reading list

Recommended Reading from First Matter

The Fifth Discipline : The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization
Peter Senge
ISBN: 0385260954
Finally in paperback, Senge's national bestseller The Fifth Discipline, which has turned the principles of the learning organization into a movement of snowballing size and strength. The ability to respond to change is the crucial issue of the '90s, but management tools such as "reengineering" and "total quality" simply treat the symptoms. Adopted by Ford, AT&T, and others, here is a cure for the disease Senge calls "learning disabilities."

Techgnosis : Myth, Magic, + Mysticism in the Age of Information
Erik Davis
ISBN: 0517704153
The Supreme Court's Chief Justice looks at the ways governments can behave during wartime -- and how they can grow oppressive during those moments.

What's Your Story?: Storytelling to Move Markets, Audiences, People, and Brands
Ryan Mathews and Watts Wacker
ISBN: 0132277425
No description

Scenario Planning : Managing for the Future
Gill Ringland
ISBN: 047197790x
A strategic management tool that helps companies create their own futures. In this book, readers learn all about powerful scenario planning tools that dramatically magnify a manager's ability to zero in on the most important emerging trends and develop sets of likely future scenarios from them. They also learn how to fashion dynamic strategies for taking advantage of whichever future emerges.

The Machine That Changed the World : The Story of Lean Production
James P. Womack, Daniel T. Jones (Contributor), Daniel Roos (Contributor)
ISBN: 0060974176
Based on MIT's five-million-dollar, five-year study on the future of the automobile, three directors of research deliver a groundbreaking analysis of the worldwide move from mass production to lean production. The authors explain lean production and reveal how it works, why it results in more cost-efficient products, and its significant global impact.

New Rules for the New Economy : 10 Radical Strategies for a Connected World
Kevin Kelly
ISBN: 0670881112
We are rushing into a world where connectivity is everything, and where old business know-how means nothing. In this new order, success flows primarily from understanding networks and networks have their own rules. In New Rules, Kevin Kelly presents 10 fundamental principles that invert the traditional wisdom of the industrial world. For example, "Plenitude, Not Scarcity." Industrial-age wisdom says value comes from scarcity. But in a network economy, value comes from abundance. Consider the "fax effect." One fax machine is worth nothing. Even a small network of fax machines is valuable. But each machine added to a fax network increases the value of all the machines on the network exponentially. The idea of plenitude is to create something that is connected to as many other products, services, and networks as possible. New Rules explains why these powerful laws are already hardwired into the new economy, and how they play out in all kinds of businesses - both low- and high- tech - all over the world. More than just a profound overview of new economic principles, New Rules prescribes many clear and specific strategies for success.

Material World : A Global Family Portrait
Peter Menzel, Charles C. Mann (Contributor), Paul Kennedy
ISBN: 0871564300
Menzel photographed average families in each of 30 nations, posed with their possessions gathered around them. As they depict the meaning of material wealth around the world, these dramatic photos ask a fundamental question: Can all five billion of us have everything we want? "A record of striking value." – Scientific American. 359 color photos.

Big Hair : A Journey into the Transformation of Self
Grant McCracken
ISBN: 0879516577 editorial review: Most people in modern Western society are obsessed with hair: hair they have, hair they don't, hair they don't want (there), the latest to-do about the do of the latest star or starlet--and yet there have been virtually no in-depth studies of hair in this culture. McCracken, a curator of ethnology, has written an insightful study of how Westerners redefine themselves by defining and redefining their 'dos, dont's, and dyes, and the fetishistic fascination with hair styles of the rich and famous. Although written primarily about women's hair, and in particular, blond hair, my entire household--men and women alike--learned a great deal from the in-depth analyses of these dead strands of protein extruding from tiny pores on our heads which nonetheless have extraordinary power in determining status and even wealth. Recommended.

Six Great Ideas
Mortimer J. Adler
ISBN: 068482681x
Each summer, Mortimer J. Adler conducts a seminar at the Aspen Institute in Colorado. At the 1981 seminar, leaders from the worlds of business, literature, education, and the arts joined him in an in-depth consideration of the six great ideas that are the subject of this book: Truth, Goodness, and Beauty - the ideas we judge by; and Liberty, Equality and Justice - the ideas we act on. The group discussions and conversations between Dr. Adler and journalist Bill Moyers were filmed for broadcast on public television, and thousands of people followed their exploration of these important ideas. Discarding the out-worn and off-putting jargon of academia, Dr. Adler dispels the myth that philosophy is the exclusive province of the specialist. He argues that "philosophy is everybody's business," and that a better understanding of these fundamental concepts is essential if we are to cope with the political, moral, and social issues that confront us daily.

Undaunted Courage : Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West
Stephen E. Ambrose
ISBN: 0684826976
The bestselling author of "D-Day" combines his extraordinary writing skill with previously unknown information about weather, terrain, science, native peoples, and the medicine of the time to describe in detail everything the Lewis and Clark expedition encountered in its quest to open the American frontier.

Fuzzy Logic : The Revolutionary Computer Technology That Is Changing Our World
Daniel McNeill, Paul Freiberger
ISBN: 0671875353
Imagine a technology so revolutionary that it gives computers the ability to make decisions more like human beings. Professor Lofti Zadeh masterminded "fuzzy logic"--a way of programming computers to "make decisions" bases on imprecise data and complex situations. In Fuzzy Logic, Daniel McNeill and Paul Freiberger relate the compelling tale of this remarkable new technology, the genius who brought it to life, and how it will soon affect the lives of every one of us.

Fuzzy Thinking : The New Science of Fuzzy Logic
Bart Kosko
ISBN: 078688021X
A washing machine that gauges each load to determine how much soap to use? An air conditioner that constantly adjusts cooling strength based on room temperature? These "smart" products are possible with the advent of "fuzzy logic, " the principle that's revolutionizing science. Now, its chief proponent presents a brilliant, popular account of the field called the "new chaos."

Golf in the Kingdom
Michael Murphy
ISBN: 0140195491
When a young man en route to India stops in Scotland to play at the legendary Burningbush golf club, his life is transformed. Paired with a mysterious teacher named Shivas Irons, he is led through a round of phenomenal golf, swept into a world where extraordinary powers are unleashed in a backswing governed by "true gravity." A night of adventure and revelation follows, and leads to a glimpse of Seamus MacDuff, the holy man who haunts a ravine off Burningbush's thirteenth fairway - the one they call Lucifer's Rug.

Homo Ludens : A Study of the Play Element in Culture
Johan Huizinga
ISBN: 0807046817
Discusses the cultural phenomenon of the human play instincts and play acting in modern western society.

The Hero With A Thousand Faces
Joseph Campbell
ISBN: 0691017840
Despite their infinite variety of incident, setting, and costume, the myths of the world offer only a limited number of responses to the riddle of life. In this best-selling volume, Joseph Campbell presents the composite hero. Through Campbell's eyes, we see Apollo, the Frog King of the fairy tale, Wotan, the Buddha, and numerous other protagonists of folklore and religion enacting simultaneously the various phases of their common story.Campbell begins his interpretation of these timeless symbols by examining their relationship to those rediscovered in dreams by depth psychology. The psychological view is then compared with the words of such spiritual leaders as Moses, Jesus, Mohammed, Lao-tse, and the "Old Men" of the Australian tribes. From behind a thousand faces, the single hero emerges, archetype of all myth.

Digital Harmony : Business, Technology & Life After Paperwork
Arno Penzias
ISBN: 088730785X
Beginning with an examination of the key technological developments of the past decade, this book also looks at the future and to the changes ahead in the business and technological fields.

