3 New Releases on Sale
3 New Releases on Sale
  • Survival Mentality: The Psychology of Staying Alive

    Professor Nancy Zarse, PsyD

    Available Formats: Instant Video, DVD

    When we hear about someone surviving a great challenge, we often hear that the person “rose to the occasion.” But in fact, psychologists find that in moments of terror, people revert to their lowest level of training and preparation. Knowing that, the trick is to bring up your “lowest level” by continually improving your training and preparation, practicing for survival now, and building the resilience that will sustain you in times of adversity. In Survival Mentality: The Psychology of Staying Alive, you’ll learn how to prepare now to give yourself the very best chance of surviving a life-threatening emergency.

    View Lecture List (12)

    When we hear about someone surviving a great challenge, we often hear that the person “rose to the occasion.” But in fact, psychologists find that in moments of terror, people revert to their lowest level of training and preparation. Knowing that, the trick is to bring up your “lowest level” by continually improving your training and preparation, practicing for survival now, and building the resilience that will sustain you in times of adversity. In Survival Mentality: The Psychology of Staying Alive, you’ll learn how to prepare now to give yourself the very best chance of surviving a life-threatening emergency.

    View Lecture List (12)
    12 Lectures  |  Survival Mentality: The Psychology of Staying Alive
    Lecture Titles (12)
    • 1
      What It Means to Survive
      Surviving a crisis requires successfully navigating both the event itself and the elements you bring with you to the event. Learn why the specific words you use during the crisis-whether thought or spoken-can make a significant difference in your survival. x
    • 2
      Developing an Internal Locus of Control
      Discover why having an internal locus of control will help you in a crisis-as well as, at work, in relationships, and even with your health. You'll be better able to adapt your coping strategies to the crisis at hand, learn new strategies as necessary, and anticipate and prepare for problems. x
    • 3
      Listening to Your Instincts
      Your instincts exist for only one purpose: to help you survive. And yet, we disregard our instincts over and over. Understand how you can better recognize and use your instincts, while always distinguishing between instinct, impulse, and feelings. x
    • 4
      Listening to Your Intuitions
      Your intuitions occur without conscious thought or choice. But unlike instinct, your intuitions are the result of all your life experiences, forming a set of expectations about the world, within a region of the brain that acts without conscious thought. Learn how to strengthen your intuition so you can better trust it in a crisis. x
    • 5
      Managing Your Emotions under Threat
      The ability to manage your emotions is absolutely crucial in an emergency; the higher your emotional arousal, the worse your judgment. Professor Zarse presents several strategies that can help you to best manage your emotions in a crisis and allow you to focus on making appropriate decisions under extreme pressure-potentially life-or-death decisions. x
    • 6
      How Everyday Experience Prepares You for Crisis
      While you might not realize it, each of us has training and experience that we can bring to bear in a critical incident. Learn to identify your skills and abilities that will help you survive in an emergency. Consider the skills you can develop now to be better prepared for a future challenge. x
    • 7
      Making Decisions under Pressure
      How do you make rapid, accurate decisions in stressful situations when the stakes couldn't be higher? Explore the differences between natural, recognition-primed, and pre-playing decision-making, and discover why a psychologically safe environment leads to richer learning and to making the best possible decisions during a crisis. x
    • 8
      Developing Situational Awareness
      You are already constantly collecting information about your surroundings, both consciously and unconsciously. Master the OODA loop to improve your situational awareness-observe, orient, decide, and act. Originally developed for use in the military, this protocol can increase your chances of surviving a critical incident. x
    • 9
      Perseverance toward a Positive Outcome
      In critical incidents, perseverance often makes the difference between those who survive and those who don't. Explore the factors that contribute to perseverance, from grit to attention control to self-confidence. Learn how to improve your mental conditioning and why it might be your most important survival preparation. x
    • 10
      Protective Factors That Increase Your Odds
      A variety of surprising factors can work in your favor when you find yourself in a crisis-surprising only because we don't tend to think of them as survival tools. See how community involvement and a robust social network can help you navigate emergencies as they insulate you against stress and trauma. x
    • 11
      Resilience in the Aftermath of Trauma
      What happens after you live through an emergency in which your life was on the line? While physical injuries are obvious, unseen psychological injuries can be devastating. But what about people who not only survive a crisis, but thrive? Learn about the inspiring experience of post-traumatic growth, and what those survivors have in common. x
    • 12
      We Survive Together: The Power of Community
      Not all life-or-death situations are experienced at an individual level; some occur at a community or national level. Learn how leadership, preparedness, and relationships can make the difference in whether or not a community, or an entire country, survives an existential or real-life crisis and thrives in the aftermath. x
  • The Mongol Empire
    Course  |  The Mongol Empire

