Category Archives: ~ In the Library

“A room without a book is like a body without a soul.”
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Why the Founder of Mother’s Day Turned Against It : by Sarah Pruitt


a repost

Beginning in the 1850s, Ann Reeves Jarvis of West Virginia started Mothers’ Day Work Clubs in order to teach women proper child-care techniques and sanitation methods. In the years following the Civil War, these same clubs became a unifying force for a country ripped apart by conflict. In 1868, Jarvis and other women organized a Mothers Friendship Day, when mothers gathered with former soldiers of both the Union and Confederacy to promote reconciliation. After Ann Reeves Jarvis died in 1905, it was her daughter Anna Jarvis who would work tirelessly to make Mother’s Day a national holiday.

Fairtradeflowers

Anna Jarvis, who had no children of her own, conceived of Mother’s Day as an occasion for honoring the sacrifices individual mothers made for their children.

In May 1908, she organized the first official Mother’s Day events at a church in her hometown of Grafton, West Virginia, as well as at a Wanamaker’s department store in Philadelphia, where she lived at the time. Jarvis then began writing letters to newspapers and politicians pushing for the adoption of Mother’s Day as an official holiday. By 1912, many other churches, towns and states were holding Mother’s Day celebrations, and Jarvis had established the Mother’s Day International Association. Her hard-fought campaign paid off in 1914, when President Woodrow Wilson signed a bill officially establishing the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.

Jarvis’ conceived of of Mother’s Day as an intimate occasion—a son or daughter honoring the mother they knew and loved—and not a celebration of all mothers. For this reason, she always stressed the singular “Mother’s” rather than the plural. She soon grew disillusioned, as Mother’s Day almost immediately became centered on the buying and giving of printed cards, flowers, candies and other gifts. Seeking to regain control of the holiday she founded, Jarvis began openly campaigning against those who profited from Mother’s Day, including confectioners, florists and other retailers. She launched numerous lawsuits against groups using the name Mother’s Day, and eventually spent much of her sizeable inheritance on legal fees.

In 1925, when an organization called the American War Mothers used Mother’s Day as an occasion for fundraising and selling carnations, Jarvis crashed their convention in Philadelphia and was arrested for disturbing the peace. Later, she even attacked First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt for using Mother’s Day as an occasion to raise money for charity. By the 1940s, Jarvis had disowned the holiday altogether, and even actively lobbied the government to see it removed from the calendar. Her efforts were to no avail, however, as Mother’s Day had taken on a life of its own as a commercial goldmine. Largely destitute, and unable to profit from the massively successful holiday she founded, Jarvis died in 1948 in Philadelphia’s Marshall Square Sanitarium.

The sad history of Mother’s Day founder Anna Jarvis has done nothing to slow down the popularity—and commercialism—of the holiday. According to an annual spending survey conducted by the National Retail Federation, Americans will spend an average of $168.94 on Mother’s Day in 2013, a whopping 11 percent increase from 2012. In total, Mother’s Day spending is expected to reach $20.7 billion this year. In addition to the more traditional gifts (ranging from cards, flowers and candy to clothing and jewelry), the survey showed that an unprecedented 14.1 percent of gift-givers plan to buy their moms high-tech gadgets like smartphones and tablets.

In the Library ~ Silent Spring, by Rachel Carson ~ Women’s History Month


repost

Rachel Carson’s book “Silent Spring“, an early voice for our environment in 1962 

Silent Spring

 See why Carson’s analysis is more relevant now than ever.Buy Silent Spring at Amazon.com     

Rachel Carson, writer, scientist, and ecologist, grew up simply in the rural river town of Springdale, Pennsylvania. Her mother bequeathed to her a life-long love of nature and the living world that Rachel expressed first as a writer and later as a student of marine biology. Carson graduated from Pennsylvania College for Women (now Chatham College) in 1929, studied at the Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory, and received her MA in zoology from Johns Hopkins University in 1932.

She was hired by the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries to write radio scripts during the Depression and supplemented her income writing feature articles on natural history for the Baltimore Sun. She began a fifteen-year career in the federal service as a scientist and editor in 1936 and rose to become Editor-in-Chief of all publications for the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

She wrote pamphlets on conservation and natural resources and edited scientific articles, but in her free time turned her government research into lyric prose, first as an article “Undersea” (1937, for the Atlantic Monthly), and then in a book, Under the Sea-wind (1941). In 1952 she published her prize-winning study of the ocean, The Sea Around Us, which was followed by The Edge of the Sea in 1955. These books constituted a biography of the ocean and made Carson famous as a naturalist and science writer for the public. Carson resigned from government service in 1952 to devote herself to her writing.

