From New York Times bestselling author of Utopia for Realists comes a "bold" (Daniel H. Pink) and "extraordinary" (Susan Cain) argument that humans thrive in a crisis and that our innate kindness and cooperation have been the greatest factors in our long-term success on the planet. If there is one belief that has united the left and the right, psychologists and philosophers, ancient thinkers and modern ones, it is the tacit assumption that humans are bad. It's a notion that drives newspaper headlines and guides the laws that shape our lives. From Machiavelli to Hobbes, Freud to Pinker, the roots of this belief have sunk deep into Western thought. Human beings, we're taught, are by nature selfish and governed primarily by self-interest. But what if it isn't true? International bestseller Rutger Bregman provides new perspective on the past 200,000 years of human history, setting out to prove that we are hardwired for kindness, geared toward cooperation rather than competition, and more inclined to trust rather than distrust one another. In fact this instinct has a firm evolutionary basis going back to the beginning of Homo sapiens. From the real-life Lord of the Flies to the solidarity in the aftermath of the Blitz, the hidden flaws in the Stanford prison experiment to the true story of twin brothers on opposite sides who helped Mandela end apartheid, Bregman shows us that believing in human generosity and collaboration isn't merely optimistic—it's realistic. Moreover, it has huge implications for how society functions. When we think the worst of people, it brings out the worst in our politics and economics. But if we believe in the reality of humanity's kindness and altruism, it will form the foundation for achieving true change in society, a case that Bregman makes convincingly with his signature wit, refreshing frankness, and memorable storytelling. Instant New York Times Bestseller. "The Sapiens of 2020." —The Guardian "Humankind made me see humanity from a fresh perspective." —Yuval Noah Harari, author of the #1 bestseller Sapiens Longlisted for the 2021 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction One of the Washington Post's 50 Notable Nonfiction Works in 2020

Author ,
Isbn 0316418552
Genre History
Year 2020-06-02
Pages 480
Language English
File format PDF

This Wall Street Journal Bestseller, USA Today Bestseller and Canadian Book Club Award Winner is filled with true stories about how one small deed can make a world of difference. "Elegant and wise" (Deepak Chopra), "The most uplifting and life-affirming book in years." (Forbes) Brad Aronson's life changed in an instant when his wife, Mia, was diagnosed with leukemia. After her diagnosis, Brad spent most of the next two and a half years either by her side as she received treatment or trying to shield their five-year-old son, Jack, from the worst of Mia's illness. Amid the stress and despair of waiting for the treatment to work, Brad and Mia were met by an outpouring of kindness from friends, family and even complete strangers. Inspired by the many demonstrations of "humankindness" that supported their family through Mia's recovery, Brad began writing about the people who rescued his family from that dark time, often with the smallest of gestures. But he didn't stop there. Knowing that simple acts of kindness transform lives across the globe every day, he sought out these stories and shares some of the best ones here. In HumanKind, you'll meet the mentor who changed a child's life with a single lesson in shoe tying, the six-year-old who launched a global kindness movement, the band of seamstress grandmothers who mend clothes for homeless people, and many other heroes. Brad also provides dozens of ways you can make a difference through the simplest words and deeds. You'll discover how buying someone a meal or sharing a little encouragement at the right time can change someone's world, as well as your own. The resource section at the back of the book provides guidance and organizations that will help you channel and amplify your own acts of kindness. Here you'll discover: How you can fund a surgery to cure someone's blindness with a donation of less than $200. Organizations through which you can provide a birthday gift for a child who otherwise wouldn't receive one. Multiple places where you can send letters of encouragement to support hospitalized kids, lonely seniors, refugees, veterans and others in need. And over fifty more ways you can change a life. HumanKind will leave you grateful for what you have and provide a refuge from the negativity that surrounds us. This feel-good book will touch your heart. You'll laugh, you'll cry and you'll be reminded of what really matters. All author royalties go to Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Author Brad Aronson
Isbn 1928055648
Genre Social Science
Year 2020-04-14
Pages N.A
Language English
File format PDF

A plane crashes on a desert island and the only survivors, a group of schoolboys, assemble on the beach and wait to be rescued. By day they inhabit a land of bright fantastic birds and dark blue seas, but at night their dreams are haunted by the image of a terrifying beast. As the boys' delicate sense of order fades, so their childish dreams are transformed into something more primitive, and their behaviour starts to take on a murderous, savage significance. First published in 1954, Lord of the Flies is one of the most celebrated and widely read of modern classics. Now fully revised and updated, this educational edition includes chapter summaries, comprehension questions, discussion points, classroom activities, a biographical profile of Golding, historical context relevant to the novel and an essay on Lord of the Flies by William Golding entitled 'Fable'. Aimed at Key Stage 3 and 4 students, it also includes a section on literary theory for advanced or A-level students. The educational edition encourages original and independent thinking while guiding the student through the text - ideal for use in the classroom and at home.

Author William Golding
Isbn 0571290582
Genre Fiction
Year 2012-09-20
Pages 256
Language English
File format PDF

A moving portrait of a father and daughter relationship and a case for late-stage creativity from Emily Urquhart, the bestselling author of Beyond the Pale: Folklore, Family, and the Mystery of Our Hidden Genes. “The fundamental misunderstanding of our time is that we belong to one age group or another. We all grow old. There is no us and them. There was only ever an us.” — from The Age of Creativity It has long been thought that artistic output declines in old age. When Emily Urquhart and her family celebrated the eightieth birthday of her father, the illustrious painter Tony Urquhart, she found it remarkable that, although his pace had slowed, he was continuing his daily art practice of drawing, painting, and constructing large-scale sculptures, and was even innovating his style. Was he defying the odds, or is it possible that some assumptions about the elderly are flat-out wrong? After all, many well-known visual artists completed their best work in the last decade of their lives, Turner, Monet, and Cézanne among them. With the eye of a memoirist and the curiosity of a journalist, Urquhart began an investigation into late-stage creativity, asking: Is it possible that our best work is ahead of us? Is there an expiry date on creativity? Do we ever really know when we’ve done anything for the last time? The Age of Creativity is a graceful, intimate blend of research on ageing and creativity, including on progressive senior-led organizations, such as a home for elderly theatre performers and a gallery in New York City that only represents artists over sixty, and her experiences living and travelling with her father. Emily Urquhart reveals how creative work, both amateur and professional, sustains people in the third act of their lives, and tells a new story about the possibilities of elder-hood.

Author Emily Urquhart
Isbn 1487005326
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2020-09-01
Pages 232
Language English
File format PDF

From 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, a captivating account of how "a skinny Asian kid from upstate" became a successful entrepreneur, only to find a new mission: calling attention to the urgent steps America must take, including Universal Basic Income, to stabilize our economy amid rapid technological change and automation. The shift toward automation is about to create a tsunami of unemployment. Not in the distant future--now. One recent estimate predicts 45 million American workers will lose their jobs within the next twelve years--jobs that won't be replaced. In a future marked by restlessness and chronic unemployment, what will happen to American society? In The War on Normal People, Andrew Yang paints a dire portrait of the American economy. Rapidly advancing technologies like artificial intelligence, robotics and automation software are making millions of Americans' livelihoods irrelevant. The consequences of these trends are already being felt across our communities in the form of political unrest, drug use, and other social ills. The future looks dire-but is it unavoidable? In The War on Normal People, Yang imagines a different future--one in which having a job is distinct from the capacity to prosper and seek fulfillment. At this vision's core is Universal Basic Income, the concept of providing all citizens with a guaranteed income-and one that is rapidly gaining popularity among forward-thinking politicians and economists. Yang proposes that UBI is an essential step toward a new, more durable kind of economy, one he calls "human capitalism."

