Them

Adventures with Extremists

Author: Jon Ronson

Publisher: Picador

ISBN: 9781447275466

Category: Elite (Social sciences)

Page: 314

View: 3254

With an introduction by Russell BrandWhat if a tiny, shadow elite rule the world from a secret room?My worryingly paradoxical thought process could be summarized thus: Thank God I don't believe in the secret rulers of the world. Imagine what the secret rulers of the world might do to me if I did.What if a tiny, shadow elite rule the world from a secret room? In Them Jon Ronson sets out to find this room, with the help of the extremists - Islamic fundamentalists, neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klansmen - that believe in it. Along the way, he is chased by men in dark glasses, unmasked as a Jew in the middle of a Jihad training camp, and witnesses international CEOs and politicians participate in a bizarre pagan ritual in the forests of northern California.A Sunday Times bestseller and the book that launched Jon Ronson's inimitable career, Them is an eye-opening, outrageously funny exploration of extremism, which makes both author and reader think twice about the looking-glass world of 'us' and 'them' . . .

The Men Who Stare at Goats

Author: Jon Ronson

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 9781451665970

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 272

View: 6455

Bizarre military history: In 1979, a crack commando unit was established by the most gifted minds within the U.S. Army. Defying all known laws of physics and accepted military practice, they believed that a soldier could adopt the cloak of invisibility, pass cleanly through walls, and—perhaps most chillingly—kill goats just by staring at them. They were the First Earth Battalion, entrusted with defending America from all known adversaries. And they really weren’t joking. What’s more, they’re back—and they’re fighting the War on Terror. An uproarious exploration of American military paranoia: With investigations ranging from the mysterious “Goat Lab,” to Uri Geller’s covert psychic work with the CIA, to the increasingly bizarre role played by a succession of U.S. presidents, this might just be the funniest, most unsettling book you will ever read—if only because it is all true and is still happening today.

The Amazing Adventures of Phoenix Jones

And the Less Amazing Adventures of Some Other Real-Life Superheroes (An eSpecial from Riverhead Books)

Author: Jon Ronson

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 1101568313

Category: Social Science

Page: 68

View: 590

Bestselling author Jon Ronson walks the mean streets of America where he finds real life, modern day superheroes. Fighting crime, saving old ladies, and chasing away drug dealers – all while wearing a mask and a cape. Phoenix Jones patrols Seattle, masked, muscles rippling, while corner boys scatter and teenage runaways are helped, whether they want it or not. He might still see his pediatrician when superhero-ing gets a little too intense, but he’ll be back out there with his ass-kicking comrades as soon as he’s bandaged up. These do-gooding citizens talk the talk, and walk the walk of mythical superheroes – the only thing they're missing is actual supernatural powers. The Amazing Adventures of Phoenix Jones is an inside, intimate look at the world of amateur superheroes and a front row seat to their adventures.

Frank

The True Story That Inspired the Movie

Author: Jon Ronson

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0698155572

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 32

View: 9597

From the bestselling author of The Psychopath Test comes a characteristically humorous story of a musician on the margins. In Frank: The True Story that Inspired the Movie, Jon Ronson reflects on his days playing keyboard for the Frank Sidebottom Oh Blimey Big Band. Frank Sidebottom, best known for performing with a big fake head with a cartoon face painted on it, was a cult favorite in the United Kingdom and is the subject of the new movie Frank, co-written by Ronson and starring Michael Fassbender, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Domhnall Gleeson.

The Call of the Weird

Encounters with Survivalists, Porn Stars, Alien Killers, and Ike Turner

Author: Louis Theroux

Publisher: Da Capo Press

ISBN: 0786731893

Category: Social Science

Page: 320

View: 3277

No, it doesn't get any weirder than this: Thor Templar, Lord Commander of the Earth Protectorate, who claims to have killed ten aliens. Or April, the Neo-Nazi bringing up her twin daughters Lamb and Lynx (A.K.A. Prussian Blue, a white-power folk group for kids) and her youngest daughter, Dresden. For a decade, Louis Theroux has been making acclaimed television programs about offbeat characters on the fringes of U.S. society. Now he revisits the people who have intrigued him the most to try to discover what motivates them-and why they hold their bizarre beliefs. Reflecting on these assorted dreamers, schemers, and outlaws, Theroux entertainingly and unforgettably creates “a moving, funny, and frightening exposé of America and its often elusive dream” (NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC).

