What is your Amazon warrior name?

Inspired by new research by Adrienne Mayor, available for the first time in her forthcoming book The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World, we present this personality quiz. Leave a comment below with your Amazon alter ego. If you want to read more information about these women, please click here.

Throwback Thursday #TBT: Michael B. Miller’s The Bon Marche: Bourgeois Culture and the Department Store, 1869- 1920 (1981)

Miller, The Bon Marche

Welcome to the fourth edition of Throwback Thursday! This week’s #TBT looks at The Bon Marche: Bourgeois Culture and the Department Store, 1869-1920, Michael B. Miller’s 1981 cultural study of the Bon Marche department store, now resurrected as part of the Princeton Legacy Library series. Here area few more details about the book:

In this comprehensive social history of the Bon Marche, the Parisian department store that was the largest in the world before 1914, Michael Miller explores the bourgeois identities, ambitions, and anxieties that the new emporia so vividly dramatized. Through an original interpretation of paternalism, public images, and family-firm relationships, he shows how this new business enterprise succeeded in reconciling traditional values with the coming of an age of mass consumption and bureaucracy.

Jean T. Joughin of the Business History Review called Miller’s work “an absorbing study that can be read with pleasure by anyone interested in modern techniques of mass selling or in French culture before World War I.”

We’ve hoped you’ve enjoyed this edition of Throwback Thursday (#TBT), and we’ll see you next week!

 

6 Free to Low-Cost Resources to Teach You Calculus in a Fun and Interactive Way

In his new book, Everyday Calculus: Discovering the Hidden Math All around Us, Oscar E. Fernandez shows that calculus can actually be fun and applicable to our daily lives. Whether you’re trying to regulate your sleep schedule or find the best seat in the movie theater, calculus can help, and Fernandez’s accessible prose conveys complex mathematical concepts in terms understandable even to readers with no prior knowledge of calculus. Fernandez has also provided a list below of his favorite affordable resources for teaching yourself calculus, both on- and offline.

Princeton University Press offers several other books to help you master this most notorious of the mathematics. If you’re already good at calculus, but want to be great at it, check out Adrian Banner’s The Calculus Lifesaver: All the Tools You Need to Excel at Calculus, an informal but comprehensive companion to any single-variable calculus textbook. For high school mathletes and aspiring zombie hunters of all ages, there’s also Colin Adams’s Zombies and Calculus, an interactive reading experience set at a small liberal arts college during a zombie apocalypse. Readers learn as they go, using calculus to defeat the walking dead.

Calculus. There, I said it. If your heart skipped a beat, you might be one of the roughly 1 million students–or the parent of one of these brave souls–that will take the class this coming school year. Math is already tough, you might have been told, and calculus is supposed to be the “make or break” math class that may determine whether you have a future in STEM (science, technology, engineering, or mathematics); no pressure huh?

But you’ve got a little under two months to go. That’s plenty of time to brush up on your precalculus, learn a bit of calculus, and walk in on day one well prepared–assuming you know where to start.

That’s where this article comes in. As a math professor myself I use several free to low-cost resources that help my students prepare for calculus. I’ve grouped these resources below into two categories: Learning Calculus and Interacting with Calculus.

Learning Calculus.

1. Paul’s online math notes–an interactive website (free).

This online site from Paul Dawkins, math professor at Lamar University, is arguably the best (free) online site for learning calculus. In a nutshell, it’s an interactive textbook. There are tons of examples, each followed by a complete solution, and various links that take you to different parts of the course as needed (i.e., instead of saying, for example, “recall in Section 2.1…” the links take you right back to the relevant section). I consider Prof. Dawkins’ site to be just as good, if not better, at teaching calculus than many actual calculus textbooks (and it’s free!). I should also mention that Prof. Dawkins’ site also includes fairly comprehensive precalculus and algebra sections.

2. Khan Academy–short video lectures (free).

A non-profit run by educator Salman Khan, the Khan academy is a popular online site featuring over 6,000 (according to Wikipedia) video mini-lectures–typically lasting about 15 minutes–on everything from art history to mathematics. The link I’ve included here is to the differential calculus set of videos. You can change subjects to integral calculus, or to trigonometry or algebra once you jump onto the site.

3. MIT online lectures–actual course lectures in video format (free).

One of the earliest institutions to do so, MIT records actual courses and puts up the lecture videos and, in some cases, homeworks, class notes, and exams on its Open Courseware site. The link above is to the math section. There you’ll find several calculus courses, in addition to more advanced math courses. Clicking on the videos may take you to iTunes U, Apple’s online library of video lectures. Once there you can also search for “calculus” and you’ll find other universities that have followed in MIT’s footsteps and put their recorded lectures online.