Trust : The Social Virtues and the Creation of Prosperity
Francis Fukuyama
ISBN: 0684825252
In his bestselling The End of History and the Last Man, Francis Fukuyama argued that the end of the Cold War would also mean the beginning of a struggle for position in the rapidly emerging order of 21st-century capitalism. In Trust, a penetrating assessment of the emerging global economic order "after History," he explains the social principles of economic life and tells us what we need to know to win the coming struggle for world dominance.

The Living Company : Growth, Learning and Longevity in Business
Arie De Geus
ISBN: 087584782X editorial review: The average life span of a Fortune 500 company is less than half a century, yet there also are corporations around the world that have been in business for 200, 500, even 700 years. Arie de Geus, a retired Royal Dutch/Shell Group executive, maintains after studying both extremes that the most enduring treat their companies as "living work communities" rather than pure economic machines. The Living Company: Habits for Survival in a Turbulent Business Environment persuasively outlines his resultant prescription for organizational longevity.

Europe : A History - A Glorious Chronicle of the Full History of Europe, from Kings to Peasants, from the Urals to the Faroes
Norman Davies
ISBN: 0060974680
From the ice age to the Cold War, from Reykjavik to the Volga, from Minos to Margaret Thatcher, Norman Davies here tells the entire history of Europe in one single volume. The narrative zooms in from the distant focus of Chapter One, which explores the first five million years of the continent's development, to the close focus of the last two chapters, which cover the twentieth century at roughly one page per year. In between, Norman Davies presents a vast canvas packed with startling detail and thoughtful analysis. Alongside Europe's better-known stories - human, national and international - he examines subjects often spurned or neglected - Europe's stateless nations, for example, as well as the nation-states and great powers, and the minority groups from heretics and lepers to Romanies, Jews, and Muslims. He reveals not only the rich diversity of Europe's past but also the numerous prisms through which it can be viewed.

Maslow On Management
Abraham H. Maslow
ISBN: 0471247804
The pioneer behind the hierarchy of needs and the concept of self-actualization, Dr. Abraham Maslow was - and is - one of the world's most esteemed experts on human behavior and motivation. Bringing into perspective the lasting impact of Maslow's groundbreaking principles, Maslow on Management illustrates how they have withstood the test of time to become integral components of current management practices, such as continuous improvement, Theory X, and empowerment. Offering insight into using these and other tools to effectively tackle present-day business situations, from heightened competitiveness to globalization to emerging technologies, Maslow on Management covers a wealth of timeless topics.

Generations : The History of America's Future, 1584 to 2069
William Strauss, Neil Howe (Contributor)
ISBN: 0688119123
Hailed by national leaders as politically diverse as Senator Albert Gore and Representative Newt Gingrich, Generations has been heralded by reviewers as a brilliant, if somewhat unsettling, reassessment of where America is heading. William Strauss and Neil Howe posit the history of America as a succession of generational biographies, beginning in 1584 and encompassing everyone though the children of today. Their bold theory is that each generation belongs to one of four types, and that these types repeat sequentially in a fixed pattern. The vision of Generations allows us to plot a recurring cycle in American history - a cycle of spiritual awakenings and secular crises - from the founding colonials through the present day and on into the next millennium. Generations is at once a refreshing historical narrative and a thrilling intuitive leap that reorders not only our history books but also our expectations for the twenty-first century.

The Timetables of History : A Horizontal Linkage of People and Events
Bernard Grun, Daniel J. Boorstin
ISBN: 067174271X
The classic history reference, brough completely up to date, linking more than 30,000 events in an overview of 7,000 years of civilization. The Timetables of History is an indispensable resource that distills the essence of civilization, highlighting significant moments in history, politics, philosophy, religion, art, science and technology. 2 color throughout.

Envisioning Information
Edward R. Tufte
ISBN: 0961392118
Review From Kevin Kelly: Buy this book. Keep it with the few others you have that you'll pass on to the next generation. It is a passionate, elegant revelation of how to render the three dimensions of experience into the two dimensions of paper or screen. As in his previous classic, The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, Tufte is promoting a new standard of visual literacy. This latest book (immaculately printed in 23 colors) is a lyrical primer of design strategies for reading and creating messages in ‘flatland’. No other book has been so highly recommended to us by so many varieties of professional -- architects, teachers, technicians, hackers, and artists. -- Whole Earth Review

Godel Escher Bach : An Eternal Golden Braid
Douglas Hofstadter
ISBN: 0465026567
This groundbreaking Pulitzer Prize-winning book sets the standard for interdisciplinary writing, exploring the patterns and symbols in the thinking of mathematician Kurt Godel, artist M.C. Escher, and composer Johann Sebastian Bach.

A Freethinker's A-Z of the New World of Business: The Capstone Business Catalog
by Stuart Crainer (Editor), Joel Kurtzman (Editor), Watts Wacker (Editor)
ISBN: 1841120146
No description

Trickster Makes This World : Mischief, Myth and Art
Lewis Hyde
ISBN: 0865475369
Lewis Hyde's ambitious and captivating Trickster Makes This World brings to life the playful and disruptive side of the human imagination as it is embodied in the trickster mythology. Most at home on the road or at the twilight edge of town, tricksters are consummate boundary-crossers, slipping through keyholes, breaching walls, subverting defense systems. Always out to satisfy their inordinate appetites, lying, cheating, and stealing, tricksters are a great bother to have around, but paradoxically they are also indispensable culture heroes. In North America, Coyote taught the race how to dress, sing, and shoot arrows. In West Africa, Eshu discovered the art of divination so that suffering humans might know the purposes of heaven. In Greece, Hermes the Thief invented the art of sacrifice, the trick of making fire, and even language itself. Hyde revisits these old stories, then holds them up against the life and work of more recent creators: Picasso, Marcel Duchamp, John Cage, Allen Ginsberg, Maxine Hong Kingston, Frederick Douglass, and others.

Virtual History : Alternatives and Counterfactuals
Niall Ferguson
ISBN: 0333647289
Review From Booknews: Following an extensive introduction by Ferguson (history, Jesus College, Oxford) to the study of counterfactual history, he and eight other British and American scholars offer descriptions of the possibilities of history. Incorporating significant research to answer questions such as "What if there was no American Revolution?" and "What if Germany had invaded Britain in May 1940?," these historians explore what could have been, with interesting results. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

The Corporate Fool
David Firth, Alan Leigh
ISBN: 1900961512
Our organizations are in trouble. Beset on all sides by pressure: competitive pressure, market pressure, social pressure, and just plain pressure pressure. As we look at the poeple in these organizations we see them rotating in a busy, helpless dance - the Jig of Despair - desperately trying to improve the way things are done in the future but constrained by the way things are done now. Now, with the radical advance of technology, with open systems and transparent connectivity, with global interface nad network-centricity, there is a feeling that perhaps, just perhaps, things might shift: we might break out of the dance. But this will only happen if we stimulate the dancers to change their steps - to become more open, createive and balanced themselves. This is the essential, wondrous role of a new business professional, the voice of the Third Millennium, the Corporate Fool.

Inauthentic Culture and Its Philosophical Critics
Jay Newman
ISBN: 0773516913
Despite the pervasive feeling that much of the culture of Western democracies has increasingly become inauthentic or phoney, contemporary cultural critics and observers have paid little attention to the traditional philosophical criticism of inauthentic culture that began with Socrates. Aristophanes, and Plato and was applied, reworked, and extended by such philosophical cultural critics as St Augustine, Erasmus, Voltaire, Nietzsche, and Thorstein Veblen. This new study in the philosophy of culture and the history of ideas illuminates the problem of inauthentic culture and draws on the insights of major figures from the Western intellectual tradition to show that our contemporary problem is actually an old and enduring one. Inauthentic Culture and Its Philosophical Critics will be of great interest to all those concerned with philosophy, cultural theory, and the enduring problem of cultural decline.

