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21. Superheroes And Philosophy: Truth,
$15.30 list($22.50)
22. Mix Tape : The Art of Cassette
$16.32 $14.00 list($24.00)
23. Travels with Barley: A Journey
$49.95 $39.96
24. The Change Handbook: Group Methods
25. Andy Warhol Prints: A Catalogue
$16.47 $13.29 list($24.95)
26. American Mania: When More Is Not
$11.16 $9.30 list($15.95)
27. The Culture of Fear: Why Americans
$109.99 list($35.00)
28. Legacy: Selected Drawings &
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29. Magical Mystery Tours : My Life
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30. Basquiat
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31. The Inner Game of Music
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32. The Art of Peter Max
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33. Rise Up Singing: The Group Singing
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34. Walk On: The Spiritual Journey
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35. The Dharma of Star Wars
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36. Christian Wisdom of the Jedi Masters
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37. Reefer Madness : Sex, Drugs, and
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38. The Art of Robots
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39. SIN-A-RAMA: Sleaze Sex Paperbacks
$81.25 $69.99
40. Sports in Society: Issues and

21. Superheroes And Philosophy: Truth, Justice, And The Socratic Way (Popular Culture and Philosophy)
list price: $17.95
our price: $12.21
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Asin: 0812695739
Catlog: Book (2005-05-10)
Publisher: Open Court Publishing Company
Sales Rank: 44393
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Book Description

The comic book superheroes — Superman, Batman, the Incredible Hulk, the Fantastic Four, X-Men, and many others — have proved to be a powerful and enduring thread in popular culture, a rich source of ideas for moviemakers, novelists, and philosophers. Superheroes and Philosophy brings together 16 leading philosophers and some of the most creative people in the world of comics, from storywriters to editors to critics, to examine the deeper issues that resonate from the hyperbolic narratives and superhuman actions of this heroic world. The comic book narratives of superheroes wrestle with profound and disturbing issues in original ways: the definitions of good and evil, the limits of violence as an efficacious means, the perils of enforcing justice outside the law, the metaphysics of personal identity, and the definition of humanity. The book also features original artwork specially commissioned from some of the most popular of today's comic book artists. ... Read more

22. Mix Tape : The Art of Cassette Culture
list price: $22.50
our price: $15.30
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Asin: 0789311992
Catlog: Book (2005-05-03)
Publisher: Universe
Sales Rank: 602568
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Book Description

Stop. Fast-forward. Pause. Rewind. It has become part of our vocabulary when talking about the momentum of our lives . . . .
Over forty years ago Phillips launched the compact audio cassette at the 1963 Berlin Radio Show and our relationship with music has never been the same. Durable, inexpensive, and portable, the new format was an instant success. By the 1970s, we were voraciously recording music onto blank cassettes. It allowed us to listen to, and, in effect, curate music in a new way. Privately. Mix tapes let us become our own DJs, creating mixes for friends, lovers, and family, for parties and road trips.
Artist and musician Thurston Moore looks back at the plastic gadget that first let us make our own compilations. Over eighty home tapers, including artists, musicians, actors, writers, directors, comediennes, talk show hosts, and, of course, record store employees were invited to tell the stories behind their mixes. From the Romantic Tape, to the Break-up Tape, the Road Trip Tape, to the "Indoctrination" Tape-the art and text that emerged was of the mix cassette as a new way of re-sequencing music to make sense of our most stubbornly inexpressible feelings-a way of explaining ourselves to someone else, or to ourselves.
... Read more

23. Travels with Barley: A Journey Through Beer Culture in America
by Ken Wells
list price: $24.00
our price: $16.32
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Asin: 074323278X
Catlog: Book (2004-10-06)
Publisher: Free Press
Sales Rank: 823
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24. The Change Handbook: Group Methods for Shaping the Future
by Peggy Holman, Tom Devane
list price: $49.95
our price: $49.95
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Asin: 1576750582
Catlog: Book (1999-06-01)
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers
Sales Rank: 223991
Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

When people in an organization or community get together and work for change, the result can be powerful. But managing group dynamics is often difficult. This unique guide showcases 18 tried-and-true methods for facilitating change in a group situation, each explained by an expert who developed or elaborated the method. The book explains what each method is rather than how to do it, with extensive suggestions for further reading. ... Read more

Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars Insightful!
This handbook of change is a must-have for any executive, simply as a primer in the language spoken by consultants. Read this book and become instantly familiar with the latest, most successful, and even the trendiest theories of change management. The editors have evaluated 18 leading change methods, as applied and tested by some of the largest corporations in the United States. They group the change methods by functional categories, making it easier for readers to go directly to the method that applies to their particular problem. Another bonus: The leading practitioners in the field write the change method chapters, bringing a unique depth of perspective. The editors also have written several excellent chapters on the nature of change. An extraordinary comparative matrix - worth the price of the book by itself - is included in the "Afterword." We [...] recommend this book to executives, managers, change agents, human resources professionals and students.

5-0 out of 5 stars A practical JIT source for comparing change processes
I'm now recommending two must-have books to internal change agents with whom I interact...and this is one of them. Collaborative change (which is what this book is all about) is the only way to sustain meaningful, long-lasting change in our communities and organizations. This book provides a snapshot for 18 of the more important change methodologies currently being used.

I got very excited over the fold-out "comparative matrix" that provides a snapshot for the 3 types of change methods that are considered (planning, structuring and adaptable).

The book is easy to navigate; references are plentiful and easy to use; comparisons, even among change processes with which I'm not so familiar, are easy to understand and capture.

This book is a must for anyone serious about initiating and sustaining organizational and community change.

3-0 out of 5 stars Too general
The book provides general information about different organizational intervention methods. Since most of the writers in this book provide only introductory information and market their method in a similar way, you can't really see much difference between them. If you want to learn how to work with any of those techniques, I suggest you buy the book that focuses on your area of interest.

3-0 out of 5 stars a good survey of change tools
This book is ok - I do this kind of work for a living so there was nothing new in it for me and I returned it - but for those needing an intro to change approaches/techniques this is a good start. My problem with books like this is that they tell you the tools and the how tos to some extent but the real value in engaging in change efforts is knowing when/where the alligator in the swamp is going to pop up and bite you. They don't lay out any lessons learned or things to watch out for so for the unsuspecting they may engage in a change effort and have it fail due to poor delivery etc.

4-0 out of 5 stars A good place to start for doing large scale interventions
When you want to change a company and you do this top-down, using a cascade system in which higher levels of your organisation change the lower levels, you are in for a long change process. For instance, specialists will tell you it can take 7 years before you really change a company's culture. No wonder people like Art Kleiner (co-author of "The Dance of Change") will warn you that up to 70% of your change efforts will fail. The solution comes from taking a more systemic approach, involving as much people of the organisation at once as possible. These kinds of large scale interventions often do wonders if the management is willing to work in a more participative manner. Some methods are more directed to specific change goals, whether it is to set a new direction for your organisation or redefining working relationships (re-organising the buisiness); other methods are more adaptable.

This book will help you find your way in the world of large scale interventions. The 18 proven group methods each have a chapter, written by originators and/or foremost practitioners. Each method-chapter includes a case, the explanation of the methodology, the conditions to success, the theoretical basis, etc. In the back of the book you'll find a table describing all 18 methods (explaining how many people can be involved, how lang the change process takes, how it impacts the organisation, etc.). Once you have found which method fits your situation, you'll find references to more specific books explaining a particular method. Another book painting the big picture as well is Barbara Bunker's "Large Scale Interventions".

I recommend the book as a place to start, if you are prepared to treat your organisation as having more EQ than each of the individuals.

Patrick E.C. Merlevede -- co-author of 7 Steps to Emotional Intelligence

I also submitted a "listmania" list entitled "Systemic Large Group Interventions" in which you'll find more references on this topic. ... Read more

25. Andy Warhol Prints: A Catalogue Raisonne 1962-1987
by Frayda Feldman, Jorg Schellman, Claudia Defendi, Jorg Schellmann, Andy Warhol
list price: $85.00
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Asin: 1881616908
Catlog: Book (1997-10-01)
Publisher: D.A.P./Feldman Fine Arts/Andy Warhol Foundati
Sales Rank: 446150
Average Customer Review: 4.75 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars Directed at the expert, fine for the fan, too!
I would like to add to the reviews below that this book is a pleasure to hold and to view because it is so well made. If there is any 'art' book that should be made for posterity it is the catalog raisonne of an artist. In this instance, the publisher has done the artist's audience a real service for, the book is beautifully printed and bound in Italy by Amilcare Pizzi; Italy seeming to have usurped Switzerland's place as the world's premier art book printer. The pages are thick and glossy and the reproduction is top notch.
For those of you who are unaware of what a catalog raisonne is, it is meant to be a compilation and historical record of an artist's work that documents execution date, medium, size of image or plate, size of edition if a print, whether signed or unsigned, etc. This information is used by artists, historians, collectors and dealers to attribute a piece of art and place it in the artist's oevre, and of course to aid in placing relative value on it. Here too, the archivists, publisher, and editor have done a fine job of documenting the relevant facts. This is especially important in the case of Warhol who was a serial printer, sometimes to the point of intentional promiscuity. So, the fact that wherever possible relevant information is provided speaks volumes about the prodigious effort that must have gone into this undertaking. I rate this book four stars because I fear that since this is the third edition, there will be yet another edition published that renders this one obsolete. I understand this is precisely because Warhol was an inprecise documentarian, when he chose to do so at all, but I don't relish having to purchase another high dollar, though valuable book that is only slightly different from the one I already own. For people who don't give a darn, the book rates a five.

5-0 out of 5 stars Andy Warhol Prints
This 3rd edition of Andy Warhol Prints gives much information to someone who is interested in the various published and unpublished works which Warhol created. In addition to providing color photographs of the prints, the book gives details about the edition size and characteristics of each individual portfolio. This book will be quite useful for the Warhol fan, art students, as well as collectors of Warhol's work. It is the most definitive book of his prints available.

5-0 out of 5 stars Definitive Guide to Warhol
Prints, proofs, paintings -- everything is here, plus essays that explicate and set context.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best catalog of Andy's Prints
This gem of a book gets into all the details of Warhol's print making. See source images as well as artist's and printer's proofs. A must for any collector wanting to explore Warhol's work as well as a real eye opener as to how busy this man really kept himself. ... Read more

26. American Mania: When More Is Not Enough
by Peter C. Whybrow
list price: $24.95
our price: $16.47
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Asin: 0393059944
Catlog: Book (2005-01-30)
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Sales Rank: 7248
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

A doctor's bold analysis of the cultural disease that afflicts us all.

In this startling analysis of our prosperous American society, renowned psychiatrist Peter Whybrow reveals why as a nation of acquisitive migrants our insatiable quest for more now threatens our health and happiness.