Author Andrew Yang
Isbn 0316414255
Genre Political Science
Year 2018-04-03
Pages 304
Language English
File format PDF

Modern humans have come a long way in the seventy thousand years they’ve walked the earth. Art, science, culture, trade—on the evolutionary food chain, we’re true winners. But it hasn’t always been smooth sailing, and sometimes—just occasionally—we’ve managed to truly f*ck things up. Weaving together history, science, politics and pop culture, Humans offers a panoramic exploration of humankind in all its glory, or lack thereof. From Lucy, our first ancestor, who fell out of a tree and died, to General Zhou Shou of China, who stored gunpowder in his palace before a lantern festival, to the Austrian army attacking itself one drunken night, to the most spectacular fails of the present day, Humans reveals how even the most mundane mistakes can shift the course of civilization as we know it. Lively, wry and brimming with brilliant insight, this unique compendium offers a fresh take on world history and is one of the most entertaining reads of the year.

Author Tom Phillips
Isbn 1488051135
Genre History
Year 2019-05-07
Pages N.A
Language English
File format PDF

A TODAY SHOW #ReadWithJenna BOOK CLUB PICK! “Great Circle is a masterpiece . . . One of the best books I’ve ever read.” —J. Courtney Sullivan "A breathtaking epic . . . This is a stunning feat." —Publishers Weekly #1 IndieNext Pick *A Most Anticipated Book of 2021 according to O, The Oprah Magazine; Lit Hub; She Reads; Town & Country; Esquire; and Bustle* An unforgettable story of a daredevil female aviator determined to chart her own course in life, at any cost—Great Circle spans Prohibition-era Montana, the Pacific Northwest, Alaska, New Zealand, wartime London, and modern-day Los Angeles. After being rescued as infants from a sinking ocean liner in 1914, Marian and Jamie Graves are raised by their dissolute uncle in Missoula, Montana. There--after encountering a pair of barnstorming pilots passing through town in beat-up biplanes--Marian commences her lifelong love affair with flight. At fourteen she drops out of school and finds an unexpected and dangerous patron in a wealthy bootlegger who provides a plane and subsidizes her lessons, an arrangement that will haunt her for the rest of her life, even as it allows her to fulfill her destiny: circumnavigating the globe by flying over the North and South Poles. A century later, Hadley Baxter is cast to play Marian in a film that centers on Marian's disappearance in Antarctica. Vibrant, canny, disgusted with the claustrophobia of Hollywood, Hadley is eager to redefine herself after a romantic film franchise has imprisoned her in the grip of cult celebrity. Her immersion into the character of Marian unfolds, thrillingly, alongside Marian's own story, as the two women's fates--and their hunger for self-determination in vastly different geographies and times--collide. Epic and emotional, meticulously researched and gloriously told, Great Circle is a monumental work of art, and a tremendous leap forward for the prodigiously gifted Maggie Shipstead.

Author Maggie Shipstead
Isbn 0525656987
Genre Fiction
Year 2021-05-04
Pages 608
Language English
File format PDF

New York Times best-selling author and primatologist Frans de Waal explores the fascinating world of animal and human emotions. Frans de Waal has spent four decades at the forefront of animal research. Following up on the best-selling Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?, which investigated animal intelligence, Mama’s Last Hug delivers a fascinating exploration of the rich emotional lives of animals. Mama’s Last Hug begins with the death of Mama, a chimpanzee matriarch who formed a deep bond with biologist Jan van Hooff. When Mama was dying, van Hooff took the unusual step of visiting her in her night cage for a last hug. Their goodbyes were filmed and went viral. Millions of people were deeply moved by the way Mama embraced the professor, welcoming him with a big smile while reassuring him by patting his neck, in a gesture often considered typically human but that is in fact common to all primates. This story and others like it form the core of de Waal’s argument, showing that humans are not the only species with the capacity for love, hate, fear, shame, guilt, joy, disgust, and empathy. De Waal discusses facial expressions, the emotions behind human politics, the illusion of free will, animal sentience, and, of course, Mama’s life and death. The message is one of continuity between us and other species, such as the radical proposal that emotions are like organs: we don’t have a single organ that other animals don’t have, and the same is true for our emotions. Mama’s Last Hug opens our hearts and minds to the many ways in which humans and other animals are connected, transforming how we view the living world around us.

