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Marcel Proust
Marcel Proust by Stephen Alcorn, 1991.

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Paine, Thomas (1995). Collected Writings. New York, Library of America.
Eric Foner, editor. Paine was the impassioned democratic voice of the Age of Revolution, and this volume brings together his best-known works - Common Sense, The American Crisis, Rights of Man, The Age of Reason - along with a selection of letters, articles, and pamphlets that emphasizes Paine's American years. "All of the germinal work of the forgotten founding Father." - Christopher Hitchens

Paley, Grace (2007). The Collected Stories
. New York, NY, Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
This collection brings together Paley's three previous volumes of stories: The Little Disturbances of Man (1959; Penguin, 1985. reprint), Enormous Changes at the Last Minute (Farrar, 1974), and Later the Same Day. Paley's inventive style and her funny, feisty, irreverent characters create vivid slices of life. Her stories often concern women coping with children alone, as in "An Interest in Life," where a woman has an affair after her husband deserts her. A continuing character, Faith, is a divorced woman with children who gets her emotional support from her women friends. In "Faith in a Tree," Faith's interests expand to include politics after she witnesses an antiwar demonstration in the park. In "A Conversation with My Father," a writer explains that even a story's terrible ending is not final--the characters could still change. This possibility of hope permeates all Paley's stories, creating a rich treasury of unexpected pleasures and revealing truths.

Palliser, D. M. (1992). The Age of Elizabeth: England under the Later Tudors 1547-1603
. London; New York, Longman.
The first up-to-date general summary of its field for a generation, it covers the social and economic history of a crucial period of change in England and Wales. The findings are not treated in isolation, but are set within their political, religious and cultural context, and the volume summarises much new research, some of it by the author, especially in the fields of urban history and population.

Pallot, James and CineBooks Inc. (1998). The Movie Guide
. New York, Berkeley Pub. Group.
This revised and updated edition of The Movie Guide (recommended as the best in the field by Barry Norman, host of the BBC's Film 94) offers in-depth synopses and reviews - extensive cast and creative credits, complete Academy Award information (including nominees as well as winners), production information such as distributor and country of origin, MPAA and star ratings, and more.

Palmer, Bryan D. (2007). James P. Cannon and the Origins of the American Revolutionary Left 1890-1928
. Urbana, University of Illinois Press.
One of the most inspiring leaders of the early United States Communist movement has at long last found a biographer worthy to recount the first four decades of his life. James P. Cannon (1890-1974) is little known today beyond activists familiar with the history of Marxist political organizations in the United States, and a handful of scholars who specialize in Communist historiography.

Even in these circles, Cannon (usually called "Jim" Cannon) is chiefly remembered for the leadership provided by his Trotskyist political current (then called the Communist League of America) to the 1934 Minneapolis Teamsters Strike, and his prosecution in 1941 under the Smith Act for allegedly conspiring with other members of his organization (after 1938 called the Socialist Workers Party) to teach the overthrow of the U.S. government. Until now, however, no author or researcher has come forward to chronicle the formative years of Cannon's story with the intricacy and erudition that it merits.

In scholarly studies fifty years ago, Cannon received some sympathetic treatment in Theodore Draper's The Roots of American Communism (1957) and American Communism and Soviet Russia (1960). But Cannon was subsequently eclipsed by the study of other Communists of his generation, such as William Z. Foster in Edward P. Johanningsmeier's Forging American Communism: The Life of William Z. Foster (1994) and James R. Barrett's William Z. Foster and the Tragedy of American Radicalism (1999); Earl Browder in James G. Ryan's Earl Browder: The Failure of American Communism (1997); Elizabeth Gurley Flynn in Helen C. Camp's Iron in Her Soul: Elizabeth Gurley Flynn and the American Left (1995); and Jay Lovestone in Ted Morgan's A Covert Life: Jay Lovestone, Communist, Anti-Communist, and Spymaster (1999).

Regarding leaders connected with the Trotskyist movement, there exists primarily a first-rate political biography of Max Shachtman by Peter Drucker, Max Shachtman and His Left: A Socialist Odyssey Through the "American Century" (1994), and several studies of C. L. R. James. For more than four decades, Cannon was represented above all through his own writings, published in the United States by Pathfinder Press, Monad Press, and the Prometheus Research Library.

With the publication of James P. Cannon and the Origins of the American Revolutionary Left 1890-1928, the state of affairs is dramatically altered. Bryan Douglas Palmer, born in 1951 in St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada, is among the most widely respected social historians in North America today. For many years he taught at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, and at present he is Canada Research Chair at Trent University as well as editor of the esteemed journal Labour / Le Travail.

Pamuk, Orhan and Erdağ M. Göknar (2001). My Name Is Red. New York, Alfred A. Knopf.
In 16th-century Istanbul, master miniaturist and illuminator of books Enishte Effendi is commissioned to illustrate a book celebrating the sultan. Soon he lies dead at the bottom of a well, and how he got there is the crux of this novel. A number of narrators give testimony to what they know about the circumstances surrounding the murder. The stories accumulate and become more detailed as the novel progresses, giving the reader not only a nontraditional murder mystery but insight into the mores and customs of the time. In addition, this is both an examination of the way figurative art is viewed within Islam and a love story that demonstrates the tricky mechanics of marriage laws. Award-winning Turkish author Pamuk (The White Castle) creatively casts the novel with colorful characters (including such entities as a tree and a gold coin) and provides a palpable sense of atmosphere of the Ottoman Empire that history and literary fans will appreciate.

Panter, Gary and Dan Nadel, et al. (2008). Gary Panter. Brooklyn, NY, PictureBox.
An intimate look at the work and life of a legendary artist. Gary Panter has been one of the most influential figures in visual culture since the mid-1970s. From his era-defining punk graphics to his cartoon icon Jimbo to his visionary design for Pee-wee's Playhouse, he has left his mark on every medium he's touched. Working in close collaboration with the artist, PictureBox has assembled the definitive volume on Panter's work from the early 1970s to the present. This monumental, slipcased set is split into two 350-page volumes. The first is a comprehensive monograph featuring over 700 images of paintings, drawings, sculptures, posters and comics, alongside essays by Robert Storr, Mike Kelley, Richard Klein, Richard Gehr, Karrie Jacobs and Byron Coley, as well a substantial commentary by the artist himself. The second volume features a selection from Panter's sketchbooks--the site of some of his most audacious work--most of which has never been published in any form.

Paoli, Letizia (2003). Mafia Brotherhoods: Organized Crime, Italian Style
. Oxford; New York, Oxford University Press.
Secrecy is one of the defining characteristics of the Italian Mafia. Wiretaps, financial records, and the rare informant occasionally reveal its inner workings, but these impressions are all too often spotty and fleeting, hampering serious scholarship on this major form of criminal activity. During her years as a consultant to the Italian government agency responsible for combating organized crime, Letizia Paoli was given unparalleled insider access to the confessions by pentiti (literally, repentants), former Mafia operatives who had turned. This mafia "hard core" came primarily from the two largest and most influential Southern Italian mafia associations, known as Cosa Nostra and 'Ndrangheta, each composed of about one hundred mafia families. The sheer volume of these confessions, numbering in the hundreds, and the detail they contained, enabled the Italian government to effectively break up the Italian mafia in one of the dramatic law enforcement successes in modern times. It is on these same documents that Paoli draws to provide a clinically accurate portrait of mafia behavior, motivations, and structure. Puncturing academic notions of a modernized Mafia, Paoli argues that to view mafia associations as bureaucracies, illegal enterprises, or an industry specializing in private protection, is overly simplistic and often inaccurate. These conceptions do not adequately describe the range of functions in which the mafia engages, nor do they hint at the mafia's limitations. The mafia, Paoli demonstrates are essentially multifunctional ritual brotherhoods focused above all on retaining and consolidating their local political power base. It is precisely this myopia that has prevented these organizations from developing the skills needed to be a successful and lasting player in the entrepreneurial world of illegal global commerce. A truly interdisciplinary work of history, politics, economics, and sociology, Mafia Brotherhoods reveals in dramatic detail the true face of one of the world's most mythologized criminal organizations.

Pappas, Lou Seibert (1994). Pesto
. San Francisco, Chronicle Books.
From the pesto recipes to the dishes using it, taste and color abound.

Pappas, Theoni (1994). The Magic of Mathematics: Discovering the Spell of Mathematics
. San Carlos, CA, Wide World Pub./Tetra.
The essays in this third volume of mathematical mini-essays by the author of The Joy of Mathematics (Wide World Pub./Tetra, 1989) and More Joy of Mathematics (Wide World Pub./Tetra, 1991) are for the general reader, requiring little mathematical background. They range broadly over mathematical themes in art, architecture, music, games, and everyday technology, encompassing history, new discoveries, applications, and recreations. Though the choice of subjects is haphazard, and each essay barely skims the surface, the book is fun to browse. Ideas are tossed out and discussed one after another with just enough details to keep things interesting. There are many illustrations and few equations. Thought-provoking yet not overwhelming, this book makes the author's pleasure in mathematics evident. - Amy Brunvand, Fort Lewis Coll. Lib., Durango, Col.

Parenti, Michael (1994). Land of Idols: Political Mythology in America
. New York, St. Martin's Press.
The prolific Parenti expands the scope of his critique of the state of the nation to "conventional American beliefs" about patriotism, religion, class, race, gender, and the distribution of wealth and power in the U.S. These beliefs, Parenti insists, "serve conservative class interests and keep us from fully pursuing our democratic interests." Unapologetically using a Marxist focus on the conflicting interests of owners and workers, Parenti examines the sources and consequences of popular "myths of political quietism," New Age thought, "superpatriotism," and "religiosity "; institutional obfuscation of class realities and imposition of "monopoly culture "; and the history and effects of racism and sexism in maintaining existing class relationships. A final chapter provides a nuanced defense of the notion of "institutional interests" intrinsic to modern capitalism against the complaints of paranoia and conspiracy-mongering Parenti anticipates, no doubt correctly, his analysis will raise.

Parenti, Michael (2008). Lockdown America: Police and Prisons in the Age of Crisis
. London; New York, Verso.
Why is criminal justice so central to American politics? Lockdown America not only documents the horrors and absurdities of militarized policing, prisons, a fortified border, and the federalization of the war on crime, it also explains the political and economic history behind the massive crackdown. This updated edition includes an afterword on the 'War on Terror', a meditation on surveillance and the specter of terrorism as they help reanimate the criminal justice attack.

Parenti, Christian (2003). The Soft Cage: Surveillance in America From Slavery to the War on Terror
. New York, Basic Books.
On a typical day, you might make a call on a cell phone, withdraw money at an ATM, visit the mall, and make a purchase with a credit card. Each of these routine transactions leaves a digital trail for government agencies and businesses to access. As cutting-edge historian and journalist Christian Parenti points out, these everyday intrusions on privacy, while harmless in themselves, are part of a relentless (and clandestine) expansion of routine surveillance in American life over the last two centuries-from controlling slaves in the old South to implementing early criminal justice and tracking immigrants. Parenti explores the role computers are playing in creating a whole new world of seemingly benign technologies-such as credit cards, website "cookies," and electronic toll collection-that have expanded this trend in the twenty-first century. The Soft Cage offers a compelling, vitally important history lesson for every American concerned about the expansion of surveillance into our public and private lives.

Pargeter, Alison (2010). The Muslim Brotherhood: The Burden of Tradition
. London; Beirut, Saqi Books.
Alison Pargeter's engaging and intelligent book makes a significant contribution to the existing literature on the Muslim Brotherhood. Her use of new sources, including interviews with key members of the Brotherhood, gives us a fresh perspective on this elusive movement, notably its shadowy international organization and the relations between its various branches. This is a welcome and highly readable addition to the growing body of work on the political Islamist movements that have shaped the contemporary Islamic world and beyond. -- Karin von Hippel, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington

Parisi, Joseph and Stephen Young (2002). Dear Editor: A History of Poetry in Letters: The First Fifty Years, 1912-1962
. New York, Norton.
Right now the Chicago-based magazine Poetry stands among the most prestigious journals of mainstream American verse, or what has been called "official verse culture." Eighty years ago, however, Poetry magazine mattered a lot more: under founding editor Harriet Monroe, Poetry helped create the careers of almost every major modernist poet, publishing, for example, Pound, Eliot, William Carlos Williams, Wallace Stevens, Marianne Moore and Carl Sandburg when their merits were still much in dispute. This big volume centers around the epistolary negotiations Monroe conducted during her 24 years at the journal, mostly the affirmations, negations, asides, outbursts, money-needs and apologies of the poets, along with some of Monroe's courteous and generous replies. Ezra Pound (Monroe's eyes and ears in England during the early years) comes off as typically engaged, irascible, and brilliantly coercive; Williams's letters sound searching and steely; Stevens's are warmly reserved and opinionated. Nor are the major modernists the whole tale. Amy Lowell's and Sara Teasdale's eventful lives occupy nearly a chapter each. Vachel Lindsay, famed for his performances, tells Monroe "I have tried several times to quit reciting "; the leftist Muriel Rukeyser writes to "explain why I resent the label" of propagandist. U.S. poet laureate Billy Collins provides a brief foreword, while Young and Parisi (the journal's current senior editor and editor-in-chief respectively) entertainingly flesh out the magazine's history. Also included are the correspondence of Monroe's successors, among them the poet Karl Shapiro (who left the journal's finances in perilous shape) and his successor Henry Rago (who helped rescue them afterward). The result is a book of more than academic interest detailing not just poets' relations with editors, but the creation and promotion of a fledgling American literature. - Publishers Weekly

Parker, Dorothy (1973). The Collected Dorothy Parker
. London, Duckworth.
Dorothy Parker, more than any of her contemporaries, captured the spirit of her age in her writing. The decadent 1920S and 1930s in New York were a time of great experiment and daring for women. For the rich, life seemed a continual party, but the excesses took their emotional toll. With a biting wit and perceptive insight, Dorothy Parker examines the social mores of her day and exposes the darkness beneath the dazzle. Her own life exemplified this duality, for a while she was one of the most talked-about women of her day, she was also known as a "masochist whose passion for unhappiness knew no bounds". As philosopher Irwin Edman said, she was "a Sappho who could combine a heartbreak with a wisecrack". Her dissection of the jazz age in poetry and prose is collected in this volume along with articles and reviews.

Parker, Richard (2005). John Kenneth Galbraith: His Life, His Politics, His Economics
. New York, Farrar, Straus, and Giroux.
John Kenneth Galbraith has led an extraordinary life. The world's most famous living economist started teaching at Harvard when he was just 25 years old and has sold seven million copies of his four dozen books. One reviewer said Galbraith wrote "history that reads like a poem." During World War II, at age 32, he was named "tsar" of consumer-price controls in the United States, and he later advised three American presidents and served as ambassador to India. Now in his 90s, Galbraith is still active and has received 50 honorary degrees. All this was accomplished by a Canadian born in a tiny Ontario farming hamlet, whose major at an obscure agricultural college wasn't even economics but animal husbandry. Such an irony is typical of Galbraith's renowned iconoclasm, writes Richard Parker in his 820-page biography John Kenneth Galbraith.

Parker shows how Galbraith's irreverent views were shaped by the Depression, which helped turn him into a passionate advocate of Keynesian economics, the philosophy that inspired FDR's New Deal. Galbraith later became one of the architects of the expansion of federal social services after World War II. Because of his influence in successive administrations, readers get a fascinating fly-on-the-wall picture of debates and intrigue inside the White House during many of the major crises of the Cold War. Galbraith frequently played crucial behind-the-scenes roles that went beyond the duties of an economist: advising President Kennedy during the Cuba missile crisis, helping Lyndon Johnson write his first speech after Kennedy was assassinated, and opposing the Vietnam War, which became his most passionate cause. He later criticized the dismantling of government programs under Ronald Reagan and seemed to love clashing with conservative economists. Parker managed to sift through a mountain of material from Galbraith's long and lively years to distill an engaging narrative that, like Galbraith's own books, is easily accessible to non-economists. - Alex Roslin

Parkman, Francis (1991). The Oregon Trail; The Conspiracy of Pontiac
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the United States: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by the Viking Press.
"From boyhood," wrote Francis Parkman, "I had a taste for the woods and the Indians." His lifelong fascination with these American subjects are brilliantly recorded in "The Oregon Trail" and "The Conspiracy of Pontiac," his two earliest works. Parkman began his travels to the northern wilderness during his student years at Harvard in the 1840s, then went west after graduation. His first and most famous book, "The Oregon Trail," is a vivid account of his adventures on the open frontier and his encounters with Plains Indians in their last era of free, nomadic life."The Conspiracy of Pontiac and the Indian War after the Conquest of Canada," Parkman's first historical work, portrays the fierce conflict that erupted along the Great Lakes in the aftermath of the Seven Years' War and chronicles the defeats in which both the eastern Indians and their forest "received their final doom."

William R. Taylor, editor. In 1846, twenty-three-year-old Bostonian Francis Parkman rode west to see the wilderness firsthand, and to experience the tribal life of the unconquered Sioux. The result was a classic American memoir, The Oregon Trail. The Conspiracy of Pontiac, his powerful account of a fierce and tragic Indian rebellion of the 1760s against European encroachment, was the first of the historis that were to establish Parkman's reputation as America's greatest narrative historian.

