How ‘The Late Great Planet Earth’ Made the Apocalypse a Popular Concern

Hal Lindsey and C. C. Carlson’s The Late Great Planet Earth introduced millions of readers worldwide to end-times prophecy. This book [The Late Great Planet Earth] contains incontrovertible proof that Christianity is the one true way. Everybody should read this. Amazon Reader Review Every 3 years Hal Lindsay [sic] writes a new book denoting how the world will end[…]

Victorian Occultism and the Art of Synesthesia

‘Thought-Forms, a strange, beguiling, frequently pretentious, utterly original book first published in 1901, emerged from a ferment of late-Victorian mysticism.’ “I have always considered myself a voice of what I believe to be a greater renaissance—the revolt of the soul against the intellect—now beginning in the world,” wrote William Butler Yeats to his mentor, the[…]

Tempests and Teapots: Sexual Politics and Tea-Drinking in the Early Modern World

The Boston Tea Party, a foundational moment of political rebellion, was a protest against tea, and tea itself was freighted with sexual meanings. The American Revolution is impossible to understand without food and sex at its center. The Boston Tea Party, a foundational moment of political rebellion, was a protest against tea, and tea itself was[…]

A History of Condoms from Animal to Rubber

Promotion for safe sex by the Connecticut Department of Health Services / Wellcome Collection, Creative Commons Condoms have been with us for thousands of years, but the original condoms probably weren’t all that good for safe sex. Though tortoiseshell, animal intestine and linen have all been used to make them, it was Charles Goodyear’s discovery[…]

Luther’s Musical Legacy is the Reformation’s Unsung Achievement

In the great reformer’s eyes, if you didn’t love a rousing tune you deserved only “the music of the pigs”. Five hundred years ago, Martin Luther triggered what would become the Protestant Reformation with a document protesting corruption in the Catholic Church. At its heart, his Reformation was a movement about the nature of sin[…]

Five of the Most Violent Moments of the Reformation

During the seismic religious changes of the 16th and 17th centuries, atrocities were committed and martyrs were made. It has been 500 years since what is seen as the “start” of the Reformation, when the German monk Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of a church in Wittenberg, challenging practices in the[…]