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50+ Library Services
Innovation in Action
Diantha Dow Schull
American Library Association, 2013
Some of the most engaged and frequent users of public libraries are over the age of 50. They may also be the most misunderstood. As Baby Boomers continue to swell their ranks, the behavior, interests, and information needs of this demographic have changed dramatically, and Schull's new book offers the keys to reshaping library services for the new generations of active older adults. A must-read for library educators, library directors, and any information professional working in a community setting, this important book
  • Analyzes key societal trends, such as longer lifespans and improved population health, and their implications for libraries' work with this demographic
  • Profiles Leading-Edge States and Beacon Libraries from across the nation at the forefront of institutional change
  • Discusses issues such as creativity, health, financial literacy, life planning, and intergenerational activities from the 50+ perspective, while showing how libraries can position themselves as essential centers for learning, encore careers, and community engagement
  • Spotlights best practices that can be adapted for any setting, including samples of hundreds of projects and proposals that illustrate new approaches to 50+ policies, staffing, programs, services, partnerships, and communications

The wisdom and insight contained in this book can help make the library a center for positive aging.


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Action and Character According to Aristotle
Kevin L. Flannery, SJ
Catholic University of America Press, 2013
This book will appeal to professional scholars and graduate students with an interest in Aristotle’s ethics and in ethics generally. It proposes comprehensive interpretations of some difficult passages in Aristotle’s two major ethical works ( the Nicomachean Ethics and the Eudemian Ethics ). It brings to bear upon the analysis of human behavior passages in Aristotle’s logical works and in his Physics. It also draws connections among areas of particular interest to contemporary ethics: action theory, the analysis of practical reason, and virtue ethics.

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Action and Conduct
Thomas Aquinas and the Theory of Action
Stephen Brock
Catholic University of America Press, 2021
"Both Thomistic scholars and analytic philosophers interested in theories of human action and accountability will find this book a welcome addition to their libraries. Truly a substantive addition to both Thomistic scholarship and the ongoing analytic investigation into human action and responsible agency."—American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly

"A first-rate book...Brock's lucid and illuminating analysis offers much of value to both intellectual historians and theologians, as well as philosophers."—Theological Studies"Brock's treatment of Aquinas's account of action exhibits a rare combination of rigor and learning. It is, no doubt, the best we have."—The Thomist

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Action, Contemplation, and Happiness
An Essay on Aristotle
C. D. C. Reeve
Harvard University Press, 2012

The notion of practical wisdom is one of Aristotle’s greatest inventions. It has inspired philosophers as diverse as Martin Heidegger, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Elizabeth Anscombe, Michael Thompson, and John McDowell. Now a leading scholar of ancient philosophy offers a challenge to received accounts of practical wisdom by situating it in the larger context of Aristotle’s views on knowledge and reality.

That happiness is the end pursued by practical wisdom is commonly agreed. What is disputed is whether happiness is to be found in the practical life of political action, in which we exhibit courage, temperance, and other virtues of character, or in the contemplative life, where theoretical wisdom is the essential virtue. C. D. C. Reeve argues that the dichotomy is bogus, that these lives are in fact parts of a single life, which is the best human one. In support of this view, he develops innovative accounts of many of the central notions in Aristotle’s metaphysics, epistemology, and psychology, including matter and form, scientific knowledge, dialectic, educatedness, perception, understanding, political science, practical truth, deliberation, and deliberate choice. These accounts are based directly on freshly translated passages from many of Aristotle’s writings. Action, Contemplation, and Happiness is an accessible essay not just on practical wisdom but on Aristotle’s philosophy as a whole.


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God and Action
David B. Burrell C.S.C.
University of Scranton Press, 2008
First published 30 years ago and long out of print, Aquinas: God and Action appears here for the first time in paperback. This classic volume by eminent philosopher and theologian David Burrell argues that Aquinas’s is not the god of Greek metaphysics, but a god of both being and activity. Aquinas’s plan in the Summa Theologiae, according to Burrell, is to instruct humans how to find eternal happiness through acts of knowing and loving. Featuring a new foreword by the author, this edition will be welcomed by philosophers and theologians alike.

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The Argument and the Action of Plato's Laws
Leo Strauss
University of Chicago Press, 1977
The posthumous publication of The Argument and the Action of Plato's "Laws" was compiled shortly before the death of Leo Strauss in 1973. Strauss offers an insightful and instructive reading through careful probing of Plato's classic text.

"Strauss's The Argument and the Action of Plato's 'Laws' reflects his interest in political thought, his dogged method of following the argument of the Laws step by step, and his vigorous defense of this dialogue's integrity in respect to the ideals of the Republic."—Cross Currents

"The unique characteristics of this commentary on the Laws reflect the care and precision which were the marks of Professor Strauss's efforts to understand the complex thoughts of other men."—Allan D. Nelson, Canadian Journal of Political Science

"Thorough and provocative, an important addition to Plato scholarship."—Library Journal

"The major purpose of the commentary is to provide a reading of the dialogue which displays its structural arrangement and the continuity of the argument."—J. W. Dy, Bibliographical Bulletin of Philosophy

"The reader of Strauss's book is indeed guided closely through the whole text."— M. J. Silverthorne, The Humanities Association Review

Leo Strauss (1899-1973) was the Robert Maynard Hutchins Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of political science at the University of Chicago.

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The Argument of the Action
Essays on Greek Poetry and Philosophy
Seth Benardete
University of Chicago Press, 2000

This volume brings together Seth Benardete’s studies of Hesiod, Homer, and Greek tragedy, eleven Platonic dialogues, and Aristotle’s Metaphysics.

The Argument of the Action spans four decades of Seth Benardete’s work, documenting its impressive range. Benardete’s philosophic reading of the poets and his poetic reading of the philosophers share a common ground, guided by the key he found in the Platonic dialogue: probing the meaning of speeches embedded in deeds, he uncovers the unifying intention of the work by tracing the way it unfolds through a movement of its own. Benardete’s original interpretations of the classics are the fruit of this discovery of the “argument of the action.”


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Art, Sustainability and Learning Communities
Call to Action
Edited by Raphael Vella and Victoria Pavlou
Intellect Books, 2024
Presents a case for strong learning communities that take a clear political stand in favor of socially engaged art pedagogies.

The main aim of Art, Sustainability and Learning Communities is to show how shared spaces for exchange in the fields of art education and continuous professional development can reflect, inspire, and integrate sustainability principles that are becoming crucial in today’s world. The authors propose the idea that coordinated action can lead to a more sustainable future by promoting a sense of community, lifelong learning, and confidence in the possibility of changing current conditions.

Its three parts combine expertise in visual arts education, education for sustainable development, contemporary art practice, and sustainability activism. While Part I focuses on literature in the field and the interrelation of different disciplines, Part II provides concrete examples of professional learning communities and pedagogies that can be used to enrich the field of art education. Finally, Part III presents brief case studies illustrating international projects by contemporary artists, curators, environmentalists, and others, providing educators with several inspirational models of concrete and creative action.

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Artist as Author
Action and Intent in Late-Modernist American Painting
Christa Noel Robbins
University of Chicago Press, 2021
With Artist as Author, Christa Noel Robbins provides the first extended study of authorship in mid-20th century abstract painting in the US. Taking a close look at this influential period of art history, Robbins describes how artists and critics used the medium of painting to advance their own claims about the role that they believed authorship should play in dictating the value, significance, and social impact of the art object. Robbins tracks the subject across two definitive periods: the “New York School” as it was consolidated in the 1950s and “Post Painterly Abstraction” in the 1960s. Through many deep dives into key artist archives, Robbins brings to the page the minds and voices of painters Arshile Gorky, Jack Tworkov, Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland, Sam Gilliam, and Agnes Martin along with those of critics such as Harold Rosenberg and Rosalind Krauss. While these are all important characters in the polemical histories of American modernism, this is the first time they are placed together in a single study and treated with equal measure, as peers participating in the shared late modernist moment.

