Posts

January 17, 2015

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5:19 PM | Sins of the fathers: child sex abuse in the Catholic Church
Francis Beckett in New Humanist: Betrayed: The English Catholic Church and the Sex Abuse Crisis (Biteback) by Richard Scorer. The Devil’s Advocate: Child Abuse and the Men in Black (Devil’s Advocate Library) by Graham Wilmer Priestly sex abuse has done...
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3:24 PM | The Most Annoying People on the Plane starring Sir Patrick Stewart
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3:12 PM | Selected Letters of Norman Mailer: a thrilling and revealing collection
Alexis Forss at The Guardian: Seven years have passed since the death of Norman Mailer, and a campaign is being waged in his name on several fronts. The publication late last year of J Michael Lennon’s authorised biography asked us...
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3:09 PM | ‘A Voice Still Heard: Selected Essays of Irving Howe’
Franklin Foer at The New York Times: “A Voice Still Heard” appears at a relatively inert moment in American intellectual life and, therefore, at just the right time. Though Howe’s reputation dissipated quickly after his death in 1993, he was...
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3:06 PM | ‘When the Facts Change: Essays 1995-2010’, by Tony Judt
Mark Mazower at the Financial Times: Tony Judt was a historian whose journalism includes some of the finest things he wrote. At the time of his death from motor neurone disease in 2010 at the age of 62, he was...
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2:18 PM | Saturday Poem
Gift He said: here is my soul. I did not want his soul but I am a Southerner and very polite. I took it lightly as it was offered. But did not chain it down. I loved it and tended...
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2:01 PM | Among the Disrupted: the state of culture in the digital age
Leon Wieseltier in The New York Times: Amid the bacchanal of disruption, let us pause to honor the disrupted. The streets of American cities are haunted by the ghosts of bookstores and record stores, which have been destroyed by the...

January 16, 2015

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6:42 PM | Culture: A scientific idea "ready for retirement"?
Alberto Acerbi over at the LSE's International Cognition and Culture Instiute, with comments in the comment section by Pascal Boyer (pictured), Dan Sperber and others: Every year the website edge.org asks their panel a general question on science and/or society....
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5:15 PM | Dynamic rendering of the Ackermann function computation, deterministical and random
This video contains two examples of the computation of the Ackermann function by using artificial chemistry. The (graph rewriting) rules are those of chemlambda and there are two models of computation using them. In the first one the rules are applied deterministically, in the order of their importance. The rules which increase the number of … Continue reading Dynamic rendering of the Ackermann function computation, deterministical and random →
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4:17 PM | Being Johnny Rotten
Wesley Stace at The Times Literary Supplement: Lydon the narrator is endlessly self-contradictory – there is no use criticizing the book on the basis of this essential component of his character. He is also abrasive, immodest, given to outlandish claims,...
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4:14 PM | Jeff VanderMeer: The Weird Thoreau
Joshua Rothman at The New Yorker: The three weirdest books I read last year were all by the same writer. His name is Jeff VanderMeer, he’s from Tallahassee, Florida, and he’s the King of Weird Fiction. He writes in the...
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4:07 PM | Richard Estes at the smithsonian
August Kleinzahler at the London Review of Books: Estes is identified with the photorealist school of painting. With their glossy, often hard finish, an almost enamelled quality, and photographic degree of verisimilitude, his work looks at home in that context....
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2:30 PM | Why a Generation of Adoptees Is Returning to South Korea
Maggie Jones in the New York Times Magazine: That night, Klunder and her friends passed plates of bibimbap (rice topped with meat and vegetables), soondubu jjigae (tofu stew) and pa jun (scallion pancake) around the table and ordered bottles of...
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1:43 PM | What meaning can and cannot be: Lessons from real life, Part 2
The problem of fictional discourse -- do statements involving fictional objects have truth-values or are they truth-valueless; if the former, how are these truth values determined? -- is one that goes back at least to Frege (his views on the compositionality of language and what the referent of a sentence is entail that sentences which have non-referring parts have no truth-value) and for which no adequate solution has yet been found, given, e.g., the publication of books such as Tim Crane's […]
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1:19 PM | Roberto Saviano: My life under armed guard
From The Guardian: As a young writer growing up in Caserta, a suburb of Naples, I felt myself getting more and more angry. There was a war going on between two mafia clans for control of the territory, and violence...
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1:11 PM | Looking for the roots of terrorism
Sara Reardon in Nature: In the wake of terrorist attacks last week on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and a Paris supermarket, the world has struggled to understand the combination of religion, European culture and influence from terrorist organizations...
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12:55 PM | Quantum Entanglement & Spooky Action at a Distance
No summary available for this post.
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12:19 PM | Love in the Time of Military Courts
Fawzia Naqvi in Kafila: Pakistan has become a euphemism for insanity. Doing the same thing over and over again and hoping for a different outcome. There are though some incredibly brave, thoughtful, humane and patriotic Pakistani men and women who...
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12:17 PM | Friday Poem
Bloodlines I. Even in the dark, I’m ashamed of my lemon breasts, my peach-fuzzed midsection. I want to go back home to my father. To my bed with the threadbare blanket, the hand-carved cross over the headboard. I want a...
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5:22 AM | Call for Papers: LORI-V (Deadline May 18)
Call for PapersThe Fifth International Conference on Logic, Rationality and Interaction (LORI-V)October 28-31, 2015Taipei, TaiwanThe International Conference on Logic, Rationality and Interaction (LORI) conference series aims at bringing together researchers working on a wide variety of logic-related fields that concern the understanding of rationality and interaction (http://golori.org). The series aims at fostering a view of Logic as an interdisciplinary endeavor, and supports the creation of […]

