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The history of the United States is rich in religious tolerance and diversity. Here are several sources that help to understand the plethora of faith persuasions active today throughout the U.S. and the world and the push to preserve their unique traditions and heritage.

 

The Religions Book

Religious literacy : what every American needs to know / Stephen Prothero

Religions of the world : the illustrated guide to origins, beliefs, traditions & festivals

Religions of the World (DVD)

Cultural Literacy for Religion (DVD)

Religions/ Carl Wilkerson

Illustrated dictionary of religions : rituals, beliefs, and practices from around the world

A History of God: The 4000 year quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam

A History of God: The 4000 year quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam (DVD)

A None's Story: Searching for Meaning Inside Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism and Islam

Children of Abraham: Judaism, Christianity, Islam

Religious Holidays and Calendars: an Encyclopedia

How Different Religions View Death and Afterlife

The Amish / Donald B. Kraybill, Karen M. Johnson-Weiner, and Steven M. Nolt

The Amish [videodisc] / American Experience / Donald B. Kraybill, Karen M. Johnson-Weiner, and Steven M. Nolt

The Amish [videodisc] : how they survive / Buller Films LLC

Complete Idiot's Guide to Christianity

The Christians [videodisc] / written and presented by Bamber Gascoigne ; a Granada Television production

Great World Religions: Christianity (sound recording)

Buddhism: The Illustrated Guide

Buddhism: Origin, Beliefs, Practices, Holy Texts, Sacred Places

Great World Religions: Buddhism (sound recording)

Confucianism and Taoism (videorecording)

Essential Hinduism

Contemporary Hinduism: Ritual, Culture and Practice

Complete Idiot's Guide to Hinduism

Great World Religions: Hinduism (sound recording)

India : a sacred geography / Diana L. Eck

For the love of being Jewish : an A-to-Z primer for bubbies, mensches, meshugas, tzaddiks, and yentas / written by Steven Stark Lowenstein ; illustrated and designed by Mark Anderson

The everything Judaism book : a complete primer to the Jewish faith--from holidays and rituals to traditions and culture / by Richard D. Bank

Judaism / by Martha Morrison, Stephen F. Brown

Introduction to Judaism [videodisc] / Shai Cherry

Great World Religions: Judaism (sound recording)

Islam and the future of tolerance : a dialogue / Sam Harris, Maajid Nawaz

Islam: What Non-Muslims Need to Know/ John Kaltner

Decoding the Past: The Secrets of the Koran (DVD)

Great World Religions: Islam (sound recording)

It's dangerous to believe : religious freedom and its enemies / Mary Eberstadt

Religious Tolerance [Web site]

Pluralism Project [Web site]

 

 

This is the story of the political battles that have taken place in the court of Vladimir Putin since his rise to power, and a chronicle of friendship and hatred between the Russian leader and his foreign partners and opponents.

The raging question in the world today is who is the real Vladimir Putin and what are his intentions. Karen Dawisha's brilliant work provides an answer, describing how Putin got to power, the cabal he brought with him, the billions they have looted, and his plan to restore the Greater Russia.

The Spur Awards are annual literary prizes awarded by the Western Writers of America (WWA). The Spur Awards honor writers for distinguished writing about the American West. The Spur awards began in 1953, the same year the WWA was founded.

Historical Fiction Winner

Biography

National Poetry Month Biographies

Celebrate National Poetry Month by getting to know more about the lives of some of our greatest poets:
 

Longfellow: a rediscovered life by Charles C. Calhoun

 

 

Yeats's ghosts: the secret life of W.B. Yeats by Brenda Maddox

 

 

 

 

Dylan Thomas: a new life by Andrew Lycett

 

 

 

 

From noon to starry night: a life of Walt Whitman by Philip Callow

 

 

 

 

Rough magic: a biography of Sylvia Plath by Paul Alexander

 

Angela's ashes : a memoir by Frank McCourt

Carlos Eire's National Book Award-winning memoir of his childhood in 1950s Havana and the overnight upheaval of his world in January 1959, when the Batista government was toppled.

