NOW COMPLETED AND EDITED: America is in turmoil. Many patriotic politicians warn of the danger of new floods of immigrants whose religious history isNOW COMPLETED AND EDITED: America is in turmoil. Many patriotic politicians warn of the danger of new floods of immigrants whose religious history is steeped in violence and forced conversion. These immigrants can never truly be American, for their beliefs bind them to foreign influences inimical to democracy. They are at best pawns of darker forces that would destroy us and our way of life.
Islamic immigrants in 2015?
No. Catholic immigrants in 1840.
This book is long out-of-print, and has many flaws, but the parallels to today's situation (AND YES, I KNOW THEY ARE NOT EXACT) are all the more striking because I know Beals could not have been influenced by them when writing this book more than 50 years ago. (Because the book was published in 1960, Beals MAY have been responding to the possibility of a Catholic president in JFK, but he doesn't directly allude to it at all.)
I picked this up for background information in regards to another topic I'm studying. I had no idea there would be so many places where the rhetoric of today and the that of 180 years ago were so closely matched. And the irony that some of the worst contemporary demagogues would have been targets then is not lost on me. I fear it would be lost on them.
If you can get access to a copy of this book (and you can, from the same place I did, which is to say, through Interlibrary Loan), give it a look and see what YOU think.
Above I mentioned flaws without being specific: let me say a little more now that I have finished. Beals is (as you might expect from someone writing at this time) casually and unexadminedly (the spell check says that isn't a word, but I'm still going with it) sexist and racist; interestingly, he also seems to be somewhat passively anti-Catholic. He assumes that the Know-Nothings were in fact correct about the anti-democratic tendencies of the Church, and has few kind words to say about the bishops who were prominent in these struggles. So be ready for that. ...more
If you've been living part of your life on the Web from its toddler days in the 1990s, you probably know most of the stories assembled here: How BertIf you've been living part of your life on the Web from its toddler days in the 1990s, you probably know most of the stories assembled here: How Bert moved from Sesame Street to become an ally of Osama Bin Laden; people who create avatars with illnesses and dramatic stories and solicit funds for their support; hoax web sites and conspiracies.
What makes this book immensely valuable is how Seife puts all of this together to create a larger, integrated story of how the information explosion is making us more solipsistic, more gullible, and more vulnerable to acting against our own best interests.
This is a thick book, but a substantial portion is references, bibliography, and index. Seife, a journalism professor, has meticulously provided documentation throughout -- no easy matter in a world of evanescent flickers.
I strongly recommend this book for all of us, but especially those of us who, for health reasons, or other forms of isolation, have a substantial time and emotional investment in the virtual worlds. This would also make an excellent text, in whole or in part, for an information literacy class or program. ...more
I enjoyed this, and found it intriguing, but also frustrating.
Where I work, the basis of our work used to be routine work that more or less literallyI enjoyed this, and found it intriguing, but also frustrating.
Where I work, the basis of our work used to be routine work that more or less literally came in the mail. It had definite ebbs and flows, but it was fairly steady and predictable. Now, that traditional stream of work is drying up, and more of our work is focused around projects, driven by this grant or that, this inquiry by a donor, that passion of a dean.
I think Scrum MIGHT be helpful in giving our staff a way to manage these sudden and finite projects. The challenge, I think, would be creating these teams in an institution so in love with hierarchy and process. The staff I know best seem really to crave being given very explicit direction, and Scrum expects team members to be highly self-directing.
There are two entwined stories here; one of the Victory Book Campaign (VBC), a nationwide book donation drive for the Army and the Navy sponsored by tThere are two entwined stories here; one of the Victory Book Campaign (VBC), a nationwide book donation drive for the Army and the Navy sponsored by the American Library Association; and one of the history of the Armed Services Editions, or ASEs.
