Press Releases

Press Release: Dear, The Intelligibility of Nature

August 27, 2006
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Press Release: Dear, The Intelligibility of Nature

“The Intelligibility of Nature is a very impressive and compelling book about the relationship between instrumentalism and realism in the sciences from 1600 to 1950. Peter Dear argues for a fascinating reinterpretation of the Scientific Revolution and its aftermath, showing how between the time of Descarts and that of Lavoisier, natural philosophy and practical techniques merged: that process, this book shows, was decisive for the emergence of modern science. This is a lucid and intelligent history.” —Simon Schaffer, University of Cambridge Read the press release. . . .

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Press Release: Gosset, Divas and Scholars

August 25, 2006
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Press Release: Gosset, Divas and Scholars

Philip Gossett is the world’s leading expert on performing Italian opera. Conductors from Riccardo Muti to Bruno Bartoletti, and singers from Marilyn Horne to Renée Fleming, consult him on how to get the works of composers like Verdi and Rossini right. This magesterial book, the capstone to Gossett’s storied career and the culmination of his decades-long experience, brings colorfully to life the challenges, and occasionally even the scandals, that attend the production of the world’s most favorite operas. Gossett here weds incomparable expertise with his own triumphant experiences producing such celebrated and beloved works as La traviatta, La boheme, and Rigoletto. Part musical history and part back-stage-pass, Divas and Scholars will not only enthrall aficionados of Italian opera but also newcomers seeking a more reliable introduction to it. Read the press release. We also have an excerpt. . . .

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Press Release: Frumkin, Strategic Giving

August 18, 2006
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Press Release: Frumkin, Strategic Giving

The philanthropic landscape is changing dramatically as a new generation of wealthy donors seeks to leave its mark on the public sphere. Peter Frumkin reveals in Strategic Giving why these donors could benefit from having a comprehensive plan to guide their giving. After listening for years to scores of individual and institutional funders discuss the challenges of giving wisely, Frumkin argues here that contemporary philanthropy requires a thorough rethinking of its underlying logic. Philanthropy should be seen, he contends, as both a powerful way to meet public needs and a meaningful way to express private beliefs and commitments. He demonstrates that finding a way to simultaneously fulfill both of these functions is crucial to the survival of philanthropy and its potential to support pluralism in society. Essential reading for donors, researchers, and anyone involved with the world of philanthropy, Strategic Giving provides a new basis for understanding philanthropic effectiveness and a promising new way for philanthropy to achieve the legitimacy that has at times eluded it. Read the press release. . . .

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Press release: Taussig, Walter Benjamin’s Grave

July 28, 2006
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Press release: Taussig, Walter Benjamin’s Grave

Michael Taussig has emerged as one of our most daring intellectuals. His books, which blend rigorous anthropological theory with elements of memoir, literary theory, archival history, and even fiction, are of a genre all their own. As the New York Times commented, “his books read more like beatnik novels than somber analyses of other cultures.” Walter Benjamin’s Grave collects many of Taussig’s best short essays which have been published over the past decade while adding a brand new one, providing readers with a fascinating and genuinely entertaining overview of this singular thinker and writer. Read the press release. Read an excerpt from the book. . . .

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Press release: Laufer, Corporate Bodies and Guilty Minds

July 28, 2006
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Press release: Laufer, Corporate Bodies and Guilty Minds

The recent convictions of former Enron executives Ken Lay and Tom Skilling are merely the latest names in a spate of verdicts handed down against high-profile executives. In only the past few years, Tyco’s Dennis Kozlowski, WorldCom’s Bernie Ebbers, Adelphia’s John Rigas, and the American goddess of domesticity Martha Stewart each received legitimate jail time. But should Americans really feel confident that these verdicts and measures are anything more than window dressing? Are we really beginning to solve the problem? For William Laufer, author of Corporate Bodies and Guilty Minds, the answers are “no” and “no.” Read the press release. . . .

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Press release: Scafi, Mapping Paradise

July 21, 2006
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Press release: Scafi, Mapping Paradise

The first book to show how paradise has been expressed in cartographic form throughout two millennia, Mapping Paradise explores the intellectual conditions that made the medieval mapping of paradise possible and the challenge for mapmakers to make visible a place that was geographically inaccessible and yet real, remote in time and yet still the scene of an essential episode of the history of salvation. A history of the cartography of paradise that journeys from the beginning of Christianity to the present day, Mapping Paradise reveals how the most deeply reflective thoughts about the ultimate destiny of all human life have been molded—and remolded—generation by generation. Read the press release. . . .

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Press release: McCloskey, The Bourgeois Virtues

July 18, 2006
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Press release: McCloskey, The Bourgeois Virtues

The Bourgeois Virtues argues that capitalism is good for us, that markets improve ethics, that free enterprise makes us better people, and that bourgeois virtues isn’t an oxymoron along the lines of military intelligence or Microsoft Works. Countering centuries of pat assumptions and unexamined thinking here, Deirdre McCloskey takes dead aim at critics who have argued for nearly a millennium and a half that capitalism is responsible for everything from financial and moral poverty to world wars and spiritual desuetude. Read the press release. Read an excerpt from the book. . . .

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Press release: Ohnuki-Tierney, Kamikaze Diaries

July 18, 2006
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Press release: Ohnuki-Tierney, Kamikaze Diaries

The story of the kamizake or tokkōtai is among the most tragic and misunderstood in the history of World War II. Commonly remembered as suicide pilots who volunteered to die for their country, a significantly large number of these student soldiers were in fact gentle souls who were forced into their desperate mission. Fortunately, some of the kamizake also wrote diaries, and six of them are collected here in this heartbreaking but much needed corrective to their many caricatures. Read the press release. Read an excerpt from the book. . . .

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Press release: Gilfoyle, Millennium Park

July 16, 2006
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Press release: Gilfoyle, Millennium Park

In the extraordinary spirit of vision and ambition that characterized the Columbian Exposition of 1893, where new and exciting innovations in art, architecture, and urban design were so dramatically unveiled on a world stage, Millennium Park opened in downtown Chicago two years ago. Featuring now iconic works by Frank Gehry, Anish Kapoor, Jaume Plensa, and Kathryn Gustafson, the park was promptly hailed in newspapers and magazines across the country as an incomparable global tourist destination and a crowning achievement for the city of Chicago. With more than 500 images (and most in color), this beautifully illustrated book tells the story of how Millennium Park came to be. Read the press release. You may also take our trivia quiz. . . .

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Press release: Timmermans, Postmortem

July 13, 2006
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Press release: Timmermans, Postmortem

Postmortem shows in utterly fascinating and close up detail what death investigations are like from behind the scenes. Stefan Timmermans spent three years shadowing medical examiners—the type you’d find on the hit TV series CSI—to show how these professionals unlock the secrets of corpses and speak to the living on behalf of the dead. More broadly, he also considers how death titillates us as an existential drama, exploring why we find the work these medical examiners perform so compelling. Read the press release. Read an excerpt from the book. . . .

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