Non-Fiction Suggestions for our July, August and September 2011 discussion

Help us pick our next NON-FICTION book for group discussion here. YOU MUST HAVE 5+ POSTS TO CONTRIBUTE IN THIS FORUM!
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Dawn
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Or maybe we need one more suggestion... Due out in June is Stephen Meyer's Signature in the Cell
It would definitely provide a different point of view than the status quo at BT... Anybody interested?
See more at: http://www.signatureinthecell.com/about-the-book.php

The foundations of scientific materialism are in the process of crumbling. In Signature in the Cell, philosopher of science Stephen C. Meyer shows how the digital code in DNA points powerfully to a designing intelligence behind the origin of life. The book will be published on June 23 by HarperOne.

Unlike previous arguments for intelligent design, Signature in the Cell presents a radical and comprehensive new case, revealing the evidence not merely of individual features of biological complexity but rather of a fundamental constituent of the universe: information. That evidence has been mounting exponentially in recent years, known to scientists in specialized fields but largely hidden from public view. A Cambridge University-trained theorist and researcher, director of the Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture, Dr. Meyer is the first to bring the relevant data together into a powerful demonstration of the intelligence that stands outside nature and directs the path life has taken.
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Dexter
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Dawn wrote:Or maybe we need one more suggestion... Due out in June is Stephen Meyer's Signature in the Cell
It would definitely provide a different point of view than the status quo at BT... Anybody interested?
See more at: http://www.signatureinthecell.com/about-the-book.php

Unless I see otherwise, it looks pretty slick but it's just more propaganda starting from a creationist assumption. Here's a quote from one of the author's articles:
DNA stores instructions for life functions in the form of a four-character digital code. Based on our experience, we know that systems possessing such information invariably arise from minds, not material processes. We know that software comes from programmers. We know that information--whether inscribed in hieroglyphics, written in a book, or encoded in a radio signal--always comes from an intelligent source. So the discovery of a digital code in DNA provides compelling evidence of a prior designing intelligence.

So complexity requires a designer. Gee, how original, we've never seen that argument before.
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Chris OConnor
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Dawn, we don't read books promoting creationism or ID or faith. I take pride in the quality of our book selections and think this is a point of differentiation between BookTalk.org and everyone else.
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wilde
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I can't tell if that book is supposed to be about philosophy or science... Is it trying to prove Creationism, or is it trying to prove Creationism is science?
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The Compass of Pleasure by David J. Linden

The Compass Of Pleasure: How Our Brains Make Fatty Foods, Orgasm, Exercise, Marijuana, Generosity, Vodka, Learning, And Gambling Feel So Good
By David J. Linden, hardcover, 240 pages, Viking, list price: $26.95

Unless you're at the kind of cookout where words like amygdala and dopamine get tossed around instead of Frisbees, you're probably not thinking too intently about what's going on in your "medial forebrain pleasure circuit." That might change if you read neuroscientist David J. Linden's The Compass of Pleasure, a hugely entertaining look at why we enjoy the things we enjoy. They're not all vices, either — your brain can be stimulated by sex and drugs, but it also derives pleasure from working out and, believe it or not, paying your taxes. There's hardcore biology here, but it's tempered with personal anecdotes, penetrating observations and quotes from the likes of comedian Mitch Hedberg and Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy. If you're science-phobic, don't worry: Linden is incredibly smart, but comes across as the funny, patient professor you wish you'd had in college.

This synopsis from NPR sounds interesting.
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Chris OConnor
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Wilde, it is an attempt to argue that science supports Intelligent Design.

"Meyer shows how the digital code in DNA points powerfully to a designing intelligence behind the origin of life."
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Chris OConnor
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This thread is being locked. We're going to have to skip a month and start the next Non-Fiction discussion in August instead of July.

Here is why...

I suggested Elie Wiesel's 3 books to be read as a group concurrently. Dawn seconded this and then appeared to have retracted her support based on these books being heavy reading during the summer. Murrill said he/she would probably participate, but nobody else did...and I rarely participate more than a post or two. Administering BookTalk.org unfortunately takes most of my time to the point where I cannot join the actual book discussions. President Camacho added the feedback that he thinks this is a morbid topic and he wouldn't be interested in participating in this particular book discussion. Nobody else left feedback so without a crystal ball I cannot gauge the interest level in Wiesel's books.

Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua was suggested by Wilde and supported by giselle. Nobody else chimed in so we have only 2 people appearing interested in this book.

And then we have 2 more book suggestions with no feedback from anyone else on them.

So this book suggestion thread is being locked and we will have to start fresh. Maybe it is because it is summer and people are busy, but this level of participation is frustrating especially when our forums are so active. I guess people don't want to commit during the summer to participating in an actual book discussion. But we are a book discussion community. :shock:
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