Up to Snuff #126 Book List Alliterative Verse (Poetry)

Up to Snuff #126 Book list Alliterative Verse (Poetry)

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu


William Langland-Allegorical Narrative Poem

Piers Plowman


Chaucer-Canterbury Tales

Sir Gawain and The Green Knight



Alliterative Morte Arthure

St. Erkenwald

The Raven Edgar Allan Poe


The Rime of Ancient Mariner  Samuel Taylor

The Age of Anxiety W.H. Auden

The Three Dead Kings

Mum and the Sothsegger

Death be not proud

Songs for the Philologists

Sonnet 5

Sir Galahad

Up to Snuff #125: Book list literature, film and online

Up to Snuff #125:  Book list literature, film and online

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

The Poetry Handbook, John Lennard, OUP, 2005

Plato’s Republic

Tacit Learning

(Shakespearean references)


Edmund Spenser

Thomas Watson

Michael Drayton

Barnabe Barnes

Richard Linches

Sir Philip Sidney

Wild Strawberries (Film)

Kennedy, John, “A Confederacy of Dunces,” Louisiana State University Press, 1980, p. 1

Poe, Edgar Allan, “Tales of Mystery and Imagination,

Poe, Edgar Allan, “Fifty Stories for Boys,”

“The Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe.”

Quotidian Writer (online/Youtube)

The Bell Jar, Sylvia Plath

The Long Winter

Robinson Cruscoe, Daniel Defoe

Agatha Christie

Fiddler on the Roof

Brave New World

Handmaids Tale



Design Thinking Odyssey

Alice Walker

Grapes of Wrath

A Thousand Splendid Suns

Things Fall Apart

East of Eden

Memoirs of a Geisha

Windup girl

Willa Cather-My Antonia

Challenger Deep, Neal Shusterman

Ha Jin

John Updike

Up to Snuff #124: Book list some admired

Up to Snuff #124:  Book list some admired

by, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

  • Plato
  • Edgar Allan Poe
  • William Shakespeare
  • Charles Dickens
  • Samuel Beckett
  • Somerset Maugham
  • Gustave Flaubert
  • Martin Luther King Jr.
  • Mahatma Gandhi
  • Karl Marx
  • Ha Jin
  • OSHO
  • Ryszard Kapuscinski
  • Ernest Hemingway
  • Design Thinking
  • James Baldwin
  • O. Wilson
  • Cultural Branding examples: (Arabian Nights, Wild Irish Rose, Don Quixote, Daphne DuMaurier)
  • Chaucer
  • Tertiary Sources and Resources
  • New York Times Op-Ed Writer
  • Frithjof Bergmann
  • Confucius
  • John Updike
  • Jack A. Hobbs & Robert L. Duncan
  • Pablo Neruda
  • Rumi
  • Thich Nat Hanh
  • Dalai Lama
  • Oscar Wilde
  • Deepak Chopra
  • Alice Walker
  • Voltaire
  • Balzac
  • Maupassant
  • Lord David Cecil
  • Byron
  • Dylan Thomas
  • Hebrew
  • Christian
  • Jane Austen
  • Evelyn Waugh
  • Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  • Leo Tolstoy
  • Nikolai Gogol
  • Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
  • Breton
  • Ionesco
  • Sartre
  • Kant
  • Hegel
  • Franz Kafka
  • Franz Fanon
  • Albert Camus
  • Mary Wollencraft Shelly
  • Emily Bronte
  • Daniel Keyes
  • Zora Neale Hurston
  • Anais Nin
  • Maya Angelou
  • Hans Christian Andersen
  • S. Lewis
  • Carlos Casteneda
  • Gita
  • Koran
  • Andrew Loomis
  • Baudelaire
  • Nietzsche
  • Octavio Paz
  • Henry Miller
  • Danielle Steele
  • Hermann Hesse
  • Keats
  • Chinua Achebe
  • Francis Bebey
  • Mongo Beti
  • Audre Lorde
  • August Wilson
  • TS Eliot
  • Chekov
  • Noam Chomsky
  • Martin Heidegger
  • Aristotle
  • Euripides
  • Falun Gong
  • Jose Saramago
  • Rosario
  • J Spiro
  • Hugo von Hofmannsthal
  • Mathew Arnold
  • Yusef Komunyakaa
  • Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
  • Richard Powers
  • Ngugi wa Thiong’o
  • Michel Butor
  • Linda Hogan
  • Larry Woiwode
  • Jayne Anne Phillips
  • Vergil
  • Twentieth-Century British Drama, Patricia Marks
  • Spanish Drama since 1600’s Frank Casa
  • Sven Rossel Scandinavian Poetry
  • Russian Poetry Mitzi, Brunsdale
  • Renaissance Drama Jean-Pierre Barricelli
  • William Haggard
  • Leon Lewis Native America Short Fiction
  • Nobuko Toyosawa
  • Tulsidas
  • Jean-Marie Morel
  • Bharatchandra Raj
  • Margaret B. Wan
  • Paul Andersen
  • Malik B. Asas
  • Maram Epstein
  • David W. Burchmore
  • Juliet Mullins
  • John Tzetles
  • Giovanni Giovaiano Pontano
  • Abril Fazl
  • Observation & Experiment Paul R. Rosenbaum
  • Ingenius Peter Gluckman
  • John Danaber



Book Review: “New Work, New Culture” By Frithjof Bergmann

Book Review:  “New Work, New Culture” By, Frithjof Bergmann

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

Controversial and highly relevant Author Frithjof Bergmann just released his seminal book “New Work, New Culture” which was translated from German.  Written in a very special, highly descriptive language where for example, the world is traveling full speed in a locomotive without its conductor.  Bergmann ignites his reader with the details about his role in early labor movement initiatives.  Bergmann partnered with a German university and many mega-companies to solve problems around the globe involving work.  His first book on the subject was written in regards to freedom, titled “On Being Free,” and includes some of his early insights about work.  PhD., and former Professor of Philosophy and Existentialism has detailed in “New Work, New Culture” a variety of innovative ideas meant to evolve the world’s most developing regions.   Bergmann presented the ideas of “High Tech Self Providing (HTSP),” mobile factories, dome architecture, and permaculture to name a few.  Bergmann cited the philosopher Hobbs and his work on the subject of morality.  In this highly valuable work, Bergmann proposed via a philosophical lens radical, however rational questions about the muscle and purpose of man and as Gandhi also proposed, doing what you really, really want to do.  The book’s byline is “work we want and a culture that strengthens us.” Bergmann questions whether or not work should exist for man, not man for work. The book “New Work, New Culture,” was published on “Zero Books,” a publisher that appears to include many other notable, if not radical, authors relating to culture, society and politics and is now available on Amazon.com.

Up to Snuff #104: Harvard Press Book List #1

Up to Snuff #104:  Harvard Press Book List #1

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

Proceeding the Harvard Celtic Colloquium 38-2018 Celeste Andrews

Muslims and US Politics Today Mohammad Hassan Khalil

Adams Family Correspondence Hobson Woodward

Famine Relief in War Logged China Pierre Fuller

Latina Vote

Powers of the Real Cinema Gender & Emotion in Interview with Japan Diane Wei Lewis