Seeds of Terror

Author: Gretchen Peters

Publisher: Oneworld Publications

ISBN: 1851688919

Category: Political Science

Page: 320

View: 5311

Seeds of Terror will reshape the way you think about the West’s enemies, revealing them less as ideologues and more as criminals who earn billions of pounds every year off the opium trade. With the breakneck pace of a thriller, author Gretchen Peters traces their illicit activities from the vast poppy fields of southern Afghanistan to heroin labs run by Taliban commanders, from drug convoys armed with Stinger missiles to the money launderers of Karachi and Dubai. Based on hundreds of interviews with Taliban fighters, smugglers, and law enforcement and intelligence agents, Peters makes the case that we must cut terrorists off from their drug earnings if we ever hope to beat them.

Lost at Sea

The Jon Ronson Mysteries

Author: Jon Ronson

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 1594631956

Category: Literary Collections

Page: 481

View: 4734

Profiles the eccentricities of contemporary culture and the strange things in which people believe, in an investigation of such topics as indigo children, the Insane Clown Posse's juggalo fans, and assisted suicide practitioners.

That the World May Know

Bearing Witness to Atrocity

Author: James Dawes

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 0674030273

Category: Political Science

Page: 304

View: 8455

What can we do to prevent more atrocities from happening in the future, and to stop the ones that are happening right now? That the World May Know tells the powerful and moving story of the successes and failures of the modern human rights movement. Drawing on firsthand accounts from fieldworkers around the world, the book gives a painfully clear picture of the human cost of confronting inhumanity in our day.

The Psychopath Inside

A Neuroscientist's Personal Journey Into the Dark Side of the Brain

Author: James Fallon

Publisher: Current

ISBN: 1617230154

Category: Psychology

Page: 246

View: 8530

A compelling career memoir by an award-winning neuroscientist describes how while studying his own family's brain scans for research he made the disturbing discovery that his own reflected a pattern he recognized from those in the brains of serial killers, a finding that offered new insights into the role of biology in behavior.

Out of the Ordinary

True Tales of Everyday Craziness

Author: Jon Ronson

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

ISBN: 0330524038

Category: Humor

Page: 256

View: 6482

Jon Ronson’s subjects have included people who believe that goats can be killed by the power of a really hard stare, and people who believe that the world is ruled by twelve-foot lizard-men. In Out of the Ordinary, a collection of his journalism from the Guardian, he turns his attention to irrational beliefs much closer to home, investigating the ways in which we sometimes manage to convince ourselves that all manner of lunacy makes perfect sense – mainstream, domestic, ordinary insanity. Whether he finds himself promising his son that he will be at his side for ever, dressed in a Santa costume, or trying to understand why hundreds of apparently normal people would suddenly start speaking in tongues in a Scout hut in Kidderminster, he demonstrates repeatedly how we all succumb to deeply irrational beliefs that grow to inform our everyday existence. Out of the Ordinary is Jon Ronson at his inimitable best: hilarious, thought-provoking and with an unerring eye for human frailty – not least his own. Praise for The Men Who Stare at Goats: ‘Not only a narcotic road trip through the wackier reaches of Bush’s war effort, but also an unmissable account of some of the insanity that has lately been done in our names’ Observer Praise for Them: Adventures with Extremists: ‘A funny and compulsively readable picaresque adventure through a paranoid shadow world’ Louis Theroux, Guardian

