Epic Encounters

Culture, Media, and U.S. Interests in the Middle East Since 1945
Author: Melani McAlister
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520244993
Category: History
Page: 407
View: 5352
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Examines how popular culture has shaped the ways Americans define their "interests" in the Middle East. Author McAlister argues that U.S. foreign policy, while grounded in material and military realities, is also developed in a cultural context. American understandings of the region are framed by narratives that draw on religious belief, news media accounts, and popular culture. This book skillfully weaves readings of film, media, and music with a rigorous analysis of U.S. foreign policy, race politics, and religious history.--From publisher description.

Epic Encounters

Culture, Media, and U.S. Interests in the Middle East since1945
Author: Melani McAlister
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520932013
Category: History
Page: 426
View: 9903
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Epic Encounters examines how popular culture has shaped the ways Americans define their "interests" in the Middle East. In this innovative book—now brought up-to-date to include 9/11 and the Iraq war—Melani McAlister argues that U.S. foreign policy, while grounded in material and military realities, is also developed in a cultural context. American understandings of the region are framed by narratives that draw on religious belief, news media accounts, and popular culture. This remarkable and pathbreaking book skillfully weaves lively and accessible readings of film, media, and music with a rigorous analysis of U.S. foreign policy, race politics, and religious history. The new chapter, titled "9/11 and After: Snapshots on the Road to Empire," considers and brilliantly analyzes five images that have become iconic: (1) New York City firemen raising the American flag out of the rubble of the World Trade Center, (2) the televised image of Osama bin-Laden, (3) Afghani women in burqas, (4) the statue of Saddam Hussein being toppled in Baghdad, and (5) the hooded and wired prisoner in Abu Ghraib. McAlister's singular achievement is to illuminate the contexts of these five images both at the time they were taken and as they relate to current events, an accomplishment all the more remarkable since—to paraphrase her new preface—we are today struggling to look backward at something that is still rushing ahead.

Epic Encounters

Culture, Media, and U.S. Interests in the Middle East, 1945-2000
Author: Melani McAlister
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520228108
Category: Political Science
Page: 358
View: 814
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"A wonderfully original and compelling study, essential for understanding the complex relations between the US and the nations and peoples of the Mideast. McAlister argues powerfully that American interests in the Mideast range far beyond the realm of foreign policy to become of paramount importance to the creation of American culture in the post World War II era. . . . A model for those interested in the interconnections of culture and foreign policy in an era of globalization. An engrossing read."--Amy Kaplan, author of "The Social Construction of American Realism" "Melani McAlister has written a marvelous book that draws together a vast array of materials from the media, archives, scholarly sources, and popular culture, interpreting it through her rich knowledge of cultural studies. Scholars in many fields--American studies, sociology, religious studies, political science, media studies, among others--will want to read this lively and engaging book."--Robert Wuthnow, author of "After Heaven: Spirituality in America Since the 1950s, " and "Creative Spirituality: The Way of the Artist" "A fascinating and completely original analysis of the relation between culture and foreign policy. . . this book casts entirely new light on US military, financial, and emotional investments in the Middle East. Conservative Christian sensibilities, television, Biblical epics, Black Power, and a host of gender-related representations--these and other factors all played a part in the shaping of American foreign policy in ways that have never before been noticed. No historian of twentieth-century American culture or politics should miss this brilliant book!"--Gail Bederman, author of "Manliness and Civilization: A Cultural History of Gender and Race in the US, 1880-1917" "Diplomatic historians are now turning to Edward Said's Orientalism to explore the cultural dimensions of 20th Century America's representations of the Middle East. They are too late! Melani McAlister develops a "post-orientalist" approach to U.S. culture, foreign policy, and identity. Hers is also the first book ever to recognize that African -Americans matter to such a project. "Epic Encounters" is a blockbuster of a book."--Robert Vitalis, author of "When Capitalists Collide: Business Conflict and the End of Empire in Egypt"

The Greatest-Ever Boxing Matches

100 Epic Encounters from the History of Boxing
Author: Peter Brooke-Ball,Derek O'Dell
Publisher: Southwater Pub
ISBN: 9781844767717
Category: Sports & Recreation
Page: 128
View: 2847
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This is the ultimate companion for any serious boxing fan. Thousands of facts, stories, anecdotes and statistics make it a superb reference source, while over 250 illustrations bring to life the passion of the greatest moments in the sport's history.

