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The forms of contemporary society and politics are often understood to be diametrically opposed to any expression of the supernatural; what happens when those forms are themselves regarded as manifestations of spirits and other occult phenomena? In Not Quite Shamans, Morten Axel Pedersen explores how the Darhad people of Northern Mongolia's remote Shishged Valley have understood and responded to the disruptive transition to postsocialism by engaging with shamanic beliefs and practices associated with the past. For much of the twentieth century, Mongolia's communist rulers attempted to eradicate shamanism and the shamans who once served as spiritual guides and community leaders. With the transition from a collectivized economy and a one-party state to a global capitalist market and liberal democracy in the 1990s, the people of the Shishged were plunged into a new and harsh world that seemed beyond their control. "Not-quite-shamans"-young, unemployed men whose undirected energies erupted in unpredictable, frightening bouts of violence and drunkenness that seemed occult in their excess- became a serious threat to the fabric of community life. Drawing on long-term fieldwork in Northern Mongolia, Pedersen details how, for many Darhads, the postsocialist state itself has become shamanic in nature. In the ideal version of traditional Darhad shamanism, shamans can control when and for what purpose their souls travel, whether to other bodies, landscapes, or worlds. Conversely, caught between uncontrollable spiritual powers and an excessive display of physical force, the "not-quite-shamans" embody the chaotic forms-the free market, neoliberal reform, and government corruption-that have created such upheaval in peoples' lives. As an experimental ethnography of recent political and economic transformations in Mongolia through the defamiliarizing prism of shamans and their lack, Not Quite Shamans is an attempt to write about as well as theorize postsocialism, and shamanism, in a new way.
Gregory, the author of other books on workplace issues, examines court cases arising under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the First Amendment related to workplace religious disputes. Focusing on the limitations of practicing beliefs at work, he uses cases that illustrate different aspects of religious employment disputes and provides case summaries, so that general readers can better make decisions about work situations, as well as aiding lawyers who do not specialize in employment law. He addresses legal definitions of religion and details cases related to discrimination at various stages of the employment relationship, claims arising out of employment termination, proselytization, employer liability for religious harassment, discrimination experienced by specific groups, public sector issues, exemptions for religious organizations and ministers, accommodation, and retaliation and other issues. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc. , Portland, OR (booknews. com)
In Failure by Design, the Economic Policy Institute's Josh Bivens takes a step back from the acclaimed State of Working America series, building on its wealth of data to relate a compelling narrative of the U. S. economy's struggle to emerge from the Great Recession of 2008. Bivens explains the causes and impact on working Americans of the most catastrophic economic policy failure since the 1920s. As outlined clearly here, economic growth since the late 1970s has been slow and inequitably distributed, largely as a result of poor policy choices. These choices only got worse in the 2000s, leading to an anemic economic expansion. What growth we did see in the economy was fueled by staggering increases in private-sector debt and a housing bubble that artificially inflated wealth by trillions of dollars. As had been predicted, the bursting of the housing bubble had disastrous consequences for the broader economy, spurring a financial crisis and a rise in joblessness that dwarfed those resulting from any recession since the Great Depression. The fallout from the Great Recession makes it near certain that there will be yet another lost decade of income growth for typical families, whose incomes had not been boosted by the previous decade's sluggish and localized economic expansion. In its broad narrative of how the economy has failed to deliver for most Americans over much of the past three decades, Failure by Design also offers compelling graphic evidence on jobs, incomes, wages, and other measures of economic well-being most relevant to low- and middle-income workers. Josh Bivens tracks these trends carefully, giving a lesson in economic history that is readable yet rigorous in its analysis. Intended as both a stand-alone volume and a companion to the new State of Working America website that presents all of the data underlying this cogent analysis, Failure by Design will become required reading as a road map to the economic problems that confront working Americans.
Sacred sites offer believers the possibility of communing with the divine and achieving deeper insight into their faith. Yet their spiritual and cultural importance can lead to competition as religious groups seek to exclude rivals from practicing potentially sacrilegious rituals in the hallowed space and wish to assert their own claims. Holy places thus create the potential for military, theological, or political clashes, not only between competing religious groups but also between religious groups and secular actors. In War on Sacred Grounds, Ron E. Hassner investigates the causes and properties of conflicts over sites that are both venerated and contested; he also proposes potential means for managing these disputes. Hassner illustrates a complex and poorly understood political dilemma with accounts of the failures to reach settlement at Temple Mount/Haram el-Sharif, leading to the clashes of 2000, and the competing claims of Hindus and Muslims at Ayodhya, which resulted in the destruction of the mosque there in 1992. He also addresses more successful compromises in Jerusalem in 1967 and Mecca in 1979. Sacred sites, he contends, are particularly prone to conflict because they provide valuable resources for both religious and political actors yet cannot be divided. The management of conflicts over sacred sites requires cooperation, Hassner suggests, between political leaders interested in promoting conflict resolution and religious leaders who can shape the meaning and value that sacred places hold for believers. Because a reconfiguration of sacred space requires a confluence of political will, religious authority, and a window of opportunity, it is relatively rare. Drawing on the study of religion and the study of politics in equal measure, Hassner's account offers insight into the often-violent dynamics that come into play at the places where religion and politics collide.
