Announcing 3 New Releases on Sale Now!
Announcing 3 New Releases on Sale Now!
  • The Agency: A History of the CIA

    Professor Hugh Wilford, PhD

    Available Formats: Video Download, DVD

    Few organizations are as fascinating, as mysterious—and as controversial—as the Central Intelligence Agency. In The Agency: A History of the CIA, Professor Hugh Wilford transforms decades of research into an engrossing 24-lecture course that helps you better understand the role the CIA has played in recent American history, from the Cold War to the War on Terror.

    View Lecture List (24)

    Few organizations are as fascinating, as mysterious—and as controversial—as the Central Intelligence Agency. In The Agency: A History of the CIA, Professor Hugh Wilford transforms decades of research into an engrossing 24-lecture course that helps you better understand the role the CIA has played in recent American history, from the Cold War to the War on Terror.

    View Lecture List (24)
    24 Lectures  |  The Agency: A History of the CIA
    Lecture Titles (24)
    • 1
      Secrecy, Democracy, and the Birth of the CIA
      Why did the United States create a secret foreign intelligence service in the first place? For the answer, examine three key periods of U.S. government intelligence before the birth of the CIA: the American Revolution to the late 1930s, World War II, and the postwar years from 1945 to 1947. x
    • 2
      George Kennan and the Rise of Covert Ops
      Professor Wilford reveals how the CIA transformed from an intelligence agency to housing the United States’ premier covert-action unit in the space of just two years. Central to this conversion is George F. Kennan, who declared “political warfare” against the Soviet Union through his policies of both containment and “rollback.” x
    • 3
      The CIA, China, and the Korean War
      Discover how the CIA, with its attention drawn to Asia, failed to rein in the growing emphasis on covert operations and restore its focus on intelligence gathering and analysis. Two factors you'll focus on: the lack of public scrutiny of the CIA's actions and the arrival of future CIA director Allen Dulles. x
    • 4
      The Iran Coup of August 1953
      More than any other operation, the 1953 Iran Coup created a culture of covert action that would shape the CIA's future. First, study the shifting political attitudes toward Iranian nationalism. Then, learn about the Iran operation itself (TP-AJAX). Finally, ponder who was most responsible for Mohammad Mosaddeq's fall from power. x
    • 5
      Regime Change in Guatemala
      In this lecture, explore the CIA’s role in the Guatemalan coup (the operation codenamed PB-SUCCESS) that brought about a new era of murderous dictatorship to the country—and a surge of anti-American sentiment across Central and South America that has haunted U.S. relations with the region to this day. x
    • 6
      Operation Rollback in Eastern Europe
      One of the CIA’s first major setbacks was the tragic failure of the Hungarian uprising, despite the agency’s attempts to liberate the Eastern Bloc countries during the early 1950s. Here, investigate CIA efforts to organize anti-communist Eastern European émigrés to liberate their homelands and the creation of Radio Free Europe to counteract communist-controlled media. x
    • 7
      U-2 Spy Missions and Battleground Berlin
      Focus on the CIA’s efforts to gain intelligence about its chief Cold War enemy: the Soviet Union. Professor Wilford covers how the CIA employed human agents as spies (HUMINT), how the CIA attempted to intercept Soviet signals (SIGINT), and how the CIA used advanced technology—like the U-2 spy plane—to gather intelligence (TECHINT). x
    • 8
      The CIA in Syria, Indonesia, and the Congo
      Go inside the CIA's three major covert ops setbacks of the late 1950s. The first was a follow-up attempt at regime change in Syria (1957), the second was an attempt to unseat the Indonesia leader Sukarno (1958), and the last was the effort to remove the Congolese prime minster, Patrice Lumumba (1960). x
    • 9
      Under Orders: The Agency Targets Castro
      Why were both Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy so dead-set on removing Fidel Castro from power? How did the CIA plan to use hallucinogens to assassinate the communist dictator? What made the CIA’s Bay of Pigs covert operation such a resounding—and public—disaster? x
    • 10
      Missile Crisis in Cuba and at Langley
      The Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962 was arguably the defining moment in the Cold War: 13 days in which the world came closest to a nuclear confrontation. Using recent scholarship, Professor Wilford unpacks the CIA's performance during the crisis and how it sparked a return to traditional intelligence work instead of covert ops. x
    • 11
      Unquiet American: Edward Lansdale in Vietnam
      Get a more complete understanding of U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War by including the CIA in the larger narrative—specifically the fascinating and controversial Edward Lansdale. Learn how the CIA tried to win the war through nation-building and counterinsurgency, and how it provided the military with tactical and strategic intelligence. x
