American History

Terrorism for Self-Glorification: The Herostratos Syndrome

Terrorism for Self-Glorification: The Herostratos Syndrome

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"A unique work of. . . history, made all the more interesting by its relevance to the time in which we live."
--James R. Elkins, editor of Legal Studies Forum

In this timely study of the roots of terrorism, author Albert Borowitz deftly assesses the phenomenon of violent crime motivated by a craving for notoriety or self-glorification. He traces this particular brand of terrorism back to 356 BCE and the destruction of the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus by arsonist Herostratos and then examines similar crimes through history to the present time, detailing many examples of what the author calls the "Herostratos Syndrome," such as the attempted explosion of the Greenwich Observatory in 1894, the Taliban's destruction of the giant Buddhas in Afghanistan, the assassination of John Lennon, the Unabomber strikes, and the attacks on the World Trade Center buildings.

The study of terrorism requires interdisciplinary inquiry. Proving that terrorism cannot be the exclusive focus of a single field of scholarship, Borowitz presents this complex subject using sources based in religion, philosophy, history, Greek mythology, and world literature, including works of Chaucer, Cervantes, Mark Twain, and Jean-Paul Sartre.

Terrorism for Self-Glorification, written in clear and direct prose, is original, thorough, and thought provoking. Scholars, specialists, and general readers will find their understanding of terrorism greatly enhanced by this book.

The Negro Family: The Case for National Action (Moynihan Report) (USED)
The Negro Family: The Case for National Action (Moynihan Report) (USED)
The Negro Family: The Case for National Action (Moynihan Report) (USED)

The Negro Family: The Case for National Action (The Moynihan Report)

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The Negro Family: The Case For National Action, commonly known as the Moynihan Report, was a 1965 report on black poverty in the United States written by Daniel Patrick Moynihan, an American sociologist serving as Assistant Secretary of Labor under President Lyndon B. Johnson. The report's conclusions remain controversial. Ibram X. Kendi cites the report in his book, How to Be An Antiracist (p. 183).

Published by the Office of Policy Planning and Research, U.S. Department of Labor, March 1965. Softcover; some wear and tear to covers; rear cover bottom corner creased. G

The Black Man in White America, Revised Edition (USED)

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The Bully Pulpit

The Bully Pulpit

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One of the Best Books of the Year as chosen by The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Economist, Time, USA TODAY, Christian Science Monitor, and more. "A tale so gripping that one questions the need for fiction when real life is so plump with drama and intrigue" (Associated Press).

Doris Kearns Goodwin's The Bully Pulpit is a dynamic history of the first decade of the Progressive era, that tumultuous time when the nation was coming unseamed and reform was in the air.

The story is told through the intense friendship of Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft--a close relationship that strengthens both men before it ruptures in 1912, when they engage in a brutal fight for the presidential nomination that divides their wives, their children, and their closest friends, while crippling the progressive wing of the Republican Party, causing Democrat Woodrow Wilson to be elected, and changing the country's history.

The Bully Pulpit is also the story of the muckraking press, which arouses the spirit of reform that helps Roosevelt push the government to shed its laissez-faire attitude toward robber barons, corrupt politicians, and corporate exploiters of our natural resources. The muckrakers are portrayed through the greatest group of journalists ever assembled at one magazine--Ida Tarbell, Ray Stannard Baker, Lincoln Steffens, and William Allen White--teamed under the mercurial genius of publisher S.S. McClure.

Goodwin's narrative is founded upon a wealth of primary materials. The correspondence of more than four hundred letters between Roosevelt and Taft begins in their early thirties and ends only months before Roosevelt's death. Edith Roosevelt and Nellie Taft kept diaries. The muckrakers wrote hundreds of letters to one another, kept journals, and wrote their memoirs. The letters of Captain Archie Butt, who served as a personal aide to both Roosevelt and Taft, provide an intimate view of both men.

The Bully Pulpit, like Goodwin's brilliant chronicles of the Civil War and World War II, exquisitely demonstrates her distinctive ability to combine scholarly rigor with accessibility. It is a major work of history--an examination of leadership in a rare moment of activism and reform that brought the country closer to its founding ideals.