Whybrow describes an affluence in America that far outstrips our need and a rampant greed spawning the addictions of consumer culture—food, money, and technology. Citing the alarming statistics of obesity, depression, and panic disorders, Whybrow alerts us to a behavior that is now testing the limits of our ancestral biology—in mind and body—and threatens to erode the very foundations of our community. Drawing upon detailed case studies, Whybrow offers compassionate guidance and a novel vantage point from which to understand some of the most pressing social and medical issues of our time. This provocative volume, grounded in science and philosophy, calls for collective action in refocusing our pursuit of happiness and enhancing America's prosperity. ... Read more

Reviews (9)

4-0 out of 5 stars american mania reviewed
Whybrow's book does a good job of discusssing free market economies and globalization.There are several references to Adam Smith and Alexis de Tocqueville's classic book "democracy in America." He feels that Smith would be upset with our current situation.For instance, Whybrow points out that Smith felt that potential downfalls of free markets, such as greed, would be kept in check by a desire to be accepted in the local community.Now that we live in the "global village," the checks on self-centered behaviors have disappeared.Early in the book, Whybrow discusses the biological reasons why people and specifically Americans are most vulnerable to globalization and a consumer based society.Our ancient ancestors lived through extreme periods of feast and famine.These conditions bread the tendency to over consume when the recourses were available.Now we live in a continual state of abundance.Americans are unique because they are a collection of adventurous, risk taking migrants.Most all of our families have only been in America for a few generations.It obviously takes a certain type of person to leave their country in hopes of a better life.Whybrow speaks of the brain chemistry that is present in these individuals.Levels of seretonin, dopamine and the numbers of certain receptors that can characterize personality.These characteristics can explain why we work harder, have more debt, and save less than anyone else in the world.Personally, I feel he makes good points, but neglects the effects of television and advertising.Whybrow focuses the later part of the book on the consequencies in this type of lifestye, which is not suited to our anatomy.Less time with family members and friends as well as a lack of exercise and health problems.He concludes that there is no changing the "Fast New World," but there is hope to live a healthy life outside work.The key is to set limits and make the most of your time, for it is a precious commodity.

3-0 out of 5 stars Pleasure seeking- and its boundaries
The thesis of Whybrow's book is one that rings true, "In our relentless pursuit of happiness, we have overshot the target and spawned a manic society with an insatiable appetite for more."He does a great job of clearly identifying the problem as he sets down an indictment of American society, suggesting America's supercharged free-market capitalism shackles us to a treadmill of overconsumption, fraying the family and leaving us anxious, alienated and overweight.

In attempting to diagnose the 'why' behind the 'what', Whybrow suggests "the dopamine reward systems of the brain are... hijacked, and genes are to blame: programmed to crave material rewards on the austere savanna, they go bananas in an economy of superabundance.Americans are particularly susceptible because they are descended from immigrants with a higher frequency of the "exploratory and novelty-seeking D4-7 allele" in the dopamine receptor system, which predisposes them to impulsivity and addiction."

I'm not convinced about this.America is too big a melting pot for such a seemingly broad-sweeping, all-inclusive answer.Furthermore, I question the science behind the assertion.

However, I believe he's spot on when he writes, "The mind is prone to addiction," Whybrow claims, "Everybody is capable of becoming addicted to something - wine, sex, food, exercise, the very pursuit of happiness.Paradoxically, freedom without restraint is enervating, not liberating. There's a difference between pleasure and happiness; happiness depends on limits."'

Here is the greatest contribution of the book.His statement is something which is unpopular, and at the same time corresponds with the human condition."Happiness depends on limits."This is where I believe Whybrow breaks through, but at the same time leaves the reader asking for more.Where are those limits to be placed?What functions in society should determine limits?Are boundaries objective - applying to all people, in all times, and in all places?Do they move from individual to individual?Does God exist?If so, does His will/perspective determine where the boundaries of the creation are set?These are the questions I wish Whybrow had explored in order to make this book so much more.

5-0 out of 5 stars Why Fulfillment Pales Next to Excitement
This is a brilliant synthesis of why satifaction is a distant second to gratification and why fulfillment pales next to excitement.It deserves to be read by a much larger audience than those who will likely read it.In fact those who will read it are the ones who least need to read it; those who should read it are too busy living the lives the Whybrow has described.If he writes an equally compelling and convincing sequel to this work on how getting more, sooner causes you to end up with less, later; Whybrow's thesis might make its way to the people who really need to take it to heart.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Extraordinary and Important Book for our Time
In these troubling days of American narcissism and self-perceived supremacy, the charge of "anti-Americanism" has gone to such laughably ridiculous lengths ("Freedom Fries") that it's no surprise that such a charge would be slung toward this book and its author for daring to scientifically,psychologically -- and yes, morally and socially -- question the current status quo.

That the CITIZENS of this great nation-experiment called America were long ago renamed and reclassified as mere CONSUMERS, and by the corporate culture that now controls every facet of our lives and well being-- to ME, that is what is TRULY "anti-American," my friend. Too many of us have unthinkingly, willingly accepted it, despite the dysfunctional, personal results (obesity, anxiety, depression, etc.) that are outlined in this book.It appears that we have adapted our definition of "the pursuit of happiness" toward working our self-centered butts off, no matter the personal costs of physical or mental health, so that we can "shop till we drop" and "accumulate" -- and all the while becoming isolated from family, neighbors and community -- the very social fabric that once defined the substance and strength of this great nation.

Having rejected the current model some time ago, refocusing and recommitting my life toward active involvement in the social and community relationships that have redefined "happiness and success" for me, this book simply resonates with reality and truth.Further, and most importantly, it not only explains why, as descendants and members of America's "immigrant culture," we are predisposed to the "addiction to more" that once held me in its grip, but it proposes the very cure I discovered through my own agonized searching -- a recommitment and active involvement in neighbor/community relationships.

Dr. Whybrow states, "Ironically, the same tools and technologies that have enabled America to achieve Adam Smith's `universal opulence' have also compromised the social anchors that the old philosopher took for granted."

Yes, Adam Smith, the god of free market capitalism, wrote about more than "Wealth of Nations" -- and in fact, that entire volume presupposed a continued structure, membership, and concern with the COMMUNITY ENTITY.

" `The man whom we naturally love the most,' Smith wrote in The Theory of Moral Sentiments - the book that established his reputation as a thinker - `is he who joins to...his own original and selfish feelings, the most exquisite sensibility...and sympathetic feelings of others'."

The very fact that Adam Smith's name is more easily and closely associated with "Wealth of Nations" than with "The Theory of Moral Sentiments" is a telling indictment of our current culture.That we might, everyone, re-read "Moral Sentiments" followed by an equally careful read of "American Mania"...

"No man is an island unto himself" are words whose proof we are now living.

For those of you who are uncomfortable, but can't put your finger on "why," I cannot recommend this book highly enough.

5-0 out of 5 stars An important and thought-provoking Zeitgeist book!
This is a warning-shot tome such as Rachel Carson's "Silent Spring," Christopher Lasch's "The Culture of Narcissism" and Jonathan Schell's "The Fate of the Earth." It articulates what many of us have been thinking (and worrying) about, and it has the potential to shake us up and change the way we look at ourselves, how we live, and the kind of crazy, fast-paced world we've created. ... Read more

27. The Culture of Fear: Why Americans Are Afraid of the Wrong Things
by Barry Glassner
list price: $15.95
our price: $11.16
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Asin: 0465014909
Catlog: Book (2000-05)
Publisher: Basic Books
Sales Rank: 3999
Average Customer Review: 3.82 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In late 2002, Barry Glassner appeared in Michael Moore's Academy Award-winning movie, Bowling for Columbine, to discuss The Culture of Fear. The reaction to Glassner's appearance, and the message of his book, were overwhelming.

As Glassner describes, the American public remains fascinated by the specter of fear in their lives. Be it the proverbial dark-faced bogeyman, or a more recent epidemic of child snatchings, Americans allow their lives to be affected by a perceived and recurrent onslaught of tragedy, death, and fear.

A national bestseller, The Culture of Fear explains why Americans are afraid, exposing the people and organizations that manipulate our perceptions and profit off our anxieties: politicians who attempt to win elections by heightening concerns about drug use and crime; advocacy groups that raise money by exaggerating the prevalence of particular diseases; and finally and perhaps most perniciously, the media that peddle new scares each week in desperate attempts to garner ratings.

Written in a vivid, entertaining style, The Culture of Fear does more than debunk prevalent myths of impending doom, it also asks us to reconsider our participation in the national charade of fear and suspicion which, according to Glassner, is eroding the trust necessary to truly ensure safety in the public square. ... Read more

Reviews (127)

5-0 out of 5 stars look askance at major media
Glassner took 5 years off from teaching sociology at USC to write "Culture of Fear." It certainly shows. This book is a meticulously-footnoted indictment of mass media's distortion of reality. Among the things that Glassner skewers is the media's portrayal of teen moms & young black men as destroyers of American society, road rage, plane crashes, & health woes related to breast implants. The basic premises that Glassner covers are these:

1) Mass media creates panics & hysterias from a few isolated incidents. 2) Anecdotal evidence takes the place of hard scientific proof. 3) The experts that the media trots out to make comments really don't have the credentials to be considered an expert. 4) Entire categories of people are christened as "innately dangerous" (like the aforementioned teen moms and young black men)

Sometimes Glassner's tone towards media is very snide, which may turn the reader off. Nonetheless, I came away with a new distrust of nightly news magazines, the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, and others. Glassner goes for breadth rather than depth; many of the topics that he covered could be books in their own right. If you lean towards the Christian Conservative side, you won't like this book. Same goes for 2nd Amendment proponents, some Republicans and Libertarians.

4-0 out of 5 stars Well researched and even more relevent now
In the course of reading Barry Glassner's "The Culture of Fear," I was surprised that Glassner took a more balanced view than I had at first expected. After being featured in left-wing muckracker, Michael Moore's latest film, "Bowling for Columbine," I had assumed Glassner, too, had produced a one-sided liberal rant about the corporate-controlled media interests. I was wrong.

While some of Glassner's conclusions may be questionable, like his statements without clear evidence that the availability of guns are almost entirely to blame for the nation's violence, much of his book is filled with example-after-example of familiar media-propagated scares of the 1990s along with well-researched statistics to debunk the myths. After reading the book, the pattern became clear of how the media spins its stories to make them deliberately misleading in order to sell fear and keep viewers and readers plugged in. I believe this educational experience has made me a more savvy and skeptical consumer of the news.

While Glassner's primary target in "The Culture of Fear" is the media, other groups are also shamed along the way (and they aren't all conservatives, either!) For instance, he spends a fair amount of time accusing feminists of propagating the silicone breast implant scares for symbolic gains even as study-after-study, some very large, involving tens of thousands of women showed no increased evidence of medical problems due to the implants.

One trend that I found amusing in many of the scares is that genuine experts are often ignored in the propagation of the fears. When genuine experts are consulted and disagree with the media's spin, their rational hard-facts explanations are often dismissed with a brush of the hand from the interviewer and followed by a, "but what about all the children?" or "but you can't deny people are suffering?" when there may be no connection between the suffering and the purported cause or the chances of the threat occurring being several times less likely than being struck by lightning. Instead, for airline safety stories, we rely on "seasoned traveler" Joe Blow, as if by riding an airplane a couple times a month Joe is an expert or we rely on college student and self-proclaimed researcher, Marty Rimm, for all that is known about Cyberporn and our children's exposure to it. (Rimm achieved earlier fame by manipulating the media in high school with a trumped-up scare of teenagers spending time in New Jersey casinos. Later debunked, you'd think the media would be more skeptical of him when he applied his manipulation tactics again.) The pattern is similar: when reporters are trying to propagate a scare, they find whomever they can to agree with their pre-decided point-of-view, not matter their dubious qualifications, and ignore anyone who casts doubt on the sensationalized arguments, regardless of their authority.

