This month we are featuring travel related materials, including vintage travel guides, atlases, non-English fiction and dictionaries. We also have materials related to travel through time, not just space. These include history books, Minneiskas (UW-Whitewater yearbooks), Wisconsin Blue Books, and bound volumes of National Geographic from the early 20th century. As always we have a smattering of materials in other subject areas, and this month these include law and health.
Come on over and peruse the books! They are $1 each until October 23, when the price drops to $.25 each.
Play Anything: The Pleasure of Limits, the Uses of Boredom, & the Secret of Games
by Ian Bogost BF408 .B566 2016 New Arrivals Island, 2nd floor
Bogost, a philosopher and game designer, writes about everyday life and the strategic way that everyone should approach mundane tasks. He argues that if we treat grocery shopping like playing sports (that is, accepting the seemingly arbitrary rules and restrictions inherent in games as also applicable to mundane tasks) we can learn to “play anything” by having fun interacting with the world around us. He hopes that by following his advice we can learn to interact with the world and the things in it in ways that give us feelings of comfort, not boredom or frustration.
There are so many levels of “not knowing” in this book, and it all combines to make a heartbreaking and funny and very satisfying book. The girl child, Robin, not knowing how to deal with her parents’ death, or why her black caretaker’s experience with the South African gold mines is so different from her own, or how her self-centered decisions will echo down into others’ lives, or how love and joy will eventually come back to her from the most unexpected sources, if she lets it. The woman, Beauty, in the agony of not knowing what is happening to her own daughter, and not knowing if she can reconcile that eventual knowledge with her own ideals about how to address the apartheid regime. Many of the adults have little to no knowledge of the secret internal life of Robin as well as some other kids in the book (which led to some of the most humorous scenes, in my opinion).
For me, this was also a very compelling personal story to introduce me to a historical time period that I knew very little about prior to this reading – the Soweto Uprising of June 1976.
The narrative alternating between Robin and Beauty makes this a more interesting and multifaceted read, and all the supporting characters are well-rounded and enrich the story. I was happy to read recently that Marais is planning a followup novel with the same characters. Highly recommended.
Spaceplane HERMES: Europe’s Dream of Independent Manned Spaceflight
by Luc van den Abeelen TL795 .A24 2017 New Arrivals Island, 2nd floor
It’s a little early in the semester to be thinking about far away escapes, but this new arrival may spark the thought. Spaceplane HERMES tells the story of how Europe aspired and planned for independent manned spaceflight. Planning began in 1975 for the development of a small ten ton spaceplane to be launched on top of a rocket which would give Europe the capability for shuttling crews between Earth and space stations. While poor organizational and management choices, and unexpected geopolitical changes (German reunification for one), recession, and the Challenger accident were among the many factors that played a role in the end of the program in 1993, space enthusiasts, engineers, makers and dreamers will find this a fascinating read.
Locate articles from the period in publications such as Aviation Week & Space Technology, Nature, and Wall Street Journal by searching Research@UWW.
Four enriching events make up the program, which speaks to both the historical event that brought Francis of Assisi and Sultan Malik al-Kamil together in the 13th Century as well as contemporary Christian-Muslim relations.
Author Melanie McManus will talk about her journey hiking the Ice Age Trail on Thurs., Sept. 21, at 6pm at the Irvin L. Young Memorial Library (431 W Center St, Whitewater).
Her 2013 journey, which began at the western end of the Ice Age Trail in Interstate State Park, St. Croix Falls, is recounted in her memoir, Thousand-Miler: Adventures hiking the Ice Age Trail (short excerpt available online from the Wisconsin Magazine of History). But the book is about more than becoming a “Thousand-Miler” (someone who hikes the entire 1,200 miles of the National Scenic Trail). It’s also about the places and people encountered along the way (some segments of the trail actually go along community streets, although most of it is off-road hiking terrain).
Copies of her book will be available for purchase. The talk is free and open to all.
Andersen Library can help you learn more, with books such as Ice Age Trail companion guide, 2011: More than 100 detailed segment-by-segment descriptions to help you connect with the thousand-mile Ice Age National Scenic Trail (3rd-floor Main Collection OVERSIZE, QE697 .M361 2011), Ice Age Trail atlas: 105 detailed color hiking maps to help you connect with the thousand-mile Ice Age National Scenic Trail (3rd-floor Main Collection OVERSIZE, QE697 .M36 2011), and Along Wisconsin’s Ice Age Trail (3rd-floor Main Collection, QE697 .S545 2008). Additional interesting and practical information, including maps, tips for preparing for a hike, and recommended day trip routes, is provided online by the Wisconsin Dept. of Natural Resources, the U.S. National Park Service, and the Ice Age Trail Alliance.
If you’d like assistance with finding additional information, please ask a librarian (choose chat or email, phone 262-472-1032, or visit the Reference Desk).
How to Win an Argument: An Ancient Guide to the Art of Persuasion
by Marcus Tullius Cicero PA6307 .A2 M39 2016 New Arrivals Island, 2nd floor
It’s nice to know that some things never go out of style. Take Cicero. He was a Roman lawyer, statesman and consul and lived more than 2,000 years ago, yet he’s still regarded as one of the greatest orators of all time. St. Olaf Classics Professor, James May offers a tidy little package of Cicero’s works on the art of persuasion, which he selected, translated and edited.
Should you be so inclined, the editor has included the Latin texts in addition to his English translations. What I like best is the six-page “Ciceronian Cheat Sheet for Effective Speaking.” If you’re taking a dreaded public speaking class this term, you might consider bringing your new friend Cicero along with you to class so you can learn the art of persuasion from a master.
F. Peter Wagner, Associate Professor in the Political Science Dept., will talk about “Back to the Future: The Great War, Nationalism, Imperialism, and the Failure of Internationalism” at 3 p.m. on Mon., Sept. 18, in Fellowship Hall of Fairhaven Senior Services (435 West Starin Road, Whitewater). It’s the first of the Fall 2017 Fairhaven Lecture Series, which are free and open to the public. You can see the list of upcoming lectures at the Fairhaven Lecture Series web page.
In April 1917, President Woodrow Wilson asked for a “war to end all wars.” Shortly after, Congress voted to declare war on Germany. One hundred years and the involvement of four million American military personnel later, we reflect on this war that Wilson hoped would make the world safer for democracy. What are the political and institutional legacies of the war? What impact did the war have on culture worldwide? Join us in recognizing 100 years and the legacy and lessons from the Great War.