Diamonds are almost completely useless, but are prized above all other gems. Historically they have attracted crimes of passion and awful cold-blooded efficiency, have bedazzled the greatest filmstars and the most opulent courts, and provided the incentive for adventure, destruction and greed on a monumental scale.
In the middle of New York City lies a neighborhood where all secrets are valuable, all assets are liquid, and all deals are sealed with a blessing rather than a contract. Welcome to the diamond district. Ninety percent of all diamonds that enter America pass through these few blocks, but the inner workings of this mysterious world are known only to the people who inhabit it. In Precious Objects, twenty-six-year-old journalist Alicia Oltuski, the daughter and granddaughter of diamond dealers, seamlessly blends family narrative with literary reportage to reveal the fascinating secrets of the diamond industry and its madcap characters: an Elvis-impersonating dealer, a duo of diamond-detective brothers, and her own eccentric father. With insight and drama, Oltuski limns her family’s diamond-paved move from communist Siberia to a displaced persons camp in post–World War II Germany to New York’s diamond district, exploring the connections among Jews and the industry, the gem and its lore, and the exotic citizens of this secluded world. Entertaining and illuminating, Precious Objects offers an insider’s look at the history, business, and society behind one of the world’s most coveted natural resources, providing an unforgettable backstage pass to an extraordinary and timeless show.
Africa supplies the majority of the world’s diamonds, yet consumers generally know little about the origins and history of these precious stones beyond sensationalized media accounts of so-called blood diamonds. Stones of Contention explores the major developments in the remarkable history of Africa’s diamonds, from the earliest stirrings of international interest in the continent’s mineral wealth in the first millennium A.D. to the present day. In the European colonial period, the discovery of diamonds in South Africa ushered in an era of unprecedented greed during which monopolistic enterprises exploited both the mineral resources and the indigenous workforce. In the aftermath of World War II, the governments of newly independent African states, both democratic and despotic, joined industry giant De Beers and other corporations to oversee and profit from mining activity on the continent. The book also considers the experiences of a wide array of Africans — from informal artisanal miners, company mineworkers, and indigenous authorities to armed rebels, mining executives, and premiers of mineral-rich states — and their relationships to the stones that have the power to bring both wealth and misery. With photos and maps, Stones of Contention illustrates the scope and complexity of the African diamond trade as well as its impact on individuals and societies.
Images of diamonds appear everywhere in American culture. And everyone who has a diamond has a story to tell about it. Our stories about diamonds not only reveal what we do with these tiny stones, but also suggest how we create value, meaning, and identity through our interactions with material culture in general. Things become meaningful through our interactions with them, but how do people go about making meaning? What can we learn from an ethnography about the production of identity, creation of kinship, and use of diamonds in understanding selves and social relationships? By what means do people positioned within a globalized political-economy and a compelling universe of advertising interact locally with these tiny polished rocks? This book draws on 12 months of fieldwork with diamond consumers in New York City as well as an analysis of the iconic De Beers campaign that promised romance, status, and glamour to anyone who bought a diamond to show that this thematic pool is just one resource among many that diamond owners draw upon to engage with their own stones. The volume highlights the important roles that memory, context, and circumstance also play in shaping how people interpret and then use objects in making personal worlds. It shows that besides operating as subjects in an ad-burdened universe, consumers are highly creative, idiosyncratic, and theatrical agents.
This Handbook showcases the latest thinking and findings from a group of senior and promising young scholars around the world who have come together in an effort to broaden our perspectives in understanding crime and social control across borders and nationalities. It is divided into three parts, in which three distinct but overlapping types of crime are presented and discussed: international crime, transnational crime, and national crime.
This student-focused text provides an emphasis on skills development. Packed with real-life examples of what can go wrong with even the most well-conceived strategies, there is a focus on realism throughout. With a highly accessible writing style, this text it is an invaluable learning tool for all students in this area.
The Marketing Faculty of The Kellogg School of Management
Author: Alice M. Tybout
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
Category: Business & Economics
The Foreword by renowned marketing guru Philip Kotler sets the stage for a comprehensive review of the latest strategies for building, leveraging, and rejuvenating brands. Destined to become a marketing classic, Kellogg on Branding includes chapters written by respected Kellogg marketing professors and managers of successful companies. It includes: The latest thinking on key branding concepts, including brand positioning and design Strategies for launching new brands, leveraging existing brands, and managing a brand portfolio Techniques for building a brand-centered organization Insights from senior managers who have fought branding battles and won This is the first book on branding from the faculty of the Kellogg School, the respected resource for dynamic marketing information for today's ever-changing and challenging environment. Kellogg is the brand that executives and marketing managers trust for definitive information on proven approaches for solving marketing dilemmas and seizing marketing opportunities.
Inside the Race for the World's Most Seductive Metal
Author: Matthew Hart
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Since the 2008 financial crisis the price of gold has sky-rocketed, from around $800 an ounce in August of that year to a peak of around $1700 an ounce. Fortunes have been made, and this has kicked off an unprecedented gold-mining and prospective boom around the world. In this book Matthew Hart takes readers on a journey around the world and through history to tell the story of how gold became the world's most precious commodity, the highlights of its dramatic, tempestuous history, and the behind-the-scenes intrigue of the current boom. He ends this controversial rollercoaster story by revealing what the experts are saying about the profound changes underway in the gold market and the prospects for the future.