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This is an necessary book. It makes one think differently about key problems of environmentalism -- pulling one out of the micro and forcing a macro view. Sadly, it will be read by a lot of fewer people than it deserves. The fault of the book is the overwriting. The prose is beautiful, but there is simply too much wrapping paper around the gift.
A deeply necessary book--not only for its precise and timely intervention at such a tenuous political/ecological moment, but for the accessibility, thoughtfulness, and grace of its t only does this work broaden our thinking about the environmental politics in the sphere of the postcolonial, it allows us to think about violence itself in fresh ways. Specifically, violence not simply as an result of imbalanced political histories, but violence as a text we have to learn (and relearn!) how to read. This is a contribution that directly faces the entanglement of neoliberalism, deepening toxification of natural spaces/resources, growing economic disparities, and a widespread cultural illiteracy about questions of global crisis itself. For this reason, it's a book that speaks across disciplinary contexts more effectively than any other, in latest environmental ow Violence is a text written in and for a cultural moment that struggles to see beyond the politics of the momentary. As such, it is an opportunity to learn to think differently about global crisis, not only in a dozens of disciplinary contexts, but in the course of the everyday.
This is the type of book that we rarely stumble upon. We would not expect a book that exposes the relationship between environmentalism of the poor, environmental writer-activists and a proposed concept of slow violence to be a pleasant, attractive read. I would expect such a book to be interesting, useful, innovative, but still adept of the sterile, academic tone and prose. But that's not the case. By drawing examples from various writers-activists and their various circumstances (micro-minorities in the oil-rich but socially not good Nigerian delta, post-war environmental calamities in Iraq, an industrial spill-off in India and others), Nixon not only dissects ideas and underlying political, aesthetic and historical concepts, but also elegantly defends his hypothesis while he does all that.His hypothesis is that environmental degradation and the violence it entails is particularly difficult to pinpoint and to bring to the foreground of media and famous culture because of its lack of spectacular, condensed and vivid manifestation. Environmental hurt causes what Nixon describes as slow violence, violence that is spread throughout time and space, that dissipates slowly in an zone not clearly defined for months, years or even centuries (as in the case of radiation in nuclear try sites). This violence is also invisible since it can reach the cellular level through mutation and other forms of very intimate violence. The author then takes the challenge of how to describe and create this type of violence more visible and the respond he finds is through literature, with its linguistic richness, its power to tell concrete, tangible and private stories and its different tools to turn attention to the intimate, often invisible circumstances around us. He then proceeds to locate these writers in the "Global South" that turned to literature as a method to raise the subject of environmentalism and slow violence in the attempt to present the existence of this violence to a larger audience. The effect is astounding.
One of the best books on conditions in low-income neighborhoods. Studies of poverty in America should start with this book before moving on to any other discussions of poverty. Contemplation of environmental conditions as a factor in perpetuation of poverty and the issues associated with poverty is a must, and nobody does it better than this book.
An outstanding effort place forth by someone with leftist sympathies who truly wishes alternate energy was viable, but is honest enough to come to grips with the current reality of the industry. A lot of will scan the first half and think Ozzie leans right politically in the debate, only to search with thorough reading of the second half of the book, he actually leans left. Time well spent!
I live in MT where wind farms have popped up like weeds. The promises of power have long since given method to higher energy costs. Wind projects in the 300MW range seemed like a amazing until the project managers negotiated with the state public service commission that local power companies - not wind farms - had to for the power lines that bring wind power to the grid, and local power companies HAD to contain 20% of renewables in their power portfolio. Ironically, hydro is specifically excluded by state law as a renewable 'to encourage fresh development.' Things like this alienate the locals. After all that, the wind farms haven't lived up to their billing, producing a fraction of the claimed output. We got railroaded.Ozzie Zehner's book Described perfectly what happened to us: Promoters bragged up the 'data tag' capacity of the project but forgot to tell us about 'capacity factor - CF.' Data mark ratings are for ideal conditions. CF is a running average of the actual output because nature's hand is on the throttle, not the hand of the grid manager. A 1000Mw coal plant usually has a CF 0f 95%. Due to not good siting (too windy, built near migratory bird routes or rest stops) some of the wind projects have a CF in the single digits. So the power company has to maintain 'spinning reserve' to pick up the load when wind can't.Ozzie points out that replacing a 1000Mw coal plant with wind gets into some seriously strange numbers. Each turret must be spaced 3 blade diameters from it's neighbor. Blades are pushing 300ft, so we are talking 900 ft turret to tower. Build 1000 1Mw turrets to produce 1000Mw to replace the coal plant. But wait, CF for a farm is in the single digits - so one needs 10x that a lot of to replace the coal plant. Beautiful soon we are looking at 30 square miles of wind turrets to replace one coal plant on ten acres. And they will still need the coal plant as backup in spinning reserve. Increase the number even more if they ever obtain some sort of battery backup, because the batteries will need projects suffer even more weaknessses because of dirt, heat, sun angle and reduced output with age. It means that the often repeated claim that we could power the whole USA with a little project in the desert is simply at is just one example of ozzies's book. He addresses hydrogen, biofuels, nuclear, clean coal et al in a related fashion.Highly recommend.