The Ascent of Man
Jacob Bronowski
ISBN: 0316109339
Lauded by critics and devoured by countless readers as a companion to the acclaimed PBS series, this work traces the development of science as an expression of the special gifts that characterize man and make him preeminent among animals. Bronowski's exciting, splendidly illustrated investigation offers a new perspective not just on science, but on civilization itself. Photographs.

Civilization: A Personal View
Lord Kenneth Clark
ISBN: 0060907878
No description

The Fifties
David Halberstam
ISBN: 0449909336
The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Best and the Brightest, The Powers That Be, and The Reckoning has created his masterpiece--a stunning, panoramic view of a pivotal and popular American decade. From Ike to Elvis, McCarthy to Marlon Brando, all the people and phenomena of that fabulous time are captured in Halberstam style. 32-page photo insert.

Brand Soul : How Cause Related Marketing Builds Brands
Hamish Pringle and Marjorie Thompson
ISBN: 047198776X
Cause Related Marketing (CRM) can be defined as a strategic positioning tool which links a company or brand to a relevant charity or cause in a partnership for mutual benefit. CRM can enhance corporate reputation, raise brand awareness, increase customer loyalty, build sales, create press coverage and more. This book explains the concept of CRM and its place within the context of current thinking on branding. Drawing on the authors' long experience in the advertising and charity industries and illustrating its concepts with relevant case histories, Brand Spirit demonstrates how a marketer can harness the power of CRM for a product, service or corporate brand.

The Experience Economy : Work Is Theatre & Every Business a Stage
B. Joseph Pine II and James H. Gilmore
ISBN: 0875848192
With The Experience Economy, Pine & Gilmore explore how successful companies — using goods as props and services as the stage — create experiences that engage customers in an inherently personal way. Why does a cup of coffee cost more at a trendy cafe than it does at the corner diner or when brewed at home? It's the value that the experience holds for the individual that determines the worth of the offering and the work of the business. From online communities to airport parking, the authors draw from a rich and varied mix of examples that showcase businesses in the midst of creating engaging experiences for both consumers and corporate customers. Make no mistake, say Pine & Gilmore: goods and services are no longer enough. Experiences are the foundation for future economic growth, and The Experience Economy is the playbook from which managers can begin to direct new performances.

Lost at Sea: The Search for Longitude
Based on the book by Dava Sobel
ISBN: 1578071305
(VHS) The quest for a reliable method to find your way at sea was one of the thorniest problems of the 1700s. It was solved, at last, by an unlikely person -- an obscure English clockmaker named John Harrison.

Why We Buy : The Science of Shopping
Paco Underhill
ISBN: 0684849135
Why We Buy is a witty and surprising report on our evolving shopping culture. This is a book about us, from moms and dads to seniors and mall rats, and what we do, and don't do, in stores, restaurants and showrooms. Why We Buy is about the struggle among merchants, marketers and increasingly knowledgeable customers for control. With humor, insight, anecdote and lots of hard data, retail anthropologist Paco Underhill leads the reader through a journey into shopping heaven and hell. For those in retailing and marketing, Why We Buy is a remarkably fresh guide, offering concrete and usable advice on how to adapt to the changing customer. For the general public, Why We Buy is a charming, funny and sometimes disconcerting mirror of who we really are.

The Next 500 Years : Life in the Coming Millennium
Adrian Berry
ISBN: 071673009X
Editorial Review from Book News, Inc. , September 1, 1996:

If the coming millennium conjures up visions of a time warp future, imagine 500 years from now! And if your imagination isn't up to the task, Berry, science correspondent for the Daily Telegraph is willing to pilot the ship toward a time when robots might replace human beings, personalities will be stored on computer disk, and newlyweds will have their choice of the Moon or Mars for a honeymoon. To make matters really scary, the predictions are based on current research information technology, agriculture, economics, and science studies which the author describes and documents in wry, witty, and persuasive prose. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.

Understanding the Message : Electric Language
Eric McLuhan
ISBN: 0312190883
Marhsall McLuhan's son, Eric, presents a collection of essays on the ever-changing world of media that represents the new modes of expression. Color photos.

Shaving the Inside of Your Skull : Crazy Wisdom for Discovering Who You Really Are
Mel Ash
ISBN: 0874778417
An instructive, proactive, and highly entertaining work of counterculture philosophy, alternative psychology and in your face spirituality, this book descibes how readers can rid themselves of limiting beliefs so that they may experience the fresh breezes of their uniqueness.

Crazy Wisdom
Wes Nisker
ISBN: 1580080405
With close to 50,000 copies in print, this book has become a backlist favorite for its offbeat philosophy and its fact-packed, frolicsome text in which everyone from Coyote to Jean-Paul Sartre, William Blake to Lao-tzu, Groucho Marx to Albert Einstein let their hair down and hold forth on religion, poetry, quantum physics, and all that good stuff. Now updated with an introduction that takes the crazy wisdom well into the next millennium.

Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory : The Dharma of Natural System (Buddhist Studies Series)
Joanna R. Macy
ISBN: 0791406377
This book brings important new dimensions to the interface between contemporary Western science and ancient Eastern wisdom. Here for the first time the concepts and insights of general systems theory are presented in tandem with those of the Buddha. The interdependence of all beings provides the context for clarifying both the role of meditative practice and guidelines for effective action on behalf of the common good.

Orbiting the Giant Hairball : A Corporate Fool's Guide to Surviving With Grace
Gordon MacKenzie
ISBN: 0670879835
Gordon MacKenzie worked at Hallmark Cards for thirty years, where he inspired his colleagues to slip the bonds of Corporate Normalcy and rise to orbit - to a mode of dreaming, daring, and doing above and beyond the rubber-stamp confines of the administrative mind-set. In his deeply funny book, exuberantly illustrated in full color, he shares lessons on awakening and fostering creative genius. He teaches how to emerge from the "giant hairball" - that tangled, impenetrable mass of rules, and systems, based on what worked in the past and which can lead to mediocrity in the present.

The 100 : A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History
Michael H. Hart
ISBN: 0806513500
Hart's controversial book The 100 was first published in 1978. Critics objected that he not only had the nerve to select what he thought were the most influential people in history, but he even ranked them according to their importance. Hart's arguments may challenge and perhaps convince readers, but his manner is certainly both informative and entertaining. Photos and drawings throughout.

Management of the Absurd : Paradoxes in Leadership
Richard Farson, Michael Crichton
ISBN: 0684830442
A Business Week bestseller, this original, contrarian philosophy challenges today's leaders to look past the quick fix and deal thoughtfully with the real complexities of managing people.

Guns, Germs, and Steel : The Fates of Human Societies
Jared Diamond
ISBN: 0393317552
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize. In this "artful, informative, and delightful" (William H. McNeill, New York Review of Books) book, Jared Diamond convincingly argues that geographical and environmental factors shaped the modern world. Societies that had had a head start in food production advanced beyond the hunter-gatherer stage, and then developed religion --as well as nasty germs and potent weapons of war --and adventured on sea and land to conquer and decimate preliterate cultures. A major advance in our understanding of human societies, Guns, Germs, and Steel chronicles the way that the modern world came to be and stunningly dismantles racially based theories of human history. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science, the Rhone-Poulenc Prize, and the Commonwealth club of California's Gold Medal.

The Visionary's Handbook : Nine paradoxes that will shape the future of your business
Watts Wacker, Jim Taylor, Howard Means
ISBN: 0066619874
No description

Man's Search for Meaning
Viktor E. Frankl
ISBN: 0807014265
Dr. Frankl's account of survival in the Nazi death camps and his unique approach to psychotherapy, known as logotherapy.

