A Man Without a Country is Kurt Vonneguts hilariously funny and razorsharp look at life ("If I dieGod forbidI would like to go to heaven to ask somebody in charge up there, Hey, what was the good news and what was the bad news?"), art ("To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it."), politics ("I asked former Yankees pitcher Jim Bouton what he thought of our great victory over Iraq and he said, Mohammed Ali versus Mr. Rogers."), and the condition of the soul of America today ("What has happened to us?").
Based on short essays and speeches composed over the last five years and plentifully illustrated with artwork by the author throughout, A Man Without a Country gives us Vonnegut both speaking out with indignation and writing tenderly to his fellow Americans, sometimes joking, at other times hopeless, always searching.
Conceived the night of Che Guevara';s burial in 1967, Gabriel McKenzie is inextricably bound up in the history and politics of his native Chile. Twenty-four years on, and still a virgin, Gabriel returns from Manhattan exile to confront his legacy: a Don Juan father and a country preparing for the five-hundredth anniversary of America';s "discovery." Into Gabriel';s quest for manhood and identity enter one iceberg, a faithful if eccentric nanny, and a whole host of fantastical characters.
In this groundbreaking pamphlet, based on testimony he delivered before Congress, Ralph Nader describes how corporations are picking our pockets, and what we can do to stop them.
While the United States continues to experience unprecedented cuts in social service programs and millions of Americans go without health insurance, massive corporations continue to reap huge sums of taxpayer money through "corporate welfare"--corporate subsidies, bailouts, giveaways, and tax escapes. Cutting Corporate Welfare details numerous appalling examples of corporate welfare, including: the giveaway of the public airwaves, which by definition belong to the people, to private radio and television stations (including the latest $70 billion gift of the digital spectrum); taxpayer subsidies for giant defense corporation mergers and commercial weapons exports to governments overseas; and the practice of making patients pay twice for drugs--first, as taxpayers subsidize the drugs'; development, and again, as patients, after the federal government gives monopolistic control over the chemical';s manufacture to a price-gouging drug company.
Cutting Corporate Welfare sounds a wake-up call for those concerned about how we are being pick-pocketed by big business, and what we can do to stop it.
Today's "extreme weather events" (record-breaking heat waves, droughts, and melting ice caps) foreshadow an increasingly unstable and dire future. Yet, despite all, the US government continues to reject the Kyoto Protocol, to deny the catastrophic consequences of oil dependency, and to define the politics of oil as the politics of U.S. unilateralism, domination, and war.
Dead Heat argues that justice--not rhetoric and "aid" but real developmental justice for the people of developing world--is going to be necessary, and surprisingly soon. It argues, more particularly, that such a justice must involve a phased transition from the Kyoto Protocol to a new climate treaty based on equal human rights to emit greenhouse pollutants. Dead Heat makes the case for climate justice, but insists that justice and equity, for all their manifold ethical and humanitarian attractions, must also be seen as the most "realistic" of virtues. It insists, in other words, that our limited environmental space will itself show that it is the dream of a "business as usual" future that is naïve and utopian.
In 1987, the death of Ben Linder, the first American killed by President Reagan's "freedom fighters" -- the U.S.-backed Nicaraguan Contras -- ignited a firestorm of protest and debate. In this landmark first biography of Linder, investigative journalist Joan Kruckewitt tells his story.
In the summer of 1983, a 23-year-old American named Ben Linder arrived in Managua with a unicycle and a newly earned degree in engineering. In 1986, Linder moved from Managua to El Cuá, a village in the Nicaraguan war zone, where he helped form a team to build a hydroplant to bring electricity to the town. He was ambushed and killed by the Contras the following year while surveying a stream for a possible hydroplant.
/> In 1993, Kruckewitt traveled to the Nicaraguan mountains to investigate Linder's death. In July 1995. she finally located and interviewed one of the men who killed Ben Linder, a story that became the basis for a New Yorker feature on Linder's death. Linder's story is a portrait of one idealist who died for his beliefs, as well as a picture of a failed foreign policy, vividly exposing the true dimensions of a war that forever marked the lives of both Nicaraguans and Americans.
Welcome to San Francisco: the first fully gentrified city in America.