April is Cultural Diversity Month! Check out one of the following YA titles to discover a different culture, or perhaps find a reflection of your own experiences.

Culture: Native American

Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

A big dose of lucky by Marthe Jocelyn

Culture: Canadian Aboriginal

Malou has just turned sixteen—hardly old enough to be out in the world on her own—and all she knows for sure is that she’s mixed-race and that she was left at an orphanage as a newborn. Beyond that, it’s a mystery—a mystery that takes her to the little town of Parry Sound, where she finds lots of young brown faces like hers. Are these her relatives, and why doesn’t anyone want to talk about it?

The bitter side of sweet by Tara Sullivan

Culture: Ivorian (Ivory Coast)

They only wanted to make some money during the dry season to help their impoverished family; instead they were tricked into forced labor on a plantation in the Ivory Coast. For two years what has mattered are the number of cacao pods Amadou and his younger brother, Seydou, can chop down in a day. Then Khadija comes, the first girl who has ever come to camp, and she’s a wild thing. She fights, but the bosses break her. Now the three band together as family and try just once more to escape.

Explains the meaning of Japanese culture which is found in eight traditional handicrafts and provides instructions for creating them. Includes a list of materials needed.

Presents step-by-step instructions for creating nine handicraft projects inspired by Indian art, including ankle bells, a henna key chain, and a Diwali bowl.

Presents step-by-step directions for drawing the national flag, a castle, a stork, and other sights and symbols of Germany.

April is Cultural Diversity Month. Take a look at the biographies below and explore the different cultural backgrounds of various historical figures.

The life of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is traced from birth and childhood to his death. 

Explore the life of the United State's first Hispanic U.S Supreme Court Justice. 

Gandhi by Juhi Saklani

A biography of Mahatma Gandhi, the Indian political and spiritual leader who led his country to freedom from British rule through his policy of nonviolent resistance.

Curious about why Denmark has topped lists as the world's happiest country? Explore the vibrant culture of this northern land and find out.

How is it that these 5.6 million Danes are so content when they live in a country that is dark and cold nine months of the year and where income taxes are at almost 60 percent? At a time when talk across the Western world is focused on unemployment woes, government overreach, and anti-taxation lobbies, our Danish counterparts seem to breathe a healthier and fresher air. Interweaving anecdotes and research, Malene Rydahl explores how the values of trust, education, and a healthy work-life balance with  purpose—to name just a few—contribute to a “happy” population.

When she was given the opportunity of a new life in rural Jutland, journalist and archetypal Londoner Helen Russell discovered a startling statistic: the happiest place on earth is Denmark, a land often thought of by foreigners as consisting entirely of long dark winters, cured herring, Lego and pastries. What is the secret to their success? Are happy Danes born, or made? Helen gives herself a year to uncover the formula for Danish happiness. The Year of Living Danishly is a funny, poignant record of a journey that shows us where the Danes get it right, where they get it wrong, and how we might just benefit from living a little more Danishly ourselves.

The centuries-old Danish tradition of Hygge (pronounced "hue-gah") is a special custom of emotional warmth, slowness, and appreciation, and it is becoming increasingly familiar to an international audience. To hygge means to enjoy the good things in life with good people.

Learn about real life poets and their work. The stories included below are roughly listed by increasing depth and complexity. While these books are located in the Children's Department, there is a strong possibility that they may appeal to a wider audience.

Maya Angelou by Lisbeth Kaiser

Offers an illustrated telling of the life of Maya Angelou that focuses on how she overcame childhood trauma and realized her dream and became one of the world's most beloved writers and speakers.

Presents the life and work of the twentieth-century American writer, focusing on his fascination with words from a young age and highlighting his poetry's inspirational properties.

A beautiful story that folds poetry and history into recent events, resurrecting the work of Misuzu Kaneko and bringing the gentle grace of her poems to a new generation.

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