The Arcades Project
Walter Benjamin
ISBN: 067404326X
The Arcades Project is Benjamin's effort to represent and to critique the bourgeois experience of nineteenth-century history, and, in so doing, to liberate the suppressed "true history" that underlay the ideological mask. In the bustling, cluttered arcades, street and interior merge and historical time is broken up into kaleidoscopic distractions and displays of ephemera. Here, at a distance from what is normally meant by "progress," Benjamin finds the lost time(s) embedded in the spaces of things.

The Social Life of Information
John Seely Brown and Paul Duguid
ISBN: 0875847625
To see the future we can build with information technology, we must look beyond mere information to the social context that creates and gives meaning to it.

The Symbiotic Man: A New Understanding of the Organization of Life and a Vision of the Future
Joel de Rosnay
ISBN: 0071357440
In this elegant and ambitious book, organic chemist and accomplished polymath Joel de Rosnay, shows how the sciences of complexity--the study of self-organization and the evolution of complex systems--coupled with the power of modern computing, have ripened into tool powerful enough to help us understand the systems of which we are a part. He demonstrates how nature progresses when structures and functions combine into higher-order assemblies: cells into organisms, organisms into populations, populations into ecosystems. This progression is giving rise to what de Rosnay calls the cybion, a planetary macro-organism consisting of all people and machines, organisms, networks, and nations.

Knowledge Value Revolution : Or a History of the Future
Taichi Sakaiya
ISBN: 4770017022
The provocative Japanese bestseller prophesying a new economic and social value system for the coming millennium. Sakaiya believes that a knowledge-value revolution will unfold as each advanced national faced the flexibility to cope with an utter transformation of its moral standards.

Lead Us into Temptation : The Triumph of American Materialism
James B. Twitchell
ISBN: 0231115180
We live in a commercial age, awash in a sea of brand names, logos, and advertising jingles - not to mention commodities themselves. Are shoppers merely the unwitting stooges of the greedy producers who will stop at nothing to sell their wares? Are the producers' powers of persuasion so great that resistance is futile? James Twitchell counters this assumption of the used and abused consumer with a witty and unflinching look at commercial culture, starting from the simple observation that "we are powerfully attracted to the world of goods (after all, we don't call them 'bads')." He contends that far from being forced upon us against our better judgment, "consumerism is our better judgment." Using elements as disparate as the film The Jerk, French theorists, popular bumper stickers, and Money magazine to explore the nature and importance of advertising lingo, packaging, fashion, and "The Meaning of Self," Twitchell overturns one stodgy social myth after another. In the process he reveals the purchase and possession of things to be the self-identifying acts of modern life.

The Coming Biotech Age : The Business of Bio-Materials
Richard W. Oliver
ISBN: 0071350209
"The age of Biotech is dawning," says BusinessWeek. Here's how companies will benefit from the coming revolution in biotechnology. Biotech companies are quickly becoming the new economic engines of growth and innovation--and when they explode, the Internet revolution will look like small potatoes. Businesses must prepare now for the post-information Biotech Age, and this is the book that will get them ready. Richard Oliver, author of the acclaimed The Shape of Things to Come, has created the first practical guide to the Biotech Age. Rather than focusing on science or social issues, he presents an accessible overview of the business of biotechnology and its vast implications and opportunities for all types of industries. Like the Internet, this is a topic few can afford to miss out on--especially future-minded executives and investors in cutting-edge technologies.

The Physics of Consciousness : Quantum Minds and the Meaning of Life
Evan Harris Walker
ISBN: 0738202347
For decades, neuroscientists, psychologists, and an army of brain researchers have been struggling, in vain, to explain the phenomenon of consciousness. Now there is a clear trail to the answer, and it leads through the dense jungle of quantum physics, Zen, and subjective experience, and arrives at an unexpected destination. In this tour-de-force of scientific investigation, Evan Harris Walker, a pioneer in the science of consciousness, describes the outcome of his fifty-year search for the true nature of reality. Drawing on a deep knowledge of quantum physics and Zen philosophy, Walker shows how the operation of bizarre yet actual properties of elementary particles support a new and exciting theory of reality, based on the principles of quantum physics; a theory that answers questions such as "What is the nature of consciousness, of will?" "What is the source of material reality?" and "What is God?" Clearly written in non-technical, lyrical prose, The Physics of Consciousness is more than just the explanation of a science-it is a new vision of life.

Still Here : Embracing Aging, Changing, and Dying
Ram Dass
ISBN: 1573220493
The man who blazed the spiritual trail for his generation brings his wisdom and humor to the path that takes us to the end of life and beyond. As we enter the later stages of life, the big questions of peace and of purpose have reappeared, this time demanding answers. Our old friend Ram Dass has returned, inviting us to join him on the next stage of the journey. With him we explore the joy, pain, and opportunities of the ripening seasons of our lives. Writing with his trademark humor and wisdom, sharing stories from his own life and meditation exercises to integrate the teachings, Ram Dass once again provides a new perspective on the territory that lies ahead.

Bowling Alone : The Collapse and Revival of American Community
Robert D. Putnam
ISBN: 0684832836
This may be one of the best books on American community I've ever read. -- Ryan Mathews Once we bowled in leagues, usually after work; but no longer. This seemingly small phenomenon symbolizes a significant social change that Robert Putnam has identified and describes in this brilliant volume, Bowling Alone.

Out of Control : The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems and the Economic World
Kevin Kelly
ISBN: 0201483408
In a book about the marriage of the born and the made -- the biologicalization of everything from computers to government -- the executive editor of Wired chronicles the dawn of a new era in which the machines and systems that dri ve our economy are so complex and autonomous as to be indistinguishable from living things.

The Myth of Excellence : How Great Companies Never Try to Be the Best at Everything
Ryan Mathews and Fred Crawford
ISBN: 0609608207
No description

The Deviant's Advantage: How Fringe Ideas Create Mass Markets
Ryan Mathews and Watts Wacker
ISBN: 0609609580
No description

The 500 Year Delta : What Happens After What Comes Next (audio)
Watts Wacker and Jim Taylor with Howard Means
ISBN: 0694518603
No description

The 500 Year Delta : What Happens After What Comes Next (ebook)
Jim Taylor, Watts Wacker & Howard Means
ISBN: 190096130x
No description

Signs of Life: How Complexity Pervades Biology
Ricard Solé and Brian Goodwin
ISBN: 0465019277
Signs of Life applies complexity to the whole of biology-from molecules to Gaia-and sets a revolutionary new agenda for complexity theory, evolution, and developmentSigns of Life is an entirely new approach to the problems of understanding living systems. It applies the mathematics of order and disorder, of entropy, chance, and randomness, of chaos and nonlinear dynamics to the various mysteries of the living world at all levels. Less a set of answers than a guide to thinking about living systems, this book will help set the agenda for biology in the coming century.

Extraordinary Popular Delusions & the Madness of Crowds
Charles MacKay, Andrew Tobias
ISBN: 051788433X
Why do otherwise intelligent individuals form seething masses of idiocy when they engage in collective action? Why do financially sensible people jump lemming-like into hare-brained speculative frenzies--only to jump broker-like out of windows when their fantasies dissolve? We may think that the Great Crash of 1929, junk bonds of the '80s, and over-valued high-tech stocks of the '90s are peculiarly 20th century aberrations, but Mackay's classic--first published in 1841--shows that the madness and confusion of crowds knows no limits, and has no temporal bounds. These are extraordinarily illuminating, and, unfortunately, entertaining tales of chicanery, greed and naivete. Essential reading for any student of human nature or the transmission of ideas.