Some have claimed that ?War is too important to be left to the generals,? but P. W. Singer asks ?What about the business executives? Breaking out of the guns-for-hire mold of traditional mercenaries, corporations now sell skills and services that until recently only state militaries possessed. Their products range from trained commando teams to strategic advice from generals. This new ?Privatized Military Industry? encompasses hundreds of companies, thousands of employees, and billions of dollars in revenue. Whether as proxies or suppliers, such firms have participated in wars in Africa, Asia, the Balkans, and Latin America. More recently, they have become a key element in U. S. military operations. Private corporations working for profit now sway the course of national and international conflict, but the consequences have been little explored. In this book, Singer provides the first account of the military services industry and its broader implications. Corporate Warriors includes a description of how the business works, as well as portraits of each of the basic types of companies: military providers that offer troops for tactical operations; military consultants that supply expert advice and training; and military support companies that sell logistics, intelligence, and engineering. The privatization of warfare allows startling new capabilities and efficiencies in the ways that war is carried out. At the same time, however, Singer finds that the entrance of the profit motive onto the battlefield raises a series of troubling questions'for democracy, for ethics, for management, for human rights, and for national security.
Building successful start-ups was never quite as easy as it seemed, and the changing economic climate has raised the stakes, reduced the margin of error. New entrepreneurs can't stumble into wealth on the power of half-formed ideas, or turn dreams into reality without doing a lot of homework. It's time to get smart. This book teaches would-be entrepreneurs the skills they need to get through the venture capital process with companies that will survive to grow and succeed. Rob Ryan, a pioneer in the high-tech industry, founded Ascend Communications in 1989, and throughout the nineties provided firms with the infrastructure they needed to keep up with the rapid growth of the Internet. At the beginning of 1999, Ascend was sold to Lucent for $25 billion. Since retiring from Ascend and starting Entrepreneur America, Ryan has helped launch a string of successful companies, including Virtmed, RightNow, and Virtual Ink. All provide electronic solutions to real-world problems, meet existing-rather than manufactured-needs, and save their customers time and money. In Smartups, Ryan focuses on methods he's developed over the years for building a sustainable business that makes money. He emphasizes the importance of testing ideas on customers and making sure that a product offers something new and important. Recognizing a team's key competencies is crucial, Ryan says. He also finds it necessary to take certain steps at the correct stages of a company's inception. Smartups will show you how to turn your idea into a real product, take it to investors, and get your start-up started right.
Temporary agencies place approximately two and a half million people in jobs each day in the United States. Every year, about twelve million people use these placement agencies to find temporary work. Many Americans, even those who desire permanent jobs, decide to enter the labor market through the portal of temporary agencies. Compared with the post-World War II era, when it was a marginal labor practice, temporary employment is today an entrenched feature of jobs and labor markets. How have temporary employment relationships become so widespread and normalized? In The Good Temp, Vicki Smith and Esther B. Neuwirth provide some novel answers to this question. Their provocative analysis is based on an insider's view of the interior dynamics of a temporary help agency in Silicon Valley. It incorporates a historical perspective on the rise of the temporary help service industry. Smith and Neuwirth document how this powerful industry not only created a new market for temporary labor but also played a fundamental role in the erosion of the permanent employment model. They analyze how agencies themselves came to manufacture and market this reinvented product-the good temp, an employee who is effective and efficient, committed, and sometimes preferable to a permanent staff member. Joining extensive participant observation data with historical analysis, The Good Temp contains some surprising findings about temporary employment today and fills a significant gap in our understanding of this important labor relationship.