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Arts Education in Action
Collaborative Pedagogies for Social Justice
Edited by Sarah Travis, Jody Stokes-Casey, and Seoyeon Kim
University of Illinois Press, 2020
Arts educators have adopted social justice themes as part of a larger vision of transforming society. Social justice arts education confronts oppression and inequality arising from factors related to race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, class, ability, gender, and sexuality.

This edition of Common Threads investigates the intersection of social justice work with education in the visual arts, music, theatre, dance, and literature. Weaving together resources from a range of University of Illinois Press journals, the editors offer articles on the scholarly inquiry, theory, and practice of social justice arts education. Selections from the past three decades reflect the synergy of the diverse scholars, educators, and artists actively engaged in such projects. Together, the contributors bring awareness to the importance of critically reflective and inclusive pedagogy in arts educational contexts. They also provide pedagogical theory and practical tools for building a social justice orientation through the arts.

Contributors: Joni Boyd Acuff, Seema Bahl, Elizabeth Delacruz, Elizabeth Garber, Elizabeth Gould, Kirstin Hotelling, Tuulikki Laes, Monica Prendergast, Elizabeth Saccá, Alexandra Schulteis, Amritjit Singh, and Stephanie Springgay


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Awareness to Action
The Enneagram, Emotional Intelligence, and Change
Robert Tallon and Mario Sikora
University of Scranton Press, 2006
Are you a helper or an achiever? A challenger or a peacemaker? Awareness to Action explores the nine distinct, yet interconnected personality types of Enneagram theory, which uses a nine-pointed figure to illustrate the relationship between an individual’s dominant personality and the other types that comprise the structure. Mario Sikora and Robert Tallon explain the characteristics of each personality and show how a person can capitalize on their strengths and weaknesses, charting a specific course for personal growth. They discuss practical topics such as relationship building, conflict resolution, and personal development, information that will not only be of interest to individuals seeking a greater understanding of self, but to managers and human resource professionals as well.


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Confronting Child Sexual Abuse
Knowledge to Action
Anne M. Nurse
Lever Press, 2020
Most people get information about child sexual abuse from media coverage, social movements, or conversations with family and friends. Confronting Child Sexual Abuse describes how these forces shape our views of victims and offenders, while also providing an in-depth look at prevention efforts and current research. Sociologist Anne Nurse has synthesized studies spanning the fields of psychology, sociology, communications, criminology, and political science to produce this nuanced, accessible, and up-to-date account. Topics include the prevalence of abuse, the impact of abuse on victims and families, offender characteristics, abuse in institutions, and the efficacy of treatments. Written for people who care for kids, for students considering careers in criminal justice or human services, and for anyone seeking information about this devastating issue, Nurse’s book offers new public policy ideas as well as practical suggestions on how to engage in prevention work. Interactive links to studies, videos, and podcasts connect readers to further resources.

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Consciousness in Action
S. L. Hurley
Harvard University Press

In this important book, Susan Hurley sheds new light on consciousness by examining its relationships to action from various angles. She assesses the role of agency in the unity of a conscious perspective, and argues that perception and action are more deeply interdependent than we usually assume. A standard view conceives perception as input from world to mind and action as output from mind to world, with the serious business of thought in between. Hurley criticizes this picture, and considers how the interdependence of perceptual experience and agency at the personal level (of mental contents and norms) may emerge from the subpersonal level (of underlying causal processes and complex dynamic feedback systems). Her two-level view has wide implications, for topics that include self-consciousness, the modularity of mind, and the relations of mind to world. The self no longer lurks hidden somewhere between perceptual input and behavioral output, but reappears out in the open, embodied and embedded in its environment.

Hurley traces these themes from Kantian and Wittgensteinian arguments through to intriguing recent work in neuropsychology and in dynamic systems approaches to the mind, providing a bridge from mainstream philosophy to work in other disciplines. Consciousness in Action is unique in the range of philosophical and scientific work it draws on, and in the deep criticism it offers of centuries-old habits of thought.


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The Creativity of Action
Hans Joas
University of Chicago Press, 1996
Hans Joas is one of the foremost social theorists in Germany today. Based on Joas’s celebrated study of George Herbert Mead, this work reevaluates the contribution of American pragmatism and European philosophical anthropology to theories of action in the social sciences. Joas also establishes direct ties between Mead’s work and approaches drawn from German traditions of philosophical anthropology.

Joas argues for adding a third model of action to the two predominant models of rational and normative action—one that emphasizes the creative character of human action. This model encompasses the other two, allowing for a more comprehensive theory of action. Joas elaborates some implications of his model for theories of social movements and social change and for the status of action theory in sociology in the face of competition from theories advanced by Luhmann and Habermas.

The problem of action is of crucial importance in both sociology and philosophy, and this book—already widely debated in Germany—will add fresh impetus to the lively discussions current in the English-speaking world.

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The Declaration of America
Our Principles in Thought and Action
Richard Ferrier
St. Augustine's Press, 2022
Richard Ferrier expounds on the basic truth learned from Alan Keyes during work on his political campaign in 1996. "He taught us to see what President Lincoln saw 160 years ago: an American should always take his principles and form his sentiments from those expressed in the Declaration of Independence." Whereas it might seem America is the product of political divorce, the Declaration instead endows our nation with the qualities of a marriage. We are a deliberate union, Ferrier says, and we must strive to live well politically by doing right by the pledge contained in the Declaration.

Here Ferrier transforms decades of teaching American history and its founding into a reflection on its most important document. Our troubled times call for a return to America's fundamental principles. This book shows their sources, their truth, and their lasting power. It is a labor of love, and of hope. 

Anyone seeking opportunity in the United States should read this book and be reminded of the privilege and obligation of the American way of life, all contained in the Declaration of Independence. 

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Dickey Chapelle Under Fire
Photographs by the First American Female War Correspondent Killed in Action
John Garofolo
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2015
"It was dawn before I fell asleep, and later in the morning I was only half-awake as I fed a fresh sheet of paper into the typewriter and began to copy the notes from the previous day out of my book. But I wasn't too weary to type the date line firmly as if I'd been writing date lines all my life:
from the front at iwo jima march 5--
Then I remembered and added two words.
under fire--
They looked great."
In 1965, Wisconsin native Georgette "Dickey" Chapelle became the first female American war correspondent to be killed in action. Now, "Dickey Chapelle Under Fire" shares her remarkable story and offers readers the chance to experience Dickey's wide-ranging photography, including several photographs taken during her final patrol in Vietnam.
Dickey Chapelle fought to be taken seriously as a war correspondent and broke down gender barriers for future generations of female journalists. She embedded herself with military units on front lines around the globe, including Iwo Jima and Okinawa, the Dominican Republic, and Vietnam. Dickey sometimes risked her life to tell the story--after smuggling aid to refugees fleeing Hungary, she spent almost two months in a Hungarian prison. For twenty-five years, Dickey's photographs graced the pages of "National Geographic," the "National Observer," "Life," and others. Her tenacity, courage, and compassion shine through in her work, highlighting the human impact of war while telling the bigger story beyond the battlefield.
In "Dickey Chapelle Under Fire," the American public can see the world through Dickey's lens for the first time in almost fifty years, with a foreword by Jackie Spinner, former war correspondent for "The Washington Post."

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Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Action
Planning, Leadership, and Programming
Christine Bombaro
American Library Association, 2020

All too often, in a hurried attempt to “catch up,” diversity training can create division among staff or place undue burdens on a handful of employees. Instead, academic libraries need approaches to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) that position these priorities as ongoing institutional and professional goals. This book’s model programs will help academic libraries do exactly that, sharing a variety of initiatives that possess clear goals, demonstrable outcomes, and reproducible strategies. Librarians, administrators, and directors will all benefit from the programs detailed inside, which include such topics as

  • a university library’s community of practice for interactions and learning around DEI;
  • cultural competency training to create more welcoming instruction spaces;
  • student workshops on literature searches that mitigate bias;
  • overcoming the historic tendency to marginalize LGBTQ+ representation in archives;
  • a curriculum and design workshop that moved from discussing social values to embedding them in actions;
  • the founding of a library-led LGBT club for students at a rural community college;
  • a liberal arts college’s retention-boosting program for first-generation students;
  • tailoring a collection and library services to the unique needs of student veterans; and
  • a framework for moving from diversity to equity and inclusion, toward a goal of social justice.

