Current Reading: February 2023

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Current Reading: February 2023

Muokkaaja: helmikuu 1, 10:44 pm

It's the shortest month!

Finished from the library: Queens of the Age of Chivalry by Alison Weir
New and #3 installment in her "England's Medieval Queens" series. It was released here in the US in December.
She's previously written about the Queens in this book, either individual biographies or a particular time period.

helmikuu 3, 8:13 am

Wrapped up Digging up Armageddon, an extended study of the personalities involved in the University of Chicago's expeditions to the famous archaeological site of Megiddo.

Muokkaaja: helmikuu 9, 2:30 pm

Completed The Battle of Glorieta: Union Victory in the West by Don E. Alberts. Very good book, well written without stylizing or atmosphere but in a good narrative style. The book briefly covers the Confederate invasion of New Mexico in 1862 and the Battle of Valverde, then the majority of the book is about the Battle of Glorieta. There is some also coverage of the post battle campaign. The author participated in archeological studies of the battlefield and in the end notes are some interesting observations about artifacts and topography.

helmikuu 10, 7:34 am

Finished Invisible China, an examination over how Beijing's mismanagement of its rural population, particularly in terms of education and public health, is likely to throttle any continuing hopes of economic advancement. Even though it only came out in 2020, this book already seems like it's being left behind by events. Of course, the question begged is whether Xi Jinping cares about having a more dynamic labor force (and by extension military force), or whether he just wants a population who will shut up and follow.

helmikuu 10, 2:41 pm

I expect Xi wants as dynamic a labour force as is compatible with totalitarian control by himself.

helmikuu 11, 7:47 am

>5 AndreasJ: Pretty much. The question now is what is really behind that incident with the balloon. Was that an exercise in trying to embarrass Xi? Xi actually does appear to realize that China's position is suddenly rather precarious, and care is thus in order, whereas others may feel that the moment will never be better to go for the big prize.

helmikuu 14, 7:40 am

Knocked off Perpetrators, which besides trying to get in the heads of the men who actually got their hands bloody in the Holocaust, also works as a survey of the literature.

helmikuu 16, 5:58 pm

Finished an interesting Naval Aviation in the First World War: Its Impact and Influence by R. D. Layman. While a more serious look, the book is still very readable and interesting.

helmikuu 19, 4:44 pm

Completed Warfare and Weaponry in Dynastic Egypt by Rebecca Angharad Dean. It is an attempt to use the evident available in hieroglyphics and other sources, plus work done by previous authorities, to examine what we know about warfare and weaponry during that period. And there is a very interesting chapter on experimental archeology. There is a lot of supposition which is quite reasonable since evidence at times is scanty or is subject to interpretation. Still I learned a lot from the book.

However, I would feel remiss if I didn't mention that the book could have been better had the author not been pursuing a feminist agenda which she freely acknowledges. In her chapter on experimental archeology, where replica weapons, armor and shield are tested, she repeated emphasized how a female could have used those items and in fact it was one of the goals of the experiments, to demonstrate this. I think this is somewhat ironic, since first of all she acknowledges that there is no evidence whatsoever that females were ever part of the Egyptian army at any time. Also, what's the point of making the distinction? Anyway, that's my take on it.

helmikuu 22, 10:29 pm

Finished a short and not all that interesting Becoming Charlemagne: Europe, Baghdad, and the Empires of A.D. 800 by Jeff Sypeck. It was written very stylistically which might be more of an attraction for some readers, but overall there wasn't that much content.

helmikuu 23, 7:53 am

Knocked off The Courtesan and the Gigolo, which uses a high-profile French murder case of 1887 as a lens through which to examine various aspects of society in the early Third Republic. Not bad at all, but meant more for the scholar than the true-crime enthusiast.

Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 1, 5:57 pm

Finished from the library: Independent Press in D.C. and Virginia by Dale M. Brumfield
Local history book about the heyday of the alternative press in DC and VA in the '60s and '70s.

helmikuu 24, 7:55 am

>12 princessgarnet: Is a lot of the focus on the "City Paper?"

helmikuu 26, 8:19 am

Finished Moscow Monumental, a really excellent examination of the phenomenon of the Stalinist skyscraper, which is as much social history as it is about architecture. I had to give it five stars.

helmikuu 28, 8:41 pm

I finally finished going through Maine A Guide 'Down East' last week. It's part of the American Guide Series that fell under the WPA Federal Writers Project.

The writing is better in the history chapter than some of the other volumes I have read. There are three chapters that had interesting manufacturing, farming and transportation data. Hopefully I'll get a bit faster on this.

Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 1, 5:57 pm

>13 Shrike58:, That one wasn't included for DC papers. You can see the titles covered in the preview feature on the Arcadia Publishing website.

maaliskuu 2, 7:28 am