Time for the World to Learn From Africa by Ruth Finnegan is an educational book that brings forth the historical and characteristic details of Africa from the perspective of a seasoned academic and researcher. Ruth Finnegan provides great insights into the African civilization and authoritatively correct widely held misconceptions about the cultural, artistic and educational foundations of the prestigious continent. She does this by tendering empirical evidence both from her research and the documented findings of others; including African academics.
Finnegan’s plunge into the intricacies of the cultural heritage of the 2nd largest continent isn’t without credible basis. Her solid educational background in the humanities, combined with the experience she garnered while living and teaching in Africa helped set the stage for this well structured and informative book. She divides the book into 11 parts, 10 of which are dedicated to specific cultural and artistic aspects of Africa. She begins her journey to set the records straight by first attacking the notion that all cultural subsets of the African civilization are fundamentally alike. Finnegan debunks this misconception by citing examples of multiple African cultural groups that differ in their social, religious and economic forms.
In subsequent chapters, Finnegan backs up her claims that there is much for the world to learn from Africa by delving into the traditional, historical and often overlooked artistic archives of the continent. Her first stop is the literary uniqueness of African cultural groups. Here, she discusses expansively the nature of African literature; pointing out that members of that civilization while not abandoning written literary works, favored oral literary forms and performing arts. I enjoyed this part more than any other because Finnegan doesn’t just treat the subject superficially, rather, she digs deep and supplies detailed information on Africa’s admirable oral-literary expeditions.
Finnegan then proceeds to touch on another of Africa’s intriguing peculiarity: language. She’s quick to highlight the complexity and varying dimensions of African languages, refuting the claim that African Languages are on the whole primitive and devoid of the structure of their western counterparts. I savoured this part as I got to see the enthralling bits of African languages, especially their extremely tonal nature.
The next chapter looks at the place of panegyrics or praise poetry in African traditions and how the vastly stylish literary components of these praise songs or chants are inspiring to both African and non-African artists. In other chapters, Finnegan assesses other deeply entrenched cultural components of African civilizations including the creative use of drums for communication, the intriguing bond that exists between musical performance and dance in Africa, the elaborate attention given to names and the naming process, the role of proverbs in African communication and a host of other captivating African themes.
Finnegan’s attention to detail and comforting simplicity ensures that even high school students can benefit hugely from her findings. She writes in an engaging tone and pulls you tenderly through the pages of the book by using her sharp storytelling skills, allowing you to enjoy your exposure to the cultural and historical details.
Pages: 228 | ASIN: B07RJTBDNF
You may never really give much thought to the ground you walk on. To you, it is simply earth. You may not think about the grass covering it. However, there is a lot to that grass. That grass’ origin, history and even etymology are interesting. You might be wondering, what is there to be intrigued about. Grass plays a significant role in human life. Grass Miracle from the Earth presents a compelling bank of information about grass and everything related to it.
For a book about grass, this one is surprisingly interesting. Most people’s extent of knowledge about grass ends with the green color. Not many know that there are 10,000 grass species on earth. You will even find out that cats use grass for digestive reasons. Therefore this book, if nothing else, is incredibly informative.
After I started reading this book I found myself enjoying it more than expected and even looked forward to the next bit of information. The title evokes this sense of excitement and wonder as well as a tinge of curiosity. The information is engaging accompanied by pictures that support the content and make it wonderfully gripping. The author terms grass as ‘clothes for the earth’ right at the beginning, which is adorable, apt, and is an example of how this book is colored with quirk. Thoughtful information is conveyed in a friendly and informal tone. The language is simple with mild refrain from scientific jargon. The print is well structured with special attention to relevance thus keeping it short.
Ideally, this book is for educational purposes, and is written in a way that suggests that it is aimed at children. However, as an adult, you will find the information interesting enough to hold your interest. However, at times it breaks from the easy flow of information and reads more like a textbook. For example, page 28 discusses seed maturation and vasculature. The reader is directed to research these word, but I hoped this was presented in a simpler way. Understandably, this part is paramount to understanding the essence of grass.
Grass Miracle from the Earth is a brief but informative book that delivers a comprehensive overview of grass and inspires you to learn more about the thing many of us take for granted. This is an unassuming book that is informative and surprisingly absorbing.
Pages: 111 | ASIN: B082KYD8W9
Rethinking Sex Ed is a forward thinking approach to sex education in contemporary society. Why was this an important book for you to write?
I’m the minister of a congregation full of people who almost gave up on religion. We found the old narratives, rules, and instincts off-putting at best. However, we had a deep hunger for spiritual community. So we spent a decade stripping religion down to the bare bones, trying to unearth the principles of spiritual community that are essential, beautiful, and universal.
Part of that journey was the deconstruction of religious ritual. We couldn’t use the rituals we inherited so we just stopped doing them all together. However, after a few years we realized how deeply meaningful rituals are. So we gathered a group to write new ones. Looking into several religious traditions, we wrote rituals for several stages of life—birth, puberty, going to school, leaving home, marriage, and death.
When we were writing the puberty ritual, we realized that when our community pledged to help our young people get ready for healthy lives, it would be pretty meaningless if we didn’t help prepare them for healthy sexual lives.
However, since like everybody else, folks in our community were deconstructing and reconstructing our sexual norms, we weren’t sure exactly how to fulfill that pledge. So our ritual team came to me. “Figure it out and let us know!”
The book is rooted in our own community’s need for clear and healthy guidelines for preparing our young people for their sexual journeys.
In this book you discuss the societal forces that have changed our perception of sex. What do you think is a major contributing factor to this?
I think primarily, it’s how complex society has become.
For most of human history, we lived in agrarian or industrial worlds. Young people could be ready to contribute to society by their late teens. In that context, we developed a simple rule of thumb that captured a great deal of wisdom about healthy sexuality—Don’t have sex until marriage.
But as society has become more complex, young people aren’t established in their careers until their late twenties. Also, puberty happens earlier. The time from sexual maturity to readiness for marriage has moved from three or four years to fifteen to seventeen years. Of course the old rule stopped working.
But when it did, the tendency has been to throw out both the rule—and the ancient wisdom it once captured. I wrote the book to articulate that wisdom and suggest some ways we might apply it in our new social context.
I found this book to be un-biased and informative. What do you hope readers take away from your book?
I guess it would be this.
When it comes to sex, religion and society have been at odds for a long time. Unfortunately, that’s mostly our fault (religious folk).
The world started changing quickly in the 60s. When the old sex norms stopped working, and when people stopped coming to us for sexual instruction, we got frightened. And frightened people tend to get reactionary. We did. We got rigid, rule-driven, and a little bit repressive. We fell back into the sexual craziness that infected Western civilization way back in the second century.
But just as damaging, when society threw out religion’s rule, it also abandoned a great deal of wisdom it once captured.
So the first thing I’d like readers to take away, is an apology on our part. We got that badly wrong. I’m sorry.
But if you’ll forgive us and allow us into the conversation, before we got all reactionary we had accumulated a lot of understanding about how human sexuality works. My hope for the book is to offer our best insights to the job before us—rebuilding healthy sex norms.
And the second thing I hope readers take away, is an understanding of what that ancient wisdom is, and how we can apply it with our young people.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
The craziness that infected religion around sex has infected religion in general—our narratives, our practices, our core instincts. I wrote a book earlier about rethinking our religious narrative: Rethinking our Story: Can We Still be Christian in the Quantum Era?
Just now I’m working on a follow-up to that book, rethinking how healthy religion works in a local setting. I’m rough-drafting it on my blog right now.
How do we rebuild in the ruins of organized religion?
How do we rethink our stories, practices, and institutional instincts?
I believe religion can once again benefit society—can help us become better people, creating a better world. The next book will be about the experience of our own community working that out over the last twenty-five years.
If history is an indicator, the blog-rough-draft process will take about a year, and then several months after that to turn it into a book.
We religious folk have to change how we teach our kids about sex. The statistics are in. What we’re doing isn’t working. In fact, our whole society must rethink sex education. Nobody’s approach is working well. Social and economic forces have forever changed the context in which our sexuality plays out. Families are whipsawed by a blistering pace of historical change. After thousands of years of gender, sex, and marriage working one way, in just a handful of decades, everything has been upended. No wonder it’s so difficult to talk to our kids. If you have a young person you love, this book can help. When religion is at its best, it accumulates and transmits the wisdom of the ages. At its worst, it devolves into rigid rules and inflexible craziness. Rethinking Sex-Education explores religion’s accumulated wisdom about human sexuality . . . and the crazy that has to be dismantled to create a healthy and helpful curriculum for our young people. Hopelessly divided, religion and society don’t talk about sex. Religion can’t imagine it’s time to rethink the old ways. Society can’t imagine religion has anything to offer. The book explores what we can learn from one another. Drawing from religion, history, biology, anthropology, and economics, Rethinking helps us think both broadly and practically. It helps grownups rethink our own sexual framework, and then imagine practical sexual conversations with our young people. It’s a book for religious people who realize the traditional approach isn’t working. It’s a book for non-religious people who realize our no-norm social norms aren’t working either.
Sex and sexuality have changed quite a bit in the last decade. It is therefore only natural that the approach to sex education be changed to fit with the times.
Dr Doug Hammack’s book, Rethinking Sex Ed, is a guide to help parents bridge the generational gap that tends to stand in the way of effective sex education. He suggests that a symbiosis between religious and societal teachings on sexuality would be most beneficial. The book details the progression of sex education and shows the reader how and when teachings ceased to be effective.
The book is well written and delivered in an even tone that seeks to inspire the reader to change their stance on their own sex education approach. The book is diplomatic, not fully supporting one approach to the detriment of another. The author acknowledges the importance of all approaches. This book only advocates for amendment of sex education to make it more palatable to the current generation. The author has a very good grasp of the material and is well versed in this subject and speaks from a point of expertise. It would therefore be safe to say that this is a reliable guide book for anyone willing to keep their mind open.
This book is very short which is wonderful, because this could be heavy material with an important message. Dr. Hammack has the ability to keep the reader well engaged and on track with the message. It takes special skills to write a book about sexuality that does not pin point and focus on a particular orientation. The basis of all love and sexuality is the same. We are all inherently the same. In that sense, this book is suitable for anyone regardless of their sexual orientation. It is not even specific to parents either.
Rethinking Sex Ed is an important book that I think is especially important in this time of so much sexual confusion. Children are growing up lacking the appropriate sexual curriculum and therefore never really attain that maturity. This is a recommended read for educators, young adults, and parents.
Pages: 186 | ASIN: B07JK5H6B5
I’m a Romance Scam IT Detective: Psychological games * Real IT Analysis * Legal matters * Gender Studies
You share your own experiences in this book, and they help clarify how someone can be scammed. What were some things you learned personally compared to what you learned through research?
I have learnt that scamming the scammer is as easy as being scammed.
I have also learnt that many people do not fall for love, but for GREED or for KINDNESS.
And you will be surprised that most educated people got romance scammed in my book – engineer, politician, IT consultant, professor, top business person … all got scammed!
In my book, I have explained a lot of psychology in this game. Well, it is pretty long. Read my book to learn more.
I enjoyed how you presented the information in an easy to understand manner. What do you hope readers take away from your book?
Most of the media has over-simplify the game. The current “signs” and “Red flag” method has a high degree of guess – it does not work for humans. Humans make judgements based on rational data and human relationships.
The revolutionary IT-evidence based method will bring the crime to an end.
In my book, I have illustrated how legal hackers trace the source in a cybercrime. This has been a black box for the general public. I hope the general public can now have a high-level idea on cybercrime forensics.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
I’m currently full time working as a cybercrime detective. There is NO next book planned.
This true story explains cybercrime investigation, hackers, romance scams, scamming a scammer and money recovery.
When financial IT consultant Selina finds herself victimized in an Internet romance scam, losing 70% of her life savings, she scams the scammer and uses new IT tools to trace the criminals …
But … why did this computer engineer fall victim in the first place, when she was not even in love with the fraudster? Will Selina be able to save the love of her life, Jason, who is believed to be in another romance scam?
This crime involves 7 countries (Australia, the United States, Singapore, Ghana, Nigeria, China, New Zealand) in 4 continents.
Operation Sustainable Human outlines four pragmatic steps that anyone can take to combat climate change. Why was this an important book for you to write?
As with all of my writing projects, the goal is somewhat simple: to help. I wanted to facilitate effective climate action. I felt that it could be made a lot easier for people and that we could be far more impactful with an optimized strategy. I loved the idea of focusing on the few areas that account for the vast majority of emissions. I also felt that there are many myths around the climate crisis that needed to be cleared up.
I appreciated the science and research used in this book. What kind of research did you undertake for this book?
I am an active scientist and so I am always reading research papers and conducting experiments. And as a lot of my research is about sustainability, I had a huge head start before I sat down to research for the book. I went back to the source papers and tried to gather as many perspectives as possible. Almost a third of the book consists of references and so those who read it are getting a solid synthesis of the current literature. That being said, I also spent a lot of time ensuring that the book was really easy to read and understand, and so, while there may be a lot of scientific research behind the book, it is accessible to anyone. in fact, one of the most common pieces of feedback is that it is really easy to read (the book only takes an hour to complete).
What is one thing that people can start doing today that will help with climate change?
If you are looking for something that has immediate effects, then switching to a plant-based diet is a great place to start. To quote the book:
“Switching to a plant-based diet has rapid, measurable, highly significant results. In a single month, you personally would have saved 600 pounds of CO2, 900 square feet of forest, 1,200 pounds of grain, and 33,000 gallons of water. Just by modifying your diet you can stop funding the leading cause of deforestation, ocean dead-zones, habitat destruction, species extinction, water pollution, methane pollution, and nitrous oxide pollution. In short, it is the single biggest way to reduce your negative impact on our planet.”
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
Right now we are working on the documentary version of the book. If anyone wants to be involved, now is the time to reach out. As for the next book, I have two that I really want to write and so I need to decide which one should go first.
Operation Sustainable Human has a refreshingly unique, no BS approach. No speculative theories. No time-wasting. Rather than bombarding the reader with a 100+ item to-do list, this short book offers four, deeply considered, pragmatic steps that account for the vast majority of the problem. Everything is backed by science, clearly referenced, and easy to read. High impact made simple.
Climate change is affecting every country in the world. It is a global problem. Therefore it is the responsibility of every human being in the world to help with the crisis. Operation Sustainable Human outlines three significant truths about climate change. The first being that human beings have caused the adverse climate change being experienced right now. This book is a simple guide to human action. It takes a step away from complicated and inefficient actions and focuses on simpler more manageable ways to impact climate change and the fight to save the planet.
Chris Macdonald has made an important observation. You usually cannot make a meaningful contribution to save the planet unless you have lots of money to donate to the cause or lots of time to dedicate to the cause. The situation on the ground is different. Even people with full time jobs and can barely make ends meet will feel a need to save the planet. This guide is for such people. The author presents a unique point of view to a complex problem.
There is a simplicity to this book that one would not expect but is very well appreciated. The author addresses the problem in simple language. The reader gets to consume material in a way that lets them understand both the message and the intensity of it. The book is also quite short making it easier to revert back to from time to time. This is ideal for a guide. You can always revisit it to see where you are on the actions suggested. The material is very well researched and has a strong basis in science.
This list is supposed to be about doable things, but some of them don’t feel this way. A good example of this is action item number 4. Changing the system has been on the forefront of things for a long time and is something easier said than done. For this particular action item, I felt that there was a lack of explanation on how it can be achieved. How would a regular individual stand up to the system and come out unscathed?
This is definitely a conversation worth having. If the word is spread wide enough then maybe action number 4 will not seem so daunting. If enough people see how complex the problem is and what the impact could be, they will start to understand that only humans hold the solution to the problem. This is a powerful book that is relevant book and essential. The more people read this, the better.
Pages: 77 | ASIN: B07XWVGPDQ
I have heard the saying that it takes a village to raise a child. That is true for all the parents and teachers, coaches, friends, families and anyone who have the pleasure and responsibilities of inspiring our children. This book came as an inspiration and reflection of the important attributes that helps to shape our children. It is about all of our SHEROES and HEROES. Studies have shown that the happiest, most successful children are those who can appreciate the differences and the opportunities and learnings that is experienced everyday. I have taught my two daughters that it is important to start from a place of gratitude. My hope is that this book will be a discussion for parents and teachers and anyone who wants to inspire important life attributes in a child’s life. There is an opportunity to choose one the attributes each month and celebrate it, discuss, reflect and have a conversation without any judgement to build understanding and awareness.
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