Zehner goes right after a lot of environmentalist sacred calves and holds nothing back in Green Illusions. The effect is a really intriguing work that hammers home several key points. I'll test to summarize a few of them.1. Increasing energy production sources (by using power from "renewable" wind, solar, geothermal sources etc. or improving fossil fuel technologies) results in a reduction in energy prices, which history has proven time and time again, results in a rebound result in which consumption rises, consuming whatever short term gains were accomplished.2. Comparing the environmental impact of renewable energies to fossil fuels is fundamentally flawed because being more environmentally friendly than fossil fuels is a preposterously low bar which to clear. This results in "less bad" technologies being portrayed as "good" because they are slightly better than the previous "bad" options.3. Looking exclusively at the power generation side of the equation, whether fossil or renewable, is an approach akin to treating a symptom. Environmentalism would be more productive treating the causal side of the equation, which is consumption.Zehner's Green Illusions first section is quite related to Robert Bryce's Power Hungry . Zehner systematically goes down the list of energy technologies, fossil and renewable, and describes the realities of both their energy production potential and their environmental e latter half of the book is closer in tone to Robert Laughlin's Powering the Future . Zehner describes true solutions and ideas of what could occur to actual address the world's power issues via practical reductions in consumption through social, political and cultural changes.Zehner doesn't have all the answers, but he seems to have honed in on the problem, and as they say, before we can agree on the solution, we have to agree on the problem.
Brings fresh thinking to the environmental scene. Tries to go to the root cause of environmental issues and how the unintended consequences of some policies, when applied, can be detrimental. It is a balanced response to the fanatical climate change activists who seem to have an respond for everything. Well worth reading and thinking about the author's approach to environmental sustainability.
Today's Green Energy solutions are solutions to what problem? How do they solve them in true globe reality that never gets publicized? This book explores small known factors that will refocus your thoughts toward a more sustainable future, not just short term laboratory is is truly a thinking person's book. If you know the respond without any facts, don't bother to read.
I already had some mild opinions about environmentalism, drilling for oil, empty consumerism, the U.S. vehicle culture, etc before reading this book. I bought this book because I was seeking an honest, begin analysis of "what can the average person do support with the climate/environmental crisis?" This book has absolutely, 110%, answered my question.Zehner has provided necessary info that all Americans (really, all people in industrialized countries) should be exposed to. You'll search out why solar cells, wind power, ethanol, and other "green" energy solutions are not as excellent as they are touted in the famous media. You'll probably be shocked to comprehend exactly how deeply ingrained we are in U.S. culture with the need to drive cars, as much as possible, and work overtime. Think about it - what do people really want? More vacation time? More time with the people we love, mates and family? More time outdoors in nature? And yet what do we do everyday? We go to work, go to the store, sit in traffic, eat prepackaged food, and watch TV. Do these activities create us happier? Healthier? More able to have fun every moment? No. Absolutely not. The book contains realistic ways for true people to begin little in reversing the unhealthy, damaging habits we have developed in our society over the past few hundred years, as well as larger, more sweeping suggestions for communities and the government to consider.If you wish to read a book that will create you question your current method of life, and begin working toward living a better life right now, read this book. If you're paying any attention at all, it will spur you into action. Let's begin taking better care of ourselves and our earth, today, right now. Thanks to the author for a candid and striking discussion of subjects that have typically been swept under the rug in our American society. This is an perfect book that I will read and refer back to again and again.
Perfect information, informative, insightful. You don't have to agree with, or certainly like, everything the author has to say to obtain a lot out of this book. It is almost sad that he is breaking fresh ground in talking about that taboo topic of the PROBLEMS with our teenage love affair with alternative, "green" metimes I think the data offered up is a bit skewed in defense of his points, but search me someone who doesn't do that for their publication, he is reasonable in his conclusions overall, even if not perhaps 100% always accurate - arguably, again, maybe he is - and that's the point, these things need to be discussed, even argued about more. If there is one thing I'd conclude about this book, it's not to allow all the poor news obtain you down and throw this book on the pile of "Debbie Downer" harbingers of poor news, it is more than that. We need to evolve in our love affair and grow up when it comes to assessing - and applying - the realities of alternative energy beyond the conscripts of for-profit capitalism, and dreamy, black and white thinking of too a lot of environmentalists who wish to embrace all energy renewables, all the time, in all places. And what I love most is that he talks about reducing CONSUMPTION over all. Finally, someone is saying the "c' word!
I checked this book out of the library but feel it's such an necessary book, thatI ended up buying a copy on amazon to hold in my permanent book collection. My only regret is that I did not read it before building a "green" home in a rural area. Although some of the author's suggestions are not practical (people like myself who live in extremely rural locations with few people/neighbors cannot logistically be without a car, cannot expect public transportation, cannot have interdependent/cooperative relationships with neighbors if there are no neighbors, cannot have conveniences such as medical clinic, shopping etc. in one "village" (I have to go 30 miles one method to meal and other supplies)etc. But he does expose the farce that is green energy today (for instance, our house is solar powered with a battery bank - but in 7 years when the batteries wear out, they will be an environmental landfill nightmare). OTOH, his suggestion to use more passive solar is right on - and it's (just build lots of windows on your southern and western sides). Our house gets to about 65 degrees F even on terribly cold days due to passive solar. I highly recommend that you read this book if you are hoping to live a "greener" lifestyle.
Bought this book assuming it was going to be another anti green energy, burn oil for better results book. I was completely wrong on this. Very informative and a amazing read. It looks into the side effects of clean energy no one wants to talk about. Amazing book
Very inciteful book with a lot of amazing information. I may not agree with everything Zehner writes, but he does raise some perfect questions that challenge assumptions the green industry makes in terms of efficiency especially when looking at the embedded energy question. I appreciate how he uncovers how we can be manipulated by huge business and government. Highly recommended.
