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Ght of some of the topics discussed Overall I would give this collection of ssays a 455 and I look forward to joining Cook on other forays into society A talisman has appeared in twenty first century America one with astounding magical powers Fitting in the palm like a mini crystal ball it can bring people to life on its screen To young kids submerged in the dreamy developmental phase of childhood this glass amulet must seem utterly bewitching and miraculous a veritable Wonderland of miniature toy stores and colorful games With parent s permission it The McKettrick Way (McKettricks, even sends real toys and snacks to one s homeEver open up a book and become immediatelynraptured with it to the point where you find yourself reading it at a time you were not planning to read it Such was the case with this collection of Midsummer Masque essays I started reading the above passage from the book s firstssay Maybe This Time (Belonging entitled An American Talisman and found myself immediately hooked I have often wondered what an outside observer would think about our fascination with our smart phones so thisssay really spoke to me But besides waxing on about a subjects that we are already familiar with and have given thought to the mark of a great Effetto domino essay collection is to introduce foreign concepts and ideas Thisssay collection did a very good job at that Don t let the title fool you these The Midwifes Miracle Baby essays are not all about Americana or necessarily have anything to do with the US There is anssay about Japanese mixed bathing springs one about English chamber music and a Van Gogh piece There are also universal topics discussed such as atheism breasts and monogamy It was a uite an interesting kebab The works of Isham Cook will be familiar to regular readers of my blog Isham by his own account appears to be an American former academic now based in China whose range of interests cover Mendozas Miracle everything from massage coffee and the old canal system of Beijing I described his collection of short stories The Exact Unknown as a voice outside the stereotypes and one of the rare works on China written with such truth wit and honesty After reading his short stories I went on to read his other works that I also reviewed for the viewing public My favourite remains At The Teahouse Cafe a wonderful collection of thoughts and ruminations on all things China with an insight that could only come from somebody who has been in the country for over two decades Massage and the Writer took the same idea of having a compilation of relatedssays but took the theme of massage rather than China Again I found it to be insightful thought provoking and smoothly written Finally I found Isham s The Millionaires Mistress Bundle experimental novel Lust and Philosophy to be challenging and intellectually stimulating though I appear to be in the minority in that view Other reviews on described it as rape literature with one reviewer Lloyd Lofthouseven claiming it is obvious that Isham is mentally damaged So it was with great anticipation that I cracked open Isham s latest work American Rococo Like At The Teahouse Cafe this is a collection of Miami Menage essays that have previously been featured on Isham s blog but this time he directs his observantye to American society rather than China s Well at least that is what I was xpecting from the book s title and the first few chapters The name American Rococo conjured up images of a series of cutting ssays on the current situation and trends within the United States a occidental companion to his China focused At The Teahouse Cafe A 21st century The Millionaires Proposal euivalent of Dickens American Notes Instead American Rococo seems to have no overarching theme other than Isham s own personal interests which is perhaps the greatest weakness of the book Much so than his previous work your mileage will vary considerably depending on how interesting you find that topics that Isham decides to coverAnd what a range a topics there are Therudite Mr Cook seems to have an Michael (New Orleans Knights encyclopaedic knowledge on religion Japanese theatre Elizabethan chamber music and the roots of the English language When my interests coincided with the author s I raced through the pagesager to understand his conclusions and memorise any tidbits of information that had previously Memoirs of a Millionaires Mistress escaped me His descriptions of life in South London during Shakespeare s time werengrossing and I caught myself nodding along to his literary theories on Kafka In fact I will be forever mindful of American Rococo for introducing me to the idea that Kafka s unfinished novels are better novels for the precise fact that they are unfinished The idea of an unfinished novel that strays outside the narrative and never reaches its final destination had never