Students for a Democratic Society: A Graphic History, by Harvey Pekar, Gary Dumm, and Paul Buhle. As a member of the unnamed generation between the Baby Boomers and Gen. X, I’ve been told my whole life that I missed the best times: “Nothing has ever been as good as it was in 1968.” I thought I’d view that assertion through the lens of people who experienced 1968 politically. I have a new appreciation for the graphic novel; it’s perfect for this kind of story. I was surprised, though, that this isn’t really a linear history of SDS, but rather a series of stories about different personages, as told and illustrated by a number of authors.
The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion, by Jonathan Haidt. I missed this book when it was published to great acclaim in 2012. Actually, I confess that I am not reading this – yet. I watched a 2013 video of Haidt speaking about his work. I’m interested in this topic because so much of my own work stretches across some big ideological divides. Within the home birth community are many members with extraordinarily different values – and yet we manage to work together toward common goals. I’d like to extend that dynamic to other areas.
Into Our Own Hands: The Women’s Health Movement in the United States, 1969-1990, by Sandra Morgen. This is another important work I missed when it was published in 2002. I found it last month while looking at a history of the National Women’s Health Network on the organization’s website, although I can’t retrace the exact path now. I’m particularly looking forward to reading Chapter 6, “The Changer and the Changed: The Women’s Health Movement, Doctors, and Organized Medicine.”
Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain, by Daniel M. Siegel. This book was recommended to me for its insight into teenage behavior. I’ve been a teenager, of course, but somehow the experience doesn’t always translate to parenting one. I suspect this is a book I’ll skim rather than read through, but I am immediately attracted to the subheading “Ambivalence, Emotional Confusion, and the Right Side of the Brain.” That sounds about right.
Bet Me, by Jennifer Crusie. As the cover might suggest, this is a lightweight, lighthearted book. The library catalog lists it under the subject heading Dating (Social customs) — Fiction. I’m listening to the audiobook in the car with great delight. If you see me driving around town alternately laughing and blushing, you’ll know what I’m listening to. Crusie’s characters excel at delivering the bon mot – much like on West Wing, if you can imagine them substituting romance for politics: ““Statistics show that men are interested in three things: careers, sports, and sex. That’s why they love professional cheerleaders.” (See the remainder of the quote here.)
Happy reading to all. Remember, support your public libraries. Borrow often to boost their circulation figures! Michigan residents with participating libraries should remember the Michigan ELibrary is able to quickly place interlibrary loans and put some great collections within our reach.