January 15, 2015

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3:38 PM | LAWRENCE OSBORNE’S THE BALLAD OF A SMALL PLAYER
Paul French in the Los Angeles Review of Books: Every so often, a novel that captures the essence and flavors of the modern China experience is published — yet seemingly totally escapes the attentions of the devoted China reading crowd....
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3:32 PM | The golden ratio has spawned a beautiful new curve: the Harriss spiral
Alex Bellos in The Guardian: Harriss was overjoyed when he first saw the spiral because it was aesthetically appealing – one of his primary aims was to draw branching spirals like you might find in Islamic art or the work...
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3:26 PM | The Palestinians' decision to join the ICC deserves support
Ken Roth in the Los Angeles Times: The Israel exception to Western governments' human rights principles has been starkly on display in the reaction to the Palestinian Authority's decision to join the International Criminal Court. In Washington, Ottawa, Paris and...
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3:07 PM | Best Ever Sherlock Holmes/Jeremy Brett Quotes
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2:58 PM | why john updike loved cartoons
Jeet Heer at The Paris Review: “I can’t remember the moment when I fell in love with cartoons, I was so young,” John Updike once recalled in Hogan’s Alley magazine. “I still have a Donald Duck book, on oilclothy paper...
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2:56 PM | HOLLYWOOD'S MEXICAN WAVE
Tom Shone at More Intelligent Life: Iñárritu is not the only Mexican searching out flesh tones amid the steel of the Hollywood blockbuster. In “Gravity” Alfonso Cuarón signed George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, cast them adrift in outer space, took...
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2:49 PM | ‘Sympathy for the Devil: Four Decades of Friendship with Gore Vidal’
Michael Dirda at The Washington Post: Vidal (1925-2012) was for more than half a century the wittiest gadfly on the American scene, almost a latter-day Mark Twain — but without the lovability of that white-suited curmudgeon. Like Twain, Vidal published...
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12:56 PM | As a Muslim, I’m fed up with the hypocrisy of the free speech fundamentalists
Mehdi Hasan in New Statesman: In the midst of all the post-Paris grief, hypocrisy and hyperbole abounds. Yes, the attack was an act of unquantifiable evil; an inexcusable and merciless murder of innocents. But was it really a “bid to...
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12:43 PM | Making History: First Free Climb of Yosemite's Dawn Wall
Andrew Bisharat in National Geographic: Nineteen days after they set out to achieve one of climbing's most difficult challenges, Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson reached the summit of the 3,000-foot rock known as El Capitan in Yosemite National Park on...
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11:39 AM | Thursday Poem
Expect Nothing Expect nothing. Live frugally On surprise. become a stranger To need of pity Or, if compassion be freely Given out Take only enough Stop short of urge to plead Then purge away the need. Wish for nothing larger...
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