List books in category History / Modern

  • Young Castro: The Making of a Revolutionary

    Young Castro: The Making of a Revolutionary
    Jonathan M. Hansen

    An intimate, revisionist portrait of the early years of Fidel Castro, showing how an unlikely young Cuban led his country in revolution and transfixed the world.This book will change how you think about Fidel Castro. Until now, biographers have treated Castro’s life like prosecutors, scouring his past for evidence to convict a person they don’t like or don’t understand. This can make for bad history and unsatisfying biography. Young Castro challenges readers to put aside the caricature of a bearded, cigar-munching, anti-American hot head to discover how Castro became the dictator who acted as a thorn in the side of US presidents for nearly half a century. These pages show Fidel Castro getting his toughness from a father who survived Spain’s nasty class system and colonial wars to become one of the most successful independent plantation owners in Cuba. They show a boy running around that plantation more comfortable playing with the children of his father’s laborers than his tony classmates at elite boarding schools in Santiago de Cuba and Havana. They show a young man who writes flowery love letters from prison and contemplates the meaning of life, a gregarious soul attentive to the needs of strangers but often indifferent to the needs of his own family. These pages show a liberal democrat who admires FDR’s New Deal policies and is skeptical of communism, but is also hostile to American imperialism. They show an audacious militant who stages a reckless attack on a military barracks but is canny about building an army of resisters. In short, Young Castro reveals a complex man. The first American historian in a generation to gain access to the Castro archives in Havana, Jonathan Hansen was able to secure cooperation from Castro’s family and closest confidants, gaining access to hundreds of never-before-seen letters and to interviews with people he was the first to ask for their impressions of the man. The result is a nuanced and penetrating portrait of a figure who was determined to be a leader—a man at once brilliant, arrogant, bold, vulnerable and all too human. A man who, having grown up on an island that felt like a colonial cage, was compelled to lead his country to independence.

  • Military Transition in Early Modern Asia, 1400-1750: Cavalry, Guns, Government and Ships

    Military Transition in Early Modern Asia, 1400-1750: Cavalry, Guns, Government and Ships
    Kaushik Roy

    A substantial amount of work has been carried out to explore the military systems of Western Europe during the early modern era, but the military trajectories of the Asian states have received relatively little attention. This study provides the first comparative study of the major Asian empires' military systems and explores the extent of the impact of West European military transition on the extra-European world. Kaushik Roy conducts a comparative analysis of the armies and navies of the large agrarian bureaucratic empires of Asia, focusing on the question of how far the Asian polities were able to integrate gunpowder weapons in their military systems. Military Transition in Early Modern Asia, 1400-1750 offers important insights into the common patterns in war making across the region, and the impact of firearms and artillery.

  • Bloody Ridge and Beyond: A World War II Marine s Memoir of Edson s Raiders in the Pacific

    Bloody Ridge and Beyond: A World War II Marine’s Memoir of Edson’s Raiders in the Pacific
    Marlin Groft

    By a veteran of Lt. Col. Merritt A. Edson's battalion, and author of the Dick Winters biography Biggest Brother and coauthor of A Higher CallOn the killing ground that was the island of Guadalcanal, a 2,000-yard-long ridge rose from the jungle canopy. Behind it lay the all-important air base of Henderson Field. And if Henderson Field fell, it would mean the almost certain death or capture of all 12,500 marines on the island . . .But the marines positioned on the ridge were no normal fighters. They were tough, hard-fighting men of the Edson’s Raiders; an elite fighting unit within an already elite U.S. Marine Corps. Handpicked for their toughness, and submitted to a rigorous training program to weed out those less fit, they were the Marine Corps’s best of the best.For two hellish nights in September 1942, about 840 United States Marines—commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Merritt Austin “Red Mike” Edson—fought one of the most pivotal battles of World War II in the Pacific, clinging desperately to their position on what would soon be known as Bloody Ridge.Wave after wave of attacking Japanese soldiers were repelled by the Raiders, who knew that defeat and retreat were simply not possible options. But in the end, the defenders had prevailed against the odds.Bloody Ridge and Beyond is the story of the 1st Marine Raider Battalion, which showed courage and valor in the face of overwhelming numbers, as told by Marlin Groft, a man who was a member of this incredible fighting force.

  • Smuggler s End: The Life and Death of Barry Seal

    Smuggler’s End: The Life and Death of Barry Seal
    Del Hahn

    The truth behind the CIA/Mena Conspiracy!Notorious Louisiana drug smuggler Barry Seal made countless runs from Central America to the United States, flying thousands of pounds of cocaine and marijuana into the country and making millions of dollars. When faced with criminal prosecution, Seal turned snitch for the DEA, but he continued to smuggle drugs into the US. In the 1980s, it was leaked under the Reagan administration that Seal was an undercover CIA operative working with the US government to aid Nicaragua in its fight against the Sandinistas. Seal's role in the conspiracy is large, and many FBI, CIA, DEA, and government officials are implicated in this exposé. Author Del Hahn reveals the true story of this infamous figure.

  • 21 Lessons for the 21st Century

    21 Lessons for the 21st Century
    Yuval Noah Harari

    #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • In Sapiens, he explored our past. In Homo Deus, he looked to our future. Now, one of the most innovative thinkers on the planet turns to the present to make sense of today’s most pressing issues.“Fascinating . . . a crucial global conversation about how to take on the problems of the twenty-first century.”—Bill Gates, The New York Times Book ReviewNAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY FINANCIAL TIMES AND PAMELA PAUL, KQED How do computers and robots change the meaning of being human? How do we deal with the epidemic of fake news? Are nations and religions still relevant? What should we teach our children? Yuval Noah Harari’s 21 Lessons for the 21st Century is a probing and visionary investigation into today’s most urgent issues as we move into the uncharted territory of the future. As technology advances faster than our understanding of it, hacking becomes a tactic of war, and the world feels more polarized than ever, Harari addresses the challenge of navigating life in the face of constant and disorienting change and raises the important questions we need to ask ourselves in order to survive. In twenty-one accessible chapters that are both provocative and profound, Harari builds on the ideas explored in his previous books, untangling political, technological, social, and existential issues and offering advice on how to prepare for a very different future from the world we now live in: How can we retain freedom of choice when Big Data is watching us? What will the future workforce look like, and how should we ready ourselves for it? How should we deal with the threat of terrorism? Why is liberal democracy in crisis? Harari’s unique ability to make sense of where we have come from and where we are going has captured the imaginations of millions of readers. Here he invites us to consider values, meaning, and personal engagement in a world full of noise and uncertainty. When we are deluged with irrelevant information, clarity is power. Presenting complex contemporary challenges clearly and accessibly, 21 Lessons for the 21st Century is essential reading.“If there were such a thing as a required instruction manual for politicians and thought leaders, Israeli historian Yuval Noah Harari’s 21 Lessons for the 21st Century would deserve serious consideration. In this collection of provocative essays, Harari . . . tackles a daunting array of issues, endeavoring to answer a persistent question: ‘What is happening in the world today, and what is the deep meaning of these events?’”—BookPage (top pick)

  • Parish Churches in the Early Modern World

    Parish Churches in the Early Modern World
    Andrew Spicer

    Across Europe, the parish church has stood for centuries at the centre of local communities; it was the focal point of its religious life, the rituals performed there marked the stages of life from the cradle to the grave. Nonetheless the church itself artistically and architecturally stood apart from the parish community. It was often the largest and only stone-built building in a village; it was legally distinct being subject to canon law, as well as consecrated for the celebration of religious rites. The buildings associated with the "cure of souls" were sacred sites or holy places, where humanity interacted with the divine. In spite of the importance of the parish church, these buildings have generally not received the same attention from historians as non-parochial places of worship. This collection of essays redresses this balance and reflects on the parish church across a number of confessions – Catholic, Lutheran, Reformed and Anti-Trinitarian – during the early modern period. Rather than providing a series of case studies of individual buildings, each essay looks at the evolution of parish churches in response to religious reform as well as confessional change and upheaval. They examine aspects of their design and construction; furnishings and material culture; liturgy and the use of the parish church. While these essays range widely across Europe, the volume also considers how religious provision and the parish church were translated into a global context with colonial and commercial expansion in the Americas and Asia. This interdisciplinary volume seeks to identify what was distinctive about the parish church for the congregations that gathered in them for worship and for communities across the early modern world.

  • Ending the Vietnam War: A History of America s Involvement in and Extrication from the Vietnam War

    Ending the Vietnam War: A History of America’s Involvement in and Extrication from the Vietnam War
    Henry Kissinger

    The Definitive Account Many other authors have written about what they thought happened — or thought should have happened — in Vietnam, but it was Henry Kissinger who was there at the epicenter, involved in every decision from the long, frustrating negotiations with the North Vietnamese delegation to America's eventual extrication from the war. Now, for the first time, Kissinger gives us in a single volume an in-depth, inside view of the Vietnam War, personally collected, annotated, revised, and updated from his bestselling memoirs and his book Diplomacy. Here, Kissinger writes with firm, precise knowledge, supported by meticulous documentation that includes his own memoranda to and replies from President Nixon. He tells about the tragedy of Cambodia, the collateral negotiations with the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China, the disagreements within the Nixon and Ford administrations, the details of all negotiations in which he was involved, the domestic unrest and protest in the States, and the day-to-day military to diplomatic realities of the war as it reached the White House. As compelling and exciting as Barbara Tuchman's The Guns of August, Ending the Vietnam War also reveals insights about the bigger-than-life personalities — Johnson, Nixon, de Gaulle, Ho Chi Minh, Brezhnev — who were caught up in a war that forever changed international relations. This is history on a grand scale, and a book of overwhelming importance to the public record.

