OK Amateur Historians, What are You Reading For the 2nd Half of '08 (July =>December)

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OK Amateur Historians, What are You Reading For the 2nd Half of '08 (July =>December)

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1ThePam
Edited: Jul 3, 2008, 5:18pm

Currently I'm reading "Canoeing with the Cree" by Eric Sevareid.

At 17, Sevareid paddled off with his best friend to go north from Minnesota to the Hudson Bay -- a trip of 2200 miles. It was a different time and age (1930s).

2marieke54
Jul 4, 2008, 2:37am

For me weekend has already begun and I hope to make a big sweep with the book I am recently reading from 5.00-600 a.m. and in the tram to my work, an early reader as I am to tired in the evenings to read serious stuff: A peace to end all peace: the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the creation of the modern Middle East by David Fromkin. For me lots of pieces from other books come together in this compelling book.
Fromkin is giving two stories. The first one about the partition of the Middle-East by the big powers, especially Great Britain, after WW I. The second one is about how British officials and politicians changed their minds between 1914 and 1922, so that when remaking the M.-E. really started, they no longer believed in it. An old order destroyed, a new one imposed with lack of conviction…

3ThePam
Edited: Jul 26, 2008, 7:21pm

"Meat's Meat": An Account of the Flesh-Eating Habits of Western Americans

Author(s): Martin Schmitt

This is a short (fun) article that begins with Antelope and ends with Wolverine, covering a variety of creatures (sandhill crane anyone?) that early western travelers ate... including 'man meat'.

It will shortly be a blog item.

4DaynaRT
Jul 25, 2008, 8:40am

The Christian World: A Global History by Martin Marty - the title says it all, although this is a short overview (around 260 pages), not a in-depth analysis.

5HarmlessTed
Jul 31, 2008, 4:44am

I am 80 pages into A Critical History Of Early Rome by Gary Forsythe, an empirical and analytical approach to a complex and very interesting subject - fascinating!

6ThePam
Jul 31, 2008, 7:04am

This message has been deleted by its author.

7TLCrawford
Edited: Jul 31, 2008, 8:31am

Last week I got a reading list for a fall history class. I just finished the first and am starting the second. These should keep me busy for a few weeks.

Eats, Shoots, and Leaves by Lynne Truss
The Return of Martin Guerre by Natalie Davis
A Midwife's Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard by Laurel T. Ulrich
Dead Certainties: Unwarranted Speculations by Simon Schama
Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland by Christopher R. Browning
Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust by Daniel J. Goldhagen
A Pocket Guide to Writing in History by Mary Lynn Rampolla

At first I questioned the inclusion of the Truss book. She does get a little into the history of punctuation but the class is about how to interpret your research and even the title of the book shows how punctuation can change the meaning of a sentence. Look at the title of ThePam’s article. “Meat’s Meat” it could be ‘meat is meat’ or ‘meat that belong to or is for meat.’ Since the article covers cannibalism both work.

Is anybody familiar with the Schama book? Even after looking at reviews I am not sure what it is about.

8HarmlessTed
Aug 7, 2008, 7:55am

I am now devouring Troublesome Young Men by Lynne Olson, a LT recommendation.

9ThePam
Sep 21, 2008, 12:28pm

Just finished re-reading Mountain Scouting: A Handbook for Officers and Soldiers on the Frontier for the second time and posted a review on me blog. http://www.pageinhistory.com/

This is an awesomely entertaining book, imo. Published in 1881, it gives all kinds of how-to information on Army field life. Available free on-line in pdf format for anyone that's interested.

10CSL
Sep 23, 2008, 3:37am

>7 TLCrawford:

I was in a historiography class with someone who wrote a paper on Goldhagen's book and she absolutely hated it, something about it being filled with a lot of specious lies or rather streched truths that were rather easily destroyed by professional historians.

11TLCrawford
Sep 23, 2008, 9:00am

I am an undergraduate student but I am 50+ years old So I think I have a different perspective than most of the 20 year olds in the class. I read several books on the Holocaust back in the 1970’s, Treblinka, The War Against the Jews, and They Fought Back so not much of this surprises me. I also have a German uncle who was 13 or 14 when the war ended. He never talks about that part of his life but I think of him as being one of the ordinary Germans both authors speak of.

