Pirkei Avot, which is most commonly translated as "Chapters of the Fathers," is one of the most important collections of ethical teachings in the tradition of Judaism. Believed to have been compiled in the period between 200 B.C. and 200 A.C., this compendium of ancient wisdom remains just as relevant and inspirational thousands of years later.
Heart of Darkness is Joseph Conrad's disturbing novella recounted by the itinerant captain Marlow sent to find and bring home the shadowy and inscrutable Captain Kurtz. Marlow and his men follow a river deep into a jungle, the "Heart of Darkness" of Africa looking for Kurtz, an unhinged leader of an isolated trading station. This highly symbolic psychological drama was the founding myth for Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 movie Apocalypse Now.
Between overseeing his private practice and developing an entirely new field of research and inquiry that would profoundly influence Western culture, Austrian psychiatrist Sigmund Freud somehow came across and helped to publish the diary of an anonymous young girl of the European upper classes. The detailed journal follows the young authoress from the age of 11 to the age of 14 1/2, through high school, schoolyard crushes, and the tumult of adolescence.
If you can't get enough of action-adventure stories of pioneer life in the American West, dive into this tale from Bret Harte, one of the most renowned documenters of the era. In A Waif of the Plains, Harte recounts the story of an orphan traveling the Oregon Trail in the 1850s.
A well-to-do doctor wakes up to find himself on a ship at sea. How did he get there, and how will he get home? But before those questions can be answered, the crew begins to succumb to a mysterious illness, one by one -- and questions about the doctor's true identity are never settled.
Is it possible to love a person so much that you refuse to remain together with him or her -- because you know that your union is destined to bring unhappiness? Is this choice selfless or selfish? That's the philosophical question at the heart of this rather dark romance from Anne Douglas Sedgwick. Despite sharing a passionate affinity that has persisted for decades, a couple's chance at lasting togetherness is dashed because one partner is fearful that he is not worthy of the love he has been given.
American editor and writer John Kendrick Bangs eased into humor writing and satire by anonymously submitting a few essays for publication amidst his busy career at a number of prominent publications. One of his most lasting creations is an opinionated buffoon called the Idiot. In this amusing collection, the Idiot holds forth on a number of his pet subjects, ranging from marriage to literary criticism.
One of the most remarkable characteristics of the U.S. Constitution is its mutability. The procedure for amending the Constitution ensures that it will always be a living document that reflects the evolving concerns of the American populace over time. Indeed, soon after the Constitution was ratified, it began to be amended. The first ten amendments, which are collectively referred to as the Bill of Rights, are presented in this document.
The searing indictment of man-made inequality in all its many forms that Rousseau offers in Discourse on Inequality is a must-read for philosophy buffs and supporters of social justice. This artfully composed argument sets forth the core elements of Rousseau's philosophical views, including his unique take on Hobbes' concept of nature and natural law.