  • The Global Cold War: Third World Interventions and the Making of Our Times

    The Global Cold War: Third World Interventions and the Making of Our Times
    Odd Arne Westad

    The Cold War shaped the world we live in today – its politics, economics, and military affairs. This book shows how the globalization of the Cold War during the last century created the foundations for most of the key conflicts we see today, including the War on Terror. It focuses on how the Third World policies of the two twentieth-century superpowers – the United States and the Soviet Union – gave rise to resentments and resistance that in the end helped topple one superpower and still seriously challenge the other. Ranging from China to Indonesia, Iran, Ethiopia, Angola, Cuba, and Nicaragua, it provides a truly global perspective on the Cold War. And by exploring both the development of interventionist ideologies and the revolutionary movements that confronted interventions, the book links the past with the present in ways that no other major work on the Cold War era has succeeded in doing.

  • The Volunteer: One Man, an Underground Army, and the Secret Mission to Destroy Auschwitz

    The Volunteer: One Man, an Underground Army, and the Secret Mission to Destroy Auschwitz
    Jack Fairweather

    “Superbly written and breathtakingly researched, The Volunteer smuggles us into Auschwitz and shows us—as if watching a movie—the story of a Polish agent who infiltrated the infamous camp, organized a rebellion, and then snuck back out. We are squarely confronted with the other human truth: ordinary people will happily risk their lives to help others. Fairweather has dug up a story of incalculable value and delivered it to us in the most compelling prose I have read in a long time.” —Sebastian Junger, bestselling author of The Perfect Storm and TribeThe incredible true story of a Polish resistance fighter’s infiltration of Auschwitz to sabotage the camp from within, and his death-defying attempt to warn the Allies about the Nazis’ plans for a “Final Solution” before it was too late.To uncover the fate of the thousands being interred at a mysterious Nazi camp on the border of the Reich, a thirty-nine-year-old Polish resistance fighter named Witold Pilecki volunteered for an audacious mission: assume a fake identity, intentionally get captured and sent to the new camp, and then report back to the underground on what had happened to his compatriots there. But gathering information was not his only task: he was to execute an attack from inside—where the Germans would least expect it. The name of the camp was Auschwitz.Over the next two and half years, Pilecki forged an underground army within Auschwitz that sabotaged facilities, assassinated Nazi informants and officers, and gathered evidence of terrifying abuse and mass murder. But as he pieced together the horrifying truth that the camp was to become the epicenter of Nazi plans to exterminate Europe’s Jews, Pilecki realized he would have to risk his men, his life, and his family to warn the West before all was lost. To do so, meant attempting the impossible—an escape from Auschwitz itself.Completely erased from the historical record by Poland’s post-war Communist government, Pilecki remains almost unknown to the world. Now, with exclusive access to previously hidden diaries, family and camp survivor accounts, and recently declassified files, Jack Fairweather offers an unflinching portrayal of survival, revenge and betrayal in mankind’s darkest hour. And in uncovering the tragic outcome of Pilecki’s mission, he reveals that its ultimate defeat originated not in Auschwitz or Berlin, but in London and Washington.

  • Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World s Greatest Nuclear Disaster

    Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World’s Greatest Nuclear Disaster
    Adam Higginbotham

    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER Journalist Adam Higginbotham’s definitive, years-in-the-making account of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster—and a powerful investigation into how propaganda, secrecy, and myth have obscured the true story of one of the twentieth century’s greatest disasters.Early in the morning of April , 1986, Reactor Number Four of the Chernobyl Atomic Energy Station exploded, triggering history’s worst nuclear disaster. In the thirty years since then, Chernobyl has become lodged in the collective nightmares of the world: shorthand for the spectral horrors of radiation poisoning, for a dangerous technology slipping its leash, for ecological fragility, and for what can happen when a dishonest and careless state endangers its citizens and the entire world. But the real story of the accident, clouded from the beginning by secrecy, propaganda, and misinformation, has long remained in dispute. Drawing on hundreds of hours of interviews conducted over the course of more than ten years, as well as letters, unpublished memoirs, and documents from recently-declassified archives, Adam Higginbotham has written a harrowing and compelling narrative which brings the disaster to life through the eyes of the men and women who witnessed it firsthand. The result is a masterful nonfiction thriller, and the definitive account of an event that changed history: a story that is more complex, more human, and more terrifying than the Soviet myth. Midnight in Chernobyl is an indelible portrait of one of the great disasters of the twentieth century, of human resilience and ingenuity, and the lessons learned when mankind seeks to bend the natural world to his will—lessons which, in the face of climate change and other threats, remain not just vital but necessary.

  • American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History

    American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History
    Chris Kyle

    The #1 New York Times bestselling memoir of U.S. Navy Seal Chris Kyle, and the source for Clint Eastwood’s blockbuster movie which was nominated for six academy awards, including best picture.From 1999 to 2009, U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle recorded the most career sniper kills in United States military history. His fellow American warriors, whom he protected with deadly precision from rooftops and stealth positions during the Iraq War, called him “The Legend”; meanwhile, the enemy feared him so much they named him al-Shaitan (“the devil”) and placed a bounty on his head. Kyle, who was tragically killed in 2013, writes honestly about the pain of war—including the deaths of two close SEAL teammates—and in moving first-person passages throughout, his wife, Taya, speaks openly about the strains of war on their family, as well as on Chris. Gripping and unforgettable, Kyle’s masterful account of his extraordinary battlefield experiences ranks as one of the great war memoirs of all time.

  • Franciscan Spirituality and Mission in New Spain, 1524-1599: Conflict Beneath the Sycamore Tree (Luke 19:1-10)

    Franciscan Spirituality and Mission in New Spain, 1524-1599: Conflict Beneath the Sycamore Tree (Luke 19:1-10)
    Steven E. Turley

    Franciscans in sixteenth-century New Spain were deeply ambivalent about their mission work. Fray Juan de Zumárraga, the first archbishop of Mexico, begged the king to find someone else to do his job so that he could go home. Fray Juan de Ribas, one of the original twelve 'apostles of Mexico' and a founding pillar of the church in New Spain, later fled with eleven other friars into the wilderness to escape the demands of building that church. Fray Jerónimo de Mendieta, having returned from an important preaching tour in New Spain, wrote to his superior that he did not want to enlist again, and that the only way he would return to the mission field was if God dragged him by the hair. This discontent was widespread, grew stronger with time, and carried important consequences for the friars' interactions with indigenous peoples, their Catholic co-laborers, and colonial society at large. This book examines that discontent and seeks to explain why the exhilaration of joining such a 'glorious' enterprise so often gave way to grinding discontent. The core argument is that, despite St. Francis's own longing to do mission work, his followers in New Spain found that effective evangelization in a frontier context was fundamentally incompatible with their core spirituality. Bringing together two streams of historiography that have rarely overlapped – spirituality and missions – this book marks a strong contribution to the history of spirituality in both Latin America and Europe, as well as to the growing fields of transatlantic and world history.

  • Global Electrification: Multinational Enterprise and International Finance in the History of Light and Power, 1878–2007

    Global Electrification: Multinational Enterprise and International Finance in the History of Light and Power, 1878–2007
    William J. Hausman

    This book examines how multinational enterprises and international finance influenced the course of electrification around the world. Multinational enterprises played a crucial role in the spread of electric light and power from the 1870s through the first three decades of the twentieth century. However, their role did not persist, and by 1978 multinational enterprises in this sector had all but disappeared, replaced by electrical utility providers with national business structures. Yet, in recent years, there has been a vigorous revival. This book, a co-operative effort by the three authors and a group of experts from many countries, offers an analysis of the history of multinational enterprise. The authors take an integrated approach, not simply comparing national electrification experiences, but supplying a truly global account.