May Jones is a bail bondswoman, someone who makes her living by putting people back onto the streets. Her most recent client, a young black woman, is on trial for the murder of her boyfriend, a police informant in the Fillmore District, also known as the "Harlem of the West," the neighborhood that the powers-that-be of San Francisco would like more than anything to see disappear. May becomes a target of the police, and of her own shadowed past among the people of Fillmore--strippers, alcoholic policemen, psychic gunshot victims, fugitives--as she walks the narrowest tightrope on the West Coast: the line of personal conscience that separates justice from authority.
/> By turns lyrical, incisive, hilarious, and bittersweet, Peter Plate's Elegy Written On A Crowded Street explores the human cost of the twenty-first century American city with a unique honesty, beauty, and moral power.
Renowned author Ariel Dorfman, obsessed for twenty-five years with the malignant shadow General Pinochet cast upon Chile and the world, followed every twist and turn of the four year old trial in Great Britain, Spain and Chile as well as in the U.S., the country that had created Pinochet. Told as a suspense thriller, filled with court-room drama and sudden reversals of fortune, the book at the same time addresses some of today's most burning issues, made all the more urgent after the terrorist attacks of September 11th 2001. What are the limits of national sovereignty in a globalizing world? How does an ever more interconnected world judge crimes committed against humanity? What role do memory and pain and the rights of the survivors play in this struggle for a new system of justice? But above all, the author, by listening carefully to the voices of Pinochet's many victims, explores how can we purge ourselves of terror and fear once we have been traumatized, and asks if we can build peace and reconciliation without facing a turbulent and perverse past.
From Slapstick's "Turkey Farm" to Slaughterhouse-Five's eternity in a Tralfamadorean zoo cage with Montana Wildhack, the question of the afterlife never left Kurt Vonnegut's mind. In God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian, Vonnegut skips back and forth between life and the Afterlife as if the difference between them were rather slight. In thirty odd "interviews," Vonnegut trips down "the blue tunnel to the pearly gates" in the guise of a roving reporter for public radio, conducting interviews: with Salvatore Biagini, a retired construction worker who died of a heart attack while rescuing his schnauzer from a pit bull, with John Brown, still smoldering 140 years after his death by hanging, with William Shakespeare, who rubs Vonnegut the wrong way, and with socialist and labor leader Eugene Victor Debs, one of Vonnegut's personal heroes.
What began as a series of ninety-second radio interludes for WNYC, New York City's public radio station, evolved into this provocative collection of musings about who and what we live for, and how much it all matters in the end. From the original portrait by his friend Jules Feiffer that graces the cover, to a final entry from Kilgore Trout, God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian remains a joy.
Fake House, the first collection of short stories by poet Linh Dinh, explores the weird, atrocious, fond, and ongoing intimacies between Vietnam and the United States.
Linked by a complicated past, the characters are driven by an intense and angry energy. The politics of race and sex anchor Dinh's work as his men and women negotiate their way in a post-Vietnam War world. Dinh has said of his own work, "I incorporate a filth or uncleanness to make the picture more healthy--not to defile anything." While Fake House delves into the lives of marginal souls in two cultures, the characters' dignity lies, ultimately, in how they face the conflict in themselves and the world.
A brilliant work of the imagination as well as a meditation on writing itself, the story follows a biographer';s investigation into the life and works of a famous, yet highly mysterious, deceased Greek author named Glafkos Thrassakis. At the crossroads where magical realism and political fiction meet, Vassilis Vassilikos';s buoyant literary imagination flourishes beyond the confines of conventional narrative structures.
Solotaroff was one of the notable intellectuals of his generation, the founder of the New American Review, editor and friend of Philip Roth, and editor-in-chief at HarperCollins. Solotaroff reveals himself here as a thinking man with a big heart and gaping wounds of love that are not disconnected from the contributions he has made to American culture throughout his career.
Solotaroff turns back to the earliest pages of his romance with Lynn, remembering his first sighting of her emerging from the water as if from a dream. Yet the image, as he penetrates the intervening layers of sorrow and disappointment, is almost impossibly distant, fragile. First Loves reenacts the blurring of a perfect conception in the mind of a man who would devote his life to precision of thought and word. This opposition, of romantic and intellectual passion, drives the narrative and eventually brings it to crisis.