Author Frans de Waal
Isbn 0393635074
Genre Science
Year 2019-03-12
Pages 336
Language English
File format PDF

This is a story of tides and coastlines, winds and waves, islands and beaches. It is also a retelling of indigenous creativity, agency, and resistance in the face of unprecedented globalization and violence. Waves Across the South shifts the narrative of the Age of Revolutions and the origins of the British Empire; it foregrounds a vast southern zone that ranges from the Arabian Sea and southwest Indian Ocean across to the Bay of Bengal, and onward to the South Pacific and the Tasman Sea. As the empires of the Dutch, French, and especially the British reached across these regions, they faced a surge of revolutionary sentiment. Long-standing venerable Eurasian empires, established patterns of trade and commerce, and indigenous practice also served as a context for this transformative era. In addition to bringing long-ignored people and events to the fore, Sujit Sivasundaram opens the door to new and necessary conversations about environmental history, the consequences of historical violence, the legacies of empire, the extraction of resources, and the indigenous futures that Western imperialism cut short. The result is nothing less than a bold new way of understanding our global past, one that also helps us think afresh about our shared future.

Author Sujit Sivasundaram
Isbn 022679055X
Genre History
Year 2021-05-10
Pages 496
Language English
File format PDF

If you can speak and read English, you can write poetry. The trick is knowing where to start. Stephen Fry, who has long written poems, and indeed has written long poems, for his own private pleasure, invites you to discover the incomparable delights of metre, rhyme and verse forms. Whether you want to write a Petrarchan sonnet for your lover's birthday, an epithalamion for your sister's wedding or a villanelle excoriating the government's housing policy, The Ode Less Travelled will give you the tools and the confidence to do so. Brimful of enjoyable exercises, witty insights and simple step-by-step advice, The Ode Less Travelled guides the reader towards mastery and confidence in the Mother of the Arts.

Author Stephen Fry
Isbn 1407088432
Genre Language Arts & Disciplines
Year 2010-07-06
Pages 384
Language English
File format PDF

Ideas are everywhere, but those with the greatest problem-solving, business-transforming, and life-changing potential are often hard to identify. Even when we recognize good ideas, applying them to everyday obstacles—whether in the workplace, our homes, or our civic institutions—can seem insurmountable. According to Matthew Syed, it doesn't have to be this way. In Rebel Ideas, Syed argues that our brainpower as individuals isn't enough. To tackle problems from climate change to economic decline, we'll need to employ the power of "cognitive diversity." Drawing on psychology, genetics, and beyond, Syed uses real-world scenarios including the failings of the CIA before 9/11 and a communication disaster at the peak of Mount Everest to introduce us to the true power of thinking differently. Rebel Ideas will strengthen any kind of team, while including advice on how, as individuals, we can embrace the potential of an "outsider mind-set" as our greatest asset. Matthew Syed is the Sunday Times bestselling author of Black Box Thinking, Bounce, and The Greatest. He writes an award-winning newspaper column in The Times and is the host of the hugely successful BBC podcast Flintoff, Savage and the Ping Pong Guy.

Author Matthew Syed
Isbn 1250769906
Genre Business & Economics
Year 2021-05-11
Pages 336
Language English
File format PDF

Evolutionary science is critical to an understanding of integrated human biology and is increasingly recognised as a core discipline by medical and public health professionals. Advances in the field of genomics, epigenetics, developmental biology, and epidemiology have led to the growing realisation that incorporating evolutionary thinking is essential for medicine to achieve its full potential. This revised and updated second edition of the first comprehensive textbook of evolutionary medicine explains the principles of evolutionary biology from a medical perspective and focuses on how medicine and public health might utilise evolutionary thinking. It is written to be accessible to a broad range of readers, whether or not they have had formal exposure to evolutionary science. The general structure of the second edition remains unchanged, with the initial six chapters providing a summary of the evolutionary theory relevant to understanding human health and disease, using examples specifically relevant to medicine. The second part of the book describes the application of evolutionary principles to understanding particular aspects of human medicine: in addition to updated chapters on reproduction, metabolism, and behaviour, there is an expanded chapter on our coexistence with micro-organisms and an entirely new chapter on cancer. The two parts are bridged by a chapter that details pathways by which evolutionary processes affect disease risk and symptoms, and how hypotheses in evolutionary medicine can be tested. The final two chapters of the volume are considerably expanded; they illustrate the application of evolutionary biology to medicine and public health, and consider the ethical and societal issues of an evolutionary perspective. A number of new clinical examples and historical illustrations are included. This second edition of a novel and popular textbook provides an updated resource for doctors and other health professionals, medical students and biomedical scientists, as well as anthropologists interested in human health, to gain a better understanding of the evolutionary processes underlying human health and disease.

