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A Goode Soop

Cooking In The Archives: recreating recipes from the Early Modern Peroid (1600s-1800s) in a modern kitchen. Not old enough? Then try some authentically medieval recipes.
posted by The Whelk on May 27, 2015 - 41 comments

Emerald. Elegant. Curious. Hidden. Unseen. Dragon. Treasures. Unbound.

The Asians Art Museum is a parody site bringing a cirtical lens to orientalist tropes in art museums, prompted particularly by rhetorical choices of the San Francisco Art Museum's 2009 Lords of the Samurai exhibition [audio]. It highlights the tendency for museums showing Asian art to present their shows as a"a harmless trip to a fantasyland of romanticized premodern Otherness, a place where dreams of Manifest Destiny never have to die?" [more inside]
posted by Miko on May 21, 2015 - 24 comments

How long animals live (in ISOTYPE)

How long do animals live? (via) [more inside]
posted by aniola on May 20, 2015 - 37 comments

The Empathetic Camera

Frank Norris and the Invention of Film Editing: "At the heart of American author Frank Norris’ gritty turn-of-the-century fiction lies an essential engagement with the everyday shock and violence of modernity. Henry Giardina explores how this focus, combined with his unique approach to storytelling, helped to pave the way for a truly filmic style."
posted by Rumple on May 20, 2015 - 2 comments

A Broad Box Labeled "Beautiful Things"

For tens of thousands of years, wild horses have inspired humans - to nurture, to create, to slaughter - culminating in the past century of America’s legal and psychological battles over the horses we can’t own. [more inside]
posted by erratic meatsack on May 19, 2015 - 23 comments

"their intimate, closely guarded songs from home, camp and ghetto"

The Stonehill Jewish Song Collection is a website by the Center for Traditional Music and Dance containing songs sung by Jewish refugees in Hotel Marseilles in New York in 1948. All songs include the original lyrics and translations into English. Not all the songs have been digitized and translated already, but there is a variety of themes already, with more on the way soon. The songs were collected and recorded by Ben Stonehill who went to the refugees and asked them to sing anything they like.
posted by Kattullus on May 17, 2015 - 5 comments

Her legacy is rooted in resisting the foundation of American capitalism.

Keep Harriet Tubman – and all women – off the $20 bill. "Harriet Tubman did not fight for capitalism, free trade, or competitive markets." [more inside]
posted by NoraReed on May 14, 2015 - 66 comments

The Texas Instruments TMX 1795: the first, forgotten microprocessor

In the late 60's and early 70's, the technology and market were emerging to set the stage for production of monolithic, single-chip CPUs. In 1969, A terminal equipment manufacturer met with Intel to design a processor that was smaller and would generate less heat than the dozens of TTL chips they were using. The resulting design was the 8008, which is well known as the predecessor to the x86 line of processors that are ubiquitous in desktop PC's today. Less well known though, is that Texas Instruments came up with a competing design, and due to development delays at Intel, beat them to production by about nine months. [more inside]
posted by ArgentCorvid on May 11, 2015 - 17 comments

changing from a 'bad' man to a 'good' woman

"D’Eon exploited this remarkable situation to transition to womanhood, getting both the English and French governments to declare that 'Monsieur d’Eon is a woman.' The press closely followed these announcements and, starting in 1777, d’Eon lived her life legally recognized as a woman. In Mary Wollstonecraft’s Vindication of the Rights of Woman, d’Eon is held up as one of the most remarkable women of her century." Transgender celebrities are not new. Just read London newspapers from 1770, The Guardian
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on May 9, 2015 - 8 comments

The Great & Beautiful Lost Kingdoms

Yet to tell the diffusion of Indian influence at this period as two separate processes partially obscures a still more extraordinary story. For it is now increasingly clear that between the fourth and twelfth centuries the influence of India in both Southeast and Central Asia, and to some degree also China, was comparable to the influence of Greece in Aegean Turkey and Rome, and then in the rest of Europe in the early centuries BC. From the empire of the Gupta dynasty in the north and that of the Pallava dynasty in the south, India during this period radiated its philosophies, political ideas, and architectural forms out over an entire continent not by conquest but by sheer cultural sophistication.
posted by infini on May 9, 2015 - 21 comments

A 1690s advice column

A 1690s advice column
posted by deathpanels on May 7, 2015 - 51 comments

I think that splotch was Tabasco

" “I tell my daughters that when I go, they’ll know the good recipes from the dirty pages.” [NYT]] A group of Nashville writers mounts an exhibit of the dirty pages from their own family cookbooks.
posted by Miko on May 6, 2015 - 21 comments

