4396 posts tagged with history.
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Whiteness History Month

Portland Community College to launch a "Whiteness History Month." (April to be specific) The American Conservative disapproves: "... plainly designed to convince white students to despise themselves and their culture." The Washington Post hits the ground running with a listicle: Whiteness History Month is a great idea. Here are 7 ways to observe it.
posted by GuyZero on Jan 21, 2016 - 105 comments

So the Wind Won't Blow It All Away - Matador

Matador, Texas is a town on borrowed time. If you're not from there or one of the few similarly sinking small towns scattered across the Great Plains region, you would almost definitely not know that it exists. Its population has fallen from 740 to just 607 in 10 years according to a 2010 census. Of course, it wasn't always that way. A true Texas round-up of links to celebrate the Matador that was and still is before it is gone. [more inside]
posted by Krazor on Jan 20, 2016 - 13 comments

Early Modern English

Shakespeare: Original pronunciation. What Shakespeare Sounded Like to Shakespeare.
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jan 18, 2016 - 40 comments

White ally background material for anti-racism in the US.

Here's a primer for white Americans to learn about race and racism without making their friends/colleagues/acquaintances of color have to keep explaining it.
posted by Stewriffic on Jan 18, 2016 - 14 comments

"Kind hearts are more than coronets."

Peterborough & The Great War. At the Peterborough (UK) East Railway Station during 1916 and 1917, the Women’s United Total Abstinence Council ran a tea stall. There were two visitors books there signed by the soldiers travelling to and from the various fronts during World War I which have been digitised for the website. [more inside]
posted by Zack_Replica on Jan 14, 2016 - 14 comments

The Preservation Of A Nation

Robbie Judkins visits Tanzania to witness first hand the attempt to save a quarter of a century of musical history from oblivion. Listen to an exclusive mix of tracks newly digitized by the Tanzania Heritage Project
posted by infini on Jan 13, 2016 - 5 comments

First X, Then Y, Now Z : Landmark Thematic Maps and Their Makers

This section reads as would a biblical genealogy of sorts: Alexander von Humboldt (wiki) taught Heinrich Berghaus (short wiki bio)and influenced Alexander Keith Johnston; Berghaus taught August Petermann (wiki); and Petermann collaborated with Berghaus and Johnston. More accurately, it reflects the passing on of the thematic torch lit by Humboldt. There were isolated “ignitions” throughout Europe before him—he, of course, was not the first to construct a thematic map or even to think of how one might do it—but every science needs a founding figure. More than anyone who preceded him, Humboldt provided that role.
Landmark Thematic Atlases, from Princeton University Library's Historic Maps Collection website of Landmark Thematic Maps.
posted by filthy light thief on Jan 11, 2016 - 2 comments

The great British curry crisis

The high-street staple is under threat. Can a new generation of entrepreneurs save the nation’s tandoori?
posted by infini on Jan 9, 2016 - 100 comments

Blood-Bought Sweets

Quakers pioneered social enterprise. They were also the first to fail: How hard was it to opt out of the slave economy in the U.S. before the Civil War? Pretty hard, as the "free produce" movement discovered: In 1829... the members of [the Female Association for Promoting the Manufacture and Use of Free Cotton] reported their contractors had spun 2,515 pounds of cotton. Compared to the approximately 78 million pounds of cotton produced across the country in the year 1800 alone, it was a drop in the bucket. The economics of slavery previously.
posted by Cash4Lead on Jan 7, 2016 - 12 comments

The age of uncle books

Why do male authors and subjects dominate history books? Digging into bestselling history books in the United States. (SLS) [more inside]
posted by doctornemo on Jan 6, 2016 - 30 comments

The State of the HIV Epidemic

"This summer will mark 35 years since the first reports of AIDS. Additionally, two decades have now passed since combination antiretroviral treatment began to transform a health crisis into a more manageable public health concern. " [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Jan 6, 2016 - 7 comments