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"Do You Know...?"
The Jazz Repertoire in Action
Robert R. Faulkner and Howard S. Becker
University of Chicago Press, 2009

Every night, somewhere in the world, three or four musicians will climb on stage together. Whether the gig is at a jazz club, a bar, or a bar mitzvah, the performance never begins with a note, but with a question. The trumpet player might turn to the bassist and ask, “Do you know ‘Body and Soul’?”—and from there the subtle craft of playing the jazz repertoire is tested in front of a live audience. These ordinary musicians may never have played together—they may never have met—so how do they smoothly put on a show without getting booed offstage.

In “Do You Know . . . ?” Robert R. Faulkner and Howard S. Becker—both jazz musicians with decades of experience performing—present the view from the bandstand, revealing the array of skills necessary for working musicians to do their jobs. While learning songs from sheet music or by ear helps, the jobbing musician’s lexicon is dauntingly massive: hundreds of thousands of tunes from jazz classics and pop standards to more exotic fare. Since it is impossible for anyone to memorize all of these songs, Faulkner and Becker show that musicians collectively negotiate and improvise their way to a successful performance. Players must explore each others’ areas of expertise, develop an ability to fake their way through unfamiliar territory, and respond to the unpredictable demands of their audience—whether an unexpected gang of polka fanatics or a tipsy father of the bride with an obscure favorite song.

“Do You Know . . . ?” dishes out entertaining stories and sharp insights drawn from the authors’ own experiences and observations as well as interviews with a range of musicians. Faulkner and Becker’s vivid, detailed portrait of the musician at work holds valuable lessons for anyone who has to think on the spot or under a spotlight.


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Eclipse of Action
Tragedy and Political Economy
Richard Halpern
University of Chicago Press, 2017
According to traditional accounts, the history of tragedy is itself tragic: following a miraculous birth in fifth-century Athens and a brilliant resurgence in the early modern period, tragic drama then falls into a marked decline. While disputing the notion that tragedy has died, this wide-ranging study argues that it faces an unprecedented challenge in modern times from an unexpected quarter: political economy.

Since Aristotle, tragedy has been seen as uniquely exhibiting the importance of action for human happiness. Beginning with Adam Smith, however, political economy has claimed that the source of happiness is primarily production. Eclipse of Action examines the tense relations between action and production, doing and making, in playwrights from Aeschylus, Marlowe, Shakespeare, and Milton to Beckett, Arthur Miller, and Sarah Kane. Richard Halpern places these figures in conversation with works by Aristotle, Smith, Hegel, Marx, Hannah Arendt, Georges Bataille, and others in order to trace the long history of the ways in which economic thought and tragic drama interact.

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Ernest Hemingway
Thought in Action
Mark Cirino
University of Wisconsin Press, 2012
Ernest Hemingway’s groundbreaking prose style and examination of timeless themes made him one of the most important American writers of the twentieth century. Yet in Ernest Hemingway: Thought in Action, Mark Cirino observes, “Literary criticism has accused Hemingway of many things but thinking too deeply is not one of them.” Although much has been written about the author’s love of action—hunting, fishing, drinking, bullfighting, boxing, travel, and the moveable feast—Cirino looks at Hemingway’s focus on the modern mind, paralleling the interest in consciousness of such predecessors and contemporaries as Proust, Joyce, Woolf, Faulkner, and Henry James. Hemingway, Cirino demonstrates, probes the ways his character’s minds respond when placed in urgent situations or when damaged by past traumas.
    In Cirino’s analysis of Hemingway’s work through this lens—including such celebrated classics as A Farewell to Arms, The Old Man and the Sea, and “Big Two-Hearted River” and less-appreciated works including Islands in the Stream and “Because I Think Deeper”—an entirely different Hemingway hero emerges: intelligent, introspective, and ruminative.

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The Ethical Condition
Essays on Action, Person, and Value
Michael Lambek
University of Chicago Press, 2015
Written over a thirty-year span, Michael Lambek’s essays in this collection point with definitive force toward a single central truth: ethics is intrinsic to social life. As he shows through rich ethnographic accounts and multiple theoretical traditions, our human condition is at heart an ethical one—we may not always be good or just, but we are always subject to their criteria. Detailing Lambek’s trajectory as one anthropologist thinking deeply throughout a career on the nature of ethical life, the essays accumulate into a vibrant demonstration of the relevance of ethics as a practice and its crucial importance to ethnography, social theory, and philosophy.

Organized chronologically, the essays begin among Malagasy speakers on the island of Mayotte and in northwest Madagascar. Building from ethnographic accounts there, they synthesize Aristotelian notions of practical judgment and virtuous action with Wittgensteinian notions of the ordinariness of ethical life and the importance of language, everyday speech, and ritual in order to understand how ethics are lived. They illustrate the multiple ways in which ethics informs personhood, character, and practice; explore the centrality of judgment, action, and irony to ethical life; and consider the relation of virtue to value. The result is a fully fleshed-out picture of ethics as a deeply rooted aspect of the human experience. 

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Ethics in Action
Case Studies in Archaeological Dilemmas
Chip Colwell-Chanthaphonh
University Press of Colorado, 2008
Based on the Society for American Archaeology’s Annual Ethics Bowl, this SAA Press book is centered on a series of hypothetical case studies that challenge the reader to think through the complexities of archaeological ethics. The volume will benefit undergraduate and graduate students who can either use these cases as a classroom activity or as preparation for the Ethics Bowl, as well as those who are seeking to better understand the ethical predicaments that face the discipline.

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Experts in Action
Transnational Hong Kong–Style Stunt Work and Performance
Lauren Steimer
Duke University Press, 2021
Action movie stars ranging from Jackie Chan to lesser-known stunt women and men like Zoë Bell and Chad Stahelski stun their audiences with virtuosic martial arts displays, physical prowess, and complex fight sequences. Their performance styles originate from action movies that emerged in the industrial environment of 1980s Hong Kong. In Experts in Action Lauren Steimer examines how Hong Kong--influenced cinema aesthetics and stunt techniques have been taken up, imitated, and reinvented in other locations and production contexts in Hollywood, New Zealand, and Thailand. Foregrounding the transnational circulation of Hong Kong--influenced films, television shows, stars, choreographers, and stunt workers, she shows how stunt workers like Chan, Bell, and others combine techniques from martial arts, dance, Peking opera, and the history of movie and television stunting practices to create embodied performances that are both spectacular and, sometimes, rendered invisible. By describing the training, skills, and labor involved in stunt work as well as the location-dependent material conditions and regulations that impact it, Steimer illuminates the expertise of the workers whose labor is indispensable to some of the world's most popular movies.

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Faith in Action
Religion, Race, and Democratic Organizing in America
Richard L. Wood
University of Chicago Press, 2002
Over the past fifteen years, associations throughout the U.S. have organized citizens around issues of equality and social justice, often through local churches. But in contrast to President Bush's vision of faith-based activism, in which groups deliver social services to the needy, these associations do something greater. Drawing on institutions of faith, they reshape public policies that neglect the disadvantaged.

To find out how this faith-based form of community organizing succeeds, Richard L. Wood spent several years working with two local groups in Oakland, California—the faith-based Pacific Institute for Community Organization and the race-based Center for Third World Organizing. Comparing their activist techniques and achievements, Wood argues that the alternative cultures and strategies of these two groups give them radically different access to community ties and social capital.

Creative and insightful, Faith in Action shows how community activism and religious organizations can help build a more just and democratic future for all Americans.