Knowledge Goes Pop

From Conspiracy Theory to Gossip

Author: Clare Birchall

Publisher: Berg

ISBN: 1845201434

Category: Social Science

Page: 185

View: 1378

A voice on late night radio tells you that a fast food restaurant injects its food with drugs that make men impotent. A colleague asks if you think the FBI was in on 9/11. An alien abductee on the Internet claims extra-terrestrials have planted a microchip in her body. "Julia Roberts in Porn Scandal" shouts the front page of a gossip mag. A spiritual healer claims he can cure chronic fatigue syndrome with the energizing power of crystals . . . What do you believe? Knowledge Goes Pop examines the popular knowledges that saturate our everyday experience. We make this information and then it shapes the way we see the world. How valid is it when compared to official knowledge and why does such (mis)information cause so much institutional anxiety? This book examines the range of knowledge, from conspiracy theory to plain gossip, and its role and impact in our culture.

Savage Grace

Living Resiliently in the Dark Night of the Globe

Author: Andrew Harvey,Carolyn Baker

Publisher: iUniverse

ISBN: 153203055X

Category: Body, Mind & Spirit

Page: 190

View: 6374

In the boldest and most daring book either author has ever written, Andrew Harvey and Carolyn Baker confront us with the life and death reality of the global crisis and the fact that four crucial strategies must be employed not only to survive the dark night, but to inhabit our bodies and our lives with passionate authenticity, honesty, vigilance, community, compassion, and service. These strategies are Reconnection, Resistance, Resilience, and Regeneration. Deep and unprecedented reconnection with self, others, and Earth must be our mission, regardless of the outcome. Distinguishing between problems which have solutions and predicaments which can only be responded to, Harvey and Baker articulate precisely how we have arrived at this unprecedented juncture and offer strategies of resistance against the fundamental enemies of humanity and the Earth. Such a response demands of us something far deeper than what conventional religions and visions of activism call for--nothing less than living and acting from the Sacred Self, both without illusion and totally committed to compassion and justice even, if necessary, in hopeless situations. With Trump, its as if the Titanic has hit the iceberg. We are the passengers. The only question before us, and before the whole world, is how we stop the ripping of our hull. The original Titanic sunk due to human arrogance. There is still time for us to save ourselves with the power of humility, resistance and renewal. This book offers a compelling and profound pathway for human survival after hitting the iceberg. Jim Garrison, Founder and President of Ubiquity University. A powerful manual for a spiritual revolution! Read it, pray it, reflect on it, and then start acting on it...because the future of the world depends on it. Adam Bucko, co-author of Occupy Spirituality and The New Monasticism

Children's Fiction about 9/11

Ethnic, National and Heroic Identities

Author: Jo Lampert

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135213518

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 220

View: 1614

In this pioneering and timely book, Lampert examines the ways in which cultural identities are constructed within young adult and children’s literature about the attacks of September 11, 2001. Looking at examples including picture books, young adult novels, and a selection of DC Comics, Lampert finds the co-mingling of xenophobia and tolerance, the binaried competition between good and evil and global harmony and national insularity, and the glorification of both the commonplace hero and the super-human. Specifically, Lampert identifies three significant identity categories encoded in 9/11 books for children--ethnic identities, national identities, and heroic identities--arguing that their formation is contingent upon post-9/11 politics. These shifting identities offer implicit and explicit accounts of what constitute good citizenship, loyalty to nation and community, and desirable attributes in a Western post-9/11 context. Lampert makes an original contribution to the field of children’s literature by providing a focused and sustained analysis of how texts for children about 9/11 contribute to formations of identity in these complex times of cultural unease and global unrest.

The Humanitarians

The International Committee of the Red Cross

Author: David P. Forsythe

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521612814

Category: History

Page: 356

View: 4972

Provides a comprehensive overview of the International Committee of the Red Cross from its origins up to the present day.