4. How to Ace Calculus: The Streetwise Guide, by Colin Adams, Abigail Thompson, and Joel Hass

If you’re looking for something in print, this book is a great resource. The book will teach you calculus, probably have you laughing throughout due to the authors’ good sense of humor, and also includes content not found in other calculus books, like tips for taking calculus exams and interacting with your instructor. You can read the first few pages on the book’s site.

Interacting with Calculus.

1. Calculus java applets–online interactive demonstrations of calculus topics(free).

There are many sites that include java-based demonstrations that will help you visualize math. Two good ones I’ve come across are David Little’s site and theUniversity of Notre Dame’s site. By dragging a point or function, or changing specific parameters, these applets make important concepts in calculus come alive; they also make it far easier to understand certain things. For example, take this statement: “as the number of sides of a regular polygon inscribed in a circle increases, the area of that polygon better approximates the area of the circle.” Even if you followed that, text is no comparison to this interactive animation.

One technological note: Because these are java applets, some of you will likely run into technology issues (especially if you’re on a Mac). For example, your computer may block these applets because it thinks that they are malicious. Here is a workaround from Java themselves that may help you in these cases.

2. Everyday Calculus, by Oscar E. Fernandez.

Self-promotion aside, calculus teachers often sell students (and parents) on the need to study calculus by telling them about how applicable the subject is. The problem is that the vast majority of the applications usually discussed are to things that many of us will likely never experience, like space shuttle launches and the optimization of company profits. The result: math becomes seen as an abstract subject that, although has applications, only become “real” if you become a scientist or engineer.

In  Everyday Calculus I flip this script and start with ordinary experiences, like taking a shower and driving to work, and showcase the hidden calculus behind these everyday events and things. For example, there’s some neat trigonometry that helps explain why we sometimes wake up feeling groggy, and thinking more carefully about how coffee cools reveals derivatives at work. This sort of approach makes it possible to use the book as an experiential learning tool to discover the calculus hidden all around you.

With so many good resources it’s hard to know where to start and how to use them all effectively. Let me suggest one approach that uses the resources above synergistically.

For starters, the link to Paul’s site takes you to the table of contents of his site. The topic ordering there is roughly the same as what you’d find in a calculus textbook. So, you’d probably want to start with his review of functions. From there, the next steps depend on the sort of learning experience you want.

1. If you’re comfortable learning from Paul’s site you can just stay there, using the other resources to complement your learning along the way.

2. If you learn better from lectures, then use Paul’s topics list and jump on the Khan Academy site and/or the MIT and iTunes U sites to find video lectures on the corresponding topics.

3. If you’re more of a print person, then How to Ace Calculus would be a great way to start. That book’s topics ordering is pretty much the same as Paul’s, so there’d be no need to go back and forth.

Whatever method you decided on, I still recommend that you use Paul’s site, the interactive java applets, and Everyday Calculus. These three resources, used together, will allow you to completely interact with the calculus you’ll be learning. From working through examples and checking your answer (on Paul’s site), to interacting directly with functions, derivatives, and integrals (on the java applet sites), to exploring and experiencing the calculus all around you (Everyday Calculus), you’ll gain an appreciation and understanding of calculus that will no doubt put you miles ahead of your classmates come September.

This article is cross-posted with The Huffington Post with permission of the author.

Recommended Reading:

 Fernandez_Everyday cover Everyday Calculus: Discovering the Hidden Math All around Us by Oscar E. Fernandez
The Calculus Lifesaver The Calculus Lifesaver: All the Tools You Need to Excel in Calculus by Adrian Banner
 7-18 Zombies  Zombies & Calculus by Colin Adams

Two Princeton University Press titles short listed for Phi Beta Kappa Society Annual Book Awards

We are delighted to congratulate Thomas G. Pavel and A. Douglas Stone on the occasion of their books being shortlisted for prestigious awards given by the Phi Beta Kappa Society.

Pavel’s book The Lives of the Novel: A History is nominated for The Christian Gauss Award, a prizewhich recognizes books in the field of literary scholarship or criticism. While Stone’s Einstein and the Quantum is shortlisted under The Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science, a prize that recognizes outstanding contributions by scientists to the literature of science.

Our fingers are crossed for both authors. The winners will be announced on October 1, 2014.