Yes, I am sure there are conclusions within the book that will make conservatives irate, like the observation that it is poverty that causes crime, not race or crack, but it is interesting to find out that in an era when crime rates were dropping, coverage of crime increased 600%, thus creating an impression on the public that crime is out of control. And, no, things aren't any worse now than they were before...a lot of bad things happened in the past, too, like kids killing kids, but it is the media coverage, not the trend that is growing.

Overall, it is a good read and well-documented. Most of the spin is transparent enough to separate it from the interesting factual data contained within it. If you are living in fear of terrorism or any of the other scare-du-jour, this book is definitely worth a read.

1-0 out of 5 stars Be Careful, Junk Science
The author obviously has an agenda to protect Hollywood. Ill bet he lives in an upscale neighboorhood where all the police have to worry about are cats in trees. He tries to convince the reader that violence in the USA is because of the News. He steers you away from vulgar RAP music, the Gangsta culture, senseless violent movies, schools that are purposely dumbing down kids and the glorification by the media of alternate lifestyles, which are designed to weaken the family structure thus producing more crime. I recommend Four Reasons for the Elimination of Television by Jerry Mander, it is much more objective.

5-0 out of 5 stars For anyone who wishes that the media would just go away.
I first became interested in this book through the movie "Bowling for Columbine" by Michael Moore. The movie expands on the concept of the book: America has become a culture that's afraid of its own shadow. We've created diseases, epidemics, criminals, and escalating crime rates in our imaginations that the media has gladly expounded upon in order to gain profits.

Barry Glassner does an excellent job of taking false statistics and exaggerated television reports and exposing them for what they really are: fraudulent mediums to increase profits and to increase control over American mindsets.

One thing that Michael Moore and Barry Glassner do not have in common is this: Barry Glassner doesn't seem to be making an attempt to blatantly manipulate his audience. Glassner did a thorough investigation and covered all areas of his subject, finding a plethora of information to support his thesis rather than a few mere tidbits. His research was well-founded and his argument is both convincing and trustworthy. I can't say the same for all of Michael Moore's work.

A must-read.

(Just a side note: For as much as I hate the media, I find it interesting that the only way I became aware of this book was actually through the media - i.e. Michael Moore's movie "Bowling for Columbine." Moore used the media in order to tell his audience that the media is the reason that they're so afraid of everything. Don't you just love irony?)

1-0 out of 5 stars Down for a Far Left, Us Vs, Them Diatribe? Game On!!!
It's ironic. The crux of this book is supposed to be that the media is misleading the masses for their own sinister purposes.

And here it is that I was misled into believing that was really what the book was about for the author's own sinsiter purposes. The moral is never trust the presentation of a book, even a book which encourages you to distrust.

What I got instead were far left tamtrums about conservative right wing oppression.

Apparently, I was astonished to learn, if there were no handguns, no one would die. Ever. The evil that is the handgun is all that stands between this miserable society and utopia. But I digress.

What could have been a fascinating study about the distortion of information, in the book and now in this review, instead became a thinly veiled Us Vs. Them manifesto.

Any of you leftists out there feel free to click no, under "Was this review helpful to you?". ... Read more

28. Legacy: Selected Drawings & Paintings by Frank Frazetta
by Frank Frazetta, Cathy Fenner, Arnie Fenner
list price: $35.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1887424490
Catlog: Book (1999-11-01)
Publisher: Underwood Books
Sales Rank: 183306
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Frank Frazetta's paintings and illustrations have set the standard for fantasy artists for the past 50 years. This collection focuses on his influence in a variety of media and genres and on his place in 20th century art history. Coedited by Hugo Award-winning editor Arnie Fenner, it includes many of Frazetta's most memorable paintings as well as revised and previously unpublished works. The art is accompanied by the artist's own observations and commentary by a number of his contemporaries. ... Read more

Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars A fine collection of fantastic images
"Legacy: Selected Drawings & Paintings by Frank Frazetta" brings together many examples from the career of this distinctive artist. The book has been edited by Arnie Fenner and Cathy Fenner, and includes a foreword by Danton Burroughs.

"Legacy" gives examples of Frazetta's covers for books, magazines, and comic books, as well as movie posters and even comedy album covers. Many memorable characters from pop culture are depicted: King Kong, Dracula, Tarzan, etc. I especially liked the illustrations from Edgar Rice Burroughs' Mars books, with their six-limbed Martian apes and tusked, green-skinned warriors.

Some of Frazetta's illustrations are haunting, even melancholy, and others are exciting and action-packed. A sorcerer summoning a demon, a scuba diver facing a sea monster, and of course, voluptuous maidens will be found in this book. In some cases, alternate versions of the same commission are given (making this book especially useful for art students and cultural historians). I recommend this book to those interested in the visual art of the sci-fi, fantasy, and adventure genres.

5-0 out of 5 stars Comics emphasis, plus more famous paintings. Whoa!
This is book 2 of a trilogy. This one seems to have more emphasis on his comic book and comic strip work, than what appears in the other two books of the trilogy, "Icon" and "Testament." This one includes an 8-page romance comic book story by Frank, from 1952.

There are also plenty more Tarzan/Burroughs/John Carter of Mars works, and terrific paintings of Savage Pellucidar.

Frank's work for Warren magazines, like Eerie, Creepy, and Vampirella get shown and discussed in this book (and also in the other two books of this series).

All of the different eras and decades of Frank's life and career are discussed and shown, in all three books, but always with different paintings, drawings, personal photos, and different commentary by different friends and business associates.

I would recommend starting with "Icon" if you're new to Frazetta's work, but "Legacy" is a close second, containing the works that he is best known for. "Testament" has a focus on unpublished, never before seen work.

One thing that is surprising in all three of these books is seeing how Frazetta would often paint over his paintings, to improve them and change major elements, after they were originally published. So, many of his paintings look different than the way they were printed on paperback covers in the 1960's and '70's.

I am very pleased with all three of these books, but "Legacy" is my favorite of the three, if I really had to choose.

5-0 out of 5 stars The end of an era
Frank Frazetta is a once in an era painter. He was as much an inspiration to my own large scale figure art as was Michaelangelo. This book is brimming with lush and lavish color reproductions. Frazetta, a true natural and the father of powerful and darkly and richly, colorful, anatomically creative, fantasy art. He has been imitated by dozenz, surpassed by none of them. One would have to go back to the Renaissance to find anyone more free, comfortable and creative in use of anatomy and composition. He would hold his own with the great painters of the past 700 years. This is a great book for artists and art lovers. I bought several for my grandchildren, it will be a valuable collectible in 5-10 years.

5-0 out of 5 stars Frank Frazetta is leaving a Legacy
I bought the book ICON at the same time I bought this book. LEGACY has a slightly different tone than the ICON book. It is a wonderful tone and in complete harmony with the other book. It's kind of like two tubes on a wind chime. I use this analogy in hopes that more chimes, I mean books will come along to complete the symphony.

The ink sketches are great too. I'm partial to the full color oil paintings. What colors, what force, what passion jumps from the pages of this book. These Frazetta books are not only a legacy to the artist but to art in our culture. Imagine Frank painting in the same studio as say... N.C. Wyeth; or even Hal Foster of Prince Valiant fame. I wonder how each artist would influence the other. I bet Mr. Frazetta would set the tone.

Once again, you can't go wrong buying this book. To read more remarks about the Frazetta books, please see my review of the book ICON.

5-0 out of 5 stars A thing of beauty...
I'm a Frazetta fan, and knew before hand that I would love this book. However, I was surprised and amused to discover so much about the artist's personality, how he describes his love & respect for women, etc...

There's also a great painting of his wife, without (obviously) any of the violence & eroticism that Frazetta is mostly known for. It's just a sweet, beautiful painting of a nice looking, every day person... Very interesting... ... Read more

29. Magical Mystery Tours : My Life with the Beatles
by Tony Bramwell, Rosemary Kingsland
list price: $24.95
our price: $16.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 031233043X
Catlog: Book (2005-04-01)
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books
Sales Rank: 4018
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"If you want to know anything about the Beatles, ask Tony Bramwell. He remembers more than I do."- Sir Paul McCartney to Donovan in a January 2002 interview

Tony Bramwell's remarkable life began in a postwar Liverpool suburb, where he was childhood friends with three of the Beatles long before they were famous. And by the time he caught up with George Harrison on the top of a bus going to check out "The Beatles, direct from Hamburg"--one of whom George turned out to be--Tony was well on his way to staying by them for every step of their meteoric rise.

If anything needed taking care of, Tony Bramwell was the man the Beatles called, the man they knew they could trust. His story has been sought after for years, and now, here it is, full of untold stories and detailing with an insider's shrewd eye the Apple empire's incomparable rise, Brian Epstein's frolics, Ken Kesey's Merry Pranksters, Phil Spector's eccentric behavior, and new stories about Yoko Ono, the Stones, and the life--his life.

From developing the first Beatle music videos to heading Apple Films, and from riding bikes and trading records with George Harrison to working and partying with everyone from the Beatles to Hendrix, Ray Charles, and The Who, Tony's life really did (and does) encompass a who's who of rock.

His story reveals fresh insights into the Beatles' childhoods and families, their early recordings and songwriting, the politics at Apple, and Yoko's pursuit of John and her growing influence over the Beatles' lives. And it uncovers new information about the Shea Stadium concert footage, John Lennon's late-night "escapes," and more. From the Cavern Club to the rooftop concert, from the first number one to the last, and from scraps of song lyrics to the discovery of the famous Mr. Kite circus poster, Tony Bramwell really did see it all.

Conversational, direct, and honest, the ultimate Beatles insider finally shares his own version of the frantic and glorious ascent of four boys from Liverpool lads to rock and roll kings.
... Read more

Reviews (8)

2-0 out of 5 stars Really?!!
First-hand stories of legends (living or not) from half a century ago are usually just that: stories. I'm sure most of them are true, but they don't have to be to sell books. And who's memory is that good, or has not been diluted or rearranged many times during one's life, to be able to note specifics of conversations or events pertaining to somebody else?

We all know that Yoko was the black widow that ate the Beatles heart, but we also should know that John desperately needed a "mommy" figure because he lost his mother twice as a child. People have been alot more screwed up from alot less trauma.

It is also been well known for quite a while that the Beatles re-recorded parts of the Shea Stadium concert soundtrack. Mark Lewisohn also details this (secret? Come on!) episode in The Complete Beatles Chronicles, although with plenty of inaccuracies as well. There are many bootleg copies of the concert, some with the original Shea audio, and some with the re-dubbed audio, and it's fairly easy to tell which is which, once you've seen it a few times. And hardly everything was touched-up anyway. Many of the original vocals remained with some of the instruments re-dubbed on a given track, but some songs were never touched at all. I guess it came as a shock to me, when I first saw the "Rain" video on Ed Sullivan, that they weren't really singing or playing; just miming, but I'm not 10 years old anymore, and they didn't invent lip-syncing, either.

So, I guess my point is that even historical documents often bear false information, so don't take somebody's "I was there" book as Gospel. It is, after all, just entertainment!