Anyone who has sorted donated books (and many of us who have donated books, let's be honest) will guess what happened with the VBC. Large numbers of the books were too old, too worn, or otherwise unsuitable. While the books that could not be sent to troops could be donated to scrap paper drives, overall, the VBC fell short of expectations.
There was another, practical reason the VBC failed: books, at that time, mostly meant hardcover volumes. However, with weight and space being so important for troop safety and speed, books, beloved as they were, could become a hindrance.
Enter the ASEs. Engineered in two specific sizes to fit uniform pockets, made with light but sturdy paper, ASEs were unique to the US armed forces, and played a significant role in morale during the "hurry up and wait" of the war.
The letters of thanks that Manning quotes will get you a bit misty, and you'll be sometimes surprised (A Tree Grows in Brooklyn?) and sometimes less so (Forever Amber) about which titles were popular with the men. Although I hadn't heard of many of the titles published as ASEs, there are definitely some that I'll be trying to find in their conventional editions.
Librarians may be a little surprised to read about this (ahem) chapter in ALA history; it's certainly not one that is emphasized much today. Which is not to say that ALA and libraries in general can't go hand-in-glove with government as they have with "Obamacare Navigators," tax forms, and voter registration drives. But we're much more fond of the resistance to authority image than that of patriotic collaborator. ...more
Go get this and read this. I don't care WHO you are.
I really didn't mean to read this book in one sitting, but I did, give or take a few pages.
RobisGo get this and read this. I don't care WHO you are.
I really didn't mean to read this book in one sitting, but I did, give or take a few pages.
Robison lays out, in clear and simple prose, what his life has been like, and especially how the traits and tendencies he has due to Asperger's Syndrome have shaped his life. Most especially, he shares how those traits have led to his success, rather than simply sharing the problems he has needed to overcome to be more like everybody else. This is something we don't see enough of in any kind of disability literature. (And yes, I know that Robison would take issue with being lumped in among people with disabilities, but, please, sir, it just means I want you for "my team," as it were.)
His repeated message is that the older one gets, the easier it is to lean into and build on one's strengths. For children who are struggling now, and for their parents, this is a hopeful word.
There is a nice appendix with suggestions for further reading, as well as an index that links clinical diagnostic criteria for autism to Robison's accounts of dealing with/benefiting from each. ...more
I'm fascinated by the negative and lukewarm reviews here that describe this book as "just common sense" and "the same as all the other time managementI'm fascinated by the negative and lukewarm reviews here that describe this book as "just common sense" and "the same as all the other time management books." While they are right to a certain extent, "common sense is not so common," to be sure. And what I like about this framing of the same basic principles is that his way of explaining them sticks with me.
What this book spells out more explicitly than others seem to is that there are many things we can't delegate or put off indefinitely, that are NOT part of my life goals except in the sense that they preserve access to food and shelter, **but they are still important to do**. Time management books that tell me to have my children or my executive assistant take care of these things, or hire someone else to do them, annoy me.
McClatchy understands that repetitive tasks like errands and laundry can eat up the whole day (and, if one is not careful, they will). He explains the psychology of scheduled vs. unscheduled tasks, and gives tips on how to reserve time and complete activities that will bring growth and accomplishment (Gain) beyond the relief of dodging bullets (Prevent Pain).
As with any self-help book, I now have that honeymoon feeling that This One Will Make a Difference. Only time will tell -- but this time, the actions the author recommends seem possible for the person I am today, not the person I will someday become. We'll see. ...more
Mild disclaimer: I am also a member of the ALA Learning Round Table, as are the authors. I'm pretty sure I've at least said howdy to them, but given mMild disclaimer: I am also a member of the ALA Learning Round Table, as are the authors. I'm pretty sure I've at least said howdy to them, but given my face/name deficits, I can't really say. This is an unsolicited review of my library's print edition.
My only "gripe" with this book so far is a very good-natured one. Every few pages I have to stop and jot down notes about a web site I want to visit or a book I should read later. ...more