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In this compelling book, Robert Coles, the celebrated Harvard professor and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, turns his attention to popular music legend Bruce Springsteen, and to the powerful impact Springsteen's work has had both on the lives of his audience and on this country's literary tradition. Coles places Springsteen in the pantheon of American artists--Walt Whitman, William Carlos Williams, Dorothea Lange, and Walker Percy, among others--who understood and were inspired by their "traveling companions in time," the ordinary people of their eras. With wisdom and a unique personal perspective, Coles explores Springsteen's words as contemporary American poetry, and offers firsthand accounts of how people interact with them: A trucker listens to "Blinded by the Light" during long, lonely nights and reminisces about his mother; a schoolteacher is astonished when a usually silent student offers a comparison between "Nebraska" and Conrad's Heart of Darkness; a policeman responds to "American Skin (41 Shots)," reflecting on his own role in his family and community. As these people, and others, candidly discuss the meaning Springsteen's words have in their lives, Coles listens and, with the special insight and compassion that are the trademarks of his art, sheds new light on "The Boss," removing the legendary American rock musician from fan-filled stadiums and placing the poet in a greater social, cultural, and philosophical context. Coles sees Springsteen as a representative of a uniquely American documentary tradition--as a singing and traveling poet who does not simply embody the culture of which he is a part but fully engages it, interacting with its people and creating a conversation that has helped to shape a distinct way of looking at, and living, American life today.
In this book, Coles explores the concept of idealism and why it necessary to the individual and society.
The Call of Stories presents a study of how listening to stories promotes learning and self-discovery.
The Call of Stories presents a study of how listening to stories promotes learning and self-discovery.
Children of Crisis: Selections from the Pulitzer Prize-Winning Five-Volume Children of Crisis Seriesby Robert Coles
In the 1950s Robert Coles began studying, living among, and, above all, listening to American children. The results of his efforts--revealed in five volumes published between 1967 and 1977--constitute one of the most searching and vigorous social studies ever undertaken by one person in the United States. Here, heard often in their own voices, are America's "children of crisis": African American children caught in the throes of the South's racial integration; The children of impoverished migrant workers in Appalachia; Children whose families were transformed by the migration from South to North, from rural to urban communities; Latino, Native American, and Eskimo children in the poorest communities of the American West; The children of America's wealthiest families confronting the burden of their own privilege. This volume restores to print a masterwork of psychological and sociological inquiry--a book that, in its focus on how children learn and develop in the face of rapid change and social upheaval, speaks directly and pointedly to our own times. Robert Coles is a professor of psychiatry and medical humanities at the Harvard Medical School, a research psychiatrist for the Harvard University Health Services, and the James Agee Professor of Social Ethics at Harvard College.
The notoriety of this book rests on two pretty shaky pillars: first, the initial section of the book is supposed to reveal the effects of segregation and desegregation battles on children, mainly through their drawings, which have become almost iconographic; second, the book was the first major effort to look at segregationists as if they were normal human beings and not vile mutants. But the child studies seem dubious and the novelty of the even handed treatment of white Southerners is more of an indictment of the prevailing intellectual hegemony of the 60's than a recommendation for this book in particular.
An examination of childhood in Eskimo, Chicano and Indian communities.
This renowned journalist's classic Pulitzer Prize winning investigation of schizophrenia--now reissued with a new postscript--follows a flamboyant and fiercely intelligent young woman as she struggles in the throes of mental illness."Sylvia Frumkin" was born in 1948 and began showing signs of schizophrenia in her teens. She spent the next seventeen years in and out of mental institutions. In 1978, reporter Susan Sheehan took an interest in her and, for more than two years, became immersed in her life: talking with her, listening to her monologues, sitting in on consultations with doctors--even, for a period, sleeping in the bed next to her in a psychiatric center. With Sheehan, we become witness to Sylvia's plight: her psychotic episodes, the medical struggle to control her symptoms, and the overburdened hospitals that, more often than not, she was obliged to call home. The resulting book, first published in 1982, was hailed as an extraordinary achievement: harrowing, humanizing, moving, and bitingly funny. Now, some two decades later, Is There No Place on Earth for Me? continues to set the standard for accounts of mental illness.