Parkman, Francis and David Levin (1983). France and England in North America
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the United States Distributed to the trade by the Viking Press.
David Levin, editor. This is the first of two volumes which together incorporate all seven titles of Francis Parkman's monumental account of France and England's imperial struggle for dominance on the North American continent. Pioneers of France in the New World chronicles the early and tragic settlement of the French Huguenots in Florida, then shifts to the northern reaches of the continent and follows the expeditions of Samuel de Champlain. The Jesuits in North America in the Seventeenth Century traces the zealous efforts of the Jesuits and other Roman Catholic orders to convert the Indian tribes of North America. La Salle and the Discovery of the Great West records that explorer's voyages on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. The Old Regime in Canada recounts the political struggles in Canada."Parkman's is the greatest history ever written by an American." - Washington Post

Parkman, Francis and David Levin (1983). France and England in North America
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the United States Distributed to the trade by the Viking Press.
David Levin, editor. This is the second volume in the most complete and compact edition available of Parkman's rich romantic narrative history of the struggle for control of the American continent. Count Frontenac and New France under Louis XIV, tells how France might have won her imperial struggle with England. Conflict over the developing western regions of North America erupted in a series of colonial wars. As narrated by Parkman in A Half-Century of Conflict, these American campaigns, while only part of a larger, global struggle, prepared the colonies for the American revolution. In Montcalm and Wolfe, Parkman describes the fatal confrontation of the two great French and English commanders whose climactic battle marked the end of French power in America.

Parks, Tim (1992). Italian Neighbors
. New York, Grove Weidenfeld.
More than a travel book, Italian Neighbors is a sparkling, witty, beautifully observed tale of how the most curious people and places gradually assume the familiarity of home. Italian Neighbors is a rare work that manages to be both a portrait and an invitation for everyone who has ever dreamed about Italy.

Parks, Tim (2013). Italian Ways: On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo
. New York, W.W. Norton & Company.
Parks begins as any traveler might: "A train is a train is a train, isn’t it?" But soon he turns his novelist’s eye to the details, and as he journeys through majestic Milano Centrale station or on the newest high-speed rail line, he delivers a uniquely insightful portrait of Italy. Through memorable encounters with ordinary Italians -- conductors and ticket collectors, priests and prostitutes, scholars and lovers, gypsies and immigrants -- Parks captures what makes Italian life distinctive: an obsession with speed but an acceptance of slower, older ways; a blind eye toward brutal architecture amid grand monuments; and an undying love of a good argument and the perfect cappuccino.

Parks, Tim (2005). Medici Money: Banking, Metaphysics, and Art in Fifteenth-Century Florence
. New York, W.W. Norton & Company.
The Medici are famous as the rulers of Florence at the high point of the Renaissance. Their power derived from the family bank, and this book tells the fascinating, frequently bloody story of the family and the dramatic development and collapse of their bank (from Cosimo who took it over in 1419 to his grandson Lorenzo the Magnificent who presided over its precipitous decline). The Medici faced two apparently insuperable problems: how did a banker deal with the fact that the Church regarded interest as a sin and had made it illegal? How in a small republic like Florence could he avoid having his wealth taken away by taxation? But the bank became indispensable to the Church. And the family completely subverted Florence's claims to being democratic. They ran the city. Medici Money explores a crucial moment in the passage from the Middle Ages to the Modern world, a moment when our own attitudes to money and morals were being formed. To read this book is to understand how much the Renaissance has to tell us about our own world.

Parlett, David Sidney (2004). The A-Z of Card Games
. New York, Oxford University Press.
This fascinating dictionary tells you how to play almost any card game popular in the Western world. Besides classics like Bridge and Poker, it also includes famous historical games, popular folk games, and even Tarot games. With hundreds of games to explore and enjoy, David Parlett's book will be invaluable to anyone planning a card evening with friends. Now in a fully revised and updated second edition, its broad coverage includes all the popular and classic games: Bridge, Canasta, Hearts, Poker, Rummy, and Whist. Popular family and party games such as Newmarket, Oh Hell!, and Old Maid also appear, alongside a host of unusual and intriguingly-titled games, for example, Cucumber, Go Boom, I Doubt It, Phat, Spinado, Spite and Malice, and many more. A new layout, with historical information in boxes, and fun graphics to show number of players/packs at a glance make the games even easier to learn and play, while web links added in the text and a Useful Web site section in appendix offer further added value. Written by the UK's leading card game expert, this is truly indispensable for anyone with a yen for cards.

Parmar, Inderjeet (2012). Foundations of the American Century: The Ford, Carnegie, and Rockefeller Foundations in the Rise of American Power
. New York, Columbia University Press.
Inderjeet Parmar reveals the complex interrelations, shared mindsets, and collaborative efforts of influential public and private organizations in the building of American hegemony. Focusing on the involvement of the Ford, Rockefeller, and Carnegie foundations in U.S. foreign affairs, Parmar traces the transformation of America from an "isolationist" nation into the world's only superpower, all in the name of benevolent stewardship.

Parr, Martin and Gerry Badger (2004). The Photobook: A History
. London, Phaidon.
From Street Life in London to Hiroshima, from The Royal Mummies to Perspective of Nudes and The Sweet Flypaper of Life, photobooks encompass a tremendous diversity of subjects and styles. While some of these illustrated volumes are famous (Eadweard Muybridge's Animal Locomotion, Robert Frank's The Americans), many others are known only to specialists. The Photobook: A History offers an engrossing survey of this art form, beginning with early experiments in photography in mid-19yh-century England and ending with raucous Japanese photo-diaries of the 1990s. The scope of this handsomely designed book - the first of two volumes - is so broad that only a few pages of each photobook could be illustrated, and some of the 750 color and black-and-white reproductions are quite small. But the incisive commentary by British photographer Martin Parr and photo critic Gerry Badger opens up new worlds of visual information. The authors provide essential grounding, not only in the history of photography, but also in the artistic and social movements that influenced the look and content of photobooks.

In the 19th century, the object was to collect and to classify, whether the subject was a foreign landscape, a war, the surface of the moon or the manufacture of bread. Conversely, 20th-century photobooks are often frankly subjective, drawing on movements ranging from surrealism to the Beats. Yet a quasi-scientific approach could result in poignant imagery (as in Facies Dolorosa, a study of the faces of seriously ill people), and artistic subjectivity could yield bitter truths (Helen Levitt's A Way of Seeing, images of poor children in New York). Describing photobooks of the polemical 1930s as "the great persuaders," Parr and Badger remark that the best documentary work demonstrates an awareness of the ambiguities and contradictions inherent in the medium. Although we tend to think of propaganda solely as the product of totalitarian regimes (see "Long Live the Bright Instruction," a Chinese tract featuring unnervingly happy workers), the authors remind us that photobooks celebrating the American way of life often naively ignored the complex socio-political forces that underlie a sentimental or cheerful scene. The final chapter, devoted to postwar Japanese photobooks, vividly illuminates the cocktail of hedonism, rage and despair that makes these volumes extraordinary visual documents.

Paschen, Elise, Rebekah Presson Mosby, et al. (2001). Poetry Speaks: Hear Great Poets Read Their Work from Tennyson to Plath
. Naperville, Ill., Sourcebooks MediaFusion.
This is the definitive anthology to date of canonical poets reading short selections of their own work. Though some of the audio here has been widely available for decades, it is certainly exciting to hear Tennyson, Browning, Yeats, Eliot and Co. reading their work and to read easily along in the provided text indeed, a huge first printing of 100,000 is riding on that excitement. Former Poetry Society of America executive director Paschen and National Public Radio reporter Mosby have assembled a very high-wattage team of living poets to write short essays on the historic ones whose voices we hear. The real standouts are about the less familiar of the latter: Rita Dove on the superb modernist Melvin B. Tolson; Forrest Gander on the magisterial Laura (Riding) Jackson; Michael Palmer on San Francisco Renaissance man Robert Duncan; Elizabeth Alexander on Etheridge Knight. T0 hear the distinctive accents and pauses of these poets 42 here in all, including the likes of Gertrude Stein and Robert Lowell remains truly wonderful. Paschen and Mosby's biographical notes can veer into shorthand platitude, but the initiated will be curious as to how poets such as Jorie Graham and Charles Bernstein approach Elizabeth Bishop and Ezra Pound respectively (though the essays are by design cursory). At the very least, those getting their first dose of poetry will find lots of names for further investigation. Charles Osgood introduces each poet's specific selections on the discs, which are complemented by further poems from each poet in the text. All told, while there will be quibbles about missing poets, this set evinces care, and will displace its patchwork of rivals for the foreseeable future.

Pashukanis, Evgeni Bronislavovich (2002). The General Theory of Law and Marxism
. New Brunswick, N.J., Transaction Publishers.
E. B. Pashukanis was the most significant contemporary to develop a fresh, new Marxist perspective in post-revolutionary Russia. In 1924 he wrote what is probably his most influential work, The General Theory of Law and Marxism. In the second edition, 1926, he stated that this work was not to be seen as a final product but more for "self-clarification" in hopes of adding "stimulus and material for further discussion." A third edition was printed in 1927.

Pashukanis's "commodity-exchange" theory of law spearheaded a perspective that traced the form of law, not to class interests, but to capital logic itself. Until his death, he continued to argue for the ideal of the withering away of the state, law, and the juridic subject. He eventually arrived at a position contrary to Stalin's who, at that time, was attempting to consolidate and strengthen the state apparatus under the name of the dictatorship of the proletariat. Inevitably, Pashukanis was branded an enemy of the revolution in January 1937. His works were subsequently removed from soviet libraries. In 1954, Pashukanis was "rehabilitated" by the Soviets and restored to an acceptable position in the historical development of marxist law.

In Europe and North America, a number of legal theorists only rediscovered Pashukanis's work in the late 1970s. They subjected it to careful critical analysis, and realized that he offered an alternative to the traditional Marxist interpretations, which saw law simply and purely as tied to class interests of domination. By the mid-1980s the instrumental Marxist perspective in vogue in Marxist sociology, criminology, politics, and economics gave way, to a significant extent due to Pashukanis's insights, to a more structural Marxist accounting of the relationship of law to economics and other social spheres.

In his new introduction, Dragan Milovanovic discusses the life of Pashukanis, Marx and the commodity-exchange theory of law, and the historical lessons of Pashukanis's work. This book will be of interest to sociologists, criminologists, and political scientists interested in issues of law and Marxism.

Evgeny Bronislavovich Pashukanis (1891-1937) is a critical figure in Russian thought who has stimulated much Marxist analysis of law. Specializing in law and political economy at the University of Munich prior to the Russian Revolution of 1917, Pashukanis was to become the pre-eminent theorist in Russia in the 1920s until his demise in the 1930s.

Dragan Milovanovic is professor of criminal justice at Northeastern Illinois University. He has written several books and numerous articles on critical criminology and law. He is editor of the International Journal for the Semiotics of Law.

Pasley, Malcolm (1978). Nietzsche, Imagery and Thought: A Collection of Essays
. London, Methuen.
Papers focusing on Nietzsche's relation of poetic imagery to his arguments. Includes contributions by Peter Putz, "Nietzsche: Art and Intellectual Inquiry;" Mary Warnock, "Nietzsche's Conception of Truth;" W. D. Williams "Nietzsche's Masks;" F. D. Luke, "Nietzsche and the Imagery of Height;" Malcolm Pasley, "Nietzsche's Use of Medical Term" T. J. Reed, "Nietzsche's Animals: Idea, Image and Influence;" and Patrick Bridgwater, "English Writers and Nietzsche."

Patchen, Kenneth (1957). Selected Poems
. New York, New Directions Publishing Corporation.

Paul, Jim (1997). Medieval in La: A Fiction
. San Diego, Calif., Harcourt Brace.
Even in the sprawling modern megalopolis of contemporary Los Angeles (or perhaps especially there), people somehow manage to live their daily lives in stubborn denial of the most profound, transforming revolutions in human thought since the Middle Ages. So proposes the thoughtful narrator of this entertaining and whimsical meditation that convincingly juxtaposes the events of a weekend visit to L.A. with key developments in Western thought. People are still, at heart, "pre-Copernican," living "mostly in the old realm, at the center of our own universe, finding our significance, manifesting our intentions." Jim, a medievalist by profession, spills tomato juice in his lap on his flight to L.A. from San Francisco. The mishap sends him spinning into contemplation of a dazzlingly varied assortment of personalities and phenomena. From Thomas Aquinas to Bob Fosse, Galileo to John Cage, Moses and Aaron to Jessica Lange, Brecht to King Kong, Jim takes the reader on a lively philosophical ramble as he and his significant other, Les, rejoin old friends for a fresh look at L.A. Nonfiction writer Paul, a medievalist himself (Catapult: Harry and I Build a Siege Weapon; What's Called Love: A Real Romance) strikes a winning balance of humor and erudition in his first novel. He effectively packages sophisticated insights in a breezy, seemingly casual narrative that could not be less pedantic.

Paxton, Robert O. (2004). The Anatomy of Fascism
. New York, Alfred A. Knopf.
A scholar of Vichy France, Paxton focuses here on the literature about fascism. The term is used with abandon in contemporary political discourse, reflecting scholarly disagreement about how to define it. His historical source material predominantly emanates from Mussolini in Italy and Hitler in Germany, an obvious but necessary observation since the "fascist" status of other authoritarian regimes is contentious. Paxton does integrate biographies of the two ur-fascists into his dissection, but he comments frequently that a researcher's fixation on the leader obscures rather than clarifies the rise of his party, as does a propensity to focus on the party's ideology instead of its actions, and he follows the significantly different trajectories of radicalism taken by the Fascists and the Nazis. Formulating a five-stage life cycle of fascism from birth in "mobilizing passions" provoked by World War I to its destructiveness in power, Paxton wants his intricate but readable work to "rescue the concept [of fascism] for meaningful use," a laudable goal largely achieved.

Peellaert, Guy, Pierre Bartier, et al. (2013). The Adventures of Jodelle
. Seattle, WA, Fantagraphics Books.
By creating The Adventures of Jodelle, a deluxe comics album that wore its revolutionary Pop sensibility on its sleeve, Guy Peellaert obliterated the conventions of what had up to that point been a minor, childish medium. Ironically appropriating the face and body of the teen idol Sylvie Vartan, he fashioned a new kind of heroine, a sensual, parodically beautiful spy. For his setting he chose a defiantly anachronistic Roman Empire, into which irrupted the most flamboyant symbols of a conquering America, the originator of all fantasies.

Every page of this fascinating saga features a flood of topical references and in-jokes, operating playfully on the border that separated so-called "high" and "low" cultures. Peellaert drew from the most exciting stimuli of his time, subjecting them to his powerful formal innovations: Pop Art, extreme fashions, strident advertising, shock graphics, and cinematic techniques all collided in virtuoso compositions of extreme sophistication, whose inspirations ranged from classical paintings to Gottlieb pinball machines.

Peggy Guggenheim Collection., Lucy Flint-Gohlke, et al. (1986). Handbook, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection
. New York, Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation.
Art collection.

Pekar, Harvey (1991). The New American Splendor Anthology
. New York, Four Walls Eight Windows.
SEE Harvey Pekar, file clerk extraordinaire, wrestle with mortality.
DREAM with Harvey as he plots to re-sell his used books and records for absurdly inflated prices.
FEAR for your sanity as Harvey takes you deep into the bowels of a Cleveland veteran's hospital.
RAGE with Harvey at the aggression and general obtuseness of people around him. He's a reasonable guy.

American Splendor: the series that sparked a revolution in comics, that brought graphic novels to the attention of post-adolescent readers everywhere. All stories written by Harvey Pekar. With drawings by Chester Brown, Greg Budgett, R. Crumb, Gary Dumm, William Fogg, Drew Friedman, Rebecca Huntington, Paul Mavrides, Val Mayerik, Alan Moore, Spain Rodriguez, Gerry Shamray, Carole Sobocinski, Frank Stack, J.R. Stats, Colin Upton, Ed Wesolowski, Jim Woodring, Joe Zabel, and Mark Zingarelli.

The best of Harvey Pekar, from his American Splendor series and other comics - including never-before-seen material.

Pekar, Harvey, Kevin Brown, et al. (2003). American Splendor: The Life and Times of Harvey Pekar: Stories
. New York, Ballantine Books.
American Splendor is the world's first literary comic book. Cleveland native Harvey Pekar is a true American original. A V.A. hospital file clerk and comic book writer, Harvey chronicles the ordinary and mundane in stories both funny and touching. His dead-on eye for the frustrations and minutiae of the workaday world mix in a delicate balance with his insight into personal relationships. Pekar has been compared to Dreiser, Dostoevsky, and Lenny Bruce. But he is truly more than all of them. He is himself.

