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Book Review: M. G. Piety's Ways of Knowing: Kierkegaard's Pluralist Epistemology

October 19th, 2011 by admin

In the most current issue of The Review of Metaphysics (2011, 65:1) is a stellar review of M. G. Piety's Ways of Knowing which explores Kierkegaard's epistemology. The reviewer begins, 

Piety's book is a tightly reasoned and sharply focused study. Her task is to explicate Kierkegaard's epistemological thought, which she admits is not systematically developed nor even a central focus of his writings, but it is, in her judgment, of critical importance to "his views on religious faith and its role in human experience." Piety claims that Kierkegaard is an epistemological pluralist, although she admits that many of the epistemological "views attributed to him here were held more intuitively than as the result of conscious analysis." Nevertheless, she claims that the epistemological views she presents "may be inferred and extracted from various parts of Kierkegaard's corpus and that if the views are sometimes confusing in their complexity, they nevertheless form a largely coherent whole."

Read the entire review here

Monsters in America is now available

October 14th, 2011 by admin

The wait is finally over! This weekend, a haunting has come to your bookstore. Monsters in America: Our Historical Obsession with the Hideous and the Haunting by W. Scott Poole is now available in time for a fun Halloween read. 

Beginning next week, Scott will also be traveling to bookstores and other awesome venues, including the Music Box Theatre in Chicago, signing books and talking about monsters. Track his progress and find out when he'll be visiting a city near you at monstersinamerica.com

Do you have a book club or group that would like to read Monsters in America? Check out our group and classroom guides at monstersinamerica.com as well, and find out how you can schedule Scott to speak with your group. 

Becoming American? a "treasure trove"

October 13th, 2011 by admin

In her new book Becoming American? Yvonne Haddad seeks to overcome the myth that Arabs and Muslims living in America are somehow not American. In fact, Haddad proposes that the message these groups bring to America is one of an uplifting nature.

Greg Garrett's latest review of Becoming American? focuses on this very aspect of the book. Writing for his online column "Faithful Citizenship," Garrett (author of One Fine Potion: The Literary Magic of Harry Potter) says, 

Haddad reports that the latest generation of Arab-American activists takes American values very seriously, and they believe that their Arab or Muslim heritage can be a part of making America better, into an America "that is not blinded by special interests but is truly guided by the values it preaches." (95) As I wrote in this column last month, the best recent poll shows just that: American Muslims embrace America and want to be embraced in return as American citizens.

That hasn't happened yet. Haddad quotes, for example, a woman who says "I feel American, I bleed American, my country denies me that identity because I am a Muslim." (96) But surely we can see how patently unfair that seems. Books like Becoming American? that inform general readers about the other side of the question can-and one hopes will-be a part of that process of change.

You can read the entire review, which was part of a blogger's roundtable on Patheos.com, by clicking here

Hippies of the Religious Right an "important resource"

October 12th, 2011 by admin

"American evangelicals have long had a complicated relationship with the market." So goes the first sentence of a multi-book review published in the Reviews in American History. Preston Shires's Hippies of the Religious Rightis one of four books reviewed in the essay, published this spring, and is important for is insight into the Jesus movement of the 1960s and 1970s. The reviewer writes,

Hippies of the Religious Right is an important resource because of the information that it provides on the Jesus movement, a short-lived evangelical subgroup that unfortunately has received little attention from historians. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, thousands of young drug users, left-leaning college students, rock musicians, and long-haired idealists gave up sex and drugs and joined the California-based Jesus movement. They embraced an evangelical version of Christianity that melded a literal interpretation of the Bible with the dress, music, and values of the counterculture. Yet thirty years later, the Jesus People were Republicans. A survey of 800 former Jesus People taken in the early twenty-first century revealed that more than half considered themselves conservative, while very few characterized their politics as liberal (p. 178).

You can read the full review via Project Muse by clicking here. More informtion about Hippies of the Religious Right is availale online.

Audio review: Monsters in America

October 11th, 2011 by admin

"Have you ever looked at Frankenstein's monster as a personification of racism after the Reconstruction following the U.S. Civil War?" Well, Scott Poole did, and according to the folks over at A Little Dead Podcast, Poole has done his research in constructing one brilliant book:

"Poole is obviously a fan of horror who has done his research. ... This is a great, insightful, and inspiring read. ... It is most definitely a buy. Get a copy and read it, and I'm sure you'll agree with me that it's an awesome text."

You can listen to the entire review online using the link below.

A Little Dead Podcast [see minute 28:55]

College of Charleston News: Professor turns love of monsters into new book

October 10th, 2011 by admin

From the College of Charleston News & Events page:

College of Charleston history professor Scott Poole grew up in love with monsters. He translated his love for them into a career as a historian, author, and pop culture critic. On October 15, 2011, in the middle of the most monsterific month of the year, Poole will release his sixth book, [Monsters in America:] Our Historical Obsession with the Hideous and the Haunting.

"With Monsters in America, W. Scott Poole has given us a guidebook for a journey into nightmare territory. Insightful and brilliant!" says Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of Patient Zero and Dead of Night.

Monsters in America uniquely brings together history and culture studies to expose the dark obsessions that have helped create our national identity. Consulting newspaper accounts, archival materials, personal papers, comic books, films, and oral histories, Scott Poole has crafted an engrossing, and entirely unique, history of America, one that nimbly illustrates how the creation of the monstrous "other" not only reflects society's fears but shapes actual historical behavior.

The full text of this article can be found here.

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