The United States of America
is a federal republic
of 50 states
, a capital district
, and a few other territories. It resides mostly in central North America
. The U.S. has three land borders, two with Canada
and one with Mexico
, and is otherwise bounded by the Pacific Ocean
, the Bering Sea
, the Arctic Ocean
and the Atlantic Ocean
. Of the 50 states, only Alaska
are not contiguous with any other state. The U.S. also has a collection of districts, territories, and possessions
around the world. Each state has a high level of local autonomy according to the system of federalism. The United States traces its national origin to the declaration
by 13 British
colonies in 1776
that they were free and independent states. They were recognized as such by the Treaty of Paris
in 1783. Since then, the nation has grown to become a global superpower
and exerts a high level of economic, political, military, and cultural influence.
The Red Badge of Courage
is a war novel
by American author Stephen Crane
. Taking place during the American Civil War
, the story is about a young private
of the Union Army, Henry Fleming, who flees from the field of battle. Overcome with shame, he longs for a wound—a "red badge of courage"—to counteract his cowardice. When his regiment once again faces the enemy, Henry acts as standard-bearer
. Although Crane was born after the war, and had not at the time experienced battle firsthand, the novel is known for its realism
. He began writing what would become his second novel in 1893, using various contemporary and written accounts (such as those published previously by Century Magazine
) as inspiration. It is believed that he based the fictional battle on that of Chancellorsville
; he may also have interviewed veterans of the 124th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment
, commonly known as the Orange Blossoms. Initially shortened and serialized in newspapers in December 1894
, the novel was published in full in October 1895
. Several of the themes that the story explores are maturation, heroism, cowardice, and the indifference of nature. Adapted several times for the screen, the novel became a bestseller. It has never been out of print, and is now thought to be Crane's most important work and a major American text.
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Selected society biography
John Calvin Coolidge, Jr.
(July 4, 1872 – January 5, 1933), more commonly known as Calvin Coolidge
, was the thirtieth President of the United States
(1923–1929). A Republican
lawyer from Vermont
, Coolidge worked his way up the ladder of Massachusetts
state politics, eventually becoming governor of that state. His actions during the Boston Police Strike
of 1919 thrust him into the national spotlight. Soon after, he was elected as the twenty-ninth Vice President
in 1920 and succeeded to the Presidency upon the death of Warren G. Harding
. Elected in his own right in 1924, he gained a reputation as a small-government conservative
In many ways Coolidge's style of governance was a throwback to the passive presidency of the nineteenth century. He restored public confidence in the White House after the scandals of his predecessor's administration, and left office with considerable popularity. As his biographer later put it, "he embodied the spirit and hopes of the middle class, could interpret their longings and express their opinions. That he did represent the genius of the average is the most convincing proof of his strength."
Anniversaries for December 11
New England cuisine is an American cuisine which originated in the New England region of the United States, and traces its roots to English cuisine. It is characterized by extensive use of seafood and dairy products, which results from its historical reliance on its seaports and fishing industry, as well as extensive dairy farming in inland regions. Many of New England's earliest Puritan settlers were from eastern England, where baking foods was more common than frying, such as pies, beans, and turkey, as was the tradition elsewhere. Two prominent characteristic foodstuffs native to New England are maple syrup and cranberries. The traditional standard starch is potato, though rice has a somewhat increased popularity in modern cooking. New England cuisine is known for limited use of spices aside from ground black pepper, although parsley, garlic, and sage are common, with a few Caribbean additions such as nutmeg. Use of cream is common, due to the reliance on dairy. The favored cooking techniques are stewing, steaming, and baking. Many local ingredients, such as squash, corn and local beans, sunflowers, wild turkey, maple syrup, cranberries and dishes such as cornbread, Johnnycakes and Indian pudding were adopted from Southern New England Algonquian cuisine. Read more...
is the second largest city
in the U.S. state
and the 33rd largest city in the nation. It was founded in 1796 near the mouth of the Cuyahoga River
, and became a manufacturing
center owing to its location at the head of numerous canals
lines. With the decline of heavy manufacturing
, Cleveland's businesses have diversified into the service economy
, including the financial services, insurance
, and healthcare
sectors. Cleveland is also noted for its association with rock music
; the city is home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
As of the 2000 Census, the city proper had a total population of 478,403 and is the center of Greater Cleveland, the largest metropolitan area in Ohio.
In studies conducted by The Economist in 2005, Cleveland and Pittsburgh were ranked as the most livable cities in the United States, and the city was ranked as the best city for business meetings in the continental U.S. The city faces continuing challenges, in particular from concentrated poverty in some neighborhoods and difficulties in the funding and delivery of high-quality public education.
Selected culture biography
(born March 17, 1948) is an American-Canadian writer who has been called the "noir prophet" of the cyberpunk
subgenre of science fiction. Gibson coined the term "cyberspace
" in his short story "Burning Chrome
" and later popularized the concept in his debut novel, Neuromancer
(1984). In envisaging cyberspace, Gibson created an iconography
for the information age
before the ubiquity of the Internet in the 1990s. He is also credited with predicting the rise of reality television
and with establishing the conceptual foundations for the rapid growth of virtual environments such as video games and the Web.
After expanding on Neuromancer with two more novels to complete the dystopic Sprawl trilogy, Gibson became a central figure to an entirely different science fiction subgenre – steampunk – with the 1990 alternate history novel The Difference Engine, written in collaboration with Bruce Sterling. In the 1990s he composed the Bridge trilogy of novels, which focused on sociological observations of near future urban environments and late-stage capitalism. His most recent novels – Pattern Recognition (2003) and Spook Country (2007) – are set in a contemporary world and have put Gibson's work onto mainstream bestseller lists for the first time.
To date, Gibson has written more than twenty short stories, nine novels (one in collaboration), a nonfiction artist's book, and has contributed articles to several major publications and collaborated extensively with performance artists, filmmakers and musicians.
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