The Public Humanist

Tag Archives | Public Humanist

I’m Retiring, but I’ve Never Had More Hope for the Future

david tebaldi

Departing Mass Humanities Executive Director David Tebaldi reflects on his career, the state of the country, and the future of the humanities–and offers a number of reasons to be optimistic.

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John Adams & Why Fake News is Nothing New

“Fake news” is all the rage at the moment, but failing to expose it for what it is can have serious consequences for democracy. Take, for example, a campaign scare tactic used in the 1800 Presidential election.

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Death in the Afternoon

The silver Dodge Charger that killed Heather Hayer, allegedly driven by James Alex Fields Jr. in Charlottesville

The bravado shown by white supremacists in Charlottesville this week is supported by the symbols and images of manly Confederate heroes, the same ones that are memorialized in city landscapes and, soon, on popular television.

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Freedom Is Not Free: Examining the Abolition Process in Zanzibar

Zanzibar's Stone Town was host to one of the world's last open slave markets, now memorialized by this artwork that utilizes original slave chains.

In challenging the notion of abolition as the final chapter in a history of slavery, we illuminate the lives of those on the periphery of history whose stories and experiences often go unnoticed.

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Tu B’Shvat in the Anthropocene: Teshuva with the Earth

An almond tree in blossom near Urueña in Valladolid, Spain, during Tu BiShvat. Photo by Nicolás Pérez.

Is it time to apply the Jewish practice of teshuva to environmentalism?

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Nature, Culture, and the Art of Breathing Underwater

Still from The Newsroom: Humans can't breathe underwater

It may be too late to prevent the worst effects of climate change, but even that won’t stop humans from being hopeful and resourceful.

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Time for a Tree and a Rope

Jim Crow is again in the news and in the media on a regular basis, with recent sightings on state judicial and educational perches.

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What is a Terrorist?: The Difficulty in a Definition

Images via Google news

The standards by which we call someone a terrorist may be part religious and racial discrimination; hesitating to label individual or group violence as domestic terror appears wise when looking into history.

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For Equality Only, We Wish to Contend

Betty Friedan, right, and Kathryn F. Clarenbach of the University of Wisconsin at the second annual National Organization for Women (NOW) in Washington D.C. in 1967.

Massachusetts history contains many feminists who espoused full-humanity for men and women as well as equal political, educational, and occupational opportunities, including some early feminists who challenged traditional definitions of gender.

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Disciplining Androgyny: A Brief History of Binary Gender

Intersex bodies photographed

We are witnessing the mainstream arrival of transgender, genderqueer, and other gender diverse people. Along with this surge in awareness have come questions from so many who want help understanding new terms, new ways of thinking about gender, and much more. But, to understand society’s newfound recognition, we must ask, what is gender (identity)?

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