Seven Words That Can Change the World – A New Understanding of Sacredness, by Joseph R. Simonetta (Hampton Roads Publishing Company) is an encouraging little essay. The title, the cover, the preface, the introduction, and various other trappings suggest that it is a religious self-help book that will probably remind the reader of the importance of connecting with his or her inner whatchamacallit in order to find true peace and increased market potential. But the body of the book consists
“Sexual Personae,” By Camille Paglia.
Camille Paglia’s SEXUAL PERSONAE is a huge book in every sense. It makes me want to read and reread a great many books, examine and re-examine a great number of sculptures and paintings. There are in it interpretations of particular works with which I disagree, and others on which I am not qualified to judge, but the big themes in it – the continuity of paganism, the approaches to sex and nature – are a valuable contribution.
Shrub by Molly Ivins and Lou Dubose
This book is a warning not to elect George W. and of course it’s too late, he’s already been appointed. But it will remain useful far into the future to be able to read such an accurate prediction of what sort of president this clown was going to be. Just as people in the future will be curious to examine what exactly our knowledge of global warming was while we went about creating it, some will be curious to read what knowledge we had of this walking
Silver City Smokes
August 14, 2004
Mark your calendar now and plan to go see John Sayles’ new movie “Silver City” when it opens on Friday, September 17. It’s a powerfully entertaining story and – more importantly for any good book or movie this year – it’s powerfully anti-Bush.
Someone told me “Manchurian Candidate” was an anti-Bush movie. I didn’t think so when I saw it, not even in the way that “The Day After Tomorrow” was
Simulating Sex: Aesthetic Representation of Erotic Activity by Steve Bachmann
At a time when pornography has become mainstream and sex haters have gained national political power, it would seem than sex is all around us. But most of us are unaware that much interesting thinking about sex is going on. Mostly, I, for one, find myself wishing people could get their minds onto some OTHER topic for a few minutes. MoveOn.org became a political force by channeling our frustration with Congress’s
Nelson Lichtenstein’s new book, “The State of the Union,” gives a history of labor unions in the United States by way of arguing for the need to restrengthen them, and I think the case is very persuasive.
Lichtenstein weaves together a number of themes to explain the decline in union membership and power. One is increased reliance on individual rights and legal protections. Federal laws ban all sorts of discrimination, endangerment, and abuse, but the federal
The two books that I would most highly recommend to readers in the U.S. today are “A People’s History of the United States,” by Howard Zinn, and “Labor’s Untold Story” by Richard Boyer and Herbert Morais. These books tell a history of the country that is generally kept secret.
“Why Unions Matter” by Michael Yates is a terrific short introduction to something you’ll never learn in school or from the U.S. corporate media: what a labor union is
“Moral Judgment: Does the Abuse Excuse Threaten Our Legal System,” By James Q. Wilson.
James Q. Wilson’s “Moral Judgment: Does the abuse excuse threaten our legal system?” (1997) is a good contribution to a usually muddled discussion. I think that even people, like myself, who disagree with most of Wilson’s attitudes toward criminal justice should agree with most of what he says here.
Wilson favors a vocabulary of religion and traditional philosophy and displays
Freeing Our Press
Sep. 6, 2004
A review of “Our Unfree Press: 100 Years of Radical Media Criticism,” edited and with an introduction by Robert W. McChesney and Ben Scott, published in 2004 by The New Press, 435 pages.
This book collects some stunning examples of U.S. media criticism from 1906 through 2003. The introduction is in many ways a wonderful work of analysis. The primary purpose it lays out for the book is establishing that radical criticism of for-profit media is not new or
Mayor of London Calls Bushies “A Gang of Thugs”
By David Swanson
Ken Livingstone, the Mayor of London, England, threw a bash for anti-war activists this evening and denounced the Bush Administration as “a gang of thugs.” He praised the work of those present from the US and the UK who have worked to end the war, including offering high praise for Cindy Sheehan, who also spoke.
Photo album here: