Berfrois

Modernity as a Heuristic to Study the Great Divergence

Modernity as a Heuristic to Study the Great Divergence

Kaveh Yazdani, in India, Modernity and the Great Divergence, provides the readers with a case study of Mysore and Gujarat to explain why precolonial India could not experience an economic take-off similar to the one that happened in western Europe.

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How Jung’s collective unconscious inspired Alcoholics Anonymous

How Jung’s collective unconscious inspired Alcoholics Anonymous

According to correspondence between Rowland Hazard and his cousin, he had daily sessions with Jung in Zürich over several months, and stopped drinking...

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Marjorie Harrington on Medieval Soul-Health

Marjorie Harrington on Medieval Soul-Health

The idea of Christus medicus, Christ the Physician, is a commonplace in late medieval religious texts. In Soul-Health: Therapeutic Reading in Later Medieval England, Daniel McCann...

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An anti-fascist language remains elusive…

An anti-fascist language remains elusive…

What to call the rightward drift in politics? Experts quibble: some caution against tossing the “fascist” label around, while others venture bold political and historical parallels.

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Chairman of the Board

Chairman of the Board

Ten thousand years ago, in the Neolithic period, before human beings began making pottery, we were playing games on flat stone boards drilled with two or more rows of holes...

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Chrissy Lau: White Leisure and the Making of the American “Oriental”

Chrissy Lau: White Leisure and the Making of the American “Oriental”

During the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, San Francisco had the popular reputation as a sexually liberal wonderland and an international city. At the same time, during the era of increasing nativism and immigration exclusion...

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Puerto Rico and the Politics of Colonial Migration

Puerto Rico and the Politics of Colonial Migration

On January 8, 2019, in a prime-time address from the oval office, President Donald J. Trump argued that the existence of a “humanitarian crisis” required the funding of a wall on the US-Mexico border.

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Why didn’t they see Hitler?

Why didn’t they see Hitler?

A few weeks ago, a six-thousand-word article in Esquire on the unexceptional life of a white teen-ager in peri-urban Wisconsin generated a furious online backlash.

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How translation obscured the music and wordplay of the Bible

How translation obscured the music and wordplay of the Bible

An essential fact about the Hebrew Bible is that most of its narrative prose as well as its poetry manifests a high order of sophisticated literary fashioning.

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The Lost History of Prosecuting War Crimes by Amy Carney

The Lost History of Prosecuting War Crimes by Amy Carney

Human Rights after Hitler describes the rise and fall of the United Nations War Crimes Commission (UNWCC). But author Dan Plesch did not write this book...

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Julian of Norwich and the Process of Transformation

Julian of Norwich and the Process of Transformation

Julian of Norwich was born in 1342. No stranger to violence and suffering, she grew up in a world ravaged by the Hundred Years’ War between England and France and torn apart...

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Liberalism and Slavery

Liberalism and Slavery

Herman Bennett’s African Kings and Black Slaves is a teaser, an invitation to think through the historiography on Atlantic slavery as a liberal metanarrative...

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Socialist Sex Satisfaction

Socialist Sex Satisfaction

Women's sexual pleasure has rarely been treated as an appropriate subject for economics. Various political theorists have long ruminated on the dubiousness of even naming women’s sexual pleasure as though it were transhistoric...

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Letters from Robben Island

Letters from Robben Island

In a speech he gave after his release from prison in 1990, Nelson Mandela described the triumph of the South African anti-apartheid struggle he had done so much to lead.

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Who killed Luxemburg and Liebknecht?

Who killed Luxemburg and Liebknecht?

Here is a world in disorder,” the chorus chant in an unfinished play that Bertolt Brecht started in 1926, “Who is then ready / To put it in order?” The answer was Rosa Luxemburg...

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Borderlands

Borderlands

Informed by an ethos of transnationalism, Elizabeth Leake’s text aims to blur regional and global histories of the Afghanistan-Pakistan borderlands...

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On Summers in Switzerland and Sheffield

On Summers in Switzerland and Sheffield

In late summer and early autumn of 1765, Rousseau was on the run. He was always fleeing some sort of persecution: at times very real, and legal; at others perhaps more perceived, and highly personal.

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No absinthe, Chartreuse could cure you…

No absinthe, Chartreuse could cure you…

Let me tell you about a color that began as a fabled drink. It tasted harsh and punishing, like medicine. It began as a mythic elixir...

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Ed Simon on Stephen Foster

Ed Simon on Stephen Foster

A baby named Stephen Foster was born, who though white, would grow up harboring the ambition to become the “best Ethiopian songwriter”...

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Reading Lion Feuchtwanger Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Reading Lion Feuchtwanger Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

I was born in Hamburg, Germany, in 1949, so I grew up playing cowboys and Indians with my cousins in the rubble fields of my native city.

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