Wilkes University

New Books: Current Month February 2018

See the new books Farley Library has added to its collection!

New Book Highlights

We Look Like the Enemy

"There is a class split," writes Rachel Shabi, "that runs on ethnic lines"--specifically, between Jews of European origin and those whose ancestral homes were Arab countries. Middle Eastern Jews from Egypt, Morocco, Iraq, Yemen, and other Arab lands make up nearly half of Israel's population. Yet European or "Ashkenazi" Jews have historically disparaged them because the emigrants looked Arab, spoke Arabic, and brought with them what was viewed as a "backward" Middle Eastern culture. David Ben Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, called them "human dust with no Jewish or human culture." Such opinions permeated Israeli society. Middle Eastern or "Mizrahi" emigrants were kept in transit camp longer than Ashkenazi Jews and had poorer housing, educational, and occupational opportunities. Shabi returned to Israel for a year to investigate the tense relations that still exist between Mizrahi and Ashkenazi Jews in Israel. She traces the history of this split, starting with the centuries-old story of the Jewish Diaspora, then discussing how Mizrahi figured in the founding and building of Israel, protests by the Mizrahi Black Panther Party in 1971--"the first clash of Jew against Jew in Israel"--and a successful campaign in the 1990s to get the Israeli Ministry of Education to remove negative stereotyping of Yemenites in a textbook. Internalizing such stereotypes led a Moroccan Israeli university professor to begin passing for Ashkenazi when she was only eight years old, even though it meant "destroying, down to the roots, the identity that my parents gave me...rejecting everything: their past, their language, their values." Israel's striving to be a European country and demeaning the culture of its Mizrahi citizens has dislocated those citizens from their own Judeo-Arab identities, and has helped make Israel a misfit state in the Middle East. Shabi combines historical research with intimate oral interviews to shed light on ethnic injustice within Israel, past and present. Her passionate, personal connection and the heartfelt stories told by other Mizrahis make "We Looked Like the Enemy" a stunning, unforgettable book.

You're Hired!

Featuring conversations with more than thirty sociology majors on their career trajectories, responses from employers on why they hire sociology majors, and practical career advice, You're Hired! Putting Your Sociology Major to Work offers readers a comprehensive account of the opportunities a sociology major provides.  The book begins with the conversations, which convey real world examples of sociologists' motivations for pursuing the discipline, their career paths, the joys and challenges of their choices, and their advice to current and future students of sociology. Their careers range from politics and technology to medical research and community activism; business and the arts to sports and the environment, all which demonstrate the breadth of career options available to sociology majors. Later chapters present feedback from employers on the skills sociologists offer to the workplace along with guidance on career entry and professional development.  Those interviewed cover a broad spectrum of society and career progression; some are on the starting block of their careers while others look back from retirement on fulfilling and meaningful professional lives. They represent regional, gender, racial, and the social class reality of today's world.  Written in an accessible and upbeat style, You're Hired! is an informative and inspiring read for current undergraduates, aspiring students, and parents alike.

Life in Code

Named one of the best books of 2017 byThe New York Times Book Review,GQ,Slate,San Francisco Chronicle, Bookforum, andKirkus The never-more-necessary return of one of our most vital and eloquent voices on technology and culture, the author of the seminalClose to the Machine The last twenty years have brought us the rise of the internet, the development of artificial intelligence, the ubiquity of once unimaginably powerful computers, and the thorough transformation of our economy and society. Through it all, Ellen Ullman lived and worked inside that rising culture of technology, and inLife in Code she tells the continuing story of the changes it wrought with a unique, expert perspective. When Ellen Ullman moved to San Francisco in the early 1970s and went on to become a computer programmer, she was joining a small, idealistic, and almost exclusively male cadre that aspired to genuinely change the world. In 1997 Ullman wroteClose to the Machine, the now classic and still definitive account of life as a coder at the birth of what would be a sweeping technological, cultural, and financial revolution. Twenty years later, the story Ullman recounts is neither one of unbridled triumph nor a nostalgic denial of progress. It is necessarily the story of digital technology's loss of innocence as it entered the cultural mainstream, and it is a personal reckoning with all that has changed, and so much that hasn't.Life in Code is an essential text toward our understanding of the last twenty years--and the next twenty.