The Visionary's Handbook : Nine paradoxes that will shape the future of your business (paperback)
Watts Wacker, Jim Taylor, Howard Means
ISBN: 0066619882
No description

The Time Falling Bodies Take to Light : Mythology, Sexuality, and the Origins of Culture
William Irwin Thompson
ISBN: 0312160623
In the opening passages of his classic book, The Time Falling Bodies Take to Light, William Irwin Thompson asks the question, "But what is myth that it returns to mind even when we would most escape it?" Acknowledging the pervasive power of myth to create and inform culture, Thompson answers this question by weaving descriptions of the human abilities to create life and to communicate through symbolic myths based on male and female forms of power. Taking us from the earliest periods of prehistory through the time of female goddess worship to the rise of the male-dominated warrior state, Thompson shows the passage of humankind's relationship to nature from initial awe to persistent conquest. At the end of his journey, Thompson finds an answer to his original question: myth is the history of the soul; its creation is ongoing and its power is never-ending. This is a beautiful and fascinating book now being reissued for a new generation of readers, as well as for those it inspired originally.

Papal Sin : Structures of Deceit
Garry Wills
ISBN: 0385494106
From Pulitzer Prize-winning author Garry Wills comes an assured, acutely insightful--and occasionally stinging--critique of the Catholic Church and its hierarchy from the nineteenth century to the present.

Lo Que Se Viene... y Despuis: Profecias Para la Sociedad y las Empresas del Siglo XXI
Jim Taylor, Watts Wacker, Howard Means
ISBN: 9506412634
No description

The Financial Times Handbook of Management
Stuart Crainer (editor) and Des Dearlove (editor)
ISBN: 0273643509
More than ever before, Management is perplexing and challenging. The Financial Times Handbook of Management captures the state of this indispensible, inspiring, invigorating and essential art. The handbook is the essential management reference for the managers of today. It brings together the most ambitious, comprehensive and authoritative selection of ideas, practices and management thinking. It captures a world of management expertise and delivers it to your desktop in a single, definitive resource. Contributors include: Marcus Alexander on global advantage, Paul Argenti on the communication advantage, Warren Bennis on the new leadership, David W Birchall on what managers do, William Byham on succession planning, Richard D'Aveni on strategic supremacy, G Bruce Friesen on empowerment, Thomas Gad on brands with a future, Vijay Govindarajan & Anil K Gupta on managing internationally, H David Hennessey on emergent issues in global marketing, Shere Hite on power and influence, John Kay on strategy and control, W Chan Kim & Renee Mauborgne on strategy in the knowledge economy, Jesper Kunde on corporate religion, Richard Lamming on supply chain management, Dr Peter Lorange on international joint ventures, Costas Markides on strategy, D Quinn Mills on empowerment, Narayany Naik on the roles of financial markets, Kjell Nordstrom & Jonas Ridderstrale on Funky Inc., Richard Scase on work beyond 2010, Paul Strebel on high speed strategy in large companies, Donald N Sull on the new economy as a values shift, Fons Trompenaars on globization strategies, Sandra Vandermerwe on capturing lifetime customer value, Romesh Vaitilingam on corporate restructuring, Watts Wacker on understanding brand potential, Randall White & Phil Hodgsonon leadership role models, Luigi Zingales on the value of being in control. There is also extensive coverage and analysis of the work of many major gurus such as Tom Peters, Gary Hamel and Charles Handy.

Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage
Alfred Lansing
ISBN: 078670621X
In the summer of 1914, Sir Ernest Shackleton set off aboard the Endurance bound for the South Atlantic. The goal of his expedition was to cross the Antarctic overland, but more than a year later, and still half a continent away from the intended base, the Endurance was trapped in ice and eventually was crushed. For five months Shackleton and his crew survived on drifting ice packs in one of the most savage regions of the world before they were finally able to set sail again in one of the ship's lifeboats. Alfred Lansing's Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage is a white-knuckle account of this astounding odyssey. Through the diaries of team members and interviews with survivors, Lansing reconstructs the months of terror and hardship the Endurance crew suffered. In October of 1915, there "were no helicopters, no Weasels, no Sno-Cats, no suitable planes. Thus their plight was naked and terrifying in its simplicity. If they were to get out--they had to get themselves out." How Shackleton did indeed get them out without the loss of a single life is at the heart of Lansing's magnificent true-life adventure tale.

Business : The Ultimate Resource
over 170 contributing authors
ISBN: 0738202428
No description

Moon Shot: The inside Story of America's Race to the Moon
Alan B. Shepard, Jr., Deke Slayton
ISBN: 1570361673
The never-before-told story of the courage, dedication, and teamwork that made the journey to the moon possible--an intense human drama of the sacrifices and risks asked of a remarkable group of astronauts. Shepard and Slayton, part of the pioneering space program from the beginning, tell this fascinating inside story. 32 pages of photos.

The Rise of the Creative Class: And How It's Transforming Work, Leisure, Community and Everyday Life
Richard Florida
ISBN: 0465024769
A maverick urbanist looks at the growing influence of today's newest "Creative Class" and offers innovative and practical lessons for business and workers. Many writers have commented on the massive social changes of the past few decades, but most of them have treated these shifts as something imposed on us, by technology or the marketplace. This is wrong, says Richard Florida: we've chosen to alter our values, work, and lifestyle, and for good economic reasons. Why have we done this?

War's End: An Eyewitness Account of America's Last Atomic Mission
James A. Antonucci, Marion K. Antonucci (Contributor), Charles W. Sweeney
ISBN: 0380788748
On August 9,1945, on the tiny island of Tinian in the South Pacific, a twenty-five-year-old American Army Air Corps Major named Charles W. Sweeney climbed aboard a B-29 Superfortress in command of his first combat mission, one devised specifically to bring a long and terrible war to a necessary conclusion. In the belly of his bomber, the Bock's Car, was a newly developed, fully armed weapon that had never been tested in a combat situation--a weapon capable of a level of destruction never before dreamed of in the history of the human race...a bomb whose terrifying aftershock would ultimately determine the direction of the twentieth century and change the world forever. The last military officer to command an atomic mission, Maj. Gen. Charles W. Sweeney has the unique distinction of having been an integral part of both the Hiroshima and the Nagasaki bombing runs. His book is an extraordinary chronicle of the months of careful planning and training; the set backs, secrecy and the snafus; the nerve-shattering final seconds and the astonishing aftermath of what is arguably the most significant single event in modern history: the employment of an atomic weapon during wartime.

How to Break out of Prison
John Wareham
ISBN: 1566492394
Inspired by the success of his program within New York's Riker Island Prison Complex, John Wareham has written How to Break Out of Prison, a profound work which laces penetrating insights from the lives of corporate inmates and prison inmates alike to show that all prisons are mental prisons. The book includes "The Wareham Quest", a proprietary psychological test which shows readers how to fashion a master key to unlock their personal prison gates and create the life of their dreams.

My Life in Advertising & Scientific Advertising: Two Works
Claude C. Hopkins
ISBN: 0844231010
Test marketing. Coupon sampling. Copy research. All are standard practices in today's world of advertising. All were invented by Claude C. Hopkins. This volume contains his two landmark books. Scientific Advertising—the classic primer still read by today's top copywriters—was originally written in 1923. Four years later, he finished his autobiography, My Life in Advertising. Claude C. Hopkins (1866-1932) worked for various advertisers including Bissell Carpet Sweeper Company, Swift & Company and Dr. Shoop's patent medicine company until, at the age of 41, he was hired by Albert Lasker to write copy for Lord & Thomas advertising agency (forerunner to today's Foote, Cone & Belding). He stayed for 18 years. Scientific Advertising and My Life in Advertising remain essential, vital guideposts for present and future generations of advertising professionals.