The past decade has seen phenomenal growth in the development and use of virtual worlds. In one of the most notable, Second Life, millions of people have created online avatars in order to play games, take classes, socialize, and conduct business transactions. Second Life offers a gathering point and the tools for people to create a new world online. Too often neglected in popular and scholarly accounts of such groundbreaking new environments is the simple truth that, of necessity, such virtual worlds emerge from physical workplaces marked by negotiation, creation, and constant change. Thomas Malaby spent a year at Linden Lab, the real-world home of Second Life, observing those who develop and profit from the sprawling, self-generating system they have created. Some of the challenges created by Second Life for its developers were of a very traditional nature, such as how to cope with a business that is growing more quickly than existing staff can handle. Others are seemingly new: How, for instance, does one regulate something that is supposed to run on its own? Is it possible simply to create a space for people to use and then not govern its use? Can one apply these same free-range/free-market principles to the office environment in which the game is produced? "Lindens"-as the Linden Lab employees call themselves-found that their efforts to prompt user behavior of one sort or another were fraught with complexities, as a number of ongoing processes collided with their own interventions. Malaby thoughtfully describes the world of Linden Lab and the challenges faced while he was conducting his in-depth ethnographic research there. He shows how the workers of a very young but quickly growing company were themselves caught up in ideas about technology, games, and organizations, and struggled to manage not only their virtual world but also themselves in a nonhierarchical fashion. In exploring the practices the Lindens employed, he questions what was at stake in their virtual world, what a game really is (and how people participate), and the role of the unexpected in a product like Second Life and an organization like Linden Lab.
Despite the resources at their command, U. S. intelligence services failed to anticipate the fall of the Shah's government in Iran in the late 1970s and, more recently, insisted that Saddam Hussein's regime possessed weapons of mass destruction. In this book, Jervis (International Politics, Columbia University) examines both failures, and rejects the common explanations that attribute these failures to political pressure and groupthink. Instead, the author suggests that the failures were a result of an organizational culture that failed to look into the factors behind intelligence assessments or to investigate alternative explanations. Although Jervis' writing can be on the dry side (especially in the part of the book about Iran), this his book is an essential read for anyone wanting to understand the workings of U. S. intelligence agencies, or the history of U. S. involvement in Iraq and Iran. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc. , Portland, OR (booknews. com)
A few generations ago, college students showed their romantic commitments by exchanging special objects: rings, pins, varsity letter jackets. Pins and rings were handy, telling everyone in local communities that you were spoken for, and when you broke up, the absence of a ring let everyone know you were available again. Is being Facebook official really more complicated, or are status updates just a new version of these old tokens? Many people are now fascinated by how new media has affected the intricacies of relationships and their dissolution. People often talk about Facebook and Twitter as platforms that have led to a seismic shift in transparency and (over)sharing. What are the new rules for breaking up? These rules are argued over and mocked in venues from the New York Times to lamebook. com, but well-thought-out and informed considerations of the topic are rare. Ilana Gershon was intrigued by the degree to which her students used new media to communicate important romantic information-such as "it's over. " She decided to get to the bottom of the matter by interviewing seventy-two people about how they use Skype, texting, voice mail, instant messaging, Facebook, and cream stationery to end relationships. She opens up the world of romance as it is conducted in a digital milieu, offering insights into the ways in which different media influence behavior, beliefs, and social mores. Above all, this full-fledged ethnography of Facebook and other new tools is about technology and communication, but it also tells the reader a great deal about what college students expect from each other when breaking up-and from their friends who are the spectators or witnesses to the ebb and flow of their relationships. The Breakup 2. 0 is accessible and riveting.
In the horrific events of the mid-1990s in Rwanda, tens of thousands of Hutu killed their Tutsi friends, neighbors, even family members. That ghastly violence has overshadowed a fact almost as noteworthy: that hundreds of thousands of Hutu killed no one. In a transformative revisiting of the motives behind and specific contexts surrounding the Rwandan genocide, Lee Ann Fujii focuses on individual actions rather than sweeping categories. Fujii argues that ethnic hatred and fear do not satisfactorily explain the mobilization of Rwandans one against another. Extensive interviews in Rwandan prisons and two rural communities from the basics for her claim that mass participation in the genocide was not the result of ethnic antagonisms. Rather, the social context of action was critical. Book jacket.
