Winter of 1925 brings nothing but trouble and confusion for Belgian immigrant and American entrepreneur Jakob Schleicher. Seventy-four years old and in ill health, he reflects on his fifty years of living in America. Based on true events, Jakob’s Story and the American Dream weaves myriad moving parts of late nineteenth and early twentieth century U.S. history into this mans’ life story.
“Every man’s journey is his private literature,” author Aldous Huxley once wrote. Reflecting on everything from his youth spent in Antwerp, Belgium to his quest for the American Dream, Jakob Schleicher penned his private literature into a memoir. As you travel back to America’s Gilded Age and discover Schleicher and his times, you’ll gain insight into the challenges all of us who pursue the American Dream experience.
After all, achieving the American Dream doesn’t always result in receiving exactly what we want. Jakob Schleicher's story is just one example of this hard truth.
“Anyone who has been an immigrant, has known an immigrant, or who has descended from an immigrant will find a great deal to ponder in Jakob's Story and the American Dream. Erik Varon weaves a compelling story of how Jakob Schleicher, a Belgian-born youth of German ancestry, was transformed into James Schleicher, an American businessman who dreamed of a world in which art and culture would triumph over national division.” —Robert Wojtowicz, Ph.D., Dean of the Graduate School and Professor of Art History, Old Dominion University
Imagine how it would feel to one day wake up and find your vision descending swiftly into darkness. Your fingertips are turning numb, and, as the world closes in around you, you realise there is nothing you can do to stop it. This is what happened to Vanessa Potter.
In the space of 72 hours, Vanessa went from juggling a high-flying career as a producer and caring for her two small children to being completely blind, unable to walk, and with her sense of touch completely gone.
Over the course of the next six months, Vanessa slowly began to recover. Opening her eyes onto a black-and-white world with mutating shapes and colours that crackled and fizzled, she encountered a visual landscape that was completely unrecognisable. As colour reappeared, Vanessa experienced a range of bizarre phenomena as her confused brain tried to make sense of the world around her, and she found herself touching and talking to inanimate objects in order to stimulate her vision – all part of her brain's mechanism for coping with the trauma of sensory loss.
Going blind led Vanessa to turn science sleuth, reinventing herself as Patient H69 to uncover the reality behind her unique condition. With the help of a team of psychologists and neuroscientists, we follow her story as she learns the science of herself, making discoveries that will positively change the course of her life.
Vanessa's account is raw and candid, but ultimately upbeat. It shows how this remarkable woman opened doors by transforming her terrifying experience into an inspirational and scientifically fascinating endeavour.
At age forty, with two growing children and a new consulting company she’d recently founded, Gretchen Cherington, daughter of Pulitzer Prize–winning poet Richard Eberhart, faced a dilemma: Should she protect her parents’ well-crafted family myths while continuing to silence her own voice? Or was it time to challenge those myths and speak her truth—even the unbearable truth that her generous and kind father had sexually violated her?
In this powerful memoir, aided by her father’s extensive archives at Dartmouth College and interviews with some of her father’s best friends, Cherington candidly and courageously retraces her past to make sense of her father and herself. From the women’s movement of the ’60s and the back-to-the-land movement of the ’70s to Cherington’s consulting work through three decades with powerful executives to her eventual decision to speak publicly in the formative months of #MeToo, Poetic License is one woman’s story of speaking truth in a world where, too often, men still call the shots.
Witch' is a powerful word with humble origins. Once used to describe an ancient British tribe known for its unique class of female physicians and priestesses, it grew into something grotesque, diabolical and dangerous. A History of Women in Medicine: History of Women in Medicine reveals the untold story of forgotten female physicians, their lives, practices and subsequent denomination as witches. Originally held in high esteem in their communities, these women used herbs and ancient psychological processes to relieve the suffering of their patients. Often traveling long distances, moving from village to village, their medical and spiritual knowledge blended the boundaries between physician and priest. These ancient healers were the antithesis of the witch figure of today; instead they were knowledgeable therapists commanding respect, gratitude and high social status. In this pioneering work, Sinéad Spearing draws on current archeological evidence, literature, folklore, case studies and original religious documentation to bring to life these forgotten healers. By doing so she exposes the elaborate conspiracy conceived by the Church to corrupt them in the eyes of the world. Turning these women from benevolent therapists into the embodiment of evil required a fabricated theology to ensure those who collected medicinal herbs or practiced healing, would be viewed by society as dealing with the devil. From this diabolical association, female healers could then be labeled witches and be justly tortured and tried in the ensuing hysteria known today as the European witch craze.
Shortlisted for the PEN Ackerley Prize 2018.
This is a memoir of intense physical and personal experience, exploring how swimming with seals, gulls and orcas in the cold waters off Orkney provided Victoria Whitworth with an escape from a series of life crises and helped her to deal with intolerable loss.
It is also a treasure chest of history and myth, local folklore and archaeological clues, giving us tantalising glimpses of Pictish and Viking men and women, those people lost to history, whose long-hidden secrets are sometimes yielded up by the land and sea.
A true story ... The SHOCKING BESTSELLER!
"I always thought when consuming drugs they can fuck my body and do whatever they want with me. Because I hate my body, I'm fat and ugly and bulky – and I don't deserve better anyway. But during the moments when the drugs stop working I realize that those people do also fuck my soul. That hurts, well, no, there's more to it than that: it kills you without destroying your body, you're left behind, knowing you're fucked up, beyond cure, and that you gotta live with it …"
Having just come of age, the author tells about her childhood, having grown up in a children's home, started to consume drugs at the age of twelve, about street prostitution motivated by drug addiction, the tough life amidst johns, pimps and drug dealers and her attempt to escape – in one way or another.
Unrelently honest and very outspoken, she describes the other side of the world we live in, a life devoid of comfort, without a family, yet subsidized or at least tolerated by the state.
“How could a mother not know?” This is a question often asked about families where incest has occurred, and Eleanor Cowan’s gripping memoir, A History of a Pedophile’s Wife, steps up with answers that are courageous and heartbreaking. Cowan grew up in Quebec in the 1950s, in a large Roman Catholic family with a lethal mix of violence, addiction, and toxic pedagogy. Cowan details the dance of a survivor moving into adulthood: one step forward towards freedom, two steps back into conditioning, until a tipping point of consciousness is reached. As her memoir makes clear, that tipping point is not just a critical mass of abuse or even a touchstone of personal growth. It requires an enlarged and feminist context, permission to know the unknowable, and language to name the unspeakable.
Cowan’s book is a primer in compassion, especially for those of us who were abused as children and left to struggle with legacies of distrust and rage towards our mothers. It’s a vivid indictment of a mother-blaming culture that protects the very institutions that perpetuate child abuse.
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