Smithsonian Digital

  • Leonardo da Vinci was one of history's true geniuses, equally brilliant as an artist, scientist, and mathematician. Readers of The Da Vinci Code were given a glimpse of the mysterious connections between math, science, and Leonardo's art. Math and the Mona Lisa picks up where The Da Vinci Code left off, illuminating Leonardo's life and work to uncover connections that, until now, have been known only to scholars.
    Bülent Atalay, a distinguished scientist and artist, examines the science and mathematics that underlie Leonardo's work, paying special attention to the proportions, patterns, shapes, and symmetries that scientists and mathematicians have also identified in nature. Following Leonardo's own unique model, Atalay searches for the internal dynamics of art and science, revealing to us the deep unity of the two cultures. He provides a broad overview of the development of science from the dawn of civilization to today's quantum mechanics. From this base of information, Atalay offers a fascinating view into Leonardo's restless intellect and modus operandi, allowing us to see the source of his ideas and to appreciate his art from a new perspective.
    From the Hardcover edition.

  • The best way to see--really see--any city is on foot. The perennial favorite Washington on Foot has been compeltely revised and updated to offer 24 walking tours of Washington's neighborhoods. Familiar monuments and museums are all here, side-by-side with lesser-known historic sites and storied residential neighborhoods. Washington on Foot offers history, culture, architecture, urban planning, and much more. It's the complete city in a tidy package and the only "outdoor" Washington guidebook needed. Ideal not only for visitors but for locals who truly want to get to know their city.
    The updated fifth edition of this essential guide features user-friendly maps, architectural illustrations, historical and culture information, and much more.

  • Anglais When Thunder Rolled

    Ed Rasimus

    Ed Rasimus straps the reader into the cockpit of an F105 Thunderchief fighterbomber in his engaging account of the Rolling Thunder campaign in the skies over North Vietnam. Between 1965 and 1968, more than 330 F105s were lostyes'>#8212;the highest loss rate in Southeast Asiayes'>#8212;and many pilots were killed, captured, and wounded because of the Air Forceyes'>#8217;s disastrous tactics. The descriptions of Rasimusyes'>#8217;s one hundred missions, some of the most dangerous of the conflict, will satisfy anyone addicted to vivid, heartstopping aerial combat, as will the details of his transformation from a young man paralyzed with selfdoubt into a battlehardened veteran. His unique perspective, candid analysis, and the sheer power of his narrative rank his memoir with the finest, most entertaining of the war.From the Hardcover edition.

  • Counting the Days is the story of six prisoners of war imprisoned by both sides during the conflict the Japanese called the "Pacific War." As in all wars, the prisoners were civilians as well as military personnel. Two of the prisoners were captured on the second day of the war and spent the entire war in prison camps: Garth Dunn, a young Marine captured on Guam who faced a death rate in a Japanese prison 10 times that in battle; and Ensign Kazuo Sakamaki, who suffered the ignominy of being Japanese POW number 1. Simon and Lydia Peters were European expatriates living in the Philippines; the Japanese confiscated their house and belongings, imprisoned them, and eventually released them to a harrowing jungle existence caught between Philippine guerilla raids and Japanese counterattacks. Mitsuye Takahashi was a U.S. citizen of Japanese descent living in Malibu, California, who was imprisoned by the United States for the duration of the war, disrupting her life and separating her from all she owned. Masashi Itoh was a Japanese soldier who remained hidden in the jungles of Guam, held captive by his own conscience and beliefs until 1960, 15 years after the end of the war. This is the story of their struggles to stay alive, the small daily triumphs that kept them going--and for some, their almost miraculous survival.

  • Hailed when it was first published in 1985 as the bible of U.S. collections management, A Legal Primer on Managing Museum Collections offers the only comprehensive discussion of the legal questions faced by museums regarding collections. This revised and expanded third edition addresses the many legal developments--including a comprehensive discussion of stolen art and the international movement of cultural property, recent developments in copyright, and the effects of burgeoning electronic uses--that have occurred during the past twenty-five years. An authorative, go-to book for any museum professional, Legal Primer offers detailed explanations of the law, suggestions for preventing legal problems, and numerous case studies of lawsuits involving museum collections.

