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Astronomers, Geometers, and Magicians of the Eastern Woodlands
Buried beneath today's Midwestern towns, under several layers of earth and the accumulated debris of two thousand years, are the clues to an ancient mystery. A Native American people, now known as the Hopewell, lived and worked these lands, building earthworks which in some instances dwarf the ruins at Stonehenge. More significantly, these mammoth earthworks were built in different geometric shapes, using a standard unit of measure and aligned to the cycles of the sun and the moon. Using the foundation of existing scholarship, Mysteries of the Hopewell presents new discoveries showing the accomplishments of the Mound Builders in astronomy, geometry, measurement, and counting. William Romain then goes one step further to theorize why generations of people toiled to move millions of tons of earth to form these precise structures, joining the ranks of the Egyptians, Mayans, Greeks, Chinese, and other advanced ancient cultures. William Romain's Mysteries of the Hopewell will appeal to many readers, including anthropologists, mathematicians, and historians, but perhaps especially to readers curious about ancient cultures and seeking explanations for these magnificent earthen structures.
Never Be the Horse depicts the world of a postmodern Dark Dorothy whose attempts to return home are foiled when she falls into the Garden of Eden, into the underworld with Walt Whitman, into mysterious versions of her own childhood. The poems evoke this nighttime within the self haunted by mythic and shadow-paradises--of home, homeland, the original garden--where "every story is made to hide / the others." Here, Adam slips on a piece of Eve's clothing, a child falls in love with the bomb, and a mourner watching the whores chased from the cemetery laments. It is also a world of erotic disguises. Still, it remains recognizably this world. The parent lies to the child about death, and the child lies to the parent about death. In the journey between those lies, as in the journey taken by the horse of the title, language becomes the place of refuge. It is there that "one world is always beginning." From "willingness . . . speaking its motherese," to the devil's "gossamer gibber," the voices in these poems discover that to be human is, as Heidegger said, "to be a conversation."
What happens when love is replaced by romance? In Nothing Fatal, Sarah Perrier presents us with a variety of answers to this question. Wise, sly, sexy, and sad, Perrier's poems not only court the reader, but flirt with each other, resulting in a collection that rejoices in, and even reconfigures, the notion of modern love.
Transformation of Edinburgh's Underworld in the Early Nineteeth Century
The year 1828, when William Burke, William Hare, and their wives murdered nearly a score of Edinburgh's poor and sold their bodies, offers us many more examples of entrepreneurial criminals in Edinburgh's Old Town. Young thieves ransacked a warehouse for tea, women pretending to be prostitutes lifted gentlemen's watches, and fine linens disappeared from washerwomen's houses. What Symonds reveals here is a shadow economy where the most numerous of all criminals and thieves practice their trade not out of poverty and misery, but because it is their trade. Symonds argues that the trade of thievery, far from being either static or a symptom of misery and sign of revolt, was a very lively economic sector, the freest market of all, and one that shifted and shadowed the larger legitimate economy. The community of laborers and petty fiddles, especially of visitors like drovers, might be tolerated, if done cleverly, but murder and theft, especially from local business, was more unsettling. But the entrepreneurial spirit was never more alive, or perhaps more valued, because it could easily substitute for capital in the shadow economy.
Paradigm Lost and Paradigm Gained
There is a general consensus among the North American archaeologists specializing in the Middle Woodland period (ca 100B.C. to ca A.D. 400) that the Ohio Hopewell was a rather straight forward complex of small-scaled peer polity communities based on simple gardening and extensive foraging practices and occupying dispersed habitation locales loosely clustered around major earthworks. This book challenges this general consensus by presenting a radically alternative view. It argues that the Ohio Hopewell episode can be better and more coherently characterized by treating it as a complex social system based on dual and mutually autonomous social networks of clan alliances and world renewal cults, and that this dual clan-cult social system was, in fact, the culmination of such social systems that were widely dispersed across the Eastern Woodlands. The cults were devoted to treating their deceased members and/or dependants as sacrificial offerings to enhance the sacred powers of nature and the clans were devoted to transforming their deceased into ancestors and the stresses these opposing mortuary practices generated underwrote the dynamics of the Ohio Hopewell and brought about the monumental earthworks as sacred locales of world renewal cults.
