Fighting for Life

Author: S. Josephine Baker
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9781590177075
Release Date: 2013-09-24
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

New York’s Lower East Side was said to be the most densely populated square mile on earth in the 1890s. Health inspectors called the neighborhood “the suicide ward.” Diarrhea epidemics raged each summer, killing thousands of children. Sweatshop babies with smallpox and typhus dozed in garment heaps destined for fashionable shops. Desperate mothers paced the streets to soothe their feverish children and white mourning cloths hung from every building. A third of the children living there died before their fifth birthday. By 1911, the child death rate had fallen sharply and The New York Times hailed the city as the healthiest on earth. In this witty and highly personal autobiography, public health crusader Dr. S. Josephine Baker explains how this transformation was achieved. By the time she retired in 1923, Baker was famous worldwide for saving the lives of 90,000 children. The programs she developed, many still in use today, have saved the lives of millions more. She fought for women’s suffrage, toured Russia in the 1930s, and captured “Typhoid” Mary Mallon, twice. She was also an astute observer of her times, and Fighting for Life is one of the most honest, compassionate memoirs of American medicine ever written.

Author: Χάνια Γιαναγκιχάρα
Publisher: Metaichmio Publications
ISBN: 9786180309669
Release Date: 2016-11-24
Genre: Fiction

Τέσσερις φίλοι και συμφοιτητές μετακομίζουν, μετά την αποφοίτησή τους, στη Νέα Υόρκη για να φτιάξουν τη ζωή τους – άφραγκοι, χαμένοι, με μόνο τους στήριγμα τη φιλία τους και τις φιλοδοξίες τους: Ο ευγενής, ωραίος Γουίλεμ, επίδοξος ηθοποιός· ο Τζέι Μπι, ζωγράφος από το Μπρούκλιν, που προσπαθεί να κατακτήσει τον καλλιτεχνικό κόσμο∙ ο Μάλκολμ, αρχιτέκτονας σε μια σημαντική εταιρεία∙ και ο Τζουντ – ο ιδιοφυής, αινιγματικός Τζουντ. Όπως περνούν οι δεκαετίες, οι σχέσεις τους βαθαίνουν, αλλά και σκοτεινιάζουν, καθώς τις χρωματίζουν ο εθισμός, η επιτυχία, η περηφάνια. Ωστόσο η σπουδαιότερη πρόκληση, συνειδητοποιούν όλοι, είναι ο ίδιος ο Τζουντ, πλέον ένας απίστευτα χαρισματικός δικηγόρος μα και ένας άνθρωπος ολοένα και πιο διαλυμένος, με το σώμα του και τον νου του σημαδεμένα από τους ανείπωτους τρόμους της παιδικής του ηλικίας – κυνηγημένος από τραύματα που φοβάται ότι όχι μόνο δεν θα ξεπεράσει ποτέ, αλλά και θα τον ορίζουν για πάντα. Με πρόζα πλούσια και λαμπρή, η Γιαναγκιχάρα γράφει έναν τραγικό, υπερβατικό ύμνο στην αγάπη, μια αριστοτεχνική απεικόνιση του σπαραγμού, της τυραννίας της μνήμης και των ορίων της ανθρώπινης αντοχής.

Nine Irish Lives

Author: Mark Bailey
Publisher: Algonquin Books
ISBN: 9781616208226
Release Date: 2018-03-06
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

Through the battles they fought, the cases they argued, the novels they wrote, and the lives they touched, these nine Irish men and women not only became American but helped make our nation what it is today. In the spirit of David McCullough’s Brave Companions, this anthology of popular American history presents the stories of nine incredible Irish immigrants as written by nine contemporary Irish Americans. Rosie O’Donnell, for instance, the adoptive mother of five, tells the story of Margaret Haughery, known as “Mother of the Orphans”; filmmaker and activist Michael Moore writes about the original muckraking journalist, Samuel McClure; and celebrated actor Pierce Brosnan writes about silent film director Rex Ingram. Some of the figures profiled are well known, others have stories that are less often told; all are inspiring. Compelling history mixed with moving and personal reflection, this collection of portraits is at once uniquely intimate and surprisingly immediate. More than one in ten Americans claims Irish ancestry and, with its celebrity contributors, Nine Irish Lives will have strong appeal for those readers. It is also, though, a timely portrait of shared humanity. These are stories about immigrants—and in the tales of revolutionaries and visionaries, caretakers and unsung heroes, Nine Irish Lives reminds us of the values and the people that have shaped America.