Gilgamesh among Us

Modern Encounters with the Ancient Epic
Author: Theodore Ziolkowski
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 0801463424
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 240
View: 7465
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The world's oldest work of literature, the Epic of Gilgamesh recounts the adventures of the semimythical Sumerian king of Uruk and his ultimately futile quest for immortality after the death of his friend and companion, Enkidu, a wildman sent by the gods. Gilgamesh was deified by the Sumerians around 2500 BCE, and his tale as we know it today was codified in cuneiform tablets around 1750 BCE and continued to influence ancient cultures-whether in specific incidents like a world-consuming flood or in its quest structure-into Roman times. The epic was, however, largely forgotten, until the cuneiform tablets were rediscovered in 1872 in the British Museum's collection of recently unearthed Mesopotamian artifacts. In the decades that followed its translation into modern languages, the Epic of Gilgamesh has become a point of reference throughout Western culture. In Gilgamesh among Us, Theodore Ziolkowski explores the surprising legacy of the poem and its hero, as well as the epic's continuing influence in modern letters and arts. This influence extends from Carl Gustav Jung and Rainer Maria Rilke's early embrace of the epic's significance-"Gilgamesh is tremendous!" Rilke wrote to his publisher's wife after reading it-to its appropriation since World War II in contexts as disparate as operas and paintings, the poetry of Charles Olson and Louis Zukofsky, novels by John Gardner and Philip Roth, and episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation and Xena: Warrior Princess. Ziolkowski sees fascination with Gilgamesh as a reflection of eternal spiritual values-love, friendship, courage, and the fear and acceptance of death. Noted writers, musicians, and artists from Sweden to Spain, from the United States to Australia, have adapted the story in ways that meet the social and artistic trends of the times. The spirit of this capacious hero has absorbed the losses felt in the immediate postwar period and been infused with the excitement and optimism of movements for gay rights, feminism, and environmental consciousness. Gilgamesh is at once a seismograph of shifts in Western history and culture and a testament to the verities and values of the ancient epic.

The Great Fights

80 Epic Encounters from the History of Boxing
Author: Peter Brooke-Ball,Derek O'Dell,Oswald Frederick Snelling
Publisher: Southwater Pub
ISBN: 9781842153833
Category: Sports & Recreation
Page: 128
View: 7463
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Highlights the contests that have created the core of boxing lore.

An Old Babylonian Version of the Gilgamesh Epic

On the Basis of Recently Discovered Texts
Author: Morris Jastrow,Albert Tobias Clay
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: N.A
Category: Assyro-Babylonian religion
Page: 106
View: 2275
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Clio and the Poets

Augustan Poetry and the Traditions of Ancient Historiography
Author: David S. Levene,Damien P. Nelis
Publisher: BRILL
ISBN: 9789004117822
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 396
View: 3543
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In this book seventeen leading scholars examine the interaction between historiography and poetry in the Augustan age: how poets drew on or reacted against historians presentation of the world, and how, conversely, historians transformed poetic themes for their own ends.

The Kingdom of God Has No Borders

A Global History of American Evangelicals
Author: Melani McAlister
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190213442
Category: Religion
Page: 368
View: 927
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More than forty years ago, conservative Christianity emerged as a major force in American political life. Since then the movement has been analyzed and over-analyzed, declared triumphant and, more than once, given up for dead. But because outside observers have maintained a near-relentless focus on domestic politics, the most transformative development over the last several decades--the explosive growth of Christianity in the global south--has gone unrecognized by the wider public, even as it has transformed evangelical life, both in the US and abroad. The Kingdom of God Has No Borders offers a daring new perspective on conservative Christianity by shifting the lens to focus on the world outside US borders. Melani McAlister offers a sweeping narrative of the last fifty years of evangelical history, weaving a fascinating tale that upends much of what we know--or think we know--about American evangelicals. She takes us to the Congo in the 1960s, where Christians were enmeshed in a complicated interplay of missionary zeal, Cold War politics, racial hierarchy, and anti-colonial struggle. She shows us how evangelical efforts to convert non-Christians have placed them in direct conflict with Islam at flash points across the globe. And she examines how Christian leaders have fought to stem the tide of HIV/AIDS in Africa while at the same time supporting harsh repression of LGBTQ communities. Through these and other stories, McAlister focuses on the many ways in which looking at evangelicals abroad complicates conventional ideas about evangelicalism. We can't truly understand how conservative Christians see themselves and their place in the world unless we look beyond our shores.

The Epic of Gilgamesh

Male and Female Encounters and Other Issues
Author: Tzvi Abusch
Publisher: Eisenbrauns
ISBN: 9781575063492
Category:
Page: N.A
View: 4232
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What Would Jesus Read?

Popular Religious Books and Everyday Life in Twentieth-Century America
Author: Erin A. Smith
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 1469621339
Category: Religion
Page: 410
View: 3913
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Since the late nineteenth century, religiously themed books in America have been commercially popular yet scorned by critics. Working at the intersection of literary history, lived religion, and consumer culture, Erin A. Smith considers the largely unexplored world of popular religious books, examining the apparent tension between economic and religious imperatives for authors, publishers, and readers. Smith argues that this literature served as a form of extra-ecclesiastical ministry and credits the popularity and longevity of religious books to their day-to-day usefulness rather than their theological correctness or aesthetic quality. Drawing on publishers' records, letters by readers to authors, promotional materials, and interviews with contemporary religious-reading groups, Smith offers a comprehensive study that finds surprising overlap across the religious spectrum--Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish, liberal and conservative. Smith tells the story of how authors, publishers, and readers reconciled these books' dual function as best-selling consumer goods and spiritually edifying literature. What Would Jesus Read? will be of interest to literary and cultural historians, students in the field of print culture, and scholars of religious studies.