Rules for Duels

The Code of Honor; or Rules for the Government of Principals and Seconds in Duelling by John Lyde Wilson 1858. (via Chief Justice John Roberts)
posted by caddis on Jan 5, 2016 - 29 comments

The forgotten slaves of Tromelin Island

On July 31, 1760, L'Utile, a ship of the French East Indian Company loaded with an illegal cargo of about 160 Malagasy slaves, was shipwrecked on a barren, windswept islet now known as Tromelin Island, 500 km east of Madagascar. The French crew, with the help of the surviving Malagasy, built a makeshift boat and set sail for Madagascar two months later, leaving behind 60 Malagasy with three months’ provisions, a letter recognising their good conduct and the promise that someone would come back for them. Weeks passed, then months, then years. Since 2006, archeological teams have gone to Tromelin to examine the wreck site and learn about the lives of the marooned Malagasy: diary of the 2010 campaign. [more inside]
posted by elgilito on Jan 5, 2016 - 8 comments

Ask Historians. It's not just for breakfast.

Reddit's /r/askhistorians "Best of 2015" thread is something you'll learn from, maybe. Probably the most rigidly moderated subreddit regarding historical topics, /r/askhistorians has some of the smartest answers you'll find to some of the most unusual questions they answered in 2015. Check the thread for questions answered in earlier years.
posted by disclaimer on Jan 4, 2016 - 19 comments

Memory, Law, and Recording

Sci-Fi Author (and Metafilter's own) Charlie Stross has an interesting thought experiment: Could you get to a technological society without the use of writing? And if so, what would that look like?
posted by The Whelk on Jan 3, 2016 - 58 comments

I love you madly

New book shows Marie Antoinette used invisible ink, secret stamps in love letters to Swedish count Touched on somewhat less sensationally in this article: From letters to apps, the secret code language of lovers [more inside]
posted by Michele in California on Jan 2, 2016 - 12 comments

215 Of The Best Longreads Of 2015

215 Of The Best Longreads Of 2015 [more inside]
posted by triggerfinger on Jan 1, 2016 - 19 comments

A not so long time ago in a galaxy not so far away ...

Mike Duncan of the Revolutions podcast reworked the Star Wars prequel trilogy by way of the American and French revolutions on Twitter today. Episode One: The Glorious Cause, Episode Two: The Coruscant Revolution, and Episode Three: The Clone Wars have been storified for your historical Star Wars mashup needs.
posted by immlass on Dec 31, 2015 - 6 comments

Protected Views of London

St Paul's Cathedral, designed by Sir Christopher Wren, lies at the centre of London. At 365 feet high, it was the tallest building in London from 1710 until 1962, and dominated the London skyline. Since the 1960s London has seen multiple high-rise developments, which could crowd out the cathedral. However, views of St Paul's from multiple places in and around the City are preserved by law. This protects St Paul's both from having tall buildings built in front of it, and also behind it in ways that would spoil the silhouette on the horizon. The 'Cheesegrater' for instance, slopes back to protect one such view. Some explanations and demonstrations from Tom Scott, Londonist, and The Guardian. [more inside]
posted by carter on Dec 30, 2015 - 21 comments

Participation in our own surveillance was the price of entry into heaven

Under Watchful Eyes: The medieval origins of mass surveillance. [Via] [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Dec 28, 2015 - 11 comments

Short History of the Weirdly Awesome Microcars of Hungary

Hungarian inventions that have shaped the modern world: Laszlo Biro's ballpoint pen, the telephone exchange and holography, and the Magyar microcar, "how Hungary circumvented Stalin and also had a bit of fun." This is just one of a number of weirdly awesome microcars of Hungary from the 1940s and '50s.
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 26, 2015 - 39 comments

Continuous Until 4 AM

Photos of everyday life in 1950s NYC found in an attic decades later.
posted by The Whelk on Dec 26, 2015 - 41 comments