Waiting for the Barbarians

Author: Daniel Mendelsohn
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9781590176092
Release Date: 2012-10-16
Genre: Literary Criticism

FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD AND THE PEN ART OF THE ESSAY AWARD Over the past decade and a half, Daniel Mendelsohn’s reviews for The New York Review of Books, The New Yorker, and The New York Times Book Review have earned him a reputation as “one of the greatest critics of our time” (Poets & Writers). In Waiting for the Barbarians, he brings together twenty-four of his recent essays—each one glinting with “verve and sparkle,” “acumen and passion”—on a wide range of subjects, from Avatar to the poems of Arthur Rimbaud, from our inexhaustible fascination with the Titanic to Susan Sontag’s Journals. Trained as a classicist, author of two internationally best-selling memoirs, Mendelsohn moves easily from penetrating considerations of the ways in which the classics continue to make themselves felt in contemporary life and letters (Greek myth in the Spider-Man musical, Anne Carson’s translations of Sappho) to trenchant takes on pop spectacles—none more explosively controversial than his dissection of Mad Men. Also gathered here are essays devoted to the art of fiction, from Jonathan Littell’s Holocaust blockbuster The Kindly Ones to forgotten gems like the novels of Theodor Fontane. In a final section, “Private Lives,” prefaced by Mendelsohn’sNew Yorker essay on fake memoirs, he considers the lives and work of writers as disparate as Leo Lerman, Noël Coward, and Jonathan Franzen. Waiting for the Barbarians once again demonstrates that Mendelsohn’s “sweep as a cultural critic is as impressive as his depth.”

Wild Spaces Open Seasons

Author: Kevin Sharp
Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press
ISBN: 9780806157030
Release Date: 2016-10-26
Genre: Art

Wild Spaces, Open Seasons traces the theme of hunting and fishing in American art from the early nineteenth century through World War II. Describing a remarkable group of American paintings and sculpture, the contributors reveal the pervasiveness of the subjects and the fascinating contexts from which they emerged. In one important example after another, the authors demonstrate that representations of hunting and fishing did more than illustrate subsistence activities or diverting pastimes. The portrayal of American hunters and fishers also spoke to American ambitions and priorities. In his introduction, noted outdoorsman and author Stephen J. Bodio surveys the book’s major artists, who range from society painters to naturalists and modernists. Margaret C. Adler then explores how hunting and fishing imagery in American art reflects traditional myths, some rooted in classicism, others in the American appetite for tall tales. Kory W. Rogers, in his discussion of works that valorize the dangers hunters faced pursuing their prey, shows how American artists constructed new rituals at a time when the United States was rapidly transforming from a frontier society into a modern urban nation. Shirley Reece-Hughes looks at depictions of families, pairs, and parties of hunters and fishers and how social bonding reinvigorated American society at a time of social, political, and cultural change. Finally, Adam M. Thomas considers themes of exploration and hunting as integral to conveying the individualism that was a staple of westward expansion. In their depictions of the hunt or the catch, American artists connected a dynamic and developing nation to its past and its future. Through the examination of major works of art, Wild Spaces, Open Seasons brings to light an often-overlooked theme in American painting and sculpture.

