The Little Albert Experiment: The Perverse 1920 Study That Made a Baby Afraid of Santa Claus & Bunnies

≡ Category: History, Psychology, Science |1 Comment

The field of psychology is very different than it used to be. Nowadays, the American Psychological Association has a code of conduct for experiments that ensures a subject’s confidentiality, consent and general mental well being. In the old days, it wasn’t the case.


Hear Gandhi’s Famous Speech on the Existence of God (1931)

≡ Category: History |Leave a Comment

A perfect symbol of the mechanisms of British rule over India, the Salt Acts prohibited Indians from access and trade of their own resources, forcing them to buy salt from British monopolies, who taxed the mineral heavily.


The Public Domain Project Makes 10,000 Film Clips, 64,000 Images & 100s of Audio Files Free to Use

≡ Category: Art, Creativity, Film, History, Photography |5 Comments

Sure, we love the internet for how it makes freely available so many cultural artifacts. And sure, we also love the internet for how it allows us to disseminate our own work.


Cab Calloway’s “Hepster Dictionary,” A 1939 Glossary of the Lingo (the “Jive”) of the Harlem Renaissance

≡ Category: History, Language Lessons, Life, Music |3 Comments

The lists are in. By overwhelming consensus, the buzzword of 2014 was “vape.” Apparently, that’s the verb that enables you to smoke an e-cig. Left to its own devices, my computer will still autocorrect 2014’s biggest word to “cape,” but that could change.
Hopefully not.
Hopefully, 2015 will yield a buzzword more piquant than “vape.


Wonderfully Kitschy Propaganda Posters Champion the Chinese Space Program (1962-2003)

≡ Category: Art, History, Science |Leave a Comment

A joint operation of five participating countries and the European Space Agency, the International Space Station is an enormous achievement of human cooperation across ideological and national boundaries.


Three Films Capture 1940s New York, Chicago & Los Angeles in Vivid Color

≡ Category: History |Leave a Comment”

“Citizenship of this city in itself made for a bond beyond class,” writes the redoubtable Welsh writer of place Jan Morris in Manhattan ’45, her book-length love letter to New York City in the immediate aftermath of the Second World War.


Ayn Rand Helped the FBI Identify It’s A Wonderful Life as Communist Propaganda

≡ Category: Film, History, Politics |5 Comments

If you wanted to know what life was really like in the Cold War Soviet Union, you might take the word of an émigré Russian writer. You might even take the word of Ayn Rand, as the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) did during the Red Scare, though Rand had not lived in her native country since 1926.


Watch Art on Ancient Greek Vases Come to Life with 21st Century Animation

≡ Category: Animation, History |1 Comment

Every student of history surely feels impressed by one achievement or another of the ancient Greeks, whether in the field of engineering, art, or the convergence of the two. Even a bored college undergrad in a thousand-seat lecture hall has to admire ancient Greek vases when they pop up in the lecturer’s Powerpoint slides.


How to Defeat the US with Math: An Animated North Korean Propaganda Film for Kids

≡ Category: Animation, Current Affairs, History |2 Comments

Yes, North Korea won yesterday. Threatening 9/11-like violence, the DPRK scared Sony and America’s four largest theater chains into pulling the plug on the release of The Interview. And, just like that, Americans lost their right to watch their own propaganda films — even dumb funny ones — in their own theaters.


Hear Neil Gaiman Read A Christmas Carol Just as Dickens Read It

≡ Category: Audio Books, Books, History, Literature |1 Comment

Image by New York Public Library
Last Christmas, we featured Charles Dickens’ hand-edited copy of his beloved 1843 novella A Christmas Carol. He did that hand editing for the purposes of giving public readings, a practice that, in his time, “was considered a desecration of one’s art and a lowering of one’s dignity.


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