  • Was Roger Williams too pure for the Puritans, and what does that have to do with Rhode Island? Why did Augustine Herman take ten years to complete the map that established Delaware? How did Rocky Mountain rogues help create the state of Colorado? All this and more is explained in Mark Stein's new book.
    How the States Got Their Shapes Too follows How the States Got Their Shapes looks at American history through the lens of its borders, but, while How The States Got Their Shapes told us why, this book tells us who. This personal element in the boundary stories reveals how we today are like those who came before us, and how we differ, and most significantly: how their collective stories reveal not only an historical arc but, as importantly, the often overlooked human dimension in that arc that leads to the nation we are today.
    The people featured in How the States Got Their Shapes Too lived from the colonial era right up to the present. They include African Americans, Native Americans, Hispanics, women, and of course, white men. Some are famous, such as Thomas Jefferson, John Quincy Adams, and Daniel Webster. Some are not, such as Bernard Berry, Clarina Nichols, and Robert Steele. And some are names many of us know but don't really know exactly what they did, such as Ethan Allen (who never made furniture, though he burned a good deal of it).
    In addition, How the States Got Their Shapes Too tells of individuals involved in the Almost States of America, plaes we sought to include but ultimately did not: Canada, the rest of Mexico (we did get half), Cuba, and, still an issue, Puerto Rico.
    Each chapter is largely driven by voices from the time, in the form of excerpts from congressional debates, newspapers, magazines, personal letters, and diaries.
    Told in Mark Stein's humorous voice, How the States Got Their Shapes Too is a historical journey unlike any other you've taken. The strangers you meet here had more on their minds than simple state lines, and this book makes for a great new way of seeing and understanding the United States.
    From the Hardcover edition.

  • A former Africa editor for The Economist, Robert Guest addresses the troubled continent's thorniest problems: war, AIDS, and above all, poverty. Newly updated with a preface that considers political and economic developments of the past six years, The Shackled Continentis engrossing, highly readable, and as entertaining as it is tragic.
    Guest pulls the veil off the corruption and intrigue that cripple so many African nations, posing a provocative theory that Africans have been impoverished largely by their own leaders' abuses of power. From the minefields of Angola to the barren wheat fields of Zimbabwe, Guest gathers startling evidence of the misery African leaders have inflicted on their people. But he finds elusive success stories and examples of the resilience and resourcefulness of individual Africans, too; from these, he draws hope that the continent will eventually prosper. Guest offers choices both commonsense and controversial for Africans and for those in the West who wish Africa well.

  • As command module pilot for the Apollo 15 mission to the moon in 1971, Al Worden flew on what is widely regarded as the greatest exploration mission that humans have ever attempted. He spent six days orbiting the moon, including three days completely alone, the most isolated human in existence. During the return from the moon to earth he also conducted the first spacewalk in deep space, becoming the first human ever to see both the entire earth and moon simply by turning his head. The Apollo 15 flight capped an already-impressive career as an astronaut, including important work on the pioneering Apollo 9 and Apollo 12 missions, as well as the perilous flight of Apollo 13.
    Nine months after his return from the moon, Worden received a phone call telling him he was fired and ordering him out of his office by the end of the week. He refused to leave.
    What happened in those nine months, from being honored with parades and meetings with world leaders to being unceremoniously fired, has been a source of much speculation for four decades. Worden has never before told the full story around the dramatic events that shook NASA and ended his spaceflight career. Readers will learn them here for the first time, along with the exhilarating account of what it is like to journey to the moon and back. It's an unprecedentedly candid account of what it was like to be an Apollo astronaut, with all its glory but also its pitfalls.
    From the Hardcover edition.

  • Anglais Madcap May

    Richard Kurin

    May Yohe was a popular entertainer from humble American origins who married and then abandoned a wealthy English Lord who owned the fabled Hope diamond--one of the most valuable objects in the world and now exhibited at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. May was a romantic who had numerous lovers and at least three husbands--though the tabloids rumored twelve. One included the playboy son of the Mayor of New York. May separated from him--twice--and cared for her next husband, a South African war hero and invalid whom she later shot.
    Crossing the paths of Ethel Barrymore, Boris Karloff, Oscar Hammerstein, Teddy Roosevelt, Consuelo Vanderbilt, and the Prince of Wales, May Yohe was a foul-mouthed, sweet-voiced showgirl who drew both the praise and rebuke of Nobel laureate George Bernard Shaw. Nicknamed "Madcap May," she was a favorite of the press. In later years she faced several maternity claims and a law suit which she won. She was hospitalized in an insane asylum and escaped. She ran a rubber plantation in Singapore, a hotel in New Hampshire, and a chicken farm in Los Angeles. When all else failed, she washed floors in a Seattle shipyard, and during the Depression held a job as a government clerk. Shortly before her death, she fought, successfully, to regain her lost U.S. citizenship.
    How was this woman, May Yohe, able to charm her way to international repute, live an impossible life, and also find the strength to persevere in light of the losses she suffered--in wealth, citizenship, love, and sanity? Madcap May, assembled from her writings and historical interviews, archival records, newspaper stories, scrapbooks, photographs, playbills, theatrical reviews, souvenirs, and silent film, tells her heretofore lost story.

