Lifelong Dewey

Reading through every Dewey Decimal section.

Month: July, 2013

234: One With Christ by Marcus P. Johnson

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234: Johnson, Marcus Peter. One with Christ: An Evangelical Theology of Salvation. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2013. 240 pp. ISBN 978-1-4335-3149-1.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 200: Religion
  • 230: Christianity and Christian theology
  • 234: Salvation, soteriology, and grace

Marcus Johnson’s One with Christ is a philosophical text on how the life, deeds, works, and belief in Jesus Christ the Savior intermingle with the believer’s salvation. Soteriology—a subject completely new to me before this—is the study of salvation in a religious context. Johnson’s discussions of salvation exist in the Calvinist tradition and deals with the manner in which the Christian is spiritually joined with the Christ. This is not a easy or fun book to get through, but the author’s arguments offer a new perspective on an old dilemma. Johnson discusses the nuances of transubstantiation, the sacraments, church mysteries, and theology all under the context of personal salvation. It’s a religious philosophy book, so it’s a bit dense. The prose is scholarly but not overly righteous. I don’t see this one having a lot of mainstream popularity, but those looking for a deeper understanding of salvation and sin can give it a go. It will definitely get you thinking.

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688: LEGO by Jonathan Bender

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688.725: Bender, Jonathan. LEGO: A Love Story. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2010. 262 pp. ISBN 978-0-470-40702-8.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 600: Technology
  • 680: Manufacture of products for specific use
  • 688: Other final products and packaging technology
  • 688.7: Recreational equipment
  • 688.72: Toys
  • 688.725: Educational toys

Like most kids in the US, I had LEGO bricks. I would spend whole weekends designing elaborate houses and scenes, just to tear it down and start again. Jonathan Bender’s LEGO: A Love Story captures the same energy and glee that children first have when playing with LEGO. His re-introduction to the world of toy brickwork follows the same pattern of most current-day AFOLs (adult fans of LEGO), with the discovery of a long-forgotten bin of bricks. You can’t help but play with them once found. Most adults who build with LEGO bricks have a period when they’ve put them away but never got rid of them. Now, with wholesalers of individual pieces, collector’s sets, and conventions devoted to LEGO products, the company has made an interesting resurgence.

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659: Adland by Mark Tungate

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659.109: Tungate, Mark. Adland: A Global History of Advertising. London: Kogan Page, 2013. 252 pp. ISBN 978-0-7494-6431-8.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 600: Technology
  • 650: Management and auxiliary services
  • 659: Advertising and public relation
  • 659.1: Advertising
  • +09: General history

No matter where you look—unless you live in a cabin in the woods without newspaper delivery, television service, or the Internet—you will find some form of advertising. Ever since the first person decided to sell one thing to another person, manufacturers have sought the best avenues for getting the word out about their product. The first print advertisement appeared in 1849 (for service that more accurately measures one’s head for hat-fitting purposes, of all things) and from there, everything snowballed. Mark Tungate’s Adland is a mesmerizing look at the history of advertising from the first major British agencies to the influences of Eastern advertisers to today’s Internet pioneers.

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956: Contested Land, Contested Memory by Jo Roberts

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956.04: Roberts, Jo. Contested Land, Contested Memory: Israel’s Jews and Arabs and the Ghosts of Catastrophe. Toronto: Dundurn, 2013. 264 pp. ISBN 978-1-4597-1011-5.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 900: History and geography
  • 950: History of Asia
  • 956: History of the Middle East and the Near East
  • 956.04: 1945-1980

Palestinians call it the “Nakba,” the catastrophe; to Israelis, it is the Day of Independence—the day that three-quarters of a million Palestinians were uprooted from their homes to make way for a mandated state of Israel. The Jewish population, who had been repeatedly kicked out every safe place in history, were given a land, a government, and a voice. Jo Roberts’s Contested Land, Contested Memory is an intricate look over the perilous decades that followed the creation of Israel using both regular historical documents as well as personal interviews and local reporting.

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039: Too Much to Know by Ann M. Blair

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039.71094: Blair, Ann M. Too Much to Know: Managing Scholarly Information Before the Modern Age. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2010. 366 pp. ISBN 978-0-300-11251-1.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 000: Computer science, information, and general works
  • 030: Encyclopedias and books of facts
  • 039: General encyclopedic works in other languages
  • 039.71: General encyclopedia works in Latin
  • +094: Europe

Today, the world doesn’t think too much on how information is stored for the future. We have encyclopedias and web depositories and information on every smartphone around the world for those who need info on a moment’s notice. A thousand year ago, getting and storing information was a much different task. Manuscript after manuscript had to be consulted, minute information gleaned from faraway sources to create each new volume. While it’s generally agreed upon that there were more books around than previously thought, information was still a rare thing. In the two centuries before the invention of the printing press, there was a interesting rush of activity in trying to pull together the world’s knowledge into a single source. Ann Blair’s Too Much to Know brings to light many of the historical efforts to manage information before the invention of the Internet.

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657: More Than a Numbers Game by Thomas A. King

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657.0973: King, Thomas A. More Than a Numbers Game: A Brief History of Accounting. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2006. 211 pp. ISBN 0-470-00873-3.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 600: Technology
  • 650: Management and auxiliary services
  • 657: Accounting
  • +0973: United States

You would be hard pressed to come up with a more soporific subject than that of accounting. Through no real fault of their own accountants are seen as the mousy, super-introverts of the world, subject to all kinds of negative portrayals in books and film. The truth is, nowadays, accountants keep the world afloat. World markets are propped up or deflated through the work of accounting. Investors, both big and small, need the work of accountants to decide where their money will go. Accounting in the U.S. specifically has had quite a storied past and Thomas King’s More Than a Numbers Game seeks to warm more people up to the field.

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178: The Complete Book of Greed by M. Hirsch Goldberg

 

DDC_178178: Goldberg, M. Hirsch. The Complete Book of Greed: The Strange and Amazing History of Human Excess. New York: William Morrow & Co., 1994. 236 pp. ISBN 0-6881-0614-5.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 100: Philosophy and psychology
  • 170: Ethics
  • 178: Ethics of consumption

It seems like greed is an undeniable quality of being human. Many of us can temper greed with other moral niceties, but the talented few let their greed run unabated. Many Americans can probably rattle off a dozen noted millionaires and billionaires before they can name the presidents (although, sometimes, they are the same people). The Rockefellers, Carnegies, and Gateses of the world are known by their wealth, business acumen, and sometimes their philanthropy. M. Hirsch Goldberg’s The Complete Book of Greed is a whimsical look at the history of human monetary greediness and how it has shaped—and been shaped by—history.

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