Author Peter Gluckman,Alan Beedle,Tatjana Buklijas,Felicia Low,Mark Hanson
Isbn 0191083402
Genre Science
Year 2016-03-17
Pages 400
Language English
File format PDF

Three brothers and their relations in 19th century Russia provide the base for a sweeping epic overview of human striving, folly and hope. First published in 1880, The Brothers Karamazov is a landmark work in every respect. Revolving around shiftless father Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov are the fates of his three sons, each of whom has fortunes entwined with the others. The eldest son, Dimitri, seeks an inheritance from his father and becomes his rival in love. Ivan, the second son, is so at odds with the world that he is driven near to madness, while the youngest, Alexi, is a man of faith and a natural optimist. These personalities are drawn out and tested in a crucible of conflict and emotion as the author forces upon them fundamental questions of morality, faith, reason and responsibility. This charged situation is pushed to its limit by the addition of the unthinkable, murder and possible patricide. Using shifting viewpoints and delving into the minds of his characters, Dostoevsky adopted fresh techniques to tell his wide-reaching story with power and startling effectiveness. The Brothers Karamazov remains one of the most respected and celebrated novels in all literature and continues to reward readers beyond expectation. With an eye-catching new cover, and professionally typeset manuscript, this edition of The Brothers Karamazov is both modern and readable.

Author Fyodor Dostoevsky
Isbn 151326821X
Genre Fiction
Year 2020-10-06
Pages 890
Language English
File format PDF

"Fresh, original, heartbreaking" Reni Eddo-Lodge "Devastating, hilarious, unlike anything I have ever read. Destined to be a classic" Pandora Sykes Thirteen-year-old Byron needs to get away, and doesn't care how. Sick of being beaten up by lads for "talkin' like a poof" after school. Sick of dad - the weightlifting, womanising Gaz - and Mam, who pissed off to Turkey like Shirley Valentine. Sick of all the people in Hucknall who shuffle about like the living dead, going on about kitchens they're too skint to do up and marriages they're too scared to leave. It's a new millennium, Madonna's 'Music' is top of the charts and there's a whole world to explore - and Byron's happy to beg, steal and skank onto a rollercoaster ride of hedonism. Life explodes like a rush of ecstasy when Byron escapes into Nottingham's kinetic underworld and discovers the East Midlands' premier podium-dancer-cum-hellraiser, the mesmerising Lady Die. But when the comedown finally kicks in, Byron arrives at a shocking encounter that will change life forever. Bold, poignant and riotously funny, What It Feels Like For a Girl is the unique, hotly-anticipated and addictively-readable debut from one of Britain's most exciting young writers.

Author Paris Lees
Isbn 0141993073
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2021-05-27
Pages 272
Language English
File format PDF