America's Music Triangle

A new approach to framing and promoting the South's music heritage...but they left out Bristol!
posted by mmiddle on May 5, 2015 - 6 comments

Rated R but for the bleeps

Last December, we (The Dissolve) ran an excellent essay from familiar face Chris Klimek on the regrettable history of the PG-13 rating. He explained how the huge gulf in content between PG and R films necessitated the creation of a middle ground. The PG-13 rating was created expressly to attend to that problem, but that created a handful of problems all its own… Animator Mack Williams cooked up the video below, which reshapes Chris’ essay into a snappy, informative, and visually slick cartoon.
posted by Going To Maine on May 4, 2015 - 12 comments

African-American migrants to the Soviet Union

"My father felt that the U.S.S.R. treated him better than America. He was happy here."
posted by the hot hot side of randy on May 3, 2015 - 24 comments

Ancient Mayan Urban Planning

Early Urban Planning: Ancient Mayan City Built on Grid No other city from the Maya world was planned using this grid design, researchers say. There is more background on what was typical on Urban Planning in Ancient Central Mexico.
posted by Michele in California on May 2, 2015 - 3 comments

So many more stories of fascinating and brilliant women to be told

"Every one of these sites is worthy of visiting." Sophia Dembling highlights U.S. women's museums and sites for The Toast. Related: Women in Game Developement, a recently opened exhibit at the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment in Oakland, California. This exhibit features the work of early developers like Roberta Williams, Carol Shaw, Amy Henning, and more — see MADE's webpage for full list and game screenshots.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on May 1, 2015 - 5 comments

Compton's cowboys: the urban oddity of Richland Farms

When [Griffith Dickenson Compton, a Methodist minister and leader of a temperance group] donated his land to incorporate and create the city of Compton in 1889, he stipulated that a certain acreage be zoned for agricultural purposes only -- thus Richland Farms was born.
This isn't such a unique thing, except Richland farms is still focused on agriculture, while the rest of Los Angeles County became urbanized. It's here you can find Compton's cowboys who support the Compton Jr. Posse, which focuses on ranching, riding, education and outreach. And if you watch the rodeo circuit, you might have seen Tre Hosley representing his community. You can read much more about Richland Farms and its residents in KCET's online Communities series.
posted by filthy light thief on May 1, 2015 - 10 comments

Whisk Me Away!

Ever wanted one of those Elizabethan wing-looking collars? If so, the Very Merry Seamstress has you covered.
posted by Peregrine Pickle on Apr 30, 2015 - 8 comments

“Detroit turned out to be heaven, but it also turned out to be hell.”

1967 NBC News Special Report: "Summer of '67"[YouTube]
The 1967 Detroit riot, also known as the 12th Street riot, was a violent public disorder that turned into a civil disturbance in Detroit, Michigan. It began on a Saturday night in the early morning hours of July 23, 1967. The precipitating event was a police raid of an unlicensed, after-hours bar then known as a blind pig, on the corner of 12th (today Rosa Parks Boulevard) and Clairmount streets on the city's Near West Side. Police confrontations with patrons and observers on the street evolved into one of the deadliest and most destructive riots in United States history, lasting five days and surpassing the violence and property destruction of Detroit's 1943 race riot. [Wiki]
posted by Fizz on Apr 30, 2015 - 16 comments

How Baltimore became Baltimore

The Washington Post sheds some much needed, highly relevant historical context on "[t]he long, painful and repetitive history of how Baltimore became Baltimore". [more inside]
posted by ourt on Apr 30, 2015 - 32 comments

Atari Retrospectives: myths and legends from first-hand participants

Why read lengthy articles on the history of Atari when you can hear stories first-hand? Hear Nolan Bushnell (and a few others) tell all about how a little company named Syzygy became Atari, in clips both new(ish) and old; tune in for four episodes of Once Upon Atari, featuring Atari staff reminiscing about the good times and bad; and visit Alamogordo, New Mexico, home of rocket sled land-speed records and the grave of Ham, the first chimp in space, with Zak Penn as he digs for the truth behind the legend of the buried E.T. cartridges in Atari: Game Over with fans and Howard Scott Warshaw, the man who made the Atari E.T. game in five weeks. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 29, 2015 - 11 comments

Gum is the impossible meal.

