August 5, 2015
For Ted Rall – editorial cartoonist, unembedded war reporter, and longtime Seven Stories author — it’s been a rough week.
Last May, Ted wrote a short editorial on the LAPD’s treatment of jaywalkers for the LA Times, a newspaper that had often published his cartoons and columns. Rall began his piece by describing a time he had been stopped by the LAPD for jaywalking in 2001:
“All of a sudden, a motorcycle officer zoomed over, threw me up against the wall, slapped on the cuffs, roughed me up and wrote me a ticket. It was an ugly scene, and in broad daylight it must have looked like one, because within minutes there were a couple of dozen passersby shouting at the cop.
“Another motorcycle officer appeared, asked the colleague what the heck he was thinking and ordered him to let me go, which he did. But not before he threw my driver’s license into the sewer.”
Shockingly, more than ten weeks later, the Times announced it was unceremoniously firing Rall, a Pulitzer Prize-nominated former president of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists, over the article.
July 10, 2015
In 2013, we were delighted to publish Minecraft: The Unlikely Tale of Markus “Notch” Persson and the Game that Changed Everything. The results were pretty huge: the book was praised as “a celebration of the power of imagination and creativity,” its authors were cheered for their detailed portrait of a game designer who was “more like a musician or a painter,” and tens of thousands of copies flew off shelves — sometimes faster than we could print ‘em.
We got the message: people really like Minecraft! So when we heard, late in 2014, that Microsoft was looking to buy Minecraft’s parent company, Mojang, for upwards of two billion-with-a-b dollars, we decided it was time to update our book. The new second edition of Minecraft is shaping up to be just as big of a deal — already Wired magazine has published an excerpt, and fans have been clamoring for copies of the expanded edition since well before its release.
June 11, 2015
In a recent column in Salon, Bill Curry wrote:
“Though a private citizen, [Ralph] Nader [has] shepherded more bills through Congress than all but a handful of American presidents. If that sounds like an outsize claim, try refuting it. His signature wins [have] included landmark laws on auto, food, consumer product and workplace safety; clean air and water; freedom of information, and consumer, citizen, worker and shareholder rights. In a century only Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson passed more major legislation.”
Since the publication, half a century ago, of Ralph’s landmark Unsafe at any Speed (by which he initiated the consumer movement, in Curry’s words, “as just one guy banging away at a typewriter”), he has been perhaps America’s foremost voice of conscience and public sobriety, a champion of working- and middle-class Americans, and the unofficial First Citizen of our republic.
When things get serious, Ralph’s who you want around.
May 11, 2015
Happy Mother’s Day, y’all!
As we take time out to celebrate all the roles that mothers and motherhood play in our lives, Seven Stories is proud to feature a sale on ten of our back list titles, each one considering motherhood, childbirth, and women’s health from a different perspective. Order any of these titles through Sunday, May 17th, and get 65% off! Just enter the discount code MOTHERSDAY as you check out.Birth Matters by Ina May Gaskin From a peerless midwife and childbirth educator, one of the International Planned Parenthood Federation’s Top 6 books of 2011 Joyous Childbirth Changes the World by Tadashi Yoshimura Dr. Tadashi Yoshimura is an obstetrician whose clinic in Okazaki has become legendary for accepting high-risk patients and achieving stunningly positive outcomes In the Spirit of Homebirth by Bronwyn Preece The voices of women, men, and children, along with midwives and doulas, are gathered here by the Canadian artist and earthBODYment pioneer Bronwyn Preece Generation Roe by Sarah Erdreich A look inside the future of the pro-choice movement by a leading women’s health advocate In Our Control by Laura Eldridge A complete guide to contraceptive choices for women The Postpartum Effect by Arlene M Huysman Drawing on decades of clinical experience, a leading psychologist specializing in mood disorders offers a close look at postpartum depression, which affects more than 400,000 Americans each year Voices of the Women’s Health Movement (Volumes 1 & 2) by Barbara Seaman with Laura Eldridge The more than two hundred contributors to this two-volume compilation, the capstone of Barbara Seaman’s decades-long work at the forefront of advocacy for women’s health, include Jennifer Baumgardner, Angela Davis, Barbara Ehrenreich, Germaine Greer, Shulamith Firestone, Erica Jong, Molly Haskell, Shere Hite, Susie Orbach, Judith Rossner, Gloria Steinem, Sojourner Truth, Naomi Wolf, and many others.