Hot off the Presses — Princeton University Press’s #NewBooks for this week

After Hegel: German Philosophy, 1840-1900<br>Frederick C. Beiser After Hegel:
German Philosophy, 1840-1900
Frederick C. Beiser

“This exciting book provides an excellent overview of German philosophy in the latter two-thirds of the nineteenth century, showing that this relatively neglected period deserves more attention. The book is full of original insights, makes extraordinary use of obscure sources, and ties it all together in a clear and lively narrative that readers at all levels will enjoy. It will instantly become the main concise work on this period and should have a wide audience and a long career.”–Karl Ameriks, University of Notre Dame

The Gamble: Choice and Chance in the 2012 Presidential Election<br>John Sides & Lynn Vavreck<br>With a new preface by the authors The Gamble:
Choice and Chance in the 2012 Presidential Election
John Sides & Lynn Vavreck
With a new preface by the authors

“Sides and Vavreck offer a detailed, quantified description of the battlefield–an effort to provide political science insight in real time.”–David Lauter, Los Angeles Times/Jacket Copy blog

Mothers of Conservatism: Women and the Postwar Right<br>Michelle M. Nickerson Mothers of Conservatism:
Women and the Postwar Right
Michelle M. Nickerson

“Nickerson has enriched conservative historiography by examining the integral role women played in conservatism’s development and implementation and has forced feminist historiography to confront the complications that conservative female activists bring to the literature.”–Mary C. Brennan, Journal of American History

The Mystery of the Invisible Hand: A Henry Spearman Mystery<br>Marshall Jevons The Mystery of the Invisible Hand:
A Henry Spearman Mystery
Marshall Jevons

“A cerebral delight, The Mystery of the Invisible Hand is an engrossing, original, and compelling whodunit in the tradition of Amanda Cross and Joanne Dobson.”–Carolyn Hart, Agatha Award-winning author of Letter from Home

Story/Time: The Life of an Idea<br>Bill T. Jones Story/Time:
The Life of an Idea
Bill T. Jones

“An experimental dancer/choreographer/performance artist improvises on the nature of story itself in a unique format. . . . A brave and often successful attempt to capture and display movement and intuition and the unspoken on the printed page.”–Kirkus Reviews

Upscaling Downtown: From Bowery Saloons to Cocktail Bars in New York City<br>Richard E. Ocejo Upscaling Downtown:
From Bowery Saloons to Cocktail Bars in New York City
Richard E. Ocejo

“A beautifully conceived and elegantly executed book that employs a magnifying glass to understand New York City. Focusing on bars in downtown Manhattan, Ocejo reveals the changing face of New York City in all its richness and complexity, enabling us to understand the key players in gentrification over time–old-timers, new arrivals, politicians, business owners, and activists–and how they interact and influence each other.”–William B. Helmreich, author of The New York Nobody Knows

Fun Fact Friday: Thanatosis and Batesian Mimicry (Don’t Worry, We’ll Explain)

Happy Friday, everybody! It’s time for our next installment of Fun Fact Friday, with Arthur V. Evans’s latest book, Beetles of Eastern North America.

This week’s post is dedicated to (drumroll, please)…the art of playing dead.

8-13 Beetles

Did you know?

Thanatosis, or death feigning, is a behavioral strategy “employed by hide beetles (Trogidae), certain fungus-feeding darkling beetles (tenebrionidae), zopherids (Zopheridae), weevils (Curculionidae), and many others” to avoid becoming a predator’s dinner. When these beetles sense danger, they pull their legs and antennae up tightly against their bodies so that they look dead and lifeless to their enemies. These small predators lose interest in the hard, small, and unflinching beetles, and move on to their next target. Pretty cool, huh?

Batesian Mimicry is another tactic to keep from being eaten. In this case, beetles “mimic the appearance or behavior of stinging or distasteful insects,” as in the case of the flower-visiting Acmaeodera (Buprestidae), scarabs (Scarabaeidae), and longhorns (Cerambycidae). They all sport fuzzy bodies, bold colors and patterns, and behaviors to make them believable mimics of bees and wasps, and make quick and jerky movements to complete the staging. And believe you, me, neither animals nor humans want to be stung by bees – and so the predators retreat.

We hope you feel informed, and we’ll see you next Friday for another great Fun Fact!
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Arthur V. Evans is the author of:

Evans_Beetles Beetles of Eastern North America by Arthur V. Evans
Paperback | 2014 | $35.00 / £24.95 | ISBN: 9780691133041 | 560 pp. | 8 x 10 | 1,500+ color illus. 31 line illus. | eBook | ISBN: 9781400851829 | Reviews  Table of Contents  Preface[PDF]  Sample Entry[PDF]

Throwback Thursday #TBT: Erwin Goodenough’s Jewish Symbols in the Greco-Roman Period (1992)


Throwback Thursday: Week 3


Goodenough, Jewish Symbols in the Greco-Roman Period

It’s Thursday again, folks, and you know what that means: time for a Throwback (#TBT)! This week’s #TBT honors Erwin Goodenough’s Jewish Symbols in the Greco-Roman Period (1992), another fundamental text found in the Princeton Legacy Library. Here’s a little bit of information on your favorite relic – both a literal and figurative designation, in this case:

This volume presents the most important portions of Erwin Goodenough’s classic thirteen-volume work, a magisterial attempt to encompass human spiritual history in general through the study of Jewish symbols in particular. Revealing that the Jewish religion of the period was much more varied and complex than the extant Talmudic literature would lead us to believe, Goodenough offered evidence for the existence of a Hellenistic-Jewish mystic mythology far closer to the Qabbalah than to rabbinical Judaism.

