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Math & Science

BECKONING SILENCE

BECKONING SILENCE

By: Simpson, Joe
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The author of Touching the Void reflects on his storied mountaineering career, relating what he's learned from the challenges, tragedies, and absurdities of the sport.
BECOMING ANIMAL

BECOMING ANIMAL

By: Abram, David
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David Abram's first book, The Spell of the Sensuous has become a classic of environmental literature. Now he returns with a startling exploration of our human entanglement with the rest of nature.

As the climate veers toward catastrophe, the innumerable losses cascading through the biosphere make vividly evident the need for a metamorphosis in our relation to the living land. For too long we've ignored the wild intelligence of our bodies, taking our primary truths from technologies that hold the living world at a distance. Abram's writing subverts this distance, drawing readers ever closer to their animal senses in order to explore, from within, the elemental kinship between the human body and the breathing Earth. The shape-shifting of ravens, the erotic nature of gravity, the eloquence of thunder, the pleasures of being edible: all have their place in this book.

BEDEVILED

BEDEVILED

By: Canales, Jimena
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How scientists through the ages have conducted thought experiments using imaginary entities--demons--to test the laws of nature and push the frontiers of what is possible

Science may be known for banishing the demons of superstition from the modern world. Yet just as the demon-haunted world was being exorcized by the enlightening power of reason, a new kind of demon mischievously materialized in the scientific imagination itself. Scientists began to employ hypothetical beings to perform certain roles in thought experiments--experiments that can only be done in the imagination--and these impish assistants helped scientists achieve major breakthroughs that pushed forward the frontiers of science and technology.

Spanning four centuries of discovery--from René Descartes, whose demon could hijack sensorial reality, to James Clerk Maxwell, whose molecular-sized demon deftly broke the second law of thermodynamics, to Darwin, Einstein, Feynman, and beyond--Jimena Canales tells a shadow history of science and the demons that bedevil it. She reveals how the greatest scientific thinkers used demons to explore problems, test the limits of what is possible, and better understand nature. Their imaginary familiars helped unlock the secrets of entropy, heredity, relativity, quantum mechanics, and other scientific wonders--and continue to inspire breakthroughs in the realms of computer science, artificial intelligence, and economics today.

The world may no longer be haunted as it once was, but the demons of the scientific imagination are alive and well, continuing to play a vital role in scientists' efforts to explore the unknown and make the impossible real.

BEING THERE

BEING THERE

By: Clark, Andy
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Brain, body, and world are united in a complex dance of circular causation and extended computational activity. In Being There, Andy Clark weaves these several threads into a pleasing whole and goes on to address foundational questions concerning the new tools and techniques needed to make sense of the emerging sciences of the embodied mind. Clark brings together ideas and techniques from robotics, neuroscience, infant psychology, and artificial intelligence. He addresses a broad range of adaptive behaviors, from cockroach locomotion to the role of linguistic artifacts in higher-level thought.
BELIEF IN GOD IN AN AGE OF SCIENCE

BELIEF IN GOD IN AN AGE OF SCIENCE

By: Polkinghorne, John C
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John Polkinghorne brings unique qualifications to his exploration of the possibilities of believing in God in an age of science: he is internationally known as a theoretical physicist and as a theologian. In this thought-provoking book, Polkinghorne focuses on the collegiality between science and theology, contending that the inquiries of these "intellectual cousins" are parallel.
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BELIEF INSTINCT: The Psychology of Souls, Destiny, and the Meaning of Life

By: Bering, Jesse
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Lively and brilliantly argued, The Belief Instinct explains the psychology behind belief. Drawing on surprising new studies as well as on literature, philosophy, and even pop culture, The Belief Instinct will reward readers with an enlightened understanding of belief as well as the tools to break free of it."
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S SCIENCE:

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S SCIENCE:

By: Cohen, I Bernard
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Benjamin Franklin is well known to most of us, yet his fundamental and wide-ranging contributions to science are still not adequately understood. Until now he has usually been incorrectly regarded as a practical inventor and tinkerer rather than a scientific thinker. He was elected to membership in the elite Royal Society because his experiments and original theory of electricity had made a science of that new subject. His popular fame came from his two lightning experiments--the sentry-box experiment and the later and more famous experiment of the kite--which confirmed his theoretical speculations about the identity of electricity and provided a basis for the practical invention of the lightning rod. Franklin advanced the eighteenth-century understanding of all phenomena of electricity and provided a model for experimental science in general.