    Professor Craig G. Benjamin, Ph.D.

    Available Formats: Instant Video, DVD
    Taught by Professor Craig Benjamin of Grand Valley State University, this course follows the Mongol mounted warriors who emerged out of Central Asia in the 13th century to conquer much of the known world. Although the Mongols fought with unparalleled brutality, they aspired to many of the civilized values of their victims and helped trigger long-lasting cultural interchange between East and West.
    View Lecture List (24)
    Taught by Professor Craig Benjamin of Grand Valley State University, this course follows the Mongol mounted warriors who emerged out of Central Asia in the 13th century to conquer much of the known world. Although the Mongols fought with unparalleled brutality, they aspired to many of the civilized values of their victims and helped trigger long-lasting cultural interchange between East and West.
    View Lecture List (24)
    24 Lectures  |  The Mongol Empire
    Lecture Titles (24)
    • 1
      The Mongols' Place in World History
      Starting with eyewitness accounts of the arrival of fierce Mongol armies at unsuspecting cities across Eurasia, Professor Benjamin launches his survey of the rise and decline of the Mongol Empire, the largest the world has ever known. After outlining the content of the course, he sketches the history of civilizations destined to be controlled by the Mongols-from China to Persia to Eastern Europe. x
    • 2
      The Origins of Eurasian Steppe Nomadism
      Use a big history" perspective to understand the origin of militarized nomadism in the pastoral culture that developed on the grasslands of Eurasia beginning 7,000 years ago. Consider the paradox of nomadic empires that rarely build cities, yet still interact with the great civilizations on the periphery of the Eurasian steppe. Focus on the importance of the horse and composite bow to nomadic military power." x
    • 3
      Nomadic Predecessors of the Mongols
      In this lecture, set the stage for the leader who founded the Mongol Empire in the early 13th century, Chinggis Khan (also spelled Genghis Khan). See how previous Mongolian-centered steppe empires established a template that was perfected by Chinggis. Trace these precursors to Turkic rulers in the 7th and 8th centuries, and to the Xiongnu steppe empire a thousand years earlier. x
    • 4
      The Rise of Chinggis Khan
      Drawing on The Secret History of the Mongols, written soon after Chinggis Khan's death in 1227, chart the rise of the obscure son of a minor Mongol chief to earn the title Strong" or "Universal Ruler": Chinggis Khan. His martial daring and hairbreadth escapes have all the drama of a Hollywood epic. There is even a beautiful and formidable love interest, Borte, who Chinggis chose as his wife." x
    • 5
      Chinggis Khan's Early Conquests
      Having consolidated his power over the Mongol tribes, Chinggis Khan had to decide what to do next with his unbeatable army, and how to prevent it from dissolving into division and chaos. Review the geopolitical situation in inner Eurasia at this time. Then follow Chinggis's forces on their first campaigns outside of Mongolia. Their number-one target was the Jin dynasty in China, longtime antagonists of the nomads. x
    • 6
      Mongol Institutions under Chinggis Khan
      Spotlight three innovations introduced by Chinggis Khan to unify and modernize the Mongol state: his reorganization of Mongol society; his taxation reforms; and his creation of a new law code, the Great Yasa, which included injunctions designed to protect horses, water, and wild animals. The code also specified seemingly minor breaches of decorum that were punishable by death. x
    • 7
      Chinggis Khan's Khwarazmian Campaign
      Take off on the brutal campaign called by one historian a masterpiece of Mongol warfare at all levels." This was Chinggis Khan's military operations in the early 1220s against Shah Muhammad, ruler of the Khwarazmian Empire, located in the regions of modern-day Iran and Central Asia. Incited by the shah's murder of his traders and emissaries, Chinggis led a vengeful invasion of death and destruction." x
