Donna L Akers (Nebraska): Decolonizing the Master Narrative: Treaties and Other American Myths. Gambling on nation-building: Tribes are at last becoming sovereign in more than theory, with mixed results. Jefferson’s Women: Sexual enlightenment and racism in the life of a secular hero. Contrary to popular opinion, publicly-funded assistance for the poor has been practiced in America from colonial days. Philippe Fournier (Montreal): Welfare and Foreign Aid Practices in the Contemporary United States: A Governmental Study. Gordon Wood reviews Law in American History, Volume I: From the Colonial Years Through the Civil War by G. Edward White. A review of The Evolution of a Nation: How Geography and Law Shaped the American States by Daniel Berkowitz and Karen B. Clay. American inheritance, Harvard pulpit: Douglass Shand-Tucci on Boston Brahmin liberalism. From History Now, a special issue on American Reform Movements. From Cardus, a review of Monsters in America: Our Historical Obsession with the Hideous and the Haunting by W. Scott Poole.
A new issue of Disability Studies Quarterly is out. Sabine Weber (Dusseldorf): Corporate Participation in the Democratic Process in the United States and Germany. From The Philosopher’s Stone, Philip Green on religious freedom (and part 2). From Slate, Will Saletan and Ross Douthat discuss Douthat’s new book on faith in American society, Bad Religion. From dictatorship to democracy: A look at the role ex-Nazis played in early West Germany. Turned off from politics? That’s exactly what the politicians want. From Wired, Bruce Sterling on the New Aesthetic. What do debutante balls, the Japanese tea ceremony, Ponzi schemes and doubting clergy all have in common? Daniel Dennett on the social cell. Indignadas and Indignados of the World, Unite: Eric Toussaint on the international context of global outrage (in 5 parts). What do social movements accomplish and how? Humanizing the social sciences: A review of Adventures of an Accidental Sociologist: How to Explain the World Without Becoming a Bore by Peter L. Berger. It’s been one of the enduring mysteries of the massive 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico: Where did all the goop go?
Steven Fink (Wisconsin): For the Best of All Listeners: American Islamic Hip Hop as Reminder. From the International Journal of Social Sciences and Humanity Studies, Sirin Akbulut Demirci (Uludag): Franz Liszt in Ottoman Empire. From Mythological Studies Journal, Kathleen Asbo (SSU): The Lyre and the Drum: Dionysus and Apollo Throughout Music History. A review of Making Noise: From Babel to the Big Bang and Beyond by Hillel Schwartz. The first chapter from Banding Together: How Communities Create Genres in Popular Music by Jennifer C. Lena. Contemporary Christian music is more than "ear candy," worship leaders say. Orchestras (and audiences) get more Asian-American every year — will it be enough? Rock, pop, white power: How music influences support for ethnic groups. The Radical Reggae Moment: A review of The Natural Mystics: Marley, Tosh, and Wailer by Colin Grant. What riot? Alessandro G. Moliterno on punk rock politics, fascism, and Rock Against Racism. A look at why violins cost more than other instruments. A study finds violinists can’t tell the difference between Stradivarius violins and new ones.
Ori J. Herstein (Cornell): Defending the Right to Do Wrong. Francesco Orsi (Tartu): Sidgwick and the Morality of Purity. Ezio Di Nucci (Duisburg-Essen): Self-Sacrifice and the Trolley Problem. From Emergent Australasian Philosophers, Michael Lopresto (Adelaide): The Ethics of Belief; and Samuel Green (Monash): Morality is not Good. Michael Ruse on a Darwinian approach to moral philosophy. From The Philosopher, a review of The Hemlock Cup: Socrates, Athens and the Search for the Good Life. A review of of A Brief History of Thought: A Philosophical Guide to Living by Luc Ferry. From The Philosophers' Magazine, a review of The Ethical Project by Philip Kitcher; a review of Ethics for a Broken World: Imagining Philosophy after Catastrophe by Tim Mulgan; and a mountain worth climbing? Adam Ferner on what the critics say about On What Matters by Derek Parfit. A review of Ethics and Public Policy: A Philosophical Inquiry by Jonathan Wolff. Mark Vernon on Alasdair MacIntyre and the return of virtue ethics. An interview with NYU’s Japa Pallikkathayil on morality and politics. If nature doesn’t give any morally satisfying answer to the question “what is the purpose, function, or end of a human life?” does that mean that only tradition can do so?
A new issue of the New School Economic Review is out. A review of Power, Inc: The Epic Rivalry Between Big Business and Government — and the Reckoning That Lies Ahead by David Rothkopf. From Foreign Policy, supercitizens and semistates: David Rothkopf on the global elites that really run the world (and more). 5-star hotels in 1-star countries: Enjoy your stay at the Serena Hotels, where plush lodgings meet deadly warzones. From Transcript, a special issue on Malta. Non-Monogamy: A surprising perspective from a Muslim matchmaking service. A review of The Age of Austerity: How Scarcity Will Remake American Politics by Thomas Edsall (and more). Simon Blackburn reviews Beyond Human Nature: How Culture and Experience Shape Our Lives by Jesse Prinz. From Governing, when teams leave, what do you do with the stadium? Hemispheric Strangers: Despite many similarities between Canada and Brazil, their relationship has a long way to go. Outlook meets a few eunuchs who have tried to assimilate and lead normal lives despite being perceived as “anomalous”.