I. Bernard Cohen, an eminent historian of science and the principal elucidator of Franklin's scientific work, examines his activities in fields ranging from heat to astronomy. He provides masterful accounts of the theoretical background of Franklin's science (especially his study of Newton), the experiments he performed, and their influence throughout Europe as well as the United States. Cohen emphasizes that Franklin's political and diplomatic career cannot be understood apart from his scientific activities, which established his reputation and brought him into contact with leaders of British and European society. A supplement by Samuel J. Edgerton considers Franklin's attempts to improve the design of heating stoves, another practical application that arose from theoretical interests.

This volume will be valuable to all readers wanting to learn more about Franklin and to gain a deeper appreciation of the development of science in America.

BEST ADVENTURE & SURVIVAL 2003

BEST ADVENTURE & SURVIVAL 2003

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The fourth edition of publishing's only adventure annual offers another exhilarating collection of the year's most gripping and entertaining adventure stories -- from the world's coldest waters to its scariest wildfire. Drawn from the year's most memorable adventure book titles, magazine pieces, and websites, these stories focus on men and women pushing beyond their limits -- from the woman who swam to Antarctica to the seven snowboarders who tried to ride out an avalanche in British Columbia's untracked Selkirk Mountains, to the biologist trying to survive his search for a new species of bear. Including new work by David Roberts, Sy Montgomery, Peter Leschak, and Tim Cahill, these selections prove once again that today's best adventure literature ranks among the best writing anywhere.
BEST OF ALL POSSIBLE WORLDS: Mathematics and Destiny

BEST OF ALL POSSIBLE WORLDS: Mathematics and Destiny

By: Ekeland, Ivar
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Optimists believe this is the best of all possible worlds. And pessimists fear that might really be the case. But what is the best of all possible worlds? How do we define it? Is it the world that operates the most efficiently? Or the one in which most people are comfortable and content? Questions such as these have preoccupied philosophers and theologians for ages, but there was a time, during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, when scientists and mathematicians felt they could provide the answer.

This book is their story. Ivar Ekeland here takes the reader on a journey through scientific attempts to envision the best of all possible worlds. He begins with the French physicist Maupertuis, whose least action principle asserted that everything in nature occurs in the way that requires the least possible action. This idea, Ekeland shows, was a pivotal breakthrough in mathematics, because it was the first expression of the concept of optimization, or the creation of systems that are the most efficient or functional. Although the least action principle was later elaborated on and overshadowed by the theories of Leonhard Euler and Gottfried Leibniz, the concept of optimization that emerged from it is an important one that touches virtually every scientific discipline today.

Tracing the profound impact of optimization and the unexpected ways in which it has influenced the study of mathematics, biology, economics, and even politics, Ekeland reveals throughout how the idea of optimization has driven some of our greatest intellectual breakthroughs. The result is a dazzling display of erudition--one that will be essential reading for popular-science buffs and historians of science alike.

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2013

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2013

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The year's finest writing on mathematics from around the world, with a foreword by Nobel Prize-winning physicist Roger Penrose

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2013 makes available to a wide audience many articles not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These writings offer surprising insights into the nature, meaning, and practice of mathematics today. They delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday occurrences of math, and take readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates. Here Philip Davis offers a panoramic view of mathematics in contemporary society; Terence Tao discusses aspects of universal mathematical laws in complex systems; Ian Stewart explains how in mathematics everything arises out of nothing; Erin Maloney and Sian Beilock consider the mathematical anxiety experienced by many students and suggest effective remedies; Elie Ayache argues that exchange prices reached in open market transactions transcend the common notion of probability; and much, much more.

In addition to presenting the year's most memorable writings on mathematics, this must-have anthology includes a foreword by esteemed mathematical physicist Roger Penrose and an introduction by the editor, Mircea Pitici. This book belongs on the shelf of anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2014

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2014

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The year's finest writing on mathematics from around the world

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2014 makes available to a wide audience many articles not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These writings offer surprising insights into the nature, meaning, and practice of mathematics today. They delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday occurrences of math, and take readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates. Here John Conway presents examples of arithmetical statements that are almost certainly true but likely unprovable; Carlo Séquin explores, compares, and illustrates distinct types of one-sided surfaces known as Klein bottles; Keith Devlin asks what makes a video game good for learning mathematics and shows why many games fall short of that goal; Jordan Ellenberg reports on a recent breakthrough in the study of prime numbers; Stephen Pollard argues that mathematical practice, thinking, and experience transcend the utilitarian value of mathematics; and much, much more.

