Topic: Books

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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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An Atlas of Fantasy

Books Maps

An Atlas of Fantasy, compiled by Jeremiah Benjamin Post, was originally published in 1973 by Mirage Press and revised for a 1979 edition by Ballantine Books. The 1979 edition dropped twelve maps from the first edition and added fourteen new ones. It also included an introduction by Lester del Rey.

To remain of manageable size, the Atlas excludes advertising maps, cartograms, most disproportionate maps, and alternate history ("might have been") maps, focusing instead on imaginary lands derived from literary sources. It purposefully omits "one-to-one" maps such as Thomas Hardy's Wessex (which merely renames places in southwest England), but includes Barsetshire and Yoknapatawpha County, which are evidently considered to be sufficiently fictionalized. The emphasis is on science fiction and fantasy, though Post suggests there exist enough mystery fiction maps to someday create The Detectives' Handy Pocket Atlas. Other maps were omitted due to permission costs or reproduction quality.

The maps are reproduced from many sources, and an Index of Artists is included.

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Around the World in Seventy-Two Days

Books Women's History

Around the World in Seventy-Two Days is an 1890 book by journalist Elizabeth Jane Cochrane, writing under her pseudonym, Nellie Bly. The chronicle details her 72-day trip around the world, which was inspired by the book, Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne. She carried out the journey for Joseph Pulitzer's tabloid newspaper, the New York World.

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Bookland

Books

"Bookland" is the informal name for the Unique Country Code (UCC) prefix allocated in the 1980s for European Article Number (EAN) identifiers of published books, regardless of country of origin, so that the EAN namespace can catalogue books by ISBN rather than maintaining a redundant parallel numbering system. In other words, Bookland is a fictitious country that exists solely in EAN for the purposes of non-geographically cataloguing books in the otherwise geographically keyed EAN coding system.

Bullshit Jobs

Books

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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Catullus 16

Books Classical Greece and Rome Latin

Pēdīcābō ego vōs et irrumābō ("I will sodomize and face-fuck you") is the first line, sometimes used as a title, of Carmen 16 in the collected poems of Gaius Valerius Catullus (c. 84 BC – c. 54 BC). The poem, written in a hendecasyllabic (11-syllable) meter, was considered so explicit that a full English translation was not published until the late twentieth century. The first line has been called "one of the filthiest expressions ever written in Latin—or in any other language, for that matter."

Carmen 16 is significant in literary history as an artistic work censored for its obscenity, but also because the poem raises questions about the proper relation of the poet, or his life, to the work. Later Latin poets referenced the poem not for its invective, but as a justification for subject matter that challenged the prevailing decorum or moral orthodoxy. Ovid, Pliny the Younger, Martial, and Apuleius all invoked the authority of Catullus in asserting that while the poet should be a respectable person, his work should not be constrained or restricted.

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Debate between sheep and grain

Religion Ancient Near East Books Iraq Mythology Arab world

The "Debate between sheep and grain" or "Myth of cattle and grain" is a Sumerian creation myth, written on clay tablets in the mid to late 3rd millennium BCE.

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Dilbert Principle

Books Business Comics Comics/Comic strips

The Dilbert principle is a concept in management developed by Scott Adams, creator of the comic strip Dilbert, which states that companies tend to systematically promote incompetent employees to management to get them out of the workflow. The Dilbert principle is inspired by the Peter principle, which holds that employees are promoted based on success in their current position until they reach their "level of incompetence" and are no longer promoted. Under the Dilbert principle, employees who were never competent are promoted to management to limit the damage they can do. Adams first explained the principle in a 1995 Wall Street Journal article, and expanded upon it in his 1996 business book The Dilbert Principle.

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Miyamoto Musashi's Final Work

Philosophy Philosophy/Philosophical literature Books Philosophy/Modern philosophy Japan Philosophy/Eastern philosophy

The "Dokkōdō" (Japanese: 獨行道) ("The Path of Aloneness", "The Way to Go Forth Alone", or "The Way of Walking Alone"), is a short work written by Miyamoto Musashi a week before he died in 1645. It consists of 21 precepts. "Dokkodo" was largely composed on the occasion of Musashi giving away his possessions in preparation for death, and was dedicated to his favorite disciple, Terao Magonojō (to whom the earlier Go rin no sho [The Book of Five Rings] had also been dedicated), who took them to heart. "Dokkōdō" expresses a stringent, honest, and ascetic view of life.

The 21 precepts of Dokkodo:

1. Accept everything just the way it is.

2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.

3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.

4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.

5. Be detached from desire your whole life long.

6. Do not regret what you have done.

7. Never be jealous.

8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.

9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself or others.

10. Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love.

11. In all things have no preferences.

12. Be indifferent to where you live.

13. Do not pursue the taste of good food.

14. Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need.

15. Do not act following customary beliefs.

16. Do not collect weapons or practice with weapons beyond what is useful.

17. Do not fear death.

18. Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age.

19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help.

20. You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honour.

21. Never stray from the Way.

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Engines of Creation, by K. Eric Drexler (1986)

Books Transhumanism Alternative Views

Engines of Creation: The Coming Era of Nanotechnology is a 1986 molecular nanotechnology book written by K. Eric Drexler with a foreword by Marvin Minsky. An updated version was released in 2007. The book has been translated into Japanese, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, and Chinese.

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