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Non-Fiction (1900-1945) > December 2017 - Non-fiction Polls

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message 1: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb Nominate a work of non-fiction for the group to read in December 2017.

It should have been written in, or set in, the period 1900 to 1945.

If Ally or Jennifer are still not around I will post a poll on 1O Oct 2017


message 2: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Does it matter if it has been read by the group in the past?


message 3: by Jan C (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 1525 comments I think we decided that you can nominate books that were read years ago as there are new members who were not around at the time. I recall we were discussing this last month when I suggested a book by Elizabeth Bowen which we apparently read in 2013. I had no recollection of it.


message 4: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Thanks Jan! It makes sense that the books "rotate" over time.


message 5: by Haaze (last edited Oct 03, 2017 11:56PM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments I would like to nominate Rites of Spring: The Great War and the Birth of the Modern Age by Modris Eksteins.

"A rare and remarkable cultural history of World War I that unearths the roots of modernism.

Dazzling in its originality, Rites of Spring probes the origins, impact, and aftermath of World War I, from the premiere of Stravinsky's ballet The Rite of Spring in 1913 to the death of Hitler in 1945. Recognizing that "The Great War was the psychological turning point . . . for modernism as a whole", author Modris Eksteins examines the lives of ordinary people, works of modern literature, and pivotal historical events to redefine the way we look at our past and toward our future."





message 6: by Haaze (last edited Oct 03, 2017 10:57PM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Susan wrote: "Nigeyb, thanks for setting up the polls. Again, I would like to nominate a book for the vote and one for a possible future buddy read.

Nominate: The Hotel Years: Wanderings in Europe betwee..."


Lovely suggestion, Susan! The Hotel Years: Wanderings in Europe between the Wars sound alluring in every way!!!!


message 7: by Haaze (last edited Oct 03, 2017 11:57PM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Hmm, one book I have had my eyes on for a looong time is Rebecca West's Black Lamb and Grey Falcon (published in 1941). It could also be a fun choice for a longer buddy read. :)

"“Rebecca West’s magnum opus . . . one of the great books of our time.” —The New Yorker

Written on the brink of World War II, Rebecca West’s classic examination of the history, people, and politics of Yugoslavia illuminates a region that is still a focus of international concern. A magnificent blend of travel journal, cultural commentary, and historical insight, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon probes the troubled history of the Balkans and the uneasy relationships among its ethnic groups. The landscape and the people of Yugoslavia are brilliantly observed as West untangles the tensions that rule the country’s history as well as its daily life."





message 8: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb Haaze wrote: "Hmm, one book I have had my eyes on for a looong time is Rebecca West's Black Lamb and Grey Falcon (published in 1941)"

A while back I read Rebecca West: A Modern Sibyl by Carl Rollyson, and even set it up as a Hot Read...

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

I came away quite keen to read Rebecca West's Black Lamb and Grey Falcon

Coincidentally (and as you know Haaze) I am currently reading 'Freya' (part of a loose trilogy along with ‘Curtain Call’ and 'Eureka') and in part thanks to Susan (and another GR friend called Mark) and it contains a character clearly based on Rebecca West called Jessica Vaux, right down to the affair with the successful novelist resulting in a son.

I must also mention I keep meaning to retire from BYT, or at least take a sabbatical, so I can catch up on a pile of books not from the first half of the 20th century but, a bit like Michael Corrleone in Godfather 3, every time I try to leave I get sucked back in. Last time Susan enticed me back with the news that Ally was back.


message 9: by Susan (new)

Susan | 774 comments I know it can be difficult to keep up with groups, but I do love the book choices in this one. Even though it, sadly, isn't as active as it could be...


message 10: by Greg (new)

