Alone in America : the stories that matter / Robert A. Ferguson
With more people living alone today than at any time in U.S. history, Ferguson investigates loneliness in American fiction, from its mythological beginnings in Rip Van Winkle to the postmodern terrors of 9/11. At issue is the dark side of a trumpeted American individualism. Ferguson shows that we can learn, from our literature, how to live alone.
Cult pop culture : how the fringe became mainstream / Bob Batchelor, editor
Though not focusing on religious zealots, Batchelor (journalism and mass communication, Kent State U.) applies “cult” in its connotation of someone or something that has a deeply-held or enduring popular following. Volume 1, which includes a timeline since 1900, presents essays analyzing the attraction of cult figures, themes, technology, and genre related to film (e.g., Star Wars) and television (e.g., Oprah, serial killers, reality TV shows).
Schools have everything needed to accomplish great feats via high school sports participation, and now is the time for our educators to be the experts in their field…Crazy-Proofing High School Sports offers real solutions to the real problems hurting high school student athletes.
A young woman in love with a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing; one of his mistresses and her humbly faithful lover—these are the two couples whose story is told in this masterful novel. In a world in which lives are shaped by irrevocable choices and by fortuitous events, a world in which everything occurs but once, existence seems to lose its substance, its weight. Hence, we feel “the unbearable lightness of being” not only as the consequence of our pristine actions but also in the public sphere, and the two inevitably intertwine.
Exorbitant privilege : the rise and fall of the dollar and the future of the international monetary system / Barry Eichengreen
For more than half a century, the U.S. dollar has been not just America’s currency but the world’s. It is used globally by importers, exporters, investors, governments and central banks alike. Nearly three-quarters of all $100 bills circulate outside the United States. The dollar holdings of the Chinese government alone come to more than $1,000 per Chinese resident. This dependence on dollars, by banks, corporations and governments around the world, is a source of strength for the United States. It is, as a critic of U.S. policies once put it, America’s “exorbitant privilege.”
Quack medicine : a history of combating health fraud in twentieth-century America / Eric W. Boyle
Boyle (University of Maryland; National Museum of Health and Medicine) offers an illustrated history of quack medicine in the US and concludes that despite attempts to counter it, questionable medicines and medical services are still as popular as ever. Placing medical quackery in America within a broader social and cultural context, the author examines the roles of various players involved in fighting health fraud in the US, including government agencies, medical groups, journalists, and consumer advocates. The book includes b&w historical photos and illustrations.
In pursuit of the traveling salesman : mathematics at the limits of computation / William J. Cook
What is the shortest possible route for a traveling salesman seeking to visit each city on a list exactly once and return to his city of origin? It sounds simple enough, yet the traveling salesman problem is one of the most intensely studied puzzles in applied mathematics—and it has defied solution to this day. In this book, William Cook takes readers on a mathematical excursion, picking up the salesman’s trail in the 1800s when Irish mathematician W. R. Hamilton first defined the problem, and venturing to the furthest limits of today’s state-of-the-art attempts to solve it.
"A time being is someone who lives in time, and that means you, and me, and every one of us who is, or was, or ever will be." In Tokyo, sixteen-year-old Nao has decided there’s only one escape from her aching loneliness and her classmates’ bullying. Butbefore she ends it all, Nao first plans to document the life of her great grandmother, a Buddhist nun who’s lived more than a century. A diary is Nao’s only solace—and will touch lives in ways she can scarcely imagine.
War play : video games and the future of armed conflict / Corey Mead
How does the U.S. military train its soldiers for new forms of armed conflict, all within the constraints of diminished defense budgets? Increasingly, the answer is cutting-edge video game technology. Corey Mead shows us training sessions where soldiers undertake multiplayer “missions” that test combat skills, develop unit cohesion, and teach cultural awareness. He immerses himself in 3-D battle simulations so convincing that they leave his heart racing. And he shows how the military, which has shaped American education more than any other force over the last century, fuels the adoption of games as learning tools—and recruitment come-ons.