Scottish author James Kelman talks about his early life and loves, and the controversy around his 1994 Booker Prize win.
One of the nicest things that happens, to me anyway, is when somebody recommends a book about something you are interested in. I have learned a lot from these books. They are not light reading. The Jungle is one of the most incredible journeys exploring all angles of the human condition I have ever read. Anyway you may find something… I will update from time to time
The Art of Work
“The history of art is really a very short one. The history of skilled work is altogether different. Daedalus was, as we have seen, artist-craftsman, engineer-inventor, designer-maker, before such skills were separated out from each other, and in Daedalus we can see the workshop tradition which was the original repository and guardian of knowledge in a time when knowledge and understanding were orally transmitted, essentially practical, and locked in an intimate relationship with the physical world” Roger Coleman .
Mathematics For the Million
“Mathematics for the Million the most illuminating, useful and exciting book ever published in the mathematical field.
For all those who experience an instinctive fear of mathematical formulae, this book will demystify the difficulties and enable the reader to come to terms with what the author describes as “the language of measurement”. Taking only the most elementary knowledge for granted, Hogben leads his reader through the whole course from simple arithmetic to calculus.”(Back cover) Lancelot Hogben
Victor Papanek, ‘the green imperative’
Toxic Sludge is Good for You
How do you sell a war? How do you turn industrial waste
into fertiliser? How do you make sure the public don’t get
in the way of the smooth functioning of democracy? Toxic
Sludge Is Good for You explains exactly how the magic of
modern PR transforms the favoured policies of the rich
and the powerful into uncontroversial common sense.
John Stauber & Sheldon Rampton
A Peoples History of the United States
The future of Technics and Civilisation
Lewis Mumford, First published in 1934
The Intellectual life of the British Working Classes
By Jonathan Rose
All of education was once a social occupation. Self educated people are difficult to control. Education needed to become competitive in order to be judged and by the merit and usefulness to our masters and betters – hence the need for institutionalised education. Well researched books are few and far between. This book is full of ordinary peoples experiences of the joy of discovering the world through books, writing and mutual education.
… Chomsky’s great contribution is his mastery of a huge wealth of factual information, and his uncanny skill at unmasking, in case after case, the workings and deceptions of powerful institutions in today’s world. His method involves teaching through examples—not in the abstract—as a means of helping people to learn how to think critically for themselves. Editors Preface
Taking the risk out of democracy
Alex Carey (Propaganda)
“Indeed it remains, as ever, an axiom of conventional wisdom that the use of propaganda as a means of social and ideological control is distinctive of totalitarian regimes. Yet the most minimal exercise of common sense would suggest a different view: that propaganda is likely to play at least as important a part in democratic societies (where the existing distribution of power and privilege is vulnerable to quite limited changes in popular opinion) ‘ as in authoritarian societies (where it is not). It is arguable that the success of business propaganda in persuading us, for so long, that we are free from propaganda is one of the most significant propaganda— achievements of the twentieth century.” p21
“This savage novel of the bestial conditions among the stockyards and slaughterhouses of Chicago in the early years of the present century is perhaps the most influential and harrowing of all Upton Sinclair’s writings. So great was the furore caused by the publication of this novel that the food laws of the United States were changed within six months.” Back cover.
By Upton Sinclair
1920-1929 A story of state murder of two anarchists. The evidence of their innocence was mountain high. There conviction was protested around the world – After seven years in jail, they were still executed on the evidence of State lies. Just part of the earlier history of state terror that has become so prevalent in a much grander scale, around our world today – and still unaccountable, to the laws that should protect, but are rather used to enforce the tyranny.