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Feminist Reflections on Childhood
A History and Call to Action
Penny A. Weiss
Temple University Press, 2021

In Feminist Reflections on Childhood, Penny Weiss rediscovers the radically feminist tradition of advocating for the liberatory treatment of youth. Weiss looks at both historical and contemporary feminists to understand what issues surrounding the inequality experienced by both women and children were important to the authors as feminist activists and thinkers. She uses the writings of Mary Wollstonecraft, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Simone de Beauvoir to show early feminist arguments for the improved status and treatment of youth. Weiss also shows how Charlotte Perkins Gilman, a socialist feminist, and Emma Goldman, an anarchist feminist, differently understood and re-visioned children’s lives, as well as how children continue to show up on feminist agendas and in manifestos that demand better conditions for children’s lives.

Moving to contemporary theory, Feminist Reflections on Childhood also looks at how feminist disability theory is well-positioned to recognize the voices of children, and how queer theory provides lessons on contemporary trends that provide visions and strategies for more constructive adult-child relations. Weiss, who includes her own experiences as a mother and foster mother throughout the book, closes her distinctively feminist takes on childhood with a consideration of speculative fiction stories that offer examples of what feminists think makes childhood (un)livable.


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From Text to Action
Essays in Hermeneutics, II
Paul Ricoeur, Translated from the French by Kathleen Blamey and John B. Thompson, Foreword to the new edition by Richard Kearney
Northwestern University Press, 2007
Incredible originality of thought in areas as vast as phenomenology, religion, hermeneutics, psychoanalysis, intersubjectivity, language, Marxism, and structuralism has made Paul Ricoeur one of the philosophical giants of the twentieth century. The way in which Ricoeur approaches these themes makes his works relevant to the reader today: he writes with honesty and depth of insight into the core of a problem, and his ability to mark for future thought the very path of philosophical inquiry is nearly unmatched. 

From Text to Action is an essential companion to the classic The Conflict of Interpretations. Here, Ricoeur continues and extends his project of constructing a general theory of interpretation, positioning his work in relation to its philosophical background: Hegel, Husserl, Gadamer, and Weber. He also responds to contemporary figures like K. O. Apel and Jürgen Habermas, connecting his own theorization of ideology to their critique of ideology. 

This new edition includes a foreword by Richard Kearney. It and other new editions of Ricoeur's texts published by Northwestern University Press have joined the canon of contemporary continental philosophy and continue to contribute to emergent discussions in the twenty-first century. 

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From Text to Action
Essays in Hermeneutics, II
Paul Ricoeur
Northwestern University Press, 1991
With his writings on phenomenology, psychoanalysis, Marxism, ideology, and religion, Paul Ricoeur has single-handedly redefined and revitalized the hermeneutic tradition. From Text to Action is an essential companion to the now classic The Conflict of Interpretations. Here, Ricoeur continues and extends his project of constructing a general theory of interpretation, positioning his work in relation to its own philosophical background: Hegel, Husserl, Gadamer, and Weber. He also responds to contemporary figures like K.O. Apel and Jürgen Habermas, connecting his own theorization of ideology to their version of ideology critique.

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Gadget Consciousness
Collective Thought, Will and Action in the Age of Social Media
Joss Hands
Pluto Press, 2019
What impact does our relentless fixation on the gadget have on the struggle for new kinds of solidarity, political articulation, and intelligence? In this groundbreaking study, Joss Hands explores the new political and social forces that are emerging in the age of social media, and examines how they are transforming our individual and class consciousness. Exploring a range of manifestations in the digital commons, he investigates what forms digital solidarity can take and asks how the communisms of the past might shape the solidarities of the future.

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Generation at the Crossroads
Apathy and Action on the American Campus
Loeb, Paul R
Rutgers University Press, 1994

Challenging prevailing media stereotypes, Generation at the Crossroads explores the beliefs and choices of the students who came of age in the 1980s and 1990s. For seven years, at over a hundred campuses in thirty states, Paul Loeb asked students about the values they held. He examines their concepts of responsibility, the links they draw between present and future, and how they view themselves in relation to the larger human community in which they live. He brings us a range of voices, from "I'm not that kind of person," to "I had to take a stand." Loeb looks at how the rest of us can serve young people as better role models, and give them courage and vision to help build a better world.

This insightful book explores the culture of withdrawal that dominated American campuses through most of the eighties. He locates its roots in historical ignorance, relentless individualism, mistrust of social movements, and a general isolation from urgent realities. He examines why a steadily increasing minority has begun to take on critical public issues, whether environmental activism, apartheid, hunger and homelessness, affordable education, or racial and sexual equity. Loeb looks at individuals who have overcome precisely the barriers he has described, and how their journeys can become models. The generational choices he explores will shape our common future.


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George Washington
A Man of Action
John P. Kaminski
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2017
Perhaps no other person could ever achieve the preeminent position in American history and culture occupied by George Washington. Born in 1732, Washington’s life–long commitment to self-improvement and discipline helped him become a legend in his own lifetime. Whether as a statesman, military man, or America’s first president, Washington created a legacy that has scarcely diminished in over two centuries. Yet the passage of time and the superlatives reserved for Washington have knit together and made it difficult to find the real man. Historian and editor John P. Kaminski has amassed an extraordinary body of quotations by and about George Washington that brings us closer to the essence of this great leader. This collection paints an intricate picture of the man who Henry 'Lighthorse' Lee of Virginia eulogized as: "First in war, first in peace, first in the hearts of his countrymen."

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Happiness in Action
A Philosopher’s Guide to the Good Life
Adam Adatto Sandel
Harvard University Press, 2022

“Here, at last, is a book about what happiness really means, and why it often eludes us in our stressed-out, always-on lives.”
—Arianna Huffington, Founder and CEO, Thrive

A young philosopher and Guinness World Record holder in pull-ups argues that the key to happiness is not goal-driven striving but forging a life that integrates self-possession, friendship, and engagement with nature.

What is the meaning of the good life? In this strikingly original book, Adam Adatto Sandel draws on ancient and modern thinkers and on two seemingly disparate pursuits of his own, philosophy and fitness, to offer a surprising answer to this age-old human question.

Sandel argues that finding fulfillment is not about attaining happiness, conceived as a state of mind, or even about accomplishing one’s greatest goals. Instead, true happiness comes from immersing oneself in activity that is intrinsically rewarding. The source of meaning, he suggests, derives from the integrity or “wholeness” of self that we forge throughout the journey of life.

At the heart of Sandel’s account of life as a journey are three virtues that get displaced and distorted by our goal-oriented striving: self-possession, friendship, and engagement with nature. Sandel offers illuminating and counterintuitive accounts of these virtues, revealing how they are essential to a happiness that lasts.

To illustrate the struggle of living up to these virtues, Sandel looks to literature, film, and television, and also to his own commitments and adventures. A focal point of his personal narrative is a passion that, at first glance, is as narrow a goal-oriented pursuit as one can imagine: training to set the Guinness World Record for Most Pull-Ups in One Minute. Drawing on his own experiences, Sandel makes philosophy accessible for readers who, in their own infinitely various ways, struggle with the tension between goal-oriented striving and the embrace of life as a journey.


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Illustrative Learning Experiences
University High School in Action
Emma Birkmaier
University of Minnesota Press, 1952
Illustrative Learning Experiences was first published in 1952. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.This volume is number 2 in the Modern School Practices series; established in 1950 by the College of Education at the University of Minnesota, and the Bureau of Educational Research. The series is designed as a replacement to two earlier series: the Series on Individualization of Instruction and the Modern School Curriculum series.The University High School was established at the University of Minnesota in 1908 as a laboratory center for the College of Education. This volume presents the activities of the High School as an environment of observation, study, and experimentation. Topics discussed include units in social studies, chemistry, business, mathematics, foreign languages, and language arts.