A Life in Medicine collects stories, poems, and essays by and for those in the healing profession, who are struggling to keep up with the science while staying true to the humanitarian goals at the heart of their work. Organized around the central themes of altruism, knowledge, skill, and duty, the book includes contributions from well-known authors, doctors, nurses, practitioners, and patients. Provocative and moving pieces address what it means to care for a life in a century of unprecedented scientific advances, examining issues of hope and healing from both ends of the stethoscope.
In this rich and illuminating book, the Pulitzer Prize-winning, bestselling author Robert Coles creates a portrait of moral leadership--what it is, and how it is achieved--through stories of people who have led and inspired him: Robert Kennedy, Dorothy Day, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Erik Erikson, a Boston bus driver, teachers in college, medical school, and elementary school, among others.Coles tells how to be a moral leader and shows how the intervention of one person can change the course of history, as well as influence the day-to-day quality of life in our homes, schools, communities, and nation. We need to "hand one another along" in life, says Coles, quoting his friend Walker Percy, and in Lives of Moral Leadership he explores how each of us can be engaged in a continual and mutual life-giving process of personal and national leadership development. Coles discusses how the actions of the American president affect the way people feel about themselves and the country, and-citing the influence of Shakespeare's Henry V on Robert Kennedy, and of Tolstoy's Anna Karenina on his own mother--explains how reading literature can motivate action and growth. The way in which moral leaders emerge today, and for all time, comes vividly to light in this brilliant book by one of America's finest teachers and writers.From the Hardcover edition.
Lives We Carry with Us gathers together for the first time a diverse cross section of Coles's profiles, originally published in our premier magazines over the span of five decades but never before collected in book form. Depicting the famous, the lesser known, and the unknown, the profiles here include portraits of James Agee, Dorothy Day, Erik Erikson, Dorothea Lange, Walker Percy, Bruce Springsteen, Simone Weil, and William Carlos Williams among others. Coles has chosen figures whom he considers his guardian spirits-individuals who shaped, challenged, and inspired one of the great moral voices of our era.Profiles include:James Rufus Agee (1909 - 1955) was was one of the most influential film critics in the U.S. He was the author of Let Us Now Praise Famous Men (to which he contributed the text and Walker Evans contributed the photographs) which grew out of an assignment the two men accepted in 1936 to produce a magazine article on the conditions among white sharecropper families in the American South. His autobiographical novel, A Death in the Family (1957), won the author a posthumous Pulitzer Prize. Simone Weil (1909 - 1943) was a French philosopher, activist, and religious searcher, whose death in 1943 was hastened by starvation. Weil published during her lifetime only a few poems and articles. With her posthumous works --16 volumes in all -- Weil has earned a reputation as one of the most original thinkers of her era. T.S. Eliot described her as "a woman of genius, of a kind of genius akin to that of the saints." William Carlos Williams (1883 - 1963), was an American poet who was also a pediatrician and general practitioner of medicine. Williams "worked harder at being a writer than he did at being a physician," wrote biographer Linda Wagner-Martin; but during his long lifetime, Williams excelled at both. He considered himself a socialist and opponent of capitalism and is probably spinning in his grave at the current state of things, economically and socially. One of his best known poems is an "apology poem" taught to most American children in elementary school called "This Is Just to Say" : "I have eaten / the plums / that were in / the icebox / and which / you were probably /saving / for breakfast. / Forgive me / they were delicious / so sweet /and so cold."Dorothy Day (1897 - 1980) was an American journalist and social activist who became most famous for founding, with Peter Maurin, the Catholic Worker movement, a nonviolent, pacifist movement which combines direct aid for the poor and homeless with nonviolent direct action on their behalf. Dorothea Lange (1895 - 1965) was a hugely influential American documentary photographer and photojournalist, best know for her Depression-era work for the Farm Security Administration (FSA). Lange's photographs humanized the tragic consequences of the Great Depression and profoundly influenced the development of documentary photography, one of Robert Coles' great passions.Erik Erikson (1902 - 1994) was a Danish-German-American developmental psychologist and psychoanalyst known for his theories on social development of human beings. He may be most famous for coining the phrase "identity crisis." Erikson's greatest innovation was to postulate not five stages of development, as Freud has done with his psychosexual stages, but eight. Erik Erikson believed that every human being goes through a certain number of stages to reach his or her full development, theorizing eight stages, that a human being goes through from birth to death.Walker Percy (1916 - 1990) was an American southern author best known for his philosophical novels set in and around New Orleans, the first of which, The Moviegoer, won the National Book Award for Fiction in 1962. He devoted his literary life to the exploration of "the dislocation of man in the modern age." His work displays a unique combination of existential questioning, Southern sensibility, and deep Catholic faith -- all themes of great interest to Coles.Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen (born September 23, 1949), has long been in Rob...
