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Henry Morgan, who was born in Wales in 1635 and died in Port Royal, Jamaica, in 1688, was an unusual sort of leader. Inspiring the respect and admiration of his fellows, he led them to undertake daring raids on Spain's possessions in the New World; yet he commanded neither an army nor a navy. Nor was he a political ruler, although his exploits affected the power politics of Europe and earned him a knighthood. In plain language, Henry Morgan was a leader of thieves, a 'prince' among a group of outcasts, desperadoes, and failed gentlemen known as buccaneers. Though movies and novels have romanticized them, the buccaneers were in fact a ruthless group who got their way by brutal means. Their motives were pure self-interest, yet they operated with the permission of certain European nations in order to break the Spanish monopoly in the West Indies. Vividly outlining the political and economic circumstances that allowed the buccaneers to flourish, and freshly evoking both life at sea and life in the colonies in the seventeenth century, Albert Marrin shows how Henry Morgan was a particular response to forces that are still with us. War, poverty, greed, bigotry, and oppression play themselves out, albeit differently, in our lives today. Albert Marrin is the chairman of the history department at Yeshiva University, and he has written many award-winning nonfiction books for young adults, including Commander in Chief: Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War (Dutton).
In Tesla: Man Out of Time, Margaret Cheney explores the brilliant and prescient mind of one of the twentieth century's greatest scientists and inventors. Called a madman by his enemies, a genius by others, and an enigma by nearly everyone, Nikola Tesla was, without a doubt, a trailblazing inventor who created astonishing, sometimes world-transforming devices that were virtually without theoretical precedent. Tesla not only discovered the rotating magnetic field -- the basis of most alternating-current machinery -- but also introduced us to the fundamentals of robotics, computers, and missile science. Almost supernaturally gifted, unfailingly flamboyant and neurotic, Tesla was troubled by an array of compulsions and phobias and was fond of extravagant, visionary experimentations. He was also a popular man-about-town, admired by men as diverse as Mark Twain and George Westinghouse, and adored by scores of society beauties. From Tesla's childhood in Yugoslavia to his death in New York in the 1940s, Cheney paints a compelling human portrait and chronicles a lifetime of discoveries that radically altered -- and continue to alter -- the world in which we live. Tesla: Man Out of Time is an in-depth look at the seminal accomplishments of a scientific wizard and a thoughtful examination of the obsessions and eccentricities of the man behind the science.
"Tessie and Pearlie" is Joy Horowitz's moving, poignant memoir of her two grandmothers, both in their 90s, both immigrants, but with very different personalities.
In TESTAMENT FROM PRISON, Georgi Vins, a leader of the Soviet Reform Baptists, shares with us--through letters, essays, and poetry sent to the West--devastating evidence of the limitations of religious freedom in the U.S.S.R. today. But Vins, though still a prisoner, also offers a message of hope
Dear Mother,I was very glad to hear from home this morning. It is the first time since I left Otterville. We marched from Sedalia 120 miles. . . . I almost feel anxious to be in a battle & yet I am almost afraid. I feel very brave sometimes & think if I should be in an engagement, I never would leave the field alive unless the stars & stripes floated triumphant. I do not know how it may be. If there is a battle & I should fall, tell with pride & not with grief that I fell in defense of liberty. Pray that I may be a true soldier. Not since Stephen Crane's The Red Badge of Courage have the trials and tribulations of a private soldier of the Civil War been told with such beguiling force. The Red Badge of Courage, however, was fiction. This story is true. In Testament,Benson Bobrick draws upon an extraordinarily rich but hitherto untapped archive of material to create a continuous narrative of how that war was fought and lived. Here is virtually the whole theater of conflict in the West, from its beginnings in Missouri, through Kentucky and Tennessee, to the siege of Atlanta under Sherman, as experienced by Bobrick's great-grandfather, Benjamin W. ("Webb") Baker, an articulate young Illinois recruit. Born and raised not far from the Lincoln homestead in Coles County, Webb had stood in the audience of one of the Lincoln-Douglas debates, become a staunch Unionist, and answered one of Abraham Lincoln's first calls for volunteers. The ninety-odd letters on which his story is based are fully equal to the best letters the war produced, especially by a common soldier; but their wry intelligence, fortitude, and patriotic fervor also set them apart with a singular and still-undying voice. In the end, that voice blends with the author's own, as the book becomes a poignant tribute to his great-grandfather's life -- and to all the common soldiers of the nation's bloodiest war.