  • The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors: The Extraordinary World War II Story of the U.S. Navy s Finest Hour

    The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors: The Extraordinary World War II Story of the U.S. Navy’s Finest Hour
    James D. Hornfischer

    “This will be a fight against overwhelming odds from which survival cannot be expected. We will do what damage we can.” With these words, Lieutenant Commander Robert W. Copeland addressed the crew of the destroyer escort USS Samuel B. Roberts on the morning of October 25, 1944, off the Philippine Island of Samar. On the horizon loomed the mightiest ships of the Japanese navy, a massive fleet that represented the last hope of a staggering empire. All that stood between it and Douglas MacArthur’ s vulnerable invasion force were the Roberts and the other small ships of a tiny American flotilla poised to charge into history. In the tradition of the #1 New York Times bestseller Flags of Our Fathers, James D. Hornfischer paints an unprecedented portrait of the Battle of Samar, a naval engagement unlike any other in U.S. history—and captures with unforgettable intensity the men, the strategies, and the sacrifices that turned certain defeat into a legendary victory. BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from James D. Hornfischer's Neptune's Inferno.Praise for The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors“One of the finest WWII naval action narratives in recent years, this book follows in the footsteps of Flags of Our Fathers. . . . Exalting American sailors and pilots as they richly deserve. . . . Reads like a very good action novel.”—Publishers Weekly“Reads as fresh as tomorrow's headlines. . . . Hornfischer's captivating narrative uses previously classified documents to reconstruct the epic battle and eyewitness accounts to bring the officers and sailors to life.”—Texas Monthly“Hornfischer is a powerful stylist whose explanations are clear as well as memorable. . . . A dire survival-at-sea saga.”—Denver Post“In The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors, James Hornfischer drops you right into the middle of this raging battle, with 5-inch guns blazing, torpedoes detonating and Navy fliers dive-bombing. . . . The overall story of the battle is one of American guts, glory and heroic sacrifice.”—Omaha World Herald

  • D-Day: The Battle for Normandy

    D-Day: The Battle for Normandy
    Antony Beevor

    "Glorious, horrifying…D-Day is a vibrant work of history that honors the sacrifice of tens of thousands of men and women."—TimeBeevor's Ardennes 1944: The Battle of the Bulge is now available from Viking Books Renowned historian Antony Beevor, the man who "single-handedly transformed the reputation of military history" (The Guardian) presents the first major account in more than twenty years of the Normandy invasion and the liberation of Paris. This is the first book to describe not only the experiences of the American, British, Canadian, and German soldiers, but also the terrible suffering of the French caught up in the fighting. Beevor draws upon his research in more than thirty archives in six countries, going back to original accounts and interviews conducted by combat historians just after the action. D-Day is the consummate account of the invasion and the ferocious offensive that led to Paris's liberation.

  • The Story of the Titanic As Told by Its Survivors

    The Story of the Titanic As Told by Its Survivors
    Jack Winocour

    Why does the sinking of the Titanic hold such fascination for us? Many reasons have been advanced for the continuing fascination of this epic tragedy, but none, we think, can contribute as much to an understanding of it as the four accounts collected in this volume.All four authors were survivors, and each presents the catastrophe from his own viewpoint; the icy waters, the cries of the drowning, the confusion, and the heroism, are given an intensely personal immediacy.This volume contains, complete and unabridged, "The Loss of the S.S. Titanic," by Lawrence Beesley, and "The Truth about the Titanic," by Col. Archibald Gracie. Both are full-length books published soon after the disaster. Each has become extremely rare today. The third story in this volume, "Titanic," was written by one of the only officers to survive the catastrophe, Commander Lightoller. It includes the story of the "white-washing" inquiries into the Titanic's safety measures. The last section is a dramatic tale by the Titanic's surviving wireless operator, Harold Bride.

  • The Rape Of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust Of World War II

    The Rape Of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust Of World War II
    Iris Chang

    The New York Times bestselling account of one of history's most brutal — and forgotten — massacres, when the Japanese army destroyed China's capital city on the eve of World War II In December 1937, one of the most horrific atrocities in the long annals of wartime barbarity occurred. The Japanese army swept into the ancient city of Nanking (what was then the capital of China), and within weeks, more than 300,000 Chinese civilians and soldiers were systematically raped, tortured, and murdered. In this seminal work, Iris Chang, whose own grandparents barely escaped the massacre, tells this history from three perspectives: that of the Japanese soldiers, that of the Chinese, and that of a group of Westerners who refused to abandon the city and created a safety zone, which saved almost 300,000 Chinese. Drawing on extensive interviews with survivors and documents brought to light for the first time, Iris Chang's classic book is the definitive history of this horrifying episode. "Chang vividly, methodically, records what happened, piecing together the abundant eyewitness reports into an undeniable tapestry of horror." – Adam Hochschild, Salon !–[if !supportAnnotations]– !–[if !supportAnnotations]– !–[endif]–

  • The Pursuit of Power: Europe 1815-1914

    The Pursuit of Power: Europe 1815-1914
    Richard J. Evans

    An Economist Best Book of the Year“Sweeping . . . an ambitious synthesis . . . [Evans] writes with admirable narrative power and possesses a wonderful eye for local color . . . Fascinating.”—Stephen Schuker, The Wall Street JournalFrom the bestselling author of The Third Reich at War, a masterly account of Europe in the age of its global hegemony; the latest volume in the Penguin History of Europe series Richard J. Evans, bestselling historian of Nazi Germany, returns with a monumental new addition to the acclaimed Penguin History of Europe series, covering the period from the fall of Napoleon to the outbreak of World War I. Evans’s gripping narrative ranges across a century of social and national conflicts, from the revolutions of 1830 and 1848 to the unification of both Germany and Italy, from the Russo-Turkish wars to the Balkan upheavals that brought this era of relative peace and growing prosperity to an end. Among the great themes it discusses are the decline of religious belief and the rise of secular science and medicine, the journey of art, music, and literature from Romanticism to Modernism, the replacement of old-regime punishments by the modern prison, the end of aristocratic domination and the emergence of industrial society, and the dramatic struggle of feminists for women’s equality and emancipation. Uniting the era’s broad-ranging transformations was the pursuit of power in all segments of life, from the banker striving for economic power to the serf seeking to escape the power of his landlord, from the engineer asserting society’s power over the environment to the psychiatrist attempting to exert science’s power over human nature itself. The first single-volume history of the century, this comprehensive and sweeping account gives the reader a magnificently human picture of Europe in the age when it dominated the rest of the globe.

  • White Identity Politics

    White Identity Politics
    Ashley Jardina

    Amidst discontent over America's growing diversity, many white Americans now view the political world through the lens of a racial identity. Whiteness was once thought to be invisible because of whites' dominant position and ability to claim the mainstream, but today a large portion of whites actively identify with their racial group and support policies and candidates that they view as protecting whites' power and status. In White Identity Politics, Ashley Jardina offers a landmark analysis of emerging patterns of white identity and collective political behavior, drawing on sweeping data. Where past research on whites' racial attitudes emphasized out-group hostility, Jardina brings into focus the significance of in-group identity and favoritism. White Identity Politics shows that disaffected whites are not just found among the working class; they make up a broad proportion of the American public – with profound implications for political behavior and the future of racial conflict in America.

  • Bandido: The Life and Times of Tiburcio Vasquez

    Bandido: The Life and Times of Tiburcio Vasquez
    John Boessenecker

    Tiburcio Vasquez is, next to Joaquin Murrieta, America's most infamous Hispanic bandit. After he was hanged as a murderer in 1875, the Chicago Tribune called him "the most noted desperado of modern times." Yet questions about him still linger. Why did he become a bandido? Why did so many Hispanics protect him and his band? Was he a common thief and heartless killer who got what he deserved, or was he a Mexican American Robin Hood who suffered at the hands of a racist government? In this engrossing biography, John Boessenecker provides definitive answers.Bandido pulls back the curtain on a life story shrouded in myth — a myth created by Vasquez himself and abetted by writers who saw a tale ripe for embellishment. Boessenecker traces his subject's life from his childhood in the seaside adobe village of Monterey, to his years as a young outlaw engaged in horse rustling and robbery. Two terms in San Quentin failed to tame Vasquez, and he instigated four bloody prison breaks that left twenty convicts dead. After his final release from prison, he led bandit raids throughout Central and Southern California. His dalliances with women were legion, and the last one led to his capture in the Hollywood Hills and his death on the gallows at the age of thirty-nine.From dusty court records, forgotten memoirs, and moldering newspaper archives, Boessenecker draws a story of violence, banditry, and retribution on the early California frontier that is as accurate as it is colorful. Enhanced by numerous photographs — many published here for the first time — Bandido also addresses important issues of racism and social justice that remain relevant to this day.

  • Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe: A History from the French Revolution to the Present Day

    Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe: A History from the French Revolution to the Present Day
    Annette F. Timm

    Through a blend of history and historiography, Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe provides a clear and concise introduction to gender history in the region. The detailed examples and engaging language make this a useful overview for students not only of gender history, but also of European history more widely, as considerations of gender illuminate our understanding of historical change and individual experience. In six thematic chapters that cover democracy and capitalism, imperialism and war, the authors explain how gender roles were socially constructed and how they influenced political and economic developments during the period. This new edition has been thoroughly re-edited and expanded to take account of ongoing methodological innovation and recent scholarship in the field. The book also includes a brand new chapter on sexuality in the 21st century and extended material on: · Scandinavia · The Mediterranean · Alternative Sexualities · Women's history and femininity Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe is a key text for all students of gender history and the history of modern Europe in general.

