A Jesuit priest and founder of Homeboy Industries traces his experiences of working with gangs in Los Angeles for three decades, sharing what his efforts have taught him about faith, compassion, and the enduring power of radical kinship.
In a moving example of unconditional love in difficult times, Gregory Boyle, the Jesuit priest and New York Times bestselling author of Tattoos on the Heart, shares what working with gang members in Los Angeles has taught him about faith, compassion, and the enduring power of kinship. In his first book, Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion, Gregory Boyle introduced us to Homeboy Industries, the largest gang-intervention program in the world. Critics hailed that book as an “astounding literary and spiritual feat” (Publishers Weekly) that is “destined to become a classic of both urban reportage and contemporary spirituality” (Los Angeles Times). Now, after the successful expansion of Homeboy Industries, Boyle returns with Barking to the Choir to reveal how compassion is transforming the lives of gang members. In a nation deeply divided and plagued by poverty and violence, Barking to the Choir offers a snapshot into the challenges and joys of life on the margins. Sergio, arrested at age nine, in a gang by age twelve, and serving time shortly thereafter, now works with the substance-abuse team at Homeboy to help others find sobriety. Jamal, abandoned by his family when he tried to attend school at age seven, gradually finds forgiveness for his schizophrenic mother. New father Cuco, who never knew his own dad, thinks of a daily adventure on which to take his four-year-old son. These former gang members uplift the soul and reveal how bright life can be when filled with unconditional love and kindness. This book is guaranteed to shake up our ideas about God and about people with a glimpse at a world defined by more compassion and fewer barriers. Gently and humorously, Barking to the Choir invites us to find kinship with one another and re-convinces us all of our own goodness.
The Loved Dog is Tamar Geller's revolutionary guide to effective dog-training using the gentlest of methods. Tamar, whose clients include Oprah Winfrey, Ben Affleck and Goldie Hawn, teaches a groundbreaking socialisation technique for training dogs. By strengthening the bond between dog and owner, dogs begin to enjoy listening to commands with no need for aggressive training aids such as verbal or physical reprimands. Using this technique, The Loved Dog shows you how to child-proof your dog and teach him good behaviour. Tamar's amazing methods have swept across America, changing the way owners train and relate to their canine friends. Tamar believes that loving your dog is the key to its training. In The Loved Dog she shows you how to build this relationship.
Back to Reason is a very short book about a very small town. A hometown. People in Reason still mark a contract by shaking hands. They still turn out for things like high school football games and band concerts. People in Reason arent crazy from the traffic or the noise or the crowding. Crazy people in Reason are just crazy. But theyre OUR crazy people, and we like them that way. Some stories in Back to Reason are belly-laugh funny; others will make you sigh. They all will make you wish that, at the end of the day, you were going hometo Reason.
The Dogs, Barking is the story of a boy growing up on the Mexican border in Texas who, as he grows into a man, battles with the demons his upbringing has instilled in him. First, he must navigate the wild-eyed, rebellious temptations of university life in the sixties and then the raw power of the concrete jungle of New York as he desperately pursues an acting career he hopes will quiet the fiends that torment him. To his astonishment, he finds the answer in the home he had abandoned and the lonely howl of the dogs that once serenaded him to sleep.
There are many good reasons not to get a dog. Sensible and rational people willingly present them in excruciating detail. But finally, you resist no more and make the decision. This is rarely a spontaneous action in our western urban societies, but rather the end of a cumbersome study of dog books, pet shops, internet pages and parks, where everybody seems so pleased with the joyous Daxhounds, their agile Jack Russels, and their devoted Collies. We know of many who have emerged through that process, turning every stone in the examination. The toughest resistance usually fails when, after an unsuccessful deviation, the family has bought a turtle, an Egyptian rat or a long eared rabbit. When these animals have escaped from their cage into the bathroom ventilator, never to return or fallen prey to a fox, when left alone in the wild, you realise that it’s time for a real pet, a beast that needs a strangler and a leather lead. This is when the Dog appears as the ideal compromise between a horse and a hamster. The Dog fulfils endless needs and functions. It keeps the loner company, instils courage in the fearful, finds trails for the hunter, creates chaos for the pedant, forges friendship with the mob victim, adds frivolity to the serious, esteem to the despised, beauty to the plain, direction to the one-eyed, occupation to the unemployed, youth to the ageing, vigour to the gouty, status to the poor, power to the oppressed. The Dog’s main function is nevertheless that it reconnects me with nature, at the moment I believed I had lost the feeling for the original. It links me with my Atavus. The Dog is the last cry from the wild and in the following essays, I hope you will follow me on that journey.
Englishness is an ancient and powerful concept, but no one seems sure exactly what it means in the twenty-first century. In exploring our national identity, Tony Thorne has compiled a fascinating compendium of the hundred words and phrases that have become the cornerstones of modern English, and have been used - sometimes deliberately, but often inadvertently - to stake out our common ground, to define what makes us essentially English, and thus different from those beastly foreigners who lurk just off our shores.
In Indigenous North American film Native Americans tell their own stories and thereby challenge a range of political and historical contradictions, including egregious misrepresentations by Hollywood. Although Indians in film have long been studied, especially as characters in Hollywood westerns, Indian film itself has received relatively little scholarly attention. In Imagic Moments Lee Schweninger offers a much-needed corrective, examining films in which the major inspiration, the source material, and the acting are essentially Native. Schweninger looks at a selection of mostly narrative fiction films from the United States and Canada and places them in historical and generic contexts. Exploring films such as Powwow Highway, Smoke Signals, and Skins, he argues that in and of themselves these films constitute and in fact emphatically demonstrate forms of resistance and stories of survival as they talk back to Hollywood. Self-representation itself can be seen as a valid form of resistance and as an aspect of a cinema of sovereignty in which the Indigenous peoples represented are the same people who engage in the filming and who control the camera. Despite their low budgets and often nonprofessional acting, Indigenous films succeed in being all the more engaging in their own right and are indicative of the complexity, vibrancy, and survival of myriad contemporary Native cultures.