What if saving the world was good for you? That’s my promise in The Happy Hero. That you can be happier and healthier simply by making a difference to the world around you. I call this formula ‘positive+action’, and after decades of researching, writing about and living positive+action I’ve become convinced this the answer to enjoying a better life. I want to tell you stories of the people who have already discovered this secret. And set out the principles for how to feel good by doing good. Which sounds simple. Except that there’s so much that needs to change, where do you even start? Everyday our media finds another international crisis or health scare, another predator or disaster. We are subject to an overwhelming barrage of fear and negativity each time we open our phones or switch on the TV. We have been trained out of happiness by these stories and turned into the victims of our own lives rather than the heroes. The Happy Hero will offer a simple solution: stop worrying about the world and start making it better. Because new research shows that trying to make a difference, even in the smallest ways, can extend your life, improve your relationships and even help you recover from a cold! And luckily, many of the changes we need to make to build a better world, we should want to do anyway. In The Happy Hero I’ll share the emerging evidence of how heroism can make you happy. I’ll also provide practical examples for getting started. This book will even take on the most intractable and complicated problem facing all of us: climate change. And we’ll discover how solving it will solve so much more. The UK’s top medical journal recently reported that the best way to protect your heart and slim your waistline is to count the carbon rather than calories in your food. The US Military insists that renewable energy will make our countries energy independent and help reduce conflict by providing cheaper sources of power to the poorest. In our own lives, we know that saving energy simply saves money. Together we can cut even huge challenges like climate change down to size. And every step and every action will come with their own reward.

Author Solitaire Townsend
Isbn 1911586386
Genre Nature
Year 2017-10-10
Pages 224
Language English
File format PDF

“A fascinating new analysis of human violence, filled with fresh ideas and gripping evidence from our primate cousins, historical forebears, and contemporary neighbors.” —Steven Pinker, author of The Better Angels of Our Nature We Homo sapiens can be the nicest of species and also the nastiest. What occurred during human evolution to account for this paradox? What are the two kinds of aggression that primates are prone to, and why did each evolve separately? How does the intensity of violence among humans compare with the aggressive behavior of other primates? How did humans domesticate themselves? And how were the acquisition of language and the practice of capital punishment determining factors in the rise of culture and civilization? Authoritative, provocative, and engaging, The Goodness Paradox offers a startlingly original theory of how, in the last 250 million years, humankind became an increasingly peaceful species in daily interactions even as its capacity for coolly planned and devastating violence remains undiminished. In tracing the evolutionary histories of reactive and proactive aggression, biological anthropologist Richard Wrangham forcefully and persuasively argues for the necessity of social tolerance and the control of savage divisiveness still haunting us today.

Author Richard Wrangham
Isbn 1101870915
Genre Science
Year 2019-01-29
Pages 400
Language English
File format PDF

Told through the prism of the lives of 21 extraordinary women, this remarkable book offers an alternative vision of Irish history – one that puts the spotlight on women whose contributions have been forgotten or overlooked. Author Clodagh Finn travels through the ages to ‘meet’, among others, Macha, the Celtic horse goddess of Ulster; St Dahalin, an early Irish saint and miracle worker; Jo Hiffernan, painter and muse to the artists Whistler and Courbet; Jennie Hodgers, a woman who fought as a male soldier in the American Civil War; Sr Concepta Lynch, businesswoman, Dominican sister and painter of a unique Celtic shrine; the Overend sisters, farmers, charity workers and motoring enthusiasts; and Rosemary Gibb, athlete, social worker, clown and accomplished magician. From a Stone Age farmer who lived in Co. Clare more than 5,000 years ago to the modern-day founder of a 3D printing company, this book opens a fascinating window onto the life and times of some amazing women whose stories were shaped by the centuries in which they lived.

Author Clodagh Finn
Isbn 0717183211
Genre History
Year 2019-10-11
Pages 368
Language English
File format PDF

New York Times Bestseller Discover the critical link between your brain and the food you eat and change the way your brain ages, in this cutting-edge, practical guide to eliminating brain fog, optimizing brain health, and achieving peak mental performance from media personality and leading voice in health Max Lugavere. After his mother was diagnosed with a mysterious form of dementia, Max Lugavere put his successful media career on hold to learn everything he could about brain health and performance. For the better half of a decade, he consumed the most up-to-date scientific research, talked to dozens of leading scientists and clinicians around the world, and visited the country’s best neurology departments—all in the hopes of understanding his mother’s condition. Now, in Genius Foods, Lugavere presents a comprehensive guide to brain optimization. He uncovers the stunning link between our dietary and lifestyle choices and our brain functions, revealing how the foods you eat directly affect your ability to focus, learn, remember, create, analyze new ideas, and maintain a balanced mood. Weaving together pioneering research on dementia prevention, cognitive optimization, and nutritional psychiatry, Lugavere distills groundbreaking science into actionable lifestyle changes. He shares invaluable insights into how to improve your brain power, including the nutrients that can boost your memory and improve mental clarity (and where to find them); the foods and tactics that can energize and rejuvenate your brain, no matter your age; a brain-boosting fat-loss method so powerful it has been called “biochemical liposuction”; and the foods that can improve your happiness, both now and for the long term. With Genius Foods, Lugavere offers a cutting-edge yet practical road map to eliminating brain fog and optimizing the brain’s health and performance today—and decades into the future.