David M. Hay of Studia Philonia Annual 1 praises the volume, saying that, “[s]ince [Jacob Neusner's one-volume abridgement] presents the fruits of Goodenough’s decades-long study of ancient Jewish art, climaxed by his study of the third-century synagogue at Dura-Europas, it is probably the best introduction to Goodenough’s mature thought. Neusner contributes a twenty-nine-page foreword that explains the enduring importance of the entire thirteen-volume work.”

And if we’ve peaked your interest with this book, you can find similar materials over in Mythos: The Princeton/Bollingen Series in World Mythology. We hope you’ve enjoyed this edition of Throwback Thursday (#TBT), and we’ll see you next week!

Paying It Forward, Using Math: Oscar Fernandez’s ‘Everyday Calculus’ Donated to Libraries in Franklin County, PA

Everyday Calculus, O. FernandezWhat a week!

It was recently announced that one of our books, Everyday Calculus by Oscar Fernandez, is to be donated by the United Way of Franklin County, in partnership with the Franklin County Library System, to public libraries all throughout Franklin County. The decision recognizes the 2013 Campaign Chair, Jim Zeger, who has demonstrated a dedication to service and a “willingness to teach others” during the course of his four-year tenure on the board of directors.

But the choice of text was far from random; Everyday Calculus was selected “because of the need for materials that support financial and mathematical literacy within our library systems,” says Mr. Zeger. He’s one to know; before coming to United Way, Zeger studied math at Juniata College and taught mathematics at the Maryland Correctional Institute. He also served for a number of years as part of the Tuscarora School District school board, and “is very supportive and understanding of the value of relating and connecting applied math to students.”

Bernice Crouse, executive director of the Franklin County Library System, accepted the books and has found them a place in each County library, including the bookmobile, in order to make them more accessible to readers. According to Crouse, this book fits perfectly with Pennsylvania Library Association’s PA Forward initiative, which “highlights Financial Literacy as a key to economic vitality in Pennsylvania.”

Mr. Fernandez is reportedly “delighted” and “honored” by the decision, and looks forward to further collaborating with United Way.

News of the World — August 11, 2014

NewsOfTheWorld_Banner

Each week we post a round-up of some of our most exciting national and international PUP book coverage. Reviews, interviews, events, articles–this is the spot for coverage of all things “PUP books” that took place in the last week. Enjoy!


now 8.11

 40 YEARS OF EVOLUTION

What if you could witness evolution in real time? Researchers Peter and Rosemary Grant, who have spent time on the Galápagos Island named Daphne Major each year since 1973, have found that changes are happening–right now. The Grants are featured in a recent New York Times piece that details their years of research and the incredible discoveries that they have made. Jonathan Weiner writes:

Charles Darwin spent only five weeks on the Galápagos Islands, and at first, the British biologists Peter and Rosemary Grant didn’t plan to stay very long either — a few years at most.

They landed in 1973 on the tiny uninhabited island of Daphne Major, the cinder cone of an extinct volcano. (Darwin himself never set foot there.) Daphne is as steep as a roof, with cliffs running all around the base, and just one small spot on the outer slope flat enough to pitch a tent.

Their goal, as they relate in their new book, “40 Years of Evolution,” was to study finches in the genus Geospiza — the birds that gave Darwin some of his first inklings of evolution by natural selection — and to try to reconstruct part of their evolutionary history. Instead, they made an amazing discovery.

After several years of meticulous measurements, the Grants and their students realized that the finches’ dimensions were changing before their eyes. Their beaks and bodies were evolving and adapting from year to year, sometimes slowly, sometimes strikingly, generation after generation. The researchers were watching evolution in real time, evolution in the flesh.

Check out the full article, entitled “In Darwin’s Footsteps” in the New York Times.

daphne640h

In the richly illustrated 40 YEARS OF EVOLUTION: Darwin’s Finches on Daphne Major Island, the authors explore evolution taking place on a contemporary scale. By continuously tracking finch populations over a period of four decades, they uncover the causes and consequences of significant events leading to evolutionary changes in species.

