Archive for May 1st, 2006

The Power of Word Choice Quantified

| May 1, 2006 | Reply
The Power of Word Choice Quantified

We’ve often heard of the “War on Terror.” How much public support would this effort have had it been called the “Initiative to Bomb and Shoot People This Administration Deems Bad”?  Not as much, I assume.  Sometimes the titles to laws and policies suggest the opposite of the true effect of the law or policy: […]

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Is Brokeback Mountain a universal story?

| May 1, 2006 | Reply
Is Brokeback Mountain a universal story?

Continuing to sort out my thoughts from the recent Popular Culture Association convention in Atlanta, I recall a discussion about whether the movie Brokeback Mountain told a universal love story or whether the point of the movie lay in its specificity. I think that’s the sort of question which doesn’t have an answer, but can tell  […]

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Memory and Representation, Part 2

| May 1, 2006 | 1 Reply
Memory and Representation, Part 2

Another theme that came up during the Memory and Representation session at the recent Popular Culture Association convention in Atlanta was how using different names for things can shape our memory of events. For instance, labeling people as “heroes” may shift attention away from inquiries as to whether their deaths could have been prevented. I’m […]

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Memory and representation, or what is truth?

| May 1, 2006 | 2 Replies
Memory and representation, or what is truth?

I just (well, two weeks ago) got back from the Popular Culture Association national convention in Atlanta. Anyone who regularly attends academic conferences knows how alternately cutthroat and deadly dull they can be. Well, the PCA was a pleasant exception, with a minimum of backstabbing and a maximum of exchange of ideas. I hope to […]

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I hope Zeus knows what He’s doing.

| May 1, 2006 | Reply
I hope Zeus knows what He’s doing.

Consider the reasoning process of our top leader, who has the responsibility of steering us through incredibly dangerous times.  The following excerpt is from Editor and Publisher: I base a lot of my foreign policy decisions on some things that I think are true . . . One, I believe there’s an Almighty. And, secondly, […]

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Point of Inquiry podcasts now available

| May 1, 2006 | 1 Reply
Point of Inquiry podcasts now available

Point of Inquiry is the Center for Inquiry’s radio show and podcast.  The Center has made available (iTunes or MP3′s) interviews with many of the leading minds of the day including Nobel Prize-winning scientists, public intellectuals, social critics and thinkers. Topics include religion, human values and the borderlands of science. Three major three research areas […]

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