The Nazis as Occult Masters: It’s a Good Story but Not History

Look into my eyes… Adolf Hitler photographed by his personal photographer practicing for public speaking in 1925. / Photo by Gamma/Getty By Dr. Peter Staudenmaier / 06.09.2017 Associate Professor of History Marquette University Maybe it started with Indiana Jones. When Raiders of the Lost Ark premiered in 1981, audiences were treated to the vivid spectacle[…]

Not All Things Wise and Good are Philosophy

Fresco showing a sceptical looking young man with a scroll labelled “Plato”, from Pompeii / Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Nicholas Tampio / 12.13.2016 Professor of Political Science Fordham University I have published widely on Islamic political thought, including an encyclopedia entry on the topic. Reading the Quran, Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh), philosophy (falsafa) and Ibn Khaldun’s[…]

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Japanese Education

On the left, Katsushika Hokusai’s ‘The Manifestation of the Peak’ (1834); on the right, Wright’s rendering of the Huntington Hartford Resort project (1947) © The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Taliesin West, Scottsdale, AZ, Author provided By Dr. Kevin Nute / 06.07.2017 Professor of Architecture University of Oregon To mark Frank Lloyd Wright’s 150th birthday on[…]

Fossil Discovery in Morocco Adds 100,000 Years to Homo Sapiens

Jean-Jacques Hublin, MPI-EVA, Leipzig By Dr. Matthew Skinner / 06.07.2017 Senior Lecturer in Evolutionary Anthropology University of Kent According to the textbooks, all humans living today descended from a population that lived in east Africa around 200,000 years ago. This is based on reliable evidence, including genetic analyses of people from around the globe and[…]

Nevertheless, They Persisted – Women’s Demonstrations in Ancient Rome

The Intervention of the Sabine Women (detail), by Jacques-Louis David, 1799 / Louvre Museum, Paris By Dr. Katherine Huntley / 04.24.2017 Professor of Archaeology and Ancient History Boise State University Protesting was a key part of Roman political life. And protesting was fueled by the fact that the Roman Republic, from its founding in 509BCE[…]

What Can We Learn from the Medieval Attitude to Pagans?

Dante and the Three Kingdoms by Domenico-di-Michelino / Wikimedia Commons By Dr. John Marenbon / 02.23.2016 Fellow, British Academy Senior Research Fellow, Trinity College, Cambridge Visiting Professor of Philosophy, Peking University, China In a world like that of mediaeval Christian Europe, where everyone was a religious believer, how was the moral standing of non-Christians to[…]

Arabic Translators Did Far More than Just Preserve Greek Philosophy

Socrates and his Students, illustration from ‘Kitab Mukhtar al-Hikam wa-Mahasin al-Kilam’ by Al-Mubashir, Turkish School, (13th c) / Photo by Bridgeman By Dr. Peter Adamson / 11.04.2016 Professor of Philosophy Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich In European antiquity, philosophers largely wrote in Greek. Even after the Roman conquest of the Mediterranean and the demise of paganism,[…]

Do You Remember the Ancient History of HIV/AIDS?

Elvert Barnes Photography/Flickr By Ian Lekus / 11.26.2015 How do I teach the history of HIV/AIDS to today’s students? I find myself pondering this question, trying to figure out how to convey the dramatic story of a catastrophic, culturally charged epidemic (one that has claimed nearly 40 million lives) to students for whom HIV has[…]

Why Historians Would Make Bad Policy Advisers

The so-called ‘Thucydides Trap’? US Secretary of State John Kerry addresses Chinese President Xi Jinping, Beijing, 2015. / U.S. State Department By Dr. Neville Morley / 11.02.2016 Professor of Classics and Ancient History University of Exeter ‘My work,’ claimed the ancient Athenian writer Thucydides, ‘was written as a possession for all time, not a piece[…]

Samurai, Spy, Commando: Who were the Real Ninja?

Sketch by Hokusai / Wikimedia Commons By Antony Cummins / 11.25.2015 A few people might know a commando, even fewer might know a spy, yet the ninja, or shinobi, of Japan is both a commando and a spy, an instantly recognisable figure from the worlds of combat and espionage who occupies the borderland between reality and the unreal.[…]

First Complete Genome Data Extracted from Ancient Egyptian Mummies

Study finds that ancient Egyptians were most closely related to ancient populations from the Middle East and Western Asia. / Photo by Will Scullin 05.30.2017 An international team of researchers have successfully recovered and analysed ancient DNA from Egyptian mummies dating from approximately 1400 BCE to 400 BCE, including the first genome-wide data from three[…]

The History of Art and Literature in Urban Contexts

The Roman Forum, by Giovanni Paolo Pannini, 1755 / The Louvre Museum, Paris   By Dr. Markian Prokopovych and Dr. Roey Sweet / 05.13.2015 Prokopovych: Leverhulme Research Fellow, University of Birgmingham Sweet: Professor of Urban History, University of Leicester Abstract Artistic and literary production are not inherently urban processes in themselves but they have always[…]

Hellenistic Athens

The Stoa of Attalos at Athens – a modern reconstruction of the 2nd-century BCE building / Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Charalambos Bouras The Late Professor Emeritus of Architecture National Metsovian Polytechnic School of Athens Introduction The city of Athens was without doubt the most important cultural centre of the Ancient World’s Classical Period. Later, during[…]

The Picts: Seeking Ancient Scotland

Rhynie, Aberdeenshire / Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Joshua J. Mark / 03.18.2016 Professor of Philosophy Marist College Introduction Pictish Burghead Bull, 7th century CE, found in Burghead, Morayshire, Scotland / British Museum The Picts were a people of northern Scotland who are defined as a “confederation of tribal units whose political motivations derived from a need to[…]

Gustav Wunderwald’s Paintings of Weimar Berlin

Gustav Wunderwald, Unterführung in Spandau, 1927 / Neue urheberrechtsfreie Künstler, Neuheiten The Berlin of the 1920s is often associated with a certain excess and decadence, but it was a quite different side of the city — the “sobriety and desolation” of its industrial and working-class districts — which came to obsess the painter Gustav Wunderwald. Mark Hobbs[…]

The Victorians: Time and Space

Lecture by Dr. Sir Richard J. Evans at the Museum of London / 09.13.2010 Provost, Professor of Rhetoric, Gresham College President, Wolfson College Cartoon depiction of Lytton Strachey, a founding member of the Bloomsbury Group and author of Eminent Victorians / Wikimedia Commons ‘The History of the Victorian Age’, wrote Lytton Strachey in 1918, ‘will[…]

Topographic Examination of the Acropolis at Athens

By Dr. Manolis Korres Lecturer in Architecture International Institute for Restoration and Preservation Studies Topography and Excavations Although the archaeological topographic examination of the Acropolis is still continuing in our days, its prime time was the 19th century. Back then, extensive excavations brought to light remains of buildings, signs, countless works of art and a[…]

Scientific Revolutions

The First Thanksgiving, by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris, 1621 / Library of Congress By Dr. Bryan W. Roberts Associate Professor of Philosophy, Logic, and Scientific Method London School of Economics & Political Science The Trouble with Parables We all learn parables along the way to being educated. It’s part of everyone’s intellectual upbringing. The trouble[…]

What is Language?

Image from ACME Squares, Creative Commons By Dr. Carlos Gray Santana Assistant Professor of Philosophy University of Utah Abstract Linguists (and philosophers of language) have long disagreed about the ontology of language, and thus about the proper subject matter of their disciplines. A close examination of the leading arguments in the debates shows that while[…]