occured to me as a perfect vehicle for the themes of helplessness and oppressive bureaucracy that Kafka obsesses overThere is nothing wrong with a series of unrelated Meet Phoenix essays As the author highlighted in his correspondence with me the idea of centering a book ofssays around a theme is a fairly recent phenomenon in contemporary publishing Essays by Montaigne Bacon Emerson and others were never thematically unified The same holds true with fiction One of my most treasured books is a collection of all of Arthur Conan Doyle s non Sherlock short stories The stories range from tales of colonial derring do proto science fiction medicine and that dreadful time when Conan Doyle began dabbling in Spiritualism The whole point is the style the uality of the writing and if the The Mistletoe Melody (A Brookhollow Story, essays maintain a singular world viewHowever I am only human and I m sure that most of the other readers of American Rococo are too uite simply there were several chapters where I just did not share the same interest as the author The articles that interested me will be completely different to those that may interest any other reader but it is inevitable with a myriad of topics thatach individual will find their own hits and misses I had to skim read through the to me long dry and boring Sid and Sam essays on the intricacies of lute craftsmanship in the Middle Ages or rather scholarly paragraphs on clause differences between old English and Danish that should remain in the debating halls of a university English Language department There is also a tendency within the author to slip occasionally into the dry style of academic writing It is obvious that Isham self publishing under his own Magic Theatre label and not beholden to the whims of big media writes primarily for himself rather than for a defined audience There is absolutely nothing wrong with this as genius stems from the individual rather than committee but it does mean that appreciation of his writing depends greatly on your own interest in his chosen topicsReview over Is that all Well if American Rococo was just a collection ofssays on music and literature I would probably draw the review to a conclusion right now Yet amidst the ink spilled on Philip Glass and Beowulf there are other Screwball essays which are focused on Isham s personal philosophy rather than dissections of music and literature It is thesessays that provoked my strongest reactions to the book and not always in a positive wayA picture forms of Isham Cook after reading ven just two or three sentences from any of his books Libertine sexually open promiscuous obsessive in fact the author himself did a decent job of outlining some of these ualities in his semi autobiographical novel Lust and Philosophy Isham regularly recounts his joy in delving into the fleshy pleasures of life He delights in the xcessive the sensuous and the The Outlaw Jesse James extravagant The title of the book American Rococo takes its name from the titularssay where Isham Up All Night expands on his love of Americanxcessiveness To him the rolling curves of the obese are beautiful not disgusting The inflated gibberish of street graffiti The Spiral Dance eye catching rather than anye sore Isham is a true child of his generation In several chapters he promotes the wonders and delights of drug use and free love His The Erotic Mind embrace of free love wildxtravagance LSD trips and happy communal living seems firmly rooted in the 1960s and 70s which is when I presume Isham went through his formative yearsThis utopian vision is repeated time and time again with an Dancing at Midnight (The Splendid Trilogy, evangelical fervour worthy of the Christians and modern Atheists that he dissects in his chapter on modern atheism To the libertine author it is notnough that atheists have discarded traditional conservative beliefs when they still cling to outdated concepts like monogamy To Isham monogamy is a religion that in his position of Prophet must be destroyed and replaced with free love if we are It Hurts When I Poop! a Story for Children Who Are Scared to Use the Potty ever to move forward as a speciesI use the word Prophet deliberately I m an advocate of Fourth Turning theory and when reading American Rococo found it very much to fit within the thinking of what The Fourth Turning described as a Prophet mentality To those unfamiliar with The Fourth Turning it was a landmark work writ. Kespeare and the textbook industry conspired to turn our language's history into agitprop What is the single most dangerous sexual idea thatven the liberated can't handle Ranging across centuries and continents Isham Cook's far flung ssays whether disc.