Imaginative Mapping Nobuko Toyosawa

Regional Literature and Transmission of Culture Margaret B. Wan

The Paradox of Being Paul Andersen

Feeling the Past in Seventeenth Century China Xiaoqiao Ling

The Epic of Ram Tulsidas

The Praise of Anradi Vol. 2 Bharatchandra Raj

Theory of Gardens Jean-Marie Morel

The End of Middle East History and Other Conjectures

Al-Muwatta, The Royal, Moroccan Edition Malik B. Asas

Orthodox Passions  Maram Epstein

The History of Kings of Britain David W. Burchmore

Old English Lives of Saints  Julliet Mullins

Allegories of the Odyssey John Tzetles

The Virtues and Vices of Speech Giovanni Giovaiano Pontano

Lives of Milanese Tyrants  Pier Candido Decembrio

The History of Akbar Abril Fazl

Pious Fashion Elizabeth Bucer

Finding  Time Heather Bushey

Vatican 1 John O’Malley

Observation & Experiment Paul R. Rosenbaum

Living History of Rome J.C. Yardley

Appian Roman History Brian McGing

Canonical Mires

The Splendors and Miseries Confessions Zolas Monly

Caliphate of Man  Andrew F. March

Takys Revolt Vincent Brown

Battling Bella Leandra Ruth Zarnow

Magic and the Dignity of Man Brian P. Copenhover

Unbound Heather Bonsley

Ingenius Peter Gluckman

The Missing Course David Goobler

Contradiction and Utopia  John Danaber

Neptune’s Laboratory Antony Adler

Marxism influenced the labor movement and gave rise to labor unions

Marxism influenced the labor movement and gave rise to labor unions

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

Karl Marx, German Philosopher (5 May 1818-14 March 1883) offered in “Das Kapital 1,2,3” and “The Communist Manifesto,” an economic worldview via the use of political, social and economic “critique.” “Critique” by Marx became a means of observation and questioning, in this case, social questions.  The main crux of Marx’s argument had to do with how class struggles elicit social change and inevitably overthrows capitalism and subsequently the ruling class or “bourgeoisie.”  Marx’s “ideological writings” such as “Das Kapital 1,2, & 3” and “The Communist Manifesto” propagandize, lead to movements, frame  and provide ideas from which a movement can evolve “ideologically.”  Key Marx concepts like the use of the “left” or Communism or Socialist or capitalism or labor or class struggle or bourgeoisie or Proletariat were incendiary and gave rise to militancy.  The disciples were those who adopted Communism or Socialism and became the key drivers of labor movements that formed unions in the twentieth century.    Around the turn of the twentieth century, Marxist ideas influenced the goals of the labor movement and gave rise to its subsequent labor unions by way of its militant minority.

The bourgeoisie according to Marx’s “The Communist Manifesto” are “untenable and destined to fall.”  The companion and enabler of the bourgeoisie  was the “Proletariat,” whose nomenclature suggests an obedience word “pro-let,” or a professional renter or personage for hire “pro-let,” where ..tariat could suggest torn apparel or tare suggestive of weight or worth weight in gold or a professional renter, who is without property.  Needless to say, the word is infused with working-class description and suggestive of this personage or group who lives so far as his self- sale permits it.  “The Communist Manifesto,” details it, “Development of a class of laborers who live only so long as they find work and who find work only so long as their labor increases capital.” The last lines in “The Communist Manifesto” claim that “The Proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains.  Working men of all countries unite!”  Marx’s audience, therefore, became the working class and his mission in their regards was to overthrow diverse established regimes of ruling class in favor of a Socialist model which was meant to replace capitalism. Who became this ignited group of organizers was thought to emanate from The Communist Party in search of working-class revolutions or Socialists who were also meant to replace capitalists.

According to Micah Uetricht, in her seminal article which details the rise of the unions, “U.S. Union Revitalization and the Missing “Militant Minority,”” in the “Labor Studies Journal,” “Militant minorities were radical leftists with a commitment to militant unionism and were the hardest fighters, dedicated organizers, and built union cultures of solidarity.” Within the context of the Great Depression, New Deal Era, World War II, the Bolsheviks, the Civil Rights Movement and post emancipation-activism during this period of the 20th century was strong, forceful, successful and enduring.  According to Uetricht, unions during this period were building “worker power,” and during the “60’s and 70’s public sector workers walked off jobs in mass illegal strikes.”  Unions were beginning to map a movement.  They used campaign strategies and paid for candidates to represent workers.  Uetricht states that unions “made political fixes using politicians for minimum wage hikes.”  It was a period where employment relations were stirred and workers connected to management.  According to Anam Ullah, there were “worldwide labor problems” and “those arguing from a radical perspective draw principally from the work of Karl Marx.” (Ullah, pg. 36) Archer shared this point and cited in his paper on “The State and its Unions,” “(His) approach can be seen as an early example of the new institutionalism then emerging as a response or development of neo-Marxian class theories.” (Archer, 201)

Socialists were thought to look at abolition in “The Communist Manifesto,” and improve conditions for all, even the most favored. (Marx, 52) Brewer goes on to describe how “’collective action’ achieves a genuine socialist society.” (Brewer, 93) Brewer describes the evolution of socialism “Slavery was just in a slave society and unjust in a capitalist society.  Exploitation is just in a capitalist society, but unjust in a socialist society.” (Brewer, 92) People began to utilize “’Social Science’ according to Brewer as a process by which to see inequality as exploitive.”(Brewer, 91)  Social science was used for small experiments and to write social laws and was thought to be miraculous.  Unions were dreaming of experimental realization of social utopias as was suggested by Marx’s “The Communist Manifesto.”

Unions were trying to address capitalism wrote Brewer, where capitalism, “gets something for nothing or much for little, at the expense of others.” (Brewer, 92)  Brewer wrote about “forced domination or unequal power as the precondition of and consequence of exploitation which was a feature of advanced capitalism.” (Brewer, 91) Pamphlets were distributed by Marx and others and were highlighted in “The Communist Manifesto” as “the enlightenment of the working class.” (Marx, 53) Brewer stated that “collective action eliminates exploitation.” (Brewer, 92)  “Early institutional relations evolved and conditioned union identity, which was in the end the blue print for advancing interests through the unions.”(Gall, 146) Actions like worker representation, resistance to management and collective bargaining preserved jobs and enabled change.  Marx described a torn aristocracy in “The Communist Manifesto,” and “how aristocracy was meant to lose sight of its own interests and adopt the interests of the working class.”

A consequence of the labor unions that Marx may have inspired, were according to (Jun Chen, et al., 775) that “we found that labor unionization is negatively associated with stock price crash risk. However, Chen went on to prove in her paper that “labor unions are able to lower the probability of stock price crash risk by reducing managerial risk-taking behaviors.” (Jun  Chen, et al., 775).  Additionally, many labor unions were said to “use political power to improve profits and reduce competition through regulating capture of government agencies and by lobbying for favorable legislation and government contracts and decisions.” (Jared Stanfield, 1101)  Jake Rosenfeld illustrated how “Rod Blagovich signed an executive order granting collective bargaining rights to nearly 50,000 childcare workers after a multiyear lobbying campaign by the SEIU (Service Employees International Union) backed Blagovich’s 2002 Gubernational bid with manpower and financial resources for congressional Democratic  efforts.” (Jake Rosenfeld, 31)  Apparently, to get things passed, unions ascertained how to get leaders on their side.  Legal enactments became imperative when “wages weren’t in keeping with inflation or when the government felt that wages were rising faster than the rate of inflation.” (Williams P. James, 166).  James highlighted how collective bargaining “allowed unions to distort Democracy and public employees had more influence over elected officials than other citizens.”

Marxian theories influenced the direction of the labor movement which led to union organizing in America in the 20th century.  Ideas around class struggle interpreted by Marxist critique as Bourgeoisie and Proletariat illustrated a problematic capitalism destine for social change.  Marxian ideas were said to inspire social change and led a generation to Communism and Socialism.  The particular generation led to Communism and Socialism was thought to form a militant minority who went on to organize unions within the 20th century labor movement.


Archer, Robin. The state and its unions:  Reassessing the antecedents, development and consequences of new deal labor law. Labor History. May 2013, Vol. 54 Issue 2, p201-207. 7p

Brewer, John. Exploitation is the new Marxism of collective action. The Sociological Review, Vol 35(1), Feb, 1987 pp. 84-96, Routledge & Kegan Paul

Chen, Jun; Tong, Jamie Y.; Wang, Wenming; Zang, Feida. The economic consequences of labor unionization:  Evidence from stock price crash risk. Journal of Business Ethics. Jul2019, Vol. 157 Issue 3, p775-796, 22p

Gall, Gregor. Richard Hyman:  An assessment of his industrial relations: A Marxist introduction. Capital & Class. Mar2012, Vol. 36 Issue 1, p135-149. 15p

Marx, Karl. Capital Vol. 1,2 &3 (Das Kapital Vol. 1,2 & 3), Lexington, Kentucky. Stief Books, July 2019

Marx, Karl; Engels, Freidrich. The Communist Manifesto.  Lexington, Kentucky. Brandywine Studio Press. 1888.

