4 June 2023

June book recommendation

David Hendy: The BBC: A People's History  

'A fascinating and informative account of the BBC's first 100 years' Daily Telegraph
'A dramatic tale of innovation and determination' Guardian

In 1922, three men - only one of whom had previously heard of 'broadcasting' - founded the BBC. In doing so, Arthur Burrows, Cecil Lewis, and John Reith set out to accomplish something utterly bold: using what had been a weapon of war - Marconi's wireless - to remake culture for the good of humanity.

In The BBC: A People's History, professor and historian David Hendy traces the BBC from its maverick beginnings through war, the creation of television, changing public taste, austerity and massive cultural change. The BBC has constantly evolved, developing from one radio station, to television, then multiple channels and now the competition with the internet and streaming services.

This is a history of a now global institution that defines Britain and created modern broadcasting; it is also a reflection of 100 years of British history.


Zelei Anna: Az elveszett erdő - Hogy vannak a magyar erdők, ki fog vigyázni rájuk és van-e jövőjük?

The planet Earth orbits alone in the dark endless space. There is only one of it, unique and irreproducible. It carries its millions of inhabitants; people, animals, plants, simpler and more complex creatures. Everything does as was predestined, while only man thinks that he is above all living beings...

A drone descends slowly over the forest, scanning the greenery. It distinguishes pine from deciduous, young forest from old, diseased from healthy, sees wild animals with its thermal camera. It can tell you exactly where the deer spend the night, where the wild boars roam, whether last year's acorn crop was good and how big this year's reproduction is...

Man and forest. Admirable creatures, irreplaceable according to our current knowledge. The forest has accompanied Homo sapiens since the beginning, with its help we crossed oceans, won wars, weathered winters, built villages and cities. Our companion from cradle to grave. Man is a smart creature; he knows well how important forests are. But then why are they dying? Why are they in the 24th hour? The forest is not a matter of life and death. It's much more important.

WWF Hungary recommends:

Forests are a reflection of today's environmental crisis. We hear more and more about the effects of accelerating climate change, which are also shaping forests, but we rarely think that the dramatic process caused by humans is only one of the final straws. In fact, we have been destroying, weakening and transforming our forests for centuries with little regard for the consequences. While the forests, even in their degraded state, represent an inestimable value to us.

Many people are worried about forests. A single clearcutting sometimes triggers public protests. In Hungary, beyond the foresters and nature conservationists, few people speak up for the more effective protection of forests at a national level. Anna Zelei is an exception, who speaks up and puts pen to paper. She describes her thoughts with unparalleled dynamism about the history and functioning of forests and the challenges that threaten their existence. She illustrates the collected knowledge with great photos and even poems. We recommend her book to all those who care about the fate of domestic forests, who would like to know more about them and the dangers lurking around them, or who would even do something for them.

Dr. László Gálhidy

WWF Hungary, Forest Program Manager

Ryan Holiday: Ego Is the Enemy  

“While the history books are filled with tales of obsessive visionary geniuses who remade the world in their image with sheer, almost irrational force, I’ve found that history is also made by individuals who fought their egos at every turn, who eschewed the spotlight, and who put their higher goals above their desire for recognition.” —from the prologue

Many of us insist the main impediment to a full, successful life is the outside world. In fact, the most common enemy lies within: our ego. Early in our careers, it impedes learning and the cultivation of talent. With success, it can blind us to our faults and sow future problems. In failure, it magnifies each blow and makes recovery more difficult. At every stage, ego holds us back.

Ego Is the Enemy draws on a vast array of stories and examples, from literature to philosophy to his­tory. We meet fascinating figures such as George Marshall, Jackie Robinson, Katharine Graham, Bill Belichick, and Eleanor Roosevelt, who all reached the highest levels of power and success by con­quering their own egos. Their strategies and tactics can be ours as well.

In an era that glorifies social media, reality TV, and other forms of shameless self-promotion, the battle against ego must be fought on many fronts. Armed with the lessons in this book, as Holiday writes, “you will be less invested in the story you tell about your own specialness, and as a result, you will be liberated to accomplish the world-changing work you’ve set out to achieve.”


Simon Márton: 99 magyar vers - Simon Márton válogatásában - Helikon Zsebkönyvek 99.

The 99th volume of Helikon Publisher’s pocket book series is a special anthology: Simon Márton, the popular young poet, has selected one poem each from 99 famous (or not so famous) Hungarian poets, showing as much as possible in an anthology how diverse Hungarian poetry is. As he himself writes in his preface: this is an "attempt to approach. An attempt to uncover. To make it something that is rare, to include names that are usually left out of the usual lists, basically unknown great poems, masterpieces of forgotten authors, undeservedly enjoying professional public loathing for a long time. " In addition to poems known to everyone, we can also read almost completely unknown pieces, amazed at how good this... and that is too! And why didn't we know about it until now?

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