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The Image of Africa
British Ideas and Action, 1780-1850, Volume I
Philip D. Curtin
University of Wisconsin Press, 1973

In this encyclopedic work of intellectual history, Philip D. Curtain sought to discover the British image of Africa for the years 1780–1850.


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The Image of Africa
British Ideas and Action, 1780-1850, Volume II
Philip D. Curtin
University of Wisconsin Press, 1973

In this encyclopedic work of intellectual history, Philip D. Curtain sought to discover the British image of Africa for the years 1780–1850.


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Implementing for Results
Your Strategic Plan in Action
Sandra Nelson
American Library Association, 2009

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Intercultural Skills in Action
An International Student's Guide to College and University Life in the U.S.
Darren LaScotte and Bethany Peters
University of Michigan Press, 2021
Despite the increasing diversification of U.S. higher education, without intentional curricular planning by faculty, international students may not experience intercultural interactions due to varying degrees of disinterest, discomfort, or anxiety—and the interactions they do have may be superficial. These challenges could be potentially mitigated by an intentional curriculum that complements and enhances English language instruction, such as Intercultural Skills in Action.

Although traditional ESL/EFL textbooks have primarily introduced cultural topics at a knowledge level only, this textbook is designed to create meaningful opportunities for students to reflect on and practice intercultural skills in ways that are relatable in their daily lives and that can lead to a more satisfying U.S. academic experience.

Each unit opens with a discovery activity that serves as a springboard for the unit and introduces the topic in an engaging way. Chapters feature academic content that expands knowledge of intercultural skills, plus opportunities for students to pause and reflect on how to apply what they are learning to their own intercultural experiences. The activities ask students to respond with short written reflections and practice oral skills through discussion in pairs and small groups. Each unit closes with an activity that requires students to use higher-order thinking skills to create, evaluate, and/or analyze cultural information gathered from college and university settings in the form of surveys, interviews, observations, or internet research and then report on what they have learned. 

The intended audiences for this book are international students studying in IEPs, in university bridge or pathway programs, or at colleges and universities in the United States. It may also be used by new-student orientation programs or by student services offices that provide intercultural training for students, staff, and faculty who work with international students.


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Irony in Action
Anthropology, Practice, and the Moral Imagination
Edited by James Fernandez and Mary Taylor Huber
University of Chicago Press, 2001
Irony today extends beyond its classification as a figure of speech and is increasingly recognized as one of the major modes of human experience. This idea of irony as an integral force in social life is at the center of this provocative book. The result of a meeting where anthropologists were invited to explore the politics of irony and the moral responsibilities that accompany its recognition, this book is one of the first to lend an anthropological perspective to this contemporary phenomenon.

The first group of essays explores the limits to irony's liberating qualities from the constrained use of irony in congressional hearings to its reactive presence amid widening disparities of wealth despite decades of world development. The second section presents irony's more positive dimensions through an array of examples such as the use of irony by Chinese writers and Irish humorists. Framed by the editors' theoretical introduction to the issues posed by irony and responses to the essays by two literary scholars, Irony in Action is a timely contribution in the contemporary reinvention of anthropology.

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John Donne’s Lyrics
The Eloquence of Action
Arnold Stein
University of Minnesota Press, 1962

John Donne's Lyrics was first published in 1962. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

Combining modern insight with historical perspective, Professor Stein offers a fresh interpretation of Donne's lyric poems. His method is cumulative; it includes cross references to the religious writing, analysis of individual poems, and their relationship to larger patterns which reflect Donne's poetic mind. Among the specific problems he deals with are those which concern metaphor, symbol, myth, wit, "fictions." "negative theology," consciousness-and-simplicity, "binary" and "ternary" form in poetry, meter and meaning, rationalism and affective language, the visual and the auditory.

Professor Stein demonstrates that to gain insight into the integrity of Donne's poetic mind it is necessary to take seriously two propositions: that Donne is a poetic logician endowed with a talent and love for the unity of imaginative form; and that Donne's poetry, though it is not simple, nevertheless deeply and persistently engages important problems which concern "simplicity." In one of his sermons, Donne wrote: "The eloquence of inferiours is in words, the eloquence of superiours is in action." Professor Stein maintains that in his best poems Donne aspires to the eloquence of action and never to the eloquence of words.

Although the study is focused on Donne's lyrics, the interpretation is based on a long study of all the poems and the prose and on background and foreground materials. In a postscript the author discusses Donne's "modern career."


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Judgment and Action
Fragments toward a History
Edited by Vivasvan Soni and Thomas Pfau
Northwestern University Press, 2018
Written by theologians, literary scholars, political theorists, classicists, and philosophers, the essays in Judgment and Action address the growing sense that certain key concepts in humanistic scholarship have become suspect, if not downright unintelligible, amid the current plethora of critical methods. These essays aim to reassert the normative force of judgment and action, two concepts at the very core of literary analysis, systematic theology, philosophy, ethics, aesthetics, and other disciplines.

Interpretation is essential to every humanistic discipline, and every interpretation is an act of judgment. Yet the work of interpretation and judgment has been called into question by contemporary methods in the humanities, which incline either toward contextual determination of meaning or toward the suspension of judgment altogether. Action is closely related to judgment and interpretation and like them, it has been rendered questionable. An action is not simply the performance of a deed but requires the deed’s intelligibility, which can be secured only through interpretation and judgment.

Organized into four broad themes—interiority/contemplation, ethics, politics/community, and aesthetics/image—the aim of this broad-ranging and insightful collection is to illuminate the histories of judgment and action, identify critical sites from which rethinking them may begin, clarify how they came to be challenged, and relocate them within a broader intellectual-historical trajectory that renders them intelligible. 

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Labor Markets in Action
Essays in Empirical Economics
Richard B. Freeman
Harvard University Press, 1989

Economists rarely perform controlled experiments, so how do they find out how markets function? In what ways does empirical economics contribute to our understanding of important and controversial social issues? What has been discovered about the operation of the labor markets in which nearly all of us participate? Labor Markets in Action addresses these questions in lively style. The topics cover issues of deep social concern, encompassing the jobs and wages of college graduates, discrimination and inner-city youth, homelessness, unionism, and the differences between U. S. labor market institutions and those of other developed countries, including Japan.

A thoughtful introduction to each essay reveals the human side of research on these controversial issues. Freeman lays out five guiding principles for empirical social science: to analyze situations in which markets undergo sharp exogenous shocks, creating "natural experiments"; to focus on fundamental first-order economic principles and behavior rather than on abstract fine points; to probe empirical findings with different data sets and alternative specifications; to gather new information from survey research rather than rely on existing data sets; to discuss issues and interpretations with workers, labor leaders, businessmen, and other market participants. With chapters that range from broad overviews of research to essays employing detailed statistical techniques, this book will appeal to economists, students, and policymakers concerned with how labor markets function and how economists go about their business of discovery without laboratory controls.


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Learning in Action
Designing Successful Graduate Student Work Experiences in Academic Libraries
Arianne Hartsell-Gundy
Assoc of College & Research Libraries, 2022

How do you supervise a graduate student working in a library—and not just adequately, but well? What is a valuable and meaningful work experience? How can libraries design more equitable and ethical positions for students?

Learning in Action: Designing Successful Graduate Student Work Experiences in Academic Libraries provides practical, how-to guidance on creating and managing impactful programs as well as meaningful personal experiences for students and library staff in academic libraries. Fourteen chapters are divided into four thorough sections:

  • Creating Access Pathways
  • Developing, Running, and Evolving Programs for LIS Students
  • Working with Graduate Students without an LIS Background: Mutual Opportunities for Growth
  • Centering the Person 
Chapters cover topics including developing experiential learning opportunities for online students; cocreated cocurricular graduate learning experiences; an empathy-driven approach to crafting an internship; self-advocacy and mentorship in LIS graduate student employment; and sharing perspectives on work and identity between a graduate student and an academic library manager. Throughout the book you’ll find “Voices from the Field,” profiles that showcase the voices and reflections of the graduate students themselves, recent graduates, and managers.
Learning in Action brings together a range of topics and perspectives from authors of diverse backgrounds and institutions to offer practical inspiration and a framework for creating meaningful graduate student work experiences at your institutions.