12robbieg_422
Nov 5, 2008, 3:10pm

I am reading A Pirate of Exquisite Mind, and learning quite a great deal about William Dampier. I've yet to decide whether he was more explorer, pirate, naturalist, navigator, or all of the above. It's very good, so far.

TL Crawford, I love meeting people who are 'back to school', as I'd like to do that, myself, were it not for the fear of debt I'd find myself in. Are you in traditional classes, or did you find a good online school? (I don't know alot about online programs, and am always interested in hearing others' opinions)

13TLCrawford
Nov 5, 2008, 3:46pm

I am a student at Miami University in Oxford, Hamilton and Middletown Ohio. I could no resist saying it that way because next semester I have a class on each campus. I could never afford it with the job I have but my wife works in the university’s Office of Life Long Learning and one of the benefits is that our tuition is forgiven. Most of my classes have been in the evening or on Saturdays so there is a good mix of ages in the class. I have one class this semester on the Oxford campus with a room full of 19 and 20 year olds but it is not to bad. My Spanish professor is young enough to be my daughter, that was a little hard to adjust to.

Right now I am reading A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard , the last one for the class I listed up in message 7.

14Dragonfly
Nov 7, 2008, 8:34pm

America at 1750: A Social Portrait by Richard Hofstadter which I found on the library shelves while looking for something else. It's very well written.

15ThePam
Edited: Nov 10, 2008, 7:36am

I'm reading "Now the Drum of War". It's about Walt Whitman's family.

I never had a particular interest in Walt, per se, but this book is changing that. It's very well written and gives a fascinating picture of our country in the 1830's, 40's, and now 50's. Mostly in Brooklyn, which was then a little hamlet; and DC.

(I think it's hysterical that people in the 1840s were totally into flipping houses. At least before the crash)

16alcottacre
Nov 10, 2008, 7:38am

#15 The Pam: I just finished reading This Republic of Suffering which had a chapter in it discussing Whitman's work after the Civil War in trying to make sure that the Union dead were all identified and given proper burial, something that I did not realize about Whitman. I will have to check out your current read as well.

17ThePam
Nov 12, 2008, 11:57am

I, in turn, will check out Republic of Suffering.

18Shrike58
Nov 12, 2008, 12:38pm

Just finished The Ottoman Empire.

19TLCrawford
Nov 12, 2008, 1:20pm

The Bonus Army It is about the WWI veterans march on Washington during the Great Depression. It is one more attempt by me to figure out what MacArthur was thinking when he, personally, lead the troops that forced them out of the capital. He was Chief-of-Staff, he could have passed the order on to a subordinate. He had to know that putting himself in the front was going to, at the best, hurt his advancement into politics.

20alcottacre
Nov 16, 2008, 8:21am

I am currently engrossed in Safe Return Doubtful by John Maxtone-Graham, a history of polar exploration. So far, it has been very good.

21Dragonfly
Nov 18, 2008, 9:44pm

Just finished A Voyage Long and Strange by Tony Horwitz, a combination of history and travel book. A lot of this was familiar to me, but I still got a kick out of the book, learned some new things about areas other than mine, and had a few chuckles. A good present for someone interested in history, but not into the professional literature.

22alcottacre
Nov 24, 2008, 11:06pm

#21 Dragonfly: I really enjoy Tony Horwitz's books, but I had not read the one you mentioned. His Confederates in the Attic is one of my favorites. I will have to check this new one out as well.

23alcottacre
Nov 29, 2008, 8:53am

Currently reading In the Devil's Snare by Mary Beth Norton about the Salem Witch Trials. Very interesting material.

24alcottacre
Dec 1, 2008, 3:40am

I have picked up Four Hours in My Lai by Michael Bilton and Kevin Sim to read. I am hoping to improve my knowledge of the Vietnam War over the course of the next year or so - any recommendations would be appreciated!

25marieke54
Dec 1, 2008, 6:26am

FDR by Jean Edward Smith, which I choose because of the election of Obama. Sofar (I am at the American participation in ww 1 when FDR still has the use of his legs) it is a very interesting read. His nephew TR wants him to fight in Europe. TR wanted to fight himself but was forbidden: no volunteers allowed!

26TLCrawford
Dec 11, 2008, 2:39pm

Every Man a King so far I have been surprised at how readable it is and by the fact that he provided footnotes to document his story.

27sergerca
Dec 11, 2008, 6:13pm

Working on A Short History of Byzantium. Very interesting but A LOT to retain.