Pekar, Harvey, Gary Dumm, et al. (2008). Students for a Democratic Society: A Graphic History
. New York, Hill and Wang.
In 1962 at a United Auto Workers' camp in Michigan, Students for a Democratic Society held its historic convention and prepared the famous Port Huron Statement, drafted by Tom Hayden. This statement, criticizing the U.S. government's failure to pursue international peace or address domestic inequality, became the organization's manifesto. Its last convention was held in 1969 in Chicago, where, collapsing under the weight of its notoriety and popularity, it shattered into myriad factions. Through brilliant art and they were-there dialogue, famed graphic novelist Harvey Pekar, gifted artist Gary Dumm, and renowned historian Paul Buhle illustrate the tumultuous decade that first defined and then was defined by the men and women who gathered under the SDS banner. Students for a Democratic Society: A Graphic History captures the idealism and activism that drove a generation of young Americans to believe that even one person's actions can help transform the world.

Pelevin, Viktor (1998). Omon Ra
. New York, New Directions.
A vigorous satire on the Soviet space program is combined with a thoughtful dramatization of the mixed human impulses to explore, conquer, and transcend in this memorable short novel by the author of The Yellow Arrow. Pelvin's narrator and protagonist, born Omon Krivomazov, grows up in a nondescript village, ignored by his drunken father and sustained by a rapturous ''dream of the sky'' that fills his being with the romance of celestial navigation. Omon--who adopts as his surname that of the Egyptian god of the sun--progresses with initially increasing enthusiasm, then gathering apprehension, through the stages of Soviet space training, the trials of Flying School, and the revelations of ''Rocket Camp'' with his best pal Mitiok, as the two eagerly prepare for a planned lunar flight. But what of those stories about space cadets who must have their legs amputated to fit inside their vessels' cockpits? Omon meets the dog Laika (''the first Soviet cosmonaut'') and hears hilariously grim stories of the awful lengths to which humans will go to survive- -like the Popadyas, father and son, who wear bulletproof vests and suit up as bears for the pleasure of hunting parties (the participation of Henry Kissinger in this subplot marks one of Pelevin's rare descents into theme-driven overstatement). In Omon, Pelevin creates a bright, observant central character who's appropriately fascinated by the way things work. Minor characters are sketchier, though the blind, wheelchair-bound Political Instructor Colonel Urchagin, who smilingly urges Omon and his comrades to make the ultimate sacrifice, will linger in the reader's memory--as will the sobering lesson imparted to Omon: ''. . . becoming a heavenly body is not much different from serving a life sentence in a prison carriage that travels round and round a circular railway line without ever stopping.'' This haunting tragicomedy was nominated for the 1993 Russian Booker Prize (which Pelevin won for a collection of short stories). It's the work of an exciting new talent, and one hopes his other fiction will soon be in English translation as well.

Pelevin, Viktor and Andrew Bromfield (1998). The Life of Insects: A Novel
. New York, Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
Victor Pelevin has the sort of unbridled comedic imagination that can make most writers seem insipid by comparison. Born in 1962, the Russian writer has already published three story collections as well as a splendidly funny take on the Soviet space program, Omon Ra. From time to time his effects lurch out of control, yet Pelevin's manic level of invention tends to carry us along until he regains his equipoise. Certainly this is the case with The Life of Insects. This time, Pelevin sets his story in a sleazy Crimean resort town, where his characters eat, drink, make merry, make love, and turn into insects. This is no soft-focus allegory: the author is superbly specific about his entomological creations."Arthur and Arnold had turned into small mosquitoes," he writes, "of that miserable hue of gray familiar from prerevolutionary village huts, a color that in its time had reduced many a Russian poet to tears." The sex scenes are a mite (as it were) much, though nothing more gruesome than you'd see in your average PBS documentary. Still, Pelevin's best trick is to makes his six-legged protagonists appear all too human. A self-doubting cicada, for example, finds himself envying the relative ease of an ant's life: "But he never dwelt on such comparisons, aware that once he stopped and began to compare himself with others, it would begin to seem that he had already achieved a great deal, and he would lose the sense of resentment toward life that was essential to continue his struggle." The Life of Insects is a black-comic Metamorphosis for the 1990s, minus Kafka's gravity and with an extra dose of Slavic neurosis. - William Davies

Pelevin, Viktor and Andrew Bromfield (2000). Buddha's Little Finger
. New York, Viking.
The ambitious, time-traveling scenario of Russian writer Pelevin's third novel finds the aptly named poet Pyotr Void tumbling between two distinct nightmares. In the first he is serving as commissar to the legendary Bolshevik commander, Chapaev, during the 1919 Russian Civil War. Pyotr pines for Chapaev's machine gunner, Anna, entertains officers who come to pinch cocaine (acquired by an accident of fate) on the pretext of discussing the nature of the intelligentsia, and feels horribly disjointed all the while. Then, Pyotr wakes up in a present-day mental hospital in Moscow distinctly labeled "schizophrenic." He observes his doctors and roommates (including an effeminate man who has assumed the identity of "Maria") until he almost feels comfortable, only to be pumped full of sedatives and returned to the year 1919. The two settings provide Pelevin, who won Russia's "Little Booker" prize for his collection The Blue Lantern, with plenty of room to obsess about political changes and social realities in Russia (at one point, Maria announces, "That's always the way with Russia. When you see it from afar, it's so beautiful it's enough to make you cry, but when you take a closer look, you just want to puke"). Just when the plot seems to fragment into an irretrievable mess, Pelevin stitches things up rather nicely with some loosely applied Buddhist principles. Bromfield's translation is smooth, the prose crisp, lively and humorous as well as richly philosophical. - Publishers Weekly

Penn, Irving, Maria Morris Hambourg, et al. (2017). Irving Penn: Centennial.
. New York; London, Yale University Press.
Celebrating the centennial of Irving Penn's birth, this volume spans the entirety of his groundbreaking career. The introduction situates his work in the context of the various artistic, social, and political environments and events that affected the content of his photographs. The essays acquaint readers with Penn's primary subjects and campaigns, including early documentary scenes and imagery; portraits; fashion; female nudes; people of Peru, Dahomey (Benin), New Guinea, and Morocco; still lifes; and more.

Penrose, Roland (1981). Picasso, His Life and Work
. Berkeley, University of California Press.
"Intimate, yet objective; comprehensive, yet enthralling; this biography of the greatest artists of our century will rank with Vasari in the annals of European painting." - Sir Herbert Read

Pepin, Jacques and Tom Hopkins (2007). Chez Jacques: Traditions and Rituals of a Cook
. New York, Stewart, Tabori & Chang.
Of the 20-plus cookbooks Jacques Pepin has written, Chez Jacques is his most personal and engaging. Now starring in his tenth PBS series, Pepin ranks among America's most beloved cooking teachers, and this book shows us why.

The book's 100 recipes for soups and appetizers, main courses, side dishes, and desserts are Pepins own favorites among the thousands he has created over a lifetime of cooking. Using readily available ingredients and relying upon familiar techniques, these are the dishes he makes when preparing food at his Connecticut home. But Chez Jacques is more than a collection of well-liked recipes; it's also a captivating sentimental journey. Each dish is introduced by a recollection - of picking dandelion greens for a spring salad, of buying fresh eggs from the local farmer - that invites readers to share in the traditions and rituals of Pepins most intimate circle.

This treasury of great food, lore, and memory is exquisitely illustrated with a sampling of Pepin's paintings, as well as hundreds of color photographs of the finished dishes and of Pepin in all his natural habitats - pitching boules with a group of friends, savoring a glass of chilled rose in the afternoon sun, painting landscapes, designing menus, and, of course, working in his kitchen.

Pepper, Art and Laurie Pepper (2000). Straight Life: The Story of Art Pepper
. Edinburgh, Mojo Books.
Art Pepper (1925–1982) was called the greatest alto saxophonist of the post-Charlie Parker generation. But his autobiography, Straight Life, is much more than a jazz book--it is one of the most explosive, yet one of the most lyrical, of all autobiographies. This edition is updated with an extensive afterword by Laurie Pepper covering Art Pepper's last years, and a complete and up-to-date discography by Todd Selbert

Perec, Georges (1987). Life: A User's Manual
. Boston, D.R. Godine.
Though Perec (1936-1982) is "experimental" in the tradition of Joyce and Nabokov, his work is rich with word games and acrostics that reveal the secret life of language this euphoric novel, winner of the Prix Medicis, will enchant a range of readers. The serial storytelling within the framework narrative is as beguiling and inexhaustible as Scheherazade's. The facade is removed from a Parisian apartment house on the Rue Simon-Crubellier, permitting us to spy on its tenants in the grid of rooms and to examine their pictures and bibelots. Books, letters, clippings and announcements add to the textual welter, all interlocking like pieces of a puzzle, the novel's chief metaphor. Tales told in stylishly reinvented genres, romance, detection, adventure, constitute what is experienced, read about or dreamed up by an array of restaurateurs, mediums, cyclists, antique dealers and pious widows. A quester for the Nile tries to rescue a beautiful German girl from a harem. A judge's wife, whose sexually thrilling thefts result in a sentence of hard labor, ends as a bag lady on a park bench. Meanwhile a team of eccentric artists, Bartlebooth, Winckler and Valene, enact the creative process, painting watercolor seascapes, cutting them apart with a jigsaw and reassembling them as smoothly as "an oily sea closing over a drowning man." The image of a splendidly wrought table, its interior fretted by patient worms, succinctly and differently restates the process.

Perec, Georges (2010). Things: A Story of the Sixties / A Man Asleep
. Boston, D. Godine.
Two intriguing and poignant novellas, Perec's first published works, show him forging the iconoclastic literary style that fully emerges in his magisterial Life: A User's Manual - the technique of crowding fictional space with an almost rococo wealth of detail and decor. Things (1965) coolly pinpoints the yearnings and malaise of young Jerome and Sylvie, market researchers who analyze their interviewees' needs just as Perec inventories their own. Media slogans and trendy magazines dictate the luxuries they would buy if they had money. To escape the consumerist mythology, they move to Sfax, a drab desert outpost in Tunisia. But although they locate a beautiful villa, their dream eludes them. The narrative slips into future tense: "They will pine for Paris," go back and recall Sfax with nostalgia. In A Man Asleep (the basis of a 1973 award-winning film), an introspective graduate school dropout denies the pressures of time, first by examining each instant as he lies in bed, then by drifting through Paris streets in an imitation of sleep's shadowy oblivion. Despite his characters' trapped, "decelerating" lives, Perec's fertile imagination is fresh and surprising.

Perec, Georges (1988). W, or, The Memory of Childhood
. Boston, D.R. Godine.
Exploring a single letter was one among many devices used by Perec (Life: A User's Manual), known for his verbal feats. W (pronounced in French double-ve ) suggests the double sorrow (the poetic Weh in German) arising from the parallel and interlaced narratives of this quasi-autobiographical novel. Born in Paris of Jewish emigre parents who were killed when he was a child, Perec actually had "no childhood memories," and so invented a personal past based on photographs and the testimony of relatives. The novel alternates a straightforward account of childhood with an imagined journey to a fiendish utopia, i.e., Nazi Germany, whose criminal ideal of Olympic Sport controls every act. Boys train as athletes, while girls become handmaids and, in the big playoff, the champions' rape victims. The regime's mirror-image is found in the Nazi's organized death camps. Common threads link the novel's two narratives. Perec's schooldays evoke the athletes' horrifying education. "W" is the name of the Olympic police state; "W" recurs in the herringbone pattern of Perec's skis, and when repeated and re-aligned forms a Star of David. The writer's search for identity within a historic nightmare provides a moving and important memoir.

Perelman, S. J. (2000). Most of the Most of S.J. Perelman
. New York, Modern Library.
This book includes many of the greatest hits from 1930 to 1958--available only in this edition--by the devastatingly witty Perelman, the leading figure of The New Yorker magazine's golden age of humor and one of the most popular American humorists ever. In these hilarious pieces, the charmingly cranky Perelman turns his scathing attention to books, movies, New York socialites, the newspaper business, country life, travel, Hollywood, the publishing industry, and, last but not least, himself. His self-portrait: "Under a forehead roughly comparable to . . . Piltdown Man are visible a pair of tiny pig eyes, lit up alternately by greed and concupiscence. . . . Before they made S. J. Perelman, they broke the mold." Sophisticated and supremely mischievous, Perelman is an acrobat of language who turns a phrase and then, before the reader has time to finish admiring his agility, turns it again.

Peres, Daniel (2007). Details Men's Style Manual: The Ultimate Guide for Making Your Clothes Work for You
. New York, Gotham Books.
A guide to men's fashion offers advice for such topics as selecting formal wear, outerwear, and accessories, and includes fashion and style tips by celebrities, including Giorgio Armani and Sean Combs.

Perkins, David (1976). A History of Modern Poetry: From the 1890s to the High Modernist Mode
. Cambridge, Mass., Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
David Perkins's "History of Modern Poetry" gives the reader the essentials of the modernist movement, from its beginnings as a reaction against the outworn Romantic era to the poetry of Ashbery, Ammons, and Merrill in our own age. Brevity is a virtue here: Perkins states the essentials of a poet's life only and so escapes the common error of overinterpretation which most critics commit. The series also pays attention to minor poets who do not rank highly today and past movements in journals and anthology editing so as to provide us with a complete picture of what the past century of poetry has consisted.

Perkins, John (2007). The Secret History of the American Empire: Economic Hit Men, Jackals, and the Truth About Global Corruption
. New York, NY, Plume.
A sweeping, bold assault on the tyranny of corporate globalization, full of drama and adventure, with devastating stories of greed run wild. But Perkins is undaunted, and offers imaginative ideas for a different world.

Perkins, Kenneth J. (2004). A History of Modern Tunisia
. New York, Cambridge University Press.
Perkins' book traces the history of Tunisia from the mid-nineteenth century to the present. Initially he examines the years of French colonial rule from 1881 to 1956, when the Tunisians achieved independence. He then describes the subsequent process of state-building, including the design of political and economic structures and the promotion of a social and cultural agenda. In conclusion, he reviews the years since 1987, when a new regime came to power. Perkins' introduction is designed for students, and those looking for a comprehensive and informed account of the region.

Perkins, Useni Eugene (1987). Explosion of Chicago Black Street Gangs: 1900 to Present
. Chicago, Third World Press.
Traces the evolution of Chicago's black street gangs, identifying those factors that have made many of them the violent gangs they are today. The author has worked with and observed black street gangs for over twenty-five years.

Perloff, Marjorie (1990). Poetic License: Essays on Modernist and Postmodernist Lyric
. Evanston, Ill., Northwestern University Press.
No one commands the field of 20th century poetry as Perloff does. She is clearly our finest close reader of poetry.

Perrins, Christopher M. and Alex L. A. Middleton (1985). Encyclopedia of Birds
. New York, N.Y., Facts on File.
Like Bruce Campbell and Elizabeth Lack's A Dictionary of Birds, The Encyclopedia of Birds is superbly written, edited, and illustrated. Many of the same authors have written on the same subjects in both books. An important difference is that the Dictionary is arranged alphabetically, while the Encyclopedia is organized by taxonomic order. The Encyclopedia contains an index, but due to the sometimes confusing classification of birds, its format may still make it difficult to use. In addition, the Dictionary is more detailed and extensive, and includes references at the end of long definitions. But the Encyclopedia 's large color photographs, which are often strikingly beautiful, will be useful to both amateurs and professionals. While the Dictionary is a necessity for most academic libraries, both books are highly recommended to public libraries with large reference collections. Nicholas J. Volkman, Point Reyes Bird Observatory, Stinson Beach, Cal. - Library Journal

Peters, Robert (1996). Hunting the Snark: American Poetry at Century's End: Classifications and Commentary
. Greensboro, NC, Avisson Press.
American poetry.

Peterson, Bryan (2004). Understanding Exposure: How to Shoot Great Photographs with a Film or Digital Camera
. New York, Amphoto Books.
For serious amateur photographers who already shoot perfectly focused, accurately exposed images but want to be more creative with a camera, here's the book to consult. More than seventy techniques, both popular and less-familiar approaches, are covered in detail, including advanced exposure, bounced flash and candlelight, infrared, multiple images, soft-focus effects, unusual vantage points, zooming, and other carefully chosen ways to enhance photographs. The A-Z format make sit easy for readers to find a specific technique, and each one is explained in jargon-free language.

Peterson, Ivars (1998). The Mathematical Tourist: New and Updated Snapshots of Modern Mathematics
. New York, W.H. Freeman.
In the first edition of The Mathematical Tourist, renowned science journalist Ivars Peterson took readers on an unforgettable tour through the sometimes bizarre, but always fascinating, landscape of modern mathematics. Now the journey continues in a new, updated edition that includes all the latest information on mathematical proofs, fractals, prime numbers, and chaos. Blazing a trail through rows of austere symbols and dense lines of formulae, Peterson explores the central ideas behind the work of professional mathematicians-- how and where their pieces of the mathematical puzzle fit in, the sources of their ideas, their fountains of inspiration, and the images that carry them from one discovery to another.

Peterson, Merrill D. (1996). Thomas Jefferson and the New Nation: A Biography
. New York, Oxford University Press.
The definitive life of Jefferson in one volume, this biography relates Jefferson's private life and thought to his prominent public position and reveals the rich complexity of his development. As Peterson explores the dominant themes guiding Jefferson's career--democracy, nationality, and enlightenment--and Jefferson's powerful role in shaping America, he simultaneously tells the story of nation coming into being.

