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19th November


Bibliotheca Schoenbergensis: An Exhibition from the Collection of Lawrence J. Schoenberg. Illuminated books.
'... For three decades, Lawrence Schoenberg has been collecting in an area reserved for the few: illustrated manuscripts from the medieval and early modern periods ...'
'What is most striking about the collection is its breadth. Stretching from the eleventh to the eighteenth century, it includes monastic, university, and lay texts. There are manuscripts not only in Latin and western European vernaculars, but also in Hebrew, Persian, and Arabic. Texts in the collection deal with everything from prayer and liturgy to mathematics and horse breeding. Its codices contain spectacular illuminations as well as utilitarian illustrations. For the scholar, Mr. Schoenberg's collection is a rich banquet at which to dine. Here one can study the contrasts between public and private devotion, the evolution of the school curriculum, the practices of history, and some chapters in a yet-to-be written history of science and technology. '

Race & Slavery Petitions Project.
'In the summer of 1991, Loren Schweninger, a professor of history, began traveling the South visiting courthouses and state archives in search of legal petitions related to race and slavery. He expected to find dry facts buried in legal terminology. What he actually found was a wealth of new information about peoples' lives and circumstances between the American Revolution and the Civil War. The petitions portray, in vivid and personal terms, the contrasts, ambivalence, contradictions, ironies, and ambiguities that comprise southern history. He began a project that became a journey. You can follow in his footsteps.'

Japanese Shunga. Prints - not safe for work viewing.
'In these examples of Japanese shunga we see a great variety of lovemaking techniques, situations, positions and possibilities. Whether heterosexual or homosexual, the diversity of sexual behaviors expressed within this artform offer a glimpse of the sexual freedoms available in previous eras and cultures.'

Trafalgar Online.
'September 2005 marks the 200th anniversary of Horatio Nelson's victory at the Battle of Trafalgar. As part of the national SeaBritain campaign, which celebrates Nelson's achievement and Britain's maritime heritage, this selection of images from the collections at London's Transport Museum's shows how one of Britain's greatest heroes and Trafalgar Square, built in his honour, have come to represent the spirit of London.'

Motel Postcards from the Era of the Open Road.
'Nostalgia for old motels, like most forms of nostalgia, is selective and dishonest. We like to imagine a pure world before the soulless hotel chains took over, a landscape of lovely neon, local charm, and individuality. No doubt this was the case, occasionally, in the 50s and early 60s, but it was only part of the story. Standardization has its benefits. Franchise outfits have their rules. Every Holiday Inn may feel the same, look the same, but you're reasonably sure there won't be bugs in the mattress or Norman Bates peeping through a crack in the bathroom tiles...'

Hero, Hawk and Open Hand. Native American art.
'Hero, Hawk, and Open Hand: American Indian Art of the Ancient Midwest and South explores the themes of a major branch of early civilization in the Americas that is virtually unknown to the public?that of the midwestern and southern United States. The exhibition assembles some 300 masterpieces of stone, ceramic, wood, shell, and copper created between 2000 B.C. and A.D. 1600 and presents them in the context of large-scale plans and reconstruction drawings of major archaeological sites. Sculptural forms embrace a wide range of human, animal, and vegetal motifs, as well as composite imaginary creatures, abstract shapes, and embellished vessels, implements, and items of ritual paraphernalia. '

Seurat and the Making of La Grande Jatte.
' Sunday on La Grande Jatte?1884 is one of the most beloved, famous, and frequently reproduced paintings in the world. Seen by tens of millions of viewers since it entered the Art Institute's collection in 1924, the painting is an icon and a destination in itself for visitors. This exhibition of approximately 130 paintings and works on paper at once celebrates and sheds new light on Georges Seurat?s masterpiece by bringing together approximately 45 of the artist?s paintings and drawings related to the picture?from rich, yet delicate, conté crayon studies to oil sketches on small wood panels to nearly full-size paintings. The exhibition presents some of Seurat?s early works and shows the remarkable transformation of his colors and subject matter around 1883?85, when he started to explore the modern-life subjects, high-keyed colors, and broken brushwork of Impressionism. The exhibition features paintings by Claude Monet, Pierre Auguste Renoir, and Camille Pissarro, all painters whom Seurat greatly admired. These artists? depictions of figures at the seaside, boating, or promenading through fields would resonate in Seurat?s unabashed tribute to modern leisure. Also included are works by Paul Signac and Lucien Pissarro, artists who shared similar interest in the pointillist technique and whose works were featured in the same exhibition that launched La Grande Jatte to a Parisian public.'

Aerospace Design: The Art of Engineering from NASA's Aeronautical Research.

Taoism and the Arts of China.
'The exhibition Taoism and the Arts of China is on view at The Art Institute of Chicago from November 4, 2000, to January 7, 2001, and at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco from February 21 to May 13, 2001. This is the first major exhibition of Taoist art in the United States, showcasing 151 works of art illustrating many facets of the Taoist religion. The exhibition includes paintings, calligraphy, sculpture, porcelain, lacquer, and ritual robes and implements from museums and private collections in the United States, Europe, Japan, China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. These items date from the Warring States period to the Qing dynasty and demonstrate the development of Taoism and Taoist art from its earliest precedents to its "renaissance" in the late imperial age.'

Window on the West: Chicago and the Art of the New Frontier 1890-1940.
'Ambitious businessmen, industrialists, and a hardworking population of laborers made the city the agricultural, livestock, and railroad hub of the nation. Chicago's economic leaders also became its most prominent art patrons, working together to establish powerful institutional networks. These leaders also supported artists who were drawn to subjects celebrating the American West. Without patrons such as Charles Hutchinson, Oscar Mayer, Carter Harrison, and George Harding, and institutions such as the Art Institute, the Newberry Library, the Field Museum, and the Santa Fe Railway, western art would have had little national recognition at the turn of the century. More than 100 works of art?paintings, sculpture, decorative arts, and works on paper?trace the ways in which class, ethnicity, and the city's often infamous politics determined collecting habits and how these, in turn, affected the images that artists used to depict the West, from the rugged cowboys and scouts of Frederic Remington to the abtract desert landscapes and still lifes of Georgia O'Keeffe.'