The Communist

Author: Guido Morselli
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9781681370798
Release Date: 2017-09-19
Genre: Fiction

A unique political coming of age story, now in English for the first time. An NYRB Classics Original Walter Ferranini has been born and bred a man of the left. His father was a worker and an anarchist; Walter himself is a Communist. In the 1930s, he left Mussolini’s Italy to fight Franco in Spain. After Franco’s victory, he left Spain for exile in the United States. With the end of the war, he returned to Italy to work as a labor organizer and to build a new revolutionary order. Now, in the late 1950s, Walter is a deputy in the Italian parliament. He is not happy about it. Parliamentary proceedings are too boring for words: the Communist Party seems to be filling up with ward heelers, timeservers, and profiteers. For Walter, the political has always taken precedence over the personal, but now there seems to be no refuge for him anywhere. The puritanical party disapproves of his relationship with Nuccia, a tender, quizzical, deeply intelligent editor who is separated but not divorced, while Walter is worried about his health, haunted by his past, and increasingly troubled by knotty questions of both theory and practice. Walter is, always has been, and always will be a Communist, he has no doubt about that, and yet something has changed. Communism no longer explains the life he is living, the future he hoped for, or, perhaps most troubling of all, the life he has led.

The American Writer

Author: Lawrence R. Samuel
Publisher: McFarland
ISBN: 9781476629926
Release Date: 2017-12-08
Genre: History

 The American writer—both real and fictitious, famous and obscure—has traditionally been situated on the margins of society, an outsider looking in. From The Great Gatsby’s Nick Carraway to the millions of bloggers today, writers are generally seen as onlookers documenting the human condition. Yet their own collective story has largely gone untold. Tracing the role of the writer in the United States over the last century, this book describes how those who use language as a creative medium have held a special place in our collective imagination.

Envy

Author: Yuri Olesha
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9781590175415
Release Date: 2012-03-07
Genre: Fiction

A New York Review Books Original One of the delights of Russian literature, a tour de force that has been compared to the best of Nabokov and Bulgakov, Yuri Olesha’s novella Envy brings together cutting social satire, slapstick humor, and a wild visionary streak. Andrei is a model Soviet citizen, a swaggeringly self-satisfied mogul of the food industry who intends to revolutionize modern life with mass-produced sausage. Nikolai is a loser. Finding him drunk in the gutter, Andrei gives him a bed for the night and a job as a gofer. Nikolai takes what he can, but that doesn’t mean he’s grateful. Griping, sulking, grovelingly abject, he despises everything Andrei believes in, even if he envies him his every breath. Producer and sponger, insider and outcast, master and man fight back and forth in the pages of Olesha’s anarchic comedy. It is a contest of wills in which nothing is sure except the incorrigible human heart. Marian Schwartz’s new English translation of Envy brilliantly captures the energy of Olesha’s masterpiece.

Author: Έλενα Φερράντε
Publisher: Patakis
ISBN: 9789601666693
Release Date: 2016-06-02
Genre: Young Adult Fiction

