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This wide-ranging exploration of the apocalypse in Western culture seeks to understand how we have come to be so preoccupied with spectacular visions of our own annihilation—offering abundant examples of the changing nature of our imagined destruction, and predisposing readers to discover many more all around them. • Illustrations showcase the widespread belief in apocalypse, including medieval drawings as well as contemporary photographs and movie stills • A wide-ranging bibliography points the way to significant materials from the fields of history, literature, popular culture, theology, and more
Incisive insights into contemporary pop culture and its apocalyptic bent The world is going to hell. So begins this book, pointing to the prevalence of apocalypse — cataclysmic destruction and nightmarish end-of-the-world scenarios — in contemporary entertainment. In How to Survive the Apocalypse Robert Joustra and Alissa Wilkinson examine a number of popular stories — from the Cylons in Battlestar Galactica to the purging of innocence in Game of Thrones to the hordes of zombies in The Walking Dead — and argue that such apocalyptic stories reveal a lot about us here and now, about how we conceive of our life together, including some of our deepest tensions and anxieties. Besides analyzing the dsytopian shift in popular culture, Joustra and Wilkinson also suggest how Christians can live faithfully and with integrity in such a cultural context.
Toward Decentering the New Testament is the first introductory text to the New Testament written by an African American woman biblical scholar and an Asian-American male biblical scholar. This text privileges the voices, scholarship, and concerns of minoritized nonwhite peoples and communities. It is written from the perspectives of minoritized voices. The first few chapters cover issues such as biblical interpretation, immigration, Roman slavery, intersectionality, and other topics. Questions raised throughout the text focus readers on relevant contemporary issues and encourage critical reflection and dialogue between student-teachers and teacher-students.
This book uses a theory-based inquiry of the nuanced religious messages in the TV series Supernatural, which presents religious themes through horror and fantasy to show a Christianity without Christ. It uncovers how entertainment television provides a conduit for religious messages that speak to the role of contemporary American faith.
An examination of the Americanization of Cold War evangelicalism, it argues that developments like the prospect of nuclear warfare and the creation of the state of Israel that appeared to be fulfilment of biblical prophecy accompanied by secular apocalypticism led to the evangelical subculture's expansion with the rise of the New Christian Right.
American society has changed dramatically since A Culture of Conspiracy was first published in 2001. In this revised and expanded edition, Michael Barkun delves deeper into America's conspiracy sub-culture, exploring the rise of 9/11 conspiracy theories, the "birther" controversy surrounding Barack Obama's American citizenship, and how the conspiracy landscape has changed with the rise of the Internet and other new media. What do UFO believers, Christian millennialists, and right-wing conspiracy theorists have in common? According to Michael Barkun in this fascinating yet disturbing book, quite a lot. It is well known that some Americans are obsessed with conspiracies. The Kennedy assassination, the Oklahoma City bombing, and the 2001 terrorist attacks have all generated elaborate stories of hidden plots. What is far less known is the extent to which conspiracist worldviews have recently become linked in strange and unpredictable ways with other "fringe" notions such as a belief in UFOs, Nostradamus, and the Illuminati. Unraveling the extraordinary genealogies and permutations of these increasingly widespread ideas, Barkun shows how this web of urban legends has spread among subcultures on the Internet and through mass media, how a new style of conspiracy thinking has recently arisen, and how this phenomenon relates to larger changes in American culture. This book, written by a leading expert on the subject, is the most comprehensive and authoritative examination of contemporary American conspiracism to date. Barkun discusses a range of material-involving inner-earth caves, government black helicopters, alien abductions, secret New World Order cabals, and much more-that few realize exists in our culture. Looking closely at the manifestations of these ideas in a wide range of literature and source material from religious and political literature, to New Age and UFO publications, to popular culture phenomena such as The X-Files, and to websites, radio programs, and more, Barkun finds that America is in the throes of an unrivaled period of millenarian activity. His book underscores the importance of understanding why this phenomenon is now spreading into more mainstream segments of American culture.
How can we understand the infinite variety of cities? Darran Anderson seems to exhaust all possibilities in this work of creative nonfiction. Drawing inspiration from Marco Polo and Italo Calvino, Anderson shows that we have much to learn about ourselves by looking not only at the cities we have built, but also at the cities we have imagined. Anderson draws on literature (Gustav Meyrink, Franz Kafka, Jaroslav Hasek, and James Joyce), but he also looks at architectural writings and works by the likes of Bruno Taut and Walter Gropius, Medieval travel memoirs from the Middle East, mid-twentieth-century comic books, Star Trek, mythical lands such as Cockaigne, and the works of Claude Debussy. Anderson sees the visionary architecture dreamed up by architects, artists, philosophers, writers, and citizens as wedded to the egalitarian sense that cities are for everyone. He proves that we must not be locked into the structures that exclude ordinary citizens--that cities evolve and that we can have input. As he says: "If a city can be imagined into being, it can be re-imagined as well."

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