Rob Sheffield and Julie Klausner talk Karaoke
Rob Sheffield and Julie Klausner talk Karaoke.
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The Great Leveler by Walter Scheidel
The Great Leveler: Violence and the History of Inequality from the Stone Age to the Twenty-First Century by Walter Scheidel
Are mass violence and catastrophes the only forces that can seriously decrease economic inequality? To judge by thousands of years of history, the answer is yes. Tracing the global history of inequality from the Stone Age to today, Walter Scheidel shows that inequality never dies peacefully. Inequality declines when carnage and disaster strike and increases when peace and stability return. The Great Leveler is the first book to chart the crucial role of violent shocks in reducing inequality over the full sweep of human history around the world.
Ever since humans began to farm, herd livestock, and pass on their assets to future generations, economic inequality has been a defining feature of civilization. Over thousands of years, only violent events have significantly lessened inequality. The "Four Horsemen" of leveling—mass-mobilization warfare, transformative revolutions, state collapse, and catastrophic plagues—have repeatedly destroyed the fortunes of the rich. Scheidel identifies and examines these processes, from the crises of the earliest civilizations to the cataclysmic world wars and communist revolutions of the twentieth century. Today, the violence that reduced inequality in the past seems to have diminished, and that is a good thing. But it casts serious doubt on the prospects for a more equal future.
An essential contribution to the debate about inequality, The Great Leveler provides important new insights about why inequality is so persistent—and why it is unlikely to decline anytime soon.
Celebration of E.L. Doctorow with Ta-Nehisi Coates and Jennifer Egan
Friends and fellow writers pay tribute to E. L. Doctorow upon posthumous publication of his Collected Stories. "His prose tends to create its own landscape," wrote Don DeLillo. "His sensitivity to language is perfectly balanced and complemented by a gigantic vision," wrote Jennifer Egan. "He did not so much write fiction about history as he seemed to occupy history itself," wrote Ta-Nehisi Coates. "He owned it. He made it his own."
Don DeLillo also read this evening, from the Doctorow novel Billy Bathgate, but it was not recorded.
George Saunders: Lincoln in the Bardo
One of the masters of short fiction, MacArthur Fellow George Saunders comes to CHF to discuss his long-awaited first novel, Lincoln in the Bardo. Narrated by a dazzling chorus of voices, this book reimagines the death of Abraham Lincoln's eleven-year-old son, Willie, at the dawn of the Civil War. Inspiring in its ambition and formal innovation, it may be Saunders' most original and moving book yet. DePaul University Humanities Director Peter Steeves joins Saunders in conversation.
Kristin Hannah: 2016 National Book Festival
Kristin Hannah discusses
at the 2016 Library of Congress Book Festival in Washington, D.C.
Conversation with Lisa Lucas
Executive Director of the National Book Foundation, Lisa Lucas discusses the responsibilities of her title and her passion for literacy. See the full conversation and more at booktv.org
Tuesday Monica Youn: Poetry & Law
Monica Youn read from her new book, "Blackacre" and participated in a discussion with Martha Dragich, professor emerita of law at the University of Missouri School of Law.
Chuck Klosterman: "But What If We're Wrong" | Talks At Google
Klosterman talks about how his latest book, "But What If We're Wrong?" in which visualizes the contemporary world as it will appear to those who'll perceive it as the distant past. One of the most provocative, perceptive, and entertaining cultural critics of our time considers whether much of what we think we know about reality is false, why that is, and why it matters in all things including music, democracy and the internet.
Isabel Wilkerson and the Great Migration
The mass movement of nearly seven million African-Americans from the South during the Great Migration unleashed a revolution that redefined American politics, culture, and urban life. In The Warmth of Other Suns, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson captures the intimate details and personal stories behind the historic, half-century long exodus. Wilkerson will be joined by WBEZ reporter Natalie Moore in Bronzeville, a subject of her book and the historic epicenter of the Great Migration in Chicago.
Susan Jacoby: 2016 National Book Festival
Susan Jacoby discusses "Strange Gods: A Secular History of Conversion" with Tom Gjelten from NPR at the 2016 Library of Congress Book Festival in Washington, D.C.
After Words: Melissa Fleming, "A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea"
Melissa Fleming, chief spokesperson for the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, discusses her book, "A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea", which recounts the journey of a young woman, Doaa Al Zamel, from Syria to Europe. Here's a portion of her conversation with Dr. Michel Gabaudan, President of Refugees International.
The Art of Philosophy by Susanna Berger
Delving into the intersections between artistic images and philosophical knowledge in Europe from the late sixteenth to the early eighteenth centuries,
The Art of Philosophy
shows that the making and study of visual art functioned as important methods of philosophical thinking and instruction.
Monday Conversation and reading with Zadie Smith
Zadie Smith reads from her new work,
and is introduced by Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah.
Rahul Mehta on No Other World: A Novel at the 2017 AWP Book Fair
Rahul Mehta talks with host Rich Fahle about his latest novel, "No Other World: A Novel" at the 2017 AWP Book Fair.
Daniel Dennett: "From Bacteria to Bach and Back: The Evolution of Minds"
From Bacteria to Bach and Back
, Daniel C. Dennett's most comprehensive exploration of evolutionary thinking yet, he builds on ideas from computer science and biology to show how a comprehending mind could in fact have arisen from a mindless process of natural selection. Part philosophical whodunit, part bold scientific conjecture, this landmark work enlarges themes that have sustained Dennett's legendary career at the forefront of philosophical thought.
Asian-American Literature Today: Kundiman Spotlight
Poets Janine Joseph and Aimee Nezhukumatathil read and discuss their work with Kundiman Advisory Board Co-Chair Jennifer Chang.