4-0 out of 5 stars One Big Suprise-true or false?
This is an enjoyable romp thru the Beatles history marred only by some suprising inaccuricies.They can mostly be overlooked as so much time has passed and a lot of alcohol has gone over the dam since then.

HOWEVER-there is a claim made in the book that I have never heard before and am really wondering about.Bramwell states the entire Shea Stadium concert of 1965 was re-recorded in the studio and dubbed onto the film shown on CBS the following year.With the exception of "Act Naturally", the studio version of which is used in the film, it appears the Beatles are playing and singing live. Has anyone heard of this, or has it been confirmed thru another source?Just wondering.

One last thought.This book is not likely to make Yoko Ono's end of the year top ten list.She has to be one of the most annoying people of the last century.What the hell was John Lennon thinking?

5-0 out of 5 stars Rare Gem of a Beatle Book - Advanced Beatle History
I love this book.This is a refreshing Beatle biography, from the standpoint of someone who literally grew up with the Beatles and socialized with them from boyhood.A gifted raconteur, Bramwell draws readers into a "sense" of each Beatle as a boy; what it was like to have George Harrison have dinner at your table; to witness George pulling a very dangerous stunt as a boy and being warned about John's questionable influence on his peers.

Bramwell does a stellar job of portraying a part of musical/artistic/cultural history that will no doubt delight inveterate Beatle fans, but attract the attention of those either becoming familiar with the Beatles or who have an interest in history in general.This book is really geared for all ranging from the "advanced" Beatle fan; that is, one who has a strong background in Beatle knowledge to people wanting to learn more about them and bring them to a high level of Beatle information.

This inveterate, avid Beatles' fan gives this work a hearty endorsement and a yeah, yeah, yeah!

3-0 out of 5 stars Hatred of Yoko Spoils What Could Have Been Something Special
Mr. Bramwell really did know the Beatles in Liverpool and the beginning sections of this book are excellent.Unfortunately Mr. Bramwell's blinding hatred of Yoko Ono really spoils the latter half.Mr. Bramwell puts an anti-Yoko, pro-Paul statement on practically every page and and some of his ommissions and misstatements are really egregious. Once Yoko enters the picture, Paul can do no wrong, and John's contributions are constantly minimized. Perhaps Yoko really was as loathsome to Mr. Bramwell as he claims when he worked for Apple.But his description of the complex Paul/John/Yoko dynamic is simply too vitrolic to be taken seriously.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good insider's view of the Beatles
Tony Bramwell, assisted by Rosemary Kingsland, writes a commendable overview of his years with the Beatles.Bramwell was the "go to" guy when members of the band or their management needed something done.

His early years with the group were the most interesting to me.He makes the reader feel that they are along for the ride when Tony and the group go on an exhausting van trip across England.The reader can tagalong as Tony assists John in escaping suburban imprisonment and embarking on a drunken night on the town in swingin' '60's London.

Bramwell is affecting when describing the trials and tribulations of Brian Epstein, the genius who made the Beatles "bigger than Elvis," but who succumbed to his own inner demons.

Yoko Ono is portrayed as the crazed "stalker" who calculatingly seduces John and evetually lures his interests away from the group.Sadly, Tony's account of her calculated pursuit of the vulnerable Lennon rings tragically true.

The reason I didn't give the book five stars is due to its occasional lapse in historical accuracy and misspellings.Bela Lugosi, who is described as a friend and dinner guest of Phil Spector, died in 1956, two years before Spector even wrote his first number one hit, "To Know Him is to Love Him."Bryan Ferry is rechristened "Brian" Ferry.

Still, overall, I recommend Tony Bramwell's book to all Beatles fans.Reading the book is like sitting in a cozy pub with a man who was one of the Beatles' closet friends and confidantes. ... Read more

30. Basquiat
by Marc Mayer
list price: $45.00
our price: $29.70
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 185894287X
Catlog: Book (2005-03-30)
Publisher: Merrell Holberton
Sales Rank: 526656
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31. The Inner Game of Music
list price: $23.95
our price: $16.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385231261
Catlog: Book (1986-02-21)
Publisher: Doubleday
Sales Rank: 5675
Average Customer Review: 4.71 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

By the best-selling co-author of Inner Tennis, here's a book designed to helpmusicians overcome obstacles, help improveconcentration, and reduce nervousness, allowing them toreach new levels of performing excellence andmusical artistry. ... Read more

Reviews (17)

4-0 out of 5 stars A book for all musicians
There's a lot to like about this book, including the specific techniques used to get past mental obstacles, so musicians can play better and enjoy their playing more. I also enjoyed the encouraging tone it takes with the reader. The authors give you the sense that anyone can make music.

The personal stories that illustrate the book's strategies help you connect more deeply with the material. You may even get a chuckle or two from some of these.

What I get from the book is that we all have inner resources that we've hidden from ourselves, and that we can learn to tap these resources with a bit of work and AWARENESS.

This book could actually help in lots of areas besides making music. If you like motivational books, such as those by Tony Robbins, or books on NLP, this book might actually seem tame in comparison, but still relevant.

5-0 out of 5 stars Unexpected benefits of this book!!!
I bought this book on the recommendation of a friend. He thought it would improve my guitar playing. What I noticed almost immediately, within the excercizes is actually a methodolgy for dealing with attention deficit disorder! I have had ADD since before there was a diagnosis for it and the methods in this book are not only helping me with music but are also having a profound affect on other areas of my life. I don't think it was the author's intent to help in this regard, but this "inner game" method has far reaching implications....Thank you!!!...

5-0 out of 5 stars Vital Read for Aspiring Performers
Former principal bassist of the Cincinnati Symphony, Barry Green has created what has to be one of the most important books on musical psychology ever written. As a young clarinetist myself, I've found this read to help me change from one who frets over my auditions and solos to becoming a confident musician in front of others.

Green begins by discussing what makes up a good performance. He invented the formula P = p - i, where P is the level of the performance, p is the potential of the performer, and i is the level of mental interference during the performance. He explains how to decrease the amount of i in order to bring the level of P as close as possible to p.

Green then digs further into his ideas by introducing to two "selves". Quoted, "Self 1 is our interference. It contains our concepts about how things should be, our judgments and associations. It is particularly fond of the words 'should' and 'should not' and often sees things in terms of what 'could have been. Self 2 is the vast reservoir of potential within each one of us. It contains our natural talents and abilities, and is a virtually unlimited resource that we can tap and develope. Left to its own devices it performs with gracefulness and ease." Green goes own to give advice and excercises on how to ignore the interference of self 1 during performance and how to let self 2 work uninterupted.

Over the next chapters, Green goes into more technical and complicated details, while teaching us the powers of awareness, will, and trust. These three chapters are loaded with useful excercises, and most of them have the least do with music, at least directly. But they all tie in somewhere. Green also writes of 'Letting Go', a chapter all about how to 'become' the music while playing, rather than looking at it from a technical aspect.

Later, there's a particularly good chapter on how to, not perform but, listen to music. It explains why sometimes we don't feel moved by the music, and then gives relevant solutions to enjoying the performance.

Green chooses to end the book by not recapping all the techniques he have taught, but instead by writting several chapters on realizing how big a gift music is, and how to appreciate it to the fullest extent.

Reading this book is a potentially life changing experience. I urge all of you to give it a try...even if you are already a capable performer.

5-0 out of 5 stars Well developed techniques for musicians
Using Timothy Gallwey's "Inner Game" techniques, Barry Green has provided here an excellent resource for musicians who feel that they practice adequately, but still lack a "certain something" in their music. Mr. Green leads the reader through a series of examples and techniques that combat nervousness, a lack of emotion, and many other problems that most musicians face. Although I am a rather well versed saxophonist, I tended to get nervous before many of my performances and auditions, and the techniques of the "Inner Game" have helped me to combat that. My practice time is now more effective, and my performances are better because of this book. Some may feel that the only shorcoming in this book is that Green discusses too many varying techniques, but in actuality they are all similar in philosophy and practice, and they all lead the performer to greater chances of success.

5-0 out of 5 stars Could be the coach you've been looking for.
This book is a miracle for me. You might have heard of a book called the Inner Game of Tennis. In this book, the author reveals how he vastly improved his tennis skills through the revelation that he was actually playing 2 games: 1) The outer game, i.e. his skills and physical abilities and 2) The inner game, i.e. his mastery over his own psychological and emotional states while practicing and playing.

Well, these principles are not limited to the game of tennis, but wholly applicable to any challenge in life, from playing music to forming good relationships to whatever. Along comes a musician who recognizes this, teams up with the original author and writes a miraculous book for the musicians of the world. I doubt if there are many musicians who could not benefit from the information in this book.

Why should you improve your inner game? The book gives a great example... think of something that is easy for you to play, something you can play well every time. Now picture yourself thrust down onto the stage of Carnegie Hall in front of a packed house that expects you to play something brilliant. Do you think your nerves might get in the way of playing this simple little piece to your potential? If so, then you probably need this book. If not, you are a master already and I wonder why you are wasting your time reading this!

Remember that your skills, no matter what level, are considered part of your "outer game." These skills are particular to you, your physical limitations, your instrument, and your instrument's limitations. This book focuses on the inner game, which is universal. By universal, I mean the inner game is not even specific to music, but applies to any challenge. By using language, stories, and metaphors that are familiar to musicians, the book can help you improve your musical inner game, but there's no reason it should stop there.

The Inner Game of Music does an ingenious job of simplifying the psychology and spirituality of playing music into something practical by putting aside debatable beliefs about ego, id, subconscious, conscious, etc, and focusing simply on whether you are playing your inner game or losing it.

An example from my life... I have been studying with a master jazz guitarist for a couple of years. At times when I practice, I find myself playing a good inner game, very relaxed, playing from the heart, amazed at the notes I hear. I find that when you play a good inner game, you feel more like an observer than a participant. Well, when I sit down with my teacher, I become aware of his mastery. My own nervousness and desire to play well for him quite often cause enough interference to make me play well below my ability. Since reading this book, I have found that more often I can really relax with him, stretch out and really play to the best of my ability, often surprising us both. I find myself coming further in my limited practice time and playing better in unfamiliar situations. It is all about the inner game! ... Read more

32. The Art of Peter Max
by Charles A. Riley II, Peter Max
list price: $49.95
our price: $31.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0810932709
Catlog: Book (2002-10-01)
Publisher: Harry N Abrams
Sales Rank: 9140
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Colorful and cosmic, Peter Max's art has been an integral part of contemporary American culture for more than three decades. Beginning in the 1960s, when his bold, bright paintings embodied the spirit of the times, up to the present day, his prolific output has inspired people in every corner of the world. Premier art institutions regularly exhibit solo shows of his work, and his trademark posters have achieved international popularity. From being named Official Artist of the Grammy Awards for five successive years to painting a Continental Airlines 777 plane, Max's projects always garner enormous media attention.

In this comprehensive Max retrospective, 350 full-color images-many never before published-illustrate the artist's life and prolific career. Author Charles A. Riley II considers Max's uncanny ability to create fine art with tremendous popular appeal. ... Read more

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Peter Max in Boston!
The book was awesome, I loved looking at all the images. It brought back memories of a Peter Max beach towel I had over many summers.
I hear that Peter Max is in Boston this week, at "Wentworth Gallery" on Newbury St. I think it was thursday night. It would be so great to meet him and see his original artwork.