The authors used a vast and unparalleled range of ecological, behavioral, and genetic data–including song recordings, DNA analyses, and feeding and breeding behavior–to measure changes in finch populations on the small island of Daphne Major in the Galápagos archipelago. They find that natural selection happens repeatedly, that finches hybridize and exchange genes rarely, and that they compete for scarce food in times of drought, with the remarkable result that the finch populations today differ significantly in average beak size and shape from those of forty years ago.

The authors’ most spectacular discovery is the initiation and establishment of a new lineage that now behaves as a new species, differing from others in size, song, and other characteristics. The authors emphasize the immeasurable value of continuous long-term studies of natural populations and of critical opportunities for detecting and understanding rare but significant events. By following the fates of finches for several generations, 40 YEARS OF EVOLUTION offers unparalleled insights into ecological and evolutionary changes in natural environments.

View Chapter One of 40 YEARS OF EVOLUTION for yourself.

 THE BANKERS’ NEW CLOTHES

For PUP author Anat Admati, American banks are doing it all wrong — and the status quo needs to change.

Admati, who was named one of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People for 2014, argues that banks are as fragile as they are not because they must be, but because they want to be–and they get away with it. Whereas this situation benefits bankers, it distorts the economy and exposes the public to unnecessary risks. Weak regulation and ineffective enforcement allowed the buildup of risks that ushered in the financial crisis of 2007-2009. Much can be done to create a better system and prevent crises. Yet the lessons from the crisis have not been learned.

These arguments and her recent progress are highlighted in a recent NYT feature entitled “When She Talks, Banks Shudder.” The article begins by discussing Admati’s tenacity:

Bankers are nearly unanimous on the subject of Anat R. Admati, the Stanford finance professor and persistent industry gadfly: Her ideas are wildly impractical, bad for the American economy and not to be taken seriously.

But after years of quixotic advocacy, Ms. Admati is reaching some very prominent ears. Last month, President Obama invited her and five other economists to a private lunch to discuss their ideas. She left him with a copy of “The Bankers’ New Clothes: What’s Wrong With Banking and What to Do About It,” a 2013 book she co-authored. A few weeks later, she testified for the first time before the Senate Banking Committee. And, in a recent speech, Stanley Fischer, vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, praised her “vigorous campaign.”

Dennis Kelleher, chief executive of Better Markets, a nonprofit that advocates stronger financial regulation, said Ms. Admati has emerged as one of the most effective advocates of the view that regulatory changes since the 2008 crisis remain insufficient. “She has been, as one must be,” Mr. Kelleher said, “dogged from the West Coast to the East Coast to Europe and back again and over again.”

Read the full article in the New York Times.

The past few years have shown that risks in banking can impose significant costs on the economy. Many claim, however, that a safer banking system would require sacrificing lending and economic growth. THE BANKERS’ NEW CLOTHES — now available in paperback — examines this claim and the narratives used by bankers, politicians, and regulators to rationalize the lack of reform, exposing them as invalid.

Admati and co-author Martin Hellwig argue that we can have a safer and healthier banking system without sacrificing any of its benefits, and at essentially no cost to society. They seek to engage the broader public in the debate by cutting through the jargon of banking, clearing the fog of confusion, and presenting the issues in simple and accessible terms.

Check out the new preface from the paperback edition of THE BANKERS’ NEW CLOTHES. And for more, watch Admati’s TED talk from earlier this year:

THE YOGA SUTRA OF PATANJALI

Yoga practitioners — is what you think you know about ancient yoga philosophy actually incorrect? PUP author David Gordon White brings us an exhaustively researched book that demonstrates why the yoga of India’s past bears little resemblance to the yoga practiced today.

Consisting of fewer than two hundred verses written in an obscure if not impenetrable language and style, Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra is today extolled by the yoga establishment as a perennial classic and guide to yoga practice. As David Gordon White demonstrates in this groundbreaking study, both of these assumptions are incorrect. Virtually forgotten in India for hundreds of years and maligned when it was first discovered in the West, the Yoga Sutra has been elevated to its present iconic status—and translated into more than forty languages—only in the course of the past forty years.

THE YOGA SUTRA OF PATANJALI: A Biography received great attention recently in three different publications. The book was reviewed in both Tricycle Magazine as well as in Shambhala Sun, which describes the book:

A lively account of this sutra’s unlikely history and how it has variously been interpreted, reinterpreted, ignored, and hailed. The colorful characters on these pages include Vivekananda and Krishnamacharya, two giants in modern yoga, as well as literary figures such as T.S. Eliot. There is also Alberuni, a Muslim scientist and scholar who translated a commentary on the Yoga Sutra a thousand years ago, and the outrageous Madame Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, who fused the principles of the Yoga Sutra with Western ideas of the occult.

