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- Emily Dickinson, Lesbian?: Her Letter to Susan Gilbert, in June of 1852, Might Tell Us Less Than You Think
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Monthly Archives: March 2010
Somebody had to do it.
Rhetorical Honey v. Rhetorical Vinegar: Jerry Coyne in the Light of Thomas Paine and Martha Nussbaum
Rhetorical honey v. rhetorical vinegar? Evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne thinks that atheists shouldn’t be shy about what they believe, guarding the feelings of religious believers. As an agnostic, do I think that he is he right? I think that he is. … Continue reading
People, that is. Kenda Swartz Pepper, on March 20, started an experiment: to spend 21 days experiencing what it’s like to join the one billion people on the planet who go to bed hungry. Here’s Kenda today: 1.02 billion people in … Continue reading
A bedroom fresco? Whose bedroom? Source: Spiegel And here’s Emily Dickinson’s bedroom window: Dickinson’s bedroom was at her family’s Amherst homestead. Emily’s room was on the second story of their home. Here’s one of her poems: I felt a Cleaving in my … Continue reading
In Spiegel this weekend, Dr. Michael de Ridder advocates a return to simplicity in human death: no frantic rushing about, no elaborate rescue measures: Dying a simple death is no longer an option in our society, even in places where one might … Continue reading
Didn’t Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, say to pray for your enemies? In Lancaster, California recently, I noticed this message outside a Presbyterian church, and it put me in mind of Mark Twain’s “The War Prayer“: . … Continue reading
Is human imaginative sympathy and love slowly conquering fundamentalist dogma? Perhaps, and it might be because the world is getting smaller, making it more difficult to live an insular existence and project dehumanizing traits onto others. This yesterday at NPR (in … Continue reading
I am not responsible for bringing consciousness, happiness, or the sense of freedom into the universe, but now that they are here—and however they got here—I appraise them as very good things, and want them for myself and, by imaginative sympathy, for others. … Continue reading
This Henry David Thoreau quote comes from the second chapter of Walden (1854): If the engine whistles, let it whistle till it is hoarse for its pains. If the bell rings, why should we run? We will consider what kind … Continue reading
This was in the Los Angeles Times a couple of months back: Laredo, Texas, is set to become the largest U.S. city without a bookstore. The B. Dalton in the Mall del Norte, owned by parent company Barnes & Noble, is … Continue reading
This today from a Latin American news service: Police in the northeastern state of Bahia are looking for a 22-year-old man accused of decapitating his mother and fleeing with her head, the news Web site G1 said Tuesday. I await … Continue reading
Move over Adam and Eve? With the recent fossil discovery at the Denisova cave, there is evidence of a fifth human species (now extinct) that inhabited the Earth just 30,000 years ago
Denisova cave poses yet another big problem for biblical literalists, for as recently as 30,000 years ago it appears that homo sapiens were very, very far from alone, but had at least five non-extinct and closely related human cousin species that we shared … Continue reading
Barack Obama’s signature on the health care bill.
After the passage of health care reform, Barack Obama’s job approval number has markedly risen. See Gallup here.