Topic: Books

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🔗 112 Gripes About the French

🔗 United States 🔗 International relations 🔗 France 🔗 Military history 🔗 Military history/North American military history 🔗 Military history/United States military history 🔗 United States/Military history - U.S. military history 🔗 Books 🔗 Military history/World War II

112 Gripes About the French was a 1945 handbook issued by the United States military authorities to enlisted personnel arriving in France after the Liberation. It was meant to defuse the growing tension between the American military and the locals.

The euphoria of victory over Germany was short-lived, and within months of Liberation, tensions began to rise between the French and the U.S. military personnel stationed in the country, with the former seeing the latter as arrogant and wanting to flaunt their wealth, and the latter seeing the former as proud and resentful. Fights were breaking out more often, and fears were raised, even among high officials, that the situation might eventually lead to a breakdown of civil order.

Set out in a question-and-answer format, 112 Gripes about the French posed a series of well-rehearsed complaints about the French, and then provided a common-sense rejoinder to each of them — the aim of the authors being to bring the average American soldier to a fuller understanding of his hosts.

It has recently been republished in the United States (ISBN 1-4191-6512-7), and in France under the title "Nos amis les Français" ("Our friends the French"), ISBN 2-7491-0128-X.

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🔗 The Peter Principle

🔗 Books 🔗 Business 🔗 Psychology 🔗 Organizations

The Peter principle is a concept in management developed by Laurence J. Peter, which observes that people in a hierarchy tend to rise to their "level of incompetence": employees are promoted based on their success in previous jobs until they reach a level at which they are no longer competent, as skills in one job do not necessarily translate to another. The concept was elucidated in the book The Peter Principle (William Morrow and Company, 1969) by Dr Peter and Raymond Hull.

Peter and Hull intended the book to be satire, but it became popular as it was seen to make a serious point about the shortcomings of how people are promoted within hierarchical organizations. Hull wrote the text, based on Peter's research. The Peter principle has been the subject of much subsequent commentary and research.

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🔗 Simulacra and Simulation

🔗 Philosophy 🔗 Philosophy/Philosophical literature 🔗 Books

Simulacra and Simulation (French: Simulacres et Simulation) is a 1981 philosophical treatise by Jean Baudrillard, in which the author seeks to examine the relationships between reality, symbols, and society, in particular the significations and symbolism of culture and media involved in constructing an understanding of shared existence.

Simulacra are copies that depict things that either had no original, or that no longer have an original. Simulation is the imitation of the operation of a real-world process or system over time.

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🔗 English as She Is Spoke

🔗 Books 🔗 Linguistics 🔗 Linguistics/Applied Linguistics 🔗 Translation studies

O novo guia da conversação em portuguez e inglez, commonly known by the name English as She Is Spoke, is a 19th-century book written by Pedro Carolino, with some editions crediting José da Fonseca as a co-author. It was intended as a Portuguese–English conversational guide or phrase book; however, as the "English" translations provided are usually inaccurate or incoherent, it is regarded as a classic source of unintentional humour in translation.

The humour is largely a result of Carolino's indiscriminate use of literal translation; this causes many idiomatic expressions to be translated ineptly. For example, Carolino translates the Portuguese phrase chover a cântaros as "raining in jars", when an analogous English idiom is available in the form of "raining buckets".

It is widely believed that Carolino could not speak English, and that a French–English dictionary was used to translate an earlier Portuguese–French phrase book, O novo guia da conversação em francês e português, written by José da Fonseca. Carolino likely added Fonseca's name to the book without his permission in an attempt to give it some credibility. The Portuguese–French phrase book is apparently a competent work, without the defects that characterize English as She Is Spoke.

The title English as She Is Spoke was given to the book in its 1883 republication; this phrase does not actually appear in the original phrasebook, nor does the word "spoke."

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🔗 The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind (1976)

🔗 Books 🔗 Psychology

The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind is the 1976 book by the Princeton psychologist, psychohistorian and consciousness theorist Julian Jaynes (1920-1997). The book addresses the problematic nature of consciousness – “the ability to introspect” – which in Jaynes’s view must be distinguished from sensory awareness and other processes of cognition. Jaynes presents his proposed solution: that consciousness is a “learned behavior” based more on language and culture than on biology; this solution, in turn, points to the origin of consciousness in ancient human history rather than in metaphysical or evolutionary processes; furthermore, archaeological and historical evidence indicates that prior to the “learning” of consciousness, human mentality was what Jaynes called "the bicameral mind" – a mentality based on verbal hallucination.

