals live on.
"They Have Killed Papa Dead!": The Road to Ford's Theatre, Abraham Lincoln's Murder, and the Rage for Vengeance
Anthony S. Pitch - 2008
Its impact is felt to this day, and the basic story is known to all. Anthony Pitch’s thrilling account of the Lincoln conspiracy and its aftermath transcends the mere facts of that awful night during which dashing actor John Wilkes Booth shot Lincoln in the head and would-be assassin Lewis Payne butchered Secretary of State William Seward in the bed of his own home. “They Have Killed Papa Dead!” transports the reader to one of the most breathtaking moments in history, and reveals much that is new about the stories, passions, and times of those who shaped this great tragedy.Virtually every word of Anthony Pitch’s account is based on primary source material: new quotes from previously unpublished diaries, letters and journals – authentic contemporary voices writing with freshness and clarity as eyewitnesses or intimate participants – new images, a new vision and understanding of one of America’s defining moments. With an unwavering fidelity to historical accuracy, Pitch provides new confirmation of threats against the president-elect’s life as he traveled to Washington by train for his first inauguration, and a vivid personal account of John Wilkes Booth being physically restrained from approaching Lincoln at his second inauguration. Perhaps most chillingly, new details come to light about conditions in the special prison where the civilian conspirators accused of participating in the Lincoln assassination endured tortuous conditions in extreme isolation and deprivation, hooded and shackled, before and even during their military trial. Pitch masterfully synthesizes the findings of his prodigious research into a tight, gripping narrative that adds important new insights to our national story.
Masters and Commanders: The Military Geniuses Who Led the West to Victory in World War II
Andrew Roberts - 2008
During the Second World War the master strategy of the West was shaped by four titanic figures: Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt, and their respective military commanders - General Sir Alan Brooke and General George C. Marshall. Each man was tough-willed and strong minded. And each was certain he knew best how to achieve victory. Drawing on previously unpublished material, including for the first time verbatim reports of Churchill's War Cabinet meetings, Andrew Roberts's acclaimed history recreates with vivid immediacy the fiery debates and political maneuverings, the rebuffs and the charm, the explosive rows and dramatic reconciliations, as the masters and commanders of the Western Alliance fought each other over the best way to fight Adolf Hitler. 'History as it should be written; a gripping narrative' Michael Gove, Mail on Sunday Books of the Year 'Scintillating historical writing on the whole rich panorama of Britain and the US at war' Martin Gilbert, Evening Standard 'A compelling analysis of American and British military strategy during the war. He also tells a profoundly human story' Laurence Rees, Sunday Times 'A masterpiece' Christopher Silvester, Daily Express 'Britain's finest contemporary military historian' Economist Books of the Year Andrew Roberts is a biographer and historian of international renown whose previous books include Salisbury: Victorian Titan (1999), which won the Wolfson History Prize and the James Stern Silver Pen Award for Non-Fiction; Napoleon and Wellington (2001); Hitler and Churchill: Secrets of Leadership (2003), which coincided with four-part BBC2 history series, and A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900 (2005).
Desperate Passage: The Donner Party's Perilous Journey West
Ethan Rarick - 2008
After months of grueling travel, the 81 men, women and children would be trapped for a brutal winter with little food and only primitive shelter. The conclusion is known: by spring of the next year, the Donner Party was synonymous with the most harrowing extremes of human survival. But until now, the full story of what happened, what it tells us about human nature and about America's westward expansion, remained shrouded in myth.Drawing on fresh archaeological evidence, recent research on topics ranging from survival rates to snowfall totals, and heartbreaking letters and diaries made public by descendants a century-and-a-half after the tragedy, Ethan Rarick offers an intimate portrait of the Donner party and their unimaginable ordeal: a mother who must divide her family, a little girl who shines with courage, a devoted wife who refuses to abandon her husband, a man who risks his life merely to keep his word. But Rarick resists both the gruesomely sensationalist accounts of the Donner party as well as later attempts to turn the survivors into archetypal pioneer heroes. The Donner Party, Rarick writes, is a story of hard decisions that were neither heroic nor villainous. Often, the emigrants displayed a more realistic and typically human mixture of generosity and selfishness, an alloy born of necessity.A fast-paced, heart-wrenching, clear-eyed narrative history, A Desperate Hope casts new light on one of America's most horrific encounters between the dream of a better life and the harsh realities such dreams so often must confront.
Warlord: A Life of Winston Churchill at War, 1874-1945
Carlo D'Este - 2008
Warlord is the definitive chronicle of Churchill's crucial role as one of the world's most renowned military leaders, from his early adventures on the North-West Frontier of colonial India and the Boer War through his extraordinary service in both World Wars.Even though Churchill became one of the towering political leaders of the twentieth century, his childhood ambition was to be a soldier. Using extensive, untapped archival materials, D'Este reveals important and untold observations from Churchill's personal physician, as well as other colleagues and family members, in order to illuminate his character as never before. Warlord explores Churchill's strategies behind the major military campaigns of World War I and World War II—both his dazzling successes and disastrous failures—while also revealing his tumultuous relationships with his generals and other commanders, including Dwight D. Eisenhower.As riveting as the man it portrays, Warlord is a masterful, unsparing portrait of one of history's most fascinating and influential leaders during what was arguably the most crucial event in human history.
