Jorge Luis Borges once wrote of an empire wherein “the Art of Cartography attained such Perfection that the map of a single Province occupied the entirety of a City, and the map of the Empire, the entirety of a Province.[...]
Back in July of 1804, when Vice President Aaron Burr fired a fatal round into the abdomen of former Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton, I wonder which scenario would have seemed more implausible: that these political rivals would one day be resurrected in the form of a black guy and a Nuyorican, or as two young women in revealingly[...]
When his short and (by his own account) often miserable life came to an end in 1950, could the English political writer Eric Arthur Blair have known that he would not just become a household name, but remain one well over half a century later? Given his adoption of the memorable nom de plume George Orwell, we might say he had an inkling[...]
History resounds with events so momentous they can be conjured with a single word: Waterloo, Watergate, Tiananmen, Brexit….[...]
Back before the public came to terms with the grim causal relationship between cigarettes and cancer, smoking was a jolly affair, whose pleasures extended well beyond the physical act.
Smoking was sociable.
Nobody likes a despot — even despots know it. But actually identifying despotism can pose a certain difficulty — which despots also know, and they’d surely like to keep it that way. Hence Encyclopedia Britannica’s Despotism, a ten-minute Erpi Classroom Film on how a country slides into that eponymous state.[...]
Creative Commons image by Rob Bogaerts, via the National Archives in Holland
One of the key questions facing both journalists and loyal oppositions these days is how do we stay honest as euphemisms and trivializations take over the discourse? Can we use words like “fascism,” for example, with fidelity to the meaning of that word in world h
Who wants to be a billionaire?
A few years ago, Forbes published author Roberta Chinsky Matuson’s sensible advice to businesspersons seeking to shoot up that golden ladder.
I’ve heard it again and again. The now President-elect made vicious and belittling attacks on African-Americans, Muslims, immigrants, women, the disabled, etc. during the campaign season (and for several decades before), but he didn’t mean it. And I have many questions.[...]
Earlier this week, we featured the 1950 Superman poster that urged students to defend the American way and fight discrimination everywhere. Today, we present another chapter from Superman’s little-known history as a Civil Rights defender.
The year is 1946. World War II has come to an end.