I can't deny that the research of this book is very solid and in-depth. There's a list in the front of the book with every mentioned name, and a heavy amount of sources in the back as could read this book and be an expert on the history of the Hetch Hetchy at being said, I'm not from California, and I'm not interested in civil engineering or anything of the sort. I'm an environmental science student and I like the natural world. I found the topic matter incredibly boring, and resent having to read a book this size for my American environmental history course. The book is so incredibly detailed, to give you an example, at one part Righter mentions what kind of stationary the Sierra Club members wrote on during a meeting... You can tell he's infatuated with the topic matter. Sadly, I am not.
A very necessary book that should be widely read as the nation wakes up to the glorious chance of restoring this majestic valley to its original pristine state for all mankind, for all time. It should be done, it can be done, it will be done. This book fully documents the past; it is up to us to write the future.
This is the only book I have ever read on the Hetch Hetchy matter and I don't think I would have to read another one. Although the author reveals himself as more of an environmentalist in the sense that he would have like to have seen the valley preserved, I felt he was very, very fair in describing the motivations, merits and flaws of both sides and debunking the myth that this was solely enviromentalism versus progress. His research led him to the conclusion that even John Muir was not looking to hold the valley in a pristine state. He and his followers thought that such beauty should be experienced and shared by everyone and they wanted to develop the valley for tourism, probably of the kind we see today in the Yosemite Valley. Other themes were public power vs. privately owned utilities and municipal water systems vs. personal water companies that were supplying the town prior to the HH dam being built. All these debates were also taking put in the backdrop of Teddy Roosevelt's progressivism, the latest birth of the National Forest and National Park systems and the devastation of the 1906 SF earthquake and fire (for which there wasn't enough water to successfully fight).The author manages to tell his even story in a relatively short 244 pages, including interesting chapters on the legacy of the HH controversy and the talk of restoring the valley someday, a notion which I consider very far-fetched given the costs of replacing the dam's water as well as the hydroelectric power it produces. Pleasant as the sight of the valley would be, in today's globe of fighting for every public dollar and the pressure to build more electric generation, I can't imagine we would agree to this. The author admits as much, but applauds the fact that it is at least talked about.
This book goes far beyond covering the subject of Hetch Hetchy. It is a very amazing primer on the history of San Francisco and The Peninsula. I thought at times it went into more detail than I was interested in knowing, but then, that's what it claims to do. A very interesting book.
Hetch Hetchy was a valley In the Sierras related in beauty to Yosemite. It was dammed in the early 1900s to provide required water to a growing San Francisco region. There are a number of problems of relevance in 2019: Was the loss of this valley at the expense of providing essential water to a growing community worth the esoteric coat of losing the valley and the financial cost of building the dam and water transportation system? Can the valley be reclaimed by destroying the dam? If so, what would be the cost of providing an alternative water supply?
Who was Abe Ruef? What affect, indirectly or otherwise, did he have on Hetch Hetchy? Robert Righter's thoughtful history of the valley identifies Ruef among notable others and the roles they played in determining Yosemite's fate as part reservoir. Righter provides a rich story of a booming and brash San Francisco (which is reason enough to read the book), followed by an informative acc of the building of O'Shaughnessy Dam, as well as the environmental legacy of Hetch Hetchy and the cause of restoration. Ultimately, Righter reveals myths surrounding the damming of John Muir's beloved valley and even myths surrounding Muir. The story is captivating and despite knowing the outcome, one cannot support but follow along with the hope that things would have turned out differently.
Educational and entertaining from beginning to end. Extensive research supported by a powerful voice with a balanced perspective. I highly recommend Righter's perfect historical work. This is where both the Sierra Club and western water battles began. A must egory Zeigler
Ignorant twaddle from a pseudoscientific perspective painstakingly masked as actual science. His facts and figures are cherry picked to fit the opinions of his target audience, and in absolutely no method reflect the overwhelming evidence from the global scientific community (to which he claims membership, but claims superiority over, when he makes ignorant and unsupported claims versus the validity of science in general).This is literally a wolf in sheep’s clothing situation and is a danger to anyone reading it taking this propagandists opinion as scientifically objective truth. This is confirmation bias 101, and I am amazed at how poorly it is disguised as truth.
I watched his film Riot and the Dance and it was great! (Looking forward to part 2) I can’t wait to finish this book as it provides a Biblical worldview on global environmentalism. On a side note; I’m curious as to why it was printed on 8.5x11 paper as it makes a small more cumbersome to keep and read and seems like a waste of trees.
This book serves its purpose as an introduction to a biblical approach to the environment for which it is intended. It can seem repetitive, but I think it is important in to contain the whole of the environmental disciplines.
I first bought this book and it arrived in a large size. I sent it back not pleased. However, they are now sending the correct size! The content of this book is right on! If you are a scientist, farmer, or just someone who loves the outdoors and wants to learn and look at it from God's perspective then this is the right book for you. It could easily be used as a bible study book for a group. It has prompting questions at the end of each chapter that obtain you thinking back on what you just read.
A Various Shade of Green a amazing take on how Christians should be thinking about environmentalism. And it is fundamental that we should be thinking about it. In the book, Dr. Wilson defines the Dominion Mandate as "global wildlife management," and that is exactly what is. People need to be careful not to use and abuse creation, but to use it properly and respectfully. I am enjoying reading the book (half method through!), and have been very encouraged by what I have read so far. What better method to know your Creator than by studying, and enjoying, the works of His hands!
Dr. Wilson has given a unbelievable book on the Dominion Mandate. The book does not touch on every topic concerning environmentalism and conservation, but it gets at the core problems of creation care. This is THE book for Christians to read on the topic that will not bore then or confuse them. The content is not too heavy, but sufficient. One caveat: although the book content is excellent, the quality of the physical book is poor. This really surprised me. While it might sound trivial, it seems the design and production were given zero effort. The odd format and margins were a bit distracting for a couple of chapters. I [email protected]#$%! was presented in a more suitable format and nicer materials, which would create for a more enjoyable read. It's still worth purchasing and enjoying, however.