Making the history of 1989

The night that the Berlin Wall collapsed was certainly one of the most dramatic moments in the cascading events of 1989, events that brought the era of Communist rule in Eastern Europe to a close. What follows is an examination of the intersecting developments that led to the collapse of the Communist regimes in 1989. [more inside]
posted by infini on Dec 24, 2015 - 14 comments

Atlanta: Darker Than Blue

Atlanta: Darker Than Blue presented by Black Vrchives, November 2015. A curated journey through Atlanta's history. [more inside]
posted by ob1quixote on Dec 23, 2015 - 6 comments

Social Science and Foreign Affairs

The history of the relationship between social science and foreign relations offers important insights into the changing politics and ethics of expertise in American public policy.
posted by infini on Dec 22, 2015 - 1 comment

Family Secrets and Secret Families: the Hidden Jews of New Mexico

Following the Christian Reconquest and unification of Spain, concluded with the marriage of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile, the victorious Catholic sovereigns decreed on March 31, 1492 that all Jews convert to Christianity or leave Spain by the last day of July. Whether they stayed or left, many Jewish families continued to practice their faith in secret. Such crypto-Jews passed their traditions down the generations and around the world, some ending up in the Southwest. 500 years later, New Mexico's "hidden Jews" were found among strong Hispanic Catholic communities. Though some were skeptical about the origins of certain family practices, additional research and a pattern of breast cancer lead to genetic testing and confirmation of prior beliefs. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 21, 2015 - 14 comments

April, 1561: Florida man leaves "priceless" artifacts in empty lot

The site of the Tristán de Luna colony has reportedly been found in Pensacola: "'There were 1500 people there ... for about a two-year period' ... The colony lasted from 1559-61 and included 550 Spanish soldiers, about 200 Aztecs and an unknown number of African slaves ... The Luna colony is arguably the first European settlement and unquestionably the oldest multi-year European settlement" in the present-day United States. Just two years ago, the site of a 1567 fort built by the Juan Pardo expedition in western North Carolina [NYT] was confirmed as well. [more inside]
posted by Wobbuffet on Dec 21, 2015 - 16 comments

Mincemeat, no I mean real mincemeat

Around Christmas weird vestigial foods reappear. Fruitcake, eggnog, and weirdest and in America all but forgotten: mincemeat pie. The modern take is a sort of sugary glop made by grinding dried fruit, leaving even the homemade stuff mostly miserable and pointless. But it wasn't always like that way as the late (previously) Cliff Doerksen noted. [more inside]
posted by sotonohito on Dec 20, 2015 - 85 comments

Change The Bee You Wish To See In The World

Breeding Improved Honey Bees was originally printed in 1951, in The American Bee Journal. It is an informative and often dryly amusing introduction to the history and arts of bee breeding. "The honey bee has a definite place in our modern world. Its products of honey and wax are useful to man, although perhaps not essential to all men." Those histories and arts are, as you might expect, covered in bees.
posted by Jon Mitchell on Dec 19, 2015 - 7 comments

“Hitler has only got one ball,”

Hitler really did have only one testicle, German researcher claims. [The Guardian]
The song sung in schoolyards by generations of British children mocking Adolf Hitler for only having “one ball” might be accurate after all. A German historian has unearthed the Nazi leader’s long-lost medical records, which seem to confirm the urban legend that he only had one testicle. The records, taken during a medical exam following Hitler’s arrest over the failed Beer hall putsch in 1923, show that he suffered from “right-side cryptorchidism”, or an undescended right testicle. Notes written by Dr Josef Steiner Brin, the medical officer at Landsberg prison, state “Adolf Hitler, artist, recently writer” was otherwise “healthy and strong”.
posted by Fizz on Dec 19, 2015 - 51 comments

"...thou shalt not be a bystander" ― Yehuda Bauer

Hollywood's Last Survivors [more inside]
posted by zarq on Dec 17, 2015 - 3 comments