Author Max Lugavere,Paul Grewal, M.D.
Isbn 0062562894
Genre Health & Fitness
Year 2018-03-20
Pages 400
Language English
File format PDF

A critically acclaimed New York Times bestselling author explores the Christmas holiday, from the original festival through present day traditions. Christmas has always been a magical time. Or has it? Thirty years after the first recorded Christmas, the Pope was already warning that too many people were spending the day, not in worship, but in partying and eating to excess. By 1616, the playwright Ben Jonson was nostalgically remembering Christmas in the old days, certain that it had been better then. Other elements of Christmas are much newer – who would have thought gift-wrap is a novelty of the twentieth century? That the first holiday parade was neither at Macy’s, nor even in the USA? Some things, however, never change. The first known gag holiday gift book, The Boghouse Miscellany, was advertised in the 1760s ‘for gay Gallants, and good companions’, while in 1805, the leaders of the Lewis and Clark expedition exchanged – what else? – presents of underwear and socks. Christmas is all things to all people: a religious festival, a family celebration, a period of eating and drinking. In Christmas: A Biography, bestselling author and acclaimed social historian Judith Flanders casts a sharp eye on myths, legends and history, deftly moving from the origins of the holiday in the Roman empire, through Christmas trees in central Europe, to what might be the first appearance of Santa Claus – in Switzerland – to draw a picture of the season as it has never been seen before.

Author Judith Flanders
Isbn 1250118352
Genre History
Year 2017-10-24
Pages 304
Language English
File format PDF

"The most important book at the borderland of psychology and politics that I have ever read."—Martin E. P. Seligman, Zellerbach Family Professor of Psychology at that University of Pennsylvania and author of Learned Optimism Why are we devastated by a word of criticism even when it’s mixed with lavish praise? Because our brains are wired to focus on the bad. This negativity effect explains things great and small: why countries blunder into disastrous wars, why couples divorce, why people flub job interviews, how schools fail students, why football coaches stupidly punt on fourth down. All day long, the power of bad governs people’s moods, drives marketing campaigns, and dominates news and politics. Eminent social scientist Roy F. Baumeister stumbled unexpectedly upon this fundamental aspect of human nature. To find out why financial losses mattered more to people than financial gains, Baumeister looked for situations in which good events made a bigger impact than bad ones. But his team couldn’t find any. Their research showed that bad is relentlessly stronger than good, and their paper has become one of the most-cited in the scientific literature. Our brain’s negativity bias makes evolutionary sense because it kept our ancestors alert to fatal dangers, but it distorts our perspective in today’s media environment. The steady barrage of bad news and crisismongering makes us feel helpless and leaves us needlessly fearful and angry. We ignore our many blessings, preferring to heed—and vote for—the voices telling us the world is going to hell. But once we recognize our negativity bias, the rational brain can overcome the power of bad when it’s harmful and employ that power when it’s beneficial. In fact, bad breaks and bad feelings create the most powerful incentives to become smarter and stronger. Properly understood, bad can be put to perfectly good use. As noted science journalist John Tierney and Baumeister show in this wide-ranging book, we can adopt proven strategies to avoid the pitfalls that doom relationships, careers, businesses, and nations. Instead of despairing at what’s wrong in your life and in the world, you can see how much is going right—and how to make it still better.

Author John Tierney,Roy F. Baumeister
Isbn 1101616466
Genre Psychology
Year 2019-12-31
Pages 336
Language English
File format PDF