Ένα σύγχρονο αριστούργηµα από την πιο δηµοφιλή Ιταλίδα συγγραφέα της εποχής µας. Η Υπέροχη Φίλη µου, το πρώτο βιβλίο της Τετραλογίας της Νάπολης, είναι η ιστορία της Έλενας και της Λίλα, µια ιστορία που ξεκινά τη δεκαετία του ’50 µε φόντο µια φτωχογειτονιά της Νάπολης. Η συγγραφέας καταδύεται στην περίπλοκη φύση της φιλίας των δύο κοριτσιών που από έφηβες γίνονται γυναίκες, ακολουθώντας βήµα βήµα την εξέλιξη καθεµιάς ξεχωριστά, τον τρόπο που η µία επηρεάζει την άλλη, τα συναισθήµατα που ανά τις δεκαετίες τις βοηθούν να χτίσουν µια ουσιαστική, ακλόνητη σχέση. Με απαράµιλλο στιλ και αψεγάδιαστη, σχολαστική µατιά η Φερράντε σε µια καθηλωτική αφήγηση ξεδιπλώνει µέσα από την ιστορία µιας φιλίας την ιστορία µιας γειτονιάς, µιας πόλης κι εντέλει ενός έθνους που βιώνει κοσµοϊστορικές αλλαγές µε το πέρασµα των δεκαετιών. «Και τελικά το πραγµατικό θέµα της Φερράντε είναι το περιθώριο που έχει ο καθένας από µας, τόσο µεγάλο και τόσο ελάχιστο, να διαµορφώσει ο ίδιος την ύπαρξή του. Κι αυτό το περιθώριο εξετάζει από κάθε του άποψη, πολιτική, προσωπική, υπαρξιακή... Κατά βάθος αυτή η Τετραλογία της Νάπολης θα µπορούσε να ονοµαστεί η τετραλογία της ελευθερίας». Le Monde des Livres «Να διαποτίσεις τη µυθοπλασία µε την αδιάλυτη δύναµη της ζωής, να την κάνεις να είναι όχι απλά λέξεις στο χαρτί αλλά εσωτερική δύναµη, αυτό είναι το µεγαλύτερο επίτευγµα της τέχνης...» Financial Times «Η άγνωστη συγγραφέας ενός διάσηµου αριστουργήµατος... Η Έλενα Φερράντε αναγνωρίζεται σε παγκόσµιο επίπεδο ως µια σπουδαία συγγραφέας της εποχής µας. Κανείς µας όµως δε γνωρίζει την ταυτότητά της και εκείνη είναι αποφασισµένη να µην την αποκαλύψει». The Sunday Times «Ό,τι καλύτερο διάβασα φέτος». Richard Flanagan «Η Φερράντε µιλάει για τις γυναίκες και τη φιλία µε ασύλληπτη δύναµη». Gwyneth Paltrow «Διαβάζοντας τη Φερράντε θυµήθηκα αυτή τη σχεδόν παιδιάστικη έξαψη να διαβάσεις την επόµενη σελίδα, αυτή την αίσθηση ότι τα µάτια σου έχουν ξεκολλήσει από το κεφάλι σου, αυτή τη σκέψη πως ποτέ δεν περίµενες ότι τα βιβλία µπορούν να σου το κάνουν αυτό!» Elizabeth Strout (βραβείο Πούλιτζερ) «Η γραφή της Φερράντε δε γνωρίζει όρια, µπορεί να οδηγήσει την κάθε σκέψη στο ρηξικέλευθο αποτέλεσµα και αντίστοιχα να γυρίσει πίσω στην πιο ακραία της αρχή...» The New Yorker «Ένα αριστούργηµα, πέρα από όρια και είδη». Il Salvagente «Οι γυναίκες της Φερράντε είναι πραγµατικά έργα τέχνης!» El Pais «Φανταστείτε την Τζέιν Όστεν θυµωµένη και θα έχετε µια ιδέα του πόσο εκρηκτικά σπουδαία είναι αυτή η Τετραλογία της Νάπολης!» The Australian

Conquered City

Author: Victor Serge
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9781590173664
Release Date: 2011-01
Genre: Fiction

1919-1920: St. Petersburg, city of the czars, has fallen to the revolution. Camped out in the splendid palaces of the former regime, the new masters of the city seek to cement their control, even as the counter-revolutionary White Army musters its forces. Conquered City, Victor Serge's toughest and most unrelenting narrative, is structured like a detective story, one in which the new political regime seeks to track down and eliminate its enemies-the spies, speculators, and traitors hidden among the exhausted mass of common people. Conquered City is about terror: the Red Terror and the White Terror. But mainly about the Red, about the Communists who have dared to pick up the weapons of power-police, guns, jails, spies, treachery-in the gamble that by wielding them with purity, in a righteous cause, they can put an end to the need for terror, perhaps forever. And yet those who wield these weapons know that they are doomed. Conquered City is their tragedy and testament.

