Nonfiction Archive

Notes on the State of Virginia: Journey to the Center of an American Document, Queries VII, VIII, and IX

In these three queries, Jefferson attempts to distill the complex meteorological, demographic, and military features of Virginia into a series of data points. His prose—supplemented by graphical tables tracking everything from rainfall to carriage wheels—draws a fine grid over the natural and human activities of the Commonwealth.
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Notes on the State of Virginia: Journey to the Center of an American Document, Query VI

This is the fourth installment of a year-long journey through Thomas Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia. You can read previous installments here, here and here. ** Query VI: “Productions mineral, vegetable and animal” A notice of the mines and other subterraneous riches; its trees, plants, fruits, &c.
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Review: DIMESTORE by Lee Smith

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Hers is a voice that I will never tire of: encouraging, kind, and so forthright about the complexities inherent in life, specifically life lived as a writer, a woman, and a resident of a place that is experiencing the unpredictable transience of time, while also rooting itself in the
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Notes on the State of Virginia: Journey to the Center of an American Document, Queries IV and V

This is the third installment of a year-long journey through Thomas Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia. You can read previous installments here and here. ** Query IV: A notice of its mountains Query V: Its cascades and caverns I walked into Queries IV and V thinking Jefferson
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Review: THE GEOGRAPHY OF GENIUS by Eric Weiner

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The author of The Geography of Genius: A Search for the World’s Most Creative Places, from Ancient Athens to Silicon Valley says our ideas about creativity underestimate the importance of place. But how did creative clusters arise in such varied cultures: Renaissance Florence, The Song Dynasty, Edinburgh during the
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In Bookstores Near You

In 1995, Dennis Covington’s breakout book, Salvation on Sand Mountain (Addison-Wesley), told the story of his immersion into the world of snakehandling, faith healing, and the fervent religious sects of the Appalachians. Back then, his search for renewal was triggered when, as a stringer for the New York Times,
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NOTES ON THE STATE OF VIRGINIA: Journey to the Center of an American Document, Queries II and III

  This is the second installment of a year-long journey through Thomas Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia. Here’s the first installment. ** Query II: A notice of its rivers, rivulets, and how far they are navigable Query III: A notice of the best Seaports of the State,
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Review: SUBLIME PHYSICK by Patrick Madden

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When reading Sublime Physick, the yin-yang symbol comes to mind, as Madden cites academic thinkers and essayists from generations past, alongside contemporary popular icons, usually of the musical variety, specifically his personal favorites like John Lennon and Geddy Lee.
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Review: TRACE: MEMORY, HISTORY, RACE, & THE AMERICAN LANDSCAPE by Lauret Edith Savoy

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Reading nature writing is second in transformative joy only to being in nature. That joy is slippery in Trace: Memory, History, Race, and the American Landscape by Lauret Edith Savoy, where moments of sublimity are often punctuated by cruelty and alienation.
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Review: MONSTER TREK: THE OBSESSIVE SEARCH FOR BIGFOOT by Joe Gisondi

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Monster Trek: The Obsessive Search for Bigfoot Joe Gisondi University of Nebraska Press, February 1 2016 306 pp, $18.95 Buy: paperback | nook | Kindle  “Bigfoot are reported across all social, educational, and economic classes,” writes journalist and professor Joe Gisondi in his new book Monster Trek: The Obsessive
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