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Showing posts from September, 2006

Barclay ETFF transcript now available

My transcript of Barry Seidman's Equal Time for Freethought interview with Harold Barclay, author of People Without Government: An Anthropology of Anarchy , is now online .

Blogroll: ReFrederator

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Back in the days of VHS, one of the common items were cheap compilations of cartoons that had fallen into the public domain, and which could therefore be distributed by third party companies. (I still have a Daffy Duck videotape from 1989). Nowadays, thanks to the wonders of the Internet, it's possible to see the same cartoons online for free. Archive.org is the dean of public domain video sites, but ReFrederator is a new site that, incredibly enough, posts a new cartoon each weekday! The cartoons include everything from old-fashioned Popeye action and Warner Bros. mischief (with looney standbys like A Corny Concerto , Pigs in a Polka , and Wackiki Wabbit ) to the exploits of far more obscure characters like Flip the Frog, Molly Moo-Cow, and Willie Whopper (Ub Iwerks's studio is the most consistently entertaining of the lesser-known studios sampled). Stylistic experimentation abounds in cartoons like The Dover Boys, Chuck Jones's pioneering 1942 foray into styl

ETFF makes love, not war

If you talk about the scientists who have said, "Well, we're very aggressive and we can't escape it because that's our nature", they have almost always been only looking at the male side of the human equation. — Judith Hand In late July and throughout the month of August, Equal Time for Freethought ran an extensive and detailed four-part analysis of the origins of violence and the prospects for peace, as informed by the issues of gender, human nature, and hierarchy. On July 30, August 6 and August 13, an epic three-part, 90-minute show aired with host Barry Seidman interviewing Judith Hand and Douglas Fry , respective authors of the intriguing books Women, Power, and the Biology of Peace and The Human Potential for Peace: An Anthropological Challenge to Assumptions about War and Violence . Both of these authors brought to light much interesting information about the interconnection between patriarchy and violence, and pointed to, well "the human poten

New Fu frames

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Since its debut in the early days of the Web in 1997, Lawrence Knapp's Page of Fu Manchu has been the definitive Internet resource about Sax Rohmer's classic villain, charting Fu's influence, incarnations, and imitators. The site has just posted some screen captures I made of Fu Manchu's "cameo" in the Warner Bros. cartoon Have You Got Any Castles (1938) (thanks to ReFrederator for posting a nice print of the public domain cartoon online), as well as expanding its description of the appearance. Way back in 2001, I also contributed to the site's list of "clones" of Fu Manchu, the Fu-in-all-but-name in question being Iskandar from Jack Williamson's science fiction fantasy The Wizard of Life (1934).

Oscar Wilde on pain, pleasure and Christianity

A passage which deserves to be better known, from Oscar Wilde's famous essay The Soul of Man Under Socialism : Shallow speakers and shallow thinkers in pulpits and on platforms often talk about the world's worship of pleasure, and whine against it. But it is rarely in the world's history that its ideal has been one of joy and beauty. The worship of pain has far more often dominated the