In addition to presenting the year's most memorable writings on mathematics, this must-have anthology includes an introduction by editor Mircea Pitici. This book belongs on the shelf of anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.

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BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2015

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The year's finest writing on mathematics from around the world

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2015 makes available to a wide audience many articles not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These writings offer surprising insights into the nature, meaning, and practice of mathematics today. They delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday occurrences of math, and take readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates.

Here David Hand explains why we should actually expect unlikely coincidences to happen; Arthur Benjamin and Ethan Brown unveil techniques for improvising custom-made magic number squares; Dana Mackenzie describes how mathematicians are making essential contributions to the development of synthetic biology; Steven Strogatz tells us why it's worth writing about math for people who are alienated from it; Lisa Rougetet traces the earliest written descriptions of Nim, a popular game of mathematical strategy; Scott Aaronson looks at the unexpected implications of testing numbers for randomness; and much, much more.

In addition to presenting the year's most memorable writings on mathematics, this must-have anthology includes a bibliography of other notable writings and an introduction by the editor, Mircea Pitici. This book belongs on the shelf of anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.

-- "Publishers Weekly"
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BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2016

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The year's finest mathematics writing from around the world

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2016 makes available to a wide audience many articles not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These writings offer surprising insights into the nature, meaning, and practice of mathematics today. They delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday occurrences of math, and take readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates.

Here Burkard Polster shows how to invent your own variants of the Spot It! card game, Steven Strogatz presents young Albert Einstein's proof of the Pythagorean Theorem, Joseph Dauben and Marjorie Senechal find a treasure trove of math in New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Andrew Gelman explains why much scientific research based on statistical testing is spurious. In other essays, Brian Greene discusses the evolving assumptions of the physicists who developed the mathematical underpinnings of string theory, Jorge Almeida examines the misperceptions of people who attempt to predict lottery results, and Ian Stewart offers advice to authors who aspire to write successful math books for general readers. And there's much, much more.

In addition to presenting the year's most memorable writings on mathematics, this must-have anthology includes a bibliography of other notable writings and an introduction by the editor, Mircea Pitici. This book belongs on the shelf of anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.

-- "Math Tango"
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BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2017

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The year's finest mathematics writing from around the world

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2017 makes available to a wide audience many articles not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These writings offer surprising insights into the nature, meaning, and practice of mathematics today. They delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday occurrences of math, and take readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates.

Here Evelyn Lamb describes the excitement of searching for incomprehensibly large prime numbers, Jeremy Gray speculates about who would have won math's highest prize--the Fields Medal--in the nineteenth century, and Philip Davis looks at mathematical results and artifacts from a business and marketing viewpoint. In other essays, Noson Yanofsky explores the inherent limits of knowledge in mathematical thinking, Jo Boaler and Lang Chen reveal why finger-counting enhances children's receptivity to mathematical ideas, and Carlo Séquin and Raymond Shiau attempt to discover how the Renaissance painter Fra Luca Pacioli managed to convincingly depict his famous rhombicuboctahedron, a twenty-six-sided Archimedean solid. And there's much, much more.

In addition to presenting the year's most memorable writings on mathematics, this must-have anthology includes a bibliography of other notable writings and an introduction by the editor, Mircea Pitici. This book belongs on the shelf of anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2018

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The year's finest mathematical writing from around the world

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2018 makes available to a wide audience many pieces not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These essays delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday aspects of math, offering surprising insights into its nature, meaning, and practice--and taking readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates.

James Grime shows how to build subtly mischievous dice for playing slightly unfair games and Michael Barany traces how our appreciation of the societal importance of mathematics has developed since World War II. In other essays, Francis Su extolls the inherent values of learning, doing, and sharing mathematics, and Margaret Wertheim takes us on a mathematical exploration of the mind and the world--with glimpses at science, philosophy, music, art, and even crocheting. And there's much, much more.

In addition to presenting the year's most memorable math writing, this must-have anthology includes an introduction by the editor and a bibliography of other notable pieces on mathematics.