    • 12
      CIA Fronts and the Ramparts Exposé
      Why did the CIA secretly fund groups of Americans at home in the United States—the longest-running and most expensive operation of the Cold War era? What did the groups themselves think of the roles they played? Investigate how the rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union quickly became a global ideological battle. x
    • 13
      Spies in Hollywood: Romance and Thriller
      Since its inception, the CIA has deliberately tried to influence the purveyors of culture in film, television, and literature. Visit the cultural front of the Cold War as the CIA becomes a secret patron of American musicians, artists, writers, and filmmakers. Also, take a closer look at how popular culture, in turn, shaped the CIA. x
    • 14
      Nixon, Kissinger, and the Coup in Chile
      Professor Wilford challenges the dominant narrative of the CIA's involvement in the Chilean coup of 1973. Learn why the organization was less responsible than other U.S. players (such as Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger), and why the coup illustrates the agency's decline during the 1970s as a chief weapon of the Cold War. x
    • 15
      Watergate, Nixon, and the Family Jewels
      Using recently released government records, unpack the domestic CIA operations of the Nixon era and discover a systemic culture of secret government overreach—with the CIA at the center. Topics include the program known as MH-CHAOS, the CIA’s contributions to Watergate, and journalist Seymour Hersh’s 1974 exposé of CIA domestic intelligence operations. x
    • 16
      James Angleton and the Great CIA Molehunt
      Explore intelligence officer James Angleton’s dramatic hunt for Soviet moles inside the CIA, a story of deception, betrayal, and tragedy. Angleton’s story—and his ultimate fate—hold powerful lessons for our own time, when secret state power is the source of renewed public debate and concern. x
    • 17
      Colby, Church, and the CIA Crisis of 1975
      The 1970s saw a growing movement against the CIA, from congressional joint-oversight committees to whistleblowers like Philip Agee. Was the CIA out of control? What forces drove the antagonism toward the agency, and why were they so powerful in the spring of 1975? Discover the answers here. x
    • 18
      The CIA, Carter, and the Hostage Crisis in Iran
      Go inside the story of the 1979 Tehran hostage crisis that wracked Jimmy Carter's presidency, with a particular focus on the CIA's failure to anticipate Iran's Islamic revolution. Despite the geopolitical gloom, spend some time examining the one bright spot for the CIA: the successful rescue of six diplomats who avoided capture. x
    • 19
      Reagan, Casey, and the Iran-Contra Scandal
      The start of the Reagan presidency saw a return to the unchecked freedom of the CIA's golden age. Then came the Iran-Contra Scandal, which culminated in criminal charges, convictions, pardons, and dismissals. As you'll learn, the potential for 1970s-style conflict between Congress and the CIA remained. x
    • 20
      Afghanistan, the Soviets, and the CIA
      Turn now to the final years of the Cold War and the CIA's adventures in Afghanistan during the 1980s. Also, investigate the agency's intelligence about the collapse of the Eastern Bloc and the Soviet Union a decade later. Do covert operatives deserve credit for bringing these events about? x
    • 21
      Intelligence Failure: The Road to 9/11
      First, follow the rise of Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda during the final decades of the 20th century and the dawn of the terrorist organization’s war with the United States. Then, Professor Wilford addresses the provocative question of why the CIA failed to predict—or disrupt—the terrorist attacks of September 11. x
    • 22
      CIA Advance in Afghanistan, Retreat in Iraq
      Trace the CIA’s role in the first years of the War on Terror—years that were among the darkest in the agency’s history. Focus on the agency’s major setbacks in the War on Terror, including the failure to capture Osama bin Laden and the faulty evidence that led to the Iraq War. x
    • 23
      CIA Renditions, Interrogations, and Drones
      Examine the CIA’s role in two phases of the War on Terror: the capture and interrogation of suspected terrorists and, after those methods were discredited, the killing of terrorists using drone strikes. By the end of the Obama era, the agency had regained some of its stature—and had become more vulnerable. x
    • 24
      The CIA Balance Sheet: Wins and Losses
      What does a balance sheet of the CIA's wins and losses since its creation look like? As Professor Wilford reveals, the CIA's intelligence performance hasn't been as poor as some have argued. But there still remains, in the world's largest democracy, an abiding tension between secret government power and accountability. x
  • Theories of Knowledge: How to Think about What You Know

