The much celebrated Voltaire (1694-1778) is illustrious today for a single, superlative book: Candide. Yet not only did he spawn some 2 000 now rather neglected stories, plays, essays, & poems, all while schmoozing his endless roll of powerful friends with over 20 000 letters. He enjoyed a rare & impressive second chance at life, indeed almost a second… Read More ›
Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm. Princeton NJ: Princeton UP, 2012. ISBN 978-0691153407. Vastly informative, if over-loyal, history of the central corporate player during Germany’s umatched industrial metamorphosis, from late 18th Century to modern, space-ready days. I give ****/5. * (Webfront illustration caption… Read More ›
Jones, Peter M. Industrial Enlightenment: Science, Technology, & Culture in Birmingham & the West Midlands 1760-1820. Manchester, UK: Manchester UP, 2013 (2008). ISBN 978-0719089121. Outstanding academic analysis & survey of the lush intellectual environment around key Industrial Revolution pioneers during the late… Read More ›
Lynch, Martin. Mining in World History. London: Reaktion Books, 2002. ISBN 978-1861891730. Historical narrative of mining & metallurgy from Renaissance to our age, illuminating its vast political, economic, & technological ramifications. Thoughtful, informative, reads like a novel. I give ****/5. * (Webfront photo caption & credit… Read More ›
A few years ago, board game designer Martin Wallace – usually very apt at gauging & hitting a trend with his popular productions – released a game the success of which he had not expected. Since then this game has consistently featured among the Top 10 most popular productions in the board gaming subculture. By… Read More ›
Bergson, Henri. L’évolution créatrice. Quadrige Grands Textes. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 2007 (1907). ISBN 978-2130562726. This philosophical masterwork is a map of life itself, in its interlocked, continuously forward-thrusting nature. Radically pioneering & influential in its day, now attracting fresh interest. I rate it *****/5.