Site of the world's busiest and most lucrative harbor throughout the first half of the twentieth century, the Port of New York was also the historic preserve of Irish American gangsters, politicians, longshoremen's union leaders, and powerful Roman Catholic pastors. This is the demimonde depicted to stunning effect in Elia Kazan's On the Waterfront (1954) and into which James T. Fisher takes readers in this remarkable and engaging historical account of the classic film's backstory. Fisher introduces readers to the real Father Pete Barry featured in On the Waterfront, John M. Pete Corridan, a crusading priest committed to winning union democracy and social justice for the port's dockworkers and their families. A Jesuit labor school instructor, not a parish priest, Corridan was on but not of Manhattan's West Side Irish waterfront. His ferocious advocacy was resisted by the very men he sought to rescue from the violence and criminality that rendered the port a jungle, an outlaw frontier, in the words of investigative reporter Malcolm Johnson. Driven off the waterfront, Corridan forged creative and spiritual alliances with men like Johnson and Budd Schulberg, the screenwriter who worked with Corridan for five years to turn Johnson's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1948 newspaper exposé into a movie. Fisher's detailed account of the waterfront priest's central role in the film's creation challenges standard views of the film as a post facto justification for Kazan and Schulberg's testimony as ex-communists before the House Committee on Un-American Activities. On the Irish Waterfront is also a detailed social history of the New York/New Jersey waterfront, from the rise of Irish American entrepreneurs and political bosses during the World War I era to the mid-1950s, when the emergence of a revolutionary new mode of cargo-shipping signaled a radical reorganization of the port. This book explores the conflicts experienced and accommodations made by an insular Irish-Catholic community forced to adapt its economic, political, and religious lives to powerful forces of change both local and global in scope.
Among the most beloved saints in the Catholic tradition, Francis of Assisi (c. 1181-1226) is popularly remembered for his dedication to poverty, his love of animals and nature, and his desire to follow perfectly the teachings and example of Christ. During his lifetime and after his death, followers collected, for their own purposes, numerous stories, anecdotes, and reports about Francis. As a result, the man himself and his own concerns became lost in legend. In this authoritative and engaging new biography, Augustine Thompson, O. P. , sifts through the surviving evidence for the life of Francis using modern historical methods. The result is a complex yet sympathetic portrait of the man and the saint. Francis emerges from this account as very much a typical thirteenth-century Italian layman, but one who, when faced with unexpected crises in his personal life, made decisions so radical that they challenge his own society-and ours. Unlike the saint of legend, this Francis never had a unique divine inspiration to provide him with rules for following the teachings of Jesus. Rather, he spent his life reacting to unexpected challenges, before which he often found himself unprepared and uncertain. The Francis who emerges here is both more complex and more conflicted than that of older biographies. His famed devotion to poverty is found to be more nuanced than expected, perhaps not even his principal spiritual concern. Thompson revisits events small and large in Francis's life, including his troubled relations with his father, his contacts with Clare of Assisi, his encounter with the Muslim sultan, and his receiving the Stigmata, to uncover the man behind the legends and popular images. A tour de force of historical research and biographical writing, Francis of Assisi: A New Biography is divided into two complementary parts-a stand alone biographical narrative and a close, annotated examination of the historical sources about Francis. Taken together, the narrative and the survey of the sources provide a much-needed fresh perspective on this iconic figure. "As I have worked on this biography," Thompson writes, "my respect for Francis and his vision has increased, and I hope that this book will speak to modern people, believers and unbelievers alike, and that the Francis I have come to know will have something to say to them today. "
The shift from manufacturing- to service-based economies has often been accompanied by the expansion of low-wage and insecure employment. Many consider the effects of this shift inevitable. In Disintegrating Democracy at Work, Virginia Doellgast contends that high pay and good working conditions are possible even for marginal service jobs. This outcome, however, depends on strong unions and encompassing collective bargaining institutions, which are necessary to give workers a voice in the decisions that affect the design of their jobs and the distribution of productivity gains. Doellgast's conclusions are based on a comparative study of the changes that occurred in the organization of call center jobs in the United States and Germany following the liberalization of telecommunications markets. Based on survey data and interviews with workers, managers, and union representatives, she found that German managers more often took the "high road" than those in the United States, investing in skills and giving employees more control over their work. Doellgast traces the difference to stronger institutional supports for workplace democracy in Germany. However, these democratic structures were increasingly precarious, as managers in both countries used outsourcing strategies to move jobs to workplaces with lower pay and weaker or no union representation. Doellgast's comparative findings show the importance of policy choices in closing off these escape routes, promoting broad access to good jobs in expanding service industries.
A Newbery Honor award winner book for the year 1937, Audubon is a biography of ornithologist and painter John James Audubon.
A classic study from the author of philosophy which is a must-read for any serious student of the aetiology of hatred.
This anthology presents 90 documents that focus on the nature, evolution and meaning of the principle myths that have made anti-Semitism such a lethal force in history: Jews as deicides, ritual murderers, agents of Satan, international conspirators, and conniving, unscrupulous Shylocks.