Ohio State University WebGarden. Horticulture and crop science in virtual perspective.

The Coit Tower, Telegraph Hill, San Francisco. Its history and art.
'It is a matter of historical record that the Coit Tower art project was the prototype for the decade of the New Deal art that followed, 1933-43, halted finally by World War II. Utilizing carefully selected artistic talent, the project provided an iconography of the "American Scene" for the largest of all the art programs at that time, the Works Progress Administration's Federal Art Project (WPA-FAP) which followed a year after the PWAP. '
'The themes of agriculture, education, urban and rural life, social protest, and New Deal Idealism established at Coit Tower were to become the subsequent subjects of those same artists and of others who took up paintbrushes and sculptors' tools under further government-sponsored art programs throughout the nation. '

Philately in Japan. Via Internet Weekly.

Theatre and Sheet Music. Via Internet Weekly.

Meiko Kaji. 'Undisputed queen of 70's Japanese exploitation cinema next to Yumi TAKIGAWA or Naomi TANI, the name of Meiko KAJI has for decennia been familiar to any lover of B – and the cult continues, especially following Quentin TARANTINO's recent threefold tribute to her in the captivating KILL BILL.'
Via Geisha Asobi.

TV Obscurities. Keeping obscure TV from fading away forever. Via Bibi.

Back from the Depths.
'On 24th March 1984 Scream! hit the shelves of newsagents around the world. The fantastic stories within its pages had kids shaking in their shoes in a way no other comic has ever achieved. Then, after only 15 issues, Scream! mysteriously ended. Rumours of strikes at IPC Magazines, the comic's creators, could have been the cause. Declining comic sales in the UK another. Possibly the grizzly nature of Scream! caused hordes of desperate mothers to get the comic banned. Who knows? Maybe a darker mystery is at the heart of this puzzle, a bizarre twist that no one has the answer to. Whatever did happen the fact remains the Scream! was an awesome comic, nearly forgotten forever…nearly, but not anymore.'
Via Bibi.

Ellen von Unwerth. "Ellen photographs women like objects, almost like a voyeur. They're very sexy photos. If you look at her photos, you would say a man made them. I would say an older man who likes young girls." -- Isabella Rossellini.
Via Bibi.

Influence Map of Western Art. Via Incoming Signals.

Artistic Interpretations of Literary Figures. Via Incoming Signals.
Dostoevsky - Madeline L'Engle - Melville

The West Midlands Ghost Club. 'Established in 1991, to study and investigate (alleged) Paranormal Activity within the West Midlands, South Staffordshire and immediate surrounding area.'

The Detroit News: Rearview Mirror. 'Yesterday's news from our archives.'

A Thousand Miles Up the Nile, by Amelia B. Edwards.
"published in 1877, this book has been out of print for several years. I have therefore very gladly revised it for a new and cheaper edition. In so revising it, I have corrected some of the historical notes by the light of later discoveries; but I have left the narrative untouched. Of the political changes which have come over the land of Egypt since that narrative was written, I have taken no note; and because I in no sense offer myself as a guide to others, I say nothing of the altered conditions under which most Nile travellers now perform the trip. All these things will be more satisfactorily, and more practically, learned from the pages of Baedeker and Murray. " - Amelia B. Edwards, 1888.

The 1966 Batman TV Tribute Site.
'Thirty years ago, Americans from all walks of life were glued to their TV. sets watching a brand new show. It took the country by storm and caused Bat Mania. Young and old alike were taken on a roller coaster ride that was called BATMAN'

Isaac Newton. Biography - early life, Principia Mathematica, later life, religious views, Occult studies.
link

18th November


Buddhism - The Art of Asia.
'Having originated 2,500 years ago, the Buddha's teachings have formed the core of the religion known as Buddhism. Over the centuries, Buddhism spread from India into all corners of Asia. As it spread, it transformed into a wide variety of beliefs and practices. The artforms it inspired are well represented in the museum's collection.'

Rembrandt's Journey.
'Dutch artist Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669) had a gift of visual invention that spawned his productive and successful career. A master across three media, he radically redefined the technique of etching by bringing to it the freedom and spontaneity of painting and drawing.'
'Rembrandt's Journey explores the dynamic evolution of the artist's extensive and richly varied work in printmaking within the context of his paintings and drawings. In the exhibition, the three media are alternately presented as intertwined or parallel developments. Following a broad chronological arc, the installation presents certain themes to which Rembrandt repeatedly returned with fresh insights and interpretations: biblical illustration, portraiture and self-portraiture, daily life, landscape, and the nude. His choice of subject matter was unusually wide, and his work demonstrates a Shakespearean mixture of moods ranging from earthy comedy to somber tragedy.'

Jewish Languages.
'The Jewish languages are a set of languages that developed in various Jewish communities, in Europe, southern and south-western Asia, and northern Africa. The usual course of development for these languages was through the addition of Hebrew words and phrases, used to express uniquely Jewish concepts and concerns, to the local vernacular. Due to the insular nature of many Jewish communities, many Jewish languages retain vocabulary and linguistic structures long after they have been lost or changed in later forms of the language from which they are descended.'

The Dalai Lama Foundation.

Guiding Light. Ultra-long-running US soap.
'The series was created by Irna Phillips, who based it on personal experiences in her life. After giving birth to a still-born baby at age 19, she found spiritual comfort listening to sermons by a preacher of a church centered on the brotherhood of man. It was these sermons that formed the nucleus of the creation of The Guiding Light.'
'The radio show's original storyline centered around a preacher named Rev. John Ruthledge, and all the people of a fictional suburb in Chicago called Five Points. The townspeople's lives had revolved around him. The show's title comes from a lamp in his study that family and residents could see as a sign for them to find help when needed. Storylines in this era touched on topics rarely discussed up to that point - character Rose Kransky had radio's first out-of-wedlock baby...'