  • Island of the Lost: An Extraordinary Story of Survival at the Edge of the World

    Island of the Lost: An Extraordinary Story of Survival at the Edge of the World
    Joan Druett

    “Riveting.” —The New York Times Book Review Hundreds of miles from civilization, two ships wreck on opposite ends of the same deserted island in this true story of human nature at its best—and at its worst. It is 1864, and Captain Thomas Musgrave’s schooner, the Grafton, has just wrecked on Auckland Island, a forbidding piece of land 285 miles south of New Zealand. Battered by year-round freezing rain and constant winds, it is one of the most inhospitable places on earth. To be shipwrecked there means almost certain death. Incredibly, at the same time on the opposite end of the island, another ship runs aground during a storm. Separated by only twenty miles and the island’s treacherous, impassable cliffs, the crews of the Grafton and the Invercauld face the same fate. And yet where the Invercauld’s crew turns inward on itself, fighting, starving, and even turning to cannibalism, Musgrave’s crew bands together to build a cabin and a forge—and eventually, to find a way to escape. Using the survivors’ journals and historical records, award-winning maritime historian Joan Druett brings to life this extraordinary untold story about leadership and the fine line between order and chaos.

  • Reconstructing the National Bank Controversy: Politics and Law in the Early American Republic

    Reconstructing the National Bank Controversy: Politics and Law in the Early American Republic
    Eric Lomazoff

    The Bank of the United States sparked several rounds of intense debate over the meaning of the Constitution’s Necessary and Proper Clause, which authorizes the federal government to make laws that are “necessary” for exercising its other powers. Our standard account of the national bank controversy, however, is incomplete. The controversy was much more dynamic than a two-sided debate over a single constitutional provision and was shaped as much by politics as by law. With Reconstructing the National Bank Controversy, Eric Lomazoff offers a far more robust account of the constitutional politics of national banking between 1791 and 1832. During that time, three forces—changes within the Bank itself, growing tension over federal power within the Republican coalition, and the endurance of monetary turmoil beyond the War of 1812 —drove the development of our first major debate over the scope of federal power at least as much as the formal dimensions of the Constitution or the absence of a shared legal definition for the word “necessary.” These three forces—sometimes alone, sometimes in combination—repeatedly reshaped the terms on which the Bank’s constitutionality was contested. Lomazoff documents how these three dimensions of the polity changed over time and traces the manner in which they periodically led federal officials to adjust their claims about the Bank’s constitutionality. This includes the emergence of the Coinage Clause—which gives Congress power to “coin money, regulate the value thereof”—as a novel justification for the institution. He concludes the book by explaining why a more robust account of the national bank controversy can help us understand the constitutional basis for modern American monetary politics.

  • These Truths: A History of the United States

    These Truths: A History of the United States
    Jill Lepore

    New York Times Bestseller In the most ambitious one-volume American history in decades, award-winning historian and New Yorker writer Jill Lepore offers a magisterial account of the origins and rise of a divided nation, an urgently needed reckoning with the beauty and tragedy of American history. Written in elegiac prose, Lepore’s groundbreaking investigation places truth itself—a devotion to facts, proof, and evidence—at the center of the nation’s history. The American experiment rests on three ideas—"these truths," Jefferson called them—political equality, natural rights, and the sovereignty of the people. And it rests, too, on a fearless dedication to inquiry, Lepore argues, because self-government depends on it. But has the nation, and democracy itself, delivered on that promise? These Truths tells this uniquely American story, beginning in 1492, asking whether the course of events over more than five centuries has proven the nation’s truths, or belied them. To answer that question, Lepore traces the intertwined histories of American politics, law, journalism, and technology, from the colonial town meeting to the nineteenth-century party machine, from talk radio to twenty-first-century Internet polls, from Magna Carta to the Patriot Act, from the printing press to Facebook News. Along the way, Lepore’s sovereign chronicle is filled with arresting sketches of both well-known and lesser-known Americans, from a parade of presidents and a rogues’ gallery of political mischief makers to the intrepid leaders of protest movements, including Frederick Douglass, the famed abolitionist orator; William Jennings Bryan, the three-time presidential candidate and ultimately tragic populist; Pauli Murray, the visionary civil rights strategist; and Phyllis Schlafly, the uncredited architect of modern conservatism. Americans are descended from slaves and slave owners, from conquerors and the conquered, from immigrants and from people who have fought to end immigration. "A nation born in contradiction will fight forever over the meaning of its history," Lepore writes, but engaging in that struggle by studying the past is part of the work of citizenship. "The past is an inheritance, a gift and a burden," These Truths observes. "It can’t be shirked. There’s nothing for it but to get to know it."

  • The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties

    The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties
    Paul Collier

    Bill Gates's Five Books for Summer Reading 2019From world-renowned economist Paul Collier, a candid diagnosis of the failures of capitalism and a pragmatic and realistic vision for how we can repair it.Deep new rifts are tearing apart the fabric of the United States and other Western societies: thriving cities versus rural counties, the highly skilled elite versus the less educated, wealthy versus developing countries. As these divides deepen, we have lost the sense of ethical obligation to others that was crucial to the rise of post-war social democracy. So far these rifts have been answered only by the revivalist ideologies of populism and socialism, leading to the seismic upheavals of Trump, Brexit, and the return of the far-right in Germany. We have heard many critiques of capitalism but no one has laid out a realistic way to fix it, until now.In a passionate and polemical book, celebrated economist Paul Collier outlines brilliantly original and ethical ways of healing these rifts—economic, social and cultural—with the cool head of pragmatism, rather than the fervor of ideological revivalism. He reveals how he has personally lived across these three divides, moving from working-class Sheffield to hyper-competitive Oxford, and working between Britain and Africa, and acknowledges some of the failings of his profession.Drawing on his own solutions as well as ideas from some of the world’s most distinguished social scientists, he shows us how to save capitalism from itself—and free ourselves from the intellectual baggage of the twentieth century.

  • In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler s Berlin

    In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin
    Erik Larson

    Erik Larson, New York Times bestselling author of Devil in the White City, delivers a remarkable story set during Hitler’s rise to power.The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America’s first ambassador to Hitler’s Nazi Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history. A mild-mannered professor from Chicago, Dodd brings along his wife, son, and flamboyant daughter, Martha. At first Martha is entranced by the parties and pomp, and the handsome young men of the Third Reich with their infectious enthusiasm for restoring Germany to a position of world prominence. Enamored of the “New Germany,” she has one affair after another, including with the suprisingly honorable first chief of the Gestapo, Rudolf Diels. But as evidence of Jewish persecution mounts, confirmed by chilling first-person testimony, her father telegraphs his concerns to a largely indifferent State Department back home. Dodd watches with alarm as Jews are attacked, the press is censored, and drafts of frightening new laws begin to circulate. As that first year unfolds and the shadows deepen, the Dodds experience days full of excitement, intrigue, romance—and ultimately, horror, when a climactic spasm of violence and murder reveals Hitler’s true character and ruthless ambition. Suffused with the tense atmosphere of the period, and with unforgettable portraits of the bizarre Göring and the expectedly charming–yet wholly sinister–Goebbels, In the Garden of Beasts lends a stunning, eyewitness perspective on events as they unfold in real time, revealing an era of surprising nuance and complexity. The result is a dazzling, addictively readable work that speaks volumes about why the world did not recognize the grave threat posed by Hitler until Berlin, and Europe, were awash in blood and terror.

  • The Singing Turk: Ottoman Power and Operatic Emotions on the European Stage from the Siege of Vienna to the Age of Napoleon

    The Singing Turk: Ottoman Power and Operatic Emotions on the European Stage from the Siege of Vienna to the Age of Napoleon
    Larry Wolff

    While European powers were at war with the Ottoman Empire for much of the eighteenth century, European opera houses were staging operas featuring singing sultans and pashas surrounded by their musical courts and harems. Mozart wrote The Abduction from the Seraglio. Rossini created a series of works, including The Italian Girl in Algiers. And these are only the best known of a vast repertory. This book explores how these representations of the Muslim Ottoman Empire, the great nemesis of Christian Europe, became so popular in the opera house and what they illustrate about European–Ottoman international relations. After Christian armies defeated the Ottomans at Vienna in 1683, the Turks no longer seemed as threatening. Europeans increasingly understood that Turkish issues were also European issues, and the political absolutism of the sultan in Istanbul was relevant for thinking about politics in Europe, from the reign of Louis XIV to the age of Napoleon. While Christian European composers and publics recognized that Muslim Turks were, to some degree, different from themselves, this difference was sometimes seen as a matter of exotic costume and setting. The singing Turks of the stage expressed strong political perspectives and human emotions that European audiences could recognize as their own.