Encounters on the Passage

Inuit Meet the Explorers
Author: Dorothy Harley Eber
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
ISBN: 1442691670
Category: History
Page: 240
View: 2765
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Inuit elders who grew up in camps on the shores of Frobisher Bay can tell you what happened when Martin Frobisher arrived with his vessel in 1576: "He fired two warning shots into the air. So right away there were some grievances." Frobisher's shots were the opening salvos in the search for the Northwest Passage, a search that lasted for more than four hundred years and riveted the Western world, particularly in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. In Encounters on the Passage, present day Inuit tell the stories that have been passed down from their ancestors of the first encounters with European explorers. In many of these stories the old cosmogony is still in place, with shamans playing starring roles opposite "the strangers intruding on the Inuit lands." Dorothy Harley Eber presents stories told to her about the expeditions of Sir Edward Parry, Sir John Ross, Sir John Franklin, and the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen, and sets them squarely in historical context. In the case of the disasterous Franklin expedition, new information opens up another fascinating chapter on the Franklin tragedy. Collected over twelve years on visits to communities in Nunavut, these remarkable stories of expeditionary forces and their dealings with native peoples will be new and exciting reading for those interested in the search for the Northwest Passage, the Franklin tragedy, and traditions of oral history.

The Close Encounters Man

How One Man Made the World Believe in UFOs
Author: Mark O'Connell
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0062484184
Category: Body, Mind & Spirit
Page: 416
View: 4419
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The wildly entertaining and eye-opening biography of J. Allen Hynek, the astronomer who invented the concept of "Close Encounters" with alien life, inspired Steven Spielberg’s blockbuster classic science fiction epic film, and made a nation want to believe in UFOs. In June 1947, private pilot Kenneth Arnold looked out his cockpit window and saw a group of nine silvery crescents weaving between the peaks of the Cascade Mountains at an estimated 1,200 miles an hour. The media, the military, and the scientific community—led by J. Allen Hynek, an astronomer hired by the Air Force—debunked this and many other Unidentified Flying Object sightings reported across the country. But after years of denials, Hynek made a shocking pronouncement: UFOs are real. Thirty years after his death, Hynek’s agonizing transformation from skepticism to true believer remains one of the great misunderstood stories of science. In this definitive biography, Mark O'Connell reveals for the first time how Hynek’s work both as a celebrated astronomer and as the U. S. Air Force’s go-to UFO expert for nearly twenty years stretched the boundaries of modern science, laid the groundwork for acceptance of the possibility of UFOs, and was the basis of the hit film Close Encounters of the Third Kind. With unprecedented access to Hynek’s personal and professional files, O’Connell smashes conventional wisdom to reveal the intriguing man and scientist beneath the legend. Tracing Hynek’s career, O'Connell examines Hynek’s often-ignored work as a professional astronomer to create a complete portrait of a groundbreaking enthusiast who became an American cult icon and transformed the way we see our world and our universe.

"Evil" Arabs in American Popular Film

Orientalist Fear
Author: Tim Jon Semmerling
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 029271341X
Category: Performing Arts
Page: 303
View: 9751
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The "evil" Arab has become a stock character in American popular films, playing the villain opposite American "good guys" who fight for "the American way." It's not surprising that this stereotype has entered American popular culture, given the real-world conflicts between the United States and Middle Eastern countries, particularly since the oil embargo of the 1970s and continuing through the Iranian hostage crisis, the first and second Gulf Wars, and the ongoing struggle against al-Qaeda. But when one compares the "evil" Arab of popular culture to real Arab people, the stereotype falls apart. In this thought-provoking book, Tim Jon Semmerling further dismantles the "evil" Arab stereotype by showing how American cultural fears, which stem from challenges to our national ideologies and myths, have driven us to create the "evil" Arab Other. Semmerling bases his argument on close readings of six films (The Exorcist, Rollover, Black Sunday, Three Kings, Rules of Engagement, and South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut), as well as CNN's 9/11 documentary America Remembers. Looking at their narrative structures and visual tropes, he analyzes how the films portray Arabs as threatening to subvert American "truths" and mythic tales—and how the insecurity this engenders causes Americans to project evil character and intentions on Arab peoples, landscapes, and cultures. Semmerling also demonstrates how the "evil" Arab narrative has even crept into the documentary coverage of 9/11. Overall, Semmerling's probing analysis of America's Orientalist fears exposes how the "evil" Arab of American popular film is actually an illusion that reveals more about Americans than Arabs.