This is a must-read for anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2019

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2019

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The year's finest mathematical writing from around the world

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2019 makes available to a wide audience many articles not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These essays delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday aspects of math, offering surprising insights into its nature, meaning, and practice--and taking readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates.

In this volume, Moon Duchin explains how geometric-statistical methods can be used to combat gerrymandering, Jeremy Avigad illustrates the growing use of computation in making and verifying mathematical hypotheses, and Kokichi Sugihara describes how to construct geometrical objects with unusual visual properties. In other essays, Neil Sloane presents some recent additions to the vast database of integer sequences he has catalogued, and Alessandro Di Bucchianico and his colleagues highlight how mathematical methods have been successfully applied to big-data problems. And there's much, much more.

In addition to presenting the year's most memorable math writing, this must-have anthology includes an introduction by the editor and a bibliography of other notable writings on mathematics.

This is a must-read for anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2021

BEST WRITING ON MATHEMATICS 2021

By: Pitici, Mircea
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The year's finest mathematical writing from around the world

This annual anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy the pieces collected here. These essays--from leading names and fresh new voices--delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday aspects of math, offering surprising insights into its nature, meaning, and practice, and taking readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates.

Here, Viktor Blåsjö gives a brief history of "lockdown mathematics"; Yelda Nasifoglu decodes the politics of a seventeenth-century play in which the characters are geometric shapes; and Andrew Lewis-Pye explains the basic algorithmic rules and computational procedures behind cryptocurrencies. In other essays, Terence Tao candidly recalls the adventures and misadventures of growing up to become a leading mathematician; Natalie Wolchover shows how old math gives new clues about whether time really flows; and David Hand discusses the problem of "dark data"--information that is missing or ignored. And there is much, much more.

Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

By: Pinker, Steven
$20.00
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"If I could give each of you a graduation present, it would be this--the most inspiring book I've ever read. --Bill Gates

A provocative history of violence--from the New York Times bestselling author of The Stuff of Thought, The Blank Slate, and Enlightenment Now.

Believe it or not, today we may be living in the most peaceful moment in our species' existence. In his gripping and controversial new work, New York Times bestselling author Steven Pinker shows that despite the ceaseless news about war, crime, and terrorism, violence has actually been in decline over long stretches of history. Exploding myths about humankind's inherent violence and the curse of modernity, this ambitious book continues Pinker's exploration of the essence of human nature, mixing psychology and history to provide a remarkable picture of an increasingly enlightened world.

BETWEEN COPERNICUS AND GALILEO: Christoph Clavius and the Collapse of Ptolemaic Cosmology

BETWEEN COPERNICUS AND GALILEO: Christoph Clavius and the Collapse of Ptolemaic Cosmology

By: Lattis, James M
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Between Copernicus and Galileo is the story of Christoph Clavius, the Jesuit astronomer who played a central role in integrating traditional Ptolemaic astronomy and Aristotelian world views into the Church's accepted teachings. When Galileo first collided with the Church over his own work, he was in effect combatting a cosmological and intellectual agenda Clavius had worked to create, and a coterie of Church intellectuals Clavius had helped to educate. By tracing Clavius's views from their medieval origins into the seventeenth century, Lattis illuminates the conceptual shift from Ptolemaic to Copernican astronomy and the social, intellectual, and theological impact of the Scientific Revolution.
BEYOND DESERT WALLS

BEYOND DESERT WALLS

By: Lamberton, Ken
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"From the upper bunk where I write, a narrow window allows me a southern exposure of the desert beyond this prison. Saguaro cacti, residents here long before this rude concrete pueblo, fill the upper part of my frame. If I could open the window and reach out across the razed ground, sand traps, and shining perimeter fence, I might touch their fluted sides, their glaucous and waxen skins."

For some people, even prison cannot shut out the natural world.

A teacher and family man incarcerated in Arizona State Prison--the result of a transgression that would cost him a dozen years of his life--Ken Lamberton can see beyond his desert walls. In essays that focus on the natural history of the region and on his own personal experiences with desert places, the author of the Burroughs Medal-winning book Wilderness and Razor Wire takes readers along as he revisits the Southwest he knew when he was free, and as he makes an inner journey toward self-awareness. Whether considering the seemingly eternal cacti or the desolate beauty of the Pinacate, he draws on sharp powers of observation to re-create what lies beyond his six-by-eight cell and to contemplate the thoughts that haunt his mind as tenaciously as the kissing bugs that haunt his sleep.

