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Tag Archive: history

May 18 2013

[#wiscfi liveblog] The History of Atheism, Feminism, and the Science of Brains

Now up: Jennifer Michael Hecht, a poet and author of three books about history. She has a PhD in the history of science from Columbia, and teaches at the New School and Columbia. 4:05: The first thing we can do to forward the goals that we have is to show up. To do what you’re …

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May 18 2013

[#wiscfi liveblog] Why the Lost History of Secular Women Matters Today

Susan Jacoby is up! She is a journalist and author who’s written a bunch of awesome books, including The Age of American Unreason, which I recently read. 1:50: Susan Jacoby opens with a poem published in 1837 about the trend of women speaking publicly about political causes. Oh, the humanity: 1:53: The reason we’ve been …

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May 18 2013

[#wiscfi liveblog] Sexism and Religion: Can the Knot Be Untied?

I’m finally up and watching Katha Pollitt speak! Pollitt is a poet (say that five times fast) and a columnist for The Nation. 10:10: I chose the topic of my talk today because I didn’t know the answer: can religion be disentangled from the misogyny in its texts and its practices. I asked a random …

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May 17 2013

[#wiscfi liveblog] The Mattering Map: Religion, Humanism, and Moral Progress

I’m liveblogging Rebecca Goldstein’s talk, “The Mattering Map: Religion, Humanism, and Moral Progress.” Goldstein is a novelist and professor of philosophy at Barnard College. Follow along! 4:18: “Amanda just said in her wonderful talk that she wasn’t going to bore you with philosophy. That’s my job.” I agonized over this talk. Should I publicly address …

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Apr 14 2013

Viewing History Skeptically, Part 2: Beauty

Joan Jacobs Brumberg's "The Body Project"

One of the first things one learns in a college-level history or sociology course is that the ways we define and think about various human attributes and qualities—sexual orientation, mental illness, gender, race, virginity—are never static. They vary geographically and temporally, and even though it may seem that the way we currently conceptualize a particular …

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Apr 01 2013

The Pressing Issue of Sham Gay Marriages

This, sadly, is not an April Fools’ joke. (Gotcha with that last one, though, right??) Sue Everhart, chairwoman of the Georgia Republican Party, on same-sex marriage: You may be as straight as an arrow, and you may have a friend that is as straight as an arrow. Say you had a great job with the …

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Mar 23 2013

Viewing History Skeptically: On Shifting Cultural Assumptions and Attitudes

I’ve been reading Odd Girls and Twilight Lovers, Lillian Faderman’s sweeping social history of lesbians in 20th century America (this is the sort of thing I do for fun). At the beginning of the chapter on World War II, Faderman makes this insight: If there is one major point to be made in a social history …

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Dec 13 2012

How You Know They’ve Run Out Of Arguments

Steven over at WWJTD informed me of this nonsense: The newest argument against homosexuality has arrived. It turns out it prevents straight dudes from being friends. Trevin Wax at The Gospel Coalition explains: “But there is no such thing as absolute freedom when it comes to sexuality. The moment we celebrate or endorse certain behaviors, we curtail freedom …

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Jul 12 2012

Why Dan Savage Shouldn’t Use Hate Speech Against Gay Republicans

I’ve got a post up at In Our Words today! Here’s a preview. A few weeks ago, an organization of conservative LGBT folks and their allies called GOProud endorsed Mitt Romney for president. Surprise, surprise: a conservative group endorsing a conservative presidential nominee. Dan Savage, however, was apparently irritated enough by this to comment on …

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Apr 25 2012

Urban Outfitters' Possibly-Accidental Holocaust Reference

Aside from perhaps American Apparel, there might not be any clothing retailer that people love to hate more than Urban Outfitters. This time, UO has angered the Jewish community by selling a t-shirt that seems made to resemble the patches that Jews were forced to wear on their clothes during the Holocaust: The Anti-Defamation League …

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