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful job reproducing beautiful art
First off I want to correct the often repeated false statement in a previous review: Heinz Edelman was the artist behind The Beatles Yellow Submarine, Peter Max had absolutely nothing to do with it, and was in no way the inspiration behind it. Edelman was already doing Yellow Sub style art before Max's style became famous. For the complete background read "Inside the Yellow Submarine".

That said, this is a wonderful, long over due collection of the art of Peter Max. I don't think this book could have been printed any better, it is stunning. For me, the only thing that could make it better would be to add even more pages of art. The classic 60s-70s period gets the short end of the stick being overshadowed by the newer works. It is all beautiful work either way, but my preference would have been for more of the older pieces.

People will be magnetically drawn to this sitting on your coffee table. This is also a great companion to "The Art of Rock" the 2-ton book of classic old Fillmore concert posters that was out about 15 years ago. They don't make art like this anymore...unfortunately.

5-0 out of 5 stars Peter Max
Everyone knows the genius of Peter Max and the fun of his art. I won't presume to review either. Instead, let's talk about the book! Beautiful printing on quality paper. The included commentary and history put a perspective to each piece of art that most readers wouldn't have otherwise. Peter Max inspired my wife to become an artist. She'll cherish this book for years to come. If you are a Max fan, so will you. As all coffee table books are, a bit pricey but an excellent work to enjoy again and again!

5-0 out of 5 stars Finally! A Collection of Classic Max Paintings & Drawings
Peter Max's influence was strongest in the 1960's when his style influenced everything from the Pop generation look to the Beatles film, "The Yellow Submarine." I became most of aware of Max's work as a resident of New York City after 9/11, when streetpost banners with his art tout the city's great landmarks, such as Lincoln Center and the Empire State Building.

This book is the first published collection I've seen, save for a couple of European books and one he did in 1976, that shows the breadth of his work. The son of immigrant parents, Max's later work seems to be most strongly associated with his renditions of American icons, such as the Statue of Liberty and the American flag. Some of his work, such as his Amazon-influenced "Better World" series, is stunning. Other work, such as Umbrella Man and Zero don't appeal to me quite as much. Back in the 60's, I think he was known mostly for his bold colors and psychadelic images. But environmentalism plays a bigger role in his late 80s and 90s work. His posters for the Rainforest Foundation and 1992 Earth Summit are stunning examples of this.

There's never been anyone quite like Peter Max, for better or for worse. I'd highly recommend this book to even casual fans as the reproductions are beautifully done and the vibrant colors leap off the page. Patrick O'Connell, NYC ... Read more

33. Rise Up Singing: The Group Singing Songbook
by Pete Seeger, Annie Patterson, Kore Loy McWhirter, Peter Blood
list price: $22.95
our price: $15.61
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1881322122
Catlog: Book (2004-10-28)
Publisher: Sing Out Publications
Sales Rank: 8695
Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Lyrics and guitar chords for nearly 1,200 songs are arranged in a compact, easy-to-use format in this comprehensive collection. Folk revival favorites; Broadway show tunes; Beatles songs; hymns, spirituals, and gospel standards; songs about peace, freedom, labor, and the environment; and chanteys are among the types of songs included. This revised and retypeset version of the enormously popular group singing songbook makes this essential resource easier to read and use than ever before.
... Read more

Reviews (39)

5-0 out of 5 stars Sing your heart out!
Like most people, I had to get this when I saw a friend's copy. So much great stuff! I've been singing out of it for years, and now I'm starting to play mandolin and using the chords for the first time. I sympathize with the people who have difficulty with the notation in the book, but as a total beginner I can figure most of it out. There are a lot of songs that are included more for their admirable political content rather than for their lyric power. Since I, like almost anybody else, have never heard them, I can't comment on their musical charms, but they aren't destined to survive. But there's so much timeless music here: a must-have treasure.

5-0 out of 5 stars You'll sing your heart out and finally know all the words
I love to sing all types of songs, but when I came across this book, I thought I had died and gone to song heaven. 90% of my favorites were included (and I know a lot of songs)and it's great to have them all in one place.

The catagories are many and the print is easy to read. Plus, you get chords, which I appreciate since I play an autoharp. The cross references to other catagories at the end of each section is useful also.

I have used this songbook at many, many singalongs and hope that someday, they will come out with a vol.II to cover the small percentage of my favorites not in this volume. Until then, I will continue to rise up singing each and every time I use this great book!

5-0 out of 5 stars Not all to everyone but I *love* it.
With knowledge of most basic chords and a fondness for folky music (traditional & revival + related - old English/Irish, spirituals, 60s-70s pop) I'll page through for hours picking through these tunes.
I'm familiar with ~ 15% of the songs here but that's still loads. When I pick up a new Leadbelly CD or hear a classic on the radio I look it up and usually find it - dog ear another page.
Some of the reviews seem to be looking for a teaching guide. I wouldn't call S.O. that but if you're looking for a classic source of classic tunes, definitely pick this one up!

5-0 out of 5 stars one of my very favorites
When I first came across the first edition, at the Philly FOlk Fest, I literally jumped up and down in excitement. They were sold out and while we waited for a new supply to arrive a friend and I sang our way through the sample book. I had to buy the second edition a few years ago because my original copy was falling apart, quite literally. (But I still have it; couldn't bear to throw it away.) The second ed adds a much-needed songwriter index.

You couldn't play the songs in this book if you don't already know the tune, since only chords are listed for most songs. On the other hand I can't open to any page without finding songs I know (and usually, love). Many of these are songs you won't find in other songbooks. All are singable. Included songs run the gamut of folk music (and that includes trad, Celtic and other ethnicities, folk-rock, singer-songwriter, and on and on) as well as Motown, Tin Pan Alley, a few showtunes, and more. When I first came across the first edition, at the Philly FOlk Fest, I literally jumped up and down in excitement. They were sold out and while we waited for a new supply to arrive a friend and I sang our way through the sample book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Indispensible & a classic
This book has to be experienced to be believed. Compressing 1200 songs into less than 300 pages, it is a masterpiece of concise musical reference. The songs are organized into chapters based on themes, but there is also an excellent index which even lets you to look up a song by its first line. Extremely handy!

Some people have mentioned finding the book confusing or poorly laid out/organized. While I disagree I can understand how it might be that way for some. The abbreviated chord notations don't convey the timing details as well as regular sheet music, and there are no melody notes (vocal part) so you really have to be somewhat familar with the song. But there is a definite logic to their notation system, which is explained at the beginning of the book, and I think they've done a fabulous job of squeezing a huge amount (and variety) of music into a really small space. It replaces several times its weight in other songbooks and the spiral binding is not only convenient but also very durable. ... Read more

34. Walk On: The Spiritual Journey of U2
by Steve Stockman
list price: $13.99
our price: $11.19
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 088419793X
Catlog: Book (2001-11-01)
Publisher: Relevant Books
Sales Rank: 8700
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

One of the world's leading voices of faith and social activism also happens to be one of its biggest rock groups. The band members drink, smoke and swear — yet a radical biblical agenda and faith fuel their life and work. Welcome to the dichotomy of U2, arguably the greatest rock group on the planet.

Walk On: The Spiritual Journey of U2 explores the questions and controversy surrounding the deep-rooted religious themes of the group's music. It is a spiritual companion to their albums. It exposes the real meaning behind many of their songs and performances.

From the group's beginnings at the Shalom Christian fellowship in Dublin all the way through their seeming rebirth on their most recent album, the book brings to light the struggles and triumphs of the band members' Christian faith. How have they kept it so vibrant in the harsh light of the world stage? Have they found what they're looking for? Why has the Church shunned them? Join author Steve Stockman in pouring over more than twenty years of interviews, analysis and insight in an unparalleled quest to answer the burning questions everyone wants to know. ... Read more

Reviews (53)

4-0 out of 5 stars I finally found what I'm looking for...
Doesn't it always seem like U2's spiritual life gets short shrift?--one question per interview with Bono. I always want more, and Stockman has delivered it. He uses his extensive knowledge of the U2 Canon combined with his pastoral skills to bring understanding and insight to the meandering postmodern faith journey of the world's most fascinating band.

While Stockmen draws heavily on already printed interviews and media sources for his direct quotes of band members (many of which I'd read elsewhere first), I found his comments on their comments helpful and surprisingly, not distracting. In fact, Stockman's own faith is refreshing in a world of evangelicalsim that doesn't give much breathing room to artists. U2, as he describes them, is the quintessential postmodern expression of faith through art. No wonder they rankle at times. And no wonder they inspire!

This book is especially satisfying to fans who've memorized lyrics, attended multiple concerts and read anything related to U2. Stockman pulls the pieces together in one long satisfying research paper that is neither stuffy or fluffy. Instead, he writes in comfortable prose and uses well-documented research.

The only thing missing is a fresh interview with Bono so that Stockman could have asked him his three questions.

This book encouraged me in my faith journey--to keep being true to questions and answers, and to live my spiritual life authentically.

4-0 out of 5 stars I finally found what I've been looking for...
Doesn't it always seem like U2's spiritual life gets short shrift?--one lousy question per interview with Bono. I always want more, and finally, Stockman has delivered it. He uses his extensive knowledge of the U2 Canon combined with his pastoral skills to bring understanding and insight to the meandering postmodern faith journey of the world's most fascinating band.

While Stockmen draws heavily on already printed interviews and media sources for his direct quotes of band members (many of which I'd read elsewhere first), I found his comments on their comments helpful and surprisingly, not distracting. In fact, Stockman's own faith is refreshing in a world of evangelicalsim that doesn't give much breathing room to artists. U2, as he describes them, is the quintessential postmodern expression of faith through art. No wonder they rankle at times. And no wonder they inspire! My expression of faith was challenged by Stockman's incisive thoughts about how to be a Christian in a postmodern world.

This book is especially satisfying to fans who've memorized lyrics, attended multiple concerts and read anything related to U2. Stockman pulls the pieces together in one long satisfying research paper that is neither stuffy or fluffy. Instead, he writes in comfortable prose and relies on well-documented research.

The only thing missing is a fresh interview with Bono so that Stockman could have asked him his three questions.

This book encouraged me in my faith journey--to keep being true to questions and answers, and to live my spiritual life authentically.

5-0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended book about U2
Walk On, The Spiritual Journey of U2 brilliantly tells the story of the spiritual side of U2, arguably the biggest band in the world. The author does a good job of not spending too much time on any certain period of time. Rather, he outlines the changes the band has gone through, and the frustration of being typecast by the church and the media alike. The author describes the feeling you get at a live U2 concert. How does one retain their Christian views when you're not able to attend church without a crowd gathering? This book answeres this question and many more. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys U2's music, or anyone who still hasn't found what they're looking for.

