An engaging book from an organization with an important, hopeful story to share.

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BEYOND CONFLICT

20 YEARS OF PUTTING EXPERIENCE TO WORK FOR PEACE

A conflict-resolution organization looks back on the 20 years since its founding.

How does a country pull itself together and achieve peace after overthrowing a dictatorship? Beyond Conflict (formerly named The Project on Justice in Times of Transition) has a simple, bold answer: Let the country’s leaders hear from those who’ve successfully transitioned from entrenched conflicts. If people like David Ervine, a former member of a Protestant Loyalist paramilitary organization in Northern Ireland; and Joaquín Villalobos, former senior commander of El Salvador’s FMLN guerilla movement, can move beyond violence, pain and anger, the organization says, then others can too. The project was first established after the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe, and its aim is to help leaders “understand the fundamental changes in perceptions and actions that will be required of them if they and their countries are to achieve genuine change.” Over the last 20 years, the project has carried out more than 65 initiatives involving leaders from more than 50 countries. More recently as part of its mission, it began investigating neuroscience and the brain’s role in processing change. Chapters include “The Power of Shared Experience,” “Confronting Dictatorship,” “Changing Mindsets” and “Building Trust Among Enemies,” from contributors such as Phillips, the co-editor and co-founder/chairman of the project; Jan Urban, a Czechoslovak dissident and founding member of the Charter 77 movement; and Monica McWilliams, the founder of the Northern Ireland Women’s Coalition. The personal stories of transformation from those who have been on the front lines are fascinating; in many cases, it seemed almost impossible to bring the people together to talk, when they would ordinarily not even make eye contact. The book recommends using compromise instead of a zero-sum mentality; finding shared dreams; and making concerted efforts toward achieving justice. The book is hopeful and pragmatic as it presents creative solutions, and honest in its acknowledgment of the difficulties in implementing them.

An engaging book from an organization with an important, hopeful story to share.

Pub Date: March 10, 2014

ISBN: 978-0615790572

Page Count: 105

Publisher: EBS Editoriatle Bortolazzi

Review Posted Online: Feb. 17, 2014

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

SEVERAL SHORT SENTENCES ABOUT WRITING

New York Times columnist and editorial board member delivers a slim book for aspiring writers, offering saws and sense, wisdom and waggery, biases and biting sarcasm.

Klinkenborg (Timothy; or, Notes of an Abject Reptile, 2006), who’s taught for decades, endeavors to keep things simple in his prose, and he urges other writers to do the same. (Note: He despises abuses of the word as, as he continually reminds readers.) In the early sections, the author ignores traditional paragraphing so that the text resembles a long free-verse poem. He urges readers to use short, clear sentences and to make sure each one is healthy before moving on; notes that it’s acceptable to start sentences with and and but; sees benefits in diagramming sentences; stresses that all writing is revision; periodically blasts the formulaic writing that many (most?) students learn in school; argues that knowing where you’re headed before you begin might be good for a vacation, but not for a piece of writing; and believes that writers must trust readers more, and trust themselves. Most of Klinkenborg’s advice is neither radical nor especially profound (“Turn to the poets. / Learn from them”), and the text suffers from a corrosive fallacy: that if his strategies work for him they will work for all. The final fifth of the text includes some passages from writers he admires (McPhee, Oates, Cheever) and some of his students’ awkward sentences, which he treats analytically but sometimes with a surprising sarcasm that veers near meanness. He includes examples of students’ dangling modifiers, malapropisms, errors of pronoun agreement, wordiness and other mistakes.

Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-307-26634-7

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2012

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