The Lenny Bruce FBI File.
'Lenny Bruce was born Leonard Alfred Schneider on October 13, 1925 in Mineola, New York. Lenny's first big break occurs in October of 1948 on the Arthur Godfrey Talent Scouts show. The next few years were spent at numerous comedy clubs across the country refining what became known as "sick comedy" routines...'

Fargo.
'Take a look at this picture, and tell yourself that things are better today. Cities today: Big white malls, clean black parking lots with a superstore rising like a cheap brick glacier, fast-food franchises, landscapes indistinguishable from any other city. Bah. I don't want to short-shrift convenience or harangue the auto culture, but they're thin comforts, and they have no weight. You throw out your anchor and it clatters at your feet. This picture shows a town usually used as shorthand for America's arctic gulag, the end of the earth, a distant outpost of igloos and teepees. But tell me this doesn't look like a small civil corner of a long-gone golden time.'

The Newtown Project. The history of a Sydney suburb.
'This web site has been created by volunteers working in the City of Sydney Archives to bring together historical information about the Municipality of Newtown. We hope it will be of information to researchers, local residents and all who have an interest in Newtown. '

Description of Wales.

Ancient China Simplified.

Sex in Cinema. An online history, with images (so not safe for work).

The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory. Sun-spotting.

Mary MacKillop in Portland. The life of an Australian nun.
'Mary MacKillop was born 1842 and was the eldest child of Scottish immigrants Alexander and Flora MacKillop. The y had been married at in St Francis Church, Melbourne had lived in what is now known as Brunswick St Fitzroy.'

The James P. Cannon Archive. American Marxist.
'James Patrick Cannon was born in February 1890 in Rosedale, Kansas (today a part of Kansas City). His socialism came from his father, an Irish republican and Populist who had become a socialist in 1897.'
'Cannon joined the Socialist Party in 1908; he left it in 1911 to join the more militant Industrial Workers of the World. In 1912-14 he was a travelling organiser and agitator for the IWW in the Midwest and during the war he was active in its Kansas City branch...'

Chicago Defender.
'Founded in 1905 by Robert Sengstacke Abbott, the Chicago Defender, for 100 years, has been the voice of the African-American Community in Chicago and across the United States. Using bold headlines and red ink, the Chicago Defender spoke out against lynching, racism, and segregation. The Chicago Defender led the movement known as the Great Migration; promoted the activities of pioneering aviatrix Bessie Coleman; led the charge to integrate the United States Armed Services; and promoted the careers of Poet Laureate Gwendolyn Brooks and renowned author Langston Hughes.'

Joseph Stalin. Online biography.

The Daily Howler.

Try Your Hand at Reading Body Language. 'The smile is a commonly used way of concealing our true feelings. Consider the following three smiles. They represent three types of smiles: Genuine, False, and Contempt. See if you can guess which smile is which.'
link

17th November


The Story of Mankind. A wonderful history of the human race, published just after World War I.

Diary of a Nobody. A Victorian satire in diary form.
"Why should I not publish my diary? I have often seen reminiscences of people I have never even heard of, and I fail to see -- because I do not happen to be a 'Somebody' -- why my diary should not be interesting. My only regret is that I did not commence it when I was a youth. " - Charles Pooter.

More Jataka Tales. Stories of Buddha's past lives.
'The Jataka tales, regarded as historic in the Third Century B. C., are the oldest collection of folk-lore extant. They come down to us from that dim far-off time when our forebears told tales around the same hearth fire on the roof of the world. Professor Rhys Davids speaks of them as "a priceless record of the childhood of our race. The same stories are found in Greek, Latin, Arabic, Persian, and in most European languages. The Greek versions of the Jataka tales were adapted and ascribed to the famous storyteller, Aesop, and under his name handed down as a continual feast for the children in the West,-tales first invented to please and instruct our far-off cousins in the East." Here East, though East, meets West!'

Traces of the Via Domitia. A Roman road in France.

Woody Guthrie. American folk musician.
'Woodrow Wilson Guthrie was born on July 14, 1912, in Okemah, Oklahoma. Describing the small frontier town in Okfuskee County, Woody writes:
"Okemah was one of the singiest, square dancingest, drinkingest, yellingest, preachingest, walkingest, talkingest, laughingest, cryingest, shootingest, fist fightingest, bleedingest, gamblingest, gun, club and razor carryingest of our ranch towns and farm towns, because it blossomed out into one of our first Oil Boom Town ..."

Roads to the Future.
Highway and transportation history - mainly Washington DC, Virginia, Maryland.

Lilly Christine.
'There's not much for me to say about Lilly Christine, because I know so little. I know that she is all over pin up magazines from the 50's, she was known as "The Cat Girl", she is one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen, and she danced primarily in New Orleans at Louis Prima's 500 club. I have been told that she comitted suicide in the 60's. An interview of Linda Bridgette, her successor at 500 Club, says she died of peritonitis. According to the Internet Movie Database, she appeared in 4 movies. Although she is often confused with and overshadowed by Lili St. Cyr, Lilly Christine was a true original, a glamour girl for the exotica age, and photos of her are still an exciting find for pin-up enthusiasts. '

Primo Levi's Last Moments.
'Sometime after 10:00 a.m., Saturday, April 11, 1987, on the third floor of a late-nineteenth-century building in Turin, the concierge rang the doorbell of Primo Levi's apartment. Levi-research chemist, retired factory manager, author of our most humanly compelling accounts of the Holocaust-had been born in that apartment 67 years earlier. He opened the door and collected his mail from the concierge like every other day. He was wearing a short-sleeve shirt. He smiled, thanked her as usual, and closed the door. The concierge descended on foot the ample spiral staircase occupied in the middle by a caged elevator. She had barely reached her cubicle on the ground floor, she later told the police, when she heard Levi's body hit the bottom of the stairs by the elevator. It was 10:20. A dentist who lived in the building heard her screams. He immediately saw, he subsequently reported, that Levi was dead...'