3-0 out of 5 stars Postmodern, huh?
"U2's post-modern worldview ... allows mystery and confusion to sit alongside faith." (p.150)
Well, at least explain what you mean by 'post-modern.'
The big problem I had with this book was that Stockman mentions the terms, "Church," "Evangelicalists (is that the same as "evangelists?")" and "Evangelical Christianity" several times each but never bothers to explain what those terms mean.
I was reignited a year ago in a church unlike most other churches I've seen. It may go down as the best move I ever made. I go to an impressive church and I'm not ashamed of it.
When I read past the vague terminology and Stockman's bitterness toward America and "the Church," I found tremendous insight regarding the Biblical themes that are inherant in this band's music. I like U2 more than ever and recomend that all Christians look into this band. Jesus is one of their fans - maybe that's why they've lasted so long.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Great Companion for the U2 Fan
"Walk On" is a very informative book on the spiritual background of the group. Stockman has followed the group from the beginning and knows what he's talking about. For me, being both a Christian and a U2 fan, I found this book facinating because it answered so many questions, the main question being the spiritual integrety of the group. What I learned from the book was as much a lesson on biblical faith vs. the modern Christian right as it was on U2. Stockman makes clear the presure put on Bono and U2 to become the poster band for Evangelical Christians in the US, when the last thing they wanted to do was become alligned with hypocritical people and televangelists. As a result, U2 changed thier persona and made their albums and tours into an act to show the decadence and emptyness of superstardom. All the while, Stockman contends that U2 (minus Adam) has a deeply rooted faith born in Ireland where being a Christian was about as radical a thing as you could be. Each chapter of the book centers around a different album thoughout the bands career where Stockman digs deeper into the lyrics, eventually leading to the most recent "Elevation" tour. When I saw the Elevation tour in 2000, it left feeling blessed as if I was in Church at a worship service. Bono states the same thing about the tour and their latest music, which is more of a return to faith. The only knock on this book is that Stockman talks almost entirely about lyrics, and doesn't really cover the musical directions the band has taken over the years. While this was his intent, it was a little frustrating to read, for example, about the lyrical triumph of "Zooropa" when the music was at it's most experiental state. I suppose this book would be even better if read along side another book that chronicles the bands musical direction from album to album. Overall, this book tought me a lot about U2, the religious community of today, and my own personal faith. I highly recommend it to anyone who really wants to understand the heart behind the greatest rock band today. ... Read more

35. The Dharma of Star Wars
by Matthew Bortolin
list price: $14.95
our price: $10.17
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0861714970
Catlog: Book (2005-04-25)
Publisher: Wisdom Publications
Sales Rank: 10799
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Brings together the phenomenon of 'Star Wars with humanity's profound hunger for the spiritual. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars entertaining and wise
I really enjoyed this book. Matthew Bortolin uses the story of Star Wars (across all six movies) to illustrate Buddhist concepts and uses Buddhist concepts to highlight deeper themes in the Star Wars saga. The result makes Star Wars more profound and moving and Buddhism more accessible. Avid fans of Star Wars will appreciate all the detailed references provided by a true fan devoted to the series, while more casual Star Wars viewers will find the movies much more compelling after reading this book. Those new to Buddhism will learn a lot from Bortolin's accessible, human way of presenting these ideas, while those with more familiarity will likely experience new insights from Bortolin's novel approach. It's nice to read something that is funny and entertaining yet also contains real wisdom and insight. I find myself thinking about things mentioned in the book as I'm dealing with various situations in my life. And now I'm really looking forward to seeing Episode 3! ... Read more

36. Christian Wisdom of the Jedi Masters
by DickStaub
list price: $16.95
our price: $11.53
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Asin: 0787978949
Catlog: Book (2005-03-11)
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
Sales Rank: 2284
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Written by award-winning radio personality Dick Staub, this compelling book is filled with anecdotes from the Star Wars films that serve as a launching pad into rediscovering authentic Christianity. Christian Wisdom of the Jedi Masters also contains quotes from revered “Jedi Christians” such as Thomas Merton, Teresa of Avila, the Apostle Paul, G. K. Chesterton, and other theologians, mystics, writers, and philosophers. The author sheds new light on the struggles and challenges of living faithfully in postmodern life and offers a reintroduction to what C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien called the “one true myth,” Christianity. ... Read more

Reviews (14)

4-0 out of 5 stars About time Christians stop critiquing Star Wars!
When I was a teenager, I remember at Sunday School, we used material from Focus on the Family (Dr. James Dobson's organization) and when one lesson critiqued Star Wars as a pagan-influenced film and "Empire" especially for its "Buddhist concepts", our Sunday School class voted to drop use of Focus on the Family for our lessons. That was back in 1989 and I've never liked Dr. Dobson since (as I've learned more about him).

In the late 1990s, when I learned about how George Lucas was inspired by Joseph Campbell and his study of ancient mythologies to create the brilliant "Star Wars" saga, that got me interested in learning Joseph Campbell. There's nothing "evil" or "pagan" or even "anti-Christian" in learning about how other mythologies influenced story-tellers and religions through the ages. Unless Christians realize this fact, they will continue to lose out to popular culture and become as irrelevant as Zeus and Medusa.

I saw this book and it piqued my curiosity. I wanted to see if the writer had an anti-Star Wars bias or was he willing to examine the ideas in the film series in relation to Christian viewpoints. Fortunately, he is not like James Dobson...that is to say, he's not threatened by the big ideas presented by Star Wars. This book is amazing and necessary, as the writer ties in ideas to Christian ideas without stretching the point to where it doesn't fit. Fortunately, the writer seems to be advocating a kind of Christian life I'm familiar consistent with Jesus' call to help the poor and afflicted, the commitment to peace and nonviolence, etc. He doesn't try to distort the message of the Star Wars films by advancing the conservative/fundamentalist Christian line that supports wars, unfiltered capitalistic greed and compassionless economics...he sticks with the Jesus of the New Testament and early Christians who stood up to the Roman Empire. Thus, the writer has good credibility with me and this is a book I'd love to teach in my church's young adult Sunday School class.

The reason I subtract a star is because the writer totally got "karma" wrong. In one chapter, he criticizes George Lucas for his decision to change Han Solo's firing at Greedo first in the special edition of "Star Wars: A New Hope" because Lucas believes that killing without reason means there can be no hope of redemption (which isn't true if you follow the trajectory of Anakin Skywalker to his ultimate redemption). The writer tries to say that this view is what karma is. That is not true. Karma is simply the Golden Rule...a universal law much like the law of physics (for every action there is an opposite and equal reaction). Karma is any action that returns to the originator of such action. If you do evil, evil will come back to you. If you do good, good will come back to you. That's all it is. To distort it as something else hurts one's credibility a bit. To me, it seems like a lot of Christians are threatened by karma...even though no one should be. Jesus taught a principle of karma and if we all lived by the law of karma, we would have nothing to fear. Only people who commit evil acts want karma to be untrue, because they don't want to pay the price of their sins.

Other than that one glaring error, I recommend this book for study, as it will help people become better Christians and that is a good thing. Too many people have fallen away from Christianity because of the hypocritical leaders. Anything that helps people understand what Jesus really was about is a good thing.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Unique Integration of Theology and Culture
At the end of the 20th century, Paul Tillich tried to integrate theology and culture so that a world come of age could connect with Christian faith.While his attempt was brave, his failure may be explained by a departure from the concrete and radical teachings of Jesus, favoring instead the obscure language of ambiguous religion.

Dick Staub's book is successful precisely because his integration of Christian theology, history, philosophy, culture and biblical text embodied within the popular Star War myth retains the radical claims of Jesus for thinking and living Christianly.

As I read the book, I felt I was immersed in a meditation or devotional guide for the day.The reader is introdcued to mini-vignettes of church history, world culture, spirituality, history, politics and philosophy as the Jedi story is woven throughout the book.At other times I felt as though I was offered a study guide in refreshing language into the basics of Christianity with no requirement of prior religious knowledge.

Whether part of the Jedi following or not, Christian Wisdom of the Jedi Masters assures the reader that her quest for spiritual reality is only superceded by God's historic seeking of all humanity through the cross of Jesus Christ.The Gospel is conveyed to both mainline liberal, conservative evangelical or for most others who are spared the use of religious labels---all of whom desire spiritual fulfillment created by the nihilism of North American consumerism barely challenged by an equally commodified Christian(?) church.

What Dick Staub has accomplished is a new paradigm for communicating the historic Gospel story of God's love for the world.His book is an effective interplay of both medium and message without the one subsuming the other.Its fast-paced, succinct medium written humanly and vulnerably strips away the usual barriers that often accompany usual theological discourse.At the same time, its message is precisely retained without regrettably dumbed-down reduction that often characterizes today's religious parlance in a misguided attempt to trade off truth for "relevance."

All future 21st century theological discourse is now challenged to grapple with Staub's linguistic paradigm when confronted with contextualizing the Gospel into an increasingly post-human culture.

Paul O. Bischoff, Ph.D.
Wheaton, Illinois

5-0 out of 5 stars Rare Jewel on Today'sBookstore Shelves

Excellent!Practical!A Rare Find On Today'sBookshelves!!

Storytelling is the oldest form of passing wisdom from one generation to the next.The elder tells the story of his experiences, weaving in lessons he has gleaned.While the younger listens, the story becomes part of his/her mental landscape.Then when a similar situation arises, VOILA!The story is remembered by the youth.... and the lesson is applied.

Dick Staub is the consummate teacher/mentor in Wisdom of the Jedi. With a heart longing to reach the younger generation, he forges powerful metaphors and analogies from Star Wars for a generation who finds itself in an abyss of society's smorgasbord of sense overload and material possessions.

Today there is much talk of one's "spiritual journey" or "path", but not much evidence of radical transformation.Christianity `lite' doesn't seem to have questions about God......No Holy Mystery......No Awe.....just answers in fill in the blank Bible studies or in systematic theology.

Staub challenges the average Christian with Star Wars metaphors offering transformation, hope, and a sense of meaning.Those who choose to look at their relationship with God through the Star Wars lens will glean unexpected riches....and will finish the book with an excited mind and spirit.

Each generation has to discover God for itself. If Dick Staub had lived 100 years ago, he would have been an old man in the chimney corner passing down the faith through creative he urged young listeners to co-create with their Creator.Go buy the book. Itpierces the soul with laserlike precision and makes everything else, except being a follower of Jesus Christ, as exciting as a dial tone!

May the Creator of the Force be with you.

Sharon Newman Bordine, Ph.D.
NASA Teacher in Space representative

5-0 out of 5 stars A Metaphor for Life's Journey in Faith
The great success of this book rests not only on Dick Staub's ability to challenge his audience, but also his knack for persuading readers to challenge themselves.Mr. Staub rightly exposes the superficiality and hypocrisy that plague what he calls "Christianity-lite," and encourages us to move beyond that trap in search of a more authentic and transforming faith in and through Jesus Christ.Anecdotes and scripture verses abound, encouraging readers to continue their exploration of the "One True Myth" once they've turned the book's final page.Although the Star Wars metaphors will no doubt irk some cultural isolationists within the fundamentalist community, I highly recommend this book to anyone in search of genuine spirituality.

Note:If you simply wish to further your understanding of Jedi lore and philosophy, I suggest that you refer to the Tales of the Jedi series from Dark Horse Comics.Not only are they excellent reads, they also contain insight into the history of the Jedi Order, the rise of the Sith, and origins of the conflict between the two.However, don't expect "Christian Wisdom of the Jedi Masters" to resolve Star Wars continuity gaps, or provide you with a lengthy discertation on the theology of the Jedi.It's simply *not* the author set out to do with this book.As for the alleged "crass commercialism" of this work, I find it hard to reconcile such a notion with a careful reading of Mr. Staub's work.He is actually quite pointed in his criticisms of the gimmick mentality pervasive in today's "Christian" subculture, and challenges his readers to seek something deeper and more authentic than flavor-of-the-week faith.