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Life and Action
Elementary Structures of Practice and Practical Thought
Michael Thompson
Harvard University Press, 2012

Any sound practical philosophy must be clear on practical concepts—concepts, in particular, of life, action, and practice. This clarity is Michael Thompson’s aim in his ambitious work. In Thompson’s view, failure to comprehend the structures of thought and judgment expressed in these concepts has disfigured modern moral philosophy, rendering it incapable of addressing the larger questions that should be its focus.

In three investigations, Thompson considers life, action, and practice successively, attempting to exhibit these interrelated concepts as pure categories of thought, and to show how a proper exposition of them must be Aristotelian in character. He contends that the pure character of these categories, and the Aristotelian forms of reflection necessary to grasp them, are systematically obscured by modern theoretical philosophy, which thus blocks the way to the renewal of practical philosophy. His work recovers the possibility, within the tradition of analytic philosophy, of hazarding powerful generalities, and of focusing on the larger issues—like “life”—that have the power to revive philosophy.

As an attempt to relocate crucial concepts from moral philosophy and the theory of action into what might be called the metaphysics of life, this original work promises to reconfigure a whole sector of philosophy. It is a work that any student of contemporary philosophy must grapple with.


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Living the Truth
A Theory of Action
Klaus Demmer, MSC. Translated by Brian McNeil. Foreword by James F. Keenan, SJ
Georgetown University Press, 2010

How is moral theology related to pastoral theology? In this first English translation of Living the Truth, Klaus Demmer answers this question by offering a complete theory of action. Its crucial element is truthfulness, which Demmer claims is a basic attitude that must be translated concretely into our individual decisions. Demmer demonstrates that the demand for truthfulness offers a critical corrective to the usual praxis whereby ethical norms are formulated. This has significant consequences for every area of ethical directives, including questions about celibacy and partnerships.

Demmer moves away from the act-centered morality that dominates the neo-Scholastic manuals of moral theology. His concern is to show how our actions embody and carry out a more original anthropological project. Not only does this anthropological project condition our insights into goods and values, it provides the criteria by which our actions are judged morally. This book will be welcomed by all who are looking for ethical norms, and by all whose task it is to formulate such norms.


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The Logic of Decision and Action
Nicholas Rescher
University of Pittsburgh Press, 1967
The four main essays in this volume investigate new sectors of the theory of decision, preference, act-characteristics, and action analysis. Herbert A. Simon applies tools developed in the theory of decision-making to the logic of action, and thereby develops a novel concept of heuristic power. Adapting ideas from utility and decision theory, Nicholas Rescher proposes a logic of preference by which conflicting theories proposed by G. H. von Wright, R. M. Chisholm, and others can be systematized. Donald Davidson discusses difficulties in specifying the structure of action sentences to elucidate how their meaning depends on that structure. G. H. von Wright devises a method for describing each “state of the world” that results from an action, in a revision of his own earlier work. Additionally, a study of the logic of norms by Alan Ross Anderson is presented as an appendix, along with an appendix by Rescher outlining the aspects of action.

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Making Black Scientists
A Call to Action
Marybeth Gasman and Thai-Huy Nguyen
Harvard University Press, 2019

Americans have access to some of the best science education in the world, but too often black students are excluded from these opportunities. This essential book by leading voices in the field of education reform offers an inspiring vision of how America’s universities can guide a new generation of African Americans to success in science.

Educators, research scientists, and college administrators have all called for a new commitment to diversity in the sciences, but most universities struggle to truly support black students in these fields. Historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) are different, though. Marybeth Gasman, widely celebrated as an education-reform visionary, and Thai-Huy Nguyen show that many HBCUs have proven adept at helping their students achieve in the sciences. There is a lot we can learn from these exemplary schools.

Gasman and Nguyen explore ten innovative schools that have increased the number of black students studying science and improved those students’ performance. Educators on these campuses have a keen sense of their students’ backgrounds and circumstances, familiarity that helps their science departments avoid the high rates of attrition that plague departments elsewhere. The most effective science programs at HBCUs emphasize teaching when considering whom to hire and promote, encourage students to collaborate rather than compete, and offer more opportunities for black students to find role models among both professors and peers.

Making Black Scientists reveals the secrets to these institutions’ striking successes and shows how other colleges and universities can follow their lead. The result is a bold new agenda for institutions that want to better serve African American students.


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Moment of Action
Riddles of Cinematic Performance
Pomerance, Murray
Rutgers University Press, 2016
There are hundreds of biographies of filmstars and dozens of scholarly works on acting in general. But what about the ephemeral yet indelible moments when, for a brief scene or even just a single shot, an actor’s performance triggers a visceral response in the viewer? 
Moment of Action delves into the mysteries of screen performance, revealing both the acting techniques and the technical apparatuses that coalesce in an instant of cinematic alchemy to create movie gold. Considering a range of acting styles while examining films as varied as Bringing Up Baby, Psycho, The Red Shoes, Godzilla, and The Bourne Identity, Murray Pomerance traces the common dynamics that work to structure the complex relationship between the act of cinematic performance and its eventual perception.  
Mining the spaces where subjective and objective analyses merge, Pomerance offers both a deeply personal account of film viewership and a detailed examination of the intuitive gestures, orchestrated movements, and backstage maneuvers that go into creating those phenomenal moments onscreen. Moment of Action takes us on an innovative exploration of the nexus at which the actor’s keen skills spark and kindle the audience’s receptive energies.

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Motive and Intention
An Essay in the Appreciation of Action
Roy Lawrence
Northwestern University Press, 1972
Motive and Intention is a critique of certain conceptual foundations of the description and judgment of human action. Drawing on sources such as narrative history, Roy Lawrence analyzes examples of such assessments and provides and independent base for appraising familiar and tenacious theoretical presumptions. In so doing he illuminates many persistent issues of common interest in the social science

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Open Praxis, Open Access
Digital Scholarship In Action
Darren Chase
American Library Association, 2020

Many in the world of scholarship share the conviction that open access will be the engine of transformation leading to more culture, more research, more discovery, and more solutions to small and big problems. This collection brings together librarians, scholars, practitioners, policymakers, and thinkers to take measure of the open access movement. The editors meld critical essays, research, and case studies to offer an authoritative exploration of

  • the concept of openness in scholarship, with an overview of how it is evolving in the US, Canada, Europe, and Asia;
  • open access publishing, including funding models and the future of library science journals;
  • the state of institutional repositories;
  • Open Educational Resources (OER) at universities and a consortium, in subject areas ranging from literary studies to textbooks; and
  • open science, open data, and a pilot data catalog for raising the visibility of protected data.

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Organic Writing Assessment
Dynamic Criteria Mapping in Action
Bob Broad, Linda Adler-Kassner, Barry Alford, Jane Detweiler, Heidi Estrem, Susanmarie Harrington, Maureen McBride, Eric Stalions, and Scott Weeden
Utah State University Press, 2009
Educators strive to create “assessment cultures” in which they integrate evaluation into teaching and learning and match assessment methods with best instructional practice. But how do teachers and administrators discover and negotiate the values that underlie their evaluations? Bob Broad’s 2003 volume, What We Really Value, introduced dynamic criteria mapping (DCM) as a method for eliciting locally-informed, context-sensitive criteria for writing assessments. The impact of DCM on assessment practice is beginning to emerge as more and more writing departments and programs adopt, adapt, or experiment with DCM approaches.

For the authors of Organic Writing Assessment, the DCM experience provided not only an authentic assessment of their own programs, but a nuanced language through which they can converse in the always vexing, potentially divisive realm of assessment theory and practice. Of equal interest are the adaptations these writers invented for Broad’s original process, to make DCM even more responsive to local needs and exigencies.

