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“I love the pulse of Sam Pink’s sentences, the way they can hold the gorgeous and the grisly and the hilarious all at the same time. The Garbage Times/White Ibis thrilled me and messed me up, left me feeling a little dazed and a lot changed.” —Laura van den Berg, author of The Third Hotel and Find Me

From the freezing alleys of Chicago to the dew-blanketed bayou of Florida. From bouncing drunks and cleaning up puke to biking through the swamp laughing at peacocks. Freeze to thaw. Filth and broken glass and black water backed up in showers; lizards and Girl Scouts and themed birthday parties. A baby rat freed from the bottom of a dumpster becomes a white ibis wandering the wet driveway after a storm. Goodbye, hello, goodbye. It was the garbage times; it was time for something else. A tale of two tales, connected by a mysterious sunlit portal.

The edition is designed with tête-bêche binding as a single volume.

Product Categories: Fiction, Literary, and Novella.  Product Tags: The Garbage Times/White Ibis.  Book Author: Sam Pink.

“More than a survey of the prophet’s life and times, this book is an introduction to the stunning diversity of Islam and the ways in which Muslims think, dream, and make Muhammad into their very own prophet.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

He ranks among the most venerated historical figures in the world, as well as among the most contested. Muhammad: Forty Introductions offers a distinct and nuanced take on the life and teachings of the prophet Muhammad, using a traditional genre of Islamic literature called the forty hadiths collection.

Hadiths are the reported sayings and actions of Muhammad that have been collected by the tens of thousands throughout Islamic history. There is a tradition in which Muslim scholars take from this vast textual ocean to compile their own smaller collections of forty hadiths, an act of curation that allows them to present their particular understanding of Muhammad’s legacy and the essential points of Islam.

Here, Michael Muhammad Knight offers forty narrations that provide windows into the diverse ways in which Muslims envision Muhammad. He also examines his own relationship to Muslim traditions while exploring such topics as law, mysticism, sectarianism, gender, and sexuality. By revealing the Prophet to be an ongoing construction, he carefully unravels notions about Islam’s center and margins.

Product Categories: Biography & Autobiography, Education, Forthcoming, History, Nonfiction, and Religion/Spirituality.  Book Author: Michael Muhammad Knight.

Today we live in a “glut of images.” What does that mean? Men and Apparitions takes on a central question of our era through the wild musings and eventful life of Ezekiel Hooper Stark, cultural anthropologist, ethnographer, specialist in family photographs.

We are the Picture People. I name us Picture People because most special and obvious about the species is, our kind lives on and for pictures, lives as and for images, our species takes pictures, makes pix, thinks in pix. 

What is behind the human drive to create, remake, and keep images from and of everything? What does it mean that we now live in a “glut of images?” Men and Apparitions takes on a central question of our era through the wild musings and eventful life of Ezekiel Hooper Stark, cultural anthropologist, ethnographer, specialist in family photographs. As Ezekiel progresses from a child obsessed with his family’s photo albums to a young and passionate researcher to a man devastated by betrayal in love, his academic fascinations determine and reflect his course, touching on such various subjects as discarded images, pet pictures, spirit mediums, the tragic life of his long-dead cousin the semi-famous socialite Clover Adams, and the nature of contemporary masculinity.

Kaleidoscopic and encyclopedic, madcap and wry, this book that showcases Lynne Tillman not only as a brilliant original novelist  but also as one of our most prominent thinkers on culture and visual culture today.

Product Categories: Art, Featured, Fiction, Homepage Featured Title, Literary, and Photography.  Product Tags: Men and Apparitions.  Book Author: Lynne Tillman.

In this highly anticipated follow-up to White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son, activist Tim Wise examines the way in which institutional racism continues to shape the contours of daily life in the United States, and the ways in which white Americans reap enormous privileges from it.

The essays included in this collection span the last ten years of Wise’s writing and cover all the hottest racial topics of the past decade: affirmative action, Hurricane Katrina, racial tension in the wake of the Duke lacrosse scandal, white school shootings, racial profiling, phony racial unity in the wake of 9/11, and the political rise of Barack Obama. Wise’s commentaries make forceful yet accessible arguments that serve to counter both white denial and complacency—two of the main obstacles to creating a more racially equitable and just society. Speaking Treason Fluently is a superbly crafted collection of Wise’s best work, which reveals the ongoing salience of race in America today and demonstrates that racial privilege is not only a real and persistent problem, but one that ultimately threatens the health and well-being of the entire society.