The Cambridge Companion to American Islam


Author: Juliane Hammer,Omid Safi
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 110743386X
Category: Religion
Page: 350
View: 7951
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The Cambridge Companion to American Islam offers a scholarly overview of the state of research on American Muslims and American Islam. The book presents the reader with a comprehensive discussion of the debates, challenges and opportunities that American Muslims have faced through centuries of American history. This volume also covers the creative ways in which American Muslims have responded to the myriad serious challenges that they have faced and continue to face in constructing a religious praxis and complex identities that are grounded in both a universal tradition and the particularities of their local contexts. The book introduces the reader to some of the many facets of the lives of American Muslims that can only be understood in their interactions with Islam's entanglement in the American experiment.

The Truth Beyond the Sky


Author: Andrew M. Crusoe
Publisher: Andrew M. Crusoe
ISBN: N.A
Category: Fiction
Page: 320
View: 6967
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Religion and Politics in the Contemporary United States


Author: R. Marie Griffith,Melani McAlister
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
ISBN: N.A
Category: Social Science
Page: 552
View: 2172
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No other book on religion and politics includes anything like the diversity of religions, ethnicities, and topics that this one does—from Mormon political mobilization to attempts at Americanizing Muslims in the post-9/11 United States, from César Chávez to James Dobson, from interreligious cooperation and conflict over Darfur to the global politic

Strong Boy

The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America's First Sports Hero
Author: Christopher Klein
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 1493001981
Category: Sports & Recreation
Page: 368
View: 9966
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“I can lick any son-of-a-bitch in the world.” So boasted John L. Sullivan, the first modern heavyweight boxing champion of the world, a man who was the gold standard of American sport for more than a decade, and the first athlete to earn more than a million dollars. He had a big ego, big mouth, and bigger appetites. His womanizing, drunken escapades, and chronic police-blotter presence were godsends to a burgeoning newspaper industry. The larger-than-life boxer embodied the American Dream for late nineteenth-century immigrants as he rose from Boston’s Irish working class to become the most recognizable man in the nation. In the process, the “Boston Strong Boy” transformed boxing from outlawed bare-knuckle fighting into the gloved spectacle we know today. Strong Boy tells the story of America’s first sports superstar, a self-made man who personified the power and excesses of the Gilded Age. Everywhere John L. Sullivan went, his fists backed up his bravado. Sullivan’s epic brawls, such as his 75-round bout against Jake Kilrain, and his cross-country barnstorming tour in which he literally challenged all of America to a fight are recounted in vivid detail, as are his battles outside the ring with a troubled marriage, wild weight and fitness fluctuations, and raging alcoholism. Strong Boy gives readers ringside seats to the colorful tale of one of the country’s first Irish-American heroes and the birth of the American sports media and the country’s celebrity obsession with athletes.

Vietnam

An Epic Tragedy, 1945-1975
Author: Max Hastings
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0062405691
Category: History
Page: 896
View: 9006
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An absorbing and definitive modern history of the Vietnam War from the acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of The Secret War. Vietnam became the Western world’s most divisive modern conflict, precipitating a battlefield humiliation for France in 1954, then a vastly greater one for the United States in 1975. Max Hastings has spent the past three years interviewing scores of participants on both sides, as well as researching a multitude of American and Vietnamese documents and memoirs, to create an epic narrative of an epic struggle. He portrays the set pieces of Dienbienphu, the 1968 Tet offensive, the air blitz of North Vietnam, and also much less familiar miniatures such as the bloodbath at Daido, where a US Marine battalion was almost wiped out, together with extraordinary recollections of Ho Chi Minh’s warriors. Here are the vivid realities of strife amid jungle and paddies that killed two million people. Many writers treat the war as a US tragedy, yet Hastings sees it as overwhelmingly that of the Vietnamese people, of whom forty died for every American. US blunders and atrocities were matched by those committed by their enemies. While all the world has seen the image of a screaming, naked girl seared by napalm, it forgets countless eviscerations, beheadings, and murders carried out by the communists. The people of both former Vietnams paid a bitter price for the Northerners’ victory in privation and oppression. Here is testimony from Vietcong guerrillas, Southern paratroopers, Saigon bargirls, and Hanoi students alongside that of infantrymen from South Dakota, Marines from North Carolina, and Huey pilots from Arkansas. No past volume has blended a political and military narrative of the entire conflict with heart-stopping personal experiences, in the fashion that Max Hastings’ readers know so well. The author suggests that neither side deserved to win this struggle with so many lessons for the twenty-first century about the misuse of military might to confront intractable political and cultural challenges. He marshals testimony from warlords and peasants, statesmen and soldiers, to create an extraordinary record.