1-0 out of 5 stars Caveat emptor
This work is nothing short of a cheap attempt to not only jump on the bandwagon, but to eat the donkey as well.It seems as if Staub wrote this book as a Christian philosophy piece without regard to Star Wars then, when no one took interest in it, added the Star Wars reference to drum up attention.
His comparisons of Christian philosophy to ideas posited in the Star Wars movies are entirely unconnected.The book uses Star Wars as an enticement so that the author can then move into his own Christian philosophy, but never relates the ideas in a meaningful way.
After reading the work I am forced to wonder if Staub bothered to watch Star Wars at all.In chapter 3 Staub describes Yoda as, "...a strange, bluish, big-eared, wizened little creature."Yoda, sweet friends, is green---not blue.
As a book of Christian philosophy this work is pedestrian, but as an analysis of the philosophy of Star Wars this book is nothing less than a contemptible swindle that uses a reference to popular movies to sell an unrelated book.
... Read more

37. Reefer Madness : Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor in the American Black Market
by Eric Schlosser
list price: $13.00
our price: $9.75
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0618446702
Catlog: Book (2004-04-01)
Publisher: Mariner Books
Sales Rank: 18357
Average Customer Review: 3.71 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

America"s black market is much larger than we realize, and it affects us all deeply, whether or not we smoke pot, rent a risqué video, or pay our kids" nannies in cash. In Reefer Madness the best-selling author of Fast Food Nation turns his exacting eye on the underbelly of the American marketplace and its far-reaching influence on our society. Exposing three American mainstays — pot, porn, and illegal immigrants — Eric Schlosser shows how the black market has burgeoned over the past several decades. He also draws compelling parallels between underground and overground: how tycoons and gangsters rise and fall, how new techonology shapes a market, how government intervention can reinvigorate black markets as well as mainstream ones, and how big business learns — and profits — from the underground. Reefer Madness is a powerful investigation that illuminates the shadow economy and the culture that casts that shadow. ... Read more

Reviews (70)

4-0 out of 5 stars A Mild Disapointment Compared To Author's Previous Book
Eric Schlosser's latest book Reefer Madness is a bit of a disappointment after his very good and very popular Fast Food Nation. Schlosser's investigative acumen is on display in this book, but what he ends up producing are three long essays that could stand alone as books in and of themselves. I think that the choice of Reefer Madness for a title was a bad decision. The notoriety Schlosser gained from Fast Food Nation could have sold the book without the rip off title. I think the long "An Empire Of The Obscene" essay about Reuben Sturman's porn empire, which totals 100 pages, would have made for a better title and focus for the book. The porn business is an interesting study in and of itself and Schlosser should have gotten his publisher to make it into a separate book. Those reservations aside, I think the book is a worth a look for somebody looking for good investigative journalism to read.

Reefer Madness is a business book that focuses on three separate sectors of the black market economy: Marijuana consumption, migrant labor in the strawberry fields of California and porn. "Reefer Madness" deals with the persecution of the users of by far and away the most popular drug in the U.S.: Marijuana. Originally smoked by poor blacks and Mexicans in the early 20th century, marijuana has become the most popular drug in the country. Schlosser traces the interesting case of Indiana biker Mark Young, who was originally sentenced to life in prison without possibility for parole for his involvement in a marijuana delivery. It was Young's first marijuana offense. He's wasn't even the grower or major dealer in the transaction he was involved in, but he refused to play the role of a snitch for the prosecution in his case and received the ultimate punishment for his "crime." Young's sentence was later reduced. Young remains an unrepentant pot smoker to this day.

"In The Strawberry Fields" Schlosser deals with the misfortune of the nation's poorest workforce: The migrant laborers in California's strawberry's fields. Schlosser focuses on the heart of the Strawberry business in Watsonville and the failed mid-90's campaign by the AFL-CIO to organize the fields in the area. The market in migrant labor is a very important study because of the profound effect it has on bringing wages down in the overall economy, thus helping fuel the black market, as people fed up with declining wages look to find ways to make money off the books. The '70s was a time when it appeared that the United Farm Workers were going to finally organize most of the migrant work force. However, like with the rest of organized labor, whatever hopes the UFW had of organizing the fields has been dashed by the aggressive union busting of growers.

Schlosser notes that while tax payer cash is lavished onto the largest corporations on a daily basis, the one sector of the economy where the "free market" has been most ruthlessly applied has been with labor. Observing the burgeoning shanty towns that have sprouted up throughout much of California to house this exploited labor force Schlosser writes, "The market will drive wages down like water, until they reach the lowest possible level. Today that level is being set not in Washington or New York or Sacramento but in the fields of Baja California and the mountain villages of Oaxaca. That level is about five dollars a day. No deity that men have ever worshipped is more ruthless and more hollow than the free market unchecked; there is no reason why shantytowns should not appear on the outskirts of every American city. All those who now consider themselves devotees of the market should take a good look at what is happening in California. Left to its own devices, the free market always seeks a work force that is hungry, desperate, and cheap - a work force that is anything but free."

"An Empire Of The Obscene" traces the rise and fall of the real "King of Porn." It wasn't porn start John Holmes, but an obscure, rarely photographed, Cleveland based businessman named Rueben Sturman. Sturman was able to fend off all federal charges of peddling in "obscenity," but in the end he was brought down, like Al Capone before him, by tax evasion charges. I hadn't even heard of Sturman before reading Schlosser's book. Porn, like with marijuana, is one of those products which Americans publicly abhor, privately adore and consume in astonishingly high amounts. Schlosser points out that the porn business has been at the cutting edge of exploiting technology to increase its size. From the VHS video tape to cable to the Internet, technology has brought porn from red light district store fronts and theaters into the homes of millions of eager porn consumers. Today, heavy handed prosecutions of the porn business are less likely, and less likely to have much of an effect on the business, than ever now the that ranks of the largest distributors of porn include major cable providers, not anti-government counter culture types like Sturman.

Schlosser reviews the economics of the economic underground. Nobody knows just how large it really is, but it could be ten percent or more of the overall U.S. economy. The reasons for the sharp rise of the black market starting in the '60s and '70s are manifold. Declining wages, regressive taxation and government regulation are all factors in this. The hippie counter culture of the '60s and the anti-tax movements of the '70s have all played a role in shaping the anti-government attitudes that have fueled the black market boom. What it all reveals is the huge chasm between what the government tells us is "bad" for us and should be banned and what we actually do consume in private. As Schlosser said in his May 19 Working Assets Radio interview, "Maybe some of these things aren't so bad afterall."

5-0 out of 5 stars three essays that should be invidual books, but worth readin
After reading the fantastic book Fast Food Nation, I'm willing to read anything that Eric Schlosser publishes. When I heard what the subject matter was for his new book (pot, porn, and illegal labor) I wasn't that interested but I wanted to find out what Schlosser had to say. In the introduction, Schlosser writes that the book is made up of three essays that are mostly unrelated, but these essays were tied together with the idea of the American Underground Economy which pervades the book. Reefer Madness is Schlosser's attempt to show how large the underground economy (meaning, non-taxed and illegal money) is in America. Schlosser discusses the laws and the social conditions that have allowed these things to occur.

The first essay is on Marijuana. Apparently, marijuana is America's number one cash crop, but it is illegal to buy, sell, grow, or possess any amount of marijuana in America. Schlosser gives the history of marijuana legislation and reveals the severity of the punishments regarding marijuana violations (even compared to murder). This essay looks at the applications of marijuana laws throughout United States history. It highlights some of the absurdly harsh penalties given for first time convictions of even trace amounts of pot; this essay also shows the disparity in verdicts for the children of politicians compared to the poor. There are comparisons with the drug laws of other nations and a discussion on the health risks and health concerns regarding marijuana. Very interesting essay.

The second essay deals with illegal labor in California. Specifically, the essay is on the illegal labor in the strawberry industry. This is the shortest essay of the three, but it does a good job in explaining the rise of migrant labor since the 1970's and why farm companies would use this labor. Surprisingly, most of America's strawberries are grown in California and at least half of the labor provided is illegal. The conditions that these workers (from Mexico) live in is horrible and the labor itself is one of the most physically demanding work that one can do on a farm. Illegal labor is becoming a larger and larger sector of some industries as these men (mostly) will work for significantly lower wages just so that they can have work. This essay had more of a human story to it and was more emotionally involving than the Marijuana essay. However, this essay didn't seem to have the societal import that the discussion on marijuana law did.

The third essay focuses on pornography. Schlosser does not touch on the morality side of the pornography issue, but instead deals with the economics of porn. Like the other two essays, this one details the history of pornography in America and happens to be the longest of the three essays. Pornography is big business and the U.S. government has been cracking down on the industry on an off for years. For many years, the leading figure in the industry was one man, Reuben Sturman. The legality of porn is constantly in question and at the base are the very hazy obscenity laws. Much of this essay is about Sturman, his rise to lead the industry and the attempt to convict Sturman.

Any one of these essays could easily become a full length book and would be very interesting individually. Taken together, the tie that binds them is not very strong and the transition between the essays feels a little jumpy. This is an extremely interesting book and one that I am very glad that I read. Individually, these are excellent essays, but when taken together, they lose some of the narrative force that Schlosser excels at. This is worth reading, without question.

5-0 out of 5 stars more, please
I now know more about drug and obscenity laws than I ever imagined I'd need the brain cell storage to accommodate ... and that's a peculiarly good thing. I came out of this book with a new set of unlikely personal heroes - men and women who first challenged the absurdly restrictive obscenity laws in order to make health and birth control information legal to ship through the US mail ... and even folks like the irrepressibly obnoxious Larry Flynt, who is in some respects our nation's last defense against enforced, legislated morality. Read about the bizarre, inconsistent and patently ridiculous drug laws that keep marijuana users under a heavier legal boot than convicted child rapists. Find out why I will never again, so long as I live, spend money at a Taco Bell. If this seems like a broad spread to cover in one book, that's because part of the beauty of Schlosser is his ability to ferret out the very real connections between legitimate business and the black markets that we (as the blindly consuming public) may never suspect.

In our present culture of conspicuous censorship and our lamely moral-high-ground-napping political climate, this is a highly instructive read. GO AND GET IT. Consider it your civic duty to educate yourself on what your government and its corporate cohorts are really up to while you're not watching.

5-0 out of 5 stars Changed my perspective!
Eric has done it again. I read his last book Fast Food Nation, and was impressed with his depth and skill at writing. This book was even better.

Eric sets up the book with a discussion on the U.S. Drug war on Marijuana. He unpacks several cases where the government has spent millions of dollars to stop something that has never proven to be lethal or dangerous to ones health. Then, he steps into the world of the migrant worker, especially those in the strawberry fields of California. Eric raises the question: Why does the government do so little for these people who are being used and abused for their cheap labor? Schlosser ends with a discussion on the pornography industry. He again refers to how the government spends billions of dollars attempting to limit something that is a freedom this country was fought to defend.