Check out this author Q&A with David Gordon White for more on why he chose his area of study, and view Chapter One of THE YOGA SUTRA OF PATANJALI.

Hot off the Presses — Princeton University Press’s #NewBooks for this week

8-11 Art of DealArt of the Deal: Contemporary Art in a Global Financial Market
Noah Horowitz
With a new postscript by the author

“Art of the Deal is a crucial book on art and finance.”
–Blake Gopnik, Daily Beast

 

 

 

8-11 ConusConus of the Southeastern United States and Caribbean
Alan J. Kohn
Princeton Wild Guides

“World-class scholarship. This is a great book that takes readers on a scholarly grand tour from the earliest research history to the latest methodological approaches used to understand the biology and relationships of this intriguing group of gastropods. Kohn provides an amazing and unprecedented wealth of information.”–Rüdiger Bieler, coauthor of Seashells of Southern Florida

 

8-11 EntrepreneurialThe Entrepreneurial Group: Social Identities, Relations, and Collective Action
Martin Ruef

“Ruef explodes the myth of the lone entrepreneur, showing how those who start businesses assemble productive groups around themselves. He explains in a brilliant, original way how groups evolve into viable organizations and why some succeed while others fail. This is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand how entrepreneurs build businesses and why growing an enterprise is a team sport.”–Philip Anderson, INSEAD, director of the Rudolf and Valeria Maag International Centre for Entrepreneurship

 

8-11 Saved in AmericaGetting Saved in America: Taiwanese Immigration and Religious Experience
Carolyn Chen

“This book thus offers interesting points of view on the construction of identity and constitutes a good reference for understanding the family and religious traditions of the Taiwanese people: meaningful anecdotes, examples, and quotations, and a psychological approach.”–Hayet Sellami, China Perspectives

 

 

8-11 GoverningGoverning America: The Revival of Political History
Julian E. Zelizer

“Zelizer’s essays give the reader a good grasp of the ways that politics has unfolded over the past half century. And the range of topics gives a good sense of where the field lies at this point. The scholarship is impeccable, the sources appropriate, and the tone scholarly without being pedantic. As this collection of Zelizer’s finest work indicates, the discipline of history still has room for political history.”–John H. Barnhill, Canadian Journal of History

 

 

8-11 Moral DisquietMoral Disquiet and Human Life
Monique Canto-Sperber
Translated by Silvia Pavel

“[A]n extremely rich and wide-ranging work, written by one of the foremost contemporary moral philosophers in France. . . . Without at all sacrificing rigor, [Monique Canto-Sperber] demonstrates in a most resounding way that philosophy at its very best is plentiful in its resources to speak quite illuminatingly to the circumstances of life that agonize us so.”–Laurence Thomas, Ethics

 

 

8-11 presidential LeadershipPresidential Leadership and the Creation of the American Era
Joseph S. Nye, Jr.

“Sometimes the best presidential decisions are decisions not to act. This point is made in an excellent new book by Joseph Nye of Harvard University entitled Presidential Leadership and the Creation of the American Era.”–Gideon Rachman, Financial Times

 

 

 

8-11 TurthTruth
Alexis G. Burgess & John P. Burgess

Truth is remarkably succinct. . . . Yet it covers a great amount of ground with accessible discussions of a variety of topics. . . . [I]ntelligent and provocative.”–Michael P. Lynch, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

 

 

 

8-11 Black HoleWhat Does a Black Hole Look Like?
Charles D. Bailyn

“This book goes straight to the heart of astronomical intuition and evidence about black holes. Written in a highly accessible style, it provides enough information to educate an undergraduate astronomy or physics major without going into the many details required in a graduate class. I think students will greatly enjoy this book and derive significant insight from it.”–Coleman Miller, University of Maryland, College Park

 


Fun Fact Friday: Making Sense of Mandibles

Today’s fun fact for Beetles of Eastern North America by Arthur V. Evans takes an inside look at the stag beetle’s best accessory: his mandibles. Why do they have them? What do they use them for? Hold tight to find out!

Did you know? Photo Credit: Arthur V. Evans, Beetles of Eastern North America

The common name “stag beetle” refers to the large antlerlike mandibles found in some males, such as the giant stag beetle Lucanus elaphus (See middle frame at right). Mandible size within a species is “directly proportionate to the size of the body and regulated by genetic and environmental factors.”

Why do they have them?
Males use these oversized mouthparts to fight with rival males over who gets to take the lady beetle to dinner. You can find these beetles in moist habitats where there are plenty of things dying, like  a swamp. An area with decomposing wood is the ideal hideaway for these critters, since they drink tree sap and flower nectar, and munch on decaying deciduous and coniferous wood. But that’s good new for us: no home damagers here!