The Child's Story of the Negro, illustrated by Lois Mailou Jones (USED)
The Child's Story of the Negro, illustrated by Lois Mailou Jones (USED)

The Child's Story of the Negro, illustrated by Lois Mailou Jones (USED)

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The Associated Publishers, Washington, DC, 1965. Good. X-Lib. Revised edition of the original from 1956.

The Color of Law

The Color of Law

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In this groundbreaking history of the modern American metropolis, Richard Rothstein, a leading authority on housing policy, explodes the myth that America's cities came to be racially divided through de facto segregation--that is, through individual prejudices, income differences, or the actions of private institutions like banks and real estate agencies. Rather, The Color of Law incontrovertibly makes clear that it was de jure segregation--the laws and policy decisions passed by local, state, and federal governments--that actually promoted the discriminatory patterns that continue to this day.

Through extraordinary revelations and extensive research that Ta-Nehisi Coates has lauded as "brilliant" (The Atlantic), Rothstein comes to chronicle nothing less than an untold story that begins in the 1920s, showing how this process of de jure segregation began with explicit racial zoning, as millions of African Americans moved in a great historical migration from the south to the north.

As Jane Jacobs established in her classic The Death and Life of Great American Cities, it was the deeply flawed urban planning of the 1950s that created many of the impoverished neighborhoods we know. Now, Rothstein expands our understanding of this history, showing how government policies led to the creation of officially segregated public housing and the demolition of previously integrated neighborhoods. While urban areas rapidly deteriorated, the great American suburbanization of the post-World War II years was spurred on by federal subsidies for builders on the condition that no homes be sold to African Americans. Finally, Rothstein shows how police and prosecutors brutally upheld these standards by supporting violent resistance to black families in white neighborhoods.

The Fair Housing Act of 1968 prohibited future discrimination but did nothing to reverse residential patterns that had become deeply embedded. Yet recent outbursts of violence in cities like Baltimore, Ferguson, and Minneapolis show us precisely how the legacy of these earlier eras contributes to persistent racial unrest. "The American landscape will never look the same to readers of this important book" (Sherrilyn Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund), as Rothstein's invaluable examination shows that only by relearning this history can we finally pave the way for the nation to remedy its unconstitutional past.

The Dead Are Arising

The Dead Are Arising

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Les Payne, the renowned Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist, embarked in 1990 on a nearly thirty-year-long quest to interview anyone he could find who had actually known Malcolm X--all living siblings of the Malcolm Little family, classmates, street friends, cellmates, Nation of Islam figures, FBI moles and cops, and political leaders around the world. His goal was ambitious: to transform what would become over a hundred hours of interviews into an unprecedented portrait of Malcolm X, one that would separate fact from fiction.

The result is this historic biography that conjures a never-before-seen world of its protagonist, a work whose title is inspired by a phrase Malcolm X used when he saw his Hartford followers stir with purpose, as if the dead were truly arising, to overcome the obstacles of racism. Setting Malcolm's life not only within the Nation of Islam but against the larger backdrop of American history, the book traces the life of one of the twentieth century's most politically relevant figures "from street criminal to devoted moralist and revolutionary."

In tracing Malcolm X's life from his Nebraska birth in 1925 to his Harlem assassination in 1965, Payne provides searing vignettes culled from Malcolm's Depression-era youth, describing the influence of his Garveyite parents: his father, Earl, a circuit-riding preacher who was run over by a street car in Lansing, Michigan, in 1929, and his mother, Louise, who continued to instill black pride in her children after Earl's death. Filling each chapter with resonant drama, Payne follows Malcolm's exploits as a petty criminal in Boston and Harlem in the 1930s and early 1940s to his religious awakening and conversion to the Nation of Islam in a Massachusetts penitentiary.

With a biographer's unwavering determination, Payne corrects the historical record and delivers extraordinary revelations--from the unmasking of the mysterious NOI founder "Fard Muhammad," who preceded Elijah Muhammad; to a hair-rising scene, conveyed in cinematic detail, of Malcolm and Minister Jeremiah X Shabazz's 1961 clandestine meeting with the KKK; to a minute-by-minute account of Malcolm X's murder at the Audubon Ballroom.