In 1915, the author enlisted as a nurse in the armed services. She explores the politics and hopes of those people who came of age as war broke out.
Young Anita Valerio, radical lesbian feminist, poet and performance artist realizes she is transsexual and begins testosterone hormone treatment as the first stage of transitioning to the male gender and renaming herself Max Wolf Valerio. This autobiography follows Valerio from childhood into his mid 30's. He analyzes the differences between the genders that the roles of estrogen and testosterone play. As he transitions, he muses and compares various issues, such as authority, emotional intensity, territoriality, violence, social constructs, and intensity of sexual behaviors. This book is quite compelling both for the personal process and Valerio's ability to question normative male behaviors as he finds himself responding to both the testosterone and the male culture.
Jack commanded a Marine Company during the bloody battle for Iwo Jima. There he earned the nation is highest decoration, The Medal of Honor, posthumously. Before the Marines there was football and baseball at Ennis High School, Texas Military College, Baylor University, and then football with the New York Giants.
Given its affinity with questions of identity, autobiography offers a way into the interior space between author and reader, especially when writers define themselves in terms of religion. In his exploration of this "textual intimacy," Wesley Kort begins with a theorization of what it means to say who one is and how one's self-account as a religious person stands in relation to other forms of self-identification. He then provides a critical analysis of autobiographical texts by nine contemporary American writers--including Maya Angelou, Philip Roth, and Anne Lamott--who give religion a positive place in their accounts of who they are. Finally, in disclosing his own religious identity, Kort concludes with a meditation on several meanings of the word assumption.
Thabo Mbeki has devoted his life to the people of South Africa, first as a courageous fighter against apartheid and currently as president of his beloved nation, helping to heal the wounds caused by decades of oppression. His success is even more astounding considering the seemingly insurmountable obstacles he encountered early in life: His activist father spent many years in prison because of his political beliefs. Close relatives disappeared, never to be seen or heard from again. And Mbeki himself was forced to live in exile for nearly 30 years. What gave him the strength and determination to continue his struggle? How did the little boy from a small village go on to become South Africa's president? This revealing new biography answers these questions and more, exploring the life and accomplishments of this remarkable world leader.
Approaching 50, Mark Radcliffe decided to write about his life, most importantly, his time in music. But crucially, he only wanted to write about the most interesting days and not the dull ones in between. With predictable good taste, Mark takes his title from the Kinks' song and has written an entertaining, funny book worthy of such a pedigree. Mark's family life is covered by "The Day My Mother Hit Me With a Golf Club," his school life by "The Day I Ruined a Perfectly Good Suit" and "The Day I Got My First Guitar;" through his epiphany of the power of music in "The Day I Met the Band Who Changed My Life" and his starstruck meeting with childhood hero, David Bowie. Many other stars are covered too, for example in "The Day I Went to Kate Bush's House for Cheese Flan," and "The Day Mick Jagger Was Taller Than Me. " He's very funny when recounting his days working at the BBC in 1980s and 1990s (how, when bored, he and colleagues invented a fictional department), winningStars in Their Eyesas Shane MacGowan, and so on. Yet, among the laughter are more sober days, such as the one when he learned John Peel had died. A brief history of both one man's life and his love affair with music, this uniquely entertaining memoir will appeal not just to music fans but to connoisseurs of British popular culture.
"You're going to read--I promise you that." Little Trisha is overjoyed at the thought of starting school and learning how to read. But right from the start, when she tries to read, all the letters and numbers just get jumbled up. And her classmates make matters worse by calling her "dummy" and "toad." Then, in fifth grade, a new teacher comes. A real character! He sees right through the sad little girl to the artist she really is. And when he discovers Trisha's secret--that she still can't read--he sets out to help her prove to herself that she can. And will! The autobiographical Thank You, Mr. Falker is a story close to author Patricia Polacco's heart. It is her personal song of thanks and praise to teachers like Mr. Falker, who quietly but surely change the lives of the children they teach.
