Free Ebook Offer: The Story of America: Discovery - Article 2
Just think. If the Vikings had made just that little extra effort to stay on in America when they first arrived just over 1000 years ago then the modern history of not only North America but the whole continent might have started 500 years earlier in 992AD rather than 1492AD.
And that would have meant there would be an extra 500 years of this enthalling history to read; and an extra 500 years of the American dream to follow.
They couldn't have been too far from staying - after all they had already started permanent settlements on both Iceland and Greenland and surely North America must have seemed a pretty attractive proposition compared to either of those cold, inhospitable, barren lands.
Even their own records, their sagas, are full of vivid descriptions of the amazing landscapes across what is nowadays New England, with the sandy beaches, wooded hills and fast-flowing torrents; not to mention the plentiful supplies of salmon, game and wild grapes and the endless forests of timber. And don't forget these were the very same tough, formidable warriors who had already conquered much of England, Ireland and northern France. They were certainly no weaklings!
No, something must have put them off big time, because although both their sagas and modern archaeology confirm that they definitely DID reach North America, by 1002AD, a mere 10 years after their first sighting of the previously unknown land, they had loaded their longships with their possesions and livestock and headed back to Greenland for the last time.
Surely the distance didn't put them off, and the climate would have been much kinder than they were accustomed too in Greenland, Iceland or their native Scandinavia, and we know they had plenty of food and resources.
No, it must have been the Skraelings (the Viking name for the natives - meaning savages) who ended their dream. The very same AmerIndians who were to give the English settlers such a torrid time over 600 years later and who all but spelt the end of English colonization of North America too. It was the Skraelings who forced them to retreat and even put them off any further attempts to return to the great lands to the west.
The Vikings were just too few in numbers and too unprepared to tackle such a ferocious onslaught. They retreated wisely, reasoning that they would be better off as live Vikngs on freezing Greenland than dead Vikings in warm and pleasant America.
Things might have been different, but then..... .
This excerpt is from Discovery - The Story of America by Anthony Treasure. This book is already published in the UK (listed on Amazon.co.uk) and is due to be published in the US at a later date. For now it is published as an ebook and as a SPECIAL INTRODUCTORY OFFER Discovery Part One is available to download COMPLETELY FREE OF CHARGE. Three further titles - Discovery Part Two, Colonization Part One and Colonization Part Two are also out as ebooks and can be bought and downloaded from the website. To claim your free ebook today simply visit www.farawaybooks.com">http://www.farawaybooks.com
Since 2009 VIDA has tracked the review coverage of major print publications to analyze how many women and gender minorities are represented.
For the 2017 VIDA Count, they looked at 15 major print publications over the course of the year. Even though many, if not all of the publications also have an online presence, they only counted the reviews in the print versions because it is "too easy to confine women, gender minorities, and other marginalized writers to cost-effective web platforms, which frequently pay differently (or don't pay at all), compared to their print counterparts."
Of the 15 publications, only 2 published 50% or more women writers: Granta (53.5%) and Poetry (50%).
Five had women representing between 40% and 49.9% of their total publication: Harper's, The New York Times Book Review, The New Republic, The Paris Review and Tin House.
The majority, 8 out of 15 publications, failed to publish enough women writers to make up even 40% of their publication's run in 2017: Boston Review, London Review of Books, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The Nation, The Threepenny Review, and The Times Literary Supplement.
The New York Review of Books had the most pronounced gender disparity with only 23% of published writers who are women but it was close to gender parity in terms of contributors, with 47% women.
Renowned surgeon and best-selling author Atul Gawande will lead a major new company aimed at reducing health-care costs, a joint venture by Amazon, JPMorgan Chase and Berkshire Hathaway.
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Gawande, a Harvard physician and writer for the New Yorker magazine, has written on issues at the core of American health care, including why it is so expensive and how to improve end-of-life care. He will take charge July 9.
A Massachusetts Institute of Technology investigation has cleared author and creative writing professor Junot Díaz to return to the classroom for the fall semester. The Associated Press reported that "the inquiry into Díaz's actions toward female students and staff yielded no information that would lead to restrictions on Díaz's role as a faculty member at the university in Cambridge."
Oxford University Press is asking members of the public to submit local words, phrases and expressions from around the world for inclusion in the Oxford English Dictionary:
"Whether you're in Manchester, Mumbai, Manila, or Massachusetts, the OED would like to hear from you. Please use the form below to tell us about the words and expressions which are distinctive to where you live or where you are from. We're looking forward to reading your suggestions."
After writing novels on artificial intelligence, neuroscience and genetics, Powers' has turned to trees with The Overstory. While on a hike through the Great Smoky Mountains, he talks to The Guardian about environmentalism and not having children.
Seattle officials repealed a corporate "head tax" on Tuesday "that they had wholeheartedly endorsed just a month ago, delivering a win for the measure's biggest opponent--Amazon--and offering a warning to cities bidding for the retailer's second headquarters that the company would go to the limit to get its way," the New York Times reported. The tax would have raised about $50 million a year to help the homeless and fund affordable housing projects in a city where the homeless population is the third largest in the country, after New York City and Los Angeles.
Amazon has come under fire for removing reviews from its online book listings, with some customers having had all their reviews removed or being blocked from posting further reviews on Amazon.
Authors, bloggers and publishers have criticized the development, with many sharing their frustration through the #giveourreviewsback hashtag. Amazon has blamed temporary "technical issues".
Mike McCormack has won the International Dublin literary award for his novel Solar Bones
The judges hailed it as "formally ambitious, stylistically dauntless and linguistically spirited". It is written in a single sentence that flows over 270-odd pages, and spans a single day: All Souls' Day, when, according to superstition, the dead can return to the land of the living. Solar Bones
is narrated by Marcus Conway husband, father, civil engineer, a man gripped by "a crying sense of loneliness for my family" and a ghost, a factor that, for McCormack, explains the experimental form. ("A ghost would have no business with a full stop," he once argued. "It might fatally falter and dissipate.")
In an extensive article in the New York Times, John Kidd reports on "The Strange Case of the Missing Joyce Scholar."
Two decades ago, a renowned professor promised to produce a flawless version of one of the 20th century's most celebrated novels: "Ulysses." Then he disappeared...
Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has been awarded the 2018 PEN Pinter prize. She was hailed by Harold Pinter's widow, the biographer Antonia Fraser, as a writer who embodies "those qualities of courage and outspokenness which Harold much admired".