Party Music

Author: Rickey Vincent
Publisher: Chicago Review Press
ISBN: 9781613744956
Release Date: 2013-10-01
Genre: Music

Party Music explores the culture and politics of the Black Power era of the late 1960s, when the rise of a black militant movement also gave rise to a “Black Awakening” in the arts--and especially in music. Here Rickey Vincent, the award-winning author of Funk, explores the relationship of soul music to the Black Power movement from the vantage point of the musicians and black revolutionaries themselves. Party Music introduces readers to the Black Panther's own band, the Lumpen, a group comprised of rank-and-file members of the Oakland, California-based Party. During their year-long tenure, the Lumpen produced hard-driving rhythm-and-blues that asserted the revolutionary ideology of the Black Panthers. Through his rediscovery of the Lumpen, and based on new interviews with Party and band members, Vincent provides an insider's account of black power politics and soul music aesthetics in an original narrative that reveals more detail about the Black Revolution than ever before. Rickey Vincent is the author of Funk: The Music, The People, and the Rhythm of the One, and has written for the Washington Post, American Legacy, and the Los Angeles Review of Books. He teaches at the University of California, Berkeley.

The Glory of the Empire

Author: Jean D'Ormesson
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9781590179666
Release Date: 2016-05-03
Genre: Fiction

The Glory of the Empire is the rich and absorbing history of an extraordinary empire, at one point a rival to Rome. Rulers such as Basil the Great of Onessa, who founded the Empire but whose treacherous ways made him a byword for infamy, and the romantic Alexis the bastard, who dallied in the fleshpots of Egypt, studied Taoism and Buddhism, returned to save the Empire from civil war, and then retired “to learn to die,” come alive in The Glory of the Empire, along with generals, politicians, prophets, scoundrels, and others. Jean d’Ormesson also goes into the daily life of the Empire, its popular customs, and its contribution to the arts and the sciences, which, as he demonstrates, exercised an influence on the world as a whole, from the East to the West, and whose repercussions are still felt today. But it is all fiction, a thought experiment worthy of Jorge Luis Borges, and in the end The Glory of the Empire emerges as a great shimmering mirage, filling us with wonder even as it makes us wonder at the fugitive nature of power and the meaning of history itself.

Fighting Fish

Author: David M. Schwartz
Publisher: Creative Teaching Press
ISBN: 1574715607
Release Date: 1999
Genre: Juvenile Nonfiction

Learn about the life cycle of the fighting fish.

Kaputt

Author: Curzio Malaparte
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 1590171470
Release Date: 2005
Genre: Fiction

Curzio Malaparte was a disaffected supporter of Mussolini with a taste for danger and high living. Sent by an Italian paper during World War II to cover the fighting on the Eastern Front, Malaparte secretly wrote this terrifying report from the abyss, which became an international bestseller when it was published after the war. Telling of the siege of Leningrad, of glittering dinner parties with Nazi leaders, and of trains disgorging bodies in war-devastated Romania, Malaparte paints a picture of humanity at its most depraved. Kaputt is an insider's dispatch from the world of the enemy that is as hypnotically fascinating as it is disturbing.

Poison Penmanship

Author: Jessica Mitford
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 9781590175293
Release Date: 2012-05-09
Genre: Language Arts & Disciplines

Jessica Mitford was a member of one of England’s most legendary families (among her sisters were the novelist Nancy Mitford and the current Duchess of Devonshire) and one of the great muckraking journalists of modern times. Leaving England for America, she pursued a career as an investigative reporter and unrepentant gadfly, publicizing not only the misdeeds of, most famously, the funeral business (The American Way of Death, a bestseller) and the prison business (Kind and Usual Punishment), but also of writing schools and weight-loss programs. Mitford’s diligence, unfailing skepticism, and acid pen made her one of the great chroniclers of the mischief people get up to in the pursuit of profit and the name of good. Poison Penmanship collects seventeen of Mitford’s finest pieces—about everything from crummy spas to network-TV censorship—and fills them out with the story of how she got the scoop and, no less fascinating, how the story developed after publication. The book is a delight to read: few journalists have ever been as funny as Mitford, or as gifted at getting around in those dark, cobwebbed corners where modern America fashions its shiny promises. It’s also an unequaled and necessary manual of the fine art of investigative reporting.