    • 8
      The Death of Chinggis Khan
      Ever restless, Chinggis Khan withdrew from his western conquests to start a new campaign thousands of miles away in northwestern China. Learn about the hunting accident that reportedly led to his death in 1227, the mystery surrounding his burial place, and his chosen successor among his sons. Then weigh the legacy of Chinggis Khan. Was he a civilizing force or an agent of unparalleled disaster? x
    • 9
      Ogedai Khan's Western Campaigns
      Chinggis Khan's third son and successor, Ogedai, wasted no time striving to fulfill his father's dying order: Life is short. I could not conquer all the world. You will have to do it!" The new khan took up unfinished business against the Jin dynasty in China and sent a force to subdue lands in Eastern Europe, defeating the cream of European knighthood. Discover what stopped his onslaught." x
    • 10
      Mongol Queens and the Contest for the Empire
      Delve into the administration and politics of the Mongol Empire during the 10-year hiatus from expansion that followed the death of Ogedai in 1241. Learn about the Mongols' remarkably swift pony express," and spotlight two influential queens, Toregene and Sorkaktani, who managed the empire and paved the way for their favored candidates for Great Khan: Guyuk and his successor, Mongke." x
    • 11
      Dividing the Empire: A Tale of Four Brothers
      Relive the exploits of four sons of Tolui, the youngest heir of Chinggis Khan. Among other adventures, Mongke Khan led the attack on China's Song dynasty in concert with his brother Qubilai, eventually to become the legendary Qubilai Khan. Meanwhile, Hulagu Khan engineered the brilliant siege of Baghdad, while the youngest brother, Ariq Boke, attempted to usurp the khanate, sparking a civil war. x
    • 12
      The Strengths of Mongol Military Organization
      Survey the armament, tactics, and organization of the Mongol military machine. Far from being a mob of fanatical mounted warriors, the Mongols were superbly trained and disciplined. Consider the close connection between their traditional hunting practices on the steppe and the skills needed to outsmart and defeat another army. Few fighting forces in history have been as consistently effective. x
    • 13
      The Mongols in China
      Follow Qubilai Khan's conquest, unification, and leadership of China, which was the world's most technologically advanced state at the time. In order to overcome China's formidable defenses, Qubilai had to adopt new tactics, including ships and catapult heavy artillery. During Qubilai's reign as the first head of the Yuan dynasty, he hosted and employed an exotic visitor from the West: Marco Polo. x
    • 14
      The Mongols in East and Southeast Asia
      Driven by the Mongols' sacred mission to conquer the world, Qubilai Khan twice mounted invasions of Japan. Both times he was defeated by the samurai warrior ethic, with a generous assist from catastrophic typhoons. Termed kamikaze-or divine winds"-these storms were afterwards seen as heavenly protectors by the Japanese. Also, learn how Qubilai had mixed success subduing states in Southeast Asia." x
    • 15
      The Mongols in Central Asia
      After the Mongol Empire broke apart, descendants of Chinggis Khan's middle sons Chagatai and Ogedei ruled large parts of Central Asia. Investigate the internecine, familial strife that plagued this region, exacerbated by conflicts with the Mongol rulers of China, Persia, and Russia. Despite the political chaos, the economy functioned relatively well, with Silk Road commerce flourishing. x
    • 16
      The Mongols in Persia and the Middle East
