Category Archives: books

Building Accessible Websites – Joe Clark

Building Accessible Websites

Building Accessible Websites – link to amazon

Place Published:   Indianapolis, Ind.
ISBN:   073571150x
Keywords:   Web sites – Design
Format:   Paperback
Authors:   Joe Clark
Publication Date:   c2003.

If fear of lawsuits, government mandates, and human-rights complaints is driving you to make your website more accessible, you’re doing the right thing for the wrong reason. Aks yourself if it makes good business sense to ignore a substantial portion of your potential audience. Why turn away visitors who may be blind, deaf, or otherwise disabled?

Building Accessible Websites teaches how and why to use web accessibility techniques, with an emphasis on phased accessibility that scales to the needs of small, medium and large budgets. Whether you’re an individual developer running a hobby site or the head of a large corporate web team, Building Accessible Websites shows you affordable, technically manageable ways to make a website accessible to people with disabilities

Not only has Joe Clark written the best book i’ve read on accessibility, he’s made it available for free online

but you should still buy it.

george grant – lament for a nation

george grant - lament for a nation

Lament for a Nation: The Defeat of Canadian Nationalism

author: George Grant

publisher: Carleton Univ Press

place published Ottawa

ISBN: 0-88629-257-3

keywords: Nationalism – Canada Canada – Politics and government – 20th century Diefenbaker, John G. (John George), 1895-1979 United States – Relations – Canada

page count: 111

“In a society of large bureaucracies, power is legitimized by conscious and unconscious processess” – page 57

i’m not often fond of political rhetoric, but i am quite taken with George Grant. i was drawn to this book as i have respect for the ideals and ideals of the man, and wanted to discover what caused his sadness for our nation. this book was published in 1965 and i found it to be a difficult read as many of the intensely reinforced political examples were from the period of 1960-1965 – not one i remember well.

one of the striking features of this book was not just the title, but the subtitle – “the defeat of canadian nationalism” – that caught my interest. in reading this book i wanted to discover what grant considered to be “canadian nationalism” that was lost. i wanted to glean an understanding of a historical nationalism and consider it in modern canada.

many of the themes in the book ring true today; the east/west power conflict, decisions based on trade relations rather than national self-interest, and the ever present and shaping will of america. the basic premise of the book is that as our economy is further entwined with america we become inextricably linked to the cultural and social demands of that nation. there is only so much room on the plate for national adgenda, and every large and small decision that ties our economic fate to america means less room for canadian culture.

there is a possibility of interacting with america in a manner that is beneficial and constructive for our culture and our economy, but that would mean our neighbours to the south would have to work at the relationship of our two countries. there is no advantage of interest for them to do so. logic would argue that decisions in the best interest of our national culture would be the easy to make, but america is the most powerful nation in the world, and aligning our economy with that powerful machine drives a lot of the policy making in our country.

“This was Mackenzie King’s chief political achievement. The organization of the war and postwar reconstruction was carried on within the assumption that government action never questioned the ultimate authority of business interests to run the economy.” – page 61

grant writes that decisions made in the favour of large business are often in opposition to the health of canadian nationalism. i found this particularly disheartening in light of our current social climate, and our current prime minister – a liberal ex-finance minister.

having read through the book, i can clearly see how we could make canada stronger. however, i can see that it’s unlikely to occur with the government currently in power. as our country aligns further and further with our neighbour neighbor to the south, i’m beginning to understand that many of these decisions were made 40 or 50 years ago.

Where We Stand: Class Matters

First Line: “Everywhere we turn in our daily lives in this nation we are confronted with the widening gap between rich and poor.”
Where we stand - bell hooks

Author(s): Bell Hooks

ISBN: 0-415-92913-x

Publisher: Routledge

Original Price: $16.95

Rating: 8 of 10

This incisive examination of class is rooted in cultural critic hooks’s (All About Love) personal experience, political commitment, and social theory, which links gender, race, and class. Starting with her working-class childhood, the author illustrates how everyday interactions reproduce class hierarchy while simultaneously denying its existence. Because she sustains an unflinching gaze on both her own personal motivations and on persistent social structures, hooks provides a valuable framework for discussing such difficult and unexplored areas as greed, the quest to live simply, the ruling-class co-optation of youth through popular culture, and real estate speculation as an instrument of racism. Although the reading level and the price are both steep, this title is highly recommended for most public libraries and academic social science collections.
DPaula R. Dempsey, DePaul Univ. Lib., Chicago
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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philedelphia fire

philedelphia fire

Author(s): John Edgar Wideman

Description: When African-American writer Cudjoe returns to his hometown of Philadelphia to write a book about the 1985 police firebombing of a black cult, his homecoming spurs within him a myriad of memories and impressions. While recalling the abandonment of his white wife and two children, his failed novel and a dead mentor, he provides rich observation about the about the crumbling state of a once-beloved city. As his research unfolds, he examines issues of sex, race and the life of the city, ultimately uncovering information that sets the entire city into motion. Philadelphia Fire won the PEN/Faulkner Award for 1991.