Proves that shareholder primacy has no basis in law or economics and does not deliver better bottom-line results Suggests better ways to think about shareholders and their relationship to corporations Written by one of America's most distinguished legal scholars Executives, investors, and the business press routinely chant the mantra that corporations are required to "maximize shareholder value." The results have been disastrous. "Shareholder primacy" thinking causes corporate managers to focus myopically on short-term earnings reports at the expense of long-term performance; discourages investment and innovation; harms employees, customers, and communities; and causes companies to indulge in reckless, sociopathic, and socially irresponsible behaviors. It's the kind of thinking that led directly to the recent worldwide economic collapse. Jack Welch, once a shareholder primacy true believer, has famously called it "the dumbest idea in the world." Lynn Stout proves that there is in fact no legal obligation for corporations to maximize shareholder value--scholars, lawyers, and corporate officers just assumed there was. Nor, she demonstrates, is maximizing shareholder value the optimal economic model--that's just another unproven assumption, one that is conceptually muddled and, Stout shows, unsupported by the actual evidence on what drives good corporate performance. As if this wasn't enough, Stout also shows how shareholder primacy actually hurts individual investors by obscuring their real, diverse, human interests in the name of serving a hypothetical, homogeneous, abstract, and conscienceless shareholder. Stout looks at new theories that better serve the needs not only of actual human beings who invest but of corporations and society as well. "Calm, careful, plainspoken, and relentless argumentation that peels away the distracting layers of abstract mumbo jumbo to expose the lunacy of the underlying theory for all to see. Lynn Stout does the world a great favor in exposing shareholder value theory for what it is: flawed and damaging." --Roger Martin, Dean, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, and author of Fixing the Game
In desperation, Sarah sends Rotten Ralph to feline finishing school. Will Ralph's mischief finally be a thing of the past? This package comes with a paperback and a two-sided cassette tape. The professionally narrated audio production includes lively sound effects and original music. Side one includes page-turn signals; side two features an uninterrupted reading.
Believe it or not, Rotten Ralph turns 25 this spring. During that quarter century, he has entertained many young children with his shenanigans, which are more often than not rather naughty. Young readers and listeners will delight in helping Ralph celebrate his birthday in this all-new recording of Happy Birthday, Rotten Ralph, read by author Jack Gantos, who brings Ralph to life with this lively reading. This resealable package comes with a paperback and a two-sided cassette tape. The audio production includes lively sound effects and original music. Side one includes page-turn signals; side two features an uninterrupted reading.
Sarah wakes Ralph up with a great big kiss. "Happy Valentine's Day!" she says. Rotten Ralph hides under his pillow. Sarah is very excited to take Ralph to Petunia's Valentine's Day Party. But Ralph will do almost anything to avoid the party and drippy Valentine kisses!
Rotten Ralph is not at all nice to the Christmas visitor.
Farah feels alone, even when surrounded by her classmates. She listens and nods but doesn't speak. It's hard being the new kid in school, especially when you're from another country and don't know the language. Then, on a field trip to an apple orchard, Farah discovers there are lots of things that sound the same as they did at home, from dogs crunching their food to the ripple of friendly laughter. As she helps the class make apple cider, Farah connects with the other students and begins to feel that she belongs.Ted Lewin's gorgeous sun-drenched paintings and Eve Bunting's sensitive text immediately put the reader into another child's shoes in this timely story of a young Muslim immigrant.
In this redesigned edition of Scott O'Dell's classic novel, a young Native American woman, accompanied by her infant and her cruel husband, experiences joy and heartbreak when she joins the Lewis and Clark expedition seeking a way to the Pacific.
The gradual disappearance of paper and its familiar evidential qualities affects almost every dimension of contemporary life. From health records to ballots, almost all documents are now digitized at some point of their life cycle, easily copied, altered, and distributed. In Burdens of Proof, Jean-François Blanchette examines the challenge of defining a new evidentiary framework for electronic documents, focusing on the design of a digital equivalent to handwritten signatures. From the blackboards of mathematicians to the halls of legislative assemblies, Blanchette traces the path of such an equivalent: digital signatures based on the mathematics of public-key cryptography. In the mid-1990s, cryptographic signatures formed the centerpiece of a worldwide wave of legal reform and of an ambitious cryptographic research agenda that sought to build privacy, anonymity, and accountability into the very infrastructure of the Internet. Yet markets for cryptographic products collapsed in the aftermath of the dot-com boom and bust along with cryptography's social projects. Blanchette describes the trials of French bureaucracies as they wrestled with the application of electronic signatures to real estate contracts, birth certificates, and land titles, and tracks the convoluted paths through which electronic documents acquire moral authority. These paths suggest that the material world need not merely succumb to the virtual but, rather, can usefully inspire it. Indeed, Blanchette argues, in renewing their engagement with the material world, cryptographers might also find the key to broader acceptance of their design goals.
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