rebecca west

Black lamb and grey falcon

Author: Rebecca West

Language: English

Summary: a travel book written by Dame Rebecca West, published in 1941 in two volumes by Macmillan in the UK and by The Viking Press in the US. The book is over 1,100 pages in modern editions and gives an account of Balkan history and ethnography during West’s six-week trip to Yugoslavia in 1937. West’s objective was “to show the past side by side with the present it created”. Publication of the book coincided with the Nazi Invasion of Yugoslavia, and West added a foreword highly praising the Yugoslavs for their brave defiance of Germany. The book’s epigraph reads: “To my friends in Yugoslavia, who are now all dead or enslaved”. – Source: Wikipedia

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camille cusumano

Italy, a love story: Women write about the Italian experience

Author: Camille Cusumano

Language: English

Summary: Legendary for fabulous food, persistent men, and a lyrical language, Italy has inspired many great love affairs–with the country itself. From the notorious occupants and cuisine of Sicily, to the ancient marvels of Rome, to the couture of Milan, women throughout the ages have invented and reinvented adventure in this diverse and voluptuous land. In this thrilling and layered new collection, women explore and describe individual infatuations with a land that is both complicated by and adored for its rich tradition. – Source: Amazon.com

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The XIT Ranch: How Texas Traded Land for a State House

Author: Anne Haw Holte

Language: English

Summary: This is the wild story of how Texas traded land for their Texas capitol building. This is the paper that inspired Anne’s Ten In Texas novel. The acquisition of three million acres of rangeland in the Panhandle, the construction of a state capitol building, and the creation of the XIT Ranch is a big, fantastic story that could only happen in Texas. Timing made the XIT possible. Spanish cattle, railroad building, technological and business innovation, settlers seeking a better life in the west after the Civil War, and the millions of acres of land owned by the state of Texas came together to create one of the largest ranches in the world. – Source: Amazon.com

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Tokyo: a biography

Author: Stephen Mansfield

Language: English

Summary: In a whirlwind journey through Tokyo’s past from its earliest beginnings up to the present day, this Japanese history book demonstrates how the city’s response to everything from natural disasters to regime change has been to reinvent itself time and again. A calamitous fire results in a massive expansion of the city’s territory. A debate over the Samurai code creates far-reaching social change. A malleable boy becomes the figurehead for powerful forces who change an ancient feudal society into a modern industrialized power within a generation. Utter destruction wipes the slate clean again so Tokyoites may start all over. And so it goes. Tokyo’s story is riveting, and by the end of Tokyo: A Biography, readers see a city almost unrivalled in its uniqueness, a place that—despite its often tragic history—still shimmers as it prepares to face the future. – Source: Amazon.com

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White on arrival: Italians, race, color, and power in Chicago, 1890-1945

Author: Thomas A. Guglielmo

Language: English

Summary: Taking the mass Italian immigration of the late 19th century as his starting point and drawing on dozens of oral histories and a diverse array of primary sources in English and Italian, Guglielmo focuses on how perceptions of Italians’ race and color were shaped in one of America’s great centers of immigration and labor, Chicago. His account skillfully weaves together the major events of Chicago immigrant history–the “Chicago Color Riot” of 1919, the rise of Italian organized crime, and the rise of industrial unionism–with national and international events–such as the rise of fascism and the Italian-Ethiopian War of 1935-36–to present the story of how Italians approached, learned, and lived race. By tracking their evolving position in the city’s racial hierarchy, Guglielmo reveals the impact of racial classification–both formal and informal–on immigrants’ abilities to acquire homes and jobs, start families, and gain opportunities in America.  Source: Amazon.com

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