Bonus Fact:
The Family Lucanidae supposedly got its name when Pliny the Elder noted that Nigidius (a scholar of the Late Roman Republic and a friend of Cicero) called the stag beetle lucanus after the Italian region of Lucania, where they were turned into amulets for children. The scientific name of Lucanus cervus is the former word, plus cervus, deer.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Arthur V. Evans is the author of:

Evans_Beetles Beetles of Eastern North America by Arthur V. Evans
Paperback | 2014 | $35.00 / £24.95 | ISBN: 9780691133041 | 560 pp. | 8 x 10 | 1,500+ color illus. 31 line illus. | eBook | ISBN: 9781400851829 | Reviews  Table of Contents  Preface[PDF]  Sample Entry[PDF]

Hot off the Presses — Princeton University Press’s #NewBooks for this week

8-6 Against SecurityAgainst Security: How We Go Wrong at Airports, Subways, and Other Sites of Ambiguous Danger
Harvey Molotch (With a new preface by the author)

“Mr. Molotch . . . present(s) a vivid picture of the ways in which poorly designed security measures can deform everyday life and defeat themselves.”–Jordan Ellenberg, Wall Street Journal

 

 

 

8-7 GarveyThe Age of Garvey: How a Jamaican Activist Created a Mass Movement and Changed Global Black Politics
Adam Ewing

“At last, an account of Garveyism worthy of its historic influence. Taking a unique approach to the twentieth century’s first black power movement, Ewing shows how Garveyism became a dynamic force in the politics of the interwar years. His superlative book bridges the genres of intellectual, social, and cultural history to serve as a model for the study of transnationalism.”–Vincent Brown, author of The Reaper’s Garden

 

 
8-7 Aristotle's EthicsAristotle’s Ethics: Writings from the Complete Works
Aristotle
Revised, edited, and with an introduction by Jonathan Barnes & Anthony Kenny

Reviews from The Complete Works of Aristotle: “This new edition makes a landmark of scholarship available in a very usable form.”–Library Journal

 

 

 

8-7 Atlas of CitiesAtlas of Cities
Edited by Paul Knox
With a foreword by Richard Florida

“This is an atlas with a difference. It broaches the complexity of the urban experience directly and in a beautifully persuasive graphical way, showing how this great variety of city types and features can be explained both chronologically and geographically. A wonderful book of new insights about how our contemporary cities have evolved.” –Michael Batty, author of The New Science of Cities

Sample this book: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/i10307.pdf

8-7 Bee BookThe Bee: A Natural History
Noah Wilson-Rich
With contributions from Kelly Allin, Norman Carreck & Andrea Quigley
Earth is home to more than 20,000 bee species, from fluorescent-colored orchid bees and sweat bees to flower-nesting squash bees and leaf-cutter bees. This book takes an incomparable look at this astounding diversity, blending an engaging narrative with practical, hands-on discussions of such topics as beekeeping and bee health. It explores our relationship with the bee over evolutionary time, delving into how it came to be, where it stands today, and what the future holds for humanity and bees alike.

 

8-7 SlaveryBetween Slavery and Capitalism: The Legacy of Emancipation in the American South
Martin Ruef

“It would seem difficult to add any new knowledge to the history of the southern economy after the Civil War. But Martin Ruef has done just that. By arguing that the reconstruction of the southern economy was an uncertain and conflict-riven process, he suggests that the options that were pursued were a complex social construction that reflected the relative power of planters and their former slaves. Put simply, producing a labor market involved the construction of a new model of racial employment in the South. Ruef’s book uses previously unexploited data sources to examine the construction of this market from the bottom up and shows how this affected the life chances of African Americans for at least two generations.”–Neil D. Fligstein, University of California, Berkeley

8-7 Family ValuesFamily Values: The Ethics of Parent-Child Relationships
Harry Brighouse & Adam Swift

“Family Values is an important book on a neglected topic by two excellent scholars. It advances an original argument, and does so clearly and accessibly. Highly recommended.”–Stephen Macedo, Princeton University

 

 

 

8-7 GreenGreen: The History of a Color
Michel Pastoureau

“Beautifully illustrated.”–Daily Mail

 

 

8-7 Hidden ProcessesHidden Markov Processes: Theory and Applications to Biology
M. Vidyasagar

“This book provides a terrific introduction to an important and widely studied field–Markov processes (including hidden Markov processes)–with a particular view toward applications to problems in biology. With a wonderful balance of rigor, intuition, and choice of topics, the book gives a unique treatment of the subject for those interested in both fundamental theory and important applications.”–Sanjeev Kulkarni, Princeton University

 

 

 