Greg | 330 comments In 'Merchant Soldier Sage: A New History of Power' by David Priestland, which I've started reading, mentions Rebecca West's 'Black Lamb and Grey Falcon', and quotes from the book, which has prompted me to want to investigate it. Priestland writes 'The English writer Rebecca West was struck by the importance of hunting to the aristocrats she met in interwar Yugoslavia. As she rememembered: "The old Hungarian count . . . was heard to mutter as he lay dying, "And then the Lord will say 'Count, what have you done with your life?,' and I shall have to say, 'Lord, I have shot a great many animals,' Oh dear!Oh dear! It doesn't seem enough!"


message 11: by Haaze (last edited Oct 04, 2017 04:53AM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Nigeyb wrote: "I must also mention I keep meaning to retire from BYT, or at least take a sabbatical, so I can catch up on a pile of books not from the first half of the 20th century but, a bit like Michael Corrleone in Godfather 3, every time I try to leave I get sucked back in. Last time Susan enticed me back with the news that Ally was back."

Ahh, please don't retire, Nigeyb. That is likely to be the end of BYT. I spotted BYT's current choice of Maugham and Vera Brittain so I came back to check things out. Oddly I found that your name was missing from the group's roster!! Then suddenly there you were again as a new member and posting away. It was a bit strange...

Happily I found the group surprisingly positive, embracing, active and interesting. Your posts, Nigey, are always inspiring and thoughtful. And, Susan's are equally thoughtful and lovely to read. Based on yours and Susan's current posting activity I very much sense a potential revival of the group. I really like your current choices as well as the ideas being put forward for December. And all of your posts!!!! :)


message 12: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments I presume that we are restricted to one nomination per member? :O


message 13: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb Thanks Haaze, you're very kind. I will try to steer a course that manages to achieve a slight stepping back with ongoing active participation.

In terms of nominations per member, I don't know. I don't ever recall anyone having nominated more than one book per category per month but I don't see why not. When either Ally or Jennifer re-emerge we can get a definitive response. Do you want to nominate two books this month?


message 14: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Hmm, perhaps...? Two choices....
What are you nominating?


message 15: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Btw I fixed up the currently reading section on the front page. I hope nobody minds..?


message 16: by Nigeyb (last edited Oct 04, 2017 05:04AM) (new)

Nigeyb Haaze wrote: "What are you nominating?"


I'm not nominating Haaze. My choices rarely seem to find favour. It's been 13 months since I had a successful nomination, and that was in turn the first successful nomination I'd had for about a year before that. That said, I turned a few failed nominations into reasonably successful Hot Reads, so I've concluded I'll just jump straight to starting a Hot Read if I feel inspired to highlight a book I think others might enjoy.

I should add, in case that sounds a bit "woe is me", that I really don't mind. I enjoy researching those books others have nominated and thinking about which I'd most like to read.


message 17: by Haaze (last edited Oct 04, 2017 05:03AM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Looking forward to your "Hot Reads" threads then.... ;-)


message 18: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments You guys need a banner....!


message 19: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Are there any general information or banter threads about off topics or general interest topics here at BYT?


message 20: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments This picture/ad from the 1920s made me laugh...




message 21: by Haaze (last edited Oct 04, 2017 05:11AM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Hmm, this would be a good one:

https://fthmb.tqn.com/eMFEgtmXiQQLb15...

But I am digressing....


message 22: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb Haaze wrote: "Are there any general information or banter threads about off topics or general interest topics here at BYT?"

Not yet Haaze but I'm sure you'd get takers if you set one up. Those photos are fab by the way.

The best place would appear to be a dedicated thread in the ChitChat section....

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/group...


message 23: by Susan (new)

Susan | 774 comments I quite often buy books that are nominated, but which don't win. For instance, I downloaded "The Past is Myself," which was nominated last month. If you want to do a hot reads of that in future, I would certainly join in. I have also suggested a couple of possible buddy reads, if anyone is interested.


message 24: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Susan wrote: "I quite often buy books that are nominated, but which don't win. For instance, I downloaded "The Past is Myself," which was nominated last month. If you want to do a hot reads of that in future, I ..."