I'm really liking this. It is, so far, a unbelievable introduction and overview of the whole situation of the environment and what christians do (and should) think about it, and do about it!
I'm sure the content is great! However, I was very surprised to see narrow columns of print and giant margins. Was this a misprint?? The book could've been printed at 5x7" and would look normal.
This book is such an interesting, well balanced and simple read! Thought provoking even for people who’ve been going to church all their lives. It is an necessary topic and the writer really takes all “stakeholders” into account. Highly recommend!
I'm neither a climate change denier nor afraid that the Earth is about to freeze/warm to death. But I wanted to know what all the dire hoopla has been about. If you are interested in having ALL available info before you begin into either tirade, this book is one of several you'll read.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this. Armstrong's scholarship is impeccable. And I learned so much about the origins and histories of the world's religions. For that it's a amazing ever, after I read the introduction which states her thesis that religion has not been the animus for most of the battles and violence in history, she goes on to prove the opposite. Part of it has to do with how she defines "religion". Admittedly, just because someone claims that God is their inspiration to commit atrocities or go to war, doesn't mean that the doctrines of that religion help that. Today we see widespread examples of extremist and apostate terrorist groups justifying their acts on fundamentalist religious grounds, even though they are repudiated by the majority of their mstrong's contention seems to be a more or less cynical one, that battles fought ostensibly in the name of religion are actually fought on behalf of secular power, or even for easy economic reasons. But what she does not seem to wish to acknowledge is that religion has, more often than not, been co-opted (as have the clerical establishments of those faiths) into the justification and help of such one point she does acknowledge that it is ideology, rather than faith per se, that seems the true culprit in war. In this view, the ideologies of religious movements can be seen as indistinguishable from social movements like fascism or communism. All taken to their purist extremes can end in mass if you read "Fields of Blood" without expecting it to reinforce the null hypothesis, that religion isn't the root cause of most wars, it can be a very thought-provoking experience.
Karen Armstrong should not need another introduction. She left behind her life as a Roman Catholic nun to devote a lifetime studying globe religion, and she becomes one of the greatest religious scholars that has ever lived in the process. She is now, in her own words, a "freelance monotheist", and it is reflected in her careful, respectful and unbiased method of writting on every various religion. This book is another testament on this deep care and her range of knowledge on the topic matter. Fields of Blood seemingly discusses every single violence conducted in the name of religion, from ancient societies like the Summerians, the Assyrians, the Egyptians, the Greeks, Zoroastrians, Confucian, to the Abraham religion and the a lot of religions in the Sub Continent, to the era of first secular states (the US and post-revolution France), until the rise of Zionism, the current "war on terror" era and the most latest rise of ISIS. Within this scope, she masterfully narrated on the politics, the struggles and the social interactions in each one of those eras, and explains us the gradual and intricate evolution of religion from the time religion, state and everyday lives have not been separated yet, into the religion as we know it e book is so full of info and so airtight, however, that it can sometimes feel a small too complicated and unecessarily detailed. But I believe it is not meant to be memorised but rather to give us the huge picture of how massively complex religious evolution always, Ms Armstrong focused on the historical facts rather than the mystics or the folklores, and thus some may search the revelation in the book unsettling, such as the degree of editing the Bible experienced, or how Islamic Hadits were conveniently tailored, or the mysterious discovery of questionable scrolls containing the teachings of Moses for the Jews, despite the fact that during Moses' time in 8th century BC teachings were taught verbally rather than in writting - all of which have 1 underlying purpose: to match the rulers' political needs at the time. And this is the central thesis of the book, where all violence that are conducted in the name of religion are all ultimately man made. And the scripture-based justification that comes with them are nothing short of a political doctrine, not much various than the atheist doctrines by Hitler, Stalin and Karen Armstrong herself puts it "terrorism is fundamentally and inherently political, even when other motives—religious, economic, or social—are involved. Terrorism is always about "power—acquiring it or keeping it." And so, according to one of the pioneering experts in the field, "all terrorist organizations, whether their long-term political aim is revolution, national self-determination, preservation or restoration of the status quo, or reform, are engaged in a struggle for political power with a government they want to influence and replace."" Indeed, our main focus when it comes to religious violence should not be the religion, but what have happened in that specific occurance that made violence in the name of religion. And to that end, learning from this book, there seems to be a pattern where all root causes of violence eventually come from these 4 stages: 1. A group of minority are treated unfairly or even oppressed 2. A leader emerged among them to war for their cause, which originally preach non-violence 3. Only to be crushed by those in power, pushing them further into the edge and force them to be radical 4. And so they begin their radical offensives, justifying their violent acts by (mis)quoting their Holy Book and fitting their oppressor into their doctrine (i.e. Infidels, the devil, etc).Karen Armstrong then elaborate, "the claim that the basic motivation of a terrorist action is political may seem obvious—but not to those who seem determined to regard such atrocious acts of violence as merely "senseless." A lot of of that view, not surprisingly, search religion, which they regard as a byword for irrationality, to be the ultimate cause." Questioning which religion is more violent than the other is, therefore, completely missing the point. Although she did admit that "this, of course, is not to deny that religion has often been implicated in terrorist atrocities." But nevertheless, "it is far too simple to create it a scapegoat rather than trying to see what is really going on in the world." There are thousands more words that can be written in this review, with thousands specific examples can be derived from this book. It is indeed the hardest review I've written so far, simply because there are so a lot of amazing things about the book, and so a lot of necessary points that I wish to cover but could not possibly fit them all in just one short review. It is definitely one of my top 10 books to read to understand how the globe really works. It is trully a masterpiece.