Pettigrew, Jane; Bruce Richardson (2008). The New Tea Companion
. Perryville, Kentucky, Benjamin Press.
London's Jane Pettigrew has joined American tea writer Bruce Richardson in creating the updated guide to teas throughout the world. Beautifully illustrated, this 2008 edition gives detailed information and brewing instructions for over 120 teas from every major tea producing region. Chapters on the newest information about tea and health, tea production, tea blending and tea hospitality are included. This book is a valuable up-to-date addition to libraries of both tea novices and professionals.

Phaidon (1999). The 20th-Century Art Book
. London, Phaidon Press.
More than any other era, the 20th Century offers us an unrivalled galaxy of styles and approaches to art. The last ten decades have been a fast-moving epoch of inventions, discoveries and political upheavals. As a result, the art scene has also radically changed: it has become more than international, artists have experimented with new media including oil paint, collage, sculpture, ready-made objects, installation, and video. The status of women artists has grown immeasurably. Phaidon's The 20th Century Art Book offers an A to Z guide to these innovative artists with 500 full-page color plates presenting celebrated works alongside future classics. each image is accompanied by an incisive text, shedding light on the work and its creator. The alphabetical arrangement presents thought-provoking juxtapositions, while cross-references lead the reader through the century by subject matter, style or medium. Full glossaries of terms, artistic movements, museums and galleries are included, creating a self-contained volume which presents a whole new way of looking at 20th Century art. The 20th Century Art Book is a benchmark publication that will serve as the principle art reference work for decades to come.

Phelps, Donald (1969). Covering Ground: Essays for Now
. New York, Croton Press.
Critical essays on art, film, politics, and popular culture.

Phelps, Donald (2001). Reading the Funnies: Essays on Comic Strips
. Seattle, WA, Fantagraphics Books.
Donald Phelps provides essays on popular classics, such as Chester Gould's Dick Tracy, E.C. Segar's Thimble Theatre (which produced Popeye), and Frank King's Gasoline Alley. His keen eye discerns the sublime qualities of this most American art form with wit and refreshing candor. Reading the Funnies offers an elegant and eloquent look into this fascinating slice of American popular culture.

Phillips, Kevin P. (2004). American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush
. New York, N.Y., Penguin Books.
Paraphrasing a passage from Machiavelli's The Prince, Kevin Phillips writes, "a ruler can ignore the mob and devote himself to the interests of the ruling class, gulling the inert majority who constitute the ruled." He then says, "Borgia references aside, 21st-century American readers of The Prince may feel that they have stumbled on a thinly disguised Bush White House political memo." These pointed words would sting regardless of who uttered them, but coming from Phillips, a former Republican strategist, they have an added piquancy. In American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush, Phillips traces the rise of the Bush family from investment banking elites to political power brokers, using their Ivy League network, vast wealth, and questionable political maneuvering to obtain the White House and consequently, shake the foundation of constitutional American democracy. Citing the Bush family mainstays of finance, energy (oil), the military industrial complex, and national security and intelligence (the CIA), Phillips uses copious examples to show the dangerous alliance between the Bushes' business interests (huge corporations such as Enron and Haliburton) and the formation of national policy. No other family, Phillips says, that has fulfilled its presidential aspirations has been so involved in the ascendancy of the arms industry and of the 21st-century American imperium--often at the expense of regional and world peace and for their personal gain.

It is hard to tell what offends Phillips the most: the Bushes' systematic deceit and secrecy, their shady business dealings, their cronyism, or their family philosophy that privileges the very wealthy and utterly dismisses all the rest. It is clearly all of these things combined. But at the top of Phillips' list is the dynastic nature of their family power, for it is that concentration of power and influence that strikes at the heart of our democracy. Past administrations have transgressed, albeit not so egregiously, and other political families have had dynastic ambitions. But none have succeeded as thoroughly as the Bushes. Jefferson and Madison would be horrified, and according to Phillips, we should be too. - Silvana Tropea

Phillips, Marjorie (1970). Duncan Phillips and His Collection
. Boston, Little.
Born in Pittsburgh in 1886, Duncan Phillips was the grandson of James Laughlin, a banker and co-founder of the Jones and Laughlin Steel Company. Duncan and his family moved to Washington, D.C. in 1895. In 1918, after the untimely deaths of his father and brother, Duncan Phillips and his mother established The Phillips Memorial Gallery. It opened to the public three years later after completion of a skylit room over the north wing of the family's 1897 Georgian Revival home.

Duncan Phillips went on to create an intimate and comfortable setting in which to view some of the world's finest paintings.

The collection continued to grow, and in 1930 the Phillips family relocated and officially turned their house into a museum. By opening the museum in the family home designed by Hornblower and Marshall, Duncan Phillips conceived of his museum "as a memorial, a beneficent force in the community where I live, a joy-giving, life-enhancing influence, assisting people to see beautifully as true artists see."

Duncan Phillips, with his wife Marjorie, collected over a period of 50 years more than 2,000 works of art, creating one of the finest small museums in the world. Phillips' intention was to present a museum of modern art and its sources in a domestic setting where he believed "people would be inclined to return once they have found it and to linger as long as they can for art's special sort of pleasure."

Throughout his lifetime, Duncan Phillips had the prescience and courage to collect works by many artists who were not yet fully recognized, among them Georgia O'Keeffe, Arthur Dove, Milton Avery, and Pierre Bonnard. Mid-century artists such as Jacob Lawrence, Mark Rothko, and Richard Diebenkorn are also popular with visitors to the museum. The abstract color studies of Augustus Vincent Tack are said to have inspired the artists of the famous Washington Color School.

Rooms full of opalescent canvases by Bonnard and Vuillard are particularly well matched to this intimate museum. Cubist pioneer Georges Braque is represented by thirteen works, including the magnificent canvas The Round Table, and the Paul Klee room with such whimsical canvases as Arab Song and Picture Album brings delight to visitors of all ages.

American artists are equally celebrated in The Phillips Collection. Such 19th century artists as Homer, Eakins, Prendergast, Whistler, and Ryder are displayed together, and the museum is especially strong in the works of modernists O'Keeffe, Marin, Dove, and Hartley. Horace Pippin's Domino Players is a perennial favorite, often displayed with paintings by other naif American painters.

Phillips, Sandra S., Simon Baker, et al. (2010). Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance, and the Camera since 1870. San Francisco, CA / New Haven, Conn., San Francisco Museum of Modern Art / Yale University Press.
Since the rise of the photographic medium in the late 19th century, people have been fascinated by the camera's ability to record striking moments both public and private. From Mathew Brady's haunting images of the Civil War to the present day paparazzi's brand of voyeurism-for-hire, photography has long served to capture not only the posed portrait but also the personal, the intimate, the unexpected, and the taboo. This fascinating book examines the ways in which acts of voyeurism and surveillance have inspired, challenged, and expanded the medium of photography throughout its evolution.

Featuring photography by Sophie Calle, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Walker Evans, Harun Farocki, Nan Goldin, Robert Mapplethorpe, Helmut Newton, Andy Warhol, and Weegee, among others, Exposed chronicles the artistic, political, and even moral dilemmas that underlie some of these artists' best known works. Through insightful essays and commentary by Sandra Phillips, one of the foremost authorities on the history of 20th-century photography, Exposed examines some of the most invasive and unsettling aspects of photography, including the use of the hidden camera, the production of erotic pictures and pornography, and the intersection of photography with both celebrity and violence.

Phillips-Fein, Kim (2017). Fear City: New York's Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics
. New York, Metropolitan Books.
When the news broke in 1975 that New York City was on the brink of fiscal collapse, few believed it was possible. How could the country's largest metropolis fail? How could the capital of the financial world go bankrupt? Yet the city was indeed billions of dollars in the red, with no way to pay back its debts. Bankers and politicians alike seized upon the situation as evidence that social liberalism, which New York famously exemplified, was unworkable. The city had to slash services, freeze wages, and fire thousands of workers, they insisted, or financial apocalypse would ensue.

In this vivid account, historian Kim Phillips-Fein tells the remarkable story of the crisis that engulfed the city. With unions and ordinary citizens refusing to accept retrenchment, the budget crunch became a struggle over the soul of New York, pitting fundamentally opposing visions of the city against each other. Drawing on never-before-used archival sources and interviews with key players in the crisis, Fear City shows how the brush with bankruptcy permanently transformed New York -- and reshaped ideas about government across America.

Phillips-Fein, Kim (2009). Invisible Hands: the Making of the Conservative Movement from the New Deal to Reagan
. New York, W. W. Norton & Company.
Looking beyond the usual roster of right-wing Christians, anticommunist neo-cons and disgruntled working-class whites, this incisive study examines the unsung role of a political movement of businessmen in leading America's post-1960s rightward turn. Historian Phillips-Fein traces the hidden history of the Reagan revolution to a coterie of business executives, including General Electric official and Reagan mentor Lemuel Boulware, who saw labor unions, government regulation, high taxes and welfare spending as dire threats to their profits and power. From the 1930s onward, the author argues, they provided the money, organization and fervor for a decades-long war against New Deal liberalism -- funding campaigns, think tanks, magazines and lobbying groups, and indoctrinating employees in the virtues of unfettered capitalism. Theirs was also a battle of ideas, she contends; the business vanguard nurtured conservative thinkers like economist Friedrich von Hayek and his secretive Mont Pellerin Society associates, who developed a populist free-market ideology that persuaded workers to side with their bosses against the liberal state. Combining piquant profiles of corporate firebrands with a trenchant historical analysis that puts economic conflict at the heart of political change, Phillips-Fein makes an important contribution to our understanding of American conservatism.

Pianaro, Roberta and Donna Leon (2010). Brunetti's Cookbook
. New York, Atlantic Monthly Press.
Among their many pleasures, Donna Leon's Commissario Guido Brunetti novels have long been celebrated for their mouth-watering descriptions of food. Multicourse lunches at home with Paola and the children, snacks grabbed at a bar with a glass of wine or two, a quick sandwich during a busy day, or a working lunch at a neighborhood trattoria in the course of an investigation have all delighted Brunetti, as well as Leon's readers and reviewers. And then there's the coffee, the pastries, the wine, and the grappa. In Brunetti's Cookbook, Donna Leon's best friend and favorite cook brings to life these fabulous Venetian meals. Eggplant crostini, orrechiette with asparagus, pumpkin ravioli, roasted artichokes, baked branzino, pork ragu with porcini - these are just a few of the over ninety recipes for antipasti, primi, secondi, and dolci. The recipes are joined by excerpts from the novels, four-color illustrations, and six original essays by Donna Leon on food and life in Venice. Charming, insightful, and full of personality, they are the perfect addition to this long awaited book.

Picasso, Pablo, William Stanley Rubin, et al. (1980). Pablo Picasso, a Retrospective
. New York. Boston, Museum of Modern Art ; distributed by New York Graphic Society.
Pablo Picasso: A Retrospective is the catalogue of the most ballyhooed exhibition of the century: the Picasso retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art. Fortunately, the book, like any good catalogue, is more than just the record of an exhibition. Its most impressive feature is summed up by William Rubin as follows: I have attempted to communicate ideas about Picasso's development through the juxtaposition of particular works. The layout aspires to a kind of art history without words.' As much is obvious from the fact that the sections of the book, divided into years, become shorter and cover longer periods as Picasso's Iife and creativity waned.

But more importantly, in practical terms, Rubin's method means that for such masterpieces as La Vie, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon and Guernica (as well as many other works) we are presented with several, always extremely informative, preparatory studies. Rubin also places together distinct works which function as contexts for each other and may be mutually illuminating. The juxtaposition of the painting Still Life with Deer's Skull, the assemblage Head of a Bull and the bronze and copper sculpture Death's Head, for instance ' tells us as much regarding Picasso's feelings about vitality and the fact of death as any page of text could.

Piketty, Thomas (2014). Capital in the Twenty-First Century
. Cambridge, MA, Belknap Press.
Thomas Piketty's new book, Capital in the 21st Century, painstakingly details the dynamics of wealth and income inequality throughout the last two centuries, and offers a somewhat grim picture of the future of economic inequality. Along the way, Piketty also offers his theory of the cause of exploding executive pay and how we can successfully combat this destructive trend.

Pilger, John (2007). Freedom Next Time: Resisting the Empire
. New York, Nation Books.
Imperial ambitions of the U.S and Britain have threatened aspirations for freedom in a variety of smaller nations, not just in the distant past but as recently as the 1960s through the current day, according to renowned journalist and filmmaker Pilger. The small island of Diego Garcia, in the Indian Ocean, was sold by the British to the American military in the 1960s, its inhabitants dumped in the slums of Mauritius, uncompensated and unrecognized. Recent court challenges revealed the ruthlessness of the two powers, but the island remains the third largest military base for the U.S and its launching pad for attacks against the Middle East. Pilger draws on meticulous research and interviews to uncover the human cost of the skulduggery of the imperial powers in Diego Garcia as well as Afghanistan, Iraq, South Africa, and Palestine as the U.S and Britain have heartlessly put their interests ahead of those of citizens of weaker nations. The U.S and Britain have, according to Pilger, crushed hopes for freedom even as they have espoused a belief in spreading democracy.

Pilger, John (2002). The New Rulers of the World
. London; New York, Verso.
John Pilger collects both original work and expanded versions of his essays on power, its secrets and illusions in a book that illuminates the nature of modern imperialism. He discloses how up to a million Indonesians died as a price for being the World Bank's 'model pupil' and how the people of Iraq suffered in the wake of the West's decade-long embargo. He also reflects on Australia's continued subjugation of the Aboriginal people at a time when the country relentlessly hyped its 2000 Sydney Olympics. And, following September 11th and the subsequent bombing of Afghanistan, he outlines the new thrust of U.S. power and its goal of 'world order'.

ilisuk, Marc and Jennifer Achord Rountree (2015). The Hidden Structure of Violence: Who Benefits from Global Violence and War
. New York, Monthly Review Press.
The Hidden Structure of Violence marshals vast amounts of evidence to examine the costs of direct violence, including military preparedness and the social reverberations of war, alongside the costs of structural violence, expressed as poverty and chronic illness. It also documents the relatively small number of people and corporations responsible for facilitating the violent status quo, whether by setting the range of permissible discussion or benefiting directly as financiers and manufacturers. The result is a stunning indictment of our violent world and a powerful critique of the ways through which violence is reproduced on a daily basis, whether at the highest levels of the state or in the deepest recesses of the mind.

Pinker, Steven (1995). The Language Instinct
. New York, HarperPerennial.
A three-year-old toddler is "a grammatical genius "--master of most constructions, obeying adult rules of language. To Pinker, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology psycholinguist, the explanation for this miracle is that language is an instinct, an evolutionary adaptation that is partly "hard-wired" into the brain and partly learned. In this exciting synthesis--an entertaining, totally accessible study that will regale language lovers and challenge professionals in many disciplines--Pinker builds a bridge between "innatists" like MIT linguist Noam Chomsky, who hold that infants are biologically programmed for language, and "social interactionists" who contend that they acquire it largely from the environment. If Pinker is right, the origins of language go much further back than 30,000 years ago (the date most commonly given in textbooks)--perhaps to Homo habilis, who lived 2.5 million years ago, or even eons earlier. Peppered with mind-stretching language exercises, the narrative first unravels how babies learn to talk and how people make sense of speech. Professor and co-director of MIT's Center for Cognitive Science, Pinker demolishes linguistic determinism, which holds that differences among languages cause marked differences in the thoughts of their speakers. He then follows neurolinguists in their quest for language centers in the brain and for genes that might help build brain circuits controlling grammar and speech. Pinker also argues that claims for chimpanzees' acquisition of language (via symbols or American Sign Language) are vastly exaggerated and rest on skimpy data. Finally, he takes delightful swipes at "language mavens" like William Safire and Richard Lederer, accusing them of rigidity and of grossly underestimating the average person's language skills. Pinker's book is a beautiful hymn to the infinite creative potential of language.

Pinker, Steven (1997). How the Mind Works
. New York, Norton.
With verve and clarity, the author of The Language Instinct (1993) offers a thought-challenging explanation of why our minds work the way they do. Pinker, director of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience at MIT, synthesizes cognitive science and evolutionary biology to present the human mind as a system of mental modules designed to solve the problems faced by our evolutionary ancestors in their foraging way of life, i.e., understanding and outmaneuvering objects, animals, plants, and other people. He brings together two theories: the computational theory of mind, which says that the processing of information, including desires and beliefs, is the fundamental activity of the brain, and the theory of natural selection. He suggests that four traits of our ancestors may have been prerequisites to the evolution of powers of reasoning: good vision, group living, free hands, and hunting. He believes that human brains, having evolved by the laws of natural selection and genetics, now interact according to laws of cognitive and social psychology, human ecology, and history. He considers in turn perception, reasoning, emotion, social relations, and the so-called higher callings of art, music, literature, religion, and philosophy. (Language is omitted here, having been treated in his earlier work.) What could be heavy going with a less talented guide is an enjoyable expedition with the witty Pinker leading the way. To get his message across he draws on old camp songs, limericks, movie dialogue, optical illusions, logic problems, musical scores, science fiction, and much more. Along the way, he demolishes some cherished notions, especially feminist ones, and has some comforting words for those who struggled through Philosophy 101 (solving philosophical problems is not what the human mind was evolved to do).

