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On Trees, Evolution, and Society
With a lifetime of work in forestry and genetics to guide him, University of Washington professor emeritus of forestry Reinhard Stettler offers lessons in how nature works, as well as how science can help us understand it.
The Greening of the San Francisco Bay Area
The San Francisco Bay Area is one of the world's most beautiful cities. Despite a population of 7 million people, it is more greensward than asphalt jungle, more open space than hardscape. A vast quilt of countryside is tucked into the folds of the metropolis, stitched from fields, farms and woodlands, mines, creeks, and wetlands. In The Country in the City, Richard Walker tells the story of how the jigsaw geography of this greenbelt has been set into place.
Fiction, Film and Social Change
Scandinavian popular novels and films have flourished in the last thirty years. In Crime and Fantasy in Scandinavia, Andrew Nestingen argues that the growth and visibility of popular culture have been at the heart of the development of heterogeneous "publics" in Scandinavia, in opposition to the homogenizing influence of the post-World War II welfare state. Novels and films have mobilized readers and viewers, serving as a preeminent site for debates over individualism, collectivity, national homogeneity, gender, and transnational relations.
Crime and Fantasy in Scandinavia provides insight into the changing nature of civil society in Scandinavia through the lens of popular culture. Nestingen develops his argument through the examination of genres where the central theme is individual transgression of societal norms: crime films and novels, melodramas, and fantasy fiction. Among the internationally known writers and filmmakers discussed are Henning Mankell, Aki Kaurismäki, Lukas Moodysson, and Lars von Trier.
Dagur Kari’s Noi the Albino (Noi albinoi, 2003) succeeded on the international festival circuit as a film that was both distinctively Icelandic and appealingly universal. Noi the Albino taps into perennial themes of escapism and existential angst, while its setting in the Westfjords of Iceland provided an almost surreal backdrop whose particularities of place are uniquely Icelandic. Bjorn Nordfjord’s examination of the film integrates the broad context and history of Icelandic cinema into a close reading of Noi the Albino’s themes, visual style, and key scenes. The book also includes an interview with director Dagur Kari.
Noi the Albino’s successful negotiation of the tensions between the local and the global contribute to the film’s status as a contemporary classic. Its place within the history of Icelandic cinema highlights the specific problems this small nation faces as it pursues its filmmaking ambitions, allowing us to appreciate the remarkable success of Kari’s film in relation to the challenges of transnational filmmaking.
Breaking Cycles of Poverty in Brazil and Beyond
In a narrative brimming with honesty and grace, Dance Lest We All Fall Down unfolds the story of how friendship, when combined with courage, insight, and passion, can transform dreams of a better world into reality.
Danish Folktales, Legends, and Other Stories is a collection of translated and annotated Nordic folklore that presents full repertoires of five storytellers along with extensive archival material. The printed book presents some of the most compelling stories of these five important storytellers along with historical and biographical introductions. Of a length suitable for course use, it provides a substantive and enjoyable encounter with Danish folklore. The Danish Folklore Nexus on the accompanying DVD includes the storytellers' full repertoires plus 500 additional stories in both Danish and English along with essays on the changing political, social, and economic landscapes of nineteenth-century Denmark, the history of folklore scholarship, critical approaches to folklore, and comprehensive biographies of the storytellers. It also provides links between related stories and interactive maps that allow readers to see where the stories are set and where they were collected, and a mechanism to search for themes and topics across all the stories.
The basis of the work is the collection of Evald Tang Kristensen (1843-1929). As a young schoolteacher Kristensen set out across Denmark to collect the folktales, ballads, legends, and stories that he saw as the vestiges of a disappearing folk culture. Over the course of five decades he collected thousands of stories and kept detailed biographical notes about the storytellers he met.