Karen Armstrong seeks to respond the claim that “religion has been responsible for more war, oppression, and suffering than any other human institution.” Her answer? “More than what?”Before the creation of the nation-state, Armstrong suggests that people thought about politics in a religious way. In fact, without professional armies, “society would either have remained in a primitive state or would have degenerated into ceaselessly warring hordes.” She reaches these conclusions in almost 400 pages sourced by over a thousand footnotes and thirty pages of bibliographic mstrong begins with human society as farmers and herdsmen. Violence and coercion was the heart of human existence, often ritualized by animal sacrifice. Herdsmen discovered life was easier when they raided and stole from the farmers. Leaders became and retained their position by violence and by issuing ‘laws’ that helped them retain their position. Warfare became a part of “life, central to the political, social, and economic dynamics” of society. Society remained harsh really until only the latest few hundred years – and it remains harsh in those parts of the globe where religion and politics have not been truly ’s a amazing read. Not an simple read, but a amazing one.
A thorough and insightful exploration of the history of different religions and their relationship to violence. Very informative, detailed, and usually well-sourced. Gives a amazing fresh perspective on the degree to which religion in general or any particular religion may be considered violent or linked to violence. However, the author's private bias towards religious faith and versus non-belief skews some parts of her analysis. Occasionally this gets a bit absurd as violence in early religious civilizations is blamed on the state, even though the author makes clear the state and the religion were one and the same. As separation of church and state increases, the author continues to blame the state as inspiring violence by religious groups. At the same time, the author discusses the secular state as itself becoming a religion. These contradictory and convoluted themes somewhat undermine what is otherwise a very persuasive thesis. As a non-believer who thought he was well-educated about globe history and different religions, I learned a amazing and was overall persuaded by the author's case. I highly recommend this book for skeptics and believers alike, particularly those curious about the history of religion or religion's relationship with violence.
I just finished reading this book. I found it full of relevant info regardless of which side of the argument you lean toward. It was fairly simple to read and not written on a level of which would require you to have additional research material next to you as you read. However, I did search two minor problems: 1) Some of the material is outdated and could use an updated edition. 2) Although the additional points and side notes were informative, they were a small irritating. They were peppered throughout the book on almost every page and, most of the time, they did not correspond with a stopping point in the main text. I found myself having to read the side notes and hold the main points of the text in my head while I continued reading; basically, keeping two running thoughts in my head for 300 plus pages. Overall I would recommend reading this book.
From Gore bashing to factual statistics based on reality, this book takes you into the myths and deceptions of the Global Warming alarmists and puts their "figures" in its place. Gives you the true info and doesn't shy away from the bind placed on society, all in the name of saving the planet from ourselves.
I enjoyed reading this scholarly effort and search myself in agreement with the author most of the time. She points out that while religion has often been blamed for battles and different other human evils, careful examination of historical facts clearly reveal that the root cause of battle and other human acts of violence on huge scales is politics. Religion, however, has often been waiting in the wings in the form of convenient ways to rally parts of society or to paint these acts with a sort of spiritual permission or encouragement. I gave the book 4 stars only because the author’s bias gradually became evident as the latter chapters evolved: those that discussed modern times. She was obviously quite critical of the US and its historical role in sowing the seeds of hatred in the middle east, particularly following 911, and even tacitly suggested that the US should have done nothing afterward in to better counter terrorism. This chapter (Global Jihad) had a faintly apologetic feel to it, favoring the opponents of the US, referring to Bin Laden’s death, for example, as an “assassination,” and describing President Bush, with his “100 million evangelical Christians,” as having a “messianic streak.” She also too easily dismissed the role of Islam by pointing out that a lot of of the more infamous terrorist attacks (including 911) have been carried out by people with small training or familiarity with the Quran. I was reminded of a limo ride I took from Fresh York to Fresh Jersey a few years after 911. My driver was Muslim and had been raised in Pakistan. We talked the whole way. At one point I asked him if he’s read the Quran. He told me that he hadn’t because he was illiterate, but he was a firm believer.
Ms Armstrong lacks COMPASSION for the millions of innocent people (including children!) who have been killed because they were members of a various religion or a various ethnic group. Whatever the motivation for perpetrating mass murder is unimportant , the abominable effect is the same. Religious leaders are in complicity when they look the other method when a mass murder is taking place. It is even worse when religious leaders attempt to justify or explain away why members of their religion took an active part or quietly watched as an act of genocide took place.
Fields of Blood is a very interesting and lucid read,but I could not support but to message that mstrong is very biased when it comes to Christianity .In one chapter of the book called Jesus Not of this globe I was very confused ,because 90% of the chapter was about society before and after the death of Christ. The very small info that she did tell about him in this chapter can really be summed up as Jesus was just another guy who hated the romans like the rest of the Jews, and it was not he but the Paul who made our idea of Christianity .Other than that this is an awesome book I learned a lot about Judaism an Islam .
Third copy of this book and want I could just stand on a corner and hand 'em out. This is the definitive book on so-called "global warming". This is probably one of the worst hoaxes ever perpetrated on civilization just the chutzpah of anyone actually believing that people could actually change weather. I believe in "climate change", too: it's called Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Predictable, too.