American Rococo by Isham Cook is a wonderful collection of insightful ssays on a variety of topics which touch unseen and unheard aspects The Double Deception (Code Name: Danger enlightening prose delves into the bubbling issues and goes on talking about author s understanding of things as well his ownxperiencesThere is a discussion on American Talisman where the topic of the overuse of smartphones has been intelligibly brought forth There are points highlighting the Adam Walsh Act and its impact on the American Society The light has been thrown on the issue of obesity prevalent amongst the Americans As you go further down the line you get to know of the luxurious Japanese baths the author s take on traveling and tourism the Shakespearean literature and sexuality The book beautifully slithers down the brink of art literature society religion music and sexuality It breaks free from the norms by ada Isham Cook s American Rococo Essays on The Edge promises intensity Wicked Lies (Men of Summer, exuberance deepngagement and radical However his book also follows some of the other characteristics of the XVIII century style such as asymmetry and frilly carving Let me Grave Tattoo explain The tone and style of thessays varies wildly from the informal and facile such as Why Airbnb Ain t My Cup of Tea or The Breast Etiuette Project which would do better in a b This an Georgia and the Tycoon eclectic and wide ranging collection At first I found it blog like but as I went on I changed my mind In Multiply Cascade Explore my favourite Isham states that In non fiction prose a thematic connection or some other rhetorical turn is used to hook one paragraph up to the nextnabling the writing to flow And flow it does in this collection and in the majority of cases I was hooked The collection has has a depth of knowledge and plenty to challenge the reader Air BNB Breast Etiuette and Japanese mixed bathing didn t interest me but Van Gogh Shakespeare and Kafka certainly did I loved American Rococo and the way descriptive language gave me a wide Churchills Trial eyed view of American consumerism and the damage it can do It s the links that are made that provoke thought Van Gogh s madness to the intensity of his paintings the link between creativity and motion symbiotic travel and pragmatic travelKafka and Beckett and the transience of narrative Mobile phones and the age of consentI could go on Occasionally the writing becomes overwhelming it contains so much and there were points I disagreed with but that s what writing of this genre should be challenging So immerse yourself in American Rococo andnjoy the challenge I did This was a pretty good collection of A Conspiracy of Ravens (Lady Trent Mysteries essays My favorite my far was the first story actually I really liked how the author described the subject no spoilers on the very first page If you re a fan of interestingssays this would be a great book English review Rese a Lakeside Redemption en Espa ol American Rococo Essays On the Edge by Isham Cook Published by Magic Theater Books 2017 240 pages Genre Non Fiction Essay American Rococo is a compendium ofssays written around diverse topics1 Smart phones teenage sexuality and the circular punishment industry in America2 The unfolding baroue and uninhibited beauty of the American3 The search for mixed thermal baths in Japan4 Ferrabosco Marenzio Dowland tc from the madrigal to the English consort5 The changing landscape of contemporary classical music Philip Glass originality popularity and genius Tab Dun cross cultural bridges and innovative instrumentation vs intercontinental musical transliteration6 The reasons for travel from pragmatic travel to symbolic travel7 International lodging options hotelmotelhostel vs free accommodation ServusCouchsurfing vs paid BB accommodation AirBnB8 Female bust and tiuette9 Theater violence sex and syphilis in the England of Shakespeare10 Literary Fiction texture text and context11 Brief history of the English language12 State Religion Family and atheism13 Advanced loveEach chapter of this book is an individual Second Time Loving essay on a specific topic Inach of them Isham Cook manages in a creative and ntertaining way to fragment the different faces of a coin to finally reach the point of his dissertation and show with impeccable clarity and fluidity his position regarding the object of analysis The language is always clear and the author offers the xplanations and references necessary to take the reader by the hand through a trip that is at the same time a small and pleasant class on Dark Awakening each subject and an invitation to research and contrast individuallyAfter reading two of hisssays books I confess that I like very much the style of Isham Cook One does not need to agree with all of his opinions to appreciate the validity of Cook s approach to Hawks Way (Hawks Way each topic and his stylistic mastery I find in thessays on music English language literature and theater valuable approaches with Family Men enough notes to delve into them if desired Personally I loved the first and the last two chapters in the first I found