The All-Ohio Space Shuttle Mission
The desire to beat gravity is a Buckeye tradition. After all, Orville and Wilbur Wright were Dayton, Ohio, boys who went to Kitty Hawk in 1903 to get things off the ground. When space became the next frontier, John Glenn, who was born in Cambridge, Ohio, on July 18, 1921, became the first American to orbit the earth in his Friendship 7 spacecraft. A Wapakoneta, Ohio, resident, Neil Armstrong, born in 1930, followed in the footsteps of Glenn by being the first human to step onto the moon’s surface during the summer of 1969. Don Thomas, a Cleveland native, saw other Ohioans in space and set his sights on becoming an astronaut. After years of hard work and dedication, he became part of the 1995 All-Ohio space shuttle Discovery mission. Orbit of Discovery provides a first-hand account of this mission. Written by Thomas with the assistance of journalist, Mike Bartell, the book is a lively and entertaining must read for individuals who want to experience a ride into space. Orbit of Discovery is augmented with a foreword by astronaut and Senator John Glenn and an introduction by Senator George Voinovich.
Orphan, Indiana is a collection of spontaneous outbursts framed by reticence and the guiding mania of the subconscious. Profane and poignant, accidental-seeming but soaring with satirical intent, David Dodd Lee's poems capture a verisimilitude that's phenomenological, and yet of the moment.
Attempting to repair the fissures of everyday life, Brian Brodeur negotiates the psychological distances between desire and disgust, humor and catastrophe, banality and dream. The poems of Other Latitudes begin in the realm of personal experience, and expand into larger territories of cultural narcissism and political blindness. These poems meditate on the tenuous relationship between artist and subject, the curiosities of self-inflicted wounds, and the presence of hope in a landscape that is intrinsically scarred. Brodeur’s debut illustrates the conflict between inner lives and their outward appearances, with an eye turned to the unforgiving natural world.
Mothering in New English Poetry by Women
This study consists of two parts. The first part offers an overview of feminism’s theory of differences. The second part deals with the textual analysis of poems about ‘mothering’ by women from India, the Caribbean and Africa. Literary criticism has dealt with the representation of ‘mothering’ in prose texts. The exploration of lyrical texts has not yet come. Since the late 1970s, the acknowledgement of and the commitment to difference has been foundational for feminist theory and activism. This investigation promotes a differentiated, ‘locational’ feminism (Friedman). The comprehensive theoretical discussion of feminism’s different concepts of ‘gender’, ‘race’, ‘ethnicity’ and ‘mothering’ builds the foundation for the main part: the presentation and analysis of the poems. The issue of ‘mothering’ foregrounds the communicative aspect of women’s experience and wants to bridge the gap between theory and practice. This study, however, does not intend to specify ‘mothering’ as a universal and unique feminine characteristic. It underlines a metaphorical use and discusses the concepts of ‘nurturing’, ‘maternal practice’ and ‘social parenthood’. Regarding the extensive material, this study understands itself as an explorative not concluding investigation placed at the intersections of gender studies, postcolonial and classical literary studies. Most of all, it aims at initiating a dialogue and interchange between scholars and students in the Western and the ‘Third World’.
Essays on Poetry in a Difficult Time
What are we really wishing for when we want poetry to have the prominence it had in the past? Why do American poets overwhelmingly identify with the political left? How do poems communicate? Is there an essential link between formal experimentation and political radicalism? What happens when poetic outsiders become academic insiders? Just what makes a poem a poem? If a poet gives up on her art, what reasons could she find for coming back to poetry? These are the large questions animating the essays of The Poet Resigns: Essays on Poetry in a Difficult Time, a book that sets out to survey not only the state of contemporary poetry, but also the poet's relationship to politics, society, and literary criticism. In addition to pursuing these topics, The Poet Resigns peers into the role of the critic and the manifesto, the nature of wit, the poetics of play, and the persistence of modernism, while providing detailed readings of poets as diverse as Harryette Mullen and Yvor Winters, George Oppen and Robert Pinsky, Pablo Neruda and C.S. Giscombe. Behind it all is a sense of poetry not just as an academic area of study, but also as a lived experience and a way of understanding. Few books of poetry criticism show such range - yet the core questions remain clear: what is this thing we love and call 'poetry,' and what is its consequence in the world?