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FDL Book Salon Welcomes Joe Burns, Strike Back: Using the Militant Tactics of Labor’s Past to Reignite Public Sector Unionism Today

By: Sunday July 20, 2014 1:59 pm

If we want a stronger public sector labor movement that engages in militant and broad-based social action on behalf of both its members and the people they serve, then a focus on engaging the community is a must. Joe Burns’ book provides some guidance on how we can do that in a way that remains rooted in the values of justice and equality in the workplace that the labor movement has stood for since those textile workers in Lowell, MA walked off the job in the early 19th century. These are values that my father, who came up as a nuclear marine machinist at Norfolk Naval Shipyard, instilled in me as a young boy, and that my grandmother, a veteran of the Civil Rights Movement, instilled in him all the same.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Brad Edmondson, Ice Cream Social: The Struggle for the Soul of Ben & Jerry’s

By: Saturday July 12, 2014 1:59 pm

Like many back in the 1980’s I was an early and enthusiastic convert to Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. The taste was, of course, great and the funky flavors & funny names couldn’t be found anywhere else. I was charmed by the light-hearted fun, in fact, joyous aura around the products and the business. Pretty soon it sunk in that this ice cream wasn’t just a tasty, belt-busting treat but also it was made at a cool, decidedly un-corporate enterprise in bucolic Vermont, by real people who shared a lot of my values. Furthermore they were actually eager to espouse their (& my) values. How bizarre & refreshing was that?!

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Dave Zirin, Brazil’s Dance With the Devil: The World Cup, The Olympics, and the Fight for Democracy

By: Saturday July 5, 2014 1:59 pm

The soccer World Cup is upon us! On the pitch it has been scintillating tournament thus far, with Lionel Messi carrying Argentina, Tim Howard carrying the United States, Arjen Robben carrying the Netherlands, and James Rodriguez carrying Colombia. Meanwhile British Airways carried the English squad on their early journey home and rumors of Cameroonian match-fixing have carried the day in the global media.

While players from around the world have provided us with dazzling moments of skill, stamina, and sangfroid, things haven’t been so pretty off the field. For anyone who wants to better understand the seamy machinations thrumming behind the World Cup’s spectacular outer shell, Dave Zirin is your guy. His new book Brazil’s Dance with the Devil: The World Cup, the Olympics, and the Struggle for Democracy is indispensable reading.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Knut and Masaccio for a Discussion About Thomas Piketty’s Book: Capital in the Twenty-First Century

By: Sunday June 29, 2014 1:59 pm

As most of you know, we were supposed to have this discussion six weeks ago with Piketty himself, but at the last minute he was overwhelmed by requests for interviews on television (including a stint on the Colbert Report) and just about every major newspaper in the English-speaking world and had to cancel. Jane is hopeful that we can have him on sometime in the future, but for the time being you will have to content yourself with Masaccio and myself.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Anand Gopal, No Good Men Among the Living: America, the Taliban, and the War Through Afghan Eyes

By: Sunday June 22, 2014 1:59 pm

Anand Gopal’s No Good Men Among the Living is a deconstruction of the American “War on Terror” as it pertained to Afghanistan. It is an argument that the US military allowed itself to fall into chasing phantoms, put up to search and destroy missions by tribal allies mainly interested in using the Americans to settle feuds and deflect rivals. They got drawn into what anthropologists call the segmentary lineage political system of rural Afghanistan.

In short, as Gopal tells the story, there was no Taliban activity in Afghanistan to speak of by 2002, but the US military machine required an enemy.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Edward Renehan, Pete Seeger vs. The Un-Americans: A Tale of the Blacklist

By: Saturday June 14, 2014 1:59 pm

I was a protégé  of Pete Seeger for over 40 years, and like the author of today’s book, Ed Renehan, a friend of both Pete & his amazing wife, Toshi. Ed’s book, Pete Seeger vs. the Un-Americans, explores Seeger’s interaction with the House UnAmerican Activities Committee (HUAC for short), colloquially known as the McCarthy Hearings, after Senator Joe McCarthy, who presided over the Committee for many years.

FDL and the Book Salons Need Your Help

By: Sunday June 1, 2014 12:00 pm

I’ve been here at FDL for a long time, and I’ve had the honor to work with many outstanding, nationally-recognized journalists on the staff, and with the best members (you) that any site could want. Please help us continue the excellent reporting and analysis of important topics.

We need your help, financial assistance, to keep FDL open for your Voice and all Progressive Voices. Please give what you can.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes June Carbone and Naomi Cahn, Marriage Markets: How Inequality Is Remaking the American Family

By: Saturday May 17, 2014 1:59 pm

While the word “family” may still conjure up an image of a two married parents living with their 2.5 children in the suburbs, Dad heading off to work every morning while Mom takes care of the kids, this image is more myth than reality, a stubborn ideological resistance to seeing the vast transformations that have rocked American family life in recent decades. As June Carbone and Naomi Cahn demonstrate with exceptional rigor, clarity, and elegance, the white picket fences of this mythical family have been swept away by a series of economic, social, and cultural shifts that have altered the “gender bargain” at the core of the traditional family.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Stephen Kinzer, The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles and Their Secret World War

By: Saturday May 10, 2014 1:59 pm

Stephen Kinzer has many fine qualities as a chronicler of recent U.S. foreign relations: his first-hand experience of diverse regions gained from journalistic assignments around the world, his skill at making the past come alive in vivid, pithy prose, and his readiness to engage with the most challenging contemporary policy issues.

For me, though, his most admirable quality is his readiness to put the stories he tells in long-term historical perspective.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes, Melissa Gira Grant, Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work

By: Saturday May 3, 2014 1:59 pm

A worker bee by nature, Melissa Gira Grant is a busy woman. Primarily a freelance journalist covering sex, tech, and politics, in the streets and everywhere else, she came to reporting by way of writing creative nonfiction (for no money), labor organizing (for almost no money), and sex work (to make up for the no money). She writes true stories, mostly about living people, and only incidentally about her own life, although the media loves to construct her biography and make assumptions about her personal life due to her subversive subject matter.

Grant is very direct in her quest to create positive change regarding how sex work is viewed in society and what the work means in general.

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