The Curious Relationship between Altitude and Suicide

Does living at a higher altitude affect your mental health? VAndreas/shutterstock.com By Dr. Hoehun Ha / 11.05.2017 Assistant Professor of Geography Auburn University at Montgomery Suicide is one of the top 10 causes of death in the U.S. In the next 20 years, it’s expected to cause more than 2 million deaths per year worldwide, ranking 14th in the world[…]

Degrees of Assimilation

Image courtesy of Light show via Wikimedia Commons, and edited by Shannon Sands By Dr. Mark English / 11.11.2017 Philosopher In a recent essay, Daniel Kaufman recalled the days when he and a couple of friends used to climb through a hole in the perimeter fence of their junior high school on Long Island and have lunch at Andel’s Kosher Delicatessen[…]

Impacts of the Death of Elders and the Young

At the Modern Filial Piety Culture Museum in Qionglai, southwest China, February 2015. Photo by STR/AFP/Getty By Dr. Amy Olberding / 11.20.2017 Professor of Philosophy University of Oklahoma Not long before he died, I sat in hospital with my grandfather, keeping him company as he waited, gowned and gaunt, for whatever the doctors might do. Before[…]

Medieval Monks and Alcohol

Pious drinking. Walter Dendy Sadler via Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Michael Foley / 11.17.2017 Associate Professor of Patristics Baylor University Each year the holidays bring with them an increase in both the consumption of alcohol and concern about drinking’s harmful effects. Alcohol abuse is no laughing matter, but is it sinful to drink and make merry, moderately and responsibly,[…]

How Advertising Shaped Thanksgiving as We Know It

Libby’s continues to fiercely compete with pumpkin pie peddlers Borden’s, Snowdrift and Mrs. Smith’s for a place on the Thanksgiving table. Jean Beaufort By Dr. Samantha N.N. Cross / 11.20.2017 Associate Professor of Marketing Iowa State University I have always been intrigued by Thanksgiving – the traditions, the meal, the idea of a holiday that is[…]

Primate Vocalizations are Much More than Gibberish

Chimpanzees use alarm calls to inform each other of danger. / Ronald Woan, Flickr Nonhuman primates clearly do more than just screech meaningless sounds at each other, but what are the limits of their communication? By Jay Schwartz / 08.25.2017 PhD Candidate in Neuroscience and Animal Behavior Emory University A chimpanzee is strolling along a[…]

The Mystery of a 1918 Veteran and the Flu Pandemic

Beds with patients in an emergency hospital in Camp Funston, Kansas, during the influenza epidemic around 1918. National Museum of Health and Medicine., CC BY By Dr. Ruth W. Craig / 11.09.2017 Emerita Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology Dartmouth College Vaccination is underway for the 2017-2018 seasonal flu, and next year will mark the 100-year anniversary of[…]

Pavlov and His Dogs: How Associative Learning Really Works in Human Psychology

When the ringing of a bell comes to mean something more. Maisei Raman/Shutterstock.com By Dr. Edward Wasserman / 11.16.2017 Professor of Experimental Psychology University of Iowa My ears perked up when, in recent weeks, I heard Donald Trump and Ivan Pavlov mentioned twice in connection with each other. After all, I’m an experimental psychologist who journeyed[…]

Rembrandt – ‘The Jewish Bride’

‘ Rembrandt van Rijn, Portrait of a Couple as Isaac and Rebecca, known as The Jewish Bride, 1665-69, oil on canvas, 121.5 x 166.5 cm (Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam) By Dr. Saskia Beranek / 11.18.2017 Visiting Professor of Art History Duquesne University Portrait of a Couple as Isaac and Rebecca, commonly known as The Jewish Bride, is a painter’s painting. According to his letters,[…]

Teachers Inspire This Cambodian-American Boy to Keep His Traditional Dance Alive

Maddox and his brother in their apartment in Lowell, Massachusetts. / Photo by Heidi Shin By Heidi Shin / 11.14.2017 When the Khmer Rouge took over Cambodia in 1975, the regime carried out a genocide that killed over 1.5 million people and specifically targeted nearly all of the country’s artists and musicians. Very few survived. After[…]

First Detection of Gravitational Waves and Light Produced by Colliding Neutron Stars

In a galaxy far away, two dead stars begin a final spiral into a massive collision. The resulting explosion unleashes a huge burst of energy, sending ripples across the very fabric of space. In the nuclear cauldron of the collision, atoms are ripped apart to form entirely new elements and scattered outward across the Universe.[…]

How to Avoid a Life of Misery

Simple, yet effective, advice for living life to its fullest from Ancient Greek philosopher Epictetus By Zat Rana / 11.15.2017 Could it Really be this Simple? Few who knew Epictetus would have considered him lucky. He was born a slave 2,000 years ago. He lived and died in poverty. He was permanently crippled from a[…]

Prehistoric Humans are Likely to have Formed Mating Networks to Avoid Inbreeding

Early humans seem to have recognised the dangers of inbreeding at least 34,000 years ago, and developed surprisingly sophisticated social and mating networks to avoid it, new research has found. 10.05.2017 The study, reported in the journal Science, examined genetic information from the remains of anatomically modern humans who lived during the Upper Palaeolithic, a period when modern humans[…]

Archaeologists Uncover Rare 2,000-Year-Old Sundial during Roman Theatre Excavation

A 2,000-year-old intact and inscribed sundial – one of only a handful known to have survived – has been recovered during the excavation of a roofed theatre in the Roman town of Interamna Lirenas, near Monte Cassino, in Italy. 11.08.2017 Not only has the sundial survived largely undamaged for more than two millennia, but the presence of two Latin[…]

Ancient Agricultural Trade and Changing Crop Seasons

Barley continues to be the staple diet of people living in this Dolpo Valley of Nepal, a harsh environment at 13,000 feet above sea level. Research suggests that ancient barley cultivation moved into China after being farmed in high altitude regions such as this along the southern edge of the Tibetan Plateau. (Photo: Wikipedia Commons)[…]

Local Pantheons in Motion: Synoecism and Patron Deities in Hellenistic Rhodes

The ruins of the temple of Apollon, Acropolis of Rhodes, island of Rhodes, Greece / Photo by Jebulon, Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Stéphanie Paul / 04.20.2015 Postdoctoral Researcher University of Liège, Belgium Abstract This paper addresses some of the limitations of the concept of patron deity through the case-study of the island of Rhodes after the synoecism[…]