First Loves could be described as a very private feat of honesty from a public intellectual. Solotaroff';s willingness to admit the failures, personal and professional, alongside the triumphs of his career gives a three-dimensional intensity to the emotions on the page. Working with all of the gritty and romantic elements of his storied life, Solotaroff manages to avoid a tone too heroic or honey-dipped; he manages simply to tell the tale.
One foggy day in San Francisco brings together bloody ghosts, a dandyish thug, capricious cops, a suicidal punk rocker, a hyperliterate slumlord, and a sweet old lady sent by God to hand out cash from a hijacked armored car. In Fogtown, Peter Plate uses a loving hand to carve his characters out of hallucination, perversity, and tenacity. Plate's noir sensibility gives him special fluency with the weary souls of urban America's down and out; Fogtown describes a new age unmistakably built on the twentieth century of Nelson Algren and Charles Bukowski.
In this compelling big-picture assessment of the U.S. war on Iraq, Mahajan combines his experience as an anti-Iraq sanctions activist with a keen analysis of U.S. foreign policy in the post-Cold War era to provide the analysis that has been overlooked in the mainstream debate. Situating Iraq within the larger context of post-9/11 foreign policy, he analyzes the Bush National Security Strategy and the new neoconservative vision of achieving increasing degrees of global domination and control. Presented with unflinching clarity, Mahajan';s research demonstrates that the war on Iraq was part of a much larger plan, assembled before 9/11 and, as stated by the Project for a New American Century, needing only a "new Pearl Harbor" to implement it.
In Global Governance, policy analyst Kristin Dawkins offers a refreshingly hopeful and astute roadmap towards a democratic future, framing the respective roles and accomplishments of corporations, governments, and citizen activists in light of the day-to-day needs of communities around the world. Written with an eye to the realities of power, Global Governance explores the origins and current state of play in the major global institutions, the rising dominance of global corporations and the growing wealth of the world';s political elite. In describing the impacts of international trade, aid and development loans on Southern economies and communities, Dawkins carefully explains the way governmental policies overseas become instruments of coercion in the context of globalization.
Writing with a passionate commitment to justice and democracy, Dawkins points out that the U.S. government is becoming increasingly hostile to the UN - even though many of the UN';s institutions and treaties were designed to address poverty and the other problems created by globalization. At a time when the UN';s very survival is being questioned, Global Governance is an urgent call to revitalize multilateralism and to build powerful new tools for democratic global governance.
In this classic talk delivered at the Poetry Center, New York, on February 16, 1970, Noam Chomsky articulates a clear, uncompromising vision of social change. Chomsky contrasts the classical liberal, libertarian socialist, state socialist, and state capitalist world views and then defends a libertarian socialist vision as "the proper and natural extension . . . of classical liberalism into the era of advanced industrial society." In his stirring conclusion Chomsky argues, "We have today the technical and material resources to meet man';s animal needs.We have not developed the cultural and moral resources or the democratic forms of social organization that make possible the humane and rational use of our material wealth and power.
Conceivably, the classical liberal ideals as expressed and developed in their libertarian socialist form are achievable. But if so, only by a popular revolutionary movement, rooted in wide strata of the population and committed to the elimination of repressive and authoritarian institutions, state and private. To create such a movement is a challenge we face and must meet if there is to be an escape from contemporary barbarism."
Whether Lee Stringer is describing "God's corner" as he calls 42nd Street, or his friend Suzy, a hooker and "past due tourist" whose infant child he sometimes babysits, whether he is recounting his experiences at Street News, where he began hawking the newspaper for a living wage, then wrote articles, and served for a time as muckraking senior editor, whether it is his adventures in New York's infamous Tombs jail, or performing community service, or sleeping in the tunnels below Grand Central Station by night and collecting cans by day, this is a book rich with small acts of kindness, humor and even heroism alongside the expected violence and desperation of life on the street. There is always room, Stringer writes, "amid the costume" jewel glitter...for one more diamond in the rough." Two events rise over Grand Central Winter like sentinels: Stringer's discovery of crack cocaine and his catching the writing bug. Between these two very different yet oddly similar activities, Lee's life unwound itself, during the 1980s, and took the shape of an odyssey, an epic struggle to find meaning and happiness in arid times. He eventually beat the first addiction with help from a treatment program. The second addiction, writing, has hold of him still.