Organic Writing Assessment represents an important step in the evolution of writing assessment in higher education. This volume documents the second generation of an assessment model that is regarded as scrupulously consistent with current theory; it shows DCM’s flexibility, and presents an informed discussion of its limits and its potentials.

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Performance Projections
Film and the Body in Action
Stephen Barber
Reaktion Books, 2014
Film does far more than document performance—it actively recreates the time and space of performance and overhauls its rapport with the viewer’s eye and body. The first book to look in-depth at the intersection of film and performance in relation to issues and theories of space, Performance Projections travels from the origins of film in Europe and the United States to the world of digital media today, exploring the dynamic relationship between these vitally connected ideas.
Drawing from a wide range of examples—including filmic depictions of German and Japanese and Chinese performance art and street cultures—Stephen Barber argues that the act of filming has the power to draw distinctively performative dimensions out of unruly human gatherings, such as riots and political protests, while also accentuating the outlandish and aberrant aspects of performance. Spanning the history of film, Barber moves from performance in film’s formative years, such as Edward Muybridge’s work in the 1880s, to contemporary performance artworks—for example, Rabih Mroué’s investigations of the often lethal camera phone filming of snipers in Syrian cities. Proposing that the future conception of filmed performance needs to be radically expanded in response to the transformations of digital film cultures, Performance Projections is a critical addition to the literature on both film and art history.

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Pornography, the Theory
What Utilitarianism Did to Action
Frances Ferguson
University of Chicago Press, 2004
Pornography first developed in western Europe during the late eighteenth century in tandem with the rise of utilitarianism, the philosophical position that stresses the importance of something's usefulness over its essence. Through incisive readings of Sade, Flaubert, Lawrence, and Bret Easton Ellis, Frances Ferguson here shows how pornography—like utilitarian social structures—diverts our attention from individual identities to actions and renders more clearly the social value of such actions through concrete literary representations.

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Science in Action
How to Follow Scientists and Engineers through Society
Bruno Latour
Harvard University Press, 1987

Science and technology have immense authority and influence in our society, yet their working remains little understood. The conventional perception of science in Western societies has been modified in recent years by the work of philosophers, sociologists and historians of science. In this book Bruno Latour brings together these different approaches to provide a lively and challenging analysis of science, demonstrating how social context and technical content are both essential to a proper understanding of scientific activity. Emphasizing that science can only be understood through its practice, the author examines science and technology in action: the role of scientific literature, the activities of laboratories, the institutional context of science in the modern world, and the means by which inventions and discoveries become accepted. From the study of scientific practice he develops an analysis of science as the building of networks. Throughout, Bruno Latour shows how a lively and realistic picture of science in action alters our conception of not only the natural sciences but also the social sciences and the sociology of knowledge in general.

This stimulating book, drawing on a wealth of examples from a wide range of scientific activities, will interest all philosophers, sociologists and historians of science, scientists and engineers, and students of the philosophy of social science and the sociology of knowledge.


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See You in the Streets
Art, Action, and Remembering the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire
Ruth Sergel
University of Iowa Press, 2016
2017 American Book Award Winner from the Before Columbus Foundation 

In 1911, a fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City took the lives of 146 workers, most of them young immigrant women and girls. Their deaths galvanized a movement for social and economic justice then, but today’s laborers continue to battle dire working conditions. How can we bring the lessons of the Triangle fire back into practice today? For artist Ruth Sergel, the answer was to fuse art, activism, and collective memory to create a large-scale public commemoration that invites broad participation and incites civic engagement. See You in the Streets showcases her work.

It all began modestly in 2004 with Chalk, an invitation to all New Yorkers to remember the 146 victims of the fire by inscribing their names and ages in chalk in front of their former homes. This project inspired Sergel to found the Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition, a broad alliance of artists and activists, universities and unions—more than 250 partners nationwide—to mark the 2011 centennial of the infamous blaze. Putting the coalition together and figuring what to do and how to do it were not easy. This book provides a lively account of the unexpected partnerships, false steps, joyous collective actions, and sustainability of such large public works. Much more than an object lesson from the past, See You in the Streets offers an exuberant perspective on building a social art practice and doing public history through argument and agitation, creativity and celebration with an engaged public. 

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Seedtime of Reform
American Social Service and Social Action, 1918-1933
Clarke A. Chambers
University of Minnesota Press, 1963

Seedtime of Reform was first published in 1963. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

This is a detailed history of the social welfare movement in the United States during the period from the end of World War I to the inauguration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, an era which most historians characterize as one of normalcy and reaction. In his book Professor Chambers demonstrates that this was actually a seedtime of reform, a period when the groundwork was laid for many of the sweeping social changes which were to take place under the New Deal.

While it is true, as the author points out, that the years from 1918 to 1933 were not hospitable to the cause of reform, it was during these years that reform leaders and welfare workers (and the associations and agencies they directed) elaborated new theories and programs of action to alleviate, prevent, and overcome certain persisting social ills. Although little was constructively achieved until new political leadership, operating in the context of acute and prolonged economic crisis, acted in the 1930s, much of what we identify as the New Deal was rooted not only in prewar progressivism but in the research, agitation, and welfare services of the 1920s as well. Reformers and welfare workers made especially significant contributions in the areas of housing, social security, public works, federal responsibility for dependent groups in society, and working conditions.


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Shaping the Campus Conversation on Student Learning and Experience
Activating the Results of Assessment in Action
Karen Brown
Assoc of College & Research Libraries, 2018

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Society in Action
The Theory of Social Becoming
Piotr Sztompka
University of Chicago Press, 1991
In Society in Action, Piotr Sztompka sets forth a highly topical contribution to central theoretical debates of contemporary sociology. Taking the idea and practice of collective mobilization as his theme, Sztompka argues that modern institutions, particularly of late, are characterized by an increasing awareness of collective empowerment. The most obvious concrete expression of this phenomenon, as Sztompka makes clear, is the rise of a diversity of active social movements such as those which dramatically transformed Europe in the 1980s, from the birth of Solidarity in 1980 to the 1989 "Autumn of Nations."

Sztompka connects the interpretations of such collective activity to a wider grasp of the nature of social action. The result is a comprehensive and original theory of social change which focuses on the self-transforming influence on society of its members' striving for freedom, autonomy, and self-fulfillment. He develops his theory by means of a general concept of "social becoming," the roots of which he traces to the early romantic and humanist work of Karl Marx and his followers and to two influential sociological schools of today, the theory of agency and historical sociology.

Sztompka situates his theory midway between the rigid determinism of social totalities and the unbridled voluntarism of free individuals. Social change, he demonstrates, can be understood neither as the outcome of individual actions taken alone nor as structurally determined actions. Instead, he confers upon social organizations and movements a "self-transcending" quality: they express human agency yet, by virtue of their active character, are quite often able to achieve unpredictable outcomes.

Throughout his analysis of social movements and revolutions in history, Sztompka emphasizes the dynamics of spontaneous social change generated from below—a theoretical testimony to the rapid and fundamental social change in Eastern Europe in recent history. Against the fashions of postmodernist malaise, boredom, and disenchantment, his theory of social becoming expresses the possibility of emancipation, of change leading to positive gains. His work registers a belief in progress, not inevitably gained, but its attainment fully dependent upon the creativity and optimism of an active citizenry.

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Talking to Action
Art, Pedagogy, and Activism in the Americas
Bill Kelley, Jr. with Rebecca Zamora
School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 2017
Talking to Action: Art, Pedagogy, and Activism in the Americas is the first publication to bring together scholarship, critical essays, and documentation of collaborative community-based art making by researchers from across the American hemisphere.  The comprehensive volume is a compendium of texts, analysis, and research documents from the Talking to Action research and exhibition platform, part of the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA initiative, a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles.  While the field of social practice has had an increasingly high profile within contemporary art discourse, this book documents artists who have been under-recognized because they do not show in traditional gallery or museum contexts and are often studied by specialists in other disciplines, particularly within the Latin American context. Talking to Action: Art, Pedagogy, and Activism in the Americas addresses the absence of a publication documenting scholarly exchange between research sites throughout the hemisphere and is intended for those interested in community-based practices operating within the intersection of art, activism, and the social sciences.