      Using the contemporary chronicle of Rashid al-Din as a guide, turn to the history of Mongol rule in Persia and the Middle East. An important element of the story is the clash of religions in a region that was becoming increasingly Muslim. A good example is the Mongol ruler of Persia, Oljeitu, who was raised as a Christian, converted to Buddhism, later to Sunni Islam, and then to Shi'a Islam. x
    • 17
      The Mongols in Russia: The Golden Horde
      Travel to the Golden Horde, the farthest west of the khanates established after the death of Mongke Khan in the mid-13th century. Named by Russian chroniclers, the Golden Horde was a fertile arena for civil war and eventually played a pivotal role in the rise of Moscow and the Russian state. Hear about a notorious incident of germ warfare instigated by the Mongols, involving bubonic plague. x
    • 18
      The Pax Mongolica: Eurasia Reconnected
      Follow in the footsteps of a succession of travelers who gave Europeans their first glimpse of the extraordinary cultural diversity of Asia during a period of stability called Pax Mongolica. Marco Polo is the most famous of these medieval globetrotters. Evaluate the veracity of his account, and hear about lesser known merchants, envoys, missionaries, and adventurers who also made the arduous trip. x
    • 19
      The Collapse of the Mongol Empires
      Chart the disintegration of the Mongol Empire, observing its rapid collapse in the Persian Ilkhanate in 1335 and Yuan China in 1368. Also, analyze the much more gradual break-up of the Chagatayid khanate and the Golden Horde, as the Mongols splintered into smaller, more autonomous units. Finally, focus on some of the long-lived successor states to the Mongols, such as the Ming dynasty in China. x
    • 20
      Timur the Lame, a.k.a. Tamerlane
      Launch into the career of the last of the great Mongol rulers, Timur, the reputed Scourge of God"-also known as Tamerlane from his lameness due to a war wound. War was the lifeblood of this minor Turco-Mongol noble, who rose to found the Timurid Empire. Cover his early exploits and his campaign against Toqtamish, khan of the Golden Horde. Also learn about Moscow's miraculous escape from Timur." x
    • 21
      Timur's Major Campaigns
      Ride with Timur on his major expeditions that brought him infamy throughout Eurasia and made European monarchs shudder with fear. Cover two invasions of Persia and the destruction of Baghdad; an incursion into India and the sacking of Delhi; a military operation into Anatolia, where he defeated the army of Ottoman sultan, Bayezid I; and his final planned assault on the Ming dynasty in China. x
    • 22
      Samarkand: Timur's Cultural Capital
      Take a break from conquests to explore Timur's fabled capital, Samarkand, located in present-day Uzbekistan. Already rich in history, the city was reborn under Timur, financed by booty and built by artisans captured during his campaigns. Investigate Timur's mausoleum and the effort of Soviet-era archaeologists to reconstruct his appearance, which some argue provoked an ancient curse. x
    • 23
      From Mughals to Soviets: Eurasia after Timur
      Track the fortunes of several of Timur's descendants, who attempted to govern the remnants of his vast empire. Among them was his grandson, Ulugh Beg, a matchless astronomer, scholar, and patron of civilization, but unfortunately an indifferent ruler. Also consider the history of Inner Eurasia over a period of more than six centuries, from the early 15th century to the end of the 20th century. x
    • 24
      The Mongols and the Making of the Modern World
      Close the course by assessing the heritage of the Mongols from a variety of perspectives-as conquerors, unifiers, social and political revolutionaries, as promoters of religious tolerance, protectors of commerce, and even as facilitators of the spread of plague across Eurasia, but also as disseminators of crucial technologies that undoubtedly played a role in the making of the modern world. x
  • Books that Matter: The Federalist Papers