Pinker, Steven (2002). The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature
. New York, Viking.
Our conceptions of human nature affect everything aspect of our lives, from child-rearing to politics to morality to the arts. Yet many fear that scientific discoveries about innate patterns of thinking and feeling may be used to justify inequality, to subvert social change, and to dissolve personal responsibility.

In The Blank Slate, Steven Pinker explores the idea of human nature and its moral, emotional, and political colorings. He shows how many intellectuals have denied the existence of human nature and instead have embraced three dogmas: The Blank Slate (the mind has no innate traits), The Noble Savage (people are born good and corrupted by society), and The Ghost in the Machine (each of us has a soul that makes choices free from biology). Each dogma carries a moral burden, so their defenders have engaged in desperate tactics to discredit the scientists who are now challenging them.

Pinker provides calm in the stormy debate by disentangling the political and moral issues from the scientific ones. He shows that equality, compassion, responsibility, and purpose have nothing to fear from discoveries about an innately organized psyche. Pinker shows that the new sciences of mind, brain, genes, and evolution, far from being dangerous, are complementing observations about the human condition made by millennia of artists and philosophers. All this is done in the style that earned his previous books many prizes and worldwide acclaim: irreverent wit, lucid exposition, and startling insight on matters great and small.

Pinter, Harold (1990). Complete Works 1: The Birthday Party, the Room, the Dumb Waiter, a Slight Ache, a Night out, the Black and White, the Examination
. New York, Grove Weidenfeld.

Pinter, Harold (1990). Complete Works 2: The Caretaker, the Dwarfs, the Collection, the Lover, Night School, Revue Sketches
. New York, Grove Weidenfeld.

Pinter, Harold (1990). Complete Works 3: The Homecoming, Tea Party, the Basement, Landscape, Silence, Revue Sketches
. New York, Grove Weidenfeld.

Pinter, Harold (1990). Complete Works 4: Old Times, No Man's Land, Betrayal, Monologue, Family Voices
. New York, Grove Weidenfeld.

Pirandello, Luigi (1952). Naked Masks, Five Plays
. New York, Dutton.
Pirandello's greatest achievement is in his plays. He wrote a large number of dramas which were published, between 1918 and 1935, under the collective title of Maschere nude [Naked Masks]. The title is programmatic. Pirandello is always preoccupied with the problem of identity. The self exists to him only in relation to others; it consists of changing facets that hide an inscrutable abyss. In a play like Cosí e (se vi pare) (1918) [Right You Are (If You Think You Are)], two people hold contradictory notions about the identity of a third person. The protagonist in Vestire gli ignudi (1923) [To Clothe the Naked] tries to establish her individuality by assuming various identities, which are successively stripped from her; she gradually realizes her true position in the social order and in the end dies naked, without a social mask, in both her own and her friends' eyes. Similarly in Enrico IV (1922) [Henry IV] a man supposedly mad imagines that he is a medieval emperor, and his imagination and reality are strangely confused. The conflict between illusion and reality is central in La vita che ti diedi (1924) [The Life I Gave You] in which Anna's long-lost son returns home and contradicts her mental conception of him. However, his death resolves Anna's conflict; she clings to illusion rather than to reality. The analysis and dissolution of a unified self are carried to an extreme in Sei personaggi in cerca d'autore (1921) [Six Characters in Search of An Author] where the stage itself, the symbol of appearance versus reality, becomes the setting of the play.

Piscator, Erwin and Hugh Rorrison (1980). The Political Theatre
. London, Eyre Methuen.

Plant, Sadie (1992). The Most Radical Gesture: The Situationist International in a Postmodern Age
. London; New York, NY, Routledge.
Tracing the history, ideas and influences of the Situationist International, from dada to postmodernism, this book illustrates how situationist ideas continue to inform political events, cultural movements and theoretical debate.

Plate, Peter (1999). Police and Thieves: A Novel
. New York, Seven Stories Press.
There's a point in Plate's new novel when the narrator, a nickel-bag drug dealer named Doojie, spies a hooker walking up the street. What he sees has nothing to do with sex. Instead, he recognizes the washed-out eyes, the track marks, the veiny legsAall the signs of a disposable human being, just like Doojie and just like everyone else in this oddly moving chronicle of street life in San Francisco's gritty Mission District. The book follows the lives of three small-time drug dealers whose ambitious plans belie the reality of their pathetic circumstances. Besides Doojie, there's Bobo, an ex-convict who provides the trio with a little muscle, and Eichmann (the name is ironic, since Doojie is a Jew), who thinks of himself as the leader of their "cartel," envisioning a rapid climb up the drug hierarchy. Together, the three subsist as squatters in an abandoned garage behind a Laundromat, eat take-out when they have the money, smoke a lot of dope and rip off other dealers when they get the chance. They epitomize the predatory, sad lives of the residents of the Mission that Plate conjures with a piercing eye for detail and mood. The existence of the three dealers is complicated by a cop named Flaherty, who shoots and kills an innocent man one day in a random street dispute. The problem is that Doojie witnesses the shooting. Flaherty tries desperately to track him down, and eventually he grows so obsessed with killing Doojie that the lawman becomes just another desperate soul in the Mission whose reckless attempts at self-preservation prove to be his undoing. Plate has written about this slice of life before (Snitch Factory; One Foot Off the Gutter), and he continues to do so with tender yet unflinching insight. His portrait of Doojie, whom he traces back to a hard, demented upbringing, stirringly shows how good people wind up doing rotten things.

Plate, Peter (2004). Fogtown: A Novel
. New York, Seven Stories Press.
Pete Plate's newest novel is his best yet. One foggy day in San Francisco brings together bloody ghosts, a dandyish thug, capricious cops, a suicidal punk rocker, a hyper--literate slumlord and a sweet old lady sent by God to hand out cash from a hijacked armored car. In Fogtown, Plate uses a loving hand to carve his characters out of hallucination, perversity and tenacity. Plate's noir sensibility gives him special fluency with the weary souls of urban America's down and out. Fogtown describes an age unmistakeably built on the 20th century of Nelson Algren and Charles Bukowski.

Plato, John M. Cooper, et al. (1997). Complete Works
. Indianapolis, Ind., Hackett Pub.
One might be tempted to ask whether another collection of Plato's works is really necessary, given that they have been translated many times. But several factors set this particular volume apart, making it a worthy addition to most libraries. The translations are all relatively recent and thus reflect contemporary language use and terminology. The collection includes works such as the Minos, Epinomis, Demodocus, Eryxias, and Axiochus, which, though generally considered not to have been written by Plato, are "Socratic" in form or style. The text itself is clearly printed and laid out, with useful notes, and Cooper's introduction and notes about the translations are helpful in setting the dialogs in context. Finally, given what the purchaser receives, the price is reasonable.

Platonov, Andre i Platonovich, Tat i ana Tolsta*i*a, et al. (2000). The Fierce and Beautiful World: Stories
. New York, New York Review Books.
While his work was suppressed by the Russian/Soviet governments during his lifetime (1899-1951), Platonov has emerged as a major influence on current Russian writers. This collection sports a catalog of work from his entire career, including the novella Dzahn and his best short story, The Potudan River. This edition also includes an introduction to the author by Tatyana Tolstaya.

Platt, Tony. (2000). The Scandal of Cal: Land Grabs, White Supremacy, and Miseducation at UC Berkeley
. Berkely, California Heyday.
With the turn of each page, the Berkeley-based writer lays out the facts, figures and atrocities committed by the university as it took the homelands and remains of Native Americans in the United States and Indigenous people in other countries. A bubbling sense of outrage begins a hard boil as Tony Platt rolls out the narrative of Cal's juxtapositional posturing and shameless self-promotion of its origins as rosy and its historical footprint as that of an innovative, progressive institution. Platt peels back the facade of an institution that professes a commitment to social justice and shrouds itself in a legacy of student activism. His central argument is broadly applicable across academia.

Plekhanov, Georgi i Valentinovich (1969). Fundamental Problems of Marxism
. New York, International Publishers.

Plimpton, George, editor (2003). The Paris Review Book of Heartbreak, Madness, Sex, Love, Betrayal, Outsiders, Intoxication, War, Whimsy, Horrors, God, Death, Dinner, Baseball, Travels, the Art of Writing, and Everything Else in the World since 1953
. New York, Picador.
This astoundingly diverse anthology, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Paris Review, is jam-packed with resonant and provocative work from some of our greatest writers, past and present: W.H. Auden, Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, Jack Kerouac, Elizabeth Bishop, Truman Capote, William Burroughs, Susan Sontag, Joyce Carol Oates, Toni Morrison, Jonathan Franzen, Ian McEwan and Alice Munro, to name just a fraction. Rather than relying on critics to illuminate the craft of writing secondhand, the founders inaugurated a series of interviews with the authors themselves, creating what Plimpton, in his introduction, refers to as "a DNA of literature "; several excerpts from those interviews are included here. A look at the eras and themes represented shows that the journal's only abiding mandate has been an evolving brand of artistic humanism, which has morphed and adapted to the changing times. How else can one explain being able to jump with such joy and ease from a hilarious and poignant story by Lorrie Moore to an interview with Ted Hughes about his first meeting with Sylvia Plath, then to Allen Ginsberg's loving, sexually charged poem about the life and death of Frank O'Hara? It is a tribute to Plimpton and his cofounders that the entries in this wonderful book can be read in any order, for the reader will be able to see his or her life reflected on every page.

Plutarch, John Dryden, et al. (1955). The Lives of the Noble Grecians and Romans
. Chicago, Encyclopædia Britannica.
Plutarch in his "Lives Of The Noble Grecians And Romans" written around 100 C.E., sheds new light on Greek and Roman history from their Bronze Age beginnings, shrouded in myth, down through Alexander and late Republican Rome. Plutarch is the lens that we use today to view the Greco-Roman past; his work has shaped our perceptions of that world for 2,000 years. Plutarch writes of the rise of Roman Empire while Gibbon uses his scholarship to advance the story to write about its decline. He was a proud Greek that was equally effected by Roman culture, a Delphic priest, a leading Platonist, a moralist, educator and philosopher with a deep commitment as a first rate writer. Being a Roman citizen, Plutarch was afforded the opportunity to become an intimate friend to prominent Roman citizens and a member of the literary elite in the court of Emperor Trajan.

Plutarch's influence and enormous popularity during and after the Renaissance is legendary among classicist. Plutarch's "Lives", served as the sourcebook for Shakespeare's Roman Plays "Julius Caesar", "Antony and Cleopatra" and "Coriolanus ". By the way Plutarch is even the only contemporary source of all the biographical information on Cleopatra, whom he writes about in his biographies of Julius Caesar, Mark Antony and Octavian. Thomas Jefferson wrote to his nephew that there were three books every gentleman had to have familiarity with; Plutarch's "Lives", Livy's "History of Rome" and Virgil's Aeneid. In fact all the founding fathers of note had read Plutarch and learned much from his fifty biographies of noble men of Greece and Rome. When Hamilton, Jay and Madison write "The Federalist Papers" they use many examples of good and bad leadership traits that they read in Plutarch's work. His biographies are a great study in human character and what motivates leaders to decide and act the way they do, this masterpiece has proven to be still prescient today.

Plutarch, John Dryden, et al. (1979). Plutarch's Lives
. New York, Modern Library.
Plutarch's Lives, written at the beginning of the second century A.D., is a brilliant social history of the ancient world by one of the greatest biographers and moralists of all time. In what is by far his most famous and influential work, Plutarch reveals the character and personality of his subjects and how they led ultimately to tragedy or victory. Richly anecdotal and full of detail, Plutarch's Lives contains profiles and comparisons of Romulus and Theseus, Numa and Lycurgus, Fabius and Pericles, and many more powerful figures of ancient Greece and Rome.

Poe, Edgar Allan and Patrick F. Quinn (1984). Poetry and Tales
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the U.S.: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by the Viking Press.
Poe began his creative career as a poet. This first phase of his life resulted in the three poetry collections: Tamerlane and Other Poems (1827), Al Aaraaf Tamerlane and Minor Poems (1829), and Poems (1831). Early in the 1830's he turned to the short story and quickly established a critical and popular reputation in this genre. Subsequently, he published his fiction in the magazines he edited: Southern Literary Messenger (1835-36), Burton's Gentleman's Magazine (1839-40), Graham's Magazine (1841-42), and the Broadway Journal (1845). Poe's tales were collected in Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque (1840), Prose Romances (1843), and Tales (1845), the last published the same year as his final collection of poetry (The Raven and Other Poems). The long tale, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, was printed separately in 1838. Eureka, Poe's final book and in many ways the culmination of his work, was published in 1848, a year before his death.

The contents of this volume are divided into verse and prose, and within these categories (or their sub-divisions), chronology is the ordering principle. The poetry section contains all of Poe's poems except those of doubtful attribution and those surviving in fragmentary form. The selections from Poe's unfinished verse drama, published by him as Scenes from "Politian," are placed in the poetry section. The prose section includes all the fiction. Also present in that section, under the heading "Tales and Sketches," are a number of pieces that cannot be classed as prose poems, tales, or essays, but which are included in this volume because in them too may be found what Poe, in Arthur Gordon Pym, called the "flickering" of the "imaginative faculties." Eureka concludes the section of prose.

In his preface to The Raven and Other Poems Poe said, "If what I have written is to circulate at all, I am naturally anxious that it should circulate as I wrote it." It should be borne in mind that what Poe wrote he also rewrote. More than most nineteenth-century American authors, Poe's creative energy expressed itself in a process of constant revision of almost everything he wrote; most of his works, as a result, exist in several different printed or manuscript versions. This volume reprints the last-revised versions of the poems, tales, and sketches in which Poe's own editorial hand can be discerned. The revisions range from isolated changes in punctuation, capitalization, italicization--matters to which Poe was extraordinarily attentive--to rewriting so extensive that in certain cases different versions merit presentation as different works. In this volume, readers are offered "Imitation" and "A Dream within a Dream," "Introduction" and "Romance," two versions of "Fairy Land," and a section of "Al Aaraaf" later dropped by Poe ("Mysterious Star!").

The fruits of Poe's last major period of revision appeared in 1845, when all but a handful of the works written up to that time appeared in revised form either in the Broadway Journal, then under Poe's editorship, in Tales, twelve stories selected by Evert Duyckinck for publication in Wiley and Putnam 's "Library of American Books," or in The Raven and Other Poems, another "Library of American Books" venture deemed financially viable because of the stupendous success of "The Raven" earlier that year. These three sources, where many of Poe's writings found their final form, supply a majority of the texts presented here.

Between 1845 and his death in 1849, Poe wrote stories and poems for various periodicals and gift-books and continued to revise some of his earlier work, marking changes in his own copies of Tales and The Raven and Other Poems (bound together and now known as the "Lorimer Graham" copy), in the "Whitman" copy of Broadway Journal (a bound copy of the weekly that Poe gave to Sarah Helen Whitman in 1848), and also probably in loose periodical clippings. The new material from this period was first collected in Rufus Wilmot Griswold's edition of Poe's Works of 1850-56. Although Griswold in his edition for the most part simply reprinted earlier published versions of Poe's works, in a few cases-some of the tales and poems and the longer narrative "Hans Pfaall"--evidence from collation of texts suggests that Griswold used copy revised by Poe. Griswold did not, however, have access to the marked copies of Poe's own books. For works that Poe revised in these personal copies and for works that he left in manuscript at his death, this volume usually reprints texts from T. O. Mabbott's edition of Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe or Floyd Stovall's edition of The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe which incorporate the late revisions.

The longer narratives apart from "Hans Pfaall" have a more straightforward history. "The Journal of Julius Rodman" appeared only once, in Burton's Gentleman's Magazine, and that text is reprinted here. The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym is from the Harper first edition; differences in later editions are presumably non-authorial.

The sketches and articles also present few textual problems. For only one of the sketches was it necessary to make a choice among texts. The sketch first published in Burton's in 1840 under the title "The Philosophy of Furniture" was revised by Poe, renamed by him, and published elsewhere five years later as "House Furniture." This revised version, with the original and familiar title, is printed here. Similarly, only one of the articles--technically, "plate articles," written on commission to accompany engraved plates--was revised and republished. The text of "The Island of the Fay" is the only case where a revised text has been deliberately rejected in favor of the earliest one; Poe omitted allusions to the plate in later versions because they were printed independently of John Sartain's engraving. The articles are presented here with their original plates.

As was his practice, Poe revised the text of Eureka, published by Putnam in 1848. The more than 300 alterations and additions which he made in four separate copies of the first edition have been integrated into a critical edition by Roland W. Nelson. This reconstructed text, reflecting Poe's last decisions, is printed here.

Selection of texts and preparation of textual notes have been aided by Mabbott's annotations in the Harvard University Press edition of Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe, by Stovall's discussions in The University Press of Virginia edition of The Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, by material drawn from Collected Writings of Edgar Allan Poe, edited by Burton R. Pollin (Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1981), and by the generous assistance of Joseph J. Moldenhauer.

