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Face-to-Face: A Natural and Cultural History of the Human Form

Excerpted from Adam's Navel; A Natural and Cultural History of the Human Form By Michael Sims Our bestial hair surrounds a lace that is equally animalian. Like other creatures' faces, ours is a busy area crowded with sophisticated information-gathering devices. There are twin instruments for the detection of visible electromagnetic radiation, two likewise paired for gathering sound waves, one (with two apertures) for analyzing particles floating in the air, and one for

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Red Blood/White Milk - How Women's Sexuality Shaped Human Evolution

Excerpted from Sex, Time, and Power: How Women's Sexuality Shaped Human Evolution By Leonard Shlain, M.D. In Genesis, the Serpent, a reptile, hisses into Eve's ear how she might acquire self-awareness and escape from her reptilian brain. She, not Adam, takes the first bite of the forbidden fruit, and it is she who then teaches him what he must do to acquire the Great Gift. The heavy price Eve subsequently paid to possess this knowledge was the grave sentence God leveled

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American Dream - The Crossroads: Chicago

Excerpted from American Dream: Three Women, Ten Kids, and a Nation's Drive to End Welfare By Jason DeParle Much as Hattie Mae had feared, Chicago proved a "big raggedy place that you could get lost in," and countless people did. In the three decades before she arrived, Chicago's black population grew by eight hundred thousand. A city-within-a-city sprang up in its midst, and while it fostered a proud black middle class it also bred a destructive new street life, spreadi

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Television - Everything Bad Is Good for You

Excerpted from Everything Bad Is Good for You: How Today's Popular Culture Is Actually Making Us Smarter By Steven Johnson The interactive nature of games means that they will inevitably require more decision-making than passive forms like television or film. But popular television shows-and to a slightly lesser extent, popular films-have also increased the cognitive work they demand from their audience, exercising the mind in ways that would have been unheard of thirty

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From The Bachelorette to The Bachelor

Excerpted from What a Difference a Year Makes: How Life's Unexpected Setbacks Can Lead to Unexpected Joy By Bob Guiney When I first got the offer to write this book, I didn't know I was going to be the main man of the next The Bachelor. Actually, when the producers called me and told me ABC wanted me to be the next bachelor, I just laughed and said, "I don't think so." They didn't think it was funny. "Why aren't you jumping up and down with exci

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Heirs and Force: The Tenets of Passing the Torch

Excerpted from What Would Jackie Do? An Inspired Guide to Distinctive Living By Shelly Branch, Sue Callaway If you've chosen to have children, you're probably hip to Jackie's number-one goal when it came to raising Caroline and John Jr.: She wanted them to be little APs-Admirable People. And from a young age, they were-despite a tragedy bigger than any youngster should have to bear and the world's endless scrutiny. The classic images of Jackie and her young offspring ca

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Self-Promotion: Writing a Right-Brain Marketing Plan

Excerpted from Self-Promotion for the Creative Person: Get the Word Out About Who You Are and What You Do By Lee Silber Define and Refine You don't want to be running around in circles without a clue about who your target is. Knowing who needs what is a key to success. A niche is a specific area that you specialize in. One man creates golf-related art and sells it through pro shops, country clubs, and ads in golf magazines and newsletters. This

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What Black Love Is . . .

Excerpted from Keeping the Faith: Stories of Love, Courage, Healing, and Hope from Black America By Tavis Smiley My Baby Brother On January 23, 1970, my baby brother, George, was born. He had cocoa skin, full lips, beautiful brown eyes, and a head full of gorgeous silky Black hair George looked perfect on the outside, but he was born with a defective heart. My parents were crushed. But they were determined that they woul

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Your Brain Is Much Better Than You Think

Excerpted from How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci By Michael J. Gelb Although it is hard to overstate Leonardo da Vinci's brilliance, recent scientific research reveals that you probably underestimate your own capabilities. You are gifted with virtually unlimited potential for learning and creativity. Ninety-five percent of what we know about the capabilities of the human brain has been learned in the last twenty years. Our schools, universities, and corporations are o

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What Do You Really Want In Life?

Excerpted from The Hoffman Process By Tim Laurence YOU CAN USE the tool of awareness in many ways. In the last chapter we used awareness to shed light on what we wanted to change in our lives. Another great use of awareness is to consider how would we like our lives actually to be and how we would like to be in them. Then we get even more motivated to go beyond the known and comfortable. We often know what we don't want in life and long to be rid of what makes us misera

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Da Vinci Decoded

Excerpted from Da Vinci Decoded: : Discovering the Spiritual Secrets of Leonardo's Seven Principles By Michael J. Gelb Perhaps you saw the episode of Star Trek: Voyager in 1997 when Leonardo da Vinci debuted as the holographic adviser to the captain. Leonardo's sage advice was instrumental in guiding the ship and crew to fulfill their highest purpose, to boldly go where they'd never been before. In the following pages, I'm hoping that you'll discover Leonardo as your pe

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Neatness - Corps Values

Excerpted from Corps Values: Everything You Need to Know I Learned In the Marines By Zell Miller Neat is a much-used word in the lexicon of contemporary youth, but its meaning and varying nuances have little relation to the not-so-subtle definition branded upon every aspect of the lives, conscious thoughts, and unconscious motivations of every recruit by the Marine Corps. To many youth of today, being "neat" and doing "neat" things means either

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The Unexamined Life Is Not Worth Living

Excerpted from Character Is Destiny: The Value of Personal Ethics in Everyday Life By Russell W. Gough, Ph.D. For, the title of this chapter, I quote an immortal sentiment expressed by one of the most well known and revered of all philosophers. Socrates made provocative remarks like this famous one as part of his daily practice in Athens in the late fourth century B.C. (several years after Heraclitus' death). When he made these statements, he wa

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Living Well by Doing Good

Excerpted from The Power of Purpose: Living Well by Doing Good By Peter S. Temes, Ph.D Michael Jordan was once asked to lend his image to an inspirational poster for school children. A well-motivated school publishing outfit wanted to put posters of Jordan in thousands of classrooms to inspire kids. Jordan was at the height of his playing career, and the publishers thought the image of his success would be a great inspiration to children struggling with their own challe

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What Is Your Compelling Purpose for Organizing?