    Professor Joseph H. Shieber, PhD

    Available Formats: Video Download, DVD

    Delve into the exciting world of knowledge, belief, and truth in Theories of Knowledge: How to Think about What You Know. Taught by acclaimed Professor Joseph H. Shieber of Lafayette College, these 24 mind-bending lectures take you from Plato to Hume to contemporary neurobiologists, and from wide-ranging social networks to the deepest recesses of your own brain.

    View Lecture List (24)

    Delve into the exciting world of knowledge, belief, and truth in Theories of Knowledge: How to Think about What You Know. Taught by acclaimed Professor Joseph H. Shieber of Lafayette College, these 24 mind-bending lectures take you from Plato to Hume to contemporary neurobiologists, and from wide-ranging social networks to the deepest recesses of your own brain.

    View Lecture List (24)
    24 Lectures  |  Theories of Knowledge: How to Think about What You Know
    Lecture Titles (24)
    • 1
      Philosophy and Transformative Experiences
      What do philosophical “theories of knowledge” have to do with everyday life? If you believe the field of epistemology is esoteric and abstract, you’ll be surprised by how fundamental it is to everyday life. In this opening lecture, reflect on how we make “transformative” experiences—and why common sense might lead us astray. x
    • 2
      Knowledge, Truth, and Belief
      Philosophers have been ruminating on the nature of knowledge for thousands of years. Using Plato as your guide, investigate the relationship between “knowledge,” “truth,” and “belief.” Professor Shieber brings in contemporary psychology and what we know about child development to show how we come to know what we know. x
    • 3
      Foundationalism: Descartes's Evil Demon
      We’re all familiar with Descartes’s cogito, ergo sum, or “I think, therefore I am.” Delve into this powerful analysis of reality to discover what Descartes meant. As you’ll learn, he was trying to develop an infallible explanation for his knowledge of the world, which led him deep inside his own mind. x
    • 4
      The Coherence Theory of Knowledge
      Turn from Descartes's theory of infallible knowledge to fallible yet still internal theories of reality. The most prominent theory is coherentism, a framework for understanding the world in terms of logical cohesion and consistency. While this theory has much to offer, you'll also wrestle with several key challenges. x
    • 5
      Externalist Theories of Knowledge
      Not all theories of knowledge rely on internal justification. Here, you will explore several 20th-century approaches to knowledge that don't require that justification is internally accessible. Consider how to gauge beliefs in terms of external consistency, accuracy, reliability, and validity. x
    • 6
      Problems with Self-Knowledge
      Given all this talk of beliefs and external reality, surely it's safe to say we at least understand ourselves, right? Traditional, Cartesian epistemology may consider self-knowledge the foundation of all other knowledge, but as current research in psychology, biology, and neuroscience shows, our self-knowledge is far from complete or even accurate. x
    • 7
      Does Sense Perception Support Knowledge?
      One of the most significant sources of knowledge comes from sense perception—what we see, hear, smell, and experience of the world. Yet our common-sense way of thinking about sense perception is misleading at best. In this first of two lectures on perception, unpack the role of our senses in justifying beliefs about the world. x
    • 8
      Perception: Foundationalism and Externalism
      Continue your study of sense perception with a look at what it implies about the internalist and externalist theories you have studied so far. After examining several problems with internalist foundationalism, Professor Shieber explores how cognitive psychology supports an externalist view of knowledge. x
    • 9
      The Importance of Memory for Knowledge
      Memory plays a crucial role in knowledge because all of our perceptions are impermanent and fleeting. Here, you will examine the nature of memory. Are memories stored experiences in the mind, or are they past events themselves? And does memory merely preserve belief, or can you gain new knowledge from your memories? x
    • 10
      Confabulations and False Memories
      One of the most intriguing aspects of memory is just how fallible it is as a guide to reality. In this lecture, you will turn to how memory fits into the internalist and externalist theories of knowledge. False memories, confabulations, source theories, and forgotten evidence show just how tricky memory really is. x
    • 11
      The Extended Mind
      We are quickly approaching a future of augmented reality, simulated consciousness, brain implants, and more. These brain enhancements raise a number of philosophical questions: What counts as your mind? And is an enhanced brain a better brain? Consider the role of smart phones and photographs in preserving memory. x