8-7 OriginsThe Origins and History of Consciousness
Erich Neumann
With a foreword by C.G. Jung
Translated by R.F.C. Hull

“There can be no doubt that [Neumann] has brought to his task a remarkable . . . knowledge of classical mythology, some considerable acquaintance with the comparative study of religion, and a deep understanding of those psychological views and theories evolved by C. G. Jung.”–The Times Literary Supplement

 

 

8-7 ParadoxesParadoxes of Liberal Democracy: Islam, Western Europe, and the Danish Cartoon Crisis
Paul M. Sniderman, Michael Bang Petersen, Rune Slothuus & Rune Stubager

“Taking its starting point from the infamous Danish cartoon crisis and the clash of democratic values and Muslim fundamentalism that followed, this engagingly written, methodologically sophisticated, and creative study of public opinion adds substantially to a growing body of research into this ‘clash of civilizations’. The views of the Danish majority, far from scapegoating and vilifying the Muslim minority, distinguished carefully and intelligently between upholding the rights of this minority to live as Danish citizens while at the same time restricting freedoms for those associated with the threat of fundamentalist violence. This superb analysis of the nuances of public morality convincingly eschews simple answers to important and complex questions.”–Geoffrey Evans, University of Oxford

8-7 PenguinsPenguins: The Ultimate Guide
Tui De Roy, Mark Jones & Julie Cornthwaite

“The imagery in this book is incredible. Penguins is not only attractive and entertaining, but also an authoritative and easy-to-use reference. It is unlike any other book on the subject.”—Alvaro Jaramillo, author of Birds of Chile

 

 

8-7 EvangelicalThe Politics of Evangelical Identity: Local Churches and Partisan Divides in the United States and Canada
Lydia Bean

The Politics of Evangelical Identity is a bracing corrective to the perception of evangelicals as theological stooges mesmerized by the spell of conservative masterminds. Bean persuasively argues that the appeal of conservatives in the evangelical base has far more to do with how they connect the political to everyday spiritual and religious practices. Her path-clearing and transformative book brilliantly engages the political perspectives, moral passions, and religious beliefs of evangelicals from a practical, grounded perspective.”–Michael Eric Dyson, Georgetown University

 

8-7 ProfaneProfane Culture
Paul E. Willis
With a new preface by the author

A classic of British cultural studies, Profane Culture takes the reader into the worlds of two important 1960s youth cultures—the motor-bike boys and the hippies. Both groups were involved in an unequal but heroic fight to produce meaning and their own cultural forms in the face of a larger society dominated by the capitalist media and commercialism. They were pioneers of cultural experimentation, the self-construction of identity, and the curating of the self, which, in different ways, have become so widespread today.

Sample this book: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s10358.pdf

8-7 ReflectionA Reflection of Reality: Selected Readings in Contemporary Chinese Short Stories
Chih-p’ing Chou, Liping Yu & Joanne Chiang

“Chinese instruction is not only about teaching linguistic forms and their usages, but also about helping students obtain knowledge of Chinese culture and society. This timely book successfully achieves both of these goals by exposing students to literary works and language materials that are vivid and rich. A Reflection of Reality sets a model for teaching Chinese.”—Lening Liu, Columbia University

Sample this book: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s10387.pdf

8-7 Silent SexThe Silent Sex: Gender, Deliberation, and Institutions
Christopher F. Karpowitz & Tali Mendelberg

“This pathbreaking book brings us the latest research on why, in most public situations, women don’t speak up as much as men. It’s not just confidence–institutions matter, too. Sensitive and compelling, The Silent Sex is a must-read for anyone who cares about gender equality.”–Jane Mansbridge, Harvard Kennedy School

 

 

 

8-7 LinearTopics in Quaternion Linear Algebra
Leiba Rodman

“This is a very serious treatise by an author who is a powerful researcher and a clear expositor. I know of no other book that treats both the basic theory and advanced material as carefully and as comprehensively as this one. Topics in Quaternion Linear Algebra is a singular contribution of considerable value.”—Douglas R. Farenick, author of Algebras of Linear Transformations

Sample this book: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s10408.pdf

 

 

8-7 GenderWhy Gender Matters in Economics
Mukesh Eswaran

“This thoughtful, energetic, creative, and engaging book does a terrific job reviewing and explaining some of the most interesting economic research on gender in recent years. It fills an important gap in the gender and economics literature.”—Nancy Folbre, professor emeritus of economics, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Sample this book: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s10362.pdf

 

8-7 Why TolerateWhy Tolerate Religion?
Brian Leiter
With a new preface by the author

“A model of clarity and rigour and at points strikingly original, this is a book that anyone who thinks seriously about religion, ethics and politics will benefit from reading.”–John Gray, New Statesman