The World Broke in Two sounds very interesting, Susan!


message 25: by Haaze (last edited Oct 04, 2017 05:59AM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Would a book like Peter Gay's Weimar Culture: The Outsider as Insider be of interest to the group?

"A seminal work as melodious and haunting as the era it chronicles.

First published in 1968, Weimar Culture is one of the masterworks of Peter Gay's distinguished career. A study of German culture between the two wars, the book brilliantly traces the rise of the artistic, literary, and musical culture that bloomed ever so briefly in the 1920s amid the chaos of Germany's tenuous post-World War I democracy, and crashed violently in the wake of Hitler's rise to power. Despite the ephemeral nature of the Weimar democracy, the influence of its culture was profound and far-reaching, ushering in a modern sensibility in the arts that dominated Western culture for most of the twentieth century. Vivid and eminently readable, Weimar Culture is the finest introduction for the casual reader and historian alike."




AND.....

Peter Gay also wrote this larger volume that have been peering at me from my TBR pile for a while:

Modernism: The Lure of Heresy: From Baudelaire to Beckett and Beyond

"“Rich, learned, briskly written, maddening yet necessary study.”―Lee Siegel, New York Times Book Review
Peter Gay explores the shocking modernist rebellion that, beginning in the 1840s, transformed art, literature, music, and film. Modernism presents a thrilling pageant of heretics that includes Oscar Wilde, Pablo Picasso, D. W. Griffiths, James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, Walter Gropius, Arnold Schoenberg, and (of course!) Andy Warhol."

"Putting a Freudian view of life as an arena of conflict at the center of a view of modernism, this outspoken study tracks the avant-garde across a wide array of high culture—literature, music and dance, painting and sculpture, architecture and film. Conventional Victorians, according to Gay, found the belief in art for art's sake of libertine and aesthete Oscar Wilde as much a perversion as his homosexuality. But even fans often get it wrong, says Gay, embracing Edvard Munch's most famous painting, The Scream, as the quintessential symbol of modern angst, while Munch meant his nightmarish vision as a confession of his own inner state. And thanks to generous patrons, the oeuvre of anti-artist Marcel Duchamp, an enemy of museums, is featured prominently at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Modernism isn't a single style, Gay shows: in literature, Ulysses's wordy, sensual world stands in direct opposition to Virginia Woolf's in Mrs. Dalloway, spare and cool. This latest from Gay (National Book Award winner for The Enlightenment) isn't a monumental or definitive treatise but a highly personal, arbitrary and invigorating collection of mini-essays that view a variety of artistic works from a fresh perspective. "

“It’s done so gracefully, and engagingly, that even as I raced to finish before our interview, I couldn’t make myself skim.”
- Katie Bolick, Boston Globe

“A masterful work of cultural history . . . and it’s truly a pleasure to read.”
- Mia Fineman, Slate

“A sweeping survey . . . offering shrewd analyses.”
- William Grimes, The New York Times

“Peter Gay is perhaps our leading historian of culture and ideas.”
- Tim Rutten, Los Angeles Times

“An ambitious survey . . . [by] a superior popularizer.”
- Michael Dirda, Washington Post





message 26: by Barbara (new)

Barbara Haaze wrote: "This picture/ad from the 1920s made me laugh...

"
And don't those ladies look mirthful?!


message 27: by Barbara (new)

Barbara Haaze, I'd be very interested in the Weimar book. It's been on my Kindle for over a year, awaiting its turn.


message 28: by Susan (new)

Susan | 774 comments Oh, I would like to read the Hermione Lee biography, RC. Hope you do manage to get hold of a copy of The World Broke in Two - let me know as and when.


message 29: by Roman Clodia (new)

Roman Clodia Excellent, Susan. The World is on order at the university library but hasn't made it to the shelves as yet - I'll let you know for sure.


message 30: by Haaze (last edited Oct 04, 2017 10:40AM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Barbara wrote: "Haaze, I'd be very interested in the Weimar book. It's been on my Kindle for over a year, awaiting its turn."