Leonardo. Leonardo da Vinci - life and work, machines, manuscripts, etc.

Migratory Birds. With a featured 'bird of the month'.

You've Got Buckley's. 'In 1835 William Buckley appeared at the camp site of John Batman's Port Phillip Association with a party of aboriginals who had told him about the sighting of a ship at Indented Heads...'
'... He had been sentenced to imprisonment at the age of 20 in 1802 for stealing a bolt of cloth. He escaped from Sullivan's Bay, near the Port Phillip Bay heads in 1803. Believing Sydney to be somewhere to the North, perhaps 500 miles away William Buckley made his escape with five companions at 9pm on 27th December, 1803.'

The Russia Project. Radio and online stories a decade after the Soviet Union.

William Penn: The Fruits of Solitude. 'The aphorisms of the founder of Pennsylvania published anonymously so as not to be reimprisoned for disloyalty epitomize the simple Quaker truths upon which the Republic would be based.'

Founding Fathers and Presidents of the Republic of China (Taiwan). Biographies of Sun Yat-sen and Chiang Kai-shek and others, including calligraphic works.

Presidents of the United States. Online biographies of every president.

Fairground Heritage. 'Fairs were the main focal point of commerce in the UK for hundreds of years before the industrial revolution, and many can trace their origins back to charters and privileges granted in medieval times...'

Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations, 1989.
'The 2,100 entries in this eminently researched collection form the constellation of collected wisdom in American political debate. In fulfilling decades of requests from Members of Congress for citation of quotations, the Library of Congress compiled the most frequently asked questions of the legislature for the edification of every citizen.'

Mulholland Drive.
'...However, the film has gained cult status in recent times with many interpretations floating on the internet about the film's meaning and symbolism. Lynch, as usual for his works, has not given any explanations about the film's "true meaning". The US and UK DVD release does contain 10 clues from the director on the inner sleeve, but this has only promoted further speculation about the mysteries of the film.'
link

16th November


Encyclopaedia Estonica. Estonia on the Internet.
'Atika, Kapri, Borodino, Soodoma, Kosova, Pariis - historical places of the world? No, just some village names from Estonia. '

Gig Posters.

Gloria Swanson. Silent movie star.
More.

Genghis Khan: Treasures of Inner Mongolia.
'In 1206, a man known as Temujen was crowned Genghis Khan - "emperor of all emperors". His mounted Mongol army swept out of the steppes of Asia in an apocalyptic wave to conquer two thirds of the known world. Recent finds in the arid lands of Inner Mongolia are casting a new light on Genghis Khan. Although he was a conquering emperor, Genghis Khan was also a supreme military strategist and clever politician. He was the product of a rich cultural and artistic heritage dating back 6000 years. '

Bye Bye Blackboard... From Einstein and Others.
'Blackboards were wiped after use: they were meant for immediate communication, not for record. Even as they were being used, their messages were continuously revised, erased and renewed. But when Einstein came to Oxford in 1931, he was already an international celebrity. After one of his lectures a blackboard was preserved and has become a kind of relic. It is the most famous object in this Museum. '
'This exhibition marks the centenary of the Special Theory of Relativity by inviting a number of well-known people in Britain today to chalk on blackboards the same size as Einstein's. All these guest blackboards have been prepared in the early months of 2005. The result is an exhibition about science, art, celebrity and nostalgia. The blackboard is fast disappearing from meetings, classes and lectures: 'bye-bye blackboard'. '

Feeding America: The Historic American Cookbook Project.

The Romanovs: Their Empire, Their Books. The political, religious, social and cultural life of Russia's imperial family.

The Cathedral of Magdeburg.
'The Cathedral of Magdeburg, officially called the Cathedral of Saints Catherine and Maurice (known as Magdeburger Dom in German) was the first Gothic cathedral in Germany and with a height of 104 m, it is the tallest cathedral in the former East Germany. The cathedral is in Magdeburg, the capital city of the Bundesland of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, and is also home to the grave of Otto I the Great...'

John Dee.
'Dee straddled the worlds of science and magic. One of the most learned men of his time, he had lectured to crowded halls at the University of Paris when still in his early twenties. He was an ardent promoter of mathematics, a respected astronomer and a leading expert in navigation, having trained many of those who would conduct England's voyages of discovery. At the same time, he immersed himself deeply in Christian angel-magic and Hermetic philosophy, devoting the last third of his life almost exclusively to these pursuits. For Dee, as with many of his contemporaries, these activities were not contradictory, but particular aspects of a consistent world-view.'

Winston Churchill.
'Churchill spent much of his childhood at boarding schools, including Harrow. He was rarely visited by his mother, whom he virtually worshipped, despite his letters begging her to either come or let his father permit him to come home. He had a distant relationship with his father, despite keenly following his father's career. Once, in 1886, he is reported to have proclaimed "My daddy is Chancellor of the Exchequer and one day that's what I'm going to be." His desolate, lonely childhood stayed with him throughout his life. He was very close to his nurse, Elizabeth Ann Everest (nicknamed "Woom" by Churchill), and was deeply saddened when she died on 3 July 1895. Churchill paid for her gravestone at the City of London Cemetery and Crematorium...'