a just and necessary apology about the beauty of obesity in the last two there is a positive approach to militant atheism consensual polygamy and a type of love that goes way beyond conventionalism This is definitely a very good book American Rococo Essays On the Edge por Isham Cook Publicada por Magic Theater Books 2017 240 p ginas G nero No Ficci n Ensayo American Rococos un compendio de Creative Participation ensayos redactadosn torno a temas diversos1 Tel fonos inteligentes sexualidad adolescente y la industria circular del castigo Sabina Spielrein en Am rica2 La belleza desenvolvente barroca y desinhibida de lo americano3 La b sueda de los ba os termales mixtosn Jap n4 Ferrabosco Marenzio Dowland Cognitive Radio Networks etc del madrigal al consorte ingl s5 El cambiante paisaje de la m sica cl sica contempor nea Philip Glass originalidad popularidad y genio Tab Dun puentes transculturales instrumentaciones innovadoras vs transliteraci n musical intercontinental6 Los motivos del viaje del viaje pragm tico al viaje simb lico7 Las opciones internacionales de hospedaje hotelmotelhostal vs hospedaje gratuito ServusCouchsurfing vs hospedaje BB de pago AirBnB8 El busto femenino y la Personnel Management in Government etiueta9 Teatro violencia sexo y s filisn la Inglaterra de Shakespeare10 Ficci n Literaria textura texto y contexto11 Breve historia del idioma ingl s12 Estado Religi n Familia y ate smo13 El amor avanzadoCada cap tulo de Out of This World este libros un The Time It Never Rained ensayo individual sobre un temaspec fico En cada uno de The Child of the Soul and Other Stories ellos Isham Cook logra de manera creativa y amena desmenuzar las distintas caras de una moneda para finalmente llegar al punto de su disertaci n y mostrar con claridad y fluidez impecables su postura respecto al objeto de an lisis El lenguajes siempre claro y Childrens Phantasies el autor ofrece lasxplicaciones y referencias necesarias para llevar de la mano al lector a trav s de un viaje ue s al mismo tiempo una peue a y agradable clase sobre cada tema y una invitaci n a la investigaci n y contrastaci n individualDespu s de leer dos libros de nsayos suyos confieso ue l stilo de Isham Cook me gusta mucho No Gods and Heroes es necesario uestar de acuerdo con todos sus puntos de vista para apreciar la validez de su Science, Technology and Culture enfoue sobre cada tema y su maestr astil stica Encuentro No Beast So Fierce en losnsayos sobre m sica lengua inglesa literatura y teatro n la poca isabelina acercamientos valiosos con las notas suficientes para poder ahondar n Last Chance Bride ellos si as se desea Personalmente mencantaron Whos Cheatin Who? (Thoroughbred Legacy el primero y los dos ltimos cap tulosn Lawman Lover (Outlaws, el primeroncontr una justa y necesaria apolog a sobre la belleza de lo obeso City Girl in Training en los ltimos dos un aproximamiento positivo al ate smo militante la poligamia consensuada y a un tipo de amor m s all de los convencionalismos Definitivamente un muy buen libro I received the book for free from the authorBooktasters Non Fiction on Twitter for an honest reviewWhat can I say about thesessays They are the the perfect blend of facts and Mystery at Kittiwake Bay experience I think my favouritessay was American Talisman looking into smartphone usage and how disastrous it can be if not used wisely I found his views on textingsexting particularly interesting and simultaneously horrifying as the mother of a pre teen girl who wants a smartphone It has definitely given me food for thought in how I approach her getting a phone and how I will teach her about security and conseuences In actual fact Dangerous Waters (Cold Case Files everyssay seemed to be of the same vein sparking curiosity for unknown topics and a rethink of topics I was familiar with Cook takes your hand guiding you to delve into the depths of the topics and yet still leaving you to garner your own conclusion From the aforementioned smartphones to Shakespeare to hot springs and The Husband (Smytheshire, Massachusetts, even Walmart he presents stark reality whilexposing the hidden beauty and complexity of things we don t really give a second thought Cooks voice really spoke to me it felt like an older uncle telling you a story while peppering in life lessons which made for a very relaxing read despite the wei. What do seashells obesity graffiti and the American ghetto have in common Nude hot springs and the Japanese theater Atheists and family values conservatives Why do atheists go on religious pilgrimages How have schools infantilized our understanding of Sha.