A brief history of sending letters to Santa

Children have been sending letters to Santa for well over a century now, and for much of that time those letters don't look very different from today's. Children want toys, and they want to convince Santa that they ought to get them. But where did that tradition come from, and how did it develop into its modern form? How did we come to believe that Santa lives at the North Pole and that the postal service can carry letters to Santa? What kinds of things have changed in the things children ask for over time? The Smithsonian's trying to deliver some answers for the holidays. (Previously: 1, 2).
posted by sciatrix on Dec 16, 2015 - 7 comments

Abandon hope

12 Digital Research Suggestions on the History of Modern Britain & the British Empire
posted by infini on Dec 16, 2015 - 1 comment

The history of lesbian slang--or the absence thereof

Last week, the BBC radio programme Woman’s Hour ran an item on the American documentary film "Do I Sound Gay?" The film explores what’s popularly known as ‘the gay voice’, a way of speaking that identifies a man as gay (though not all gay men have it, and some men who do sound gay are actually straight). The Woman’s Hour feature ranged more widely over the subject of gay language, including a lengthy discussion of Polari (previously: 1, 2). But it was all about the boys–-until, towards the end of the item, the presenter broached the inevitable question: do lesbians also have a language of their own? Nothing comparable to Polari--but we do have some historical evidence of in-group lesbian slang.
posted by sciatrix on Dec 15, 2015 - 15 comments

Madonna, Christ and Mughal Paintings

The paintings commissioned by Akbar and Jahangir were a blend of Western iconography with Indian and Islamic elements. [more inside]
posted by infini on Dec 15, 2015 - 11 comments

Clowns Vs. Firefighters, Toronto Edition

If one year during the Toronto International Film Festival you’re engaging a Hollywood producer in conversation and have only a few seconds to pitch your action script before the bouncers drag you out from under the door of her bathroom stall, just fire off a three-word description of the two unlikely antagonists. Hollywood loves oddball enemies even more than unlikely buddy cops: cowboys versus aliens, mercenaries versus dinosaurs, Predators versus future governors of American states. Yet, inexplicably, no movie has been made of Toronto’s contribution to the genre: clowns versus firefighters.
posted by jason's_planet on Dec 13, 2015 - 8 comments

Little slice of U.S. history: 19th century divorce

Before "no-fault" divorce laws were enacted in the U.S., married persons seeking divorce had to prove grounds for divorce under extremely narrow circumstances. In the late 19th century, divorce laws were more permissive in some parts of the country than others, leading to a form of "divorce tourism". [more inside]
posted by cynical pinnacle on Dec 12, 2015 - 23 comments

Iron Age poetry in motion

Animation of the warrior plate of the Gundestrup Cauldron, the largest surviving example of European Iron Age silver work.
posted by immlass on Dec 12, 2015 - 8 comments

Your Right Of Passage

Neil Kaplan is fascinated by the stories told by old passports, especially those relating to the Holocaust, and the resonance they have for today's immigrants and refugees. "It seems strange to admit that in 2015, the right to exist in certain physical spaces on Earth—spaces bound by imaginary lines drawn on maps by our governments—can be prevented by a pocket-sized paper travel document."
posted by ChuraChura on Dec 10, 2015 - 15 comments

גם זו לטובה

Judaism's core texts grew out of millennia-long conversations and arguments across generations, with interconnected dialogues, source citing and (re)interpretation. Now, it's all going digital: Sefaria is creating a massive public domain, interactive "living library of Jewish texts and their interconnections, in Hebrew and translations." Their goal is to build a reference resource and community that "gives a better learning experience than anything that comes before it," from ancient to modern texts and "all the volumes of commentary in between." Read texts, browse submitted public source sheets on dozens of topics or visualize associations between texts.
posted by zarq on Dec 7, 2015 - 22 comments