Re-Imagining Rwanda

Conflict, Survival and Disinformation in the Late Twentieth Century

Author: Johan Pottier

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521528733

Category: Political Science

Page: 251

View: 5232

The tragic conflict in Rwanda and the Great Lakes in 1994–1996 attracted the horrified attention of the world's media. Journalists, diplomats and aid workers struggled to find a way to make sense of the bloodshed. Johan Pottier's troubling study shows that the post-genocide regime in Rwanda was able to impose a simple yet persuasive account of Central Africa's crises upon international commentators new to the region, and he explains the ideological underpinnings of this official narrative. He also provides a sobering analysis of the way in which this simple, persuasive, but fatally misleading analysis of the situation on the ground led to policy errors that exacerbated the original crisis. Professor Pottier has extensive field experience in the region, from before and after the genocide, and he has also worked among refugees in eastern Zaire.

Beyond Convergence

World Without Order

Author: National Defense University (US)

Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform

ISBN: 9781975720421

Category: Computer networks

Page: 402

View: 9321

The world order built upon the Peace of Westphalia is faltering. State fragility or failure are endemic, with no fewer than one-third of the states in the United Nations earning a "high warning"-or worse-in the Fragile States Index, and an equal number suffering a decline in sustainability over the past decade.1 State weakness invites a range of illicit actors, including international terrorists, globally networked insurgents, and transnational criminal organizations (TCOs). The presence and operations of these entities keep states weak and incapable of effective governance, and limit the possibility of fruitful partnerships with the United States and its allies. Illicit organizations and their networks fuel corruption, eroding state legitimacy among the governed, and sowing doubt that the state is a genuine guardian of the public interest. These networks can penetrate the state, leading to state capture, and even criminal sovereignty.2 A growing number of weak and corrupt states is creating gaping holes in the global rule-based system of states that we depend on for our security and prosperity. Indeed, the chapters of this book suggest the emergence of a highly adaptive and parasitic alternative ecosystem, based on criminal commerce and extreme violence, with little regard for what we commonly conceive of as the public interest or the public good. The last 10 years have seen unprecedented growth in interactivity between and among a wide range of illicit networks, as well as the emergence of hybrid organizations that use methods characteristic of both terrorist and criminal groups. In a convergence of interests, terrorist organizations collaborate with cartels, and trafficking organizations collude with insurgents. International terrorist organizations, such as al-Qaeda and Hezbollah, engage energetically in transnational crime to raise funds for their operations. Prominent criminal organizations like Los Zetas in Mexico and D-Company in Pakistan have adopted the symbolic violence of terrorists-the propaganda of the deed-to secure their "turf." And networked insurgents, such as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), have adopted the techniques of both crime and terror.

The Fall of Heaven

The Pahlavis and the Final Days of Imperial Iran

Author: Andrew Scott Cooper

Publisher: Henry Holt and Company

ISBN: 0805098984

Category: History

Page: 416

View: 4405

An immersive, gripping account of the rise and fall of Iran's glamorous Pahlavi dynasty, written with the cooperation of the late Shah's widow, Empress Farah, Iranian revolutionaries and US officials from the Carter administration In this remarkably human portrait of one of the twentieth century's most complicated personalities, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, Andrew Scott Cooper traces the Shah's life from childhood through his ascension to the throne in 1941. He draws the turbulence of the post-war era during which the Shah survived assassination attempts and coup plots to build a modern, pro-Western state and launch Iran onto the world stage as one of the world's top five powers. Readers get the story of the Shah's political career alongside the story of his courtship and marriage to Farah Diba, who became a power in her own right, the beloved family they created, and an exclusive look at life inside the palace during the Iranian Revolution. Cooper's investigative account ultimately delivers the fall of the Pahlavi dynasty through the eyes of those who were there: leading Iranian revolutionaries; President Jimmy Carter and White House officials; US Ambassador William Sullivan and his staff in the American embassy in Tehran; American families caught up in the drama; even Empress Farah herself, and the rest of the Iranian Imperial family. Intimate and sweeping at once, The Fall of Heaven recreates in stunning detail the dramatic and final days of one of the world's most legendary ruling families, the unseating of which helped set the stage for the current state of the Middle East.