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Talking to Action
Spanish Language Edition
Bill Kelley, Jr. with Rebecca Zamora
School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 2017
Talking to Action: Art, Pedagogy, and Activism in the Americas is the first publication to bring together scholarship, critical essays, and documentation of collaborative community-based art making by researchers from across the American hemisphere.  The comprehensive volume is a compendium of texts, analysis, and research documents from the Talking to Action research and exhibition platform, part of the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA initiative, a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles.  While the field of Social Practice has had an increasingly high profile within contemporary art discourse, this book documents artists who have been under-recognized because they do not show in traditional gallery or museum contexts and are often studied by specialists in other disciplines, particularly within the Latin American context. Talking to Action: Art, Pedagogy, and Activism in the Americas, addresses the absence of a publication documenting scholarly exchange between research sites throughout the hemisphere and is intended for those interested in community-based practices operating within the intersection of art, activism, and the social sciences.

This is the Spanish language edition.

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This Book Is an Action
Feminist Print Culture and Activist Aesthetics
Edited by Jaime Harker and Cecilia Konchar Farr
University of Illinois Press, 2016
The Women's Liberation Movement held a foundational belief in the written word's power to incite social change. In this new collection, Jaime Harker and Cecilia Konchar Farr curate essays that reveal how second-wave feminists embraced this potential with a vengeance. The authors in This Book Is an Action investigate the dynamic print culture that emerged as the feminist movement reawakened in the late 1960s. The works created by women shined a light on taboo topics and offered inspiring accounts of personal transformation. Yet, as the essayists reveal, the texts represented something far greater: a distinct and influential American literary renaissance. On the one hand, feminists took control of the process by building a network of publishers and distributors owned and operated by women. On the other, women writers threw off convention to venture into radical and experimental forms, poetry, and genre storytelling, and in so doing created works that raised the consciousness of a generation. Examining feminist print culture from its structures and systems to defining texts by Margaret Atwood and Alice Walker, This Book Is an Action suggests untapped possibilities for the critical and aesthetic analysis of the diverse range of literary production during feminism's second wave.

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To Act, To Do, To Perform
Drama and the Phenomenology of Action
Alice Rayner
University of Michigan Press, 1994
A philosophical inquiry into how action is constituted by language, materiality, and performance

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Transient Literacies in Action
Composing with the Mobile Surround
Stacey Pigg
University Press of Colorado, 2020

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Up Against the Real
Black Mask from Art to Action
Nadja Millner-Larsen
University of Chicago Press, 2023
A history of 1960s activist art group Black Mask.
With Up Against the Real, Nadja Millner-Larsen offers the first comprehensive study of the group Black Mask and its acrimonious relationship to the New York art world of the 1960s. Cited as pioneers of now-common protest aesthetics, the group’s members employed incendiary modes of direct action against racism, colonialism, and the museum system. They shut down the Museum of Modern Art, fired blanks during a poetry reading, stormed the Pentagon in an antiwar protest, sprayed cow’s blood at the secretary of state, and dumped garbage into the fountain at Lincoln Center. Black Mask published a Dadaist broadside until 1968, when it changed its name to Up Against the Wall Motherfucker (after line in a poem by Amiri Baraka) and came to classify itself as “a street gang with analysis.” American activist Abbie Hoffman described the group as “the middle-class nightmare . . . an anti-media phenomenon simply because their name could not be printed.”
Up Against the Real examines how and why the group ultimately rejected art in favor of what its members deemed “real” political action. Exploring this notorious example of cultural activism that rose from the ruins of the avant-garde, Millner-Larsen makes a critical intervention in our understanding of political art.

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The Urban Crisis
Linking Research to Action
Burton Weisbrod and James C. Worthy
Northwestern University Press, 1997
While the problems facing our cities increase in number and magnitude, there are few coordinated mechanisms in place for effecting change. In an effort to bridge existing gaps in communication and information, Burton A. Weisbrod and James C. Worthy, in conjunction with Northwestern University's Center for Urban Affairs and Policy Research, organized a conference to address these issues. The Urban Crisis collects the papers from this conference, opening a dialogue between academicians and practitioners and offering a blueprint for improving both the process and the substance of policy.

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Utpaladeva on the Power of Action
A First Edition, Annotated Translation and Study of Īśvarapratyabhijñāvivṛti, Chapter 2.1
Isabelle Ratié
Harvard University Press
Utpaladeva on the Power of Action provides the first critical edition, annotated translation, and study of one of the chapters of the Recognition of the Lord, a landmark in the history of nondual Śaivism by the Utpaladeva, that were recently recovered from marginal annotations in manuscripts of other commentaries on Utpaladeva’s treatise.

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Voice, Choice, and Action
The Potential of Young Citizens to Heal Democracy
Felton Earls and Mary Carlson
Harvard University Press, 2020

Compiling decades of fieldwork, two acclaimed scholars offer strategies for strengthening democracies by nurturing the voices of children and encouraging public awareness of their role as citizens.

Voice, Choice, and Action is the fruit of the extraordinary personal and professional partnership of a psychiatrist and a neurobiologist whose research and social activism have informed each other for the last thirty years. Inspired by the 1989 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Felton Earls and Mary Carlson embarked on a series of international studies that would recognize the voice of children. In Romania they witnessed the consequences of infant institutionalization under the Ceaușescu regime. In Brazil they encountered street children who had banded together to advocate effectively for themselves. In Chicago Earls explored the origins of prosocial and antisocial behavior with teenagers. Children all over the world demonstrated an unappreciated but powerful interest in the common good.

On the basis of these experiences, Earls and Carlson mounted a rigorous field study in Moshi, Tanzania, which demonstrated that young citizens could change attitudes about HIV/AIDS and mobilize their communities to confront the epidemic. The program, outlined in this book, promoted children’s communicative and reasoning capacities, guiding their growth as deliberative citizens. The program’s success in reducing stigma and promoting universal testing for HIV exceeded all expectations.

Here in vivid detail are the science, ethics, and everyday practice of fostering young citizens eager to confront diverse health and social challenges. At a moment when adults regularly profess dismay about our capacity for effective action, Voice, Choice, and Action offers inspiration and tools for participatory democracy.


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Voice, Choice, and Action
The Potential of Young Citizens to Heal Democracy
Felton Earls and Mary Carlson
Harvard University Press

“A book for these times as we confront the fault lines in our democracy…A deeply provocative work about the place of children in strengthening our sense of community.”
—Alex Kotlowitz, author of There Are No Children Here

“Earls and Carlson have discovered…an aspect of development previously unrecognized: how children and youth can find their voice, feel empowered to use that voice, and translate that voice into political action. This is a remarkable book.”
—Gordon Harper, Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

“An inspiring vision of a newly inclusive democracy.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Voice, Choice, and Action is the fruit of the extraordinary personal and professional partnership between a psychiatrist and neurobiologist whose research and social activism have informed each other for the last thirty years. Inspired by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, Felton Earls and Mary Carlson embarked on a series of studies to help children find their voice in the adult world. In Romania, they saw the devastating consequences of infant institutionalization. In Brazil, they found street children who had banded together to advocate for themselves. In Chicago, Earls sought to understand the origins of antisocial behavior in teenagers, and in Tanzania, they piloted a program to guide children’s growth as deliberative citizens.

Here in vivid detail are the science, ethics, and everyday practices needed to foster young citizens eager to confront social challenges. At a moment when adults regularly decry the state of our democracy, Voice, Choice, and Action offers invaluable tools to build a new generation of active citizens.


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Young Adults Deserve the Best
YALSA's Competencies in Action
Sarah Flowers
American Library Association, 2010

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