Josef Koudelka: Invasion 68: Prague
Josef Koudelka - 2008
That all changed on the night of August 21, when Warsaw Pact tanks invaded the city of Prague, ending the short-lived political liberalization in Czechoslovakia that came to be known as the Prague Spring. Koudelka had returned home the day before from photographing gypsies in Romania. In the midst of the turmoil of the Soviet-led invasion, he took a series of photographs which were miraculously smuggled out of the country. A year after they reached New York, Magnum Photos distributed the images credited to "an unknown Czech photographer" to avoid reprisals. The intensity and significance of the images earned the still-anonymous photographer the Robert Capa Award. Sixteen years would pass before Koudelka could safely acknowledge authorship. Forty years after the invasion, this impressive monograph features nearly 250 of these searing images--most of them published here for the first time--personally selected by Koudelka from his extensive archive. Interspersed with the images are press and propaganda quotations from the time, also selected by Koudelka, alongside a text by three Czech historians. Though the images gathered in this remarkable publication document a specific historical event, their transformative quality still resonates.
The Execution of Willie Francis: Race, Murder, and the Search for Justice in the American South
Gilbert King - 2008
Martinsville, Louisiana, a seventeen-year-old black boy was scheduled for execution by electric chair. Willie Francis had been charged with murder; his trial had been brief; his death sentence never in doubt. When the executioners flipped the switch, Willie screamed and writhed as electricity coursed through his body. But Willie Francis did not die.Having miraculously survived, Willie was informed that the state would attempt to execute him a second time within a week. The ensuing legal battle went all the way to the Supreme Court, asking: Could the state electrocute someone twice? A gripping narrative about a brutal crime and its shocking aftermath, The Execution of Willie Francis offers a heroic—and ultimately tragic—tale of one man's quest for moral justice in a nation still blinded by race.
The Invention of the Jewish People
Shlomo Sand - 2008
Was there really a forced exile in the first century, at the hands of the Romans? Should we regard the Jewish people, throughout two millennia, as both a distinct ethnic group and a putative nation—returned at last to its Biblical homeland?Shlomo Sand argues that most Jews actually descend from converts, whose native lands were scattered far across the Middle East and Eastern Europe. The formation of a Jewish people and then a Jewish nation out of these disparate groups could only take place under the sway of a new historiography, developing in response to the rise of nationalism throughout Europe. Beneath the biblical back fill of the nineteenth-century historians, and the twentieth-century intellectuals who replaced rabbis as the architects of Jewish identity, The Invention of the Jewish People uncovers a new narrative of Israel’s formation, and proposes a bold analysis of nationalism that accounts for the old myths.After a long stay on Israel’s bestseller list, and winning the coveted Aujourd’hui Award in France, The Invention of the Jewish People is finally available in English. The central importance of the conflict in the Middle East ensures that Sand’s arguments will reverberate well beyond the historians and politicians that he takes to task. Without an adequate understanding of Israel’s past, capable of superseding today’s opposing views, diplomatic solutions are likely to remain elusive. In this iconoclastic work of history, Shlomo Sand provides the intellectual foundations for a new vision of Israel’s future.
Lincoln and His Admirals
Craig L. Symonds - 2008
Written by naval historian Craig L. Symonds, Lincoln and His Admirals unveils an aspect of Lincoln's presidency unexamined by historians until now, revealing how he managed the men who ran the naval side of the Civil War, and how the activities of the Union Navy ultimately affected the course of history. Beginning with a gripping account of the attempt to re-supply Fort Sumter--a comedy of errors that shows all too clearly the fledgling president's inexperience--Symonds traces Lincoln's steady growth as a wartime commander-in-chief. Absent a Secretary of Defense, he would eventually become de facto commander of joint operations along the coast and on the rivers. That involved dealing with the men who ran the Navy: the loyal but often cranky Navy Secretary Gideon Welles, the quiet and reliable David G. Farragut, the flamboyant and unpredictable Charles Wilkes, the ambitious ordnance expert John Dahlgren, the well-connected Samuel Phillips Lee, and the self-promoting and gregarious David Dixon Porter. Lincoln was remarkably patient; he often postponed critical decisions until the momentum of events made the consequences of those decisions evident. But Symonds also shows that Lincoln could act decisively. Disappointed by the lethargy of his senior naval officers on the scene, he stepped in and personally directed an amphibious assault on the Virginia coast, a successful operation that led to the capture of Norfolk. The man who knew "but little of ships" had transformed himself into one of the greatest naval strategists of his age. Co-winner of the 2009 Lincoln Prize Winner of the 2009 Barondess/Lincoln Prize by the Civil War Round Table of New YorkJohn Lyman Award of the North American Society for Oceanic HistoryDaniel and Marilyn Laney Prize by the Austin Civil War Round TableNevins-Freeman Prize of the Civil War Round Table of Chicago
History for the Classical Child: The Middle Ages Activity Book: Volume 2: From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of the Renaissance
Susan Wise Bauer - 2008
Children and parents love the activities, ranging from cooking projects to crafts, board games to science experiments, and puzzles to projects.Each Story of the World Activity Book provides a full year of history study when combined with the Textbook, Audiobook, and Tests—each available separately to accompany each volume of The Story of the World Activity Book. Activity Book 2 Grade Recommendation: Grades 1-6.