While I've never doubted that we have constant climate change, I've always been a skeptic about how much mankind has contributed to the process. I come from a background in finance, economics, and systems, and studying the body politic for over 50 years. I learned long ago, to never accept anything as settled, especially when it comes to science. This book has very much brought to light the research and data which the alarmists and globalists conveniently ignore. It also points out with certainty, that the "Kyoto Accords" are, at their core, nothing but a grab by socialized economies. And since it conveniently lets China, India, Korea, and a lot of more developing economies, off the financial hook, one has to wonder why; this book nails t, here we are more than ten years after this scholarly work, and the Socialist/Fascists of the globe are still smitten with a fantasy of controlling weather and climate. An effort of fools and is book should be needed reading for anyone over the age of 12. It's written clearly and concisely, and the true facts about how our climate works. For instance, none of the so-called climate models take into consideration things like water vapor, clouds, and solar activity; all of which affect the climate over the years. The alarmists, until forced into it, completely neglected the early warmth of the middle ages, and the Small Ice Age, which affected the globe until the mid-19th ep this kinds of books coming. They are invaluable.
We all recognize that anytime the govt tells us there is a issue ("the sky is falling") and the only solution is to give that same govt bigger chunks of our paychecks - a scam is being perpetrated. This book provides lots and lots of info about how that scam is being played r those who think this movement might be right, you should read this book just to inform yourself of what the other side is looking l the facts in this book can be further verified on the web.
Money, Power and Violence - The Story of Bonnie and Clyde is a amazing book. The book is short at only 22 pages, but still manages to convey all the necessary historical elements to the history of this couple. The book talks at length about how Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow met, as well as very effectively covers the history of the one of the most violent couples in history. I very much enjoyed reading this book and would definitely recommend ank you for reading my review.
This ambitious work purports to examine "religion and the history of violence." I would recommend it for more than that, however. For its first 10 chapters (spanning the very beginnings of civilization to 1914), the book functions as a worthy introduction to globe history for those who don't have the time to devote to the Durants' multi-volume "Story of Civilization." Yes, you do need to know a small about globe history for this book to create sense, but anyone in college or later should be able to integrate it into their mstrong's overall politics are clearly left-liberal, but she manages to fairly describe the role of religion in the majority of human history, when a sacred context was sought for all human activity. She describes how Western Enlightenment philosophers and European politicians turned religion into a personal location of inner beliefs and rarely action -- and then loses interest in the West. The latest three chapters focus almost exclusively on the Middle East and South Asia as a sort of rebuttal to the received wisdom of unthinkingly pro-Western elites like Thomas Friedman and the early Andrew Sullivan.I frankly do not have time here to grapple with all the worthy arguments created in this book, although I have decided to join the discussion group at my father's church that reads one chapter a week, and may well use the book for a future discussion group at my own church. Armstrong's insight into the human condition is captured by this paragraph from the Afterword:"John Locke believed that the separation of church and state was the key to peace, but the nation-state has been far from war-averse. The issue lies not in the multifaceted activity that we call 'religion' but in the violence embedded in our human nature and the nature of the state, which from the begin needed the forcible subjugation of at least 90 percent of the population. As Ashoka discovered, even if a ruler shrank from state aggression, it was impossible to disband the army. The Mahabhrata lamented the dilemma of the warrior-king doomed to a life of warfare. The Chinese realized very early that a degree of force was essential to civilized life. Ancient Israel tried initially to escape the agrarian state, yet Israelities soon discovered that much as they hated the exploitation and cruelty of urban civilization, they could not live without it; they too had to become 'like all the nations.' Jesus preached an inclusive and compassionate kingdom that defied the imperial ethos, and he was crucified for his pains. The Muslim ummah began as an alternative to the jahili injustice of commercial Mecca, but eventually it had to become an empire, because an absolute monarchy was the best and perhaps the only method to hold the peace. Modern military historians agree that without professional and responsible armies, human society would either have remained in a primitive state or would have degenerated into ceaselessly warring hordes."The latest sentence seems especially appropriate for Memorial Day -- we really do owe it all to the troops. Armstrong's latest few chapters, particularly chapter 10, perfectly summarize how while a lot of things have gotten better as a effect of the Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution, other things have gotten worse. The latest three chapters argue that people in developing countries, especially those where the US is conducting military operations, owe their misery to the West and that we therefore reciprocally owe them some interest in their welfare and right to develop, according to the tenets of every religion in history. This sweeping review of the history of warfare, religion, and their relationship belongs on the bookshelf of anyone with an interest in these topics.
Review of Karen Armstrong's Fields of Blood: Religion and the History of Violenceby Jerry WoolpyThe thesis is that secular movements and nations co-opt religion to help aggression within their countries and abroad; and that all major religions, Hindu, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Confucius, Buddhist, Sikh and others have reacted strongly versus militarism and for neighborliness. In fact most religious movements are founded on preachments versus violence. Starting with our evolution from hunter gatherers to agrarians, conflict over land and then industrial materials has been the basic cause of exploitation and war. By a comprehensive overview of archaeological and historical evidence Armstrong argues versus the claim that religion, properly understood in the terms of its founders and serious practitioners, has not been the casus belli. In fact it has been quite the one of her most convincing lines of evidence she traces the history of Islam from its inception, through the Crusades, Byzantium, the Ottomans, the arbitrary national divisions created by the colonial-imperial allies after WWI, the founding of Israel after WWII, and Osama bin Laden. She vindicates the Islamic faith and otherwise explains jihad as predominately chauvinistic and secular. Jihad and the ideology of those who would restore the caliphate are largely contradictory to the primary principles of the religion. In fact one of our most feared Islamic traditions, Shariah Law, forbids violence versus civilians and prohibits any attack on a country where Muslims are allowed to practice their religion freely. According to the Quran, Muslims must not strike back but must leave revenge to Allah. Ninety-three percent of those polled by Gallup in thirty-five predominately Muslim countries from 2001 to 2007 condemned the attacks of 9/11 and quoted the Quran to present that the killing of innocent people could have no put in Islam. But, Armstrong concludes her 529 page highly recommended book, "We are all, religious and secularist alike, responsible for the current predicament...There is no state...that has not incurred the taint of the warrior."