  • Path of Life

    Path of Life
    graf Leo Tolstoy

    Path of Life was the last book written by Lev Tolstoy. Although the great nineteenth century Russian novelist is known in English-speaking countries for his major novels: War and Peace; Anna Karenina; and Resurrection. He is less known for his numerous religious writings, which present a challenging and original point of view. These works have been undervalued, as evidenced by the fact that Path of Life is translated here fully in English. The reader will notice that Tolstoy anticipated many of the ideas presented in contemporary books on spirituality, such as the observation that our thoughts determine our lives. Tolstoy began to write this book in 1910, the last year of his life, when he was 82 years old. Given that he began the book in January and completed it in October of the same year, one would think the writing went quickly; but it only seems that way. Tolstoy actually had been developing the themes presented in Path of Life for the last thirty years of his life. In Path of Life Tolstoy defines how to find continuous happiness in life and how to die without fear. In presenting his views, he cites his own ideas and includes many quotations from an eclectic collection of anci

  • Women, Writing, and Travel in the Eighteenth Century

    Women, Writing, and Travel in the Eighteenth Century
    Katrina O’Loughlin

    The eighteenth century witnessed the publication of an unprecedented number of voyages and travels, genuine and fictional. Within a genre distinguished by its diversity, curiosity, and experimental impulses, Katrina O'Loughlin investigates not just how women in the eighteenth century experienced travel, but also how travel writing facilitated their participation in literary and political culture. She canvases a range of accounts by intrepid women, including Lady Mary Wortley Montagu's Turkish Embassy Letters, Lady Craven's Journey through the Crimea to Constantinople, Eliza Justice's A Voyage to Russia, and Anna Maria Falconbridge's Narrative of Two Voyages to the River Sierra Leone. Moving from Ottoman courts to theatres of war, O'Loughlin shows how gender frames access to people and spaces outside Enlightenment and Romantic Britain, and how travel provides women with a powerful cultural form for re-imagining their place in the world.

  • Second World, Second Sex: Socialist Women s Activism and Global Solidarity during the Cold War

    Second World, Second Sex: Socialist Women’s Activism and Global Solidarity during the Cold War
    Kristen Ghodsee

    Women from the state socialist countries in Eastern Europe—what used to be called the Second World—once dominated women’s activism at the United Nations, but their contributions have been largely forgotten or deemed insignificant in comparison with those of Western feminists. In Second World, Second Sex Kristen Ghodsee rescues some of this lost history by tracing the activism of Eastern European and African women during the 1975 United Nations International Year of Women and the subsequent Decade for Women (1976-1985). Focusing on case studies of state socialist Bulgaria and nonaligned but socialist-leaning Zambia, Ghodsee examines the feminist networks that developed between the Second and Third Worlds and shows how alliances between socialist women challenged American women’s leadership of the global women’s movement. Drawing on interviews and archival research across three continents, Ghodsee argues that international ideological competition between capitalism and socialism profoundly shaped the world women inhabit today.

  • The Law of Blood: Thinking and Acting as a Nazi

    The Law of Blood: Thinking and Acting as a Nazi
    Johann Chapoutot

    The scale and the depth of Nazi brutality seem to defy understanding. What could drive people to fight, kill, and destroy with such ruthless ambition? Observers and historians have offered countless explanations since the 1930s. According to Johann Chapoutot, we need to understand better how the Nazis explained it themselves. We need a clearer view, in particular, of how they were steeped in and spread the idea that history gave them no choice: it was either kill or die. Chapoutot, one of France’s leading historians, spent years immersing himself in the texts and images that reflected and shaped the mental world of Nazi ideologues, and that the Nazis disseminated to the German public. The party had no official ur-text of ideology, values, and history. But a clear narrative emerges from the myriad works of intellectuals, apparatchiks, journalists, and movie-makers that Chapoutot explores. The story went like this: In the ancient world, the Nordic-German race lived in harmony with the laws of nature. But since Late Antiquity, corrupt foreign norms and values—Jewish values in particular—had alienated Germany from itself and from all that was natural. The time had come, under the Nazis, to return to the fundamental law of blood. Germany must fight, conquer, and procreate, or perish. History did not concern itself with right and wrong, only brute necessity. A remarkable work of scholarship and insight, The Law of Blood recreates the chilling ideas and outlook that would cost millions their lives.

  • Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman

    Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman
    Robert K. Massie

    “[A] tale of power, perseverance and passion . . . a great story in the hands of a master storyteller.”—The Wall Street Journal The Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Peter the Great, Nicholas and Alexandra, and The Romanovs returns with another masterpiece of narrative biography, the extraordinary story of an obscure German princess who became one of the most remarkable, powerful, and captivating women in history. Born into a minor noble family, Catherine transformed herself into empress of Russia by sheer determination. For thirty-four years, the government, foreign policy, cultural development, and welfare of the Russian people were in her hands. She dealt with domestic rebellion, foreign wars, and the tidal wave of political change and violence churned up by the French Revolution. Catherine’s family, friends, ministers, generals, lovers, and enemies—all are here, vividly brought to life. History offers few stories richer than that of Catherine the Great. In this book, an eternally fascinating woman is returned to life. “[A] compelling portrait not just of a Russian titan, but also of a flesh-and-blood woman.”—Newsweek “An absorbing, satisfying biography.”—Los Angeles Times “Juicy and suspenseful.”—The New York Times Book Review “A great life, indeed, and irresistibly told.”—Salon NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times • The Washington Post • USA Today • The Boston Globe • San Francisco Chronicle • Chicago Tribune • Newsweek/The Daily Beast • Salon • Vogue • St. Louis Post-Dispatch • The Providence Journal • Washington Examiner • South Florida Sun-Sentinel • BookPage • Bookreporter • Publishers Weekly BONUS: This edition contains a Catherine the Great reader's guide.

  • Einstein: His Life and Universe

    Einstein: His Life and Universe
    Walter Isaacson

    By the author of the acclaimed bestsellers Benjamin Franklin and Steve Jobs, this is the definitive biography of Albert Einstein. How did his mind work? What made him a genius? Isaacson’s biography shows how his scientific imagination sprang from the rebellious nature of his personality. His fascinating story is a testament to the connection between creativity and freedom. Based on newly released personal letters of Einstein, this book explores how an imaginative, impertinent patent clerk—a struggling father in a difficult marriage who couldn’t get a teaching job or a doctorate—became the mind reader of the creator of the cosmos, the locksmith of the mysteries of the atom, and the universe. His success came from questioning conventional wisdom and marveling at mysteries that struck others as mundane. This led him to embrace a morality and politics based on respect for free minds, free spirits, and free individuals. These traits are just as vital for this new century of globalization, in which our success will depend on our creativity, as they were for the beginning of the last century, when Einstein helped usher in the modern age.

  • American Sniper (Enhanced Edition): The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History

    American Sniper (Enhanced Edition): The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History
    Chris Kyle

    NOW A BLOCKBUSTER MOTION PICTURE DIRECTED BY CLINT EASTWOOD—NOMINATED FOR SIX ACADEMY AWARDS, INCLUDING BEST PICTUREThis special enhanced edition features more than 10 exclusive videos with Chris Kyle and an additional 15 images and descriptions of the weapons used by the armed forces in their fight against terrorism overseas.From 1999 to 2009, U.S. Navy Seal Chris Kyle recorded the most career sniper kills in United States military history. His fellow American warriors, whom he protected with deadly precision from rooftops and stealth positions during the Iraq War, called him “The Legend”; meanwhile, the enemy feared him so much they named him al-Shaitan (“the devil”) and placed a bounty on his head. Kyle, who was tragically killed in 2013, writes honestly about the pain of war—including the deaths of two close SEAL teammates—and in moving first-person passages throughout, his wife, Taya, speaks openly about the strains of war on their family, as well as on Chris. Gripping and unforgettable, Kyle’s masterful account of his extraordinary battlefield experiences ranks as one of the great war memoirs of all time.Please note that due to the large file size of these special features this enhanced e-book may take longer to download then a standard e-book.

  • The Great Nation: France from Louis XV to Napoleon: The New Penguin History of France

    The Great Nation: France from Louis XV to Napoleon: The New Penguin History of France
    Colin Jones

    There can be few more mesmerising historical narratives than the story of how the dazzlingly confident and secure monarchy Louis XIV, 'the Sun King', left to his successors in 1715 became the discredited, debt-ridden failure toppled by Revolution in1789. The further story of the bloody unravelling of the Revolution until its seizure by Napoleon is equally astounding.Colin Jones' brilliant new book is the first in 40 years to describe the whole period. Jones' key point in this gripping narrative is that France was NOT doomed to Revolution and that the 'ancien regime' DID remain dynamic and innovatory, twisting and turning until finally stoven in by the intolerable costs and humiliation of its wars with Britain.

  • The Perfectionists: How Precision Engineers Created the Modern World

    The Perfectionists: How Precision Engineers Created the Modern World
    Simon Winchester

    The revered New York Times bestselling author traces the development of technology from the Industrial Age to the Digital Age to explore the single component crucial to advancement—precision—in a superb history that is both an homage and a warning for our future.The rise of manufacturing could not have happened without an attention to precision. At the dawn of the Industrial Revolution in eighteenth-century England, standards of measurement were established, giving way to the development of machine tools—machines that make machines. Eventually, the application of precision tools and methods resulted in the creation and mass production of items from guns and glass to mirrors, lenses, and cameras—and eventually gave way to further breakthroughs, including gene splicing, microchips, and the Hadron Collider.Simon Winchester takes us back to origins of the Industrial Age, to England where he introduces the scientific minds that helped usher in modern production: John Wilkinson, Henry Maudslay, Joseph Bramah, Jesse Ramsden, and Joseph Whitworth. It was Thomas Jefferson who later exported their discoveries to the fledgling United States, setting the nation on its course to become a manufacturing titan. Winchester moves forward through time, to today’s cutting-edge developments occurring around the world, from America to Western Europe to Asia.As he introduces the minds and methods that have changed the modern world, Winchester explores fundamental questions. Why is precision important? What are the different tools we use to measure it? Who has invented and perfected it? Has the pursuit of the ultra-precise in so many facets of human life blinded us to other things of equal value, such as an appreciation for the age-old traditions of craftsmanship, art, and high culture? Are we missing something that reflects the world as it is, rather than the world as we think we would wish it to be? And can the precise and the natural co-exist in society?