Poe, Edgar Allan and Gary Richard Thompson (1984). Essays and Reviews
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the U.S.: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by the Viking Press.
G.R. Thompson, editor. The most complete collection of Poe's critical writings ever published, revealing his wit, uncompromising candor, and breadth of knowledge. Contains all his major writings on poetry, fiction, and the duties of a critic, along with his reviews of writers both known and unknown, and finally, his articles on a wealth of subjects, including South Sea exploration, geography, music, drama, cryptography, ancient languages, and modern cities. "Poe's criticism has never been made fully available until now." - Harold Bloom, The New York Review of Books

Pohl, Frederik and C. M. Kornbluth (2011). The Space Merchants
. New York, St. Martin's Griffin.
In a vastly overpopulated near-future world, businesses have taken the place of governments and now hold all political power. States exist merely to ensure the survival of huge transnational corporations. Advertising has become hugely aggressive and boasts some of the world's most powerful executives. Through advertising, the public is constantly deluded into thinking that all the products on the market improve the quality of life. However, the most basic elements are incredibly scarce, including water and fuel. The planet Venus has just been visited and judged fit for human settlement, despite its inhospitable surface and climate; colonists would have to endure a harsh climate for many generations until the planet could be terraformed. Mitch Courtenay is a star-class copywriter in the Fowler Schocken advertising agency and has been assigned the ad campaign that would attract colonists to Venus, but a lot more is happening than he knows about. Mitch is soon thrown into a world of danger, mystery, and intrigue, where the people in his life are never quite what they seem, and his loyalties and core beliefs will be put to the test.

Poitras, Gilles. (2001). Anime Essentials: Every Thing a Fan Needs to Know
. Berkeley, Calif.; Stone Bridge Press.
What makes Japanese animation Japanese? What are the top, not-to-be-missed films? Who's got the anime goods? What's it all mean anyway? Answering just about every question a fan (or curious parent) has, Anime Essentials is an easy-to-read and fun-to-look-at overview of the pop culture phenomenon sweeping America. It discusses the major players, where to get your anime fix, otaku (devoted fan) etiquette, how to run an anime club (and get pre-release screenings!), how to "talk" anime to outsiders, and lots more of interest both to veterans and newcomers.

Poling, Clark V. (1986). Kandinsky's Teaching at the Bauhaus: Color Theory and Analytical Drawing
. New York, Rizzoli.
Kandinsky's color classes at the Bauhaus became particularly famous, especially for his association of the primary colors yellow, red, and blue with the basic geometrical forms triangle, square, and circle. Kandinsky explained the structure of different color systems, called attention to the psychological effects of color and dealt with the specificity of the non-colors, black and white. The studies, for the most part commentated and visually carefully presented, reveal both the systematic style of the course and the range of possible interpretations of Kandinsky's teachings.

Polito, Robert, editor (1997). Crime Novels: American Noir of the 1930s and 40s
. New York, Library of America: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. by Penguin Books USA.
Evolving out of the terse and violent style of the pulp magazines, noir fiction expanded over the decades into a varied, innovative and profoundly influential body of writing. The eleven novels in this adventurous two-volume collection tap deep roots in the American literary imagination, exploring themes of crime, guilt, deception, obsessive passion, murder, and the disintegrating psyche. With visionary and often subversive force they create a dark and violent mythology out of the most commonplace elements of modern life.

American Noir of the 1930s and 40s begins with James M. Cain's pioneering novel of murder and adultery along the California highway, The Postman Always Rings Twice (1934), which shocked contemporaries with its laconic toughness and fierce sexuality. Horace McCoy's They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1935) uses truncated rhythms and a unique narrative structure to turn its account of a Hollywood dance marathon into an unforgettable evocation of social chaos and personal desperation. In Thieves Like Us (1937), Edward Anderson vividly brings to life the dusty roads and back-country hideouts where a fugitive band of Oklahoma outlaws plays out its destiny. The Big Clock (1946), an ingenious novel of pursuit and evasion by the poet Kenneth Fearing, is set by contrast in the dense and neurotic inner world of a giant publishing corporation under the thumb of a warped and murderous chief executive. William Lindsay Gresham's controversial Nightmare Alley (1946), a ferocious psychological portrait of a charismatic carnival hustler, creates an unforgettable atmosphere of duplicity, corruption, and self-destruction. I Married a Dead Man (1948), a tale of switched identity set in the anxious suburbs, is perhaps the most striking novel of Cornell Woolrich, who found in the techniques of the gothic thriller the means to express an overpowering sense of personal doom.

Disturbing, poetic, anarchic, punctuated by terrifying bursts of rage and paranoia and powerfully evocative of the lost and desperate sidestreets of American life, these are underground classics now made widely and permanently available.

Polito, Robert, editor (1997). Crime Novels: American Noir of the 1950s
. New York, Library of America: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. by Penguin Books USA.
Robert Polito, editor. Evolving out of the terse and violent style of the pulp magazines, noir fiction expanded over the decades into a varied, innovative and profoundly influential body of writing. The eleven novels in this adventurous two-volume collection tap deep roots in the American literary imagination, exploring themes of crime, guilt, deception, obsessive passion, murder, and the disintegrating psyche. With visionary and often subversive force they create a dark and violent mythology out of the most commonplace elements of modern life.

Published as a paperback original in 1952, Jim Thompson's The Killer Inside Me, one of the most blistering and uncompromising crime novels ever written, begins the second volume, American Noir of the 1950s. Written from the point of view of an outwardly genial, privately murderous Texas sheriff, it explores the inner hell of a psychotic in daring and experimental style. Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley (1955) likewise adopts a killer's perspective as she traces the European journey of an American con man with a taste for fine living and no conscience about how to attain it. Highsmith's gift for diabolical plotting is matched only by the cool irony of her characterizations. In his nihilistic early novel Pick-Up (1955), Charles Willeford follows the pilgrimage of two lost and self-destructive lovers through the depths of San Francisco, from cheap bars and rooming houses to psychiatric clinics and police stations. David Goodis' Down There (1956) is a moody, intensely lyrical novel of a musician fallen on hard times and caught up in his family's criminal activities; it was adapted by François Truffaut into the film Shoot the Piano Player. With its gritty realism, unrestrained violence and frequently outrageous humor, The Real Cool Killers (1959) is among the most powerful of Chester Himes' series of novels about the Harlem detectives Coffin Ed Johnson and Grave Digger Jones.

Disturbing, poetic, anarchic, punctuated by terrifying bursts of rage and paranoia and powerfully evocative of the lost and desperate sidestreets of American life, these are underground classics now made widely and permanently available.

Politzer, Georges (1976). Elementary Principles of Philosophy
. New York, International Publishers.
Georges Politzer's 1935-36 courses at the Worker's University were posthumously published as Principes elementaires de philosophie (Elementary Principles of Philosophy).

Polizzotti, Mark (1995). Revolution of the Mind: The Life of Andre Breton
. New York, Farrar, Straus, and Giroux.
Polizzotti, editorial director at David R. Godine Publishers, weighs in with a monumental first book that also happens to be the first comprehensive biography of Breton, the father of surrealism. Breton is quite a subject. Always in the thick of things literary, artistic, and political, his life story reads like a who's who of the early-twentieth-century avant-garde. Polizzotti skillfully covers all of Breton's influential critical, polemical, and creative activities, providing brisk but telling profiles of his friends, colleagues, and loved ones. He also conveys the full extent of the turbulence that dominated Breton's complex personality. A magnetic man given to "violent enthusiasms" and mood swings, Breton possessed a prodigious memory and was fascinated by everything from anarchism to Communism, psychic automatism, Dada, dreams, coincidence, and the "marvelous," or unexplainable. Polizzotti tracks Breton's experiences in World War I and the establishment of his most important relationships, then follows the rise, triumph, and decline of Breton's circle, the infamous, world-altering surrealists. Breton emerges from this vividly detailed and invaluable tome as a brilliant if ambivalent catalyst, a leader in the mercurial realm of modern art.

Pollan, Michael (2001). The Botany of Desire: A Plant's Eye View of the World
. New York, Random House.
Erudite, engaging and highly original, journalist Pollan's fascinating account of four everyday plants and their coevolution with human society challenges traditional views about humans and nature. Using the histories of apples, tulips, potatoes and cannabis to illustrate the complex, reciprocal relationship between humans and the natural world, he shows how these species have successfully exploited human desires to flourish."It makes just as much sense to think of agriculture as something the grasses did to people as a way to conquer the trees," Pollan writes as he seamlessly weaves little-known facts, historical events and even a few amusing personal anecdotes to tell each species' story. For instance, he describes how the apple's sweetness and the appeal of hard cider enticed settlers to plant orchards throughout the American colonies, vastly expanding the plant's range. He evokes the tulip craze of 17th-century Amsterdam, where the flower's beauty led to a frenzy of speculative trading, and explores the intoxicating appeal of marijuana by talking to scientists, perusing literature and even visiting a modern marijuana garden in Amsterdam. Finally, he considers how the potato plant demonstrates man's age-old desire to control nature, leading to modern agribusiness's experiments with biotechnology. Pollan's clear, elegant style enlivens even his most scientific material, and his wide-ranging references and charming manner do much to support his basic contention that man and nature are and will always be "in this boat together." - Publishers Weekly

Pollan, Michael (2006). The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
. New York, Penguin Press.
What should we have for dinner? When you can eat just about anything nature (or the supermarket) has to offer, deciding what you should eat will inevitably stir anxiety, especially when some of the foods might shorten your life. Today, buffeted by one food fad after another, America is suffering from a national eating disorder. As the cornucopia of the modern American supermarket and fast food outlet confronts us with a bewildering and treacherous landscape, what's at stake becomes not only our own and our children's health, but the health of the environment that sustains life on earth. Pollan follows each of the food chains--industrial food, organic or alternative food, and food we forage ourselves--from the source to the final meal, always emphasizing our coevolutionary relationship with the handful of plant and animal species we depend on. The surprising answers Pollan offers have profound political, economic, psychological, and even moral implications for all of us.

Pollan, Michael (2008). In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto
. New York, Penguin Press.
In his hugely influential treatise The Omnivore's Dilemma, Pollan traced a direct line between the industrialization of our food supply and the degradation of the environment. His new book takes up where the previous work left off. Examining the question of what to eat from the perspective of health, this powerfully argued, thoroughly researched and elegant manifesto cuts straight to the chase with a maxim that is deceptively simple: Eat food, not too much, mostly plants. But as Pollan explains, food in a country that is driven by a thirty-two billion-dollar marketing machine is both a loaded term and, in its purest sense, a holy grail. The first section of his three-part essay refutes the authority of the diet bullies, pointing up the confluence of interests among manufacturers of processed foods, marketers and nutritional scientists - a cabal whose nutritional advice has given rise to a notably unhealthy preoccupation with nutrition and diet and the idea of eating healthily. The second portion vivisects the Western diet, questioning, among other sacred cows, the idea that dietary fat leads to chronic illness.

Polsky, Ned (1998). Hustlers, Beats, and Others
. New York, N.Y., Lyons Press.
The author has added about 23,000 words to the original. The additions deal with the current poolroom revival and its causes, the further decline of the old bachelor subculture and of pool hustling, the entry of women into the formerly all-male preserve of the poolroom, the great increase of coin-operated tables in bars, and recent books on pool and pool history. Polsky also announces his discovery of the only surviving copy of the first English book on billiards, and gives us the first reproduction of the title page. He updates the books earlier essays on the Beats and their influence in American society, on research methods for studying crime, and on pornography's producers, consumers, and opponents. Back-cover blurbs from reviews of the original book call it a classic. A new blurb from novelist David Markson says that the additions alone are worth the price of this expanded new edition.

Pons, Silvio, Robert Service, et al. (2010). A Dictionary of 20th-Century Communism
. Princeton, Princeton University Press.
The first book of its kind to appear since the end of the Cold War, this reference provides encyclopedic coverage of communism and its impact throughout the world in the 20th century. With the opening of archives in former communist states, scholars have found new material that has expanded and sometimes altered the understanding of communism as an ideological and political force. The book explains what communism was, the forms it took, and the enormous role it played in world history from the Russian Revolution through the collapse of the Soviet Union and beyond. It examines the political, intellectual, and social influences of communism around the globe, and features contributions from an international team of 160 scholars. It includes more than 400 entries on major topics, such as: Figures: Lenin, Mao, Stalin, Ho Chi Minh, Pol Pot, Castro, Gorbachev ; Events: Cold War, Prague Spring, Cultural Revolution, Sandinista Revolution ; Ideas and concepts: Marxism-Leninism, cult of personality, labor ;Organizations and movements: KGB, Comintern, Gulag, Khmer Rouge ; Related topics: totalitarianism, nationalism, antifascism, anticommunism, McCarthyism.

Pool, Phoebe (1985). Impressionism
. New York, N.Y., Thames and Hudson.
Impressionists and their art.

Popper, Nathaniel (2016). Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money
. New York, Harper.
Bitcoin may be a product of computer science, but it is a very human story. This highly entertaining history reminds us that truth can be stranger than fiction and can be peopled with even more unusual and compelling characters.

Porter, Katherine Anne (2008). Collected Stories and Other Writings
. New York, NY, Library of America.
Eudora Welty said that Katherine Anne Porter 'writes stories with a power that stamps them to their very last detail on the memory.' Set in her native Texas and her beloved Mexico, prewar Nazi Germany and the gothic Old South, they are stories of love, outrage, betrayal, and spiritual reckoning that are severe but never cruel, and always exquisitely precise. They number fewer than thirty, but as Robert Penn Warren commented, 'many are unsurpassed in modern fiction,' and when gathered in one volume in 1965 they won their author both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. The Library of America now reprints that landmark volume, The Collected Stories of Katherine Anne Porter, and pairs it with a completely new selection from Porter's long-out-of-print short prose. Expanding the contents of her 1952 collection The Days Before to include both early journalism and major pieces from her final three decades, the prose works collected here are grouped in four parts: critical essays on writers she loved and learned from, including James, Cather, Lawrence, and Colette; personal essays and speeches on such topics as the craft of writing, her own work, women in myth and in history, and American politics; essays and reports on Mexican life, letters, and revolution; and two previously uncollected forays into autobiography.

Poulet, Georges (1977). Proustian Space
. Baltimore, Johns Hopkins University Press.

Pound, Ezra (1952). Guide to Kulchur
. Norfolk, Conn., New Directions.
The Guide to Kulchur, first published in 1938, is one of Ezra Pound's most stimulating books. As might be expected, this is no ordinary Baedeker of the arts, no conventional tour of familiar landmarks and highspots, but an iconoclastic revision of the cultural (in the broadest sense) curriculum. In a sequence of short, pungent chapters, Pound covers the whole territory of "kulchur" - from the Chinese philosophers to modern poetry, from music to economics - as he discovered it for himself in a lifetime of reading, looking, and listening.

Pound, Ezra (1957). Selected Poems
. New York, New Directions Publishing Corporation.
A compact yet representative selection of this modernist poet's poems and translations covering Pound's entire writing career.

Pound, Ezra (1970). Selected Cantos of Ezra Pound
. New York, New Directions Pub. Corp.
Among his fellow modernists, Ezra Pound inspired equal parts admiration and contempt. T.S. Eliot called him "il miglior fabbro" and dedicated "The Waste Land" to him after Pound had surgically stripped down the masterwork. Gertrude Stein, on the other hand, mocked his obsession with "Kulchur" and his pedagogical need to insert his versions of history, thought, economics, and morality into the Cantos. Pound was, she punched, "a village explainer, excellent if you are a village, but if you are not, not."

Turning to the poems affords illumination, though not resolution. The complete Cantos number 117, weigh in at more than 800 pages, and require several companion volumes of exegesis, filled as they are with private matters and forgotten, obscure souls and associations. Selected Cantos, 117 pages in all, contains what Pound called his "beauty spots ": evocations of his heroes (from Chinese emperors to the Founding Fathers), cameos and critiques of his contemporaries (Yeats admiring the symbol of Notre Dame more than Notre Dame itself), and scabrous, unbeautiful visions of politicians, war profiteers, and "the perverts, the perverters of language" in hell. A signal irony is that the poet whose goal was to "make it new" is often freshest in his evocations and imitations of the past.

The greatest sequence is, however, "The Pisan Cantos ". In 1945, following his pro-fascist Italian radio broadcasts, Pound was imprisoned by the American military. The art that emerged out of desperation, particularly Canto LXXXI, is a litany of nostalgia, pain, and delusion. Pound for once casts a sharp eye (usually reserved for others) on his personal and artistic failings: "Pull down thy vanity / How mean thy hates / Fostered in falsity." But even this section is troubling. In the end, the village explainer could explain little.

Pound, Ezra (1972). The Cantos of Ezra Pound
. [New York, New Directions Pub. Corp.
Collection of poems by Ezra Pound, who began writing these philosophical reveries in 1915. The first were published in Poetry magazine in 1917; through the decades the writing of cantos gradually became Pound's major poetic occupation, and the last were published in 1968. The complete edition of The Cantos (1970) consists of 117 sections. In his early cantos Pound offered personal, lyrical reactions to such writers as Homer, Ovid, Dante, and Remy de Gourmont, as well as to sundry politicians and economists. The early verses include memories of his teenage trips to Europe. The Pisan Cantos (1948), written while Pound was incarcerated--first in a prison camp for war criminals and later in a hospital for the criminally insane--were among the most admired sections of the poem; they won a Bollingen Prize in 1949.

Pound, Ezra (1978). Translations
. Westport, Conn., Greenwood Press.