The Hero and the Outlaw: Building Extraordinary Brands through the Power of Archetypes
Margaret Mark, Carol S. Pearson
ISBN: 0071364153
Behind every great brand is a great story. In The Hero and the Outlaw, advertising guru Margaret Mark and best-selling author and psychologist Carol Pearson team up to explain how marketers can make their brands or products invincible. Mark and Pearson show you how to discover the "soul" of your brand, and then express that "soul" in ways that tap into universal stories or archetypes. By following their unique approach, anyone in business can learn how to connect with their customers more deeply and create true brand icons.

Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things
William McDonough, Michael Braungart
ISBN: 0865475873
Guided by this principle, McDonough and Braungart explain how products can be designed from the outset so that, after their useful lives, they will provide nourishment for something new. They can be conceived as "biological nutrients" that will easily reenter the water or soil without depositing synthetic materials and toxins. Or they can be "technical nutrients" that will continually circulate as pure and valuable materials within closed-loop industrial cycles, rather than being "recycled" -- really, downcycled -- into low-grade materials and uses. Drawing on their experience in (re)designing everything from carpeting to corporate campuses, McDonough and Braungart make an exciting and viable case for putting eco-effectiveness into practice, and show how anyone involved with making anything can begin to do so as well.

Behind Every Choice Is a Story
Gloria Feldt
ISBN: 1574411586
Behind Every Choice Is a Story is a unique and compelling blend of personal stories, commentary, and memoir. This book is inspired by the 1928 publication, Motherhood in Bondage, a collection of letters written by women to Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood. Each section and chapter includes dozens of excerpts from letters actually written to Gloria Feldt by patients, teachers, doctors, teenagers, mothers, and other men and women who have struggled with or been touched in some way by issues of reproductive choice. Feldt weaves these letters into her own personal story and offers historical and statistical perspectives to the reproductive health and rights movement today.

Where the Buffalo Roam: Restoring America's Great Plains
Anne Matthews, Donald Worster
ISBN: 0226510964
Pummeled by a century of drought, depopulation, and soil erosion, America's Great Plains are in dire straits. With farms closing left and right, large parts of the region now have about the population they had in frontier days. Frank and Deborah Popper have a solution: create a Buffalo Commons by returning 139,000 square miles in ten states to prairie and reintroducing the buffalo that once roamed there. Where the Buffalo Roam follows the Poppers from Montana to Texas as they try to sell their idea in seminar rooms and small-town living rooms, cattle lots, and cornfields. In the process Anne Matthews introduces the colorful people who love these arid windswept lands, from the mild-mannered but persistent Poppers to suspicious ranchers and farmers with their backs to the wall. Donald Worster's new foreword situates the Buffalo Commons in the context of environmental history and, in a substantial new afterword, Matthews brings us up to date on the latest Commons developments, including growing support from Native Americans and private groups like the Nature Conservancy.

Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal
Eric Schlosser
ISBN: 0060938455
Fast food has hastened the malling of our landscape, widened the chasm between rich and poor, fueled an epidemic of obesity, and propelled American cultural imperialism abroad. That's a lengthy list of charges, but Eric Scholsser makes them stick with an artful mix of first-rate reportage, wry wit, and careful reasoning. Schlosser's myth-shattering survey stretches from California's subdivisions, where the business was born, to the industrial corridor along the New Jersey Turnpike, where many of fast food's flavors are concocted. Along the way, he unearths a trove of fascinating, unsettling truths -- from the unholy alliance between fast food and Hollywood to the seismic changes the industry has wrought in food production, popular culture, and even real estate.

Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order
Steven H. Strogatz
ISBN: 0786868449
To synchronize is one of the deepest and most far-reaching drives in all of nature, extending from atoms to molecules to people to planets to galaxies. Sync is the story of this deep music of the spheres and of synchrony, the new science that it has spawned. Penned by a Cornell University professor of applied mathematics, this book possesses both mainstream appeal and a sound scientific grounding.

Smart Mobs: The Next Social Revolution: Transforming Cultures and Communities in the Age of Instant Access
Howard Rheingold
ISBN: 0738206083
How the convergence of mobile communications and computing is driving the next social revolution-transforming the ways in which people meet, mate, work, buy, sell, govern, and create. When Howard Rheingold sneaks off down an untrodden trail, everyone else follows. He is always onto something marvelous no one has seen before. An ever-considerate guide, he navigates this new world with ease, compassion, and grace, and gives you the inside story, with no punches pulled. Tech talk? Howard could get your mother to understand. From Tokyo to Helsinki, Manhattan to Manila, Howard Rheingold takes us on a journey around the world for a preview of the next techno-cultural shift-a shift he predicts will be as dramatic as the widespread adoption of the PC in the 1980s and the Internet in the 1990s. The coming wave, says Rheingold, is the result of super-efficient mobile communications-cellular phones, personal digital assistants, and wireless-paging and Internet-access devices that will allow us to connect with anyone, anywhere, anytime. From the amusing ("Lovegetty" devices in Japan that light up when a person with the right date-potential characteristics appears in the vicinity) to the extraordinary (the overthrow of a repressive regime in the Philippines by political activists who mobilized by forwarding text messages via cell phones), Rheingold gives examples of the fundamentally new ways in which people are already engaging in group or collective action. He also considers the dark side of this phenomenon, such as the coordination of terrorist cells, threats to privacy, and the ability to incite violent behavior. Applying insights from sociology, artificial intelligence, engineering, and anthropology, Rheingold offers a penetrating perspective on the brave new convergence of pop culture, cutting-edge technology, and social activism. At the same time, he reminds us that, as with other technological revolutions, the real impact of mobile communications will come not from the technology itself but from how people use it, resist it, adapt to it, and ultimately use it to transform themselves, their communities, and their institutions. Author Biography: Howard Rheingold is one of the world's foremost authorities on the social implications of technology. Over the past twenty years he has traveled around the world, observing and writing about emerging trends in computing, communications, and culture. One of the creators and former founding executive editor of HotWired, he has served as editor of The Whole Earth Review, editor-in-chief of The Millennium Whole Earth Catalog, and on-line host for The Well. The author of several books, including The Virtual Community, Virtual Reality, and Tools for Thought, he lives in Mill Valley, California.

The Dictionary of Imaginary Places: The Newly Updated and Expanded Classic
Alberto Manguel, Gianni Guadalupi
ISBN: 0151005419
From Atlantis to Xanadu, this Baedeker of make-believe takes readers on a tour of more than 1,200 realms invented by storytellers from Homer's day to our own. Most every fanciful world from books and film is included: Shangri-La and El Dorado are here, as is Utopia, Tolkien's Middle-earth, and Carroll's Wonderland, as well as the Beatles' Pepperland, the Marx Brothers' Freedonia, and a strange little town called Stepford. The history and behavior of the inhabitants of these lands are described in detail and supplemented by more than 220 maps and illustrations that depict the lay of the land in a host of elsewheres. Now brought up-to-date with dozens of new entries for such places as Jurassic Park, Salman Rushdie's Sea of Stories, and Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, this volume is even more comprehensive and entertaining.

