Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Title: Game of Thrones and Philosophy: Logic Cuts Deeper Than Swords
Author: Henry Jacoby (editor)
Genre: non-fiction, books on TV, fantasy

Game of Thrones and philosophy in the same sentence? This pop culture/philosophy mash-up caught my eye because 1. Game of Thrones is my favorite show and I need something to hold me over until next year, 2. Since I'm going back to school, I thought this book would help get my brain back into a semi-scholarly mode.

Topic Covered                                     Case Study
biomedical ethics                                   Bran Stark, Khal Drogo
metaphysics                                           direwolves, wargs, wights
evil & injustice                                       Cersei (need we say more?)
moral luck vs. moral responsibility          Tyrion Lannister
cultural relativism                                    Dany
fatalism                                                  "Winter is Coming"
game theory                                           Lannisters' modus operandi
why be moral?                                       Joffrey Baratheon

Other topics include Ned Stark's idealism and how/why that ended badly for him; epistemology- "what we know, how we know it, and what it means to know something" (143)- "You know nothing, Jon Snow"; the dangers of chivalry (keeps women dependent and narrowly defined gender roles & societal roles for both sexes); virtue ethic theory (how to lead the good life), and the golden rule of game theory: "Understand others as they understand themselves" (262).

Sounds mind numbing, but the essays are written in down-to-earth styles (with some humor here and there) and really helps the reader think about the characters and "what makes them tick" and they approach life.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Title: Dad is Fat
Author: Jim Gaffigan
Genre: non-fiction, humor, parenting

Hot pockets!
This book was hilarious and a great stress relief after the past few weeks: getting my son ready for kindergarten and  dealing with the financial aid nightmare at the college I'll be starting at on Monday. Jim Gaffigan adds a humorous spin to the normal parenting/frustration nightmares: taking (multiple) children on an outing, sleep (or the lack thereof). Another bonus: he loves his wife, which shows in his writing but he doesn't get too mushy. The Gaffigans also practice attachment parenting which is usually wonderful until you get a foot slammed in your mouth at 3am. I laughed so hard at some passages during my lunch break that my coworkers demanded I read the passages out loud.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Title: River Cottage Veg
Author: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
Genre: cookbooks, non-fiction

The photography in this cookbook is absolutely gorgeous- almost makes you want to reach through the picture and eat the selected dish.

This is not a vegetarian cookbook and but a cookbook devoted to the encouragement to eat more vegetables, without getting preachy- for our personal health and the planet's environmental health.

Lots of inspiring recipes that make me want to try something new.