    Professor Joseph L. Hoffmann, J.D.

    Available Formats: Instant Video, DVD

    Books That Matter: The Federalist Papers gives you the chance to delve into one of the most influential guides to the U.S. Constitution. Taught by acclaimed professor and legal scholar Joseph L. Hoffmann of the Indiana University Maurer School of Law, these 12 thought-provoking lectures unpack the 85 brilliant essays by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay that serve essentially as the Bible of American government.

    View Lecture List (12)

    Books That Matter: The Federalist Papers gives you the chance to delve into one of the most influential guides to the U.S. Constitution. Taught by acclaimed professor and legal scholar Joseph L. Hoffmann of the Indiana University Maurer School of Law, these 12 thought-provoking lectures unpack the 85 brilliant essays by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay that serve essentially as the Bible of American government.

    View Lecture List (12)
    12 Lectures  |  Books that Matter: The Federalist Papers
    Lecture Titles (12)
    • 1
      A Blueprint for American Government
      Understanding The Federalist Papers starts with understanding who wrote them and why they were written. In this opening lecture, go back to 1787 to meet Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay to find out what challenges they faced in communicating the need for the new U.S. Constitution. x
    • 2
      A Democracy or a Republic?
      The Framers of the Constitution believed pure democracy was something to be feared for the way it would lead to the rise of factions, which would in turn tear apart the system. Was it possible to create a new model that offered the benefits of representative democracy without the problems of factions? See how the Framers tackled this conflict. x
    • 3
      A Federation or a Nation?
      When the Framers gathered in Philadelphia to write a new constitution, they essentially were representing a loose federation of nation-states. Their original charge was to modify the Articles of Confederation, but there was a solid case for a strong central government. Examine this dilemma and the compromises that Madison and Hamilton made. x
    • 4
      American Federalism
      Given all the conflicts and compromises of 1787, how did the American federal system come about? How did the Framers solve the issues of the day while preserving flexibility for the future? Review the enumerated powers of the federal government and see how power was balanced between the federal government and the states. x
    • 5
      Dual Sovereignty
      The system that emerged under the new constitution gave the federal government the ability to determine the scope of its own powers. What checks did the system place on the federal government? Who gets to decide when the federal government has violated its powers? Reflect on the powers of the states and the American people. x
    • 6
      Popular Sovereignty and States' Rights
      The idea of popular sovereignty-the power of the American people-reshaped the relationship between the states and the federal government. In this lecture, consider the ever-changing relationship of the states to the federal government. See how the institution of slavery was the catalyst for a crisis. x
    • 7
      The Separation of Powers
      In Federalist Nos. 47 through 51, James Madison explains why the concept of separation of powers" is so important for the future of the American government. Dig into these five amazing essays to understand what the familiar term "separation of powers" really means-and why he was so optimistic about America's future." x
    • 8
      The Federal Legislature
      James Madison believed the legislature posed the greatest threat to the integrity of the system the Framers had so carefully designed. In Federalist No. 48," "Federalist No. 51," and elsewhere, he laid out warnings about the legislature seizing too much power, as well as the solution of a bicameral legislature. Delve into this thorny issue." x
    • 9
      The President of the United States
      Shift your attention from the legislature to the chief executive, the single most powerful government official in the world today. But, as you will learn in your exploration of The Federalist Papers, the Framers had a different view of the presidency. Review Alexander Hamilton's essays about the office and the powers of the president. x
    • 10
      The Federal Judiciary
      Round out your study of the branches of government with an in-depth look at the federal judiciary, one of the three branches of the federal government. The Framers believed the judiciary was the branch least likely to infringe on the liberty of the American people. Reflect on its role and its power, and then review the most important constitutional law case in American History: Marbury v. Madison. x
    • 11
      The Evolution of American Federalism
      The story of the Constitution is one of both stability and change. In this lecture, take a look at some of the most important ways the Constitution has evolved over the past 230 years. Consider whether the changes have largely honored the original spirit of the Constitution or broken faith with the vision of the Framers. x
    • 12
      The Future of the United States Constitution
      What does the future look like for America's democratic republic? As you have seen, one of the most important trends has been the gradual increase in federal power, but the tension between federal and state power remains. Is there still a future for republican government? What might a Second Constitutional Convention look like? And would we want to find out? x