Ten in the late 1990s by William Strauss and Neil Howe where they linked historical change to generational change that repeats itself in a never nding cycle Within their theory certain time periods correspond almost to the seasons of the year typically history is a cycle of Crisis war famine revolution a High the post war peace when society operates on shared principals and vision Awakening when a younger generation who are unaware of the horrors of war begin to rebel against the conformity of a peaceful but uniform society Unravelling when society begins to break down institutions are attacked and become weak individualism is strong and back to Crisis The mood and values of the generations born within those different times correspond accordinglyWith his mantra of free love and LSD for all Isham pitomises the Prophet mindset of those born within the awakening time of the 60s and 70s The Prophet sees it upon themselves to destroy the old stablishment and create a new society based on new values You can see this in the mentality of most baby boomers and their unparalleled success of completely transforming society in their image over the last sixty or so years In his final ssay Advanced Love Isham describes how he has stood at the front of the classroom in the image of the Prophet Protecting the Colton Bride Coltons Cowboy Code exhorting his students tombrace polyamory and communal living as his so called most advanced form of love Reading this part I wondered if Isham realised he came across just as Look-Alike Lawman (Texas Twins, evangelical as those Christian teachers who arrive in China and try to surreptitiously convert their students over to Jesus by sprinkling Bible uotes into their lesson planI agree with a lot of what Isham Cook has to say I alsonjoy freedom and liberty and actually agree with almost all of his conclusions on the progression of society it is the results that I disagree with As a member of a younger generation than Isham s I have seen the Daddy Wanted end destination of many of his utopian beliefs For his American Rococo generations afterwards must suffer an American Hangover After the Prophets have completed their great task of destroying the old there is nothing left for the following generation but to wander through the ruins like nomadsDuring the writing of this review Ixchanged some Forbidden Stranger emails with Isham about his views on polyamory In onemail he writesOn polyamory this word is not to be confused with polygamy polygyny or polyandry I have no interest in traditional polygyny still practiced by some Mormons in the US in parts of Africa and the Middle East Snowy River Man etc the keeping of than one wife not always with their full consent That s a kind of slavery and is deplorable and sexist Polyamory is simply the freedom to let people choose how they wish to organize a family and under what terms This could be triads 2 males1 female or 2 females1 male dual couples or group or communal families Children could be raised in common or raisedxclusively by their biological parents Sexual sharing may be allowed or not There are no top down rules Each family unit decides their own rules and what kind of relationships they are willing to Night Moves (Harlequin Blaze entertain with others Ideally there is no oppression coercion brainwashing or cult like behaviourI m actually familiar with polyamory and aware of the distinctions between polyamory polygamy and polyandry However I do not share Isham s rosy view of its benefits In my opinion polyamory cannot and does not work in practice because of basic human nature Both genders are naturally promiscuous but in different ways Whereas a male will wish to copulate with as many different females as possible since sperm is plentiful in comparison toggs females are likely to gravitate towards the higher status males Les brumes d'avalon : roman even if that means sharing access and child paternity with the alpha male with other women in a kind of uasi concubinage This is called hypergamy and there are very good biological reasons why itxists If you were a cavewoman in primitive times it made sense to bear the children of the male with access to the most resources One astonishing statistic is that before the dawn of civilisation seventeen women reproduced for Malakai (Wicked Games, every one manHence it is my belief that the nature of hypergamy means that the ideal of polyamory will always devolve into the nightmarish reality of polygamy Isham writesmphasis mine Ideally there is no oppression coercion brainwashing or cult like behaviour For me that is the killer The ideal may be freedom but look at any social circle structure organisation or company that you have The Carpenters Wife and Heart of Stone encountered in real life The inevitable result is always hierarchy and power plays If the group is lucky it just dissolves when the members graduallyxit if not the Celtic Fire (Rogue Angel, end result is normally conflictDestroying traditional family structures doesn t result in a hippy communal paradise it results in atomised and rootless individuals and a society drowning in anomie the same atomised individuals that Isham describes in hisssay on Airbnb hosts Taking responsibility