April 27, 2015
It is with extreme sadness that we note the passing on April 23rd of Dr. Carl Jensen, media critic, beloved professor, and founder, in 1976, of Project Censored. He was eighty-five.
Carl Jensen was born in Brooklyn, NY. He served in Air Force intelligence during the Korean War, and later worked in advertising during its Mad Men-era heyday. In the late sixties, realizing that his current occupation did not match his intellectual and humanitarian ambitions, he went back to school an earned his PhD in sociology from UC Santa Barbara.
In the mid-seventies, observing the increasing stranglehold corporate interests had on US news media, Carl saw the need for an independent organization capable of monitoring the news and exposing the corporate bias reflected in how events were — or weren’t — portrayed there. He envisioned a project that would track the most crucial developments in national and international affairs, while simultaneously interrogating the mainstream media’s frequent failures to report it.
March 20, 2015
Danny Schechter was a prince of the American Left, someone who always showed up, who kept pace with the beat of change and could be counted on to see that the values of social justice were represented in the media, whether at WBCN-FM in Boston where as “Danny Schechter the News Dissector” he got his start, or at CNN where he was a producer, or at ABC where as a producer for 20/20 he won two National News Emmys. Perhaps his greatest journalistic achievement was South Africa Now, a weekly television news magazine about South Africa at a most critical moment in its history, which ran on public television in the US and in more than thirty foreign countries from 1988-91. When Nelson Mandela toured the US after his release from prison, Danny was the only American documentary filmmaker Mandela trusted to travel with him and to film the tour.
February 14, 2015
My Florence is photographer Art Shay’s heartbreaking love song to his tender, fierce, infinitely beloved late wife. Grab a kleenex and watch this:
Then pick up a copy to slip in with some chocolates for the one you love.
February 7, 2015
It is with extreme sadness that we mourn the great Assia Djebar, who passed away this week at the age of seventy-eight.
An admired and beloved author, translator, and filmmaker, Djebar was born Fatima-Zohra Imalayen on June 30, 1936, in the Algerian town of Cherchell. Her novels and poems boldly face the challenges and struggles she knew as a feminist living under patriarchy and an intellectual living under colonialism and its aftermath. Djebar’s writing, marked by a regal unwillingness to compromise in the face of ethical, linguistic, and narrative complexities, has attracted devoted followers around the world, and received numerous awards and recognitions, including the Venice International Critics’ Prize, the Neustadt International Prize for Literature, the Yourcenar Prize, the Frankfurt Peace Prize, and a knighthood in France’s Legion of Honor. She was the first Algerian woman to be admitted to France’s prestigious École Normale Supérieure, and the first writer from the Maghreb to be admitted to the Académie Française.
January 18, 2015
“Tolstoy said that happy families are all the same and unhappy families are the most interesting,” Rosen said recently, loosely adapting the beginning of “Anna Karenina.” “Winning teams can be interesting, but they’re very rarely funny and very rarely tragic. And guys on winning teams don’t usually complain, even if they’re the 12th man.”
January 9, 2015
Happy new year! This January, days have been dark in more ways than one, with an act of shocking brutality marring our celebrations at the start of 2015. It’s a moment to renew our commitment to struggle, to invigorate our consciences, and to cast the light of imagination into the world more brightly than ever. We’re pleased to have several books forthcoming that do exactly that.
In this searing conclusion to the Sailor and Lula series that has made him a cult literary icon, Barry Gifford takes us on a cross-country vision quest led by Pace Roscoe Ripley, Sailor and Lula’s son, in pursuit of the up-down, a mysterious fifth direction that forms the axis of all thought and imagination. In the hilarious yet brooding neo-noir tradition of Gifford’s best work, The Up-Down is a capstone that brings us back to beginnings, a conclusion that leaves us precisely where started, and a lyrical meditation on a world that is, as Gifford has famously written, “wild at heart and weird on top.”
February 9 of this year will mark the twentieth anniversary of the Mexican army’s notorious sweep through Chiapas in violation of the ceasefire it had reached with the Zapatista movement the previous January — an infamous date in the history of the movement.