They tend to pile up, don't they....? :)


message 31: by Susan (new)

Susan | 774 comments RC, no rush at all. Can be in the New Year if anyone is interested.


message 32: by Jan C (last edited Oct 04, 2017 01:11PM) (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 1525 comments I'm interested in The World Broke in Two. Also in Weimar Culture.


message 33: by Jan C (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 1525 comments New World Coming: The 1920s And The Making Of Modern America by Nathan Miller.

"The images of the 1920s have been indelibly imprinted on the American imagination-from jazz, bootleggers, flappers, talkies, the Model T Ford, Babe Ruth, and Charles Lindbergh to the fight for women's right to vote, racial injustice, and the birth of organized crime. Nathan Miller has penned the ultimate introduction to the era. Publishers Weekly calls it "an excellent chronicle of that turbulent, troubled, and tempestuous decade," and Jonathan Yardley's Washington Post review proclaimed this the new classic history of the 1920s, replacing Frederick Lewis Allen's celebrated account. Using the life of F. Scott Fitzgerald as a backdrop, Miller describes the world of Calvin Coolidge, H. L. Mencken, Woodrow Wilson, and the Red Scare in extraordinarily accessible (and frequently witty) writing, New World Coming is destined to become the book we all turn to recall one of the most beloved eras in American history."


message 34: by Bronwyn (new)

Bronwyn (nzfriend) | 651 comments Oh I've been meaning to read New World Coming. I could probably swing it by December. :)


message 35: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb Any more nominations? I'll get a poll up on Monday so that gives everyone the rest of the weekend to add any more final nominations.

Here's hoping our BYT moderators return soon.


message 36: by Nigeyb (new)

Nigeyb Nigeyb wrote: "Any more nominations? I'll get a poll up on Monday so that gives everyone the rest of the weekend to add any more final nominations.

Here's hoping our BYT moderators return soon."


Nominations so far (note some earlier ones have now been withdrawn)...

Haaze: Rites of Spring: The Great War and the Birth of the Modern Age by Modris Eksteins

Jan: New World Coming: The 1920s And The Making Of Modern America by Nathan Miller

I'll get a poll up on Monday so that gives everyone the rest of the weekend to add any more final nominations


message 37: by Jan C (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 1525 comments oh, come on. We need more than two nominations!


message 38: by Haaze (last edited Oct 07, 2017 12:10PM) (new)

Haaze | 140 comments To increase our selection I nominate Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell.



"A National Review Top Ten Best Nonfiction Books of the Century

“One of Orwell’s very best books and perhaps the best book that exists on the Spanish Civil War.”—The New Yorker

In 1936, originally intending merely to report on the Spanish Civil War as a journalist, George Orwell found himself embroiled as a participant—as a member of the Workers’ Party of Marxist Unity. Fighting against the Fascists, he described in painfully vivid and occasionally comic detail life in the trenches—with a “democratic army” composed of men with no ranks, no titles, and often no weapons—and his near fatal wounding. As the politics became tangled, Orwell was pulled into a heartbreaking conflict between his own personal ideals and the complicated realities of political power struggles.

Considered one of the finest works by a man V. S. Pritchett called “the wintry conscience of a generation,” Homage to Catalonia is both Orwell’s memoir of his experiences at the front and his tribute to those who died in what he called a fight for common decency. This edition features a new foreword by Adam Hochschild placing the war in greater context and discussing the evolution of Orwell’s views on the Spanish Civil War.

“No one except George Orwell . . . made the violence and self-dramatization of Spain so burning and terrible.”— Alfred Kazin, New York Times

“A wise book, one that once read will never be forgotten.”—Chicago Sunday Tribune



message 39: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Exciting!


message 40: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Too close to call...


message 41: by Nigeyb (last edited Nov 03, 2017 05:51AM) (new)

Nigeyb We have a winner for December 2017....


Haaze wrote: "Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell"


message 42: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 140 comments Definitely! :)


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