    • 12
      Do We Have Innate Knowledge?
      Step back to one of the Enlightenment's most captivating debates: Do we know the world through our own minds (as Descartes argued) or through empirical evidence (as Locke and Hume argued)? After unpacking this debate, see how Kant came to the rescue to distinguish between a priori and a posteriori knowledge. x
    • 13
      How Deduction Contributes to Knowledge
      Much of our belief system stems from things we have not experienced directly; rather, we infer much of our knowledge through the processes of logical reasoning. Here, tackle the role of deduction, in which inference stems from the logical relationship of a series of steps. Consider syllogisms, “if-then” arguments, and other deductive procedures. x
    • 14
      Hume's Attack on Induction
      Deduction and induction are the two types of logical inference. In this first of two explorations of induction, you will examine the reliability and usefulness of induction. You'll start with David Hume's challenge to induction to see whether it can be used to generate knowledge at all. And even if knowledge comes from inductive inference, are humans any good at it? x
    • 15
      The Raven Paradox and New Riddle of Induction
      Continue your tour of induction by looking at a few logical puzzles. There are no easy answers to the raven paradox or the new riddle of induction, but picking apart these challenges can offer valuable lessons about inductive inference. Revisit Hume's attack, and reflect on how Bayes's theorem of probability applies to inductive reasoning. x
    • 16
      Know-How versus Propositional Knowledge
      So far, this course has tackled “propositional knowledge”—or knowledge that X is true. But knowledge-that isn’t the only kind of knowledge. Although philosophers didn’t think much about knowledge-how (know-how) until recently, it has much to teach us—especially about internalist and externalist theories of knowledge. x
    • 17
      Knowledge Derived from Testimony
      Sensory perception, memory, self-awareness, and logical inference are all personal sources of knowledge, but much of our knowledge comes from consulting others' expertise. Discover the breadth of knowledge that comes from testimony, and find out what perils exist in relying on the word of others. x
    • 18
      Social Psychology and Source Monitoring
      To evaluate knowledge that comes from testimony, you might think we analyze the trustworthiness of the source and weigh our beliefs accordingly. But as social psychology tells us and you will see here, we are very bad at spotting liars, and we tend to accept testimony without consciously monitoring the source of the information. x
    • 19
      Testimony through Social Networks
      Social networks play a powerful role in how we acquire knowledge from others. Here, explore the nature of our social networks—how many close friends we tend to have, and how many people are in our wider social network—and then see how our networks provide us information, and how reliable the information is. x
    • 20
      The Reliability of Scientific Testimony
      Previously, you discovered the “social externalist” theory of testimony. Examples from the scientific world provide evidence for this view of ensuring accurate testimony. Reflect on several scientific achievements made possible by “socially distributed cognitive processes”—processes where the sum is greater than the individual players. x
    • 21
      Testimony in the Media
      The media is a great example of a socially distributed process—but how do we know the information is reliable and accurate? Go inside the world of media fact-checking and how our media consumption impacts our knowledge. Consider the challenge of ensuring accuracy in the age of “click-bait.” x
    • 22
      Pragmatic and Moral Encroachment
      Much of this course has focused on the truth-likelihood of knowledge, without focusing on the particular interests of the knower. In this lecture, survey two key challenges to this approach: First, do your practical interests impact whether you have knowledge? Second, do your moral concerns impact whether you have knowledge? x
    • 23
      Radical Skepticism: The Brain in a Vat
      Return to the beginning, in which you studied Descartes’s radical skepticism. While there are many problems with Descartes’s theory of knowledge, his fundamental skepticism is tough to reckon with. How do we know we are not just a brain in a vat, à la The Matrix? Delve into several arguments against this scenario. x
    • 24
      The Future of Epistemology
      Epistemology is an old field, but in the 21st century there has been an explosion of new ideas, approaches, and applications. Conclude the course with a look at the future of the field, including “formal epistemology,” “epistemic injustice,” and the potential integration of externalist, foundationalist, and coherentist approaches to knowledge. x
  • Adobe Photoshop CC:  The Complete Guide