Ranging from prehistoric ruins on the Colorado Plateau to the shores of the Sea of Cortez, these writings were begun before Wilderness and Razor Wire and serve as a prequel to it. They seamlessly interweave natural and personal history as Lamberton explores caves, canyons, and dry ponds, evoking the mysteries and rhythms of desert life that elude even the most careful observers. He offers new ways of thinking about how we relate to the natural world, and about the links between those relationships and the ones we forge with other people. With the assurance of a gifted writer, he seeks to make sense of his own place in life, crafting words to come to terms with an insanity of his own making, to look inside himself and understand his passions and flaws.

Whether considering rattlesnakes of the hellish summer desert or the fellow inmates of his own personal hell, Lamberton finds meaningful connections--to his crime and his place, to the people who remained in his life and those who didn't. But what he reveals in Beyond Desert Walls ultimately arises from language itself: a deep, and perhaps even frightening, understanding of a singular human nature.

BEYOND GEOMETRY: Classic Papers from Riemann to Einstein

BEYOND GEOMETRY: Classic Papers from Riemann to Einstein

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Eight essays trace seminal ideas about the foundations of geometry that led to the development of Einstein's general theory of relativity. This original Dover publication is the only English-language collection of these important papers, some of which are extremely hard to find.
Contents include "On the Hypotheses which Lie at the Foundations of Geometry" by Georg Friedrich Riemann; "On the Facts which Lie at the Foundations of Geometry" and "On the Origin and Significance of Geometrical Axioms" by Hermann von Helmholtz; "A Comparative Review of Recent Researches in Geometry" by Felix Klein; "On the Space Theory of Matter" by William Kingdon Clifford; "On the Foundations of Geometry" by Henri Poincaré; "Euclidean Geometry and Riemannian Geometry" by Elie Cartan; and "The Problem of Space, Ether, and the Field in Physics" by Albert Einstein.
These remarkably accessible papers will appeal to students of modern physics and mathematics, as well as anyone interested in the origins and sources of Einstein's most profound work. Peter Pesic of St. John's College in Santa Fe, New Mexico, provides an introduction, as well as notes that offer insights into each paper.
BEYOND THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE

BEYOND THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE

By: Freud, Sigmund
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In reasoned progression he outlined core psychoanalytic concepts, such as repression, free association and libido. Of the various English translations of Freud's major works to appear in his lifetime, only one was authorized by Freud himself: The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud under the general editorship of James Strachey.

Freud approved the overall editorial plan, specific renderings of key words and phrases, and the addition of valuable notes, from bibliographical and explanatory. Many of the translations were done by Strachey himself; the rest were prepared under his supervision. The result was to place the Standard Edition in a position of unquestioned supremacy over all other existing versions.Newly designed in a uniform format, each new paperback in the Standard Edition opens with a biographical essay on Freud's life and work --along with a note on the individual volume--by Peter Gay, Sterling Professor of History at Yale.
BEYOND THE SELF: CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN BUDDHISM AND NEUROSCIENCE

BEYOND THE SELF: CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN BUDDHISM AND NEUROSCIENCE

By: Singer, Wolf
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Converging and diverging views on the mind, the self, consciousness, the unconscious, free will, perception, meditation, and other topics.

Buddhism shares with science the task of examining the mind empirically; it has pursued, for two millennia, direct investigation of the mind through penetrating introspection. Neuroscience, on the other hand, relies on third-person knowledge in the form of scientific observation. In this book, Matthieu Ricard, a Buddhist monk trained as a molecular biologist, and Wolf Singer, a distinguished neuroscientist--close friends, continuing an ongoing dialogue--offer their perspectives on the mind, the self, consciousness, the unconscious, free will, epistemology, meditation, and neuroplasticity.

Ricard and Singer's wide-ranging conversation stages an enlightening and engaging encounter between Buddhism's wealth of experiential findings and neuroscience's abundance of experimental results. They discuss, among many other things, the difference between rumination and meditation (rumination is the scourge of meditation, but psychotherapy depends on it); the distinction between pure awareness and its contents; the Buddhist idea (or lack of one) of the unconscious and neuroscience's precise criteria for conscious and unconscious processes; and the commonalities between cognitive behavioral therapy and meditation. Their views diverge (Ricard asserts that the third-person approach will never encounter consciousness as a primary experience) and converge (Singer points out that the neuroscientific understanding of perception as reconstruction is very like the Buddhist all-discriminating wisdom) but both keep their vision trained on understanding fundamental aspects of human life.

