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History Wars

by Edward T. Linethal & Tom Engelhardt

From the "taming of the West" to the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, the portrayal of the past has become a battleground at the heart of American politics. What kind of history Americans should read,...


The Authentic Animal

by Dave Madden

Why would someone want to create or own the mounted skin of a dead animal? That's the question Dave Madden explores in The Authentic Animal. Madden starts his journey with the life story of Carl Akeley, the...


American Nightmare

by Jerrold M. Packard

For a hundred years after the end of the Civil War, a quarter of all Americans lived under a system of legalized segregation called Jim Crow. Together with its rigidly enforced canon of racial "etiquette," these...


Red Summer

by Cameron McWhirter

A narrative history of America's deadliest episode of race riots and lynchings

After World War I, black Americans fervently hoped for a new epoch of peace, prosperity, and equality. Black soldiers believed their...


The Dead Travel Fast

by Eric Nuzum

The undead are everywhere. They're not just in movies and books, but in commercials, fetish clubs, and even in your breakfast cereal. Bloodsuckers have become some of the most recognizable bad guys in the modern...


When the Rivers Ran Red

by Vivienne Sosnowski

Today, millions of people around the world enjoy California's legendary wines, unaware that 90 years ago the families who made these wines--and in many cases still do - turned to struggle and subterfuge to save...


Hoboes

by Mark Wyman

When the railroad stretched its steel rails across the American West in the 1870s, it opened up a vast expanse of territory with very few people but enormous agricultural potential: a second Western frontier,...


My Life with Che

by Hilda Gadea

Che Guevara's first wife, Hilda Gadea, paints a personal portrait of the legendary figure, revealing his lesser known side as a romantic wanderer, a philosopher and doting suitor and father. Ernesto Guevara...


In Defense of Thomas Jefferson

by William G. Hyland, Jr.

The belief that Thomas Jefferson had an affair and fathered a child (or children) with slave Sally Hemings---and that such an allegation was proven by DNA testing--has become so pervasive in American popular...


The New American Judaism

by Rabbi Dr. Arthur Blecher

Popular Washington, D.C. rabbi and psychotherapist Arthur Blecher believes that the American Jewish community is actually flourishing amidst fears of dying out. He shows us that intermarriage strengthens Judaism--a...


Time

by Eva Hoffman

Novelist, cultural commentator, memoirist, and historian Eva Hoffman examines our ever-changing perception of time in this inspired addition to the BIG IDEAS/small books series

Time has always been the great...


A Voyage Long and Strange

by Tony Horwitz

The bestselling author of Blue Latitudes takes us on a thrilling and eye-opening voyage to pre-Mayflower America

On a chance visit to Plymouth Rock, Tony Horwitz realizes he's mislaid more than a century of American...


Selling the Great War

by Alan Axelrod

Selling the Great War is the story of maverick journalist George Creel and the epoch-making government agency he built and led using the emerging industries of mass advertising and public relations to convince...


The Devil of Great Island

by Emerson W. Baker

In 1682, ten years before the infamous Salem witch trials, the town of Great Island, New Hampshire, was plagued by mysterious events: strange, demonic noises; unexplainable movement of objects; and hundreds...


The Shadows of Youth

by Andrew B. Lewis

Through the lives of Diane Nash, Stokely Carmichael, Bob Moses, Bob Zellner, Julian Bond, Marion Barry, John Lewis, and their contemporaries, The Shadows of Youth provides a carefully woven group biography of...


Greatest Emancipations

by Jim Powell

For thousands of years, slavery went unchallenged in principle. Then in a single century, slavery was abolished and more than seven million slaves were freed. Greatest Emancipation tells this amazing story,...


Doing Nothing

by Tom Lutz

From the author of Crying, a witty, wide-ranging cultural history of our attitudes toward work--and getting out of it

Couch potatoes, goof-offs, freeloaders, good-for-nothings, loafers, and loungers: ever since...


Paris Under Water

by Jeffrey H. Jackson

In the winter of 1910, the river that brought life to Paris quickly became a force of destruction. Torrential rainfall saturated the soil, and faulty engineering created a perfect storm of conditions that soon...


To the End of the Earth

by Tom Avery

April 2009 is the one-hundredth anniversary of perhaps the greatest controversy in the history of exploration. Did U.S. Naval Commander Robert Peary and his team dogsled to the North Pole in thirty-seven days...


White Gold

by Giles Milton

The true story of white European slaves in eighteenth century Algiers, Tunis, and Morocco

In the summer of 1716, a Cornish cabin boy named Thomas Pellow and fifty-one of his comrades were captured at sea by the...