Pandora's Lab

What happens when ideas presented as science lead us in the wrongdirection? History is filled with brilliant ideas that gave rise to disaster, and this book explores the most fascinating--and significant--missteps: from opium's heyday as the pain reliever of choice to recognition of opioids as a major cause of death in the U.S.; from the rise of trans fats as the golden ingredient for tastier, cheaper food to the heart disease epidemic that followed; and from the cries to ban DDT for the sake of the environment to an epidemic-level rise in world malaria. These are today's sins of science--as deplorable as mistaken ideas from the past such as advocating racial purity or using lobotomies as a cure for mental illness. These unwitting errors add up to seven lessons both cautionary and profound, narrated by renowned author and speaker Paul A. Offit. A physician best known for his research and strong views about childhood vaccination, Offit uses these lessons to investigate how we can separate good science from bad, using some of today's most controversial creations--e-cigarettes, GMOs, drug treatments for ADHD--as case studies. For every "Aha!" moment that should have been an "Oh no," this book is an engrossing account of how science has been misused disastrously--and how we can learn to use its power for good.

The End of Alzheimer's

The instant New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller A groundbreaking plan to prevent and reverse Alzheimer's Disease that fundamentally changes how we understand cognitive decline.   Everyone knows someone who has survived cancer, but until now no one knows anyone who has survived Alzheimer's Disease.    In this paradigm shifting book, Dale Bredesen, MD, offers real hope to anyone looking to prevent and even reverse Alzheimer's Disease and cognitive decline.  Revealing that AD is not one condition, as it is currently treated, but three, The End of Alzheimer's outlines 36 metabolic factors (micronutrients, hormone levels, sleep) that can trigger "downsizing" in the brain. The protocol shows us how to rebalance these factors using lifestyle modifications like taking B12, eliminating gluten, or improving oral hygiene.   The results are impressive. Of the first ten patients on the protocol, nine displayed significant improvement with 3-6 months; since then the protocol has yielded similar results with hundreds more. Now, The End of Alzheimer's brings new hope to a broad audience of patients, caregivers, physicians, and treatment centers with a fascinating look inside the science and a complete step-by-step plan that fundamentally changes how we treat and even think about AD.

Prairie Fires

The first comprehensive historical biography of Laura Ingalls Wilder, the beloved author of the Little House on the Prairie books One of The New York Times Book Review's 10 Best Books of the Year Millions of readers of Little House on the Prairie believe they know Laura Ingalls--the pioneer girl who survived blizzards and near-starvation on the Great Plains, and the woman who wrote the famous autobiographical books. But the true saga of her life has never been fully told. Now, drawing on unpublished manuscripts, letters, diaries, and land and financial records, Caroline Fraser--the editor of the Library of America edition of the Little House series--masterfully fills in the gaps in Wilder's biography. Revealing the grown-up story behind the most influential childhood epic of pioneer life, she also chronicles Wilder's tumultuous relationship with her journalist daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, setting the record straight regarding charges of ghostwriting that have swirled around the books. The Little House books, for all the hardships they describe, are paeans to the pioneer spirit, portraying it as triumphant against all odds. But Wilder's real life was harder and grittier than that, a story of relentless struggle, rootlessness, and poverty. It was only in her sixties, after losing nearly everything in the Great Depression, that she turned to children's books, recasting her hardscrabble childhood as a celebratory vision of homesteading--and achieving fame and fortune in the process, in one of the most astonishing rags-to-riches episodes in American letters. Spanning nearly a century of epochal change, from the Indian Wars to the Dust Bowl, Wilder's dramatic life provides a unique perspective on American history and our national mythology of self-reliance. With fresh insights and new discoveries, Prairie Fires reveals the complex woman whose classic stories grip us to this day.

February 2018