History of Greenland.
'The history of Greenland, the world's largest island, is the history of life under extreme Arctic conditions: an ice-cap covers about 84 percent of the island, largely restricting human activity to the coasts. Greenland was unknown to Europeans until the 10th century, when it was discovered by Icelandic Vikings. Before this discovery, it had been inhabited for a long time by Arctic peoples, although it was unpopulated when the Vikings arrived; the direct ancestors of the modern Inuit did not arrive until around 1200. The Inuit were the only people to inhabit the island for several hundred years, but in remembrance of the Viking settlement, Denmark nonetheless claimed the territory, and colonized it in the 18th century. Colonial privileges were retained, such as trade monopoly...'

Rudolph Valentino. Silent movie star.

Claire Windsor. Silent movie star.

Norma Talmadge. Silent movie star.
More. 'Norma Talmadge was one of the greatest stars of the silent era. She began her film work as a teenager in 1910 at the Vitagraph Studios in Flatbush, just a streetcar ride from her home. In 1916 she met and married exhibitor Joseph M. Schenck, and together they formed the Norma Talmadge Film Corporation, one of the most lucrative partnerships in film history. Talmadge became one of the top box office attractions for the rest of the silent era, evolving from a spunky teenager into one of the finest dramatic actresses of the screen. One of the wealthiest women in Hollywood, she retired after her two talkies proved disappointing at the box office. She died on Christmas Eve, 1957.'

Pella Museum. The geology and paleontology of Jordan.

SeniorNet. Bringing wisdom to the information age.
'SeniorNet's mission is to provide older adults education for and access to computer technologies to enhance their lives and enable them to share their knowledge and wisdom.'

Independent Media Institute.

Suzaku Comics. Online manga.
link

15th November


Postwar Life: Wayland, Massachusetts 1946-60. Vignettes of Massachusetts life.

Centre for Political Song. 'Welcome to the Centre for Political Song. We exist to promote and foster an awareness of all forms of political song; an appreciation of the role of political song in the social, political and cultural life of communities; and to facilitate research in all relevant areas of study. '
Political songs.

Shunga Netsuke. Japanese netsuke figurines. May not be safe for work.

The Adventures of Herr Baby, by Mrs Molesworth, 1908. A delightful tale.

The Loyalty Oath Controversy, University of California 1949-51.
'In 1949, during the Cold War, the Board of Regents of the University of California imposed a requirement that all University employees sign an oath affirming not only loyalty to the state constitution, but a denial of membership or belief in organizations (including Communist organizations) advocating overthrow of the United States government. Many faculty, students, and employees resisted the oath for violating principles of shared governance, academic freedom, and tenure. In the summer of 1950, thirty-one "non-signer" professors--including internationally distinguished scholars, not one of whom had been charged of professional unfitness or personal disloyalty--and many other UC employees were dismissed. The controversy raised critical questions for American higher education.'

Bettie Page. May not be safe for work.
'Nice and naughty, shy and daring, simple and exotic, Bettie shone with a freshness never before seen in the modeling scene. Without elaborate props, costumes, or set-dressings, Bettie produced some of the most beautiful shots to ever grace the covers of hundreds of magazines.'

The H. L. Mencken Page.
'The most prominent newspaperman, book reviewer, and political commentator of his day, Henry Louis Mencken was a libertarian before the word came into usage. His prose is as clear as an azure sky, and his rhetoric as deadly as a rifle shot. Frequent targets of his lance were Franklin Roosevelt and New Deal politics, Comstocks, hygenists, "uplifters", social reformers of any stripe, boobs & quacks, and the insatiable American appetite for nonsense and gaudy sham. But his life was not defined by negativity. He was positively enthusiastic about to the writings of Twain and Conrad, the music of Brahms, Beethoven and Bach, and the victuals offered up by Chesapeake Bay. '

Lucille Ball, Everything Lucy.
'Lucille Ball was offered her own televison program by CBS in 1949, at the dawn of television. Modeled after her hit Radio Program, My Favorite Husband, Lucille Ball was excited by the new medium. She told CBS that she would only do it if her husband, Cuban bandleader Desi Arnaz, could be her co-star. CBS had more of an all-American couple in mind, and they flatly turned her down. Not one to take no for an answer, Lucy raised $5000 and, together with Desi, produced a pilot. That historic show did not air ... but it contained all of the elements that would make I Love Lucy an instant hit, and it convinced CBS to sign the deal...'

Sisto Badalocchio. 'Italian painter (b. 1585, Parma, d. ca. 1619, Parma)'.

Tsuru Gallery. Japanese prints.

Flapper Culture.
'The flapper, whose antics were immortalized in the cartoons of John Held Jr., was the heroine of the Jazz Age. With short hair and a short skirt, with turned-down hose and powdered knees - the flapper must have seemed to her mother (the gentle Gibson girl of an earlier generation) like a rebel. No longer confined to home and tradition, the typical flapper was a young women who was often thought of as a little fast and maybe even a little brazen...'

Alicebot. Artificial intelligence and chat 'robots'.

Airchive. 'The webseum of commercial aviation'.

75 Years of Green Line Coaches 1930-2005. From the London Transport Museum.
'To celebrate Green Line's 75th anniversary, we present a selection of 30 poster images from the Museum's archives. '

Exploits of Lord Krishna.
'While Lord Krishna is widely worshipped among Hindus as an avatar of Lord Vishnu, the cause for his popularity is his intensely human form as described in the Hindu epics. His exploits (collectively called "Krishna Leela") are a popular theme for Indian artists over centuries. Krishna is often depicted as an overgrown, naughty child stealing butter, as a cowherd protecting cows, as a mischievous adolescent who stole women's clothes, and a slayer of demons. He is also the supreme diplomat, and especially the preacher of the sacred verse, Bhagavad-Gita at a time of war.'

The Kingdom of Hawaii.
'The Kingdom of Hawaii was established in 1810 upon the unification of the smaller independent chiefdoms of Oahu, Maui, Molokai, Lanai and the Big Island of Hawaii through swift and bloody battles, led by a warrior chief who later would be immortalized as Kamehameha the Great. Kamehameha failed to secure a victory in Kauai, his effort hampered by a storm. Eventually, Kauai's chief swore allegiance to Kamehameha's rule. The unification ended the feudal society of the Hawaiian islands transforming it into a "modern", independent constitutional monarchy crafted in the tradition of European empires...'