    Instructor Ben Willmore, Photoshop Expert

    Available Formats: Video Download, DVD

    In Adobe Photoshop CC: The Complete Guide, photographer and world-renowned Photoshop instructor Ben Willmore will guide you through 21 lessons, starting from the very basics of accessing files and using the most popular effects to gradually progressing into advanced tools and techniques that can open up a whole new world of photo editing possibilities. Whether you want to brighten a family photo, create an amazing photo collage to promote your business, or anything in between, you will be able to easily find and use the right tools for the job.

    View Lecture List (21)

    In Adobe Photoshop CC: The Complete Guide, photographer and world-renowned Photoshop instructor Ben Willmore will guide you through 21 lessons, starting from the very basics of accessing files and using the most popular effects to gradually progressing into advanced tools and techniques that can open up a whole new world of photo editing possibilities. Whether you want to brighten a family photo, create an amazing photo collage to promote your business, or anything in between, you will be able to easily find and use the right tools for the job.

    View Lecture List (21)
    21 Lectures  |  Adobe Photoshop CC: The Complete Guide
    Lecture Titles (21)
    • 1
      Introduction to Photoshop
      Begin by looking at what Photoshop is and its many features, starting with your first step: opening files. Then move on to resolution and color settings, file formats, managing panels, creating and using presets, and more. Also gain a valuable understanding of the differences between Adobe Lightroom, Bridge, and Camera RAW. x
    • 2
      How to Use Camera RAW
      Most of the basic adjustments users need to make to their photographs can be done in Adobe Camera RAW (ACR)—an easy, one-stop shop containing the best of Photoshop. Look at the capabilities of ACR and, through several demonstrations, why up to 70% of your image finishing can be accomplished there. x
    • 3
      Making Selections in Adobe Photoshop
      What do you do if you want to alter just a small portion of your photograph at a time? Learn the different editing tools and techniques for making selections in Photoshop, including the lasso, quick selection, and paint tools. Begin with simple shapes and progress to more complex and precise challenges. x
    • 4
      Using Layers in Adobe Photoshop
      Layers in Photoshop comprise the various elements of your image and they are an important concept to understand before moving into more advanced territory. Build a solid foundation in this first of several looks at the concept, as you explore not just the technical how-to aspects, but also how to think about layers and what you want to accomplish. x
    • 5
      Using Layer Masks in Adobe Photoshop
      Adding and removing elements from images is about more than cut-and-paste. When you understand how to use masking via layers in Photoshop, you can manipulate your images in surprising new ways. Watch as Mr. Willmore shows you how to alter specific portions of a single image and how to create a new image by masking and combining several shots. x
    • 6
      Tools Panel in Adobe Photoshop
      Get an overview of the editing tools panel and where to find the tools you need for various adjustments. Resize, trim, and rotate images with the crop tool; match colors with the eyedropper; navigate the color panel and brush panel; set up and store preset elements and swatches in the libraries panel; and more. x
    • 7
      Adjustment Layers in Adobe Photoshop
      Often, you need to make adjustments to a particular part of an image, but without disturbing the other elements. Learn to use adjustment layers in Photoshop to make tonal adjustments to specific portions of your images, as well as how to reduce color noise or adjust brightness and contrast. x
    • 8
      Color Adjustments in Adobe Photoshop
      Learn the essentials of color adjustment in the Properties Panel, including hue, saturation, and lightness (HSL), as well as color matching and manipulation. See how you can isolate colors for adjustment without altering the other colors present and why you should be aware of the settings that can affect your tools. x
    • 9
      Retouching Images in Adobe Photoshop
