We’ve got three really exciting titles coming up this Spring.
First up, Out of Your Mind by Alan Watts. In Out of Your Mind Alan Watts presents six of his most engaging teachings for breaking out of the limits of the rational mind, escaping conventional awareness and coming to understand the great game that is unfolding around us:
Discover the ‘controlled accident’ – stop taking life so seriously and begin to enjoy it with complete sincerity.
Learn to transcend the illusion of ‘the myth of myself’, we are not just skin-encapsulated egos separate from the world around us.
Drawing on ancient and modern sources Alan Watts provides an understanding of the individual’s real place in the universe and a healing alternative for living a more spiritual life.
Alan Watts was instrumental in introducing Eastern religious and philosophical thought to Western readers. Yet he was also a former Anglican priest, and described himself as “a spiritual entertainer.” It is Watts’ openness to all religions and spiritual traditions that continues to inspire his readers today.
Pre-order Out of Your Mind by Alan Watts here: http://souvenirpress.co.uk/product/out-of-your-mind/
Next we have The Sentient Machine by Amir Hussain. In The Sentient Machine Amir Husain, one of the world’s leading technologists, looks at our future as humanity stands on the edge of a second Big Bang, the moment when machines can think independently. Will machines solve all human problems or will they lead us down a dystopian path to human irrelevance?
Husain asks what will be the consequences — from job losses, is Wall-E our future, to the existential questions: how are we intelligent, what constitutes progress, how can AI bring us to “the good life”?
Amir Husain explores the dawn of a new form of intellectual diversity, one that could advance the state of the art in many critical fields, including security, resource management, finance, and energy. The Sentient Machine provides a history of artificial intelligence (boiling down complex computer science and AI concepts into clear, plainspoken language) and draws from a wide variety of cultural and historical references to illustrate its possible future.
Pre-order The Sentient Machine here: http://souvenirpress.co.uk/product/the-sentient-machine/
Finally we have Adventures of a Ballad Hunter by John Lomax. John A. Lomax set out on horseback in 1908 to record and preserve America’s folk music. Over the next four decades he recorded over 5,000 songs, among them were Rock Island Line (which he first heard at the Arkansas Penitentiary), he heard Casey Jones sung in a saloon in Deming, New Mexico, and discovered The Midnight Special when it was performed by a prisoner in Parchman Convict Farm. Lomax also discovered the Blues legend Lead Belly in the Louisiana State Penitentiary.
Adventures of a Ballad Hunter is Lomax’s own memoir of an eventful life containing vibrant, often haunting, stories of the people he met and recorded, as well as the lyrics for dozens of songs. Lomax describes singers and musicians from cowboys such as Silver Jack and Big Bill Swanson to railway workers like Henry Truvillion to prison inmates such as Lead Belly. From Texan cattle camps to Mississippi prison farms he recorded some of the twentieth-century’s most important songs: ‘Home on the Range’ and ‘Goodnight Irene,’ ‘In the Pines’ and the spiritual classic ‘Honey in the Rock’. The stories behind these songs are related here.
John Lomax was the bridge between the oral tradition of passing songs from singer to singer and the modern era where music is preserved by technology. Adventures of a Ballad Hunter is an endlessly interesting account of a fascinating life, from his early years on the road (and always surrounded by music) to the vibrant, troubled, history that lay behind this folk culture.
Pre-order Adventures of a Ballad Hunter here: http://souvenirpress.co.uk/product/adventures-of-a-ballad-hunter/