Introduced by Payne's daughter and primary researcher, Tamara Payne, who, following her father's death, heroically completed the biography, The Dead Are Arising is a penetrating and riveting work that affirms the centrality of Malcolm X to the African American freedom struggle.

The Fire This Time

The Fire This Time

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The New York Times bestseller, these groundbreaking essays and poems about race--collected by National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward and written by the most important voices of her generation--are "thoughtful, searing, and at times, hopeful. The Fire This Time is vivid proof that words are important, because of their power to both cleanse and to clarify" (USA TODAY).

In this bestselling, widely lauded collection, Jesmyn Ward gathers our most original thinkers and writers to speak on contemporary racism and race, including Carol Anderson, Jericho Brown, Edwidge Danticat, Kevin Young, Claudia Rankine, and Honoree Jeffers. "An absolutely indispensable anthology" (Booklist, starred review), The Fire This Time shines a light on the darkest corners of our history, wrestles with our current predicament, and imagines a better future.

Envisioned as a response to The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin's groundbreaking 1963 essay collection, these contemporary writers reflect on the past, present, and future of race in America. We've made significant progress in the fifty-odd years since Baldwin's essays were published, but America is a long and painful distance away from a "post-racial society"--a truth we must confront if we are to continue to work towards change. Baldwin's "fire next time" is now upon us, and it needs to be talked about; The Fire This Time "seeks to place the shock of our own times into historical context and, most importantly, to move these times forward" (Vogue).

The Making of Cleveland's Black Suburb in the City: Lee-Seville & Lee-Harvard

The Making of Cleveland's Black Suburb in the City: Lee-Seville & Lee-Harvard

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Hear Dr. Todd Michney and Kathleen Crowther discuss this book and the historic Lee-Harvard area on the Lines of Loganberry podcast on Spotify.

Our story starts just west of the intersection of Lee and Seville Roads, where a Black enclave took shape in the 1920s. By establishing a foothold in Cleveland's far southeastern reaches, African Americans laid the successful groundwork for this vicinity to develop as a Black "suburb in the city." This book, the first-ever published history of these neighborhoods, documents and celebrates a success story, a Cleveland case of Black community-building. The making of Lee-Seville and Lee-Harvard unfolded under remarkable circumstances and against considerable odds, thereby offering an instructive example of the life possibilities that some Black Americans in earlier generations were able to create at the city's outskirts.The Cleveland Restoration Society, a regional historic preservation non-profit, has worked for the past several years collecting community history, interviewing and filming residents of the neighborhood and scouring archives and private collections for historical images that help tell the story of this remarkable place.

The Problem of Democracy

The Problem of Democracy

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Told with authority and style. . . Crisply summarizing the Adamses' legacy, the authors stress principle over partisanship.--The Wall Street Journal

How the father and son presidents foresaw the rise of the cult of personality and fought those who sought to abuse the weaknesses inherent in our democracy.

Until now, no one has properly dissected the intertwined lives of the second and sixth (father and son) presidents. John and John Quincy Adams were brilliant, prickly politicians and arguably the most independently minded among leaders of the founding generation. Distrustful of blind allegiance to a political party, they brought a healthy skepticism of a brand-new system of government to the country's first 50 years. They were unpopular for their fears of the potential for demagoguery lurking in democracy, and--in a twist that predicted the turn of twenty-first century politics--they warned against, but were unable to stop, the seductive appeal of political celebrities Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson.

In a bold recasting of the Adamses' historical roles, The Problem of Democracy is a major critique of the ways in which their prophetic warnings have been systematically ignored over the centuries. It's also an intimate family drama that brings out the torment and personal hurt caused by the gritty conduct of early American politics. Burstein and Isenberg make sense of the presidents' somewhat iconoclastic, highly creative engagement with America's political and social realities. By taking the temperature of American democracy, from its heated origins through multiple upheavals, the authors reveal the dangers and weaknesses that have been present since the beginning. They provide a clear-eyed look at a decoy democracy that masks the reality of elite rule while remaining open, since the days of George Washington, to a very undemocratic result in the formation of a cult surrounding the person of an elected leader.