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Uncharted: Big Data as a Lens on Human Culture
Everyone has heard of Big Data; huge amounts of information, usually involving computers or the Internet. Is there a cultural or historical equivalent of Big Data?      Yes, and it …
reviewed Unions for Beginners. November 17, 2013
The forty-hour work week, pensions and safe working conditions became part of the American employment landscape because employers felt that it was the proper thing to do, right? No, those things came …
reviewed 'Hyde Park On The Hudson'. June 08, 2013
posted in Movie Hype
'Hyde Park On The Hudson'
It's 1939, and while FDR is preparing to host the King and Queen of England at his New York home, he makes time for a new mistress.      Bill Murray does a good job underplaying …
reviewed Those Angry Days: Roosevelt, Lindberg.... April 01, 2013
Those Angry Days: Roosevelt, Lindbergh, and America's Fight Over World War II, 1939-1941
When Adolf Hitler made the fateful decision to invade Poland on September 1, 1939 most Americans were bound and determined to stay out of another conflict on the European continent. Just two decades earlier …
reviewed Detroit: An American Autopsy. February 04, 2013
Detroit: An American Autopsy
"Studying the city through the windshield now, it wasn't frightening anymore. It was empty and forlorn and pathetic. On some block not a single home was occupied, the structures having fallen …
reviewed The Dust Bowl. December 08, 2012
The Dust Bowl
It is one of the most gut-wrenching films I have ever seen. Like an episode of the old TV series "Time Tunnel" noted filmmaker Ken Burns transports his audience back to the Great Plains in the 1930's. …
reviewed 'Hyde Park On The Hudson'. December 05, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
'Hyde Park On The Hudson'
   'Hyde Park On The Hudson' is the story of a love affaire between FDR (Bill Murray) and his distant cousin, Margaret Stuckley (Laura Linney) centered around the weekend in 1939 when …
reviewed J. Edgar (2011 film). September 28, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
J. Edgar
Throughout an illustrious directing career Clint Eastwood has delivered outstanding movies such as Unforgiven, Mystic River, and Million Dollar Baby, for which he has won five Academy Awards, for best …
reviewed Midnight in the Garden of Good and Ev.... September 27, 2012
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
The movie adaption of Berendt's "nonfiction novel", as one back-cover reviewer terms it, is much better known than the original book.  And while I've not yet seen the movie, I can …
reviewed The Secret Life of Codebreakers by Si.... September 17, 2012
The Secret Life of Codebreakers by Sinclair McKay
Imagine being a member of a team whose work was said to have shortened World War II by at least two years–––and not being to tell anybody about it for decades. Your friends, neighbors …
reviewed J. Edgar (2011 film). September 16, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
J. Edgar
This speculative biopic of the controversial FBI director stars Leonardo DiCaprio. The story opens in 1970, as Hoover is dictating his history of the Bureau; in flashbacks, we see his pivotal role the …
reviewed Inferno by Max Hastings. September 15, 2012
Inferno by Max Hastings
Max Hastings's impressive achievement here is that he has written such a readable one-volume study of the war. The book's readability is largely due to Hastings's inclusion of so many views …
reviewed To Kill the duke. July 26, 2012
To Kill the duke
Memories of the Cold War and many Hollywood celebrities dot the pages of this cleverly told tale.      There is additional enjoyment in reading this story where the cast of characters …
Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage: The Titanic's First Class Passengers and Their World
Type in the word "Titanic" on the Amazon website and you will discover dozens and dozens of books that have been written about the ill-fated vessel. Over the past century there have been literally hundreds …
Exodus Lost: An Inquiry Into the Genesis of Civilization
This book looks at history and archaeology in a very different way. It also attempts to put dates to several Biblical events.      In the early 1500s, the Aztec leader Montezuma told …
reviewed J. Edgar (2011 film). June 19, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
J. Edgar
DiCaprio seems to amaze me with his string of exceptional performances (Blood Diamond, Catch Me If You Can, The Aviator, Inception, Shutter Island) and he once again delivers as the founder of the FBI …
reviewed Wagons to Hangtown. April 25, 2012
Wagons to Hangtown
Set in the 1850s, this novel is about a trio of young men who travel across America, seduced by that word: gold.      Edward Daingerfield, his cousin, Richard, and their friend, Lewis, …
How To Survive The Titanic or The Sinking of J. Bruce Ismay
On the 100th anniversary of the Titanic (the ship's name a shorthand for both the event and its importance) is a poignant story that unlike so many about the ship is fresh and powerful in its impact.  …
Thinking Small: The Long Strange Trip of the Volkswagen Beetle
When Volkswagen's legendary "Think Small" advertising campaign was launched back in 1959 I was just eight years old. Obviously, I had no idea at the time that the Volkswagen or "people's car" was designed …
posted a Quick Tip about History (TV Channel). February 28, 2012
History
I really love watching History Channel around the holidays. They always have some great programs about each holiday's origin. I especially enjoy their Halloween special.
reviewed musa dagh. February 09, 2012
musa dagh
This is the true story about a famous bit of early 20th century history, the Armenian Genocide. It is also about the suppression, with the help of the American government, of a movie based on a novel …
reviewed Pan American World Airways: Images of.... December 24, 2011
For some reason, going back in time in aviation history fascinates me. It used to be that air travel was an adventure, one where you were expected to dress and behave with class.  Planes came with …
reviewed President Lincoln's Letter to Joshua .... December 20, 2011
Analysis of President Lincoln's Letter to Joshua Speed
President Lincoln's August 24, 1855 letter to Joshua Speed is memorable for the intensive   discussion of slavery, as well as views pro and con. Joshua Speed is considered to be   …
reviewed J. Edgar (2011 film). November 30, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
J. Edgar
Eastwood's filmic account of Hoover the Voracious, the Fastidious, the Venal - self-aggrandizing, mother's son, political paranoiac, closet queer, social inept, vindictive bureaucrat - exudes …
reviewed J. Edgar (2011 film). November 23, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
J. Edgar
Possible Spoilers Alert. I really enjoyed this film. I found it quite fascinating that the FBI had such a hard battle to get initiated into American government and that each new President wanted to fire …
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