ISBN: 0-679-73650-6

Genre: African Americans

Publisher: Vintage Books USA

Original Price: $12.00

Rating: 8 of 10

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war with the newts

War with the newts

Author(s): Karel Capek

Description: The visionary Czech writer Karel Capek (1890-1938), one of the century’s great authors, first gained fame during the 1920s and 1930s when his short stories, novels, satires, journalism, children’s books, and plays made him the most important writer in his native country. War With the Newts, one of the great dystopian satires of the century, is about the discovery by a Dutch sea-captain of a race of giant, intelligent, talking, and walking newts. When humans begin to exploit the newts as slaves, the creatures organize to fight the oppression, taking up arms and challenging the humans for control of newt destiny and freedom.

This novel came very close to winning the nobel prize for literature when it was released, however, the incendiary subject matter of the book prevented it from garnering the prize.

ISBN: 0-945774-10-9

Genre: Action

Publisher: Catbird Press

Original Price: $11.95

Rating: 7 of 10

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quarrel & quandary: essays by cynthia ozick

quarrel and quandry: Essays

Description: “True essayists,” declares Cynthia Ozick, “rarely write novels.” This pronouncement would seem to overlook a horde of ambidextrous types, from John Updike to Gore Vidal to Charles Baxter to Joyce Carol Oates – and, of course, Ozick herself. The author of three novels, she is also among our finest essayists, combining a Jamesian nose for moral nuance with some of the most playful and pugnacious prose in contemporary letters. And her fourth collection, Quarrel & Quandary, contains some of her very best work. There are ardent considerations of particular authors, including W.G. Sebald, Franz Kafka, and Swedish modern Goran Tunstrom. But this time around, the author is even more intent on exploring the rhetorical minefield where art and politics overlap. Her introduction, in fact, is one long riff on the importance of being earnestly engagé, at the end of which Ozick manages to have her cake and eat it too: “Two cheers, then – when there is no choice – for being engagé; but three cheers and more for that other bravery, the literary essay, and for memory’s mooning and maundering, and for losing one’s way in the bliss of American prose….”

In three provocative pieces (“The Rights of History and the Rights of the Imagination,” “The Posthumous Sublime,” and “Who Owns Anne Frank?”), Ozick suggests that the Holocaust is almost – but not quite – impervious to literature. She’s particularly angered by the morphing of Frank’s diary into a mother lode of Broadway-style uplift, a transformation that “tampers with history, with reality, with deadly truth.” Elsewhere, though, Ozick is less polemical, more willing to be dazzled by Roethke’s radiance or Henry James’s epistemological high beams. And it’s not only specific artists but entire genres that win her awed and eloquent approval:

When we say that poetry is strange, we mean not that it is less than intelligible, but exactly the opposite: poetry is intelligibility heightened, strengthened, distilled to the point of astounding us; and also made manifold. Metaphor is intelligibility’s great imperative, its engine of radical amazement.

At its best, Ozick’s prose is equally, radically amazing. She may not always compel our agreement – the scolding she administers to W.G. Sebald, whom she clearly admires, is something of a puzzler – but her voice never ceases to register distinction and detail, emitting what she calls “the hum of perpetual noticing.” Five cheers, then, for Quarrel & Quandary. And by the way, might Mooning & Maundering be a candidate for the author’s next alliterative title? – James Marcus

ISBN: 0375410619

Genre: Essays

Edition: Hardcover

Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf

Original Price: $25.00

Rating: 7 of 10

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jimmy corrigan: the smartest kid on earth by chris ware

The morose and beautiful are subject matter for Chris Ware’s comic books. This book would be tremendous for children if was not full of depression, self-loathing and the sort of existential questioning that would make Kirkengaard feel blue.

Jimmy Corrigan, smartest kid on earth

Author(s): Chris Ware

ISBN: 0375714545

Genre: Comics

Edition: Paperback

Publisher: Pantheon Books

Original Price: $17.95

Rating: 8 of 10

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Jimmy Corrigan, smartest kid on earth

Jimmy Corrigan, smartest kid on earth