Rosenfeld, Jake. What unions no longer do. Cambridge, Massachusetts:  Harvard University Press, 2014. Ebook

Stanfield, Jared; Tumarkin, Robert. Does the political power of nonfinancial stakeholders affect frim values?  Evidence from labor unions. Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, June 2018, v.53 iss.3, pp. 1101-33

Uetricht, Micah; Eidlin, Barry. U.S. union revitalization and the missing “militant minority”. Labor Studies Journal. March2019, Vol.44 Issue 1, p36-59. 24p.

Ullah, Anam.  Is Marxism still valid in industrial relations?. Middle East Journal of Business. Jan 2016, Vol. 11 Issue 1, p31-36. 6p


Up to Snuff #99: Writing as Development

Up to Snuff #99:  Writing as Development

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

Writing can be perhaps best utilized as “development.”  Writing can develop countries or cultures as in the cases of “Arabian Nights,” or “Wild Irish Rose,” that were used to develop the Arabs and Irish respectively.  Writing can be used to develop cultural branding or build the imagination of their readers as with books such as Charlotte Bronte’s “Jane Eyre,” or Emily Bronte’s, “Wuthering Heights.”  Books elicit ideas and personalities form around them.

When making a book list for a reader one notes that she may develop their knowledge, teach them lessons, develop their values, develop their conversation and develop their personality as if by prescription.

Needless to say, when seeking development in general, one may pursue a literary strategy, whether it is to develop a person or a country or a company or a field of knowledge or a campaign.  Should one embark on the development of the arts or of writing itself or economic development for a people, a literary pursuit may be appropriate.  Some of the best developed presidential campaigns began with books.

Things may write into existence.  Another way of looking at development may be looking at the individual development of great fiction.  When writing a great book of fiction one may research words, research language, research setting, document scenes from life experience for liveliness, research, research, research and on and on to write a perfected book by putting all in.  The books result may be a development of the imagination for example and the books start may also be a kind of thorough development of research, ideas and descriptions.

Perhaps how well the book develops a person, place or thing correlates to its longevity or rate of success.  How well was it developed and what did it develop?  Perhaps the writer set out to teach you to be rich?  Perhaps the writer is developing naturalists or passionate types or maturation.

A writer may set out to develop a political party, then develop the political party’s leaders, movements, speeches and campaigns.  Power, in the end, is in development.  One may view it as teachings or wise guide, or a kind of personal triumph that graduates an individual from perhaps complacent to passionate.  One may cultivate beauty or work on big societal ideas and be consciously guided to make improvements.

Based on Harvard’s Press, many Harvard business students generate start-up capital with their initial enterprise as a literary pursuit.  One woman wished to generate capital to end homelessness by documenting it in detail in a literary format to use proceeds to generate power to foster change to oppressive conditions in failed economies.  Books, in the end, can develop both ideas and financing for ideas.

The first rung on a successful ladder may be a literary rung.  One may utilize writing to look through a variety of lenses whether they are social, socio-economic, political, cultural, etc.  By looking through many lenses one may view a variety of perspectives and come to develop historical writing or world view or generate accurate documentation around a world event.  Writing may come to develop an idea about an event that inevitably replaces the event.

If one were to pursue a “power to the people!” strategy, perhaps development goals would serve.  A writer may choose to develop her people’s personalities, their inspiration, knowledgebase, their maturity, their history, their love ability, their culinary.   Literary development becomes a real and tangible “power to the people!”

Stay tuned for forthcoming book “Up to Snuff,” By Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu due out in 2020.