The content of the book has been scholarly conceived. It weaves amicably the actions of individuals as well as societies and belief sets, revealing the similarities of the outcome in the spectrum from goodness to evilness and visa om the book I extracted human nature manifests itself through dozens of actions that are painstakingly justified through a jumble of social, religious and political nclusion, people when perceive threat, existential or otherwise, will react instinctively and justify their justifiable or unjustifiable actions through one of the above or a mixture of the above listed deliveries.
Really fascinating! One of the most famed outlaws stories in history presented in a short, simple and fun to read book like this - I love it! To me, the pages just flew by as i learned the true story of Bonnie And Clyde!Highly reccommended read - Go obtain it!
Very amazing book to learn about something that happened a long time ago to understand the kind of crimes that were committed and how they were able to obtain away from the law and how they had a tragic into their life but not being able to be buried together side by side like Bonnie wanted
I have always been a fan of Historical Gangsters and the story of Bonnie and Clyde has always fascinated me. Their tale goes method beyond the glamour of Hollywood. They were true people with true criminal intent. Plus, the factual tidbits at the end of the book created me realize how much I missed by just reading about them on the surface. I must say Mr. Williams laid everything out chop and dry. This is quite short and readable, and glad I learned more about them
Eight years ago, as I crossed the Uganda-Kenya border, I was sequestered in a shack, interrogated, threatened with prison, and ultimately needed to a bribe by border guards. After that harrowing experience, I returned to my hotel and recounted the story to the first friendly face I saw: my sympathetic colleague Ted Miguel. Ted and his colleague Ray spent the succeeding years studying violence and corruption in not good countries; and this sweet book is the recent fruit of those labors.What can economics tell us about corruption and violence around the world? More, perhaps, than you'd expect. Ray and Ted use surprise changes in a dictator's health to measure the value of political connections in Indonesia, rainfall to capture the result of recessions on violence in Africa, and tricks in the trade data to reveal smuggling. (That's not to mention the parking tickets - Chapter Four.) They show their clever research in surprisingly clear English, and they draw on the similar research of other economists as well. They really know how to tell a story: I was captivated by the opening recounting of Kenyan author Ngugi's woes and delighted by the creative policy making of Antanas Mockus, mayor of 's hard not to compare famous economics books today to Freakonomics: Gangsters has the advantages of Ted and Ray's witty, pleasant voice, more of a thematic focus, and none of the self-adulation that took away some Freakonomics' spite the focus on corruption and violence, ultimately the book is presenting a miscellany of work that is similar but isn't (and perhaps cannot be) circumscribed into a larger theory. Occasionally I found myself wishing a central theory like you search in Malcolm Gladwell's books. But then again, those theories usually aren't convincing for exactly the reason that Ted and Ray don't have one: they are careful and big, broad theories are not. I really enjoyed the clear policy recommendation of Rapid Conflict Prevention Help in Chapter 6, and I look forward to more clear recommendations in the next book. Again, Ted and Ray are careful and tend not to recommend policies that don't have clear evidence to stand on. Not all scholars are comfortable laying out powerful recommendations on limited evidence; two books by scholars who are more comfortable are The Bottom Billion and The End of Poverty. (As I recall, that's also the self-definition given by an economic hit man!) The main policy recommendation, ultimately, is more evidence-based policy making, particularly randomized trials of development programs (but with a healthy view of the realistic scope for these kinds of trials).This book won't just present you that economists can be clever (although it will present you that): It shows that economics, cleverly applied, can illuminate some of the most intractable development issues of our time. I strongly recommend it. And if you don't trust me, Publishers Weekly said that in this "surprisingly spry" read, "fascinating insights abound" . Take it from both of us and learn something. Publishers Weekly, 6 October 2008.
These two authors have come together to provide the reader with a nuanced and complicated view of development. Mainly, because development is complicated. They provide specific stories, research, and ideas about how some issues can be solved. They begin us on the path of finding a broader theory by figuring out piece by piece what works. Insightful, though provoking, and incomplete; which is exactly as it was designed.
Both for economist and non-economist this is an excelent book that gives you a amazing look over what development economics with and what are some of the tools that it uses to addres those e book is short and well written, I really recomend it.
The book is about Stonewall Jackson - one of America's greatest battlefield commanders. What matters most to Civil Battle afficiandos is Stonewall and the Civil War. I care as much about Stonewall pre-military, especially pre-Civil War, as I do about the Titantic before it hit the is book gives an perfect summary of Stonewall Jackson during the Civil War. From the moment he left VMI for Richmond to the moment of his death. The items that matters most. There is some material from before the Civil Battle but the book has the title Rebel Yell for a reason.If you are interested in whether Stonewall's baby shoes were bronzed or not, then this is not the book for you. If you are interested in Stonewall the Civil Battle battlefield phenomenon, then I highly recommend this book.
