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December 1995 - Issue No. #21 (p. 19 - 20)


Here are a few books to take away for the holidays or to offer as gifts to fellow teachers.

How to Make the World a Better Place:
116 Ways You Can Make A Difference

by Jeffrey Hollender with Linda Catling (1995)

WW Norton, New York: ISBN: 0-393-31291-7

"Think of all the problems in the world, in your city, on your block: pollution, violence, children who can't read, the homeless. If only somebody would do something... Why not you? Why not now?" With these words as an introduction, this unique book sets out 116 actions you can take to make a difference in solving global, national, and local problems. Topics covered range from nature conservation, war toys, computer activism and rainforests to toxic waste, world hunger, citizen diplomacy and socially responsible investing. Each chapter describes the problem, explains the issues surrounding it, tells what you can do to help, and lists organizations you can contact. As the author says, why should we treat social change as a spectator sport? All it takes to make a difference is one first step. A great book for global teachers!

On Prejudice: A Global Perspective

edited by Daniela Gioseffi (1993)

Anchor Books/Doubleday: New York ISBN: 0-385-46938-1

This unique anthology seeks to explore the fundamental nature of human prejudice from both global and historical perspectives. Containing every form of written expression - essays, memoirs, poetry, fiction - it examines the underlying reasons for the pervasiveness of prejudice throughout human history, from slavery to the Holocaust to apartheid to the ethnic wars in Europe and Africa today. The book ranges from articles on the dynamics of prejudice, through intercultural fiction on the experience of prejudice to a concluding section comprising voices of hope, reconciliation and peace. The book's rich appendix gives biographies of all contributors (Gandhi, Tolstoy, Mandela, Martin Luther King...), key international documents (including the Seville Statement on Violence and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights) and a list of organizations working to promote global understanding and eradicate prejudice worldwide.

Japan At War: An Oral History

by Haruko & Theodore Cook (1992)

The New Press/WW Norton: New York ISBN: 1-56584-039-9

About 3 million Japanese died in WWII, a conflict which raged for years over a huge area causing untold death and suffering to millions in Asia as well as pain and anguish to families round the globe. All around are people who lived through those terrible times, yet there is virtually no public discussion of that terrible event. What was World War II like for Japanese soldiers, sailors, workers, farming wives, factory girls, schoolchildren? How did they survive, what motivated them, what did they learn from it all? This book attempts to explore Japan's war experience through over 70 oral interviews with Japanese (and Koreans) who tell what those times were like and how they survived. The interviews range from kamikaze pilots and war criminals to movie directors and POWs, cover the war in China and SE Asia through Pearl Harbor and Hiroshima, and touch on subjects ranging from forced Korean laborers and war-time censorship to the Nanking massacre and Okinawan group suicides. As we come to the close of this 50th anniversary of World War II, this book can help language teachers in Japan learn about this terrible war of the past and teach for a future of peace.

Combatting Cult Mind Control: Protection from Destructive Cults

by Steven Hassan (1990)

Park Street Press: Rochester, Vermont ISBN: 0-89281-311-3

With the Aum Shinrikyo religious cult trials on TV everyday now in Japan, this is a good chance to read up on destructive cults, mind control and the dangers to our students. This book, written by a former cult member who is now one of America's leading experts in cult awareness counselling, exposes the facts about destructive cults, explains how cults operate and shows how we can teach our students the critical thinking skills they need to protect themselves from psychological manipulation.


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Kip A. Cates, Tottori University, Koyama, Tottori City, JAPAN 680-8551
E-mail: Work Tel/Fax: 0857-31-5650