Up to Snuff #98: Cambridge Companion Starter Book List

Up to Snuff #98:  Cambridge Companion Starter Book List

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

“Cambridge Companions  are a series of accessible thought guides written by leading experts offering lively introductions to major writers, artists, philosophers, topics and periods.” (www.cambridge.org)

All books are preceded by the prefix “The Cambridge Companion to:”



D.H. Lawrence

Charles Dickens

Brass Instruments

Travel Writing


Walt Whitman


Nathaniel Hawthorne

Joseph Conrad


Crime Fiction

George Orwell


Henry David Thoreau

Latin American Novel


Creative Writing

Literature and Disability

Latina American Literature

American Gay and Lesbian Literature

Tennessee Williams

Oscar Wilde

The Writings of Julius Caesar

Literature of the American West

Reminiscences of Rose Bonheur

Life and Letters of Hannah E. Pipe

The Principle of Comparative Philogy (Dept. Linguistics)

The Abbot’s House at Westminster

Abeokuta and the Camaroons Mountains (Richard Francis Burton)

Aborigines of Tasmania

Aborigines of Victorias

The Gardeners Dictionary

Abstracts of the Chartularies of the Priory of Monkbretton

L’Astronomie Chinoise

Asa Gray

A Treatise of the Eternal Chemical & Physical Characters of Minerals

Body and Mind (History of Medicine)


A Budget of Paradoxes (Mathematics)


Francis of Assisi

T.S. Eliot

Richard Wright

Sayyid Ahmed Khan


Narrative Theory






Samuel Beckett




W.B. Yeats









Up to Snuff #100: Daddy’s Convalescence Book List 8-12-2019

Daddy’s Convalescence Book List

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu


(Should you read this say a little prayer for my father who fell off a roof and broke himself into many, many pieces and survived, but barely)

The Arabian Nights, Sir Richard F. Burton

The Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx

Capital 1,2,3, Karl Marx

Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte

Don Quixote, Cervantes


Another Country, James Baldwin

Technical and Professional Writing, Kennedy Montgomery


Tales of Mystery and Imagination, Edgar Allan Poe

Sommerset Maugham

The Bonfire of the Vanities, Tom Wolfe

Siddhartha, Hermann Hesse

The Emperor, Kapuscinski

Shadow of the Sun, Kapuscinski

Slaughter House Five, Kurt Vonnegut

The Stranger, Albert Camus

A Thousand Splendid Suns, Khalid Hosseini

A Hundred Years of Solitude, Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky

A Man Without Qualities, Rober Musil

The Brothers Karamazov, Fyodor Dostoyevsky

The Secret Life of Bee’s, Sue Monk Kid

Flowers for Algernon, Daniel Keyes
The Joy Luck Club, Amy Tan

Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe

Waiting for Godot, Samuel Beckett

China in 10 Words, Yu Hua

Chevkov Plays-Uncle Vanya …

The Tale of Genji, Murasaki Shikibu


Right Hand Man to the Champ, Tasha Robinson-White

The Penguin Book of Japanese Short Stories, Jay Rubin

Nigger of Narcissus, joseph Conrad

Roland Barthes

The Rhinoceros, Ionesco

Autobiography of Gandhi

Surrealist Manifesto, Breton

Cities of the Interior, Anais Nin

Henry & June

Tropic of Cancer

Epic of Gilgamesh


Formal Language Theory, Noam Chomsky

Writing Guidelines for Engineering and Science, Michael Alley

The Myth of Sisyphus, Albert Camus


The Kingdom of God in Within You, Tolstoy

Irish Folktales, Keats

Falun Gong Writings

The Art of Responsive Drawing, Nathan Goldstein

Keys to Drawing, Dodson

Up to Snuff #91: Ideological Writing

Up to Snuff #91:  Ideological Writing

By Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

Ideological Writings

  • Does it propagandize?
  • Does it lead to movements?
  • Does it provide ideas from which a movement can evolve?
  • Does it frame?

Eg.  Karl Marx’s “Capital 1,2,& 3”  or “The Communist Manifesto”

How did key Marxist ideas, via “ideological writings,” influence the goals of labor unions around the turn of the twentieth century? Marx’s “ideological writings” such as “Capital 1,2, & 3” and “The Communist Manifesto” propagandize, lead to movements, frame and provide ideas from which a movement can evolve ideologically.  Key Marx concepts like the use of the “left” or communism or socialist or capitalism or labor or class struggle or bourgeoisie or proletariat were incendiary and gave rise to militancy.  The disciples were those who adopted communism or socialist and became the key drivers of labor movements that formed unions in the twentieth century.