Pound, Ezra (1987). Abc of Reading
. New York, Published for J. Laughlin by New Directions Pub. Corp.

Pound, Ezra (2003). Poems and Translations
. New York, Library of America.
American literature's modernist revolution is inconceivable without the catalyzing presence of Ezra Pound. With his advocacy of Imagism and Vorticism, his encouragement of writers such as T. S. Eliot, James Joyce, H.D., and William Carlos Williams, his transformations of older literatures (from Japanese Noh plays and the Anglo-Saxon lament "The Seafarer" to the poetry of Guido Cavalcanti and Arnaut Daniel), Pound was in the swirling center of poetic change. In such early volumes as Ripostes, Cathay, Lustra, and Hugh Selwyn Mauberley - as surely as in his later magisterial versions of The Confucian Odes and the Sophoclean dramas Women of Trachis and Elektra - Pound followed his own directive to "make it new," opening fresh formal pathways while exploring the most ancient traditions. Before, during, and after the controversies and catastrophes of his public career (culminating in his long residence in a Washington mental hospital while under indictment for treason), Pound remained capable of rare technical brilliance and indelible lyricism.

This Library of America volume is the most comprehensive collection of Pound's poetry (excepting his long poem The Cantos) and translations ever assembled. Ranging from the text of the handmade first collection Hilda's Book (a gift to the poet H.D.) to his late translations of Horace, and containing dozens of items previously unavailable, Poems and Translations reveals the diversity and richness of a body of work marked by daring invention and resonant music.

Here are the lush early lyrics, echoing Browning and the Troubadours; the chiseled free verse of such masterpieces as "The Return," "Near Perigord," and "Homage to Sextus Propertius"; the dazzling translations which led Eliot to call Pound "the inventor of Chinese poetry for our time." The Chinese verse translations are supplemented by Pound's versions of the Confucian prose texts - The Analects, The Great Digest, and The Unwobbling Pivot - which he saw as crucial to his literary aims. An extensive chronology offers guidance to Pound's tumultuous life, and detailed notes clarify the many recondite allusions.

Pound, Ezra, Lea Baechler, et al. (1990). Personae: The Shorter Poems of Ezra Pound
. New York, New Directions Pub.
Known for his delicate perception as well as his passionate opinions, Ezra Pound published this, his first collection of poetry, in 1926. Pound was as much a diviner as he was a poet, and his writing is as much observation and experience as it is prophecy. He was especially drawn to beauty and his writing extols the magnificence of profound emotion and the beguiling wonderment of intellect. From translations and reconstructions of pieces of ancient literature to his own postulations on art, love, and life, this is a worthy addition to any personal library.

Pound, Ezra and T. S. Eliot (1979). Literary Essays of Ezra Pound
. Westport, Conn., Greenwood Press.
An excellent compendium. Poets and writers can learn a great deal about literature and writing from this book.

Pound, Ezra and Michael John King (1977). Collected Early Poems of Ezra Pound
. London, Faber.
The Collected Early Poems of Ezra Pound contains the complete texts of the poet's first six books, their title pages in facsimile (A Lume Spento, 1908; A Quinzaine for This Yule, 1908; Personae, 1909; Exultations, 1909; Canzons, 1911; Ripostes, 1912), and the long poem Redondillas (1911), for many years available only in a rare limited edition. There are, in addition, twenty-five poems originally published in periodicals but not previously collected, as well as thrirty-eight others drawn from miscellaneous manuscripts.

Pound, Ezra and D. D. Paige (1971). The Selected Letters of Ezra Pound, 1907-1941
. London, Faber and Faber Ltd.
Included here are the poet's letters to Margaret Anderson of The Little Review, Harriet Monroe of Poetry, Harriet Shaw Weaver of the Egoist, J.L. Mencken and John Quinn; to such poets and writers as E.E. Cummings, Ernest Hemingway, Amy Lowell, Marianne Moore, T.S. Eliot, James Joyce and, of course, his old friend William Carlos Williams. Of exceptional interest, however, is Pound's massive correspondence with the young unknowns who wrote to him for advice.

Pound, Ezra and Ching Shih (1959). The Confucian Odes, the Classic Anthology Defined by Confucius
. New York, J. Laughlin.

Pound, Ezra and Marcella Spann (1964). Confucius to Cummings, an Anthology of Poetry
. [New York, New Directions.

Powell, Dawn and Library of America (Firm) (2001). Novels, 1930-1942
. New York, Library of America.
Dawn Powell - a vital part of literary Greenwich Village from the 1920s through the 1960s - was the tirelessly observant chronicler of two very different worlds: the small-town Ohio where she grew up and the sophisticated Manhattan to which she gravitated. If her Ohio novels are more melancholy and compassionate, her Manhattan novels, exuberant and incisive, sparkle with a cast of writers, show people, businessmen, and hustling hangers-on. All show rich characterization and a flair for the gist of complex social situations. A playful satirist, an unsentimental observer of failed hopes and misguided longings, Dawn Powell is a literary rediscovery of rare importance.

The first of these volumes contains Dance Night (1930), Powell's own favorite among her works; Come Back to Sorrento (1932), orginally published as The Tenth Moon, a compelling study of frustrated aspirations; Turn, Magic, Wheel (1936), a whirlwind tour of Manhattan's literary life; Angels on Toast (1940), whose farcical pace recalls screwball comedy; and A Time To Be Born (1942), with its evocation of wartime mass media.ia.

Tim Page, the volumes' editor, is the author of Dawn Powell: A Biography and the editor of The Diaries of Dawn Powell and Selected Letters of Dawn Powell. He won the Pulitzer Prize for criticism in 1997, and is a culture critic at the Washington Post

Powell, Dawn and Library of America (Firm) (2001). Novels, 1944-1962
. New York, Library of America. Tim Page, editor with My Home Is Far Away. The Locusts Have No King, The Wicked Pavilion, and The Golden Spur

Power, Samantha (2002). A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide
. New York, Basic Books.
A character-driven study of some of the darkest moments in our national history, when America failed to prevent or stop 20th-century campaigns to exterminate Armenians, Jews, Cambodians, Iraqi Kurds, Bosnians, and Rwandans.
Drawing upon declassified cables, private papers, exclusive interviews with Washington's top policy-makers, and her own reporting from the modern killing fields, Samantha Power tells the story of American indifference and American courage in the face of the worst massacres of the twentieth century.

In this masterful work of social history, Power examines how, in the five decades since the Holocaust, Americans have very rarely marshaled their might to stop genocide and mass terror. Indeed, she shows how the U.S. response to recent genocides bears striking resemblance to the American response to reports of Hitler's Final Solution. By paying particular attention to the last thirty years of world carnage, which coincided with the growth of Holocaust awareness in the United States, Power dissects how the historical memory of the Holocaust can co-exist with an American diplomatic and military policy of non-engagement that has resulted in the loss of millions of lives.

With the authority of one who has witnessed such atrocities herself, Power goes on to set a visionary and yet feasible agenda for how the United States might change course to prevent or halt future genocide. "A Problem from Hell" makes a riveting moral argument for why, as both great power and global citizen, we must renew our vigilance against genocide.

Powers, Richard (2006). Echo Maker, The
. New York, Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
A truck jackknifes off an "arrow straight country road" near Kearney, Nebr., in Powers's ninth novel, becoming the catalyst for a painstakingly rendered minuet of self-reckoning. The accident puts the truck's 27-year-old driver, Mark Schluter, into a 14-day coma. When he emerges, he is stricken with Capgras syndrome: he's unable to match his visual and intellectual identifications with his emotional ones. He thinks his sister, Karin, isn't actually his sister - she's an imposter (the same goes for Mark's house). A shattered and worried Karin turns to Gerald Weber, an Oliver Sacks-like figure who writes bestsellers about neurological cases, but Gerald's inability to help Mark, and bad reviews of his latest book, cause him to wonder if he has become a "neurological opportunist." Then there are the mysteries of Mark's nurse's aide, Barbara Gillespie, who is secretive about her past and seems to be much more intelligent than she's willing to let on, and the meaning of a cryptic note left on Mark's nightstand the night he was hospitalized. MacArthur fellow Powers (Gold Bug Variations, etc.) masterfully charts the shifting dynamics of Karin's and Mark's relationship, and his prose - powerful, but not overbearing - brings a sorrowful energy to every page.

Powers, Richard (1998). Gain
. New York, Farrar, Straus, and Giroux.
A novelist who has always taken inspiration from scientific and historical research, most recently in the AI-centered Galatea 2.2, Powers now follows the lead of environmentally concerned writers Thomas Pynchon, Don DeLillo, Jonathan Franzen and Rick Moody by returning to the great (newly literalized) myth behind Hawthorne's House of the Seven Gables: that the tainted American soil will take revenge on us for the sins of our exploitative fathers. In Powers's ambitious but mechanical novel, the victim is Laura Bodey, a real estate agent and single mother whose Midwestern town of Lacewood is polluted with mysterious carcinogens produced by its biggest employer, the Clare Soap and Chemical corporation. Laura's battle with ovarian cancer takes up half the book, but the novel really belongs to Clare itself. Interspersing Laura's story with the company's history from 1820s Boston to the present, Powers touches lightly on myriad aspects of American life over the last 170 years: the millennialist religious revival of William Miller, the Civil War, the changing fashions of advertising (perhaps the novel's most entertaining subplot), the history of labor and management. Although they never mesh with Laura's present-day misadventures ("tragedy" is much too strong for such an academic book), the Clare chronicles play to Powers's strengths (literary pastiche, historical and scientific summary, witty description, a knack for idyll) and cover his weaknesses (clunky dialogue, flat characters, portentous commonplaces). The result is impressive and imaginative, albeit a little puzzling. Powers has given us the historical novel as survey course - a curiosity that we never knew we needed but that we can't keep from admiring.
Powers, Richard (1992). Gold Bug Variations, The. New York, HarperPerennial.
Powers (Three Farmers on Their Way to a Dance; Prisoner's Dilemma) is a recipient of a MacArthur "genius" grant, and it seems appropriate: this strange, overwritten, often infuriating, manically intelligent and sometimes dee
ply moving novel could hardly have been produced by a writer of mere talent. Powers has woven an extraordinary knowledge of music, of science (particularly of the search for genetic coding, and of computer programming), of the mysteries of language and art history, into a saga that is dazzling and wearying in almost equal measure. The novel jumps back and forth between the late '50s, when brilliant scientist Stuart Ressler is involved with an Illinois research team trying to break the mysteries of DNA coding, and the '80s, when librarian Jan O'Deigh and computer programmer Franklin Todd get to know Ressler, now holding an insignificant night job at a massive computer database operation in Brooklyn, N.Y., and try to figure what derailed his promising career. Not a great deal happens, in a conventional narrative sense. Ressler has an affair with one married fellow scientist and learns music from another; his scientific career is, in fact, aborted by his resulting passion for music. O'Deigh leaves her glib Madison Avenue boyfriend, takes up with Todd and is then abandoned by him in his vain search for information about an obscure 16th-century Flemish artist. Toward the end the three principals are involved in a massive computer scam to help a stricken colleague. Despite occasional bewilderment at arid patches of scientific jargon and interminable displays of arcane knowledge for its own sake, a reader persists with The Gold Bug Variations (the title, obviously, is a play on Bach's Goldberg Variations, which have a key role in the book's intellectual structure, and Edgar Allan Poe's The Gold Bug, about the solving of a puzzle). For there is a perpetual air of surprise about the book, of intellectual excitement, a passionate involvement with words that expands into delightfully witty dialogue and profoundly evocative description.

Powers, Richard (1994). Operation Wandering Soul: A Novel
. New York, HarperPerennial.
Although shorter than Powers's massive and magnificent The Gold Bug Variations, this remarkable novel is just as packed with allusions from literature, history, science, folklore, medicine, and music. On the surface, it is the story of the doomed romance between an overworked, emotionally exhausted pediatric surgeon and a physical therapist and of their efforts to rescue the children in their care from their prescribed fates. But beneath its cover story--and this novel plumbs great depths--this is nothing less than the story of humankind, with the Pied Piper as central metaphor. That tale is turned into traveling theater by the hospital kids and its text provided with such historical glosses as the Children's Crusade and the mass evacuation of school children from London during the Blitz. What are we doing here? Where are we going? These questions echo throughout the book, but finding answers is left to the reader. A dazzling performance: delightful, dismaying, disturbing, doing all that novels are meant to do.

Powers, Richard (2014). Orfeo
. New York, W. W. Norton & Company.
Retired composer Peter Els has an unusual hobby, do-it-yourself genetic engineering. Is his work dangerous? We're not sure, but when hazmat-suited government agents descend on his home, he flees, becoming perhaps the world's least likely suspected terrorist, the "biohacker Bach." On his prolonged cross-country journey, we learn Els' life story in flashback: how he fell in love with music and with a woman, went to school at the height of the avant garde, and began a lifelong struggle between the urge to invent and the need to please. World events, from JFK's assassination to 9/11 to H5N1, provide a kind of tragic meter. Els' leap from music to genetics seems forced at first, but Powers (National Book Award winner for The Echo Maker, 2006) plays the long game, sure-handedly building a rich metaphor in which composition is an analog for other kinds of human invention, with all the beauty and terror that implies. Like his protagonist, he makes art that challenges rather than reassures his audience. Powers has a way of rendering the world that makes it seem familiar and alien, friendly and frightening. He is sometimes criticized as too cerebral, but when the story's strands knit fully together in the final act, the effect is heartbreaking and beautiful. --Keir Graf

Powers, Richard (2000). Plowing the Dark
. New York, Farrar, Straus, and Giroux.
A groundbreaking literary novelist and MacArthur "genius" grant winner, Powers (Galatea 2.2; Gain; The Gold Bug Variations) takes on virtual reality, global migration, prolonged heartbreak, the end of the Cold War and the nature and purpose of art in his ambitious and dazzling seventh book. Like most of Powers's previous works, this novel weaves together two sets of characters. One comprises artists and programmers at the Cavern, a pioneering virtual-reality project sponsored by a Microsoftesque company. As college students in the early 1970s, painter Adie Klarpol, writer Steve Spiegel and composer Ted Zimmerman shared a house, an art scene, a complex erotic entanglement and a sense of limitless potential. When the novel opens, it's the mid-'80s, and Steve is a programmer: he convinces Adie to flee New York City and commercial art for Washington State and the Cavern. We follow Adie as she learns about new media and about her new, multiethnic colleagues, each with his or her own emotional problems. As Adie and Steve rediscover high art and each other, both must return to the charismatic Ted and his painful fate. Powers's other plot concerns Taimur Martin, an American teacher taken hostage in Beirut. Taimur spends most of the novel in captivity, thrown back on memory and imagination: his harrowing second-person narration transforms outward monotony into inward drama, building up to some of Powers's best writing to date. Powers's fans love his gorgeous, allusive (if sometimes florid) prose, and his digressions into the sciences; both features, largely missing from Gain, re-emerge here to spectacular effect. Taimur's life and Adie's link up only thematically--they never meet; instead, Powers's dramatic prose and his intellectual reach makes their symbolic connection more than enough to propel the novel toward its moving close.

Powers, Richard (1996). Prisoner's Dilemma
. New York, HarperPerennial.
Eddie Hobson, Sr., a history teacher, black humorist, and irrepressible quizzmaster, is sick. His fainting spells have worsened, and because of his ingrained aversion to doctors, his worried family is at a loss as to what to do with him. Meanwhile, in private, he concentrates on putting the finishing touches on a secret project he calls Hobstown, a place that he promises will save him, the world and everything in it.

Prashad, Vijay (2003). Fat Cats & Running Dogs: The Enron Stage of Capitalism
. Monroe, ME, Common Courage Press.
From the author of two Village Voice Books of the Year comes a ruthless expose of the raptors at Enron. Behind the screams over workers' disappearing pensions, disappearing jobs, and disappearing CEO responsibility lies a bigger story: What Enron has done to the world. Included is "A Manual for Corporate Terrestrial Conquest," complete with juicy tips for imperialist globalization.

Prashad shows we have come full-circle, back to the imperialism practiced by the East India Company from 1600-1857. Even as Enron collapsed, Enronism is the new norm. A new level of criminality. Criminality perfected by Enron.

Prashad, Vijay (2007). Darker Nations, The: A People's History of the Third World
. New York, New Press; Distributed by W.W. Norton.
Scholarly but accessible, this history of Third World intellectual thought and politics captures the shared ideals, institutions and strategies that have united the Latin American countries and the new Asian and African states that have stood outside U.S. and Soviet spheres of influence since WWII. This Third World project did more than steer a neutral course between the nuclear-armed contenders of the Cold War era, claims Prashad (The Karma of Brown Folk). Anticolonial nationalism was also the basis for an alternative world order premised on peace, autonomy and cooperation. But Third World unity was also fragile. The optimism of newly independent nation-states that shaped the United Nations into their principal global platform gave way after the 1960s to frustration, conflict, compromised sovereignty and diminishing expectations. Prashad reveals the close interrelations among such obstacles as the persistence of old social hierarchies, the mobilization of religious views and reinvented tribalism, and punishing debt burdens designed to maintain Western hegemony over a "developing" world. Indeed, he argues, "cultural nationalism" easily becomes "the Trojan-horse of IMF-driven globalization." While the subtitle is misleading - Prashad necessarily concentrates on towering figures like India's Nehru, Indonesia's Sukarno and Egypt's Nasser - the book offers a vital assertion of an alternative future, grounded in an anti-imperial vision.

