Staff Pick

Langlands’ tenacious curiosity about the Old Ways gains eloquence and momentum in Craeft a deft, engaging meditation on utterly misunderstood but once critical pursuits such as haymaking, weaving, and fence-mending, pursuits that continue to leave their mark on our language, culture, and landscapes, if no longer our bodies and minds. Craeft should not be understood as some commodified, heirloom mark of human hands for which you pay more at the farmer's market stall, but is itself power and agency, traditionally understood. Not to be missed are Langland’s thoughts on skep beekeeping and their similarities to modern day obstetrics. 

Cræft: An Inquiry Into the Origins and True Meaning of Traditional Crafts Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393635904
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - January 2nd, 2018

Staff Pick

“Tell me about a complicated man. / Muse, tell me how he wandered and was lost / when he had wrecked the holy town of Troy, / and where he went, and who he met, the pain / he suffered in the storms at sea, and how / he worked to save his life and bring his man / back home.” In a graceful return to iambic pentameter, Emily Wilson’s new translation of The Odyssey (W.W. Norton, $39.95) is resonant and light footed, swift and lithe. It also happens to be the first, in all 432 years since Homer was first translated into English, by a woman. The volume itself is a luminous beauty, well spaced, readable, with a thorough glossary, hand-drawn maps, and an enthralling but unencumbered translator’s note that heroically balances the interests and prerogatives of both casual or first-time readers and scholars long engaged with the epic.  It has never been a better time to pick up this foundational work!

The Odyssey Cover Image
By Homer, Emily Wilson (Translated by)
ISBN: 9780393089059
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - November 7th, 2017

Staff Pick

The Oxford History of the United States series (to which magna opera such as McPherson’s Battle Cry of Freedom and Gordon Wood’s Empire of Liberty belong) marks its latest installment, The Republic for Which It Stands: The United States During Reconstruction and the Gilded Age, 1865-1896 (Oxford, $35). The volume begins with the funeral of Lincoln—compared to whom the presidents that follow are disappointing in all but their facial hair—and continues through the 1876 election.  A Stanford historian of Native Americans and the American West, Richard White deftly dismantles the stock cutouts of lone robber barons that have long populated this “historical flyover country.” With lively prose, ambitious scope, and an all-too keen sense of irony, he gives us a vivid depiction of an age of contradictions. White considers Reconstruction and the Gilded Age to have “gestated together” on sublime post-Civil War ideals, both quickly scaled back “to the unforgiving metrics of recalcitrant reality.”  With balanced, tenderly evoked portraits of the “uncommon men and women,” the dizzying spin of technological progress, political corruption, immigration, urbanization, Westward expansion, crusading causes, economic inequality, and high-minded hope, are brought to a pace at which we can make out the foundations of the similarly complex epoch we now inhabit.

The Republic for Which It Stands: The United States During Reconstruction and the Gilded Age, 1865-1896 Cover Image
ISBN: 9780199735815
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Oxford University Press, USA - September 1st, 2017