Since the late 1950's, Robert Coles has been studying, living with, and, above all, listening to the American poor. The result is one of the most vigorous and searching social studies ever undertaken by one man in the United States. Migrants, Sharecroppers, Mountaineers is the second volume in Dr. Coles's award-winning series, Children of Crisis. In it, he listens to three groups: the migrant workers who travel the eastern coast of this country, picking crops day after day; the sharecroppers and tenant farmers who live on isolated southern plantations, just as their ancestors did as slaves; and the mountaineers of Appalachia, whose only choice lies between coal mining and starvation.
The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the bestselling The Spiritual Life of Children now explores how to develop character in children, from infancy through the teenage years. During three stages in the "moral archaeology of childhood, " Coles shows how to spot moral crossroads, and what to do about them.From the Hardcover edition.
From ancient times to the present day, here are indispensable insights on political power and leadership as expressed in the novels, plays, and poetry of the world's greatest artists and intellectuals. Adapted from a course taught at Harvard by Pulitzer Prize--winning author Robert Coles, Political Leadership features scenes, stories, and speeches that pierce to the core of how and why some lead and others follow. In Felix Holt, the Radical, George Eliot observes that progressive reformers can be even more self-serving than their conservative counterparts; in The Prime Minister, Anthony Trollope suggests that honest men must cope with the corruption of politics-or leave leadership entirely to the crooked; and the works of Nadine Gordimer and George Orwell reveal that those who overturn tyrants often envy their power and repeat their mistakes. Anyone trying to understand today's confused and violent world will be both challenged and inspired by this unique and important collection. From the Trade Paperback edition.
In this eighth and final volume in his Pulitzer Prizewinning Children of Crisis series, Coles examines the religious and spiritual lives of children. By using children's own words and pictures, Coles presents their deepest feelings.
The year is 1960, and six-year-old Ruby Bridges and her family have recently moved from Mississippi to New Orleans in search of a better life. When a judge orders Ruby to attend first grade at William Frantz Elementary, an all-white school, Ruby must face angry mobs of parents who refuse to send their children to school with her. [This text is listed as an example that meets Common Core Standards in English language arts in grades 2-3 at http://www.corestandards.org.]
The Call of Stories presents a study of how listening to stories promotes learning and self-discovery. Copyright © Libri GmbH. All rights reserved.
"Mauriac's best novel. "--Catholic World"A lucid and penetrating study . . . Mauriac proves himself as good a storyteller as he is a psychologist. "--The New York Times"A most admirable and exciting novel. "--New StatesmanThe masterpiece of one of the twentieth century's greatest Catholic writers,Vipers' Tangle tells the story of Monsieur Louis, an embittered aging lawyer who has spread his misery to his entire estranged family. Louis writes a journal to explain to them--and to himself--why his soul has been deformed, why his heart seems like a foul nest of twisted serpents. Mauriac's novel masterfully explores the corruption caused by pride, avarice, and hatred, and its opposite--the divine grace that remains available to each of us until the very moment of our deaths. It is the unforgettable tale of the battle for one man's soul.