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Ron Briley


  • Originally published 07/15/2013

    Ron Briley: Review of "Beyond Home Plate: Jackie Robinson on Life After Baseball," edited by Michael Long

    The courage and athletic ability demonstrated by Jackie Robinson in breaking Major League Baseball’s color line in 1947 and making the Brooklyn Dodgers a dominant National League club during the 1950s resulted in the ballplayer’s induction into the pantheon of baseball immortals at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. Robinson’s career after he retired from the sport following the 1956 season is, however, less well known, but Robinson’s decision to take an active role in the civil rights movement provides ample proof that the courage displayed on the playing field carried over into the struggle for a democratic nation freed from the scourge of racial discrimination and segregation.

  • Originally published 05/19/2013

    Ron Briley: Review of David Simonelli's "Working Class Heroes: Rock Music and British Society in the 1960s and 1970s" (Lexington Books, 2013)

    Ron Briley reviews books for the History News Network and is a history teacher and an assistant headmaster at Sandia Preparatory School, Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is the author of "The Politics of Baseball: Essays on the Pastime and Power at Home and Abroad."For anyone coming of age in the 1960s and 1970s, Working Class Heroes will evoke the rock soundtrack of youthful rebellion. But unlike the many memoirs by musicians which tend to dominate rock music literature, awash with accounts of sex and drugs, David Simonelli, associate professor of history at Youngstown State University, employs the British rock scene from the Beatles to the Sex Pistols to make important observations on the politics, economics, and social class attitudes of Britain during the 1960s and 1970s.

  • Originally published 04/01/2013

    Ron Briley: Review of David W. Noble's "Debating the End of History" (Minnesota, 2012)

    Ron Briley reviews books for the History News Network and is a history teacher and an assistant headmaster at Sandia Preparatory School, Albuquerque, New Mexico.In Debating the End of History, distinguished scholar David W. Noble, professor emeritus of American studies at the University of Minnesota, asks difficult but essential questions which must be addressed if we are to forge a sustainable future in the age of climate change. Noble challenges the conventional wisdom of perpetual economic growth upon which bourgeois culture is founded. He asks how it is possible to have continuous growth within a finite earth. In seeking an answer to this inquiry, Noble examines the evolution of his academic career within the historical and cultural context of a growing discourse on the feasibility of continuous economic growth.

  • Originally published 03/25/2013

    Ron Briley: Review of Woody Guthrie's "House of Earth: A Novel" (Infinitum, 2013)

    Ron Briley reviews books for the History News Network and is a history teacher and an assistant headmaster at Sandia Preparatory School, Albuquerque, New Mexico.House of Earth is a novel written in 1947 by folksinger and political activist Woody Guthrie.  Although Guthrie wrote what many scholars describe as two autobiographical novels, Bound for Glory (1943) and Seeds of Man (published in 1972 five years after Guthrie’s death), House of Earth remained unpublished until the seemingly ubiquitous Rice University historian Douglas Brinkley discovered the manuscript and arranged for its publication under actor Johnny Depp's new Infinitum label with HarperCollins.

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