This book should obtain an award for the most misleading title of the year. It is a beach ball approach to global corruption and should be read with milk and cookies on the side of the pool. Chapter 2 "SUHARTO" (one of the most corrupt regimes and battle criminals of the 20th century, mind you); is completely negligent on the points of authentic history. The attitude presented can be summed up by a two line quote from page 39. "Corruption in Suharto's Indonesia wasn't some petty shakedown by underpaid policemen or labor inspectors trying to create ends meet. It was huge business." If you are doing serious research, that is the type of insight you can expect from the entire book. If you are looking for real leads in the globe of black shop politics and dirty pools; don't waste your time here. The only thing more misleading than the title are the 'pre-release' editorial reviews loaded with praises that are carefully crafted to a book that fails to rise to any level of competency.
This book is a useful addition to other books examining the development question. In addition to takes head on the problems of corruption and violence which can lay waste to the best laid plans. The correlation between the weather and violence is interesting but when seen versus the more harsher climes of the north shouldn't the African be able to adapt and thrive? With corruption isn't it that our elite have small to no experience in wealth creation and therefore see corruption as means to an end beyond just greed?The find continues. But I am more than glad to have happened on this offering.
Thomas Jonathan Jackson! Stonewall (as he was dubbed by General Bernard Bee for his stellar defense of Henry House Hill during the war of First Bull Rull) Old Blue Light; Old Jack was a man of complexity and military genius. Jackson was born in what is today West Virginia in 1824. He was raised by his uncle. Jackson graduated 17th in h is class at West Point in 1846. Jackson served with honor and courage in the Mexican War. He resigned from the United States Troops but resigned to become a physics professor at VMI from 1851-61. Jackson wed twice (his first wife Ellie died in childbirth) to daughters of Presbyterian minister and college president';s daughters. At home Jackson was a kind poetic type who loved gardening, long walks and reading Shakespeare in the warm cocoon of his family circle. Jackson was a powerful Christian who was a deacon in the Presbyterian Church. Stonewall refused to read or send letters on the Sabbath Day. His quiet routine life of domestic and teaching routine was ended with the coming of the Civil War. Jackson said he would throw away the scabbard and take up the sword in defense of Virginia. He owned six slaves and taught an African-American Sunday School class. During the method he rose to greatness with his brilliant Valley Campaign and outstanding leadership in such horrific wars asThe Seven Days, Second Bull Run, Cedar Mountain, Antietam, Fredericksburg and his death by friendly fire at Chancellorsville. His flanking attack on the Union 11th Corp at Chancellorsville showed the genius of Jackson and General Robert E. Lee. My favorite book on Stonewall Jackson is by his foremost biographer the distinguished James I. "Bud" Robertson who is a professor emeritus at Virginia Tech. Gwynne recognizes Robertson for his unbelievable book on Jackson admitting that his own book is focused on Jackson in the Civil War. The book does provide rich biographical info about Jackson but is less comprehensive that the Robertson biography. This book is less academic that Robertson';s biography. It is written in an simple to understand journalistic style. The book includes a lot of maps which support simplify and create understandable the strategies used by Stonewall during the war. The long book reads quickly and should be a must for anyone interested in Jackson, the Confederate Troops and the American Civil War. Stonewall Jackson was secretive, ambitious, pious and deadly to Yankees. He is the Oliver Cromwell of the South. His devotion to duty and God is commendable in our skeptical age! An perfect effort worthy of your attention!
I've read at least six biographies on Jackson and countless other similar texts and books about him and the battles. This is the best biography I've read about him. The author came at it from a small various direction than most authors. This book is more about the man, his personality and thinking. Yes there were descriptions of the battles, but they ended up being more like CiffsNotes versions. I felt like I got to know Stonewall more in this bio than any I've read so, the writer was very engaging. Not to dis the other biographers, but this ended up being one of those "hard to place down" books. Which was amazing since it went on for almost 600 pages.I can think of three reasons why I appreciated this book more than the others.1) He stuck to Stonewall and didn't head down countless rabbit trails of other people's lives and political events. When he did have to go that direction, he got to the point, and quickly got back on the topic at hand.2) He is the only author (other than Dabney, of course) who seems to understand the thinking of a Presbyterian mind. Stonewall was a deeply religious man of the Calvinist/Augustinian school of Biblical interpretation. He was able to show a fair view, when most other authors uncomfortably just quote some text on what he actually believed. I'm not saying Gwynne is a Presbyterian, but he, better than the rest, seems to be able to fully integrated it into his work and he seems to understand how it affected Jackson's thinking.3) The maps we great. Detailed enough to be worth looking at, but not a hodge podge of confusing arrows and blocks.I have a shelf full of Civil Battle books, and I can honestly say that if you can only read one book on Stonewall Jackson, read Rebel Yell.
Von Drehle place a lot of effort researching this book on the Florida Death Penalty. It was worth it. Since 1997, the Florida Supreme Court has needed all judges to take a five day course called Handling Capital Cases through the Florida College of Advanced Judicial Studies before presiding over a death case. I was a member of the faculty teaching the course for a lot of years. I either personally knew, or at least knew of, almost every person mentioned in the book. The book was needed reading for the Handling Capital Cases Course for several years until it went out of print. My only regret is there is no update. Perfect book. An simple read even for those who have no legal background and know nothing about the death penalty.
Very well written - I couldn't place it down. Much of the book with the issues of the DP in Florida in the 80's & 90's. The periods and people written about in the book are specifically pertinent to the period when I was an anti-death penalty advocate - versus it's reinstatement in my own state. I wrote to several guys on the Row in Florida at that time and visited one (now executed). Now I REALLY understand why the Death Penalty just a lottery, particularly in Florida. I'm trying to obtain the book to one individual I still hold in touch with in Florida who also knows the inmates and advocates written about in this book.
simple to follow along and explains necessary concepts in colonization, the environment, and social justice. I used this book for a paper and it was an absolute pleasure to read. Shiva is a amazing and compelling writer.