Who would have thought, in the "modern" world in which most of us live & work, a world founded on a secular view of events, on historicism rather than religious fanaticism, on science rather than religious dogma, that the opposition to these views could get their hands on the wheel of state, or of its key method of outreach to Generations X, Y & Z. Who would have thought? But of course, this is going on all around us. Not just in other countries but in our own. Not just among the leaders of our nation-state (e.g., Tom DeLay flailing for continued exercise of naked & corrupt political power at prayer breakfasts in Washington).
An interesting place to see all this in microcosm are these Kansas hearings on what students should be taught about science in general & about evolution in particular. To hear the "other side," since the real scientists have (quite correctly) decided to boycott the event (statements from members of the board itself make clear how biased the event is in the first place). You have pseudo-scientists who are all, without exception, born-again christians, proclaiming that their own faith ought to be taught in kansas elementary & secondary schools. You have scientists proclaiming the same, of course, scientists from disciplines completely outside the relevant areas & in some cases scientists with embarassingly dubious degrees in the first place. But their views make for very interesting listening, as do the self-serving comments made by the board members themselves. This is worth a listen. It is very stimulating even if it brings the blood to a boil on occasion. I am not sure I will be able to retain my interest to Days 2 & 3, which have just been posted, but certainly Day 1 is worth listening to.
The narrative is a personal one. Goodale essentially testifies to his own role, very personally (lots of "I's", which took a bit of getting used to), which is what drives the story and makes it exciting. Due to the approach, the reader gets a mixture of personal, political, and legal history, along with a grounding in real drama (not TV drama) that can take place in legal cases. Readers will come away with a good understanding of the importance of the Pentagon Papers, the Pentagon Paper case, and the first amendment to the US constitution. And can go elsewhere if a deeper understanding is desired on any of these aspects of the case.
Austen with an outstanding narrator
Alison Larkin is a terrific narrator, she speaks with verve and drive, and she does a great job moving from one voice to another, and from narration to a character's voice, so that the book can be easily followed without thinking about which character is speaking.
Pride & Prejudice should, of course, be read by everyone. It is a great story, one that could occur today, in some sense, with some of the environs shifted. But you can also live it as a reader of a circa-1790s aristocracy story, listen to the narrative & with a bit of imagination, stretch yourself into a horse & buggy context of England in the period.
It is written novelistically, but with plenty of reference material interspersed with the story to lend credence to the arguments. Very thought-provoking. I am sure there are other interpretations besides this one, but the author makes his interpretation(s) quite convincing.
Yes, this would have been a book I could have listened to in one sitting. However, it is so packed with ideas, it does merit stopping once in awhile to let the ideas sink in.
The lecture series provided a great overview, for the non-expert, of the most current issues in information- & cyber-security, in a highly intelligible & engaging manner. Even if you are moderately literate on this subject, from trade press reading & from the security policies of your corporate home, you will learn a lot from this series.
Well, this is not a book, just a lecture series. I understand that the author has written some books on the same topic & I plan to look them up and get one if it doesn't look too technical.
A beautifully written & narrated audiobook that provides the intellectual basis for the concept of free speech in the United States while, at the same time, weaving in the times (WWI in particular), the life & times of Oliver Wendell Holmes, and the legal setting of the free speech cases and the Supreme Court itself. I was rivetted throughout and sorry when it was over. I have already purchased the book for a couple of my non-audiobook family members.
Antonia Fraser, one of the great historians & biographers on the British scene. I have read a number of her books before but this may be the first one I've listened to. The book is very well written and narrated.
It is a slice of history book, centered around the reform crisis of the 1830s. A mix of political history, constitutional (British) history, and straight old narrative history of the time. Fraser effectively portrays what was going on, focusing on the main personalities involved in the story and providing good biographies to those personalities. I felt as if I was in the time, a good indicator of the strength of this history. Although I knew vaguely about the reform crisis already, this gave my college-recollections a great refresher. I also think that people interested in American constitutional history and in the evolution of voting rights in the US would benefit from this book. You do not just have to be interested in British history to find it useful in understanding US history and even the debates about voting rights (i.e., in the Supreme Court) of today.
Philip Daileader is one of my favorite Teaching Company lecturers. I have listened to his 3 middle ages from TC directly and I just finished this Crusades piece. Terrific. A great way to learn history from one of the great professors on the subject. I recommend all 4 series. All 4 are available on Audible now.
This book is well written and very well narrated. It successfully weaves together a history of the Victorian era, a sort of joint biography of Victoria and Albert, the story of the evolution of policing, and a number of CSI-like crime stories. I was afraid all that would be too much to get in a not-so-very long book, but it was not the case. I enjoyed each episode (which is clustered around one of the six or seven assassination attempts) as a stand-alone and the weaving of all of them together to make an entertaining history.
The reading my David Sedaris himself gave an extra oomph to an already very entertainining and thought-provoking set of essays.
I liked the mixture of the absolutely hilarious stories with the more serious ones.
This is another terrific history book from Lynne Olson. Even though I knew the general outlines of the period, 1936 to 1941, I certainly did not know all of the players, all of the factions, machinations, FDR's political jockeying and poll-watching, Lindbergh and his long suffering wife (and mother in law). Olson makes great use of all kinds of evidence, speeches, letters, newspapers, newsreels, movies and diplomatic dispatches to knit together the time in such a way that you feel as if you were there. The narrator is also very good.
Report Inappropriate Content