I am an evangelical pastor with a conservative, republican upbringing. This book raises major questions for some of the verbal stances I take against things such as Marijuana and pornography - which I believe are both wrong - and do and say nothing about the plight of the migrant workers and the injustice they receive every day. I don't see the justification of spending so much money trying to eliminate products of capitalism and a free nation. Even though I think that getting high and the obscene are horrible for ones are cigarettes, eating too much fast food, being lazy - but those are choices that individuals have to make, not be forced upon by a large government. Especially when women and children cannot eat because the same government will not protect the rights of these workers.

As you can see this book grabbed me. It will grab and challenge you to!

5-0 out of 5 stars An Informative Potpouri of Topics
Having read the author's previous book, and holding the same reservations that anyone would have about follow-ups (that it won't be nearly as good as the first outing), I picked up this book and set it aside for a quiet time. When I finally got around to reading Reefer Madness, I found I could not put it down. Time literally stopped, and some passages merited second and third readings. On his second try, Schlosser delivered big-time, and while more of an academic essay and an ad populum appeal to values than hard-hitting investigative journalism, it still manages to uphold the tradition of excellence in muckraking journalism.

The book consists of three extended essays on such diverse but inter-linked topics as pornography, marijuana and migrant, specifically illegal agricultural, labor. The subjects are inter-linked because first they are part of a vibrant, free-wheeling and dynamic underground economy in America, and second there have been some rather unusual linkages between the two. One colorful example of such linkages is the fact that many enterprising drug producers have on occasion used illegal migrant labor to tend to marijuana crops in out of the way places. Another very colorful (or disturbing, depending on your point of view) example is the prolific use of marijuana and other illegal drugs as inducements to get participants to perform certain acts in the pornography industry or as a means of obtaining such drugs (which for some reason, the author fails to mention, even though numerous anecdotal affirmations of this are available).

Nonetheless, each activity represents Big Business in America. One of the three, pornography, has made the transition from the fringe to mainstream business, and because of this, does not really count as a true underground activity, at least in my mind. The problem of illegal migrant labor has been knowingly overlooked as a result of a gentlemen's agreement between corporations (which would not be nearly as profitable without it) and the government (which would prefer to use as little of its resources as possible policing this problem). On the other hand, the marijuana trade has been and is patently illegal, and the author suspects that this state of affairs will change, moving towards that of pornography, or that of illegal migrant labor. The situation for each of these industries, beginning with their history, the extent of activity currently in each sphere, and the impact each has had, particularly on those who participate in each sphere, is covered in a fair amount of detail.

The book exposes how We The People really get what we want, and reveals an undisclosed truth as to how our economic and social order really maintains itself. For example, food has become cheaper over time in no small part because of our government's stance on migrant labor. Of course, there are the occasional crackdowns and sensational raids, but that merely goes through the motions and panders to the Press and flag-waving conservatives. As such, more than a few adherents of the Back to the Land Movement and Ecological Farming ideologies should take note.

It also reveals the gross double standard we apply to those who are governed and those who do the governing. American Express, I believe, once advertised its credit with the phrase 'Membership has its Priviledges'. Something similar can be said about our ruling elite, who overturn drug (and other) convictions on their relatives and cronies, but throw the book at the average wage earning schmuck.

Granted, the second chapter, In the Strawberry Fields, covers not only illegal farm labor but also the California agricultural industry. However, the industry as a whole is totally dependent on either illegal migrant labor or laborers who receive neither a living wage nor health benefits. The third chapter, An Empire of the Obscene, intertwines the growth of pornography with the exploits of perhaps the most famous elder statesman of smut, Reuben Sturman. Mr. Sturman was the most successful entrepreneur of porn, whose marketing skills and innovative insights literally formed the modern day adult industry. He also proved himself to be a very interesting character study, being an unusual blend of savvy salesman, entrepreneur, flag-waving patriot and conservative family-man. Mr. Sturman also took on the formidable federal government by becoming a most unlikely champion of first amendent rights, and won while simultaneously dodging his taxes and thumbing his nose at the IRS. This colorful character alone would make for very interesting reading in a separate book.

As a whole, the book takes a Progressive stance towards each of these activities, focusing on the effects each has on the people directly involved in the particular activity. While there exists some grousing about the free market and capitalism, particularly in the preface, The Underground, and the epilogue, Out of the Underground, the content, I believe, will provide positive reinforcement for many that are for social justice (and Pro-Pot and Pro-Porn) and will spark some heated debates. Reefer Madness definitely makes for good, fascinating reading, and I bet that if one were to lend his or her copy to a friend, he or she would never see the book again. ... Read more

38. The Art of Robots
by Amid Amidi, William Joyce, Chris Wedge (foreword)
list price: $40.00
our price: $27.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0811845494
Catlog: Book (2005-03-01)
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Sales Rank: 58526
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Book Description

The team behind the blockbuster animated hit Ice Age --Twentieth Century Fox, Blue Sky Studios, and Academy Award®-winning director Chris Wedge -- joined forces with acclaimed children's author William Joyce to create another visually magnificent, animated classic in Robots. Conceptualized by this stellar creative team and voiced by stars such as Ewan McGregor, Halle Berry, Mel Brooks, Stanley Tucci, Greg Kinnear, and Amanda Bynes, Robots is a magical contribution to the art of animation. Here to celebrate the film is The Art of Robots, offering a sneak peek at the early visual developmental stages of the film. Featuring the spectacular concept art created by the team at Blue Sky Studios and by producer and production designer William Joyce, this innovative and imaginative book is an exclusive backstage pass to the hidden animation artistry behind Robots. ... Read more

39. SIN-A-RAMA: Sleaze Sex Paperbacks of the Sixties
by Brittany A. Daley, Adam Parfrey, Lydia Lunch, Earl Kemp, Miriam Linna, Jay A. Gertzman, John Gilmore, Michael Hemmingson, Robert Silverberg, Lynn Munroe, Stephen J. Gertz
list price: $24.95
our price: $16.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1932595058
Catlog: Book (2004-11-09)
Publisher: Feral House
Sales Rank: 43291
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Swappers, swingers, transvestites, nymphos, hookers, dominatrixes, lesbians: in the 1960s, these stock characters were staples of the naughty novel, and their lurid antics formed an entire genre dubbed "sleaze" by legions of avid modern-day collectors. Uncovering a racy repository of American fantasies and fears from more than 40 years ago, Sin-A-Rama ravishes readers with the splendidly spicy cover art of the period's top illustrators as well as entertaining excerpts from the best and worst of the genre. Cultural commentary is featured as well, including fascinating accounts of the ways in which the genre's publishers - often mobsters - would distribute their titles to the public. ... Read more

Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars Sleaze by the million

It soon becomes apparent when reading the first few chapters of this interesting book that in this tiny part of the publishing industry were an equally small number of people (mostly males, obviously) yet they were responsible for producing millions of trash paperbacks that sold in the Fifties, Sixties and early Seventies.This book is a celebration of their endeavours.

Because of the very competitive arena in which these publishers worked, with twenty or more new titles each month the covers were the main selling point and the three hundred plus reproduced in this book show that you don't mess with a successful formulae.They had to show a female (unless it was for the gay market) as provocatively posed as possible with a two or three word title to complete the package.It has to be said though that the quality of these illustrations is pretty poor which only makes the work of one or two artists really stand out.Robert Bonfils, in particular, consistently turned out quality art and sleaze artists like Stanton, Bilbrew and Bill Ward were made for this market.No cover design could be too tacky for this publishing genre.

The bulk of the book are the cover reproductions (each with date, publisher, author and artist credits) with several short essays in the front.The two about soft core publishing on the East and West coasts were interesting because they actually explain the background to the publishers and more importantly how the books were distributed through the network of adult book stores in most cities and towns.The back has a useful list of publishers and authors pseudonyms.I was slightly disappointed with the books production though, there is no real page design, paragraphs are excessively long and columns just fall short because no one bothered to make adjustments to the picture sizes to compensate.Despite this 'Sin-a-rama' will probably be the only book to comprehensively cover the publishing world of paperback sleaze.

5-0 out of 5 stars An eye-opening visual survey
Sin-A-Rama: Sleaze Sex Paperbacks of the Sixties is a full-color gallery of paperback cover artwork from "sleazy" sex-themed paperback books of the 1960's. An introduction surveys the industry and history behind such publications, but most of the text within Sin-A-Rama consists of excerpts from the paperbacks themselves. The covers, done in the realism style with muted shades so common in the 60's, are often quite revealing; bare breasts and nipples are not uncommon, as are a number of kinky, if exaggerated situations. An eye-opening visual survey of the sensuality marketed to popular American culture during the era of the sexual revolution.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great historical & pictorial depiction of sleaze paperbacks!
Sin-A-Rama is the only book on this subject on the market today.Sure, there have been plenty of books discussing the 1940's/1950's pulp paperbacks (sci fi, mystery, etc titles) but this is the only one thus far to delve into the realm of the taboo world of 1960's sleaze paperbacks!The editors do a wonderful job constructing the historical basis for these lurid gems, while also providing the reader with pages and pages of full-color pictures of these naughty novels.The book features great articles by Jay A. Gertzman, Brittany A. Daley, Earl Kemp, and Steve Gertz to name a few.Furthermore, the book features excellent reference material at the back including lists of pen names by Earl Kemp and a publisher's catalog by Brittany A. Daley. The book is also littered with interesting quotes from these rule-breaking books.I would highly advise readers to seek out this book! Oh and I don't know if's personnel ever reads these reviews but there is an error on this book's order page.The editor list is incorrect as the editors were actually (as listed on the back of the book): Brittany A. Daley, Hedi El Kholti, Earl Kemp, Miriam Linna, and Adam Parfrey.

5-0 out of 5 stars colorful, informative survey of popular paperbacks
The countless lurid, sexually suggestive pictures of the covers of the mass-market paperbacks of the decade of the 1960s are what cannot help but attract the most attention. But there's more to this retrospective than the sensationalistic covers for enthusiasts of popular culture and paperback book collectors. An inside view of the "sleaze paperback" industry of the time is recounted in essays by four writers; one of whom spent some time in jail for peddling [...]. Passages from some of the books illustrate the genre's elliptical, yet unmistakable style for dealing with the sexual subjects and scenes so the books could get by the [...] censorship. The hundreds of paperbacks identified by their covers with author, publisher, and artist in the caption are divided into main categories appealing to readers of different backgrounds and sexual fantasies. "Sick Suburb," "Butch Swish," and "Sin Revue" are some of these. Another feature beyond the pictures is 15 interviews with writers in the field. A listing of the publishers, an index of pseudonyms used by most of the writers working in the genre, and a second index of the authors real names followed by their pseudonyms are found in the back matter. All in all, a copious collection of a vein of book cover art which also has material on the genre as an area of popular culture flourishing in the 1960s and influencing the culture's regard of sexual matter and treatment of it in following decades.
... Read more

40. Sports in Society: Issues and Controversies, with Online Learning Center PowerWeb
by JayCoakley, Jay Coakley
list price: $81.25
our price: $81.25
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0072930357
Catlog: Book (2003-05-20)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Humanities/Social Sciences/Languages
Sales Rank: 194116
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Book Description

Sports in Society is the definitive text for the sports sociology course. Offering a global, issues-oriented approach, this text encourages the discussion of current sports-related controversies and helps students develop critical thinking skills. ... Read more

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