We’ve got Parker. But do you? In the month of September, our free ebook takes you to the darker side of crime fiction: things get a bit remorseless quickly, as relentless thief Parker takes hard-boiled to the next level. It’s time to settle The Score. Cult classics, these Starkly noirish riffs. We’ve set up a website devoted to the series, which began nearly fifty years ago and ran until 2008–and has been reprinted by volume by volume by the Press this past half decade. You’ll find the entire canon there at 30 percent off, but who am I to criminally undermine our own endeavor (besides, truly: the kind of Parker I hang with knew that men seldom made passes at girls who wore glasses, and she ain’t about to anti-hero herself mid-caper or two)? I’ll leave things to Levi Stahl, promotions director, paperback sleuth, lit-blogger extraordinaire, and serious Parkerfile:
For nearly fifty years now, crime novel fans have been thrilling to the exploits of Parker, the ruthless, violent, and taciturn anti-hero of a series written by Donald E. Westlake under the pseudonym Richard Stark. In 2008, the University of Chicago Press began to bring the Parker novels back into . . .
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Recently, in light of the tenth anniversary of the events that unfolded on September 11, 2001, discourse in the American public sphere has centered on a remembrance of what was lost that day. Yet, at the same time, many darker elements of the national psyche have also been confronted: reckoning the health plight of rescue workers, for instance, and questioning exploitation of the events for any war or terror produced in their wake with a clarity produced in hindsight.
At Chicago, we bear in mind the lessons gleaned from David Simpson’s 9/11: The Culture of Commemoration, which examines the paradoxical nature of American reactions following the event, from angles of aestheticization, exploitation, and appropriation. Simpson’s book, which expands on several essays published in the London Review of Books, analyzes our responses to the events of that September morning with the persuasive sweep of humanities scholarship, ultimately using the tools of this cultural knowledge to help us digest the tragedy and its deep and wide-sweeping consequences.
At the University of Chicago, the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism (CPOST) , a social science research group dedicated to advancing knowledge of international security and terrorism, has put together an admirable . . .
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Before porn was legal, there was Beate Uhse (1921-2001). Before there were iconic other javelin champions-turned-stunt pilots-turned-sex-shop-proprietors, there was Beate Uhse. And before there was Beate Uhse, there was an erotic underworld in Germany, rife with untrained abortionists, uneducated practitioners, and a whole lot of folks looking for guides to “marital hygiene.” Basically, before there was Beate Uhse, there was Beate Uhse undone: a perfectly fertile breeding ground, if you will, for an assertively proto-feminist stock offering.
Elizabeth Heineman’s Before Porn was Legal: The Erotica Empire of Beate Uhse, recently profiled by New Books in History (which resulted in the most downloaded interview in the site’s existence), takes on the story of the former Luftwaffe pilot, war widow, and black marketer, ultimately placing the erotica entrepreneur at the forefront of Germany’s socio-sexual revolution. Through Uhse’s story, Heineman explores how one mail-order business (spearheaded by Uhse’s self-penned guide to the rhythm method) battled restrictive legislation and conservative mores in order to bring consumers the new products demanded by a burgeoning liberal marketplace that was anxious for sexual self-help. If that doesn’t quite tempt you enough into uncovering more of what’s—well, under the covers—of the book, then Heineman’s innovative reads of . . .
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