David L Eng (Penn), Teemu Ruskola (Emory) and Shuang Shen (Penn State): China and the Human. From the Journal of Democracy, Larry Diamond (Stanford): China and East Asian Democracy: The Coming Wave; and Yun-han Chu (NTU): China and East Asian Democracy: The Taiwan Factor. The Chinese state at work: Christopher Kutarna on the One-Child Policy in restrospect. How does China enforce its One-Baby Policy? For Twin Cities-based Chinese artist Meng Tang, the personal is political. China’s imprisoned Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo asks what a TV miniseries can teach us about the direction of the new China. Is China still a developing country? From LRB, Perry Anderson reviews books on China. David Warsh on translating the Chinese experience: It’s time to sort through the steadily accumulating shelf of books. Richard Wolin on a recent trip to China: “This place is more American than America”. From Migration Information Source, a special issue on migration in the modern Chinese world. Atlas Obscura visits Hong Kong cage homes: Appalling and degrading form of low-income housing in one of Asia's richest cities. What's in a surname? New study explores what the evolution of names reveals about China.
From Symmetry, a look at ten things you may not know about the Higgs boson. What happened before the Big Bang? Ross Andersen on the new philosophy of cosmology. Cosmologists try to explain a universe springing from nothing. Fields apart: A review of The Infinity Puzzle: Physics on the Fringe by Margaret Wertheim (and more). Bryan Gaensler takes a whirlwind tour of the fastest objects in the universe. Physics has taught us to be very cautious about our naive certainties (“that’s the way it is!”), everyday intuitions (“it must be that way!”), and commonsensical rejections (“that’s impossible!”), so when physicists come up with incredible results, what should we believe? From planets to universes: A lecture given by Martin Rees at Stephen Hawking's 70th birthday symposium (and part 2). Philip Plait on a superbly informative beginner’s guide to the galaxy. How do you show everything that has ever happened? A visualisation from the Chronozoom project takes the biggest of big data — the universe itself — and makes it manageable. A box of universe: Watch the cosmos evolve in a cube one billion light-years wide.
A new issue of the Journal of Applied Hermeneutics is out. From the latest issue of the International Journal of Conflict and Violence, a special section on youth and violence, including Josjah Kunkeler (Utrecht) and Krijn Peters (Swansea): “The Boys Are Coming to Town”: Youth, Armed Conflict and Urban Violence in Developing Countries. Once we model the connectome — the million billion points of contact between neurons in the brain — we’ll glimpse the anatomy of the mind. A review of Tejano Empire: Life on the South Texas Ranchos by Andres Tijerina. Is conservatism in crisis?: An interview with Charles Moore: “Capitalism should not be run by capitalists”. George Morelli on Christian belief and the medical establishment (and part 2). Urban-development legends: Mario Polese on how grand theories do little to revive cities. Obama to Cities — Drop Dead: An article on the life and death of a Great American Urban Policy. No parties, No banners: Gianpaolo Baiocchi and Ernesto Ganuza on the Spanish experiment with direct democracy. We're All the 1 Percent: The U.S. middle class is still incredibly wealthy by international standards.
From The Chronicle, can Wikipedia shut down universities? Wikipedia wants academics to write content, and students to fact-check articles for academic credit. Somedays Wikipedia looks like the most extravagant love letter to the humanist project, other days like the biggest ragbag of unsorted intellectual capital. Why not use this vast, untapped ocean of advertising capital to make Wikipedia a reliable, definitive, an everlastingly free resource? Wikipedia didn’t kill Encyclopedia Britannica — Windows did. Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales on the end of Britannica's print version. Former Britannica editor Robert McHenry on the move that's been in the works for over two decades. Britannica is experiencing a "sales boom" after the announcement that they would cease publication of their printed editions. Representing a peak of colonial optimism before the slaughter of war, the 1910/11 edition of Encyclopaedia Britannica has acquired an almost mythic quality among collectors. Why we should celebrate the end of the Britannica’s print edition. David Bell on what we’ve lost with the demise of print encyclopedias. Joseph Bottum on the end of reference. Britannica embraces new strategy with an iPhone and iPad app.
A new issue of Our Planet is out. Burns H. Weston (Iowa): The Theoretical Foundations of Intergenerational Ecological Justice: An Overview. From Ethics in Science and Environmental Politics, a special issue on global climate change and non-violent civil disobedience. From Breakthrough Journal, love your monsters: Bruno Latour on to the question of technology to protect the planet from ecological crisis; and planet of no return: A forum on the Anthropocene, including a lead essay by Erle Ellis and responses. Carbon Copy: Timothy Noah on the best way to fix the deficit — and the environment. Paranoia you better believe: A review of The Global Warming Deception: How a Secret Elite Plans to Bankrupt America and Steal Your Freedom by Grant R. Jeffrey. How engineering the human body could combat climate change: From drugs to help you avoid eating meat to genetically engineered cat-like eyes to reduce the need for lighting, a wild interview about changes humans could make to themselves to battle climate change. Can bioengineers make human beings more sustainable? Nature already tried that, and look how it turned out.