  • In this volume of 29 essays, Weil's overarching concern is that museums be able to "earn their keep"--that they make themselves matter--in an environment of potentially shrinking resources. Also included in this collection are reflections on the special qualities of art museums, an investigation into the relationship of current copyright law to the visual arts, a detailed consideration of how the museums and legal system of the United States have coped with the problem of Nazi-era art, and a series of delightfully provocative training exercises for those anticipating entry into the museum field.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Winner of the Southern Anthropological Society's prestigious James Mooney Award, Uncommon Ground takes a unique archaeological approach to examining early African American life. Ferguson shows how black pioneers worked within the bars of bondage to shape their distinct identity and lay a rich foundation for the multicultural adjustments that became colonial America.Through pre-Revolutionary period artifacts gathered from plantations and urban slave communities, Ferguson integrates folklore, history, and research to reveal how these enslaved people actually lived. Impeccably researched and beautifully written.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • This second edition of Catherine J. Allen's distinctive ethnography of the Quechua-speaking people of the Andes brings their story into the present. She has added an extensive afterword based on her visits to Sonqo in 1995 and 2000 and has updated and revised parts of the original text. The book focuses on the very real problem of cultural continuity in a changing world, and Allen finds that the hold life has in 2002 is not the same as it was in 1985.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Anglais Kelly

    Clarence L Johnson

    Clarence L. Kelly Johnson led the design of such crucial aircraft as the P-38 and Constellation, but he will be more remembered for the U-2 and SR-71 spy planes. His extraordinary leadership of the Lockheed Skunk Works cemented his reputation as a legendary figure in American aerospace management.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Anglais Moon Lander

    Thomas J Kelly

    Chief engineer Thomas J. Kelly gives a firsthand account of designing, building, testing, and flying the Apollo lunar module. It was, he writes, "an aerospace engineer';s dream job of the century." Kelly';s account begins with the imaginative process of sketching solutions to a host of technical challenges with an emphasis on safety, reliability, and maintainability. He catalogs numerous test failures, including propulsion-system leaks, ascent-engine instability, stress corrosion of the aluminum alloy parts, and battery problems, as well as their fixes under the ever-present constraints of budget and schedule. He also recaptures the exhilaration of hearing Apollo 11';s Neil Armstrong report that "The Eagle has landed," and the pride of having inadvertently provided a vital "lifeboat" for the crew of the disabled Apollo 13.
    From the Hardcover edition.

  • Fighter Pilot's Heaven presents the dramatic inside story of the American military's transition into the jet age, as told by a flyer whose life depended on its success. With colorful anecdotes about fellow pilots as well as precise technical information, Donald S. Lopez describes how it was to be behind the stick as a test pilot from 1945 to 1950, when the U.S. military was shifting from war to peacetime operations and from propeller to jet aircraft.
    An ace pilot who had served with Gen. Claire Chennault's Flying Tiger Fighter Group, Lopez was assigned at the close of World War II to the elite Proof Test Group of the Air Proving Ground Command. Located at Eglin Field (later Eglin Air Force Base) in Florida, the group determined the operational suitability of Air Force weapons systems and aircraft and tested the first operational jet, the P-80 Shooting Star. Jet fighters required new techniques, tactics, and weaponry. Lopez recounts historic test flights in the P-59, P-80, and P-84, among other planes, describing complex combat maneuvers, hair-raising landings in unusual positions, and disastrous crashes and near crashes. This memoir is peppered with lively accounts of many pilots and their colleagues, revealing how airmen coped with both exhilarating successes and sometimes tragic failures.

