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Monday, June 13, 2005

What I did on my vacation (for the last ten years)

My Summer reading list:
  • The Bible Unearthed: Archaeology's New Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origin of It's Sacred Texts by Israel Finkelstein and Neil Asher Silberman
  • Page Smith's American History series:
    • A New Age Now Begins : A People's History of the American Revolution, V. 1
    • A New Age Now Begins : A People's History of the American Revolution, V. 2
    • The Shaping of America : A People's History of the Young Republic , V. 3
    • The Nation Comes of Age : A People's Hisotry of the Ante-Bellum Years , V. 4
    • Trial by Fire : A People's History of the Civil War and Reconstruction, V. 5
    • The Rise of Industrial America : A People's History of the Post-Reconstruction, V. 6
    • America Enters the World : A People's History of the Progressive Era and World War I, V. 7
    • Redeeming the Time : A People's History of the 1920s and the New Deal, V. 8
  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
  • The Mismeasure of Man by Stephen Jay Gould
  • The Mismeasure of Woman by Carol Tavris

Many of these books I aready have and, since I'm currently sans work, among the few that I don't have the new Harry Potter is the only book on the list that I'll be buying new.

I'm almost fininshed with The Bible Unearthed and I'm about half-way done with volume one of A New Age Now Begins, but I decided to cheat and include them on the list anyway.

And here's a list of books that've been recommended to me but, being broke, I cannot currently afford:

  • Creating Born Criminals by Nicole Hahn Rafter, which was recommended by Mnemosyne
  • Wild Minds by Marc Hauser
  • Demonic Males by Richard Wrangham

If you have any recommendations to add to my "when I have money" list, feel free to let me know.

***

As I've been reading A New Age, the thought occurred to me that most of our country's founding fathers were dyed in the wool geeks. Here's an example. To set the stage, future President John Adams and most of the other members of the Massachusetts delegation to what would later become known as the First Continental Congress are travelling to Philadelphia, stopping in various cities and towns along the way, in this case New York:

New York turned out to be a round of elegant dinners, of meetings and discussions with patriots of all ranks and persuasions. "The Way we have been in," Adams observed ruefully, "of breakfasting, dining, drinking Coffee, etc. about the City is very disagreable on some Accounts...it hinders us from seein the Colledge, the Churches, the Printers Offices and Booksellers Shops, and many other Things which we should choose to see."
A New Age Now Begins, Vol. 1 p. 421-2
So he goes to New York, talks to pretty much everybody who is anybody among the patriot circle, is the guest of honor at numerous parties, and what's his reaction? He complains because he didn't have time to stop by the bookstore. This is a man after my own heart.

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