Books for the News

Friday remainders

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Robert Hariman, co-author of No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs, Public Culture, and Liberal Democracy, was quoted at length in an interesting article posted to the New York Times City Room blog. The article focuses on the social significance Alfred Eisenstaedt’s famous photograph of an exuberant sailor planting a kiss on a nurse in the heart of Times Square on V-J day 1945. Marking the 62nd anniversary of the kiss, about 75 people turned up in Times Square on Tuesday to re-enact the event. Hariman delivers an interesting discussion of this phenomenon and the lasting imapct of this iconic image in American culture. Also read an excerpt from Hariman’s book.
Marshal Zeringue who authors the literary blog The Page 99 Test, asked Barbara Maria Stafford, author of Echo Objects: The Cognitive Work of Images, to apply the test to her book. The test requires authors to open to page 99 of their book and and write a brief synopsis of the contents of that page. Stafford’s response delves into a fascinating discussion of the conscious and unconscious effects of images.
Kevin Rozario, author of the The Culture of Calamity: Disaster and the Making of Modern America, recently discussed his book on BBC’s Thinking Allowed. Rozario’s book is an exploration of the role of disasters, both natural and man made, in the shaping of the American social consciousness. Archived audio is up on the BBC’s website. Rozario was also recently interviewed along the same lines in a piece published by the Chronicle of Higher Education called “The Upside of America’s fascination with Disasters.” You can read an excerpt from Rozario’s book on our website as well.
Ward Farnsworth, author of The Legal Analyst: A Toolkit for Thinking about the Law, has set up a great website for his book that includes some interesting excerpts in down loadable format, and some great reviews of his fascinating guide through the world of legal thought. Find it at
Last but not least, Jeffrey J. Kripal, author of Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion, was interviewed by Paul Comstock in the California Literary Review. In the interview, Kripal discusses the history and people of Esalen, the nation’s premier institution for alternative and experiential education and hothouse of the American counterculture. We also feature an excerpt from Kripal’s book on our website.