BEYOND UNCERTAINTY: Heisenberg, Quantum Physics, and the Bomb

BEYOND UNCERTAINTY: Heisenberg, Quantum Physics, and the Bomb

By: Cassidy, David C
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"A fascinating, well-documented biography." --New York Times Book Review

"A monumental effort." --New York Review of Books

"An excellent piece of science writing. . . . Cassidy does not so much exculpate Heisenberg as explain him, with a transparency that makes this biography a pleasure to read." --Los Angeles Times

"Cassidy has written the definitive biography of a great and tragic physicist." --Richard Rhodes, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Making of the Atomic Bomb

Since the fall of the Soviet Union, long-suppressed information has emerged on Werner Heisenberg's role in the Nazi atomic bomb project. In Beyond Uncertainty, Cassidy interprets this and other previously unknown material within the context of his vast research and tackles the vexing questions of a scientist's personal responsibility and guilt when serving an abhorrent military regime.

David C. Cassidy is the author of Beyond Uncertainty: Heisenberg, Quantum Physics, and the Bomb; A Short History of Physics in the American Century; J. Robert Oppenheimer and the American Century; and Einstein and Our World. He is the recipient of the Abraham Pais Prize for History of Physics from the American Physical Society, the Science Writing Award from the American Institute of Physics, the Pfizer Award from the History of Science Society, and an honorary doctorate from Purdue University. Dr. Cassidy is Professor of Natural Sciences at Hofstra University and resides in Bay Shore, New York.

BEYOND WAR: HUMAN POTENTIAL FOR PEACE

BEYOND WAR: HUMAN POTENTIAL FOR PEACE

By: Fry, Douglas P
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A profoundly heartening view of human nature, Beyond War offers a hopeful prognosis for a future without war. Douglas P. Fry convincingly argues that our ancient ancestors were not innately warlike--and neither are we. He points out that, for perhaps ninety-nine percent of our history, for well over a million years, humans lived in nomadic hunter-and-gatherer groups, egalitarian bands where warfare was a rarity. Drawing on archaeology and fascinating recent fieldwork on hunter-gatherer bands from around the world, Fry debunks the idea that war is ancient and inevitable. For instance, among Aboriginal Australians, warfare was an extreme anomaly. Fry also points out that even today, when war seems ever present, the vast majority of us live peaceful, nonviolent lives. We are not as warlike as we think, and if we can learn from our ancestors, we may be able to move beyond war to provide real justice and security for the world.
BIBLICAL GAMES: Game Theory and the Hebrew Bible

BIBLICAL GAMES: Game Theory and the Hebrew Bible

By: Brams, Steven J
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BACK IN PRINT with a new preface and a new chapter

In this unusual book, first published by The MIT Press in 1980 and now updated with a new chapter, Steven Brams applies the mathematical theory of games to the Hebrew Bible. Brams's thesis is that God and the human biblical characters acted rationally--that is, given their preferences and their knowledge of other players' preferences, they made strategy choices that led to the best attainable outcomes. Beginning with the Creation and focusing on those stories richest in conflict and intrigue, Brams uses elementary game-theoretic tools to elucidate the rational calculations of biblical players and to show precisely the manner in which they sought to achieve their goals. He relies almost exclusively on noncooperative theory, making use of both game tree and matrix forms of games. Brams uses his strategic analyses to build a detailed assessment of God's character and motivations, including the reasons for His frequently wrathful behavior. Brams's insights have application to biblical studies, the philosophy of religion, political theory, and game theory and methodology.In the new chapter, Brams surveys the literature of the past twenty years on political-strategic interpretations of the Hebrew Bible. He also extends the game-theoretic analysis, using the theory of moves, to study a counterfactual situation--what if Abraham had refused God's command to sacrifice Isaac?--and to examine the rationality of believing in a superior being.

BIOLOGY AS IDEOLOGY

BIOLOGY AS IDEOLOGY

By: Lewontin, Richard C
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Following in the fashion of Stephen Jay Gould and Peter Medawar, one of the world's leading scientists examines how pure science is in fact shaped and guided by social and political needs and assumptions.
BIRD BRAIN: AN EXPLORATION OF AVIAN INTELLIGENCE

BIRD BRAIN: AN EXPLORATION OF AVIAN INTELLIGENCE

By: Emery, Nathan
$29.95
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Why birds are smarter than we think

Birds have not been known for their high IQs, which is why a person of questionable intelligence is sometimes called a birdbrain. Yet in the past two decades, the study of avian intelligence has witnessed dramatic advances. From a time when birds were seen as simple instinct machines responding only to stimuli in their external worlds, we now know that some birds have complex internal worlds as well. This beautifully illustrated book provides an engaging exploration of the avian mind, revealing how science is exploding one of the most widespread myths about our feathered friends--and changing the way we think about intelligence in other animals as well.

Bird Brain looks at the structures and functions of the avian brain, and describes the extraordinary behaviors that different types of avian intelligence give rise to. It offers insights into crows, jays, magpies, and other corvids--the "masterminds" of the avian world--as well as parrots and some less-studied species from around the world. This lively and accessible book shows how birds have sophisticated brains with abilities previously thought to be uniquely human, such as mental time travel, self-recognition, empathy, problem solving, imagination, and insight.

Written by a leading expert and featuring a foreword by Frans de Waal, renowned for his work on animal intelligence, Bird Brain shines critical new light on the mental lives of birds.

BIRDPEDIA: A BRIEF COMPENDIUM OF AVIAN LORE

BIRDPEDIA: A BRIEF COMPENDIUM OF AVIAN LORE

By: Leahy, Christopher W
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A captivating A-Z treasury about birds and birding

Birdpedia is an engaging illustrated compendium of bird facts and birding lore. Featuring nearly 200 entries--on topics ranging from plumage and migration to birds in art, literature, and folklore--this enticing collection is brimming with wisdom and wit about all things avian.

Christopher Leahy sheds light on hawk-watching, twitching, and other rituals from the sometimes mystifying world of birding that entail a good deal more than their names imply. He explains what kind of bird's nests you can eat, why mocking birds mock, and many other curiosities that have induced otherwise sane people to peer into treetops using outrageously expensive optical equipment. Leahy shares illuminating insights about pioneering ornithologists such as John James Audubon and Florence Bailey, and describes unique bird behaviors such as anting, caching, duetting, and mobbing. He discusses avian fossils, the colloquial naming of birds, the science and history of ornithology, and more. The book's convenient size makes it the perfect traveling companion to take along on your own avian adventures.

With charming illustrations by Abby McBride, Birdpedia is a marvelous mix of fact and fancy that is certain to delight seasoned birders and armchair naturalists alike.

  • Features a real cloth cover with an elaborate foil-stamped design
  • BIRDS AND US

    BIRDS AND US

    By: Birkhead, Tim
    $35.00
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    From award-winning author and ornithologist Tim Birkhead, a sweeping history of the long and close relationship between birds and humans

    Since the dawn of human history, birds have stirred our imagination, inspiring and challenging our ideas about science, faith, art, and philosophy. We have worshipped birds as gods, hunted them for sustenance, adorned ourselves with their feathers, studied their wings to engineer flight, and, more recently, attempted to protect them. In Birds and Us, award-winning writer and ornithologist Tim Birkhead takes us on a dazzling epic journey through our mutual history with birds, from the ibises mummified and deified by Ancient Egyptians to the Renaissance fascination with woodpecker anatomy--and from the Victorian obsession with egg collecting to today's fight to save endangered species and restore their habitats.

    Spanning continents and millennia, Birds and Us chronicles the beginnings of a written history of birds in ancient Greece and Rome, the obsession with falconry in the Middle Ages, and the development of ornithological science. Moving to the twentieth century, the book tells the story of the emergence of birdwatching and the field study of birds, and how they triggered an extraordinary flowering of knowledge and empathy for birds, eventually leading to today's massive worldwide interest in birds--and the realization of the urgent need to save them.

    Weaving in stories from Birkhead's life as scientist, including far-flung expeditions to wondrous Neolithic caves in Spain and the bustling guillemot colonies of the Faroe Islands, this rich and fascinating book is an unforgettable account of how birds have shaped us, and how we have shaped them.