An Oral History of Radiohead's OK Computer.
posted by kenko on Apr 29, 2015 - 29 comments

The Forgotten Dead

Pennsylvania's oldest and largest is 400 acres. The oldest in New Jersey is now "trapped in the 19th century." NYC turned many into parks. What happens when a cemetery goes under? [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 28, 2015 - 27 comments

Short-Termism, Secular Stagnation and Political Decay

Foundation: Public Goods and Options for the Bottom Billions - "Human beings just don't handle the very long run well" and that's where government increasingly comes in... (via) [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Apr 23, 2015 - 6 comments

"Almost too tasteless for words"

The signature image in Little Boy, a colossal miscalculation in audience uplift, is of the title character stretching out his arms, scrunching up his face, and groaning with intense concentration. Small for his age, hence the nickname, 7-year-old Pepper Flint Busbee (Jakob Salvati) performs this ritual several times throughout the film, always when attempting to move an object with the sheer power of his belief. More often than not, it actually works: Onstage, during a magic show, he appears to slide a glass bottle across a table, Jedi-style. Later, in a far grander display of his apparent gifts, he wows a crowd of skeptics by seemingly creating an earthquake while trying to nudge a mountain. What Pepper really wants, though, is to bring his father back from the war. And so he stands on a dock and points his hands in the direction of the Pacific Ocean, defying the setting sun, focusing all his desire on one point in the distance, until…
Little Boy: The Film That Goes There [more inside]
posted by Iridic on Apr 23, 2015 - 198 comments

Rolling Down to Old Maui

For decades, Maui was the whaling capital of the world. Whalers descended upon the islands in vast numbers as a port of supply and resting in between six-month jaunts to the Arctic North. The Candian and American whalers influenced Hawaiian culture, of course, bringing potato farming and prostitution in their wake. But the transfer wasn't all one way--Hawaiian-born whalers visited Nantucket, and Nantucket papers certainly reported on Hawaiian politics.
posted by sciatrix on Apr 22, 2015 - 12 comments

Cannons on Clark Street

In Chicago's early years, city politics were a dull non-partisan affair. That changed in 1855, when a coalition of temperance advocates and anti-Catholic Know Nothings took advantage of low voter turnout to seize city hall.
Once elected, Mayor Levi Boone and the new council majority hiked liquor license fees while also shortening license terms from one year to three months. Expecting resistance, Mayor Boone “reformed” the city's police force: tripling its size, refusing to hire immigrants, requiring police to wear uniforms for the first time, and directing them to enforce an old, previously ignored ordinance requiring the Sunday closing of taverns and saloons. These were intentionally provocative acts aimed at Germans and Irish accustomed to spending their leisure hours in drinking establishments. [...] Prosecutions clogged the city courts and attorneys scheduled a test case for April 21. This, in effect, scheduled the riot.
Today is the 160th anniversary of the Lager Beer Riot, Chicago's first civil disturbance. [more inside]
posted by Iridic on Apr 21, 2015 - 20 comments

A Beautiful Question: Finding Nature's Deep Design

Frank Wilczek: Physics in 100 Years [pdf] - "Here I indulge in wide-ranging speculations on the shape of physics, and technology closely related to physics, over the next one hundred years. Themes include the many faces of unification, the re-imagining of quantum theory, and new forms of engineering on small, intermediate, and large scales." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Apr 19, 2015 - 11 comments

Isaiah 11:6

"More than sixty years have passed since Israel started its nuclear venture and almost half a century has elapsed since it crossed the nuclear weapons threshold. Yet Israel's nuclear history still lacks a voice of its own: Israel has never issued an authorized and official nuclear history; no insiders have ever been authorized to tell the story from within. Unlike all seven other nuclear weapons states, Israel's nuclear policy is essentially one of non-acknowledgement. Israel believes that nuclear silence is golden, referring to its nuclear code of conduct as the policy of amimut ("opacity" in Hebrew)." A special collection of declassified documents was published by the National Security Archive this Wednesday, that sheds some light on How Israel Hid Its Secret Nuclear Weapons Program.
posted by zarq on Apr 17, 2015 - 138 comments

"Whenever you dig a hole [in Lecce], centuries of history come out"

In 2000, Luciano Faggiano wanted to open a trattoria in Lecce, in the "boot-heel" of Italy. He bought what looked to be a modern building, but he had to open the floors in 2001 to find a leaking sewer pipes that were causing continuous humidity problems. He didn't find pipes, but a subterranean world tracing back before the birth of Jesus: a Messapian tomb, a Roman granary, a Franciscan chapel and even etchings from the Knights Templar. Instead of opening a restaurant, his family has a museum, which is also available to virtually tour on Google Maps.
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 17, 2015 - 13 comments

Utility to Glorious Extravagance

Adrift in a sea of digital apps for every imaginable function, we often feel our needs are met better today than in any previous era. But consider the chatelaine, a device popularized in the 18th century that attached to the waist of a woman’s dress, bearing tiny useful accessories, from notebooks to knives.
--Chatelaines: The Killer Mobile Device for Victorian Women [more inside]
posted by almostmanda on Apr 17, 2015 - 34 comments

They don’t get why someone would care about old photos.

