This week, ACET staff were invited to talk about what they’re currently reading, off or online, for work or for pleasure. Feel free to add to our discussion with your own readings in the comments below!
“I began reading Mother Nature: Maternal Instincts and How They Shape the Human Species by Sarah Blaffer Hrdy with the hope it would lend a new perspective to my master’s project. Hrdy examines topics like gender roles, maternal ambition, reproductive rights, child care, and parenting, citing her own experiences as a primatologist and mother as well as others’ research in the fields of psychology, anthropology, sociology, and biology. Mother Nature takes a long, hard look at society’s view of motherhood and maternal instincts, as well as how primate mothers juggle their own needs, desires, health, and ambition with the demands of successfully raising offspring; despite its long list of references, it is an enlightening, engaging, easy to follow text.”
“Kurt Vonnegut’s The Sirens of Titan. My first KV book (surprisingly, given my tastes) and it is very strange and equally interesting so far. Vonnegut is known for his science fiction with a twist on human social commentary and Sirens of Titan has not disappointed in either category.”
“I’m currently reading Seeds of Change: Six Plants That Transformed Mankind by Henry Hobhouse. His position is that people didn’t change the world, plants did. So he’s talking about this history, and importance, of what he sees as the five most important plants to world history – quinine, sugar, tea, cotton, and potatoes.”
“Lately I’ve been reading up on information from ADARA (formerly known as the American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association). ADARA is a professional organization that works to improve the lives of deaf and hard of hearing people in the United States. In preparation for their Minneapolis conference in May 2013, I’ve recently become engrossed with their newsletters discussing what’s new and innovative in the field.”
“I am currently working on Volume 4 of The Drops of God by Tadashi Agi (actually the pen name of a brother-and-sister writing team). The Drops of God is a manga (Japanese comics) series about the prodigal son of a famous wine critic who must enter into a wine-tasting contest in order to secure his father’s estate from his adopted brother, a wine critic eager to avail himself of the estate’s massive, expensive wine collection. This volume continues in the educational and sentimental tones of the first three, which have had an interesting impact on the actual world of wine.”