Among the many accomplishments of this book is that Stringer is able to convey something of the vitality and complexity of a down--and--out life. The reader walks away from it humming its melody, one that is more wise than despairing, less about the shame we feel when confronted with a picture of those less fortunate, and more about the joy we feel when we experience our shared humanity.
In 1963, Annie Ernaux, 23 and unattached, realizes she is pregnant. Shame arises in her like a plague: Understanding that her pregnancy will mark her and her family as social failures, she knows she cannot keep that child.
This is the story, written forty years later, of a trauma Ernaux never overcame. In a France where abortion was illegal, she attempted, in vain, to self-administer the abortion with a knitting needle. Fearful and desperate, she finally located an abortionist, and ends up in a hospital emergency ward where she nearly dies.
In Happening, Ernaux sifts through her memories and her journal entries dating from those days. Clearly, cleanly, she gleans the meanings of her experience.
Few poets today, even very good ones, write lines, as Stanley Moss does, that are so exquisitely crafted you cannot help but remember them. "What is heaven but the history of color," begins the new long poem after which this book is named. "We know at ninety sometimes it aches to sing," begins another poem, for a woman upon her ninetieth birthday. In the hands of this master, "Ah who art in heaven," transmigrates to the quieting "ah, ah, baby." And here is Moss in an early poem: "I';ve always had a preference / for politics you could sing / on the stage of the Scala," ending that poem with words attributed to Lincoln: "I don';t know what the soul is, / but whatever it is, I know it can humble itself." A History of Color: New and Collected Poems by Stanley Moss is the first one-volume, complete edition of the poetry of this important living American poet. A History of Color proposes poetry that is made to be useful. Moss is our leading psalmist. Metaphors for wonder abound, his language one of sorrow and exaltation.
Howard Zinn began work on his first book for his friends at Seven Stories Press in 1996, a big volume collecting all his shorter writings organized by subject. The themes he chose reflected his lifelong concerns: war, history, law, class, means and ends, and race. Throughout his life Zinn had returned again and again to these subjects, continually probing and questioning yet rarely reversing his convictions or the vision that informed them. The result was The Zinn Reader. Five years later, starting with Howard Zinn on History, updated editions of sections of that mammoth tome were published in inexpensive stand-alone editions. This second edition of Howard Zinn on History brings together twenty-seven short writings on activism, electoral politics, the Holocaust, Marxism, the Iraq War, and the role of the historian, as well as portraits of Eugene Debs, John Reed, and Jack London, effectively showing how Zinn';s approach to history evolved over nearly half a century, and at the same time sharing his fundamental thinking that social movements--people getting together for peace and social justice--can change the course of history. That core belief never changed. Chosen by Zinn himself as the shorter writings on history he believed to have enduring value--originally appearing in newspapers like the Boston Globe or the New York Times; in magazines like Z, the New Left, the Progressive, or the Nation; or in his book Failure to Quit--these essays appear here as examples of the kindof passionate engagement he believed all historians, and indeed all citizens of whatever profession, need to have, standing in sharp contrast to the notion of "objective" or "neutral" history espoused by some. "It is time that we scholars begin to earn our keep in this world," he writes in "The Uses of Scholarship." And in "Freedom Schools," about his experiences teaching in Mississippi during the remarkable "Freedom Summer" of 1964, he adds: "Education can, and should, be dangerous."
