See below for further reading and advanced hellraising on the articles in this issue:
Malidoma Some by D. Patrick Miller
- Part storyteller and part student, Michael Meade takes a rare common sense approach to the men's movement in Men and the Water of Life (California: Harper San Francisco, 1993), looking at initiation, mythology, and symbolism from a contemporary, down-to-earth point of view.
- More of a polemic than a history lesson, Ali Mazrui's The Africans (Massachusetts: Little, Brown and Company, 1986) goes beyond finger-pointing to consider how colonialized Africa's "triple heritage"--native traditions, Islamic culture, and Western influence--can be resynthesized. It's actually a companion volume to the PBS series of the same title; call (800) LEARNER.
Medscam by L.J. Davis
- More unsettling anecdotes are detailed in Prescription for Profit by Paul Jesilow, Henry N. Pontell, and Gilbert Geis (California: University of California Press, 1993): A woman billed for an abortion after she'd already had a hysterectomy; a gynecologist who charged for the circumcision of a female baby; a physician who billed Medicaid for treating a 22-year-old for diaper rash.. . .
- Less compelling but infinitely useful, 10,289 Questionable Doctors Disciplined by States or the Federal Government (Washington, D.C.: Public Citizen Health Research Group, 1993) is a periodic encyclopedic listing of physicians taken to task for everything from falsifying records to misprescribing drugs. (Available in volumes for each state.)
- If you think you're a victim of any kind of health care fraud--and that includes being billed for unnecessary services or being treated by an unlicensed physician--ask your state licensing board to look into your complaint.
Mixed Paint by Louis Menand
- Is there room for cultural identity in the institutions of liberalism? That's the question behind Charles Taylor's essay, "Examining the Politics of Recognition," the centerpiece of Multiculturalism (New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1994), a collection of related essays and commentary.
- A remarkable navigation between right and left, Russell Jacoby's Dogmatic Wisdom (New York: Doubleday, 1994) aims to prove that wars over multiculturalism--perhaps only a "station en route to monoculturalism"--are distracting us from the real problems with American education and society.
The Fourth Wave by Mark Dowie
- Rachel's Environment & Health Weekly is a one-page, global digest full of facts and (though unequivocally leftist) thankfully short on editorializing. Its key organizing tool: The newsletter isn't copyrighted, to encourage reprinting. Call the Environmental Research Foundation at (410) 263-1584 for subscription information.
- Journalist Charles Piller used his own apparent distrust for community organizing as a springboard for The Fail-Safe Society: Community Defiance and the End of American Technological Optimism (New York: BasicBooks, 1991), a sometimes frustratingly cautious but meticulously documented look at NIMBYism's past and future.
- Arm yourself against the case for market-based environmentalism. You probably won't buy into the argument in Bruce Piasecki and Peter Asmus' In Search of Environmental Excellence (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1990)--it's one that assumes environmentalism can be bought--but it's a strong reminder of what grassroots activists are up against.
- Susan D. Lanier-Graham outlines the history and focus of U.S. environmental groups, ranging from the familiar to the more "specialized" (the Ruffed Grouse Society, for one) in The Nature Directory (New York: Walker Publishing, 1991).
- Donating profits to Beltway enviro-groups is becoming a dubious venture for socially conscious musicians, so we suggest they put their mouth where their money is and offer lyrical pleas for grassroots action. Some already do: Among them, Indigo Girls' Nomads Indians Saints (Epic, 1990), Midnight Oil's Earth and Sun and Moon (Columbia, 1993), and Sweet Honey In The Rock's In This Land (EarthBeat!, 1992).
The Bomb Tribe by David Beers
- Striking a brilliant balance between literature and journalism, The Making of the Atomic Bomb (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1986) is Richard Rhodes' definitive, Pulitzer Prize-winning look at the nuclear tribe.
- Debra Rosenthal interviewed dozens of scientists, engineers, and technicians (and watched home movies of the nuclear drop on Hiroshima with one) while researching At the Heart of the Bomb (Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1990). Her book examines the sometimes ambivalent humans who keep the bomb-making industry alive.
- An umbrella for a legion of anti-nuke groups, the Military Production Network has produced a pair of civilian-friendly information guides on nuclear disarmament. For details, write the group at 1914 North 34th St., Suite 407, Seattle, WA 98103.
- Activists are already developing a blueprint to convert Lawrence Livermore Laboratory from a den of nuclear weaponry to a center for civilian research. For a copy of their working papers--plus Lies of the Lab, an anti-nuclear P.R. factsheet, and Citizen's Watch, a monthly newsletter--send a donation to Tri-Valley CAREs (Citizens Against a Radioactive Environment) at 5720 East Ave., Suite 116, Livermore, CA 94550.
- Some of the 78 titles produced by EnviroVideo (whose motto is "TOO HOT FOR TV!") deal with a meltdown of a different sort: One impassioned video features model hellraiser Dr. Helen Caldicott calling for an end to the nuclear industry. Call (800) ECO-TV46 for a free catalog.