Prashad, Vijay (2016). The Death of the Nation and the Future of the Arab Revolution
. Berkeley, Calif., University of California Press.
A critical primer to the Middle East conflicts today, from Syria and Saudi Arabia to the chaos in Turkey. Mixing anecdotes from street-level reporting that give a reader a sense of what is at stake with a birds-eye view of the geopolitics of the region and the globe, Prashad covers the changes in players, politics, and economics in the Middle East over the last five years. 'The Arab Spring was defeated neither in the byways of Tahrir Square nor the souk of Aleppo,' he explains. 'It was defeated roundly in the palaces of Riyadh and Ankara as well as in Washington, D.C., and Paris.' The heart of this book explores the turmoil in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon--countries where ISIS emerged and is thriving. It is here that the story of the region rests. What would a post-ISIS Middle East look like? Who will listen to the grievances of the people? Can there be another future for the region that is not the return of the security state or the continuation of monarchies? Placing developments in the Middle East in the broader context of revolutionary history, The Death of the Nation tackles these questions.

Prejean, Helen (1994). Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty in the United States
. New York, Vintage Books.
A Catholic nun's impassioned memoir of her friendship with two death-row inmates, coupled with a plea for the abolition of capital punishment. In 1982, Prejean, a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Medaille, agrees to correspond with convicted rapist and murderer Patrick Sonnier, awaiting execution in Louisiana's electric chair. Letters lead to visits, and Prejean becomes spiritual advisor to the condemned man. Her counsel takes hold, and Sonnier dies repentant--far more so than Prejean's second death-row friend, the arrogant Robert Lee Wilson, also a rapist and murderer. Both killers come off as repellently fascinating, but the real interest here is in Prejean, who begins as a frail but courageous soul, utterly out of place inside a prison, and winds up as a fierce spokeswoman for the right to life--even of those who have taken the lives of others. Her arguments against capital punishment are well known but preached with passion: The death penalty is racist, barbaric, and doesn't deter crime; innocent people get killed, etc. But her real brief lies in the grim details of execution, both in the degradation of the long weeks of waiting and in the torture of the execution itself--which involves, says Prejean, extreme physical and mental pain. The details will turn heads and stomachs: last-minute meetings with the governor, who always has his own agenda; last meals with the prisoner (Sonnier feasts on steak and apple pie, and thanks the cook); the last seconds of life, as the condemned man's face is covered by a veil (Wilson winks at Prejean as the cloth descends). To Prejean, the whole story is a web of crimes--the original murder; the execution; the moral hypocrisy of the judicial system; the suffering inflicted upon the families of both killer and victim--to which the only moral response is love inspired by Christ, who ''refused to meet hate with hate and violence with violence. - Kirkus Reviews

Preminger, Alex and T. V. F. Brogan (1993). The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics
. Princeton, N.J., Princeton University Press.
The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics is a comprehensive reference work dealing with all aspects of its subject: history, types, movements, prosody, and critical terminology. Prepared by recognized authorities, its articles treat their topics in sufficient depth and with enough lucidity to satisfy the scholar and the general reader alike. Entries vary in length from relatively brief notices to substantial articles of about 20,000 words.

The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics, published in 1965, established itself book as a standard in the field. Among the 215 contributors were Northrop Frye writing on allegory, Murray Krieger on belief in poetry, Philip Wheelwright on myth, John Hollander on music, and William Carlos Williams on free verse. In 1974, the Enlarged Edition increased the entries with dozens of new subjects, including rock lyric, computer poetry, and black poetry, to name just a few.

The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics accounts for the extraordinary change and explosion of knowledge within literary and cultural studies since the 1970s. This edition, completely revised, preserves what was most valuable from previous editions, while subjecting each existing entry to revision. Over 90 percent of the entries have been extensively revised and most major ones entirely rewritten. Completely new entries number 162, including those by new contributors Camille Paglia, Barbara Herrnstein Smith, Elaine Showalter, Houston Baker, Andrew Ross, and many more. New entries include those on cultural criticism, discourse, feminist poetics, and Chicano poetry.

Improvements cover several areas: All the recent developments in theory that bear on poetry are included; bibliographies of secondary sources are ex-tended; cross-references among entries and through blind entries have been expanded for greater ease of use; and coverage of emergent and non-Western poetries is dramatically increased. Indeed, a hallmark of the encyclopedia is its world-wide orientation on the poetry of national and cultural groups.

Price, Reynolds (1993). The Collected Stories
. New York; Toronto; New York, Atheneum; Maxwell Macmillan Canada; Maxwell Macmillan International.
Indisputably one of our most masterly writers, Price (Kate Vaiden; Blue Calhoun) bends to no literary fashion; he writes about unsung, ordinary people, lifting their lives out of anonymity. Of the 50 stories in this third collection of his short fiction, half are newly gathered; the rest come from collections published in 1963 and 1970. Many of the characters in these magical, quietly revelatory, death-obsessed tales are transformed by chance encounters, in settings that include Price's native south but also range throughout the world."Walking Lessons" concerns a college teacher who comes to terms with his wife's suicide after assisting a dying Navajo woman on her reservation. In "An Early Christmas," a divorced American painter, a lapsed Catholic, sets off to attend Christmas mass in Bethlehem, where he finds a fresh perspective on his life and art through meetings with Palestinian Arabs in the occupied West Bank. The same generosity of spirit and penetrating insight that mark Price's novels infuse these unsparingly honest narratives. His characters grope almost blindly toward redemption, their earned epiphanies lifting them slightly closer to "the mind of God." Everywhere they stumble upon the abyss, whether as a tourist at the Dachau concentration camp ("A Fool's Education"); a man who kidnaps his granddaughter ("Toward Home"); or the (perhaps autobiographical) survivor of four spinal surgery operations steeled by the memory of a long dead cousin ("The Golden Child"). In nearly every story, Price's unflinching celebrations of life and death cut to the bone.

Prins, Nomi (2014). All the Presidents' Bankers : The Hidden Alliances That Drive American Power
. New York, Nation Books.
All The Presidents' Bankers is a compelling narrative of how a small group of private bankers and their financial institutions shaped America's economy and its global position since the start of the twentieth century. Through personal, political and professional networks, these bankers strategically exercised, and continue to exercise, disproportionate control over the destiny of billions of people. Nomi Prins offers an explosive account of how this came to be, and how the banks continue to influence the world economy and dominate government. Aligning the complex relationships between political and financial leaders since the early 1900s, Prins exposes the elite bankers that served as unelected leaders and confidants, acting as a shadow government concealed behind the US presidency from Wilson to Obama. With eye-opening correspondence culled from Presidential libraries across the country, against a timeline of two world wars and multiple market crashes, All The Presidents' Bankers traces the shocking consequences of a system in which there is no line between public office and private power.

Prins, Nomi (2018). Collusion: How Central Bankers Rigged the World
. New York, Hachette Book Group.
Exposes the collusion between central banks as they control the global markets and dictate economic policy, casting an unflinching spotlight on the dark conspiracies and unsavory connections within the halls of power.

Prodger, Phillip, Lynda Roscoe Harigan, et al. (2011). Man Ray / Lee Miller: Partners in Surrealism
. London and New York, Merrell Publishers.
Bringing together unique and rarely seen photographs, paintings, sculpture and drawings, this exquisite book tells the story of the tumultuous relationship between the artists Man Ray (1890-1976) and Lee Miller (1907-1977). From 1929 to 1932, the two lived together in Paris, first as teacher and student, and later as lovers. Historically, Miller has been described as Man Ray's muse, but Partners in Surrealism reveals how their brief, mercurial love affair was a key source of mutual and sustained inspiration, resulting in some of the most powerful work of each artist's career. Featuring a candid and poignant contribution from Antony Penrose, the son of Miller and the English painter Roland Penrose, on the relationship between Man Ray and his parents in later years, this is an extraordinary exploration of the love, lust and desire that drove the art of the Surrealists.

Pritchett, V. S. (1997). The Pritchett Century
. New York, Modern Library.
Pritchett has collected his favorite pieces from the impressive oeuvre of his father, noted critic and writer V.S. Pritchett (1900-97): parts of a Dickensian autobiography, travel pieces covering everything from the Amazon to the Appalachians, book reviews whose subjects range from Balzac to Rushdie, and, of course, his short stories. Raised in squalid surroundings he remembers with hardheaded affection, Pritchett became a revered knight of the realm. His own style was that of the great 19th-century realists - he remained so true to the traditions that a reader will have the impression of opening a book written in an earlier era - but he was open to stylistic innovations, as can be seen from the selections on Saul Bellow and Garcia Marquez. His short stories will undoubtedly remain for some time a model of the genre. With convincing dialog and apt descriptions, they begin near a turning point, presenting a slice-of-life that gives readers a great deal to discuss about human behavior.

Prose, Francine (2002). The Lives of the Muses: Nine Women & the Artists They Inspired
. New York, HarperCollins Publishers.
In The Lives of the Muses, Francine Prose writes a spirited and enlightening expose of nine women who fired the imaginations of some of the most inimitable artists and thinkers of the 19th and 20th centuries. With wicked wit, she shows how these women were both exemplars of their times and iconoclasts struggling to assert their own identity within the unconventional relationships they formed with these men. In doing so, she undertakes an examination of the concept of the muse in all its permutations--from the static nine Muses of classical Greek mythology, through Dante's oft-recycled Beatrice, to its ironized figuration in contemporary popular culture.

In addition to Alice Liddell, Prose looks at the following women: Hester Thrale, a long-suffering brewer's wife whose romantic friendship allowed the depressive Dr. Samuel Johnson to continue writing; the tormented Elizabeth Siddal, an opium-addicted artist who became Beatrice to Pre-Raphaelite painter and poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti; Lou Andreas-Salome, who captivated and aroused a triumvirate of original thinkers: Friedrich Nietzsche, Rainer Maria Rilke, and Sigmund Freud; the "imperious" Gala Dali, who continued to sleep with her ex-husband, poet Paul Eluard, even as she transformed herself into a phenomenal marketing machine for surrealist Salvador Dali; Lee Miller, a model who mastered the techniques of Man Ray and others, and became a talented photographer; Suzanne Farrell, a ballerina who incarnated, animated, and was inspired to great heights of artistry by the compositions of choreographer George Balanchine; Charis Weston, one in a long line of the erotically restless Edward Weston's cast-off art wives and lovers; and the infamous Yoko Ono, who fought fiercely for recognition as an avant-garde artist as she sought to subserve John Lennon into the role of muse.

Prose draws on photographs, diaries, correspondence, memoirs, and original works of art that reveal the complexity of these artist-muse relationships, and that direct her readers to other books should their curiosity be piqued (as it undoubtedly will). Author Prose has a talent for writing provocative, invigorating prose that engages and excites the reader, inspiring them to undertake wider reading. - Diana Kuprel

Proust, Marcel and Sylvia Townsend Warner (1997). Marcel Proust on Art and Literature 1896-1919
. New York, Carroll & Graf.
Beginning with the remarkable essay "Contre Saint-Beuve," this critical collection presents Proust's views on the contemporary writing of his era, on painting and painters, and on such literary masters of the nineteenth century as Tolstoy, Goethe, and Stendhal.

Pynchon, Thomas (1995). Gravity's Rainbow
. New York, Penguin Books.
Tyrone Slothrop, a GI in London in 1944, has a big problem. Whenever he gets an erection, a Blitz bomb hits. Slothrop gets excited, and then (as Thomas Pynchon puts it in his sinister, insinuatingly sibilant opening sentence), "a screaming comes across the sky," heralding an angel of death, a V-2 rocket. The novel's title, Gravity's Rainbow, refers to the rocket's vapor arc, a cruel dark parody of what God sent Noah to symbolize his promise never to destroy humanity again. History has been a big trick: the plan is to switch from floods to obliterating fire from the sky.

Slothrop's father was an unwitting part of the cosmic doublecross. To provide for the boy's future Harvard education, he took cash from the mad German scientist Laszlo Jamf, who performed Pavlovian experiments on the infant Tyrone. Laszlo invented Imipolex G, a new plastic useful in rocket insulation, and conditioned Tyrone's privates to respond to its presence. Now the grown-up Tyrone helplessly senses the Imipolex G in incoming V-2s, and his military superiors are investigating him. Soon he is on the run from legions of bizarre enemies through the phantasmagoric horrors of Germany.

That's just the Imipolex G tip of the shrieking vehicle that is Pynchon's book. It's pretty much impossible to follow a standard plot; one must have faith that each manic episode is connected with the great plot to blow up the world with the ultimate rocket. There is not one story, but a proliferation of characters (Pirate Prentice, Teddy Bloat, Tantivy Mucker-Maffick, Saure Bummer, and more) and events that tantalize the reader with suggestions of vast patterns only just past our comprehension. You will enjoy Pynchon's cartoon inferno far more if you consult Steven Weisenburger's brief companion to the novel, which sorts out Pynchon's blizzard of references to science, history, high culture, and the lowest of jokes. Rest easy: there really is a simple reason why Kekule von Stradonitz's dream about a serpent biting its tail (which solved the structure of the benzene molecule) belongs in the same novel as the comic-book-hero Plastic Man.

Pynchon doesn't want you to rest easy with solved mysteries, though. Gravity's Rainbow uses beautiful prose to induce an altered state of consciousness, a buzz. It's a trip, and it will last. - Tim Appelo

Pynchon, Thomas (1997). Mason & Dixon
. New York, Henry Holt.
The style is playful, a pastiche redolent of the musty journal and the capitalomania of the day, bumptiously Fieldingesque, and yet as pumped-up and heightened and chock-full of late-20th-century references as the dernier cri from the street. It is wonderfully subversive. In fact, almost all the book's humor is balanced on the razor edge of anachronism, creating a rich stew of accepted and invented history, anecdote, myth and hyperbole. There are precedents here--John Barth, Robert Coover, Gunter Grass, Gabriel García Márquez, E.L. Doctorow and, of course, the Thomas Pynchon of Gravity's Rainbow and V.

Charles Mason (1728-1786) and Jeremiah Dixon (1733-1779) were the British surveyors best remembered for running the boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland that we know today as the Mason-Dixon Line. Here is their story as re-imagined by Thomas Pynchon, featuring Native Americans and frontier folk, ripped bodices, naval warfare, conspiracies erotic and political, major caffeine abuse. We follow the mismatch'd pair--one rollicking, the other depressive; one Gothic, the other pre-Romantic--from their first journey together to the Cape of Good Hope, to pre-Revolutionary America and back, through the strange yet redemptive turns of fortune in their later lives, on a grand tour of the Enlightenment's dark hemisphere, as they observe and participate in the many opportunities for insanity presented them by the Age of Reason.

Pynchon, Thomas (2006). Against the Day
. New York, Penguin Press.
Knotty, paunchy, nutty, raunchy, Pynchon's first novel since Mason & Dixon (1997) reads like half a dozen books duking it out for his, and the reader's, attention. Most of them shine with a surreal incandescence, but even Pynchon fans may find their fealty tested now and again. Yet just when his recurring themes threaten to become tics, this perennial Nobel bridesmaid engineers another never-before-seen phrase, or effect, and all but the most churlish resistance collapses. It all begins in 1893, with an intrepid crew of young balloonists whose storybook adventures will bookend, interrupt and sometimes even be read by, scores of at least somewhat more realistic characters over the next 30 years. Chief among these figures are Colorado anarchist Webb Traverse and his children: Kit, a Yale- and Gottingen-educated mathematician; Frank, an engineer who joins the Mexican revolution; Reef, a cardsharp turned outlaw bomber who lands in a perversely tender menage à trois; and daughter Lake, another Pynchon heroine with a weakness for the absolute wrong man. Psychological truth keeps pace with phantasmagorical invention throughout. In a Belgian interlude recalling Pynchon's incomparable Gravity's Rainbow, a refugee from the future conjures a horrific vision of the trench warfare to come: "League on league of filth, corpses by the uncounted thousands." This, scant pages after Kit nearly drowns in mayonnaise at the Regional Mayonnaise Works in West Flanders. Behind it all, linking these tonally divergent subplots and the book's cavalcade of characters, is a shared premonition of the blood-drenched doomsday just about to break above their heads. Ever sympathetic to the weak over the strong, the comradely over the combine (and ever wary of false dichotomies), Pynchon's own aesthetic sometimes works against him. Despite himself, he'll reach for the portentous dream sequence, the exquisitely stage-managed weather, some perhaps not entirely digested historical research, the "invisible," the "unmappable " - when just as often it's the overlooked detail, the "scrawl of scarlet creeper on a bone-white wall," a bed partner's "full rangy nakedness and glow" that leaves a reader gutshot with wonder. Now pushing 70, Pynchon remains the archpoet of death from above, comedy from below and sex from all sides. His new book will be bought and unread by the easily discouraged, read and reread by the cult of the difficult. True, beneath the book's jacket lurks the clamor of several novels clawing to get out. But that rushing you hear is the sound of the world, every banana peel and dynamite stick of it, trying to crowd its way in, and succeeding.

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