She wrote several other articles designed to teach people about the wonder and beauty of the living world, including “Help Your Child to Wonder,” (1956) and “Our Ever-Changing Shore” (1957), and planned another book on the ecology of life. Embedded within all of Carson’s writing was the view that human beings were but one part of nature distinguished primarily by their power to alter it, in some cases irreversibly.

Disturbed by the profligate use of synthetic chemical pesticides after World War II, Carson reluctantly changed her focus in order to warn the public about the long term effects of misusing pesticides. In Silent Spring (1962) she challenged the practices of agricultural scientists and the government, and called for a change in the way humankind viewed the natural world.

Carson was attacked by the chemical industry and some in government as an alarmist, but courageously spoke out to remind us that we are a vulnerable part of the natural world subject to the same damage as the rest of the ecosystem. Testifying before Congress in 1963, Carson called for new policies to protect human health and the environment. Rachel Carson died in 1964 after a long battle against breast cancer. Her witness for the beauty and integrity of life continues to inspire new generations to protect the living world and all its creatures.

in the Library … Elijah Rising – by Lyn LeJune


Have you gotten your copy?

 

About the Author

Lyn LeJeune is the author of several novels. Her stories have been published in literary journals such as Big Muddy: A Journal of The Mississippi River Valley (East Missouri University), The Bishop s House Review (Duke), The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature, Nantahala, Milestone, Identity Theory, Our Stories, Demolition Magazine and Stone Table Review, and The Best of Our Stories. She was recipient of the Paris Writers Institute Scholarship for study in Paris, France. Lyn studied writing at Skidmore, where she worked with Marilynne Robinson and Mary Gordon, Duke, and the Breadloaf Writers Conference. Lyn routinely holds seminars on writing and development of oral history projects and has a gift for one-on-one conversation, communicating with large audiences, and working with smaller audiences in venues such as book clubs and seminars.
 
 One of Lyn s first readers for Elijah Rising was Howard Zinn, who commented: I read it in two sittings, became involved in the story. You write very well! Best wishes, Howard ZinnLyn is 100% Cajun and makes the best gumbo in South Louisiana.
                

In the Library … Last Call at the Oasis, by Jessica Yu – Woman’s History Month


The Global Clean – Water Crisis

The Scientists in Jessica Yu‘s documentary, about the global clean-water crisis, say that half the world’s population will no have access to adequate drinking water by the year 2025. The documentary is deftly constructed and devastating, the film is a stunning eye opener that will at the very least, have you taking shorter showers and turning off the tap while you brush your teeth. – jg Vogue

Last Call at the Oasis ~ the Book … edited by Karl Weber  ~ the Video can be seen on youtube … Part 1 of 6 is below

Take a look at the Trailer below …

http://www.lastcallattheoasis.com/
https://www.facebook.com/lastcallattheoasis
http://twitter.com/#!/lastcalloasis

In select theaters 5/4

Developed, financed and executive produced by Participant Media, the company responsible for AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH, FOOD, INC. and WAITING FOR “SUPERMAN”, LAST CALL AT THE OASIS presents a powerful argument for why the global water crisis will be the central issue facing our world this century.

Illuminating the vital role water plays in our lives, exposing the defects in the current system and depicting communities already struggling with its ill-effects, the film features activist Erin Brockovich and such distinguished experts as Peter Gleick, Alex Prud’homme, Jay Famiglietti and Robert Glennon.

In the Library … the Sunburnt Queen


The Sunburnt Queen is an extraordinary narrative. The writing’s fresh immediacy brings history to life.”—The Sunday Independent (South Africa)

In the late 1730s, the local inhabitants of South Africa found a seven-year-old girl called Bessie, washed ashore on the beach of the Wild Coast. Bessie was brought up by them, growing into a young woman of legendary beauty and wisdom, and marrying one of the most important tribal chiefs in the area.

Using oral histories and written accounts by early missionaries, Hazel Crampton traces the extraordinary story of Bessie and the turbulent history of the Eastern Cape.

Resource: amazon.com