  • Losing Hearts and Minds: American-Iranian Relations and International Education during the Cold War

    Losing Hearts and Minds: American-Iranian Relations and International Education during the Cold War
    Matthew K. Shannon

    Matthew K. Shannon provides readers with a reminder of a brief and congenial phase of the relationship between the United States and Iran. In Losing Hearts and Minds, Shannon tells the story of an influx of Iranian students to American college campuses between 1950 and 1979 that globalized U.S. institutions of higher education and produced alliances between Iranian youths and progressive Americans. Losing Hearts and Minds is a narrative rife with historical ironies. Because of its superpower competition with the USSR, the U.S. government worked with nongovernmental organizations to create the means for Iranians to train and study in the United States. The stated goal of this initiative was to establish a cultural foundation for the official relationship and to provide Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi with educated elites to administer an ambitious program of socioeconomic development. Despite these goals, Shannon locates the incubation of at least one possible version of the Iranian Revolution on American college campuses, which provided a space for a large and vocal community of dissident Iranian students to organize against the Pahlavi regime and earn the support of empathetic Americans. Together they rejected the Shah’s authoritarian model of development and called for civil and political rights in Iran, giving unwitting support to the rise of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

  • Death in the Air: The True Story of a Serial Killer, the Great London Smog, and the Strangling of a City

    Death in the Air: The True Story of a Serial Killer, the Great London Smog, and the Strangling of a City
    Kate Winkler Dawson

    A real-life thriller in the vein of The Devil in the White City, Kate Winkler Dawson's debut Death in the Air is a gripping, historical narrative of a serial killer, an environmental disaster, and an iconic city struggling to regain its footing. London was still recovering from the devastation of World War II when another disaster hit: for five long days in December 1952, a killer smog held the city firmly in its grip and refused to let go. Day became night, mass transit ground to a halt, criminals roamed the streets, and some 12,000 people died from the poisonous air. But in the chaotic aftermath, another killer was stalking the streets, using the fog as a cloak for his crimes. All across London, women were going missing–poor women, forgotten women. Their disappearances caused little alarm, but each of them had one thing in common: they had the misfortune of meeting a quiet, unassuming man, John Reginald Christie, who invited them back to his decrepit Notting Hill flat during that dark winter. They never left. The eventual arrest of the "Beast of Rillington Place" caused a media frenzy: were there more bodies buried in the walls, under the floorboards, in the back garden of this house of horrors? Was it the fog that had caused Christie to suddenly snap? And what role had he played in the notorious double murder that had happened in that same apartment building not three years before–a murder for which another, possibly innocent, man was sent to the gallows? The Great Smog of 1952 remains the deadliest air pollution disaster in world history, and John Reginald Christie is still one of the most unfathomable serial killers of modern times. Journalist Kate Winkler Dawson braids these strands together into a taut, compulsively readable true crime thriller about a man who changed the fate of the death penalty in the UK, and an environmental catastrophe with implications that still echo today.

  • American Settler Colonialism: A History

    American Settler Colonialism: A History
    W. Hixson

    Over the course of three centuries, American settlers helped to create the richest, most powerful nation in human history, even as they killed and displaced millions. This groundbreaking work shows that American history is defined by settler colonialism, providing a compelling framework through which to understand its rise to global dominance.

  • Mafia Spies: The Inside Story of the CIA, Gangsters, JFK, and Castro

    Mafia Spies: The Inside Story of the CIA, Gangsters, JFK, and Castro
    Thomas Maier

    From the Bestselling Author and Television Producer of MASTERS OF SEX, a True Story of Espionage and Mobsters, Based on the Never-Before-Released JFK Files, and Optioned by Warner Bros.Mafia Spies is the definitive account of America’s most remarkable espionage plots ever—with CIA agents, mob hitmen, “kompromat” sex, presidential indiscretion, and James Bond-like killing devices together in a top-secret mystery full of surprise twists and deadly intrigue. In the early 1960s, two top gangsters, Johnny Roselli and Sam Giancana, were hired by the CIA to kill Cuba’s Communist leader, Fidel Castro, only to wind up murdered themselves amidst Congressional hearings and a national debate about the JFK assassination. Mafia Spies revolves around the outlaw friendship of these two mob buddies and their fascinating world of CIA spies, fellow Mafioso in Chicago, Cuban exile commandos in Miami, beautiful Hollywood women, famous entertainers like Frank Sinatra’s Rat Pack in Las Vegas, Castro’s own spies in Havana and his double agents hidden in Florida, J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI snooping, and the Kennedy administration’s “Get Castro” obsession in Washington. Thomas Maier is among the first to take full advantage of the National Archives’ 2017–18 release of the long-suppressed JFK files, many of which deal with the CIA’s top secret anti-Castro operation in Florida and Cuba. With several new investigative findings, Mafia Spies is a spy exposé, murder mystery, and shocking true story that recounts America’s first foray into the assassination business, a tale with profound impact for today’s Trump era. Who killed Johnny and Sam—and why wasn’t Castro assassinated despite the CIA’s many clandestine efforts?

  • Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America s Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan

    Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America’s Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan
    Steve Coll

    Winner of the 2018 National Book Critics Circle Award for NonfictionLonglisted for the 2018 National Book Award for NonfictionFrom the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Ghost Wars, the epic and enthralling story of America's intelligence, military, and diplomatic efforts to defeat Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan since 9/11Prior to 9/11, the United States had been carrying out small-scale covert operations in Afghanistan, ostensibly in cooperation, although often in direct opposition, with I.S.I., the Pakistani intelligence agency. While the US was trying to quell extremists, a highly secretive and compartmentalized wing of I.S.I., known as "Directorate S," was covertly training, arming, and seeking to legitimize the Taliban, in order to enlarge Pakistan's sphere of influence. After 9/11, when fifty-nine countries, led by the U. S., deployed troops or provided aid to Afghanistan in an effort to flush out the Taliban and Al Qaeda, the U.S. was set on an invisible slow-motion collision course with Pakistan.Today we know that the war in Afghanistan would falter badly because of military hubris at the highest levels of the Pentagon, the drain on resources and provocation in the Muslim world caused by the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, and corruption. But more than anything, as Coll makes painfully clear, the war in Afghanistan was doomed because of the failure of the United States to apprehend the motivations and intentions of I.S.I.'s "Directorate S". This was a swirling and shadowy struggle of historic proportions, which endured over a decade and across both the Bush and Obama administrations, involving multiple secret intelligence agencies, a litany of incongruous strategies and tactics, and dozens of players, including some of the most prominent military and political figures. A sprawling American tragedy, the war was an open clash of arms but also a covert melee of ideas, secrets, and subterranean violence. Coll excavates this grand battle, which took place away from the gaze of the American public. With unsurpassed expertise, original research, and attention to detail, he brings to life a narrative at once vast and intricate, local and global, propulsive and painstaking. This is the definitive explanation of how America came to be so badly ensnared in an elaborate, factional, and seemingly interminable conflict in South Asia. Nothing less than a forensic examination of the personal and political forces that shape world history, Directorate S is a complete masterpiece of both investigative and narrative journalism.

  • Modern History in Pictures: A Visual Guide to the Events That Shaped Our World

    Modern History in Pictures: A Visual Guide to the Events That Shaped Our World
    DK

    The twentieth century saw seismic changes in every country and walk of life, from the collapse of global empires to the horrors of world war, from the rise of mass media to the development of motor transportation, air travel, and the digital revolution. In Modern History in Pictures, all of the most significant happenings of the last century are captured in a unique storyboard style, showing how each event unfolded through a series of contemporary photographs.

  • If You Survive: From Normandy to the Battle of the Bulge to the End of World War II, One American Officer s Riveting True Story

    If You Survive: From Normandy to the Battle of the Bulge to the End of World War II, One American Officer’s Riveting True Story
    George Wilson

    "If you survive your first day, I'll promote you."So promised George Wilson's World War II commanding officer in the hedgerows of Normandy — and it was to be a promise dramatically fulfilled. From July, 1944, to the closing days of the war, from the first penetration of the Siegfried Line to the Nazis' last desperate charge in the Battle of the Bulge, Wilson fought in the thickest of the action, helping take the small towns of northern France and Belgium building by building.Of all the men and officers who started out in Company F of the 4th Infantry Division with him, Wilson was the only one who finished. In the end, he felt not like a conqueror or a victor, but an exhausted survivor, left with nothing but his life — and his emotions.If You SurviveOne of the great first-person accounts of the making of a combat veteran, in the last, most violent months of World War II.