Product Categories: Current Events, Discrimination & Race Relations, Nonfiction, Political Science, Politics, and Social Sciences.  Book Author: Tim Wise.

Anyone can write a rant against the state of American democracy today. Anyone can talk trash about politicians, or bemoan the apathy of the electorate, the low turnout, the low attention span, the cynicism. How To Get Stupid White Men… is a guide to getting off one’s cynical ass and doing something about it. Over the past six months, William Upski Wimsatt has been working with a group of people who have hitherto engaged in myriad forms of social work and political activism to develop a strategy that will effect positive change on American society through the electoral process. Rather than taking to the streets, rather than “bombing [graffitting] the suburbs,” Wimsatt and his colleagues plan to “throw the bums out.” This book will tell the story of 19 such cases over the past couple of years and outline all the potential races for 2004, describing the tactics to be utilized in an array of contested races across the country by creating coalitions of gay, enviro, Black, Latino and other young groups of voters. The goal is to make this the most useful politically life-changing book any 15-35 year old could read this election year.

Product Categories: Current Events, Economics, Education, Human Rights, Political Science, and Politics.  Book Author: Adrienne Maree Brown and William Upski Wimsatt.

A truly remarkable collection of activist writings across all topics and perspectives, all while recounting a personal evolution from idealistic urban wanderer to community organizer, from graffiti writer to renowned essayist.

Author William Upski Wimsatt delivers stories, strategies, suggestions, straight talk, and conversations with maverick activists. He advocates youth taking charge of their own education, whether it’s in or out of school, and promotes the power of young people engaging in philanthropy. A truly original treatise from the paradigm-flipping theorist of youth activism, No More Prisons goes beyond pinpointing problems to hone in on solutions, and declares that today’s youth is poised to surpass the activist efforts of the 1960s generation.

Product Categories: Education, History, Nonfiction, Politics, and Social Sciences.  Book Author: William Upski Wimsatt.

Should graffiti writers organize to tear up the cities, or should they really be bombing the ‘burbs? That’s the question posed by William Upski Wimsatt in his seminal foray into the world of hip-hop, rap, and street art, and the culture and politics that surround it.

Taking on a broad range of topics, including suburban sprawl, racial identity, and youth activism, Wimsatt (a graffiti artist himself) uses a kaleidoscopic approach that combines stories, cartoons, interviews, disses, parodies, and original research to challenge the suburban mindset wherever it’s found: suburbs and corporate headquarters, inner cities and housing projects, even in hip-hop itself. Funny, provocative, and painfully honest, Bomb the Suburbs encourages readers to expand their social boundaries and explore the vibrant, chaotic world that exists beyond their comfort zones.

Product Categories: Art, History, Music, Photography, and Popular Culture.  Book Author: William Upski Wimsatt.

The Sleeping Father begins with a divorced dad who inadvertently combines two incompatible anti-depressant medications, goes into a coma, has a stroke, and emerges with brain damage. His teenage son—the protagonist of the book, Chris—and his teenage daughter—Cathy—inherit money from their grandfather and decide to rehabilitate him on their own. decide to make one.
Absent an adequate father, the children decide to make one, bringing with it a host of difficulties and opportunities. Chris tries everything from sex to capitalism in his search for guidance on the path to adulthood and Cathy, believing her secular Jewishness inadequate in the provision of a benign & divine Father, looks to Catholicism for solace and meaning.
The Sleeping Father explores the shift in the way Americans think about mental health: away from regarding ourselves as being shaped by our upbringings and toward regarding ourselves as being shaped by the chemicals in our bloodstreams. The American family, in this novel, emerges as a microcosm of larger social institutions; Moms and Dads as in-home teachers, priests, presidents, and CEOs. In focusing on the Schwartz family in crisis, Sharpe addresses the larger crisis in faith and authority in contemporary American life.

Product Categories: Fiction, Graphic Novel, Mystery/Thriller/Noir, and Psychology & Psychiatry.  Book Author: Matthew Sharpe.