Ark and flood in one package

The US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) was established in 1961 and has grown into one of the US government’s largest intelligence organizations. It employs 17,000 people, including thousands stationed overseas, and its 2013 fiscal year budget request was for $3.15 billion. Yet, the DIA is also one of the more secretive agencies in the U.S. intelligence community, regularly denying access to basic information about its structure, functions and activities. On November 20, the National Security Archive posted a new sourcebook of over 50 declassified documents that help to illuminate the DIA’s five-decades-long history. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Dec 4, 2015 - 20 comments

Walking on Tigers' Tails

“The distance between the station and the train was accurately measured ... I was not nervous as it approached and I leaped without hesitation,” she recalled. She landed safely, but the rocking motion of the train rolled her straight toward the end of the car. Just before being pitched off, “I caught hold of an air vent and hung on.” Then, with a sense of the dramatic, silent film actress Helen Gibson let her body “dangle over the edge to increase the effect on the screen.” [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Dec 4, 2015 - 5 comments

oldweb.today

Surf The Old Web! [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Dec 4, 2015 - 19 comments

"Had we ten Hands . . ."

In 1739, an English washer-woman named Mary Collier published a long poem called "The Woman's Labour" about the difficulties faced by working women. Her poem was a response to The Thresher's Labour by Stephen Duck, which mocked the poetic conceit that agricultural workers spend a pleasant time in nature, and took a few pot shots at women along the way: "Ah! were their Hands so active as their Tongues/ How nimbly then would move the Rakes and Prongs?" Collier refutes Duck's criticisms and describes women's added labour: [more inside]
posted by yarntheory on Dec 2, 2015 - 11 comments

Modernistmas

Modernist gingerbread houses | More | Ginger Bauhaus | Architectural 3-D ginger cookie | The history of using gingerbread at Christmas with recipes.
posted by nickyskye on Dec 1, 2015 - 16 comments

Say Hello To My Little House

The four-bedroom/nine-bath house at 631 Parra Grande Lane in Montecito has been sold. Built on ten acres in 1906, El Fureidis--originally called Gillespie Estate or Gillespie Palace--is one of five homes designed by American architect Bertram Grosvenor Goodhue. If you're not familiar with El Fureidis and its long and dignified history, here's a tour, and a video of an infamous owner's wedding.
posted by mattdidthat on Nov 29, 2015 - 31 comments

Lives of Solitude

Ever long to get away from it all? The Hermitary is a web directory for all things hermit-related. Look up local hermits or hermits from lore, literature and history, or discover present-day hermits on the web. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Nov 27, 2015 - 5 comments

ONE, TWO, THREE, FOUR!

Whether you know the basic story or not, you may enjoy Mark Steel's lecture on Beethoven's life for its entertaining (and decidedly informal) presentation.
posted by Wolfdog on Nov 26, 2015 - 7 comments

Links in the Chain

Voices of the Food Chain Farmers are the iconic symbols of the food system, but food production, processing, and distribution make up nearly 15% of the American workforce. Today, StoryCorps and the Food Chain Worker Alliance are sharing videos of conversations from workers in different industrial sectors of the food system, showing how food labor crosses boundaries of culture, language, and experience. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Nov 25, 2015 - 3 comments

The Secret History of the Mongols, updated in musical form and annotated

The Secret History of the Mongols is the oldest surviving Mongolian-language literary work, and is regarded as the single most significant native Mongolian account of Genghis Khan. Linguistically, it provides the richest source of pre-classical Mongolian and Middle Mongolian, and while you can read it in various translations, it can be quite a slog. That's why Mongolian rappers Gee of/with Click Click Boom team up with Jonon to present a musical version of Mongolian History, in Mongolian. Luckily, there are English subtitles to this video, but there's still a gap between knowing the words and knowing what they mean. With that, you can find a collections of links as annotations below. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Nov 23, 2015 - 11 comments

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