The first edition was released in January 1977 in English. Two later editions, in 1982 and in 1990, were released by Jaynes with additions but without alterations. It was Jaynes's only book, and it is still in print, in several languages. In addition to numerous reviews and commentaries, there are several summaries of the book's material, for example, in the journal Behavioral and Brain Sciences, in lectures and discussions published in Canadian Psychology, and in Art/World.

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🔗 Against Method

🔗 Philosophy 🔗 Philosophy/Philosophical literature 🔗 Books 🔗 Philosophy/Philosophy of science 🔗 Philosophy/Contemporary philosophy

Against Method: Outline of an Anarchistic Theory of Knowledge is a 1975 book about the philosophy of science by Paul Feyerabend, in which the author argues that science is an anarchic enterprise, not a nomic (customary) one. In the context of this work, the term anarchy refers to epistemological anarchy.

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🔗 Today I learned Epub is just HTML/CSS

🔗 Computing 🔗 Books

EPUB is an e-book file format that uses the ".epub" file extension. The term is short for electronic publication and is sometimes styled ePub. EPUB is supported by many e-readers, and compatible software is available for most smartphones, tablets, and computers. EPUB is a technical standard published by the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF). It became an official standard of the IDPF in September 2007, superseding the older Open eBook standard.

The Book Industry Study Group endorses EPUB 3 as the format of choice for packaging content and has stated that the global book publishing industry should rally around a single standard. The EPUB format is implemented as an archive file consisting of XHTML files carrying the content, along with images and other supporting files. EPUB is the most widely supported vendor-independent XML-based (as opposed to PDF) e-book format; that is, it is supported by almost all hardware readers, except for Kindle.

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🔗 IBM and the Holocaust

🔗 Books

IBM and the Holocaust: The Strategic Alliance between Nazi Germany and America's Most Powerful Corporation is a book by investigative journalist Edwin Black which details the business dealings of the American-based multinational corporation International Business Machines (IBM) and its German and other European subsidiaries with the government of Adolf Hitler during the 1930s and the years of World War II. In the book, published in 2001, Black outlined the way in which IBM's technology helped facilitate Nazi genocide through generation and tabulation of punch cards based upon national census data.

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🔗 Astronautilia

🔗 United States 🔗 Books 🔗 Science Fiction

The Astronautilia (Czech: Hvězdoplavba; full title in Greek: Ποιητοῦ ἀδήλου ΑΣΤΡΟΝΑΥΤΙΛΙΑ ἢ ἡ Μικροοδύσσεια ἡ κοσμική; i.e. "An unknown poet's Starvoyage, or the Cosmic Micro-Odyssey") is the magnum opus, written in 1994 under the hellenised pseudonym Ἰωάννης Πυρεῖα, of Czech poet and writer Jan Křesadlo, one of the most unusual works of twentieth-century Czech literature. It was published shortly after his death, as a commemorative first edition.

While no full English translation exists as yet, there is a sample chapter translation online, and a German translation of the fully transcribed and annotated Greek text is in preparation.

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🔗 Bullshit Jobs

🔗 Books 🔗 Socialism 🔗 Anarchism

Bullshit Jobs: A Theory is a 2018 book by anthropologist David Graeber that argues the existence and societal harm of meaningless jobs. He contends that over half of societal work is pointless, which becomes psychologically destructive when paired with a work ethic that associates work with self-worth. Graeber describes five types of meaningless jobs, in which workers pretend their role is not as pointless or harmful as they know it to be: flunkies, goons, duct tapers, box tickers, and taskmasters. He argues that the association of labor with virtuous suffering is recent in human history, and proposes universal basic income as a potential solution.

The book is an extension of a popular essay Graeber published in 2013, which was later translated into 12 languages and whose underlying premise became the subject of a YouGov poll. Graeber subsequently solicited hundreds of testimonials of meaningless jobs and revised his case into a book that was published by Simon & Schuster in May 2018.

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