Twilit Grotto: Archives of Western Esoterica. Occult stuff.

Spaceflight Now. Space flight news.
link

14th November


Big Things: The Monuments of Canada.
'This website is dedicated to those fantastic and awe inspiring monuments built by communities to draw tourist dollars into their community. I am talking about the world's largest oilcan, the world's largest Easter egg, the world's largest (fill in the blank)...'

Angkor Guide.
'Angkor Wat? Here's a translation of Maurice Glaize's popular and definitive 1944 guide to the Angkor Monuments for free. Read it online or download the text with a useful map. '

Martin Chambi. Master photographer of indigenous Peru.
'As the world has awakened to the enormous riches of historical and contemporary Latin American art, renewed interest has been sparked in the extraordinary work of Peruvian photographer Chambi (1891-1973). Of Indian descent, Chambi was born in a small village in the Andes. After moving to Arequipa and apprenticing for nine years in the studio of Max T. Vargas, Chambi traveled to Cuzco and opened his own studio. Between the early 1920s and the 1950s, Chambi documented Cuzco's substantial cultural heritage. As a photographer, he "laid bare all the social complexity of the Andes," says Vargas Llosa in his foreword, with images that "place us in the heart of highland feudalism, in the haciendas of the large landholders, with their servants and concubines" and "in the colonial processions of contrite and drunken throngs." ...'

Black Europeans.
'The figures featured in Black Europeans - Alexander Pushkin, Alexandre Dumas, George Polgreen Bridgetower, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and John Archer - all have a mixed European and African ancestry. Although they were fully conscious of their mixed backgrounds, they also regarded themselves as part of a European nation, and thought of their work as a contribution to their own sector of the culture of Europe and the world. And they were all figures whose public image and whose activities have been generally accepted (both by their contemporaries and by later generations) to be an important part of Europe's cultural heritage - to the point where most people ignore, or have forgotten about, the 'black' element of their identity and its significance in their lives and work.'

The Chymistry of Isaac Newton.
'Isaac Newton, like Albert Einstein, is a quintessential symbol of the human intellect and its ability to decode the secrets of nature. Newton's fundamental contributions to science include the quantification of gravitational attraction, the discovery that white light is actually a mixture of immutable spectral colors, and the formulation of the calculus. Yet there is another, more mysterious side to Newton that is imperfectly known, a realm of activity that spanned some thirty years of his life, although he kept it largely hidden from his contemporaries and colleagues. We refer to Newton's involvement in the discipline of alchemy, or as it was often called in seventeenth-century England, "chymistry." '
'Newton wrote and transcribed about a million words on the subject of alchemy, of which only a tiny fraction has today been published. Newton's alchemical manuscripts include a rich and diverse set of document types, including laboratory notebooks, indices of alchemical substances and operations, Newton's transcriptions from other sources, and even poetry.'

The Wonder World of K. Gordon Murray.
'K. Gordon Murray was a Florida-based producer and distributor of low-budget motion pictures. From the late 1950's through the mid 1970's, Murray released at least 66 films, which can be broken down into three categories: 1/ Murray imported, redubbed and released some 30 horror films from Mexico. 2/ Murray released over 20 fairy tale films to a "Weekends Only" matinee audience, virtually creating the highly lucrative "Kiddie Matinee" marketing niche. These films were either redubbed imports, rereleases of older films, or original productions. 3/ Murray released about a dozen exploitation films, risque adult dramas designed both for drive-ins and adults-only grindhouses. These included imported foreign films and original productions. '
'This fansite is a tribute to one of the most unique and enigmatic independent filmmakers of an era long gone, a database for fans, and a forum for folks who want to share their Murray memories, and perhaps offer information on some of the "lost" films. We welcome feedback, guest reviews, suggestions, etc. Click on any of the links below to enter the Wonder World of K.Gordon Murray! '

Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia at Ferris State University.
'I am a garbage collector, racist garbage. For three decades I have collected items that defame and belittle Africans and their American descendants. I have a parlor game, "72 Pictured Party Stunts," from the 1930s. One of the game's cards instructs players to, "Go through the motions of a colored boy eating watermelon." The card shows a dark black boy, with bulging eyes and blood red lips, eating a watermelon as large as he is. The card offends me, but I collected it and 4,000 similar items that portray blacks as Coons, Toms, Sambos, Mammies, Picaninnies, and other dehumanizing racial caricatures. I collect this garbage because I believe, and know to be true, that items of intolerance can be used to teach tolerance.'

The Hyena People of Nigeria. Photography.

Dynamic Thought, 1923. Esoterica.
'Do not worry because you cannot follow the course exactly to the letter. Do what you can of it, adapt it to your life, and do the best you can in present circumstances.'
'The principal thing is to get twice daily into what is called the Silence, to quieten the senses, and get in touch with the Unseen, i.e., God, Divine Mind, the Infinite, Principle of Good, First Cause, the Absolute, the name does not matter, they all mean the same.'
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13th November


Voices from the Dust Bowl.
'Voices from the Dust Bowl: The Charles L. Todd and Robert Sonkin Migrant Worker Collection is an online presentation of a multi-format ethnographic field collection documenting the everyday life of residents of Farm Security Administration (FSA) migrant work camps in central California in 1940 and 1941. This collection consists of audio recordings, photographs, manuscript materials, publications, and ephemera generated during two separate documentation trips supported by the Archive of American Folk Song (now the Archive of Folk Culture, American Folklife Center). '
'Todd and Sonkin, both of the City College of New York (currently the City College of the City University of New York), took disc recording equipment supplied by the Archive of American Folk Song to Arvin, Bakersfield, El Rio, Firebaugh, Porterville, Shafter, Thornton, Visalia, Westley, and Yuba City, California. In these locales, they documented dance tunes, cowboy songs, traditional ballads, square dance and play party calls, camp council meetings, camp court proceedings, conversations, storytelling sessions, and personal experience narratives of the Dust Bowl refugees who inhabited the camps. '

Innovations in Chinese Painting 1850-1950.