from biological parents for their children s upbringing doesn t result in The Family Plan everybody helpingach other out at the top of Plato s ladder of love it results in broken homes and state intervention Isham argues for a polyamorous society my rebuttal would be to look at polyamorous societies throughout history and really see how successful they are They went A Family Practice extinct I can agree that monogamy is a kind of religion and a kind of femalenslavement but it s A Doctor in Her Stocking (From Here to Maternity eually a kind of malenslavement It s the promise of a wife to call one s own and the chance to spread one s genes into the next generation that is the basis of all true civilisation Polyamory does not Celebrity Bachelor end in a loving free for all female hypergamynsures that it results in a small number of alpha males with large concubines and armies of disenfranchised men underneath That s not utopia that s a slave society At times I wondered how much Isham really understands about the nature of women despite the considerable amount of time he devotes to them To put it in For Better and Worse even blunter and cruder terms there was than one moment when I wanted to throw the book into the bin and I caught myself muttering it was people like you who fucked up the world Note if any reader wishes to read something which also discusses polyamory but comes to similar negative conclusions as the ones I have raised here I would recommend any of Michel Houellebec s booksIf the preceding paragraph sounds angry and disdainful you re right I didxperience those feelings constantly throughout the Cassidys Kids (Maitland Maternity, essays where Ishamxpands on his utopian vision However let s not let my opposition to Isham s views colour a potential reader s opinion of American Rococo There is much to like here and I would still recommend it to anybody interested in good writing and intellectual debate Just look at the passion it has invoked in me while writing the above paragraphs As I noted in one of my previous reviews of Isham s books the role of a true teacher is to provoke reactions within his students and guide them into thoughts and viewpoints that they may not have considered before In this Isham succeeds once again The two or three Rescuing the Texans Heart essays discussing his polyamorist ideal have probably given me to ponder than anythinglse I ve read this yearSo go and read American Rococo You ll learn a few things that you didn t know before on a wide range of topics that may Wrangled (Whitehorse, MT: Chisholm Cattle Co., evenngage a new found passion within you It will also challenge your notions of freedom and independence I disagreed with nearly Her Cowboy Hero (Refuge Ranch everything Isham had to say but I had a great time doing so Unlimited freedom has conseuences Unlimited freedom has a price In the case of American Rococo that price is about 10 if you buy direct from American Rococo from Isham Cook is well about all I can say is that it is indeed a collection ofssays Essays as compared with fiction and Un hros pour Rayne (Delta Force Heroes t. 1) even informative nonfiction are most prone to over or under appreciation depending largely on how the reader hears the writer s voice For me and this is true of the other works of his I have read find his tone to be camouflage for an admittedly wide but not very deep understanding of what he writes about Trump speaks on topics far and wide also yet no one in their right mind would accu I thoroughlynjoyed reading the book Mine to Take (Nine Circles, especially thessays on the language literature and the arts I might be biased in my review because for the most part I share the views of the author I believe in polyamory atheism the pun intended the importance of travel for any aspiring artist the brokenness of the American culture and the significance of sex The writing was impeccable the His L.A. Cinderella essays were structured beautifully and the flow of words and thoughts wasxuisite However I didn t like some parts of the book that were concerned with Asian culture and living in China Maybe because I spent a couple of years living. Oursing on the most radical or homespun of topics are guided by the notion of the A Groom for Greta (Amish Brides of Celery Fields, edge Thedge represents the limits of conventional understanding the zone beyond stereotypes and groupthink; it is where received ideas are recast in fresh and striking way.
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American novelist and essayist based in China since 1994 Writing philosophy downmarket big concept provocative discriminating outrageous Kirkus Reviews calls my second novel The Kitchens of Canton poignantlanguage barriers abound with dialogue in Cantonese Italian and Latin but Cook isn’t merely interested in verbal language—body language customs and rituals and symbols are also o