The strange saga of John Rogers, the man who bought the Star Tribune's vintage photo archive
The thought that big-city newspapers like the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press here in Minnesota — and others in Chicago, Detroit and Denver (and 72 New Zealand newspapers) — were willing to hand over (for a nice price) one of their (and their community’s) most valuable historical archives to a character like Rogers is startling in itself, and may explain why so little has been said about the deal.
posted by jillithd on Apr 16, 2015 - 15 comments

Sweeter for its evidence than its tone

Mary Putnam Jacobi challenged Clarke’s thinly veiled justification for discrimination with 232 pages of hard numbers, charts, and analysis. She gathered survey results covering a woman’s monthly pain, cycle length, daily exercise, and education along with physiological indicators like pulse, rectal temperature, and ounces of urine. To really bring her argument home, Jacobi had test subjects undergo muscle strength tests before, during, and after menstruation. The paper was almost painfully evenhanded. Her scientific method-supported mic drop: “There is nothing in the nature of menstruation to imply the necessity, or even the desirability, of rest.”
posted by sciatrix on Apr 15, 2015 - 5 comments

Sailors and Daughters: Early photography and the Indian Ocean

Sailors and Daughters reveals the expansive maritime societies of Zanzibar, the east African coast, and beyond. From the 1840s, cameras traced the international migrations of traders, sailors, sons, and daughters through Indian Ocean ports, continuing trade that dates back over five millennia.
posted by bardophile on Apr 14, 2015 - 9 comments

The fundamental seductiveness of the conspiracy theory

In [Anatoly Fomenko's New Chronology] , the events of the New Testament precede those of the Old Testament—and in any case, most of the stories are concocted to reflect later incidents. Joan of Arc was a model for the biblical character Deborah. Jesus Christ was crucified in Constantinople in 1086. Ancient Egypt, Rome, and Greece were fashioned by Renaissance writers and artists (the time of the Pharoahs, Fomenko suggests, may have lasted into the 1700s). Aristotle instructed Alexander the Great, who was a tsar, in Moscow in the 1400s.
Is Ancient History Completely Made Up By 'The Man'? (Previously)
posted by griphus on Apr 14, 2015 - 111 comments

Girl Guides In War

Girl Guides, known in the US as Girl Scouts, are an organization for young girls founded in 1910. Almost from the beginning they were involved in wartime efforts. British Girl Guides served in World War I as spies for MI5. They also served both covertly and openly during World War II as Resistance members, medical staff, and support staff for refugees. Some of these were part of Guide troops which were stationed in invaded territories, such as Polish members who organized anti-Nazi propaganda efforts and smuggled Jewish children to safety. Others were volunteers who came from the UK to bring medical aid and supplies to care for refugees.
posted by sciatrix on Apr 13, 2015 - 14 comments

Gotta catch 'em all

As an archivist, my ethical duty is to maintain those objects of intrinsic value to future generations. I’ve often found that others assume my profession is focused on facts and figures, the hard data from which a census or otherwise lifeless historical record can be drawn. Such data will inform one on how a people survived. As important as this data is, it cannot tell you how a people dreamed. [more inside]
posted by byanyothername on Apr 12, 2015 - 3 comments

Social Reality

What Russians really think - "Many in the west see Russia as aggressive and brainwashed. But its citizens have a different view." Meanwhile,[1,2] in Moscow and Lviv...
posted by kliuless on Apr 11, 2015 - 52 comments

I was not part of that crowd that he was talking about

Larry Kramer’s The American People: Volume 1: Search for My Heart: A Novel (previously) is now on the shelves. [more inside]
posted by mandolin conspiracy on Apr 10, 2015 - 2 comments

A history lesson & a dress-up game

Janine Harper and Marc Bushelle's photo series of their daughter Lily dressed up as different African-American heroines started as a Black History Month project. All photos are on Bushelle's Facebook page. NPR's Code Switch blog has the first six photos here and two more here.
posted by insectosaurus on Apr 9, 2015 - 5 comments

Nobody is free until everybody is free.

