the meaning of the library a cultural history

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The Meaning Of The Library

Author : Alice Crawford
ISBN : 9781400865741
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 41. 56 MB
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From Greek and Roman times to the digital era, the library has remained central to knowledge, scholarship, and the imagination. The Meaning of the Library is a generously illustrated examination of this key institution of Western culture. Tracing what the library has meant since its beginning, examining how its significance has shifted, and pondering its importance in the twenty-first century, notable contributors—including the Librarian of Congress and the former executive director of the HathiTrust—present a cultural history of the library. In an informative introduction, Alice Crawford sets out the book's purpose and scope, and an international array of scholars, librarians, writers, and critics offer vivid perspectives about the library through their chosen fields. The Meaning of the Library will appeal to all who are interested in this vital institution's heritage and ongoing legacy.

The Patterning Instinct

Author : Jeremy Lent
ISBN : 9781633882942
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 89. 44 MB
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This fresh perspective on crucial questions of history identifies the root metaphors that cultures have used to construct meaning in their world. It offers a glimpse into the minds of a vast range of different peoples: early hunter-gatherers and farmers, ancient Egyptians, traditional Chinese sages, the founders of Christianity, trail-blazers of the Scientific Revolution, and those who constructed our modern consumer society. Taking the reader on an archaeological exploration of the mind, the author, an entrepreneur and sustainability leader, uses recent findings in cognitive science and systems theory to reveal the hidden layers of values that form today's cultural norms. Uprooting the tired clichés of the science-religion debate, he shows how medieval Christian rationalism acted as an incubator for scientific thought, which in turn shaped our modern vision of the conquest of nature. The author probes our current crisis of unsustainability and argues that it is not an inevitable result of human nature, but is culturally driven: a product of particular mental patterns that could conceivably be reshaped. By shining a light on our possible futures, the book foresees a coming struggle between two contrasting views of humanity: one driving to a technological endgame of artificially enhanced humans, the other enabling a sustainable future arising from our intrinsic connectedness with each other and the natural world. This struggle, it concludes, is one in which each of us will play a role through the meaning we choose to forge from the lives we lead. From the Hardcover edition.

Frankenstein

Author : Susan Tyler Hitchcock
ISBN : 0393061442
Genre : History
File Size : 56. 64 MB
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A lighthearted history of the Frankenstein myth traces its origins, evaluates the shifts in period morality and science that shaped the story and its various interpretations, and considers the invocations of the tale in various formats.

The Work Of The Dead

Author : Thomas W. Laqueur
ISBN : 9781400874514
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 82. 94 MB
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The Greek philosopher Diogenes said that when he died his body should be tossed over the city walls for beasts to scavenge. Why should he or anyone else care what became of his corpse? In The Work of the Dead, acclaimed cultural historian Thomas Laqueur examines why humanity has universally rejected Diogenes's argument. No culture has been indifferent to mortal remains. Even in our supposedly disenchanted scientific age, the dead body still matters—for individuals, communities, and nations. A remarkably ambitious history, The Work of the Dead offers a compelling and richly detailed account of how and why the living have cared for the dead, from antiquity to the twentieth century. The book draws on a vast range of sources—from mortuary archaeology, medical tracts, letters, songs, poems, and novels to painting and landscapes in order to recover the work that the dead do for the living: making human communities that connect the past and the future. Laqueur shows how the churchyard became the dominant resting place of the dead during the Middle Ages and why the cemetery largely supplanted it during the modern period. He traces how and why since the nineteenth century we have come to gather the names of the dead on great lists and memorials and why being buried without a name has become so disturbing. And finally, he tells how modern cremation, begun as a fantasy of stripping death of its history, ultimately failed—and how even the ashes of the victims of the Holocaust have been preserved in culture. A fascinating chronicle of how we shape the dead and are in turn shaped by them, this is a landmark work of cultural history. Some images inside the book are unavailable due to digital copyright restrictions.

A Cultural History Of Jewish Dress

Author : Eric Silverman
ISBN : 9780857852106
Genre : Design
File Size : 58. 71 MB
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A Cultural History of Jewish Dress is the first comprehensive account of how Jews have been distinguished by their appearance from Ancient Israel to the present. For centuries Jews have dressed in distinctive ways to communicate their devotion to God, their religious identity, and the proper earthly roles of men and women. This lively work explores the rich history of Jewish dress, examining how Jews and non-Jews alike debated and legislated Jewish attire in different places, as well as outlining the big debates on dress within the Jewish community today. Focusing on tensions over gender, ethnic identity and assimilation, each chapter discusses the meaning and symbolism of a specific era or type of Jewish dress. What were biblical and rabbinic fashions? Why was clothing so important to immigrant Jews in America? Why do Hassidic Jews wear black? When did yarmulkes become bar mitzvah souvenirs? The book also offers the first analysis of how young Jewish adults today announce on caps, shirts, and even undergarments their striving to transform Jewishness from a religious and historical heritage into an ethnic identity that is hip, racy, and irreverent. Fascinating and accessibly written, A Cultural History of Jewish Dress will appeal to anybody interested in the central role of clothing in defining Jewish identity.

Pain

Author : Javier Moscoso
ISBN : 9781403991188
Genre : History
File Size : 55. 83 MB
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A fascinating and highly-illustrated history of one of the most universal cultural phenomena. Javier Moscoso provides a unique and accessible examination of the formation and transformation of pain, as both a scientific and as a cultural object in modern and contemporary Western societies.

Bodies Of Inscription

Author : Margo DeMello
ISBN : 0822324679
Genre : Art
File Size : 46. 82 MB
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An ethnography of the tattoo community, tracing the practice’s transformation from a mostly male, working-class phenomenon to one adapted and propagated by a more middle-class movement in the period from the 1970s to the present.

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