Futopia oder das Globalisierungsparadies. Die Welt in 500 Tagen, Wochen, Monaten, Jahren.
Watts Wacker, Jim Taylor, Howard Means, Jacqueline Csuss (Übersetzer)
ISBN: 3854362323
No description

Bunte Hunde. Mit abseitigen Ideen zum Erfolg.
Ryan Mathews, Watts Wacker
ISBN: 3203801469
No description

The Deviant's Advantage: How to Use Fringe Ideas to Create Mass Markets (paperback)
Watts Wacker, Ryan Mathews
ISBN: 1400050006
From Publishers Weekly Consultants (and "futurists") Mathews and Wacker present a book about cashing in on weird ideas. Defining deviance as "something or someone operating in a defined measure away from the norm," the authors examine the transformation that takes fringe ideas-such as jazz, holistic medicine, and even personal computing-into mass markets. They use examples such as Virgin mogul Richard Branson (whom they call a "poster boy" for deviance, because of his notion that everyday people should be able to have a lifestyle that would normally be closed to them) to show the process of taking a peripheral idea mainstream and applying it to one's business, even addressing the inevitable occurrence of the once-fringe idea becoming cliché. Although laden with trendy made-up words, e.g., "devox" and "prescreen," Mathews's and Wacker's intriguing book is a fun mix of business savvy and social commentary that will surely appeal to the Fast Company crowd.

The Progress Paradox: How Life Gets Better While People Feel Worse
Gregg Easterbrook
ISBN: 0679463038
In The Progress Paradox, Gregg Easterbrook draws upon three decades of wide-ranging research and thinking to make the persuasive assertion that almost all aspects of Western life have vastly improved in the past century -- and yet today, most men and women feel less happy than in previous generations. Why this is so and what we should do about it is the subject of this book. Between contemporary emphasis on grievances and the fears engendered by 9/11, today it is common to hear it said that life has started downhill, or that our parents had it better. But objectively, almost everyone in today's United States or European Union lives better than his or her parents did. Still, studies show that the percentage of the population that is happy has not increased in fifty years, while depression and stress have become ever more prevalent. The Progress Paradox explores why ever-higher living standards don't seem to make us any happier. Detailing the emerging science of "positive psychology," which seeks to understand what causes a person's sense of well-being, Easterbrook offers an alternative to our culture of crisis and complaint. He makes a compelling case that optimism, gratitude, and acts of forgiveness not only make modern life more fulfilling but are actually in our self-interest. Seemingly insoluble problems of the past, such as crime in New York City and smog in Los Angeles, have proved more tractable than they were thought to be. Likewise, today's "impossible" problems, such as global warming and Islamic terrorism, can be tackled too. Like The Tipping Point, this book offers an affirming and constructive way of seeing the world anew. The Progress Paradox will change the way you think about your place in the world, and about our collective ability to make it better.

Business, The Universe and Everything: Conversations with the World's Greatest Management Thinkers
Stuart Crainer, Des Dearlove
ISBN: 1841125628
This book includes an interview with Watts Wacker. Ever wondered if Tom Peters has considered writing a sequel to In Search of Excellence? Or what Daniel Goleman thinks our business leaders should be doing about their Emotional Intelligence? Did you know that scenarios maestro Peter Schwartz worked on the visions for the future in the Hollywood blockbusters Deep Impact and Minority Report? What's the idea behind Kjell Nordstrom's global tribe? All these questions and many others are posed and answered in Business, The Universe and Everything. Business thinking and best practice is in a constant state of flux. In the business world, ideas change the way we do things, and they are constantly being changed themselves. Of course, the practical usefulness of many ideas is questionable and making things happen is more difficult than the idea may suggest. While there may be nothing so practical as a neat theory, you still have to find the right theory. This book will not turn a bad business into a good business. Nor will it turn a bad businessperson into an entrepreneurial genius. Life and business life isn't like that. Business, The Universe and Everything is awash with bright ideas. The fascinating collection of interviews gives you first-hand insights from some of the world's most brilliant and compelling business thinkers, offering you a smorgasbord of business ideas. You are free to pick and choose the ideas that resonate most with you, but remember that in the end, ideas are nothing without application.

The Shield of Achilles: The Long War and the Market State
Philip Bobbitt
ISBN: 0385721382
"We are at a moment in world affairs when the essential ideas that govern statecraft must change. For five centuries it has taken the resources of a state to destroy another state . . . This is no longer true, owing to advances in international telecommunications, rapid computation, and weapons of mass destruction. The change in statecraft that will accompany these developments will be as profound as any that the State has thus far undergone." -- from the Prologue The Shield of Achilles is a classic inquiry into the nature of the State, its origin in war, and its drive for peace and legitimacy. Philip Bobbitt, a professor of constitutional law and a historian of nuclear strategy, has served in the White House, the Senate, the State Department, and the National Security Council in both Democratic and Republican administrations, and here he brings his formidable experience and analytical gifts to bear on our changing world. Many have observed that the nation-state is dying, yet others have noted that the power of the State has never been greater. Bobbitt reconciles this paradox and introduces the idea of the market-state, which is already replacing its predecessor. Along the way he treats such themes as the Long War (which began in 1914 and ended in 1990). He explains the relation of violence to legitimacy, and the role of key individuals in fates that are partially -- but only partially -- determined. This book anticipates the coalitional war against terrorism and lays out alternative futures for the world. Bobbitt shows how nations might avoid the great power confrontations that have a potential for limitless destruction, and he traces theorigin and evolution of the State to such wars and the peace conferences that forged their outcomes into law, from Augsburg to Westphalia to Utrecht to Vienna to Versailles. The author paints a powerful portrait of the ever-changing interrelatedness of our world, and he uses his expertise in law and strategy to discern the paths that statehood will follow in the coming years and decades. Timely and perceptive, The Shield of Achilles will change the way we think about the world.

The Power of Productivity: Wealth, Poverty, and the Threat to Global Stability
William W. Lewis
ISBN: 0226476766
The disparity between rich and poor countries is the most serious, intractable problem facing the world today. The chronic poverty of many nations affects more than the citizens and economies of those nations; it threatens global stability as the pressures of immigration become unsustainable and rogue nations seek power and influence through extreme political and terrorist acts. To address this tenacious poverty, a vast array of international institutions has pumped billions of dollars into these nations in recent decades, yet despite this infusion of capital and attention, roughly five billion of the world's six billion people continue to live in poor countries. What isn't working? And how can we fix it? The Power of Productivity provides powerful and controversial answers to these questions. William W. Lewis, the director emeritus of the McKinsey Global Institute, here draws on extensive microeconomic studies of thirteen nations over twelve years -- conducted by the Institute itself -- to counter virtually all prevailing wisdom about how best to ameliorate economic disparity. Lewis's research, which included studying everything from state-of-the-art auto makers to black-market street vendors and mom-and-pop stores, conclusively demonstrates that, contrary to popular belief, providing more capital to poor nations is not the best way to help them. Nor is improving levels of education, exchange-rate flexibility, or government solvency enough. Rather, the key to improving economic conditions in poor countries, argues Lewis, is increasing productivity through intense, fair competition and protecting consumer rights. As The Power of Productivity explains, this sweeping solution affects the economies of poor nations at all levels -- from the viability of major industries to how the average consumer thinks about his or her purchases. Policies must be enacted in developing nations that reflect a consumer rather than a producer mindset and an attendant sense of consumer rights. Only one force, Lewis claims, can stand up to producer special privileges -- consumer interests. The Institute's unprecedented research method and Lewis's years of experience with economic policy combine to make The Power of Productivity the most authoritative and compelling view of the global economy today, one that will inform political and economic debate throughout the world for years to come.

Liars, Lovers, and Heroes : What the New Brain Science Reveals About How We Become Who We Are
Steven R. Quartz, Terrence J. Sejnowski
ISBN: 0060001496
This book combines cutting-edge findings in neuroscience with examples from history and the headlines to introduce the new science of cultural biology, born of advances in brain imaging, computer modeling, and genetics. Doctors Quartz and Sejnowski show how both our noblest and darkest traits are rooted in brain systems so ancient that we share them with insects. They then demystify the dynamic engagement between brain and world that makes us something far beyond the sum of our parts. The authors show how our humanity unfolds in precise stages as brain and world engage on increasingly complex levels. Their discussion embraces shaping forces as ancient as climate change over millennia and events as recent as the terrorism and heroism of September 11, and offers intriguing answers to some of our most enduring questions, including why we live together, love, kill -- and sometimes lay down our lives for others.