Live Nude Elf chronicles Reverend Jen’s two-year stint as sex columnist for nerve.com; she details her “sexperiments,” ranging from harrowing (working as a live nude girl at “Wiggles”) to embarrassing (fellatio school) to transcendent (reaching a mystical state through tantric sex). Along the way there is transvestitism, female ejaculation, opium smoking, and heartbreak.

In the Rev’s “art star” world, where a young bisexual boy named Orion has sex with a jar of mayonnaise, the more mundane acts of romance—kissing, buying dinner for a lover, and just making eye contact in the sack—become rare and subversive. The experiments, orgies, balloon fetish parties, a stint as the “lube girl” on a porn set, the “lab partners,” and the late nights begin to wear on the Reverend, who craves normalcy, and the columns change their tone: Jen takes care of a friend’s baby, navigates yuppie bars trying to snag a millionaire hubby, and dates a silver fox, “someone older, distinguished, wealthy, and simply grooving with the eternal now.”

After a decade of New York City affairs, Jen unexpectedly falls in love and must decide: Does the life required of an artist and a sex columnist preclude her from monogamous romantic love?

Product Categories: Gender/Sexuality, Nonfiction, Psychology & Psychiatry, Science, and Social Sciences.  Book Author: Reverend Jen.

Love All the People, a collection of controversial comedian Bill Hicks’ stand-up routines, notebooks, journals, and letters, traces his evolution from brilliant conventional stand-up to something far more interesting and dangerous: a comic speaking without fear. The result is a radical philosopher masquerading as a comedian, plumbing the American psyche with challenging (and side-splitting) conclusions. Hicks, who died of cancer in 1993, didn’t go the easy way with his humor. He attacked the lies that justified the carnage of the Gulf War, the preposterous power of the mainstream media to confuse and corrupt, and the demeaning cynicism of the marketing culture. In Love All the People, that renegade comic artistry that made Bill Hicks an iconoclastic social commentator is recorded, celebrated, and revealed as true genius in this expanded edition that includes additional routines and other writings.

Product Categories: Collection, Humor, Letters/Correspondence, Nonfiction, and Politics.  Book Author: Bill Hicks and John Lahr.

Bottoms Up: Writing About Sex is a collection of writing about desire. The stories are not straight up sexual narrations, but pieces, poems and stories that examine the concept and manifestation of desire itself. Rather than describing the physical acts of sex, the book examines the impetus, experiences, thoughts and feelings that drive desire. Contributors include Eileen Myles, Michelle Tea, Red Jordan Arobateau, Lori Selke, Victoria Brownworth, Robert Gluck and Patrick Califia.

The stories in the collection are varied: an examination of iconoclastic sexuality(musing on what it would be like to both fuck James Dean and fuck like James Dean), the zenith of desire residing in the sweat-darkened leather pants of Lenny Kaye after a Patti Smith Group show, genderqueer cruising, the connection between sex and loss.

The book is not explicitly “gay”, but it is explicitly queer. The stories often break down normal conceptions of gender, eliminating categories such as homo- and heterosexual.

Product Categories: Anthology, Collection, Essays, Gender/Sexuality, Nonfiction, Poetry, and Short Stories.  Book Author: Diana Cage.

After eight years of George Bush’s America, we are at a critical juncture in our nation’s history, when we can put forth a new and bolder kind of democracy. Just as the Civil Rights Movement opened the doors for blacks and other people of color, for women, for the LGBT community, the rise of Barack Obama to the presidency — and the post-Bush society we now encounter — opens new possibilities for our democracy. And it also prompts us to re-examine from a new perspective the old issues around poverty, class, gender, and race. In other words, can the progressive multicultural coalition Barack Obama put together to win the presidency be translated into a progressive multicultural movement?

Open Letters to America is writer Kevin Powell’s celebration of the sudden, mass political engagement of America’s youth, and Americans in general; his thoughts in the aftermath of Obama’s magical and historic presidential campaign; and his open acknowledgment that if 21st-century America is going to be the great world democracy it promises to be, it will be Generations X and Y that make it so.

Product Categories: Current Events, Essays, History, Human Rights, Nonfiction, and Politics.  Book Author: Kevin Powell.

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