Jill Lepore visits Rachel Maddow Show

THE WHITES OF THEIR EYES got some lovin’ Friday night from host Rachel Maddow.  Many thanks to MSNBC producers for inviting Jill on the show to share her thoughts about the poaching of history by the Tea Party.

Jill Lepore and Callie Crossley talk tea parties

Jill Lepore and WGBH’s Callie Crossley talk tea parties, rabble rousing, and the potent symbolism of “revolutionary kitsch.”  (Jill’s segment starts around the 36 minute mark.)

Less than a month until books are in!  Don’t be tardy for the party.  THE WHITES OF THEIR EYES pubs October 6.

David Reznick discusses Darwin’s “big ambition” with Leonard Lopate

At long last, the podcast for David Reznick’s April 27th interview on WNYC’s The Leonard Lopate Show is available here! 

(Three cheers for technological evolution and embedding codes.)

Reznick, a biology professor at UC Riverside, has managed to break through the glut of Darwinniversary coverage with his fresh reading of the Origin for a 21st century audience.    150 years later, we’re still talking about his book so Charles Darwin must have made good on those early ambitions to be, as Reznick tells Lopate, “the Isaac Newton of Social Science.” Here’s hoping David Reznick enjoys such lasting readership with ON THE ORIGIN THEN AND NOW.

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C.S. Manegold on “Radio Boston” uncovering the forgotten past

In case you were busy shoveling the latest coating of white stuff this past Friday and missed it, PUP author Catherine Manegold made her WBUR “Radio Boston” debut to field call-in questions about the buried history of slavery in the north.  Check out the WBUR website to hear the fascinating podcast and view the slideshow of sites featured in the book, TEN HILLS FARM.

Black History Month has come and gone.  Hard to believe since we’ve spent almost as many days out of the office as in it this February (not that we’re complaining too loudly!) so in March, let’s continue to be mindful of the forgotten past.  Though the media may have moved onto more present concerns like the never ending healthcare debate and the latest in a string of blindsiding natural disasters, Catherine Manegold’s book brings tidings of great dismay to many who live under the deluded belief that the north was guilt-free when it came to owning slaves.

Avishai Margalit on ABC Radio

Though many of us blindly catapult through the holidays, steamrolling any obstacle in our way, let us pause to consider the words of PUP author Avishai Margalit: “It is our compromises that tell us who we are.”  Well said, sir!

Follow the link to listen to Avishai’s interview with our friends down under.

Maybe next year his advice will save you and yours some time and energy that otherwise would have been spent on arguments and hurt feelings!

A book by any other cover would smell as sweet

The Spring 2010 catalog features new paperback editions of some of our most popular books from 2008 and 2009 (and even one from much earlier). Unlike previous years, though, many of the covers for these books have been wholly redesigned or substantially tweaked. I asked PUP Art Director Maria Lindenfeldar and our talented designers to chime in on these new cover designs. What do you think of these new covers? Vote below.

“The first design was done by a freelancer, and it never came together as hoped. The redesign was an attempt to match the editor’s original vision more closely. The artwork for the second version was spotted by the editor in a review of the hardcover edition.”

“We wanted the paperback edition to look distinctive yet familiar.  The type has been reworked to make it more playful and to integrate it more  closely with the Ed Koran image. The redesign also included a promotional  quote and a new background color.”

“The  original jacket was gorgeous, but it didn’t reflect the content of the book.  The iPod is one of the major examples Bhide uses to support his argument  that technology developed abroad can have positive effects on the Western  economy. Putting it on the cover just made a lot of sense.”

“The set of steps on the original jacket was a symbol of change and decline, but that image was quite abstract. For the paperback, we  used “the empty suit” as a visual metaphor; it alludes to the loss of  idealism that Khurana argues was originally a critical part of a business  school education.”

“Simple really – this book is not just a paperback of a hardback original (we did that for this book some long time ago). This is a new edition of a paperback of a hardback original. We needed to draw attention to the fact that the book is different from the original editions. BUT the original cover design was so good, we didn’t want to try striking out with an entirely new concept. So, what we did was to simply freshen up and adapt the original by adding some color and making the skyline more identifiable as a ‘financial center’. “

“The redesign was meant  to emphasize that this is a work of fiction aimed at a college-age audience.  The stylized möbius strip alludes to an infinity  symbol (a subject studied by the main character) and represents an  intellectual and philosophical journey undertaken by the main character and  his grandfather. The original jacket was a photograph of the author and his grandson. “

Steve Strogatz interviewed on WNYC’s RadioLab

Listen in to Steve Strogatz discussing his friendship with his high school mathematics teacher Don Joffray on WNYC’s RadioLab. Their relationship was conducted mostly by letters and shared love of mathematical problems. As WNYC notes, “Steve explains how numbers can connect you and where they fall short.”

Also, WNYC linked through to this video of Steve making a presentation. It is very touching and shows lots of the letters.

Viktor Mayer-Schonberger, author of DELETE, on the Two-Way blog at NPR

Have a listen to this conversation between PUP author Viktor Mayer-Schonberger and Mark Memmott of NPR’s The Two-Way blog. Mark writes on the blog:

I came upon Mayer-Schonberger’s thinking in Wired magazine. His premise intrigued me because I’ve always wanted to know what the world looked like thousands of years ago, what great historical figures sounded like — and what life was like for my grandparents and other ancestors I never knew. Here was someone making the case that there might be a downside to my thinking.

We spoke by telephone — Mayer-Schonberger was in Seattle. He was sympathetic to my thinking, but argued that it’s not good if “whatever we do, whatever images are taken of us, will be around for decades to come” — and available to use against us.

Copies of Viktor’s book, Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age have just arrived in our warehouse this week and will soon be available everywhere.

John Kricher talks Balance on Wisconsin Public Radio

BALANCE OF NATURE author John Kricher was interviewed on Kathleen Dunn last Tuesday, July 28.  He took questions from listeners and explained the myth behind ecological self-mitigation.  Scroll down to the 10:00 am spot here to listen!

Good news — Bob Shiller declares “The day will come when Timothy Geithner sells his house.”

Timothy Geithner is having trouble selling his house. The Daily Show calls upon “legendary housing economist” Bob Shiller, author of The Subprime Solution and Animal Spirits for advice… on Geithner’s bathroom tiles. Enjoy the clip below.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Home Crisis Investigation
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Political Humor Joke of the Day

Portfolios of the Poor on Planet Money

On today’s Planet Money:

Economists at the World Bank calculate that 2.5 billion people live on $2 a day, but what exactly does that mean? In the developed world, living on so little would be almost unthinkable. For 40 percent of the global population, $2 a day is a reality that must, somehow, be made to work.

In Portfolios of the Poor, Daryl Collins and co-author Jonathan Morduch uncover the surprisingly complex financial lives of the most destitute people.

Darius Rejali on All Things Considered

Darius Rejali, author of Torture and Democracy, was interviewed on All Things Considered about the DOJ torture memos. He responds specifically to the assertion that the interrogation techniques described were “safe”. From the show’s description:

The memo goes on to explain the basis for this assertion. According to Bybee, the government is confident that these techniques are safe for one very simple reason.

For a number of decades, Bybee writes, the government has been systematically using almost all of these techniques against more than 26,000 of our own people: soldiers participating in a program intended to teach them how to survive capture by a hostile enemy. Only a very small portion of those soldiers, the memo goes on to say, experienced any negative psychological repercussions.