Mobinomics

Mxit and Africa's Mobile Revolution

Author: Alan Knott-Craig,Gus Silber

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781920434366

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 199

View: 5733

In these crisscrossing threads are woven the fabric of a community, a society, an economy, a nation. And beyond that, the world itself. But the technology isn't the dream. The dream is what you can do with it.' Three revolutions changed the face of South Africa, the economic powerhouse of the African continent, in 1994. The first was democracy, as millions of newly-enfranchised citizens went to the polls to elect a new government. The second was the internet, bringing information, learning and entertainment into millions of homes. But the real signal of change in the air was the arrival of an electronic device that would put undreamed-of power into the hands of the people. The cellular phone. In a country where less than four per cent of the population had access to a landline phone, mobile telephony opened the gateway to new ways and new worlds of communication. Today, more than 90 per cent of South Africans own at least one mobile phone, and they're not just using them to talk to each other. Mobiles have become tools of education, entrepreneurship, trade, empowerment, activism, media and upliftment. With the advent of the mobile internet, mobiles have also become the hubs of the most powerful force in modern communication. The social network, bringing people together in an interchange of ideas, opinions, chatter and commerce that is changing the way we understand and define communities. This is the story of the biggest and fastest-growing social network in Africa. A network that took shape in the townships of the Western Cape and has grown to be part of the lives of more than 50 million users in 120 countries, sending more than 23 billion messages a month. This is the story of Mxit. A cultural force, a community of millions, with its own economy, its own infrastructure, its own language and its own traditions. This is the story of Mobinomics, the new economy of mobile, and how it is connecting people and changing lives. Read it and learn. Read it and understand. Read it and be moved by the power of mobile.

City of Thorns

Nine Lives in the World's Largest Refugee Camp

Author: Ben Rawlence

Publisher: Picador

ISBN: 1250067642

Category: History

Page: 400

View: 5170

To the charity workers, Dabaab refugee camp is a humanitarian crisis; to the Kenyan government, it is a 'nursery for terrorists'; to the western media, it is a dangerous no-go area; but to its half a million residents, it is their last resort. Situated hundreds of miles from any other settlement, deep within the inhospitable desert of northern Kenya where only thorn bushes grow, Dadaab is a city like no other. Its buildings are made from mud, sticks or plastic, its entire economy is grey, and its citizens survive on rations and luck. Over the course of four years, Ben Rawlence became a first-hand witness to a strange and desperate limbo-land, getting to know many of those who have come there seeking sanctuary. Among them are Guled, a former child soldier who lives for football; Nisho, who scrapes an existence by pushing a wheelbarrow and dreaming of riches; Tawane, the indomitable youth leader; and schoolgirl Kheyro, whose future hangs upon her education. In City of Thorns, Rawlence interweaves the stories of nine individuals to show what life is like in the camp and to sketch the wider political forces that keep the refugees trapped there. Rawlence combines intimate storytelling with broad socio-political investigative journalism, doing for Dadaab what Katherinee Boo's Behind the Beautiful Forevers did for the Mumbai slums. Lucid, vivid and illuminating, City of Thorns is an urgent human story with deep international repercussions, brought to life through the people who call Dadaab home.

Economies of Abandonment

Social Belonging and Endurance in Late Liberalism

Author: Elizabeth A. Povinelli

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

ISBN: 9780822350668

Category: Social Science

Page: 232

View: 8493

In Economies of Abandonment, Elizabeth A. Povinelli explores how late liberal imaginaries of tense, eventfulness, and ethical substance make the global distribution of life and death, hope and harm, and endurance and exhaustion not merely sensible but also just. She presents new ways of conceptualizing formations of power in late liberalism—the shape that liberal governmentality has taken as it has responded to a series of legitimacy crises in the wake of anticolonial and new social movements and, more recently, the “clash of civilizations” after September 11. Based on longstanding ethnographic work in Australia and the United States, as well as critical readings of legal, academic, and activist texts, Povinelli examines how alternative social worlds and projects generate new possibilities of life in the context of ordinary and extraordinary acts of neglect and surveillance. She focuses particularly on social projects that have not yet achieved a concrete existence but persist at the threshold of possible existence. By addressing the question of the endurance, let alone the survival, of alternative forms of life, Povinelli opens new ethical and political questions.