Prague, The Crown of Bohemia, 1347-1437.
'Crowned king of Bohemia in 1347, Charles IV sought to make his capital city-Prague-the cultural rival of Paris and Rome. The remarkable flowering of art that resulted is being celebrated in an exhibition that draws together some 200 stunning examples including panel paintings, goldsmiths' work, illuminated manuscripts, sculpture, silk embroideries, and stained glass. These little-known masterpieces attest to the wide-ranging achievements of the hundreds of artists affiliated with Prague and the Bohemian crown during the reign of Charles IV and his two sons, Wenceslas IV and Sigismund. The exhibition draws on numerous collections in the Czech Republic as well as other European and American collections.'
Images.

Civil War @ Smithsonian 'is produced by the National Portrait Gallery and is dedicated to examining the Civil War through the Smithsonian Institution's extensive and manifold collections. Since the war itself, 1861–1865, the institution has been actively collecting, preserving, and remembering America's most profound national experience. Now through the World Wide Web, this site will significantly expand that mission, giving the public increased access to Smithsonian collections and archives. '

Transatlantic Dialogue: Contemporary Art In and Out of Africa.
'Over the centuries, a dialogue evolved across the Atlantic as Africans came to the New World and blacks from America returned to their continent of origin. An aesthetic conversation has recently developed between African and African American artists as they work from different perspectives to reconcile their African identity and heritage within the currents of contemporary art. This exhibition explores the varied ways that African and African American artists interpret their ideas and identities. Similarities of style as well as diversity of expression emerge from a shared African heritage.'
'Color, pattern and rhythm, improvisation and spiritual awareness are some of the elements found in the work of these artists. Many explore the performatory aspects of culture through music or ritual suggestions. Some artists respond to environmental and historical circumstances in their work. Most acknowledge a sense of spirituality that echoes older African sensibilities. Perhaps it is telling that the works in this exhibition cannot easily be identified as either African or African American; they are all part of the same aesthetic conversation.'

Chicago: City of the Century.
'City of the Century chronicles Chicago's dramatic transformation from a swampy frontier town of fur traders and Native Americans to a massive metropolis that was the quintessential American city of the nineteenth century. The film tells how innovation, ingenuity, determination and ruthlessness created empires in what was a marshy wasteland and describes the hardships endured by millions of working men and women whose labor helped a capitalist class reinvent the way America did business. Along the way, this program revels in Chicago's triumphs -- among them the architectural experimentation that gave the city one of the world's most distinctive skylines -- and delves into the heart of Chicago's painful struggles. Bringing to life the Windy City's rich mixture of cultures, its writers and journalists, its political corruption and labor upheavals, this film bears witness to the creation of one of the most dynamic and vibrant cities in the world.'

Eastern Orthodox Icons. Huge gallery of images of Eastern Orthodox icons.

Communist Propaganda Posters. 'Collection of 1400+ POSTERS from Russia, Czech republic, Poland and Cuba.'
'Most posters in our collection are originals (exceptions are clearly marked), political posters, made in the period 1950 - 1990, published with the supervision of the Communist Party, and were designed to make people work harder, be better communists and good patriots.'

Jainism Potpourri.
'Along with Buddhism, Jainism is the most important reform movement to separate from the main body of Hinduism and establish an independent unit. The word is derived from Jina ("Victor," or "Conqueror") implying final victory over bondage to life's misery. Jainism has the universal message of nonviolence. The absence of a creator god in Jainism can be understood as a reaction against the nature worship of early Vedic religion, the priestly order of Brahmanism, and the theology of the Upanishads. Jain arts and architecture has enriched the artistic heritage of India.'
'Jainism was founded by Rishabha, and attained a major status in India at the time of Mahavira , who was born in about 599 B.C. in Northern India, in the town of Vyshali, in the present day Bihar, in a royal family. When he was about 30 years old, after he had been a householder, Mahavira decided to abandon his aristocratic surroundings in favor of an ascetic life. He cast aside his fine raiment, gave away his treasures, and embarked upon a severe regimen. For twelve years he underwent castigation, enduring bodily and spiritual injury, and emerged a teacher of many monks, a renowned preacher, and a profounder of a new religion.'

The Works of Tacitus.
'This is the complete set of Church and Brodribb translations of Tacitus; this etext includes parallel English and Latin text. Gaius Cornelius Tacitus (56?-117 CE), writer, orator, lawyer, and senator, was one of the greatest historians of antiquity. His Annals and Histories are a panorama of first century Rome, from Tiberius to Domitian. His prose style is in the first tier of Latin writers. Tacitus presents a vivid picture of the high-water point of the Roman empire, and does not gloss over the toxic corruption and brutality of the time. '

Churchill and the Great Republic: An Interactive Exhibition.
'On April 17, 1945, British Prime Minister Winston S. Churchill addressed the House of Commons on the occasion of President Franklin Roosevelt's death. He said of his friend and ally: "In war he had raised the strength, might and glory of the great Republic to a height never attained by any nation in history." '
'This exhibition examines the life and career of Winston Spencer Churchill and emphasizes his lifelong links with the United States--the nation he called "the great Republic." The exhibition comes nearly forty years after the death of Winston Churchill and sixty years after the D-Day allied invasion of Nazi-occupied France during World War II. It commemorates both of these events.'

Climate of Kansas, 1948, 'complete text and illustrations. Contains searchable records covering 1887-1946, with some pre-1887 information. Data made available by the Kansas Board of Agriculture.'
Historical photos of weather damage. Twisters and the Dust Bowl.