Squanto, a Native American, made history. He was a member of the Patuxet tribe that lived along the shores of Massachusetts. Squanto became famous for helping the Pilgrims survive. Squanto also helped the Pilgrims celebrate their first harvest festival in America. The Pilgrims called him Squanto. Do you know that Squanto's real name was Tisquantum? Squanto grew up learning how to live as a Wampanoag. Do you know that he used these skills to help the Pilgrims? Squanto grew up tall and strong. Do you know that as a boy he liked to play a rough, tough ball game on the beach? Squanto learned how to survive in the woods on his own. Do you know he had to spend a winter alone before he could become a full member of his tribe? Squanto lived close to the shore. Do you know an English sea captain kidnapped him and took him to England? Squanto learned by watching and listening. Do you know that he learned to speak English? Squanto returned to his home after nine years in England. Do you know he was kidnapped again and taken to Spain this time? Squanto came home again. Do you know that when he returned none of his Patuxet people were alive? Squanto was sent by Massasoit, the chief of the Wampanoag, to talk with the Pilgrims. Do you know Squanto helped make a protective treaty between the Native Americans and the Pilgrims that lasted forty years? Squanto celebrated the Pilgrims' first harvest festival in America. Do you know that Squanto's people celebrated their harvest festival with a feast and by giving thanks every year, too? The answers to these questions lie in who Squanto was as a boy and as a young man. This book is about Squanto before he made history.
A hilarious, poignant memoir of one woman's experience of menopause.
Susie Weksler was only eight when Hitler's forces invaded her city of Vilnius, Lithuania. Soon her family would face the hunger and fear of the Vilnius ghetto, but worse was to come. When the ghetto was liquidated, some Jews were selected for forced labor camps; the rest were killed. Susie would live because of the ingenuity and courage of her mother. It was her mother who disguised Susie as an adult to fool the camp guards; who fed her body and soul through gruesome conditions in three concentration camps; who showed her the power of the human spirit to survive. This harrowing memoir portrays the best and worst of humanity in heartbreaking and compelling scenes that you will never forget.
Jarvis Jay Masters has taken an extraordinary journey of faith. Strangely enough, his moment of enlightenment came behind the bars of San Quentin's death row. In this compelling memoir, inmate and author Jarvis Jay Masters takes us from the arms of his heroin-addicted mother to an abusive foster home, on his escape to the illusory freedom of the streets and through lonely nights spent in bus stations and juvenile homes, and finally to life inside the walls of San Quentin State Prison. Using the nub and filler from a ballpoint pen (the only writing instrument allowed him in solitary confinement), Masters chronicles the story of a bright boy who turns to a life of crime, and of a penitent man who embraces Buddhism to find hope in this ultimately inspirational story. Masters has written his remarkable story as a cautionary tale for anyone who might be tempted to follow in his footsteps, and as a plea for under-standing to a world that too often ignores the plight of the forgotten members of society. His personal story dramatically reminds us all that freedom and opportunity are not to be taken for granted, and that no matter what their neighborhood, no matter what their race, every child matters.
That Mean Old Yesterday is an astonishing coming-of-age memoir by a young woman who survived the foster care system to become an award-winning journalist. No one would ever imagine that the vibrant, smart, and attractive Stacey Patton had a childhood from hell. Once a foster child who found a home, she was supposed to be among the lucky. On a rainy night in November 1999,a shoeless Stacey, promising student at NYU, headed down a New Jersey street toward her adoptive parents' house. She carried a gun in her pocket, and she kept repeating to herself that she would pull the trigger. She wanted to kill them. Or so she thought. This is a story of how a typical American family can be undermined by its own effort to be perfect on the surface. After all, with God-fearing, house-proud, and hardworking adoptive parents, Stacey appeared to beat the odds. But her mother was tyrannical, and her father, either so in love with or in fear of his wife, turned a blind eye to the abuse she heaped on their love-starved little girl. In That Mean Old Yesterday, a little girl rises above the tyranny of an overzealous mother by channeling her intellectual energy into schoolwork. Wise beyond her years, she can see that her chances for survival are advanced through her struggle to get into an elite boarding school. She uses all she has, a brilliant mind, to link her experience to the legacy of American slavery and to successfully frame her understanding of why her good adoptive parents did terrible things to her by realizing that they had terrible things done to them.
"That Summer In Paris" brings to the fore the fabulous summer of 1929 when the literary capital of North America moved to La Rive Gauche--the Left Bank of the Seine River--in Paris. Ernest Hemingway was reading proofs of "A Farewell to Arms", and a few blocks away F. Scott Fitzgerald was struggling with "Tender Is the Night". As his first published book rose to fame in New York, Morley Callaghan arrived in Paris to share the felicities of literary life, not just with his two friends, Hemingway and Fitzgerald, but also with fellow writers James Joyce, Ford Madox Ford, and Robert McAlmon. Amidst these tangled relations, some friendships flourished while others failed.