      Begin your basic photo editing fixes with spot removal in Camera RAW. Then, turn to how to eliminate or downplay unwanted objects using the spot healing brush, followed by a look at how to fill in empty areas with the magic wand tool or the selection tool and the fill option. Also look at the healing brush and using paint tools for retouching. x
    • 10
      Layer Blending Modes
      Explore the layer blending modes menu, which you'll find throughout Adobe Photoshop, which can allow you to change the ways your tools and layers interact with each other. Use this handy tool to create all sorts of eye-catching effects, including how to layer similar images, create repeating patterns, and much more. x
    • 11
      How to Use Filters in Adobe Photoshop
      How do you combine multiple photographs to create a panorama? And how do you avoid making effects look artificial or generic? Learn how to use filters in Adobe Photoshop so you can fix problem areas, heighten contrast and detail, and create special effects, such as making your photos look like paintings. x
    • 12
      Advanced Photoshop Masks
      Take what you have learned about masks so far and turn to more advanced techniques. Learn how to use advanced masks to isolate a part of your photo so you can make targeted adjustments on that portion only. Also get valuable guidance on when you should use complex techniques and when it may be better to keep it simple. x
    • 13
      Using Smart Objects in Adobe Photoshop
      Fundamentally change the way you think about Photoshop as you learn about using smart objects, which allows you to preserve the original properties even after saving and closing. Look at how the function works, when it can help you—and when it can get in your way. x
    • 14
      Photography for Photoshop
      Mr. Willmore helps you consider some things you might shoot with Photoshop in mind, such as taking multiple shots to stitch together as a panorama. Also, see how shooting in HDR can give you multiple versions of the same image that you can combine or adjust according to your needs. x
    • 15
      Photo Retouching in Photoshop
      Learn to do more advanced photo retouching in Photoshop with blend modes, the magic wand tool, the adjustment brush, and more. Understand how to determine which tools are best for the corrections you want to make, and when you should tackle things manually and when you can automate instead. x
    • 16
      Warp, Bend, Liquify
      The ability to warp, bend, and liquify your images is important when you want to place them on curved surfaces, add them to other photos, or make them match a particular perspective. Incorporate some of tools you have learned previously and combine them with new techniques that will allow you to move and combine your images in new ways. x
    • 17
      Advanced Photoshop Layers
      Use what you have learned about layers as you explore some of the hidden features and unique settings in advanced Adobe Photoshop layers that can take your skills to the next level. With these insights, you will be able to do more complex manipulations and adjustments and further increase your photo editing toolkit. x
    • 18
      Photoshop Tips and Tricks
      The more you work with Photoshop, the more you will uncover about its capabilities— and the techniques and workarounds that can make your experience even better. Learn helpful and time-saving Photoshop tips and tricks like scanning photos in bulk, using the histogram to make your adjustments, and automated color correction. x
    • 19
      Photoshop Actions
      Now that you know many of the tools and techniques Photoshop has to offer, learn how Photoshop actions allow you to automate common tasks to make your workflow faster and more efficient. Once you know what you need to accomplish, you can add plugins, shortcuts, and design presets that will make your Photoshop experience even better. x
    • 20
      Troubleshooting Photoshop
      Even the most experienced Photoshop users can run into trouble, and some issues are more common than you might think. Follow Mr. Willmore as he demonstrates some of the things that can go wrong in Photoshop and how to go about troubleshooting in a variety of situations. x
    • 21
      Photoshop Q&A
      Once you know the most important tools—and quite a few tricks and hidden gems— what is the next step? Close the course by looking at specific issues and roadblocks many users encounter as Mr. Willmore holds a Photoshop Q&A, where he fields questions from students via Skype. x