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Robert M. Keating's story is America's story. Born in Springfield, Massachusetts, in 1862 to poor Irish immigrants, he was just 13 when his father died suddenly. A precocious boy with a knack for mechanics, Keating filed his first patent at 22, started his own bicycle company at 28, and at 32 was producing one of the most innovative bicycle lines in the world in a state-of-the-art factory. Along the way he flirted with baseball, briefly playing in the major leagues and patenting the game's rubberized home plate. In early 1901 Keating developed and marketed a ground-breaking motorcycle before either Indian or Harley-Davidson, and later successfully sued both companies for patent infringement. His company also manufactured automobiles beginning in 1898, producing both electric and gasoline powered vehicles. At the time of his death at 59, Keating held 49 patents--everything from bicycle and motorcycle designs to lunch-chairs to a modern flushing device for toilets. This book tells the story of Keating and his Keating Wheel Company, a Gilded Age story of unbridled inventiveness that encapsulates America's transformation into a society that would forever move on wheels.
A thoughtful analysis of how our world's borders came to be and why we may be emerging from a lengthy period of "cartographical stasis" What is a country? While certain basic tenets--such as the clear demarcation of a country's borders, and the acknowledgment of its sovereignty by other countries and by international governing bodies like the United Nations--seem applicable, journalist Joshua Keating's book explores exceptions to these rules, including "breakaway," "semi-autonomous," or "self-proclaimed" countries such as Abkhazia, Kurdistan, Somaliland, a Mohawk reservation straddling the U.S.-Canada border, and an island nation whose very existence is threatened by climate change. Through stories about these countries' efforts at self-determination, as well as their respective challenges, Keating reveals that there is no universal legal authority determining what we consider a country. He argues that although our current world map appears fairly static, economic, cultural, and environmental forces in the places he describes may spark change. Keating ably bridges history with incisive and sympathetic observations drawn from his travel and personal interviews with residents, political leaders, and scholars in each of these countries.
The psychological roots of authentic spiritual life, by one of the great teachers of contemplative prayer.
Bernhard Rieger reveals how a car commissioned by Hitler and designed by Ferdinand Porsche became a global commodity on a par with Coca-Cola. The Beetle's success hinged on its uncanny ability to capture the imaginations of executives, engineers, advertisers, car collectors, suburbanites, hippies, and everyday drivers aross nations and cultures.
American bikers are the cowboys of the 20th century. Rebellious, nomadic, and clannish, they are often perceived as violent and dangerously antisocial. This arresting collection of duotone portraits displays another side of this unusual population, one which portrays them as vulnerable, romantic, and compassionate. 63 photos.

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