Howard Zinn began work on his first book for his friends at Seven Stories Press in 1996, a big volume collecting all his shorter writings organized by subject. The themes he chose reflected his lifelong concerns: war, history, law, class, means and ends, and race. Throughout his life Zinn had returned again and again to these subjects, continually probing and questioning yet rarely reversing his convictions or the vision that informed them. The result was The Zinn Reader. Five years later, starting with Howard Zinn on History, updated editions of sections of that mammoth tome were published in inexpensive stand-alone editions. This second edition of Howard Zinn on War is a collection of twenty-six short writings chosen by the author to represent his thinking on a subject that concerned and fascinated him throughout his career. He reflects on the wars against Iraq, the war in Kosovo, the Vietnam War, World War II, and on the meaning of war generally in a world of nations that can';t seem to stop destroying each other. These readings appeared first in magazines and newspapers including the Progressive and the Boston Globe, as well as in Zinn';s books, Failure to Quit, Vietnam: The Logic of Withdrawal, The Politics of History, and Declarations of Independence. Here we see Zinn';s perspective as a World War II veteran and peace activist who lived through the most devastating wars of the twentieth century and questioned every one of them with his combination of integrity and hisorical acumen. In his essay, "Just and Unjust War," Zinn challenges us to fight for justice "with struggle, but without war." He writes in "After the War (2006) that while governments bring us into war, "their power is dependent on the obedience of the citizenry. When that is withdrawn, governments are helpless." In Howard Zinn on War, his message is clear: "The abolition of war has become not only desirable but absolutely necessary if the planet is to be saved. It is an idea whose time has come."
Falling somewhere between Louisa May Alcott';s Little Women and Federico Garcia Lorca';s The House of Bernarda Alba, Hunting the Last Wild Man tells the story of Candela and her extended family of nine women. Our protagonist has had her disappointments in love and floats from one job to another, ending up at the local mortuary as an apprentice embalmer. There she can tuck herself away from the everyday hubbub of life';s demands.
Late one night Candela finds she must work on the father of a gypsy clan, who has left instructions that he must be buried with his cane. Her days are changed forever when she discovers that the cane holds more than just the old man';s wishes.
With rich images suggestive of an Almódovar film, with emotional depth and intelligence, Vallvey explores the modern woman';s cynicism, as Candela attempts to integrate an impossibly marvelous stranger into her life.
An extraordinary account of how a laborer's son rose to challenge the power of despots, I Refuse to Die is both the autobiography of one gifted man who rose above the horrors of colonization, and an uncensored history of modern Kenya. The book is infused with the freedom songs of the Kenyan people, as well as dream prophecy and folk tales that are part of Kenya's rich storytelling tradition. Tracing the roots of the Mau Mau rebellion, wa Wamwere follows the evolution and degeneration of Jomo Kenyatta and the rise of Daniel arap Moi.
In 1979, wa Wamwere won a seat in the parliament, where he represented the economically depressed Nakuru district for three years. An outspoken activist and journalist, wa Wamwere was framed and detained on three separate instances, spending thirteen years in prison, where he was tortured but not broken. His mother and others led a hunger strike to free him and fellow political prisoners. Their efforts brought about a show trial at which Koigi was sentenced to four more years in prison and "six strokes of the cane," and escaped Kenya--and probably execution--only through the exertions of human rights groups and the government of Norway.
This brilliantly argued and wonderfully written collection by twenty-two of the best political analysts in the US analyzes the extraordinary and unprecedented threat the White House and its allies present to civil liberties, civil rights, the Constitution, international law, and the future of the planet.
Impeach the President unearths the stories behind election fraud in 2000 and 2004, the overt lies used to justify pre-emptive war on Iraq, the extensive, ongoing commission of war crimes and torture, the tragic failures in the lead-up to and aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and lesser-known but equally alarming offences of propaganda and disinformation, illegal spying, environmental destruction, and the violation of the separation of church and state. Loo and Phillips chillingly reveal the full threat behind the radical right-wing force that has taken over the world';s most powerful office.
The efficacy and risks of different birth control options are dramatically different today from what they once were thanks to scientific advances and increased awareness of STDs and other factors. In the most comprehensive book on birth control since the 1970s, women's health activist Laura Eldridge discusses the history, scientific advances, and practical uses of everything from condoms to the male pill to Plan B.
Do diaphragms work? Should you stay on the Pill? What does fertility awareness really mean? Find these answers and more in In Our Control, the definitive guide to modern contraceptive and sexual health. Eldridge presents her meticulous research and unbiased consideration of our options in the intimate and honest tone of a close friend. Eldridge goes on to explore large-scale issues that might factor into women's birth control choices, urging her readers to consider the environmental impacts of each method and to take part in a dialogue on how international reproductive health issues affect us all.
Whether you're looking for your first birth control method or want to know more about your current contraceptive choice, In Our Control offers the cutting edge information and practical wisdom you';ll need to make empowered decisions about your sexual health.