  • Ethics on the Ark presents a passionate, multivocal discussion--among zoo professionals, activists, conservation biologists, and philosophers--about the future of zoos and aquariums, the treatment of animals in captivity, and the question of whether the individual, the species, or the ecosystem is the most important focus in conservation efforts. Contributors represent all sides of the issues. Moving from the fundamental to the practical, from biodiversity to population regulation, from animal research to captive breeding, Ethics on the Ark represents an important gathering of the many fervent and contentious viewpoints shaping the wildlife conservation debate.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • The ideas of US Air Force Colonel John Boyd have transformed American military policy and practice. A first-rate fighter pilot and a self-taught scholar, he wrote the first manual on jet aerial combat; spearheaded the design of both of the Air Force's premier fighters, the F-15 and the F-16; and shaped the tactics that saved lives during the Vietnam War and the strategies that won the Gulf War. Many of America's best-known military and political leaders consulted Boyd on matters of technology, strategy, and theory.
    In The Mind of War, Grant T. Hammond offers the first complete portrait of John Boyd, his groundbreaking ideas, and his enduring legacy. Based on extensive interviews with Boyd and those who knew him as well as on a close analysis of Boyd's briefings, this intellectual biography brings the work of an extraordinary thinker to a broader public.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Growing recognition of the complexity of animals' physical, social, and psychological lives in the wild has led both zookeepers and the zoo-going public to call for higher environmental standards for animals in captivity.
    Bringing together the work of animal behaviorists, zoo biologists, and psychologists, Second Nature explores a range of innovative strategies for environmental enrichment in laboratories and marine parks, as well as in zoos. From artificial fleeing-prey devices for leopards to irregular feeding schedules for whales, the practices discussed have resulted in healthier, more relaxed animals that can breed more easily and can exert some control over their environments. Moving beyond the usual studies of primates to consider the requirements of animals as diverse as reptiles, amphibians, marine mammals, small cats, hooved grazers, and bears, contributors argue that whether an animal forages in the wild or plays computer games in captivity, the satisfaction its activity provides--rather than the activity itself--determines the animal's level of physical and psychological well-being.
    Second Nature also discusses the ways in which environmental enrichment can help zoo-bred animals develop the stamina and adaptability for survival in the wild, and how it can produce healthier lab animals that yield more valid test results. Providing a theoretical framework for the science of environmental enrichment in a variety of settings, the book reews and extends a humane approach to the keeping and conservation of animals.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Debating the practices of museums, galleries, and festivals, Exhibiting Cultures probes the often politically charged relationships among aesthetics, contexts, and implicit assumptions that govern how art and artifacts are displayed and understood. The contributors--museum directors, curators, and scholars in art history, folklore, history, and anthropology--represent a variety of stances on the role of museums and their function as intermediaries between the makers of art or artifacts and the eventual viewers.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • In 1943 two spirited young teachers decided to do their part for the war effort by spending their summer vacation working the swing shift on a B-24 production line at a San Diego bomber plant. Entering a male-dominated realm of welding torches and bomb bays, they learned to use tools that they had never seen before, live with aluminum shavings in their hair, and get along with supervisors and coworkers from all walks of life.
    They also learned that wearing their factory slacks on the street caused men to treat them in a way for which their "dignified schoolteacher-hood" hadn't prepared them. At times charming, hilarious, and incredibly perceptive, Slacks and Calluses brings into focus an overlooked part of the war effort, one that forever changed the way the women were viewed in America.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Written in accessible, nontechnical language, this book's twenty-three essays provide invaluable conservation guidelines for a variety of materials and media. Focusing also on proper storage techniques and environmental control, contributors offer information on emergency planning, disaster management, and identifying damages that may require professional treatment.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Into the Teeth of the Tiger provides a vivid, pilots-eye view of one of the most extended projections of American air power in World War II Asia. Lopez chronicles every aspect of fighter combat in that theater: harrowing aerial battles, interludes of boredom and inactivity, instances of courage and cowardice. Describing different pilots roles in each type of mission, the operation of the P-40, and the use of various weapons, he tells how he and his fellow pilots faced not only constant danger but also the munitions shortages, poor food, and rat-infested barracks of a remote sector of the war. The author also offers keen observations of wartime China, from the brutalities of the Japanese occupation to the conflict between Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalists and the Communist movement.
    This edition of Lopez's acclaimed account features new photographs, most of which have never before been published. Relating how the 23rd Fighter Group continued to win battles even as the Japanese gained ground, Into the Teeth of the Tiger is the humorous and insightful memoir of an ace pilot caught in the paradox of victory in retreat.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Witness in Our Time traces the recent history of social documentary photography in the words of twenty-nine of the genre's best photographers, editors, and curators, showing how the profession remains vital, innovative, and committed to social change. The second edition includes a new section of interviews on documentary photography in the field and an exploration of the role of photojournalism in 21st-century media. Witness in Our Time provides an insider's view of a profession that continues to confront questions of art and truth while extending the definitions of both.

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