Food & Agricultures of the World.
'Agropolis-Museum is a Science Center dealing with topics such as food, nutrition, agriculture, with an historical approach on a worldwide scale. '
The Banquet de l'Humanite. 'Although some people would say that «we are all in the same boat», the «Banquet de l'Humanité» is here to show that each one eats according to one's income, food resources and cultural background. Inequities are real and it is necessary and urgent to pursue the struggle to provide each inhabitant of this planet with proper food and decent living conditions.'

Bateman 365. 'An animated film a day for a year. How hard can that be? '

Jared Joslin Painting & Jessica Joslin Sculpture.
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12th November


An American Ballroom Companion: Dance Instruction Manuals ca. 1490-1920.
'An American Ballroom Companion presents a collection of over two hundred social dance manuals at the Library of Congress. The list begins with a rare late fifteenth-century source, Les basses danses de Marguerite d'Autriche (c.1490) and ends with Ella Gardner's 1929 Public dance halls, their regulation and place in the recreation of adolescents. Along with dance instruction manuals, this online presentation also includes a significant number of antidance manuals, histories, treatises on etiquette, and items from other conceptual categories. Many of the manuals also provide historical information on theatrical dance. All illuminate the manner in which people have joyfully expressed themselves as they dance for and with one another. '

The Creed of Buddha, 1908.

History of 'The Protocols of the Elders of Zion'. History of a conspiracy theory and a blood libel.
'The Protocols of the (Learned) Elders of Zion is a fraudelent document, frequently quoted and reprinted by anti-Semites, purporting to describe a plan to achieve Jewish global domination. It has been proven fraudulent by numerous independent investigations during the last 100 years. The Encyclopaedia Britannica describes the Protocols as a "fraudulent document that served as a pretext and rationale for anti-Semitism in the early 20th century".'

Dogpatch USA.
'Dogpatch USA is a defunct theme park located on State Highway 7 between the cities of Harrison and Jasper in Arkansas, USA, an area known today as Marble Falls. The park opened to the public in 1968. It was based on the popular comic strip Li'l Abner, created by cartoonist Al Capp and set in a fictional town called "Dogpatch." ...'

Race to the Moon.
'On Christmas Eve 1968, one of the largest audiences in television history tuned in to an extraordinary sight: a live telecast of the moon's surface as seen from Apollo 8, the first manned space flight to leave Earth's gravitational pull and orbit the moon. The historic journey captivated people around the world; many welcomed a technological triumph in space after a year marked by assassinations, riots and war. '
'As this American Experience production reveals, however, the mission's success was far from assured. The Apollo 8 astronauts had just four months to prepare for the risky lunar orbit, and catastrophic failure would have brought a halt to America's goal of putting a man on the moon before the end of the decade... '

Global Gazzetteer. Directory of the world's towns and cities.

The Surgery of Ancient Rome. A display of surgical instruments from antiquity.

Mark Twain In His Times.
'This interpretive archive, drawn largely from the resources of the Barrett Collection, focuses on how "Mark Twain" and his works were created and defined, marketed and performed, reviewed and appreciated. The goal is to allow readers, scholars, students and teachers to see what Mark Twain and His Times said about each other, in a way that can speak to us today. Contained here are dozens of texts and manuscripts, scores of contemporary reviews and articles, hundreds of images, and many different kinds of interactive exhibits. '

Contemporary African Database. African movers and shakers.
'The Contemporary Africa Database is a continuously growing, participatory online project, designed to provide easily accessible and current information concerning prominent Africans, African organisations, and dates in the African calendar. '

The Hayao Miyazaki Web. Japanese anime and manga.

Paradise Lost.
'Paradise Lost (1667) is an epic poem by the 17th century English poet John Milton. It was originally published in 1667 in ten books and written in blank verse. A second edition followed in 1674, redivided into twelve books (mimicking the way classical epics were divided) with minor revisions throughout and a note on the versification. The poem concerns the Christian story of the Fall of Man: the temptation of Adam and Eve by Satan and their expulsion from the Garden of Eden.'

A King Pays Homage to Rama. Indian art.
'This miniature originates from the Punjab Hills region, which, until the nineteenth century, was divided into thirty-five feudal states, each ruled by a Rajput and each supporting its own separate painting school...'

The Oxford Book of American Essays, 1914.
'From Franklin and Emerson to Whitman and Roosevelt, Brander Matthews expertly selected 32 essays on topics literary, political and humorous spanning over a century of this form's development in America.'

An American Anthology, 1787-1900.
'These 1740 selections by 573 authors comprise an unparalleled verse anthology in its concentration on representing a century of poetic culture rather than selecting the laureates only. Next to those of Dickinson, Poe, and Longfellow, the verse populi of Mother Goose, Negro Spirituals and even "A Visit from St. Nicholas" are given their place.'

Divine Vehicles from Hindu Mythology. 'Most Hindu Gods have their own vehicles that they use to go about their tasks and responsibilities. We bring you this fascinating exhibition of pictures from Indian mythologies. '

History of Holland.

Greater Toronto Area Digital Mapping Project.
'The Toronto region is rich in history and tradition, and one area that it is particularly affluent in is its cartography. The cartographic history of Toronto began during the settlement by the French at Fort Rouillé, but it was not until British settlement in the late 18th Century that a sustained effort was made to map the area. From the first maps of Fort York and the harbour, to today's modern aerial photos and cartography depicting its present day grandeur as Canada's largest urban centre, the mapping of Toronto has continued non-stop. Through all its developments and expansion, the Greater Toronto Area has been sketched and mapped to the point where it currently boasts a tremendously rich assortment of cartographic treasures accessible in various repositories throughout the city...'

cetera. 'Ninety-eight percent of the net is crud. Ginohn is striving to make it ninety-nine. ' Good stuff.
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