Unsung Heroines provides bite-sized biographies of Black women who changed the world, and is a great way to learn history you were deliberately not taught in school. Women profiled include Fannie Lou Hamer, the civil rights hero who first said "I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired;" Mary Church Terrell, an early advocate for civil rights and the suffrage movement; Melba Roy Mouton, a NASA mathmatician; as well as: [more inside]
posted by Juliet Banana on Apr 9, 2015 - 6 comments

Long live the King of the Delta Blues

There have been only two known photos of legendary blues guitarist Robert Johnson. Now there's a third. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Apr 9, 2015 - 71 comments

Enough with the Marie Curie already!

Today if you ask someone to name a woman scientist, the first and only name they'll offer is Marie Curie. When Silvia Tomášková, director of the Women in Science program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, brings up famous female scientists with her students—and this has been happening since she started teaching 20 years ago—she gets the same reaction: “Marie Curie.” Tomášková always tries to move them on. “Let's not even start there. Who else?” [more inside]
posted by sciatrix on Apr 7, 2015 - 70 comments

🌎? 🎨? 🎌?

Lizardpoint [PREVIOUSLY] used to host a decent amount of geography quizzes. If you haven't visited in a while, though, they've vastly expanded. So yeah, you can still kick yourself for not knowing where "Asia" is improve your knowledge of our great planet — but now you can also: quiz yourself on how to distinguish a stick figure from a the Vitruvian Man about the world of Art; learn to tell one crook from another identify world leaders and historical figures; become an expert in ugly dress patterns vexillologist. There's also weekly Geography trivia, study guides and timelines, and games for those of us who've had enough of being made to feel dumb kids. So prepare to boast about how smart you are in the comments section expand your worldly horizons!
posted by not_on_display on Apr 6, 2015 - 10 comments


In a monumental upset, the Wisconsin Badgers have won the NCAA men's basketball championship. Here's more information and photos from the UW squad's magical season.
posted by escabeche on Apr 6, 2015 - 55 comments

"There is no denying the deliciousness that ensues"

The Curious Evolution Of The Americano
The current approved written history of the Negroni goes like this: Count Camilo Negroni, a supposedly flamboyant Italian gentleman who was obsessed with American culture, walked into a bar in Florence one day and ordered an Americano with gin in place of the soda water.… Now that’s a great story. But it’s a little suspect. Normally, when people substitute something in a drink, it’s a one-to-one substitution. We normally swap vodka for gin. Or lime for lemon. Nobody in their right mind would swap gin for soda water. It’s just not natural. But supposedly that’s what Count Negroni came up with, and he inadvertently spawned an entire category of drinks. The Bijou. The Louisiane. The Tipperary.… But then the story gets even stranger.
posted by Lexica on Apr 6, 2015 - 60 comments

Extreme Makeover: Corset and Bustle Edition

Do you know how to sew or would you like to learn? Have you ever fantasized about dressing like a sans-culotte or a dowager countess? Do you enjoy historical research and like hunting for or improvising archaic materials and accessories? Are you entranced by the costumes on Outlander or, alternatively, are you horrified by the anachronistic use of chunky yarn and clan tartans? If so, historical costuming may be the hobby for you! Historical costumers amuse themselves by creating authentic (to varying degrees) outfits from a variety of historical periods. Bloggers share pictures of their creations, as well as information and ideas about patterns, techniques, and materials. Here are ten historical and costume sewing blogs to follow for inspiration! [more inside]
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious on Apr 4, 2015 - 12 comments

(Financial) Literacy by the people, for the people

Literacy education is not a de facto instrument of personal and economic liberation. The dark side of literacy is social control. Reading can only promote genuine inclusion when people are allowed to engage freely with text on their own terms, and that is not a given. The goodness of literacy ... “depends in part on whether it is used as an instrument of conformity or of creativity.”
Martha Poon and Helaine Olen use the history of traditional literacy to look critically at the notion of financial literacy [PDF, 13 pages], and how hard it is to “teach our way out of population-wide financial failure.” [more inside]
posted by Banknote of the year on Apr 3, 2015 - 19 comments

A Brief History of the ATM

"Never before had electronic equipment been so exposed to the elements. [T]hey could easily jam or run out of product. They could erroneously dispense several bank notes instead of just one—all without the owner's knowledge. They were activated by plastic or paper tokens that would only activate for the operating bank and, in some cases, only that particular bank location. Some banks would keep the token in the machine and return it to the customer (by post) once the account had been debited. As a result, early ATMs were standalone, clunky, unfriendly, and inflexible."
posted by Blue Jello Elf on Mar 31, 2015 - 71 comments

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