The Lunar Men: Five Friends Whose Curiosity Changed the World
Jenny Uglow
ISBN: 0374528888
In the 1760s a group of amateur experimenters met and made friends in the English Midlands. Most came from humble families, all lived far from the center of things, but they were young and their optimism was boundless: together they would change the world. Among them were the ambitious toymaker Matthew Boulton and his partner James Watt, of steam-engine fame; the potter Josiah Wedgwood; and the larger-than-life Erasmus Darwin, physician, poet, inventor, and theorist of evolution (a forerunner of his grandson Charles). Later came Joseph Priestly, discover of oxygen and fighting radical. With a small band of allies - the chemist James Keir, the doctors William Small and William Withering (the man who put digitalis on the medical map), and two wild young followers of Rousseau, Richard Lovell Edgeworth and Thomas Day - they formed the Lunar Society of Birmingham, so called because it met at each full moon, and kick-started the Industrial Revolution. Blending science, art, and commerce, the Lunar Men built canals; launched balloons; named plants, gases, and minerals; changed the face of England and the china in its drawing rooms; and plotted to revolutionize its soul.

The Secret Life of Puppets
Victoria Nelson
ISBN: 0674012445
In one of those rare books that allows us to see the world not as we've never seen it before, but as we see it daily without knowing, Victoria Nelson illuminates the deep but hidden attraction the supernatural still holds for a secular mainstream culture that forced the transcendental underground and firmly displaced wonder and awe with the forces of reason, materialism, and science. In a backward look at an era now drawing to a close, The Secret Life of Puppets describes a curious reversal in the roles of art and religion: where art and literature once took their content from religion, we came increasingly to seek religion, covertly, through art and entertainment. In a tour of Western culture that is at once exhilarating and alarming, Nelson shows us the distorted forms in which the spiritual resurfaced in high art but also, strikingly, in the mass culture of puppets, horror-fantasy literature, and cyborgs: from the works of Kleist, Poe, Musil, and Lovecraft to Philip K. Dick and virtual reality simulations. At the end of the millennium, discarding a convention of the demonized grotesque that endured three hundred years, a Demiurgic consciousness shaped in Late Antiquity is emerging anew to re-divinize the human as artists like Lars von Trier and Will Self reinvent Expressionism in forms familiar to our pre-Reformation ancestors. Here as never before, we see how pervasively but unwittingly, consuming art forms of the fantastic, we allow ourselves to believe.

The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap
Stephanie Coontz
ISBN: 0465090974
This myth-shattering examination of two centuries of American family life banishes the misconceptions about the past that cloud current debate about "family values." "Leave It to Beaver" was not a documentary, Stephanie Coontz points out; neither the 1950s nor any other moment from our past presents workable models of how to conduct our personal lives today. Without minimizing the serious new problems in American families, Coontz warns that a consoling nostalgia for a largely mythical past of "traditional values" is a trap that can only cripple our capacity to solve today's problems. From "a man's home was his castle" to "traditional families never asked for a handout," this provocative book explodes cherished illusions about the past. Organized around a series of myths and half-truths that burden modern families, the book sheds new light on such contemporary concerns as parenting, privacy, love, the division of labor along gender lines, the black family, feminism, and sexual practice. Fascinating facts abound: In the nineteenth century, the age of sexual consent in some states was nine or ten, and alcoholism and drug abuse were more rampant than today . . . Teenage childbearing peaked in the fabulous family-oriented 1950s . . . Marriages in pioneer days lasted a shorter time than they do now. Placing current family dilemmas in the context of far-reaching economic, political, and demographic changes, The Way We Never Were shows that people have not suddenly and inexplicably "gone bad" and points to ways that we can help families do better. Seeing our own family pains as part of a larger social predicament means that we can stop the cycle of guilt or blame and face the real issues constructively, Coontz writes. The historical evidence reveals that families have always been in flux and often in crisis, and that families have been most successful wherever they have built meaningful networks beyond their own boundaries.

Today Then: America's Best Minds Look 100 Years into the Future on the Occasion of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair
Dave Walter
ISBN: 1560370246
Booknews In essays originally published in newspapers as a prelude to the 1893 Columbian Exposition (Chicago), 74 noted social commentators from the fields of science, politics, commerce, education, religion, and the arts predict life in 100 years. Fascinating, if not always foresightful. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Enlightening the World: Encyclopedie, The Book That Changed the Course of History
Philipp Blom
ISBN: 1403968950
In 1777, A Group of Young Men produced a book that aimed to tear the world apart and rebuild it, sparking a movement that became known as the Enlightenment. This book-the Encyclopedie-championed rationalism, free thinking, and secularism, and was so dangerous and subversive that it was banned by the Pope. The writers included some of the greast minds of the age-Denis Diderot, the editor who had come to Paris to become a Jesuit but found the joys of the city too enticing; Jean d'Alembert, one of the leading mathematicians of the eighteenth century; Jean Jacques Rousseau, the father of Romanticism; and Voltaire, the author of Candide-who together conceived of a work that would demolish the social order dominated by the Crown and Church, a brave act at a time when heresy was punishable by death. During the sixteen years it took to write, compile, and produce all twenty-seven volumes, the writers had to defy authorities and face exile, jail, and censorship, as well as numerous internal falling-outs and philosophical differences. Encyclopedie's editors and contributors daily skirted danger based solely on their belief systems. Compiling this collection made them-the Encyclopedists, as they came to be called-the most feared men in all of Versailles and the intellectual leaders of the French Revolution. In Enlightening the World, novelist and historian Philipp Blom breathes new life into the sixteen-year struggle to create the Encyclopedie, by vividly portraying the men who wrote it, the powerful forces that tried to suppress it, and the tremendous impact it had on the world.

Age of Discontinuity: Guidelines to Our Changing Society
Peter F. Drucker
ISBN: 1560006188
Predictions of change to the social and economic landscape.

The 500 Year Delta : What Happens After What Comes Next
Watts Wacker and Jim Taylor with Howard Means
ISBN: 0887309119
No description

How We Decide
Jonah Lehrer
ISBN: 0547247990
"As Lehrer describes in fluid prose, the brain's reasoning centers are easily fooled, often making judgments based on nonrational factors like presentation (a sales pitch or packaging)...Lehrer is a delight to read, and this is a fascinating book (some of which appeared recently, in a slightly different form, in the New Yorker) that will help everyone better understand themselves and their decision making." - Publisher's Weekly, starred review

Connected: The Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives
Nicholas A.. Christakis & James H. Fowler
ISBN: 0316036145
"Connected explores the startling intricacies of social networks."-O, The Oprah Magazine

A Cultural History of Humour: From Antiquity to the Present Day
Jan Bremmer (Editor) and Herman Roodenburg (Editor)
ISBN: 0745618804
"This is an unusual and stimulating book, packed with valuable information on a subject too often considered trivial and nonscholarly." - Sixteenth Century Journal

The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression
Andrew Solomon
ISBN: 0684854678
The Noonday Demon examines depression in personal, cultural, and scientific terms. Drawing on his own struggles with the illness and interviews with fellow sufferers, doctors and scientists, policymakers and politicians, drug designers and philosophers, Solomon reveals the subtle complexities and sheer agony of the disease. He confronts the challenge of defining the illness and describes the vast range of available medications, the efficacy of alternative treatments, and the impact the malady has had on various demographic populations around the world and throughout history. He also explores the thorny patch of moral and ethical questions posed by emerging biological explanations for mental illness.