Britain's first female prime minister remains a political figure of almost mythical proportions. Margaret Thatcher divided a political nation, became a cultural icon, and was the longest-serving prime minister of the twentieth century. Her period in government coincided with extraordinary changes in British society and in Britain's place in the world. Thatcher's Britain tells the story of Thatcherism for a generation with no personal memories of the 80s, as well as for those who want to revisit the polemics of their youth. It seeks to rescue Thatcher from being seen as John the Baptist for Tony Blair, stresses that Thatcherism was not a timeless phenomenon, but rooted in the 70s and 80s, and focuses our attention away from her legend, to what her government actually did during this tumultuous period in British history.
Sister Thea Bowman spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ as only an African American born in 1937 in Yazoo City, Mississippi, could. Throughout her adult life, she embraced Catholicism and religious life and never abandoned the beautiful gift of her "blackness. " It was her life's mission to share her rich cultural heritage and spirituality in song, prayer, teaching, and preaching. As a child, Thea Bowman converted to Catholicism, and as an adult chose a life as a Franciscan Sister of Perpetual Adoration. As a black religious sister in a predominantly white world, Sister Thea was able to cross cultural boundaries and share her cultural and spiritual gifts while learning and uplifting the cultural gifts of others. This book joyfully expounds the thoughts, memories, and reflections of this devoted Franciscan woman, a proud maiden of Mississippi, a prophetic preacher, and a tenacious teacher.
Years in the making, here is the unforgettable life story of an African American Woman who brought joy to the whole world and changed the way people thought of themselves. She fought prejudice, suspicion, hatred, sadness, and all the things that drive people apart. Sister Thea Bowman, a pioneering leader of interracial relations, brought the experience of growing up a black girl in civil-rights-era Mississippi to a convent of white Catholic sisters in Wisconsin, and then to the world beyond. Her groundbreaking work across the United States and overseas helping people to build interracial bridges during the 1980s has been the subject of numerous articles, books, and TV shows.
Traces the lives of four black writers who wrote of the Negro experience in eighteenth-and nineteenth-century America: Jupiter Hammon, George Moses Horton, William Wells Brown, and Charles Waddell Chesnutt.
The History of the Second World War by Winston S. Churchill. Volume 2 of 6.
"Our lives are Swiss," Emily Dickinson wrote in 1859, "So still--so cool. " But over the Alps, "Italy stands the other side." For Dickinson, as for many other writers and artists, Italy has been the land of light, a seductive source of invention, enchantment, and freedom. So it was for Helen Barolini, who, as a student in Rome after World War II, wrote her first poetry and gave birth to her own creative life, reinvigorating her mother tongue. In this book, Barolini celebrates the lives of other women whose imaginations succumbed to the lure of Italy. Here Barolini profiles six gifted women transformed by Italy's mythic appeal. Unlike Barolini herself, they were not daughters of the great Italian diaspora. Rather, they were drawn to an idea of "Italy" and its gifts--in whose welcome a new self could be created. Or discovered. Emily Dickinson traveled to Italy only in the imaginative genius of her verse. Margaret Fuller struggled alongside her Italian lover in the political revolutions that gave birth to the Italian Republic, while the novelist and short-story writer Constance Fennimore Woolson found her home in Venice and Florence. Here, too, is the flamboyant artist Mabel Dodge Luhan, entertaining at her villa near Florence; and Marguerite Chapin of Connecticut, who married an Italian prince and in Rome founded the premier literary review of the mid-century, Botteghe Oscure. Finally, here is Iris Cutting Origo, the Anglo-American heiress who, with her Italian nobleman husband, built a Tuscan estate, where she wrote acclaimed biographies--and created a refuge from Mussolini's fascism. Linking these lives, Barolini shows, is the transforming catalyst of change in a new land. Their Other Side is a wise, warm, and deeply felt literary journey that brilliantly captures the enduring effects of Italy as a place, a culture, and an experience. Praise for Helen Barolini"An impassioned and magnificent contribution to our knowledge of what it has meant and means still to be an ethnic American and woman. . . . a book of heroic recovery and affirmation. "--Alice Walker (on The Dream Book)"Large in scope, in depth, and in the gift of narrative. "--Cynthia Ozick (on Umbertina)
In depth biography of the first American President of the twentieth century.
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