  • We Two: Victoria and Albert: Rulers, Partners, Rivals

    We Two: Victoria and Albert: Rulers, Partners, Rivals
    Gillian Gill

    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER"[A] delectable double bio . . . Talk about Victoria’s secret. . . . A fascinating portrait of a genuine love match, but one in which the partners dealt with surprisingly modern issues.” —USA TodayIt was the most influential marriage of the nineteenth century—and one of history’ s most enduring love stories. Traditional biographies tell us that Queen Victoria inherited the throne as a naïve teenager, when the British Empire was at the height of its power, and seemed doomed to find failure as a monarch and misery as a woman until she married her German cousin Albert and accepted him as her lord and master. Now renowned chronicler Gillian Gill turns this familiar story on its head, revealing a strong, feisty queen and a brilliant, fragile prince working together to build a family based on support, trust, and fidelity, qualities neither had seen much of as children. The love affair that emerges is far more captivating, complex, and relevant than that depicted in any previous account. The epic relationship began poorly. The cousins first met as teenagers for a few brief, awkward, chaperoned weeks in 1836. At seventeen, charming rather than beautiful, Victoria already “showed signs of wanting her own way.” Albert, the boy who had been groomed for her since birth, was chubby, self-absorbed, and showed no interest in girls, let alone this princess. So when they met again in 1839 as queen and presumed prince-consort-to-be, neither had particularly high hopes. But the queen was delighted to discover a grown man, refined, accomplished, and whiskered. “Albert is beautiful!” Victoria wrote, and she proposed just three days later. As Gill reveals, Victoria and Albert entered their marriage longing for intimate companionship, yet each was determined to be the ruler. This dynamic would continue through the years—each spouse, headstrong and impassioned, eager to lead the marriage on his or her own terms. For two decades, Victoria and Albert engaged in a very public contest for dominance. Against all odds, the marriage succeeded, but it was always a work in progress. And in the end, it was Albert’s early death that set the Queen free to create the myth of her marriage as a peaceful idyll and her husband as Galahad, pure and perfect. As Gill shows, the marriage of Victoria and Albert was great not because it was perfect but because it was passionate and complicated. Wonderfully nuanced, surprising, often acerbic—and informed by revealing excerpts from the pair’s journals and letters—We Two is a revolutionary portrait of a queen and her prince, a fascinating modern perspective on a couple who have become a legend.BONUS: This edition contains a reader's guide.

  • Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania

    Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania
    Erik Larson

    #1 New York Times BestsellerFrom the bestselling author and master of narrative nonfiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the LusitaniaOn May 1, 1915, with WWI entering its tenth month, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were surprisingly at ease, even though Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone. For months, German U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era’s great transatlantic “Greyhounds”—the fastest liner then in service—and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack. Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger’s U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small—hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more—all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history. It is a story that many of us think we know but don’t, and Erik Larson tells it thrillingly, switching between hunter and hunted while painting a larger portrait of America at the height of the Progressive Era. Full of glamour and suspense, Dead Wake brings to life a cast of evocative characters, from famed Boston bookseller Charles Lauriat to pioneering female architect Theodate Pope to President Woodrow Wilson, a man lost to grief, dreading the widening war but also captivated by the prospect of new love. Gripping and important, Dead Wake captures the sheer drama and emotional power of a disaster whose intimate details and true meaning have long been obscured by history.

  • Pearl Harbor: From Infamy to Greatness

    Pearl Harbor: From Infamy to Greatness
    Craig Nelson

    “A valuable reexamination” (Booklist, starred review) of the event that changed twentieth-century America—Pearl Harbor—based on years of research and new information uncovered by a New York Times bestselling author.The America we live in today was born, not on July 4, 1776, but on December 7, 1941, when an armada of 354 Japanese warplanes supported by aircraft carriers, destroyers, and midget submarines suddenly and savagely attacked the United States, killing 2,403 men—and forced America’s entry into World War II. Pearl Harbor: From Infamy to Greatness follows the sailors, soldiers, pilots, diplomats, admirals, generals, emperor, and president as they engineer, fight, and react to this stunningly dramatic moment in world history. Beginning in 1914, bestselling author Craig Nelson maps the road to war, when Franklin D. Roosevelt, then the Assistant Secretary of the Navy, attended the laying of the keel of the USS Arizona at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Writing with vivid intimacy, Nelson traces Japan’s leaders as they lurch into ultranationalist fascism, which culminates in their scheme to terrify America with one of the boldest attacks ever waged. Within seconds, the country would never be the same. Backed by a research team’s five years of work, as well as Nelson’s thorough re-examination of the original evidence assembled by federal investigators, this page-turning and definitive work “weaves archival research, interviews, and personal experiences from both sides into a blow-by-blow narrative of destruction liberally sprinkled with individual heroism, bizarre escapes, and equally bizarre tragedies” (Kirkus Reviews). Nelson delivers all the terror, chaos, violence, tragedy, and heroism of the attack in stunning detail, and offers surprising conclusions about the tragedy’s unforeseen and resonant consequences that linger even today.

  • The Forgotten: How the People of One Pennsylvania County Elected Donald Trump and Changed America

    The Forgotten: How the People of One Pennsylvania County Elected Donald Trump and Changed America
    Ben Bradlee

    The people of Luzerne County, Pennsylvania voted Democratic for decades, until Donald Trump flipped it in 2016. What happened?Named one of the "juiciest political books to come in 2018" by Entertainment Weekly.In The Forgotten, Ben Bradlee Jr. reports on how voters in Luzerne County, a pivotal county in a crucial swing state, came to feel like strangers in their own land – marginalized by flat or falling wages, rapid demographic change, and a liberal culture that mocks their faith and patriotism.Fundamentally rural and struggling with changing demographics and limited opportunity, Luzerne County can be seen as a microcosm of the nation. In The Forgotten, Trump voters speak for themselves, explaining how they felt others were 'cutting in line' and that the federal government was taking too much money from the employed and giving it to the idle. The loss of breadwinner status, and more importantly, the loss of dignity, primed them for a candidate like Donald Trump. The political facts of a divided America are stark, but the stories of the men, women and families in The Forgotten offer a kaleidoscopic and fascinating portrait of the complex on-the-ground political reality of America today.

  • The China Mirage: The Hidden History of American Disaster in Asia

    The China Mirage: The Hidden History of American Disaster in Asia
    James Bradley

    "Bradley is sharp and rueful, and a voice for a more seasoned, constructive vision of our international relations with East Asia." –Christian Science Monitor James Bradley introduces us to the prominent Americans–including FDR's grandfather, Warren Delano–who in the 1800s made their fortunes in the China opium trade. Meanwhile, American missionaries sought a myth: noble Chinese peasants eager to Westernize.The media propagated this mirage, and FDR believed that supporting Chiang Kai-shek would make China America's best friend in Asia. But Chiang was on his way out and when Mao Zedong instead came to power, Americans were shocked, wondering how we had "lost China."From the 1850s to the origins of the Vietnam War, Bradley reveals how American misconceptions about China have distorted our policies and led to the avoidable deaths of millions. The China Mirage dynamically explores the troubled history that still defines U.S.-Chinese relations today.

  • The Witchcraft Sourcebook: Second Edition, Edition 2

    The Witchcraft Sourcebook: Second Edition, Edition 2
    Brian P. Levack

    The Witchcraft Sourcebook, now in its second edition, is a fascinating collection of documents that illustrates the development of ideas about witchcraft from ancient times to the eighteenth century. Many of the sources come from the period between 1400 and 1750, when more than 100,000 people – most of them women – were prosecuted for witchcraft in Europe and colonial America. During these years the prominent stereotype of the witch as an evil magician and servant of Satan emerged. Catholics and Protestants alike feared that the Devil and his human confederates were destroying Christian society. Including trial records, demonological treatises and sermons, literary texts, narratives of demonic possession, and artistic depiction of witches, the documents reveal how contemporaries from various periods have perceived alleged witches and their activities. Brian P. Levack shows how notions of witchcraft have changed over time and considers the connection between gender and witchcraft and the nature of the witch's perceived power. This second edition includes an extended section on the witch trials in England, Scotland and New England, fully revised and updated introductions to the sources to include the latest scholarship and a short bibliography at the end of each introduction to guide students in their further reading. The Sourcebook provides students of the history of witchcraft with a broad range of sources, many of which have been translated into English for the first time, with commentary and background by one of the leading scholars in the field.

  • Operation Barbarossa and Germany s Defeat in the East

    Operation Barbarossa and Germany’s Defeat in the East
    David Stahel

    Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of the Soviet Union, began the largest and most costly campaign in military history. Its failure was a key turning point of the Second World War. The operation was planned as a Blitzkrieg to win Germany its Lebensraum in the east, and the summer of 1941 is well-known for the German army's unprecedented victories and advances. Yet the German Blitzkrieg depended almost entirely upon the motorised Panzer groups, particularly those of Army Group Centre. Using archival records, in this book David Stahel presents a history of Germany's summer campaign from the perspective of the two largest and most powerful Panzer groups on the Eastern front. Stahel's research provides a fundamental reassessment of Germany's war against the Soviet Union, highlighting the prodigious internal problems of the vital Panzer forces and revealing that their demise in the earliest phase of the war undermined the whole German invasion.

  • The AEF Way of War: The American Army and Combat in World War I

    The AEF Way of War: The American Army and Combat in World War I
    Mark Ethan Grotelueschen

    This 2007 book provides the most comprehensive examination of American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) combat doctrine and methods ever published. It shows how AEF combat units actually fought on the Western Front in World War I. It describes how four AEF divisions (the 1st, 2nd, th, and 77th) planned and conducted their battles and how they adapted their doctrine, tactics, and other operational methods during the war. General John Pershing and other AEF leaders promulgated an inadequate prewar doctrine, with only minor modification, as the official doctrine of the AEF. Many early American attacks suffered from these unrealistic ideas that retained too much faith in the infantry rifleman on the modern battlefield. However, many AEF divisions adjusted their doctrine and operational methods as they fought, preparing more comprehensive attack plans, employing flexible infantry formations, and maximizing firepower to seize limited objectives.

  • Trade in Strangers: The Beginnings of Mass Migration to North America

    Trade in Strangers: The Beginnings of Mass Migration to North America
    Marianne S. Wokeck

    American historians have long been fascinated by the "peopling" of North America in the seventeenth century. Who were the immigrants, and how and why did they make their way across the ocean? Most of the attention, however, has been devoted to British immigrants who came as free people or as indentured servants (primarily to New England and the Chesapeake) and to Africans who were forced to come as slaves. Trade in Strangers focuses on the eighteenth century, when new immigrants began to flood the colonies at an unprecedented rate. Most of these immigrants were German and Irish, and they were coming primarily to the middle colonies via an increasingly sophisticated form of transport.Wokeck shows how first the German system of immigration, and then the Irish system, evolved from earlier, haphazard forms into modern mass transoceanic migration. At the center of this development were merchants on both sides of the Atlantic who organized a business that enabled them to make profitable use of underutilized cargo space on ships bound from Europe to the British North American colonies. This trade offered German and Irish immigrants transatlantic passage on terms that allowed even people of little and modest means to pursue opportunities that beckoned in the New World.Trade in Strangers fills an important gap in our knowledge of America's immigration history. The eighteenth-century changes established a model for the better-known mass migrations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, which drew wave after wave of Europeans to the New World in the hope of making a better life than the one they left behind—a story that is familiar to most modern Americans.

  • Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe: A History from the French Revolution to the Present Day

    Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe: A History from the French Revolution to the Present Day
    Annette F. Timm

    Through a blend of history and historiography, Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe provides a clear and concise introduction to gender history in the region. The detailed examples and engaging language make this a useful overview for students not only of gender history, but also of European history more widely, as considerations of gender illuminate our understanding of historical change and individual experience. In six thematic chapters that cover democracy and capitalism, imperialism and war, the authors explain how gender roles were socially constructed and how they influenced political and economic developments during the period. This new edition has been thoroughly re-edited and expanded to take account of ongoing methodological innovation and recent scholarship in the field. The book also includes a brand new chapter on sexuality in the 21st century and extended material on: · Scandinavia · The Mediterranean · Alternative Sexualities · Women's history and femininity Gender, Sex and the Shaping of Modern Europe is a key text for all students of gender history and the history of modern Europe in general.

  • Thunderstruck

    Thunderstruck
    Erik Larson

    A true story of love, murder, and the end of the world’s “great hush.”In Thunderstruck, Erik Larson tells the interwoven stories of two men—Hawley Crippen, a very unlikely murderer, and Guglielmo Marconi, the obsessive creator of a seemingly supernatural means of communication—whose lives intersect during one of the greatest criminal chases of all time.Set in Edwardian London and on the stormy coasts of Cornwall, Cape Cod, and Nova Scotia, Thunderstruck evokes the dynamism of those years when great shipping companies competed to build the biggest, fastest ocean liners; scientific advances dazzled the public with visions of a world transformed; and the rich outdid one another with ostentatious displays of wealth. Against this background, Marconi races against incredible odds and relentless skepticism to perfect his invention: the wireless, a prime catalyst for the emergence of the world we know today. Meanwhile, Crippen, “the kindest of men,” nearly commits the perfect murder.With his unparalleled narrative skills, Erik Larson guides us through a relentlessly suspenseful chase over the waters of the North Atlantic. Along the way, he tells of a sad and tragic love affair that was described on the front pages of newspapers around the world, a chief inspector who found himself strangely sympathetic to the killer and his lover, and a driven and compelling inventor who transformed the way we communicate.

  • The Last Lion:: Winston Spencer Churchill: Alone, 1932-1940, Volume 2

    The Last Lion:: Winston Spencer Churchill: Alone, 1932-1940, Volume 2
    William Manchester

    The second volume of William Manchester's masterful account of Winston Churchill's life. Alone is the second volume of William Manchester's brilliant three-volume biography of Winston Churchill. In this volume, we witness the war within, before the colossal war to come. During this period, Churchill was tested as few men are: relentlessly pursued by creditors, disowned by his own party, vociferously dismissed by the press as a warmonger, and twice nearly lost his seat in Parliament. Yet despite his personal and political troubles, Churchill managed to assemble a vast, underground intelligence network-both within the British government and on the continent-which provided him with more complete and accurate information on Germany than the British government. Recognizing the horrifying truth, Churchill stood almost alone against Nazi aggression and the sordid British and French policy of appeasement.Manchester's luminous portrait never loses sight of Churchill the man-a man with limitations, especially his callousness toward others (including his supporters) and his recklessness, which could border on the foolhardy; but also a man whose vision was global and whose courage was boundless. Here is Churchill as a light in the approaching darkness, readying himself for the terrible stand to come.

  • The French Revolution and Napoleon: Crucible of the Modern World

    The French Revolution and Napoleon: Crucible of the Modern World
    Lynn Hunt

    Lynn Hunt and Jack R. Censer's The French Revolution and Napoleon provides a globally-oriented narrative history of events from 1789 until the fall of Napoleon. It emphasizes the global origins and consequences of the French Revolution and explains why it is the formative event for modern politics. The book integrates global competition, fiscal crisis, slavery and the beginnings of nationalism with the more traditional emphases on human rights and constitutions, terror and violence, and the rise of authoritarianism. This global approach then enables the authors – two world-renowned scholars in the field – to clearly illustrate how the French Revolution and Napoleonic Empire changed all the political givens for Europe, the Americas, North Africa and parts of Asia as well. Including numerous illustrations and maps, end-of-chapter questions, timelines and primary source document extracts for analysis in each chapter, this book is essential reading for all students of modern European history who want to understand the French Revolution and Napoleonic Empire in a truly global context.

  • Erebus: One Ship, Two Epic Voyages, and the Greatest Naval Mystery of All Time

    Erebus: One Ship, Two Epic Voyages, and the Greatest Naval Mystery of All Time
    Michael Palin

    Driven by a passion for travel and history and a love of ships and the sea, former Monty Python stalwart and beloved television globe-trotter Michael Palin explores the world of HMS Erebus, last seen on an ill-fated voyage to chart the Northwest Passage.Michael Palin brings the fascinating story of the Erebus and its occupants to life, from its construction as a bomb vessel in 1826 through the flagship years of James Clark Ross’s Antarctic expedition and finally to Sir John Franklin’s quest for the holy grail of navigation—a route through the Northwest Passage, where the ship disappeared into the depths of the sea for more than 150 years. It was rediscovered under the arctic waters in 2014.Palin travels across the world—from Tasmania to the Falkland Islands and the Canadian Arctic—to offer a firsthand account of the terrain and conditions that would have confronted the Erebus and her doomed final crew. Delving into the research, he describes the intertwined careers of the two men who shared the ship’s journeys: Ross, the organizational genius who mapped much of the Antarctic coastline and oversaw some of the earliest scientific experiments to be conducted there; and Franklin, who, at the age of sixty and after a checkered career, commanded the ship on its last disastrous venture. Expertly researched and illustrated with maps, photographs, paintings, and engravings, Erebus is an evocative account of two journeys: one successful and forgotten, the other tragic yet unforgettable.

  • Columbine

    Columbine
    Dave Cullen

    A masterpiece of reportage, this is the definitive account of the Columbine massacre, its aftermath, and its significance, from the acclaimed journalist who followed the story from the outset."The tragedies keep coming. As we reel from the latest horror . . ."So begins a new epilogue, illustrating how Columbine became the template for nearly two decades of "spectacle murders." It is a false script, seized upon by a generation of new killers. In the wake of Parkland, Charleston, Newtown, Aurora, and Virginia Tech, the imperative to understand the crime that sparked this plague grows more urgent every year.What really happened April 20, 1999? The horror of Columbine left an indelible stamp on the American psyche, but most of what we "know" is wrong. It wasn't about jocks, goths, or the Trench Coat Mafia. Dave Cullen was one of the first reporters on scene, and spent ten years on this book — widely recognized as the definitive account. With a keen investigative eye and psychological acumen, Cullen draws on mountains of evidence, insights from the world's leading forensic psychologists, and the killers' own words and drawings — several reproduced in a new appendix for the paperback. In this New York Times bestselling work, Cullen paints raw portraits of two polar opposite killers, who stand in stark contrast against the flashes of resilience and redemption among the survivors of the Columbine massacre.*Includes reading group guide*