Excerpted from It's Hard to Make a Difference When You Can't Find Your Keys : The Seven-Step Path to Becoming Truly Organized By Marilyn Paul, Ph.D. Recently, Melissa, one of my clients, told me, "I don't like being disorganized. I waste a lot of time looking for things. I hate the way my apartment looks. I miss appointments because I forget to write things down. I'm looking for an exciting, responsible job, and I know I need to change. But when I have free time, I don'

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How Religion Enhances Longevity: Is It the Meaning?

Excerpted from Emotional Longevity; What Really Determines How Long You Live By Norman B. Anderson, Ph.D., P. Elizabeth Anderson Andrew J. Young, a top aide of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during the civil rights movement, is himself an ordained minister. He also served three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, was ambassador to the United Nations under President Carter, served two terms as mayor of Atlanta, and cochaired the Centennial Olympic Games

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The Seductress Archetype

Excerpted from Seductress: Women Who Ravished the World and Their Lost Art of Love By Betsy Prioleau, Ph.D. The seductress hadn't existed, she would have been imagined. Since the Ice Age men and women have envisioned goddesses of sexuality and worshiped them. These were no bloodless Madonnas with eyes cast heavenward, but creatures of flesh and appetite, adored for their erotic power. Their sacred insignia was the pubic triangle, like the cross in Christianity. Charity,

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Us and Them; Understanding Your Tribal Mind

Excerpted from Us and Them; Understanding Your Tribal Mind By David Berreby In the spring of 2004, the Republican Party of Illinois found itself with a problem. Its nominee in the upcoming election for the U.S. Senate, Jack Ryan, had been severely embarrassed by revelations about his sexual tastes contained in five-year-old divorce papers. It was bad news for a party that had already been tarnished by corruption charges two years earlier against the state's Republican g

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Health & Fitness - Gynecologist

Excerpted from A Virgin's Guide to Everything : From Sushi to Sample Sales--A Novice's Handbook to Doing It Right By Lauren McCutcheon We admit it: We're addicted to Self magazine. Month after month, cover to cover, reading each issue feels like eating a salad, taking a brisk walk, and having a heart-to-heart. Every thirty days, we get a new chance at our New Year's resolution-and if we break it, a new edition's on its way in a few weeks. It's p

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Navigating Your Way Through Difficult Times

Excerpted from Tough Transitions; Navigating Your Way Through Difficult Times By Elizabeth Harper Neeld, Ph.D. My dictionary tells me that to transit is to pass over, across, or through. I read into this definition that there is some kind of barrier present, maybe a high granite mountain to climb over, a rushing river to lord. Or at least a distance to travel where you are neither at the place you left nor the place you are going to. And when my

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Negotiations - The Titanic Principle

Excerpted from Negotiate This! : By Caring, But Not T-H-A-T Much By Herb Cohen Until now, we have seen illustrations of how what people think they want are not what they ultimately settle for. One of the biggest mistakes that we make is to believe that the initial demand of the contending party correlates with their true interest. Perhaps that is why when people sometimes get what they asked for, they're still not happy. George Bernard Shaw in Man and Superman recognize

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Race Integration: Blacks and Whites in America

Excerpted from A Country of Strangers: Blacks and Whites in America By David K. Shipler Many African-Americans describe "black culture" with definitions of contrast: black is better than white in one or another dimension, such as the inventiveness of humor, the closeness of family, the honesty of friendship, the spontaneity of feeling, the dignity of struggle, the sexuality of love, the rootedness in reality and the suffering of the street. The

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Work Doesn't Work - The Working Poor

Excerpted from The Working Poor: Invisible in America By David K. Shipler Christie did a job that this labor-hungry economy could not do without. Every morning she drove her battered '86 Volkswagen from her apartment in public housing to the YWCAs child-care center in Akron, Ohio, where she spent the day watching over little children so their parents could go to work. Without her and thousands like her across the country, there would have been fewer people able to fill

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Reconnecting: How Your Essential Self Says 'No'

Excerpted from Finding Your Own North Star: Claiming the Life You Were Meant to Live By Martha Beck, Ph.D. Anne's job search was not going well. When I met her, she'd just blown big corporate interviews, not with one company but with several. It was same thing every time: Anne would go into the interview process smiling and gracious, like a Miss America contestant, and pass the first screening with flying colors. As she moved on to the next round of interviews, Anne wou

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How First Impressions Are Formed

Excerpted from First Impressions: What You Don't Know About How Others See You By Ann Demarais, Ph.D., Valerie White, Ph.D. Imagine you are sitting at a bar with your best friend, who is about your age, similarly attractive, and intelligent. You both strike up a conversation with the bartender. You're all laughing and having a good time. But as the conversation goes on you realize the bartender is paying much more attention to your friend than to you. You feel hurt, and

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