Sociology and Cultural Studies, General
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God in the Wasteland: The Reality of Truth in a World of Fading Dreams
God in the Wasteland
The Reality of Truth in a World of Fading Dreams
Paperback      ISBN: 0802841791

David F. Wells's award-winning book No Place for Truth - called "a stinging indictment of evangelicalism's theological corruption" by TIME magazine - woke many evangelicals to the fact that their tradition has slowly but surely capitulated to the values and structures of modernity. In God in the Wasteland Wells continues his trenchant analysis of the cultural corruption now weakening the church's thought and witness with the intent of getting evangelicals to rethink their relationship to the "world."
Wells argues that the church is enfeebled in part because it has lost its sense of God's sovereignty and holiness. "The fundamental problem in the evangelical world today," says Wells, "is that God rests too inconsequentially upon the church. His truth is too distant, his grace is too ordinary, his judgment is too benign, his gospel is too easy, and his Christ is too common." God has become weightless to the extent that the church no longer allows him to shape its character, outlook, and practice.
Evangelicals have become heavily invested in the mind-set of modernity - a mind-set that Wells correlates with the biblical concept of the "world." They have become enamored of advanced management and marketing techniques, have blurred the distinctions between Christ and culture, and have largely abandoned their traditional emphasis on divine transcendence in favor of an emphasis on divine immanence. In doing so, they have produced a faith in God that is of little consequence to those who believe. An extensive survey of students at seven evangelical theological seminaries - the results of which are included in this book - indicates that the next generation of evangelical leaders is as caught up in these trends as the laity.
Arguing that the church's diminished appetite for truth will not be restored without repentance and a fresh encounter with the holy God, Wells makes a compelling case for urgently needed reform in the evangelical church. Without such reform, he says, evangelical faith will be lost in and to the modernity that has invaded the church.

The History of Sexuality: An Introduction
The History of Sexuality
An Introduction
Paperback      ISBN: 0679724699

Michel Foucult offers an iconoclastic exploration of why we feel compelled to continually analyze and discuss sex, and of the social and mental mechanisms of power that cause us to direct the questions of what we are to what our sexuality is.

There Are No Children Here: The Story of Two Boys Growing Up in the Other America
There Are No Children Here
The Story of Two Boys Growing Up in the Other America
Paperback      ISBN: 0385265565

This is the moving and powerful account of tworemarkable boys struggling to survive in Chicago'sHenry Horner Homes, a public housing complexdisfigured by crime and neglect."

America Calling: A Social History of the Telephone to 1940
America Calling
A Social History of the Telephone to 1940
Paperback      ISBN: 0520086473

The telephone looms large in our lives, as ever present in modern societies as cars and television. Claude Fischer presents the first social history of this vital but little-studied technology--how we encountered, tested, and ultimately embraced it with enthusiasm. Using telephone ads, oral histories, telephone industry correspondence, and statistical data, Fischer's work is a colorful exploration of how, when, and why Americans started communicating in this radically new manner.

Studying three California communities, Fischer uncovers how the telephone became integrated into the private worlds and community activities of average Americans in the first decades of this century. Women were especially avid in their use, a phenomenon which the industry first vigorously discouraged and then later wholeheartedly promoted. Again and again Fischer finds that the telephone supported a wide-ranging network of social relations and played a crucial role in community life, especially for women, from organizing children's relationships and church activities to alleviating the loneliness and boredom of rural life.

Deftly written and meticulously researched, America Calling adds an important new chapter to the social history of our nation and illuminates a fundamental aspect of cultural modernism that is integral to contemporary life.

Waiting for the Barbarians
Waiting for the Barbarians
Hardcover      ISBN: 1859848826

This work presents the portrait of a feckless American establishment gone large in the stomach and soft in the head. The author's acerbic remarks on the 1996 Presidential election takes into account the farce of Steve Forbes's primary campaign, the non-candidacy of General Colin Powell, the comings and goings of Dick Morris, Senator Robert Dole's triumphant return to television as a pitchman for Air France, the building of Hillary Rodham Clinton's Potemkin village in Iowa, and the sublime vacuity of President Clinton's inaugural address.

Return of the Tribal: A Celebration of Body Adornment : Piercing, Tattooing, Scarification, Body Painting
Return of the Tribal
A Celebration of Body Adornment : Piercing, Tattooing, Scarification, Body Painting
Paperback      ISBN: 0892816104

A photographic exploration of the modern revival of piercing, tattooing, scarification, and body painting that reveals its origins in tribal culture and practices.
Since earliest times, tribal cultures around the world have used body marks and modifications to indicate membership and rank within the group, identify with spiritual totems, express sacrifice and loss, and enhance physical attraction and sexual enjoyment. Today we are witnessing a renaissance of interest in body adornment that many interpret as a return to our tribal beginnings--a way to identify who we are in an urban world that has lost its sense of community. Return of the Tribal takes a non-judgmental look at a great variety of practices of body adornment and modification--from prehistoric and aboriginal to those of modern urban tribals in cities such as London, New York, Tokyo, and Amsterdam. From the beautiful to the bizarre, the author shows the many beautiful and bizarre ways people choose to alter their appearance.

Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology
Technopoly
The Surrender of Culture to Technology
Paperback      ISBN: 0679745408

In this witty, often terrifying work of cultural criticism, the author of Amusing Ourselves to Death chronicles our transformation into a Technopoly: a society that no longer merely uses technology as a support system but instead is shaped by it--with radical consequences for the meanings of politics, art, education, intelligence, and truth.

Absinthe: History in a Bottle
Absinthe
History in a Bottle
Paperback      ISBN: 0811816508

One hundred forty-four proof, notoriously addictive, and the drug of choice for nineteenth-century poets, absinthe is gaining bootleg popularity after almost a century of being banned. Due to popular demand, Absinthe: History in a Bottle is back in paperback with a handsome new cover. Like the author's bestselling The Martini and The Cigar, it is a potent brew of wild nights and social history, fact and trivia, gorgeous art and beautiful artifacts. As intoxicating as its subject, Absinthe makes a memorable gift for anyone who knows how to celebrate vice.

Dumbing Down: Essays on the Strip-Mining of American Culture
Dumbing Down
Essays on the Strip-Mining of American Culture
Paperback      ISBN: 0393317234

With vigor, wit, learning, common sense, and urgency, twenty-three essayist--including John Simon, Cynthia Ozick, Phillip Lopate, George F. Kennan, Sven Birkerts, Joseph Epstein, and Brad Leithauser--examine aspects of our pan-cultural "dumbing down" and offer both diagnoses of and possible cures for this wasting disease.

Lipstick Traces: A Secret History of the 20th Century
Lipstick Traces
A Secret History of the 20th Century
Paperback      ISBN: 0674535812

This is a secret history of modern times, told by way of what conventional history tries to exclude. Lipstick Traces tells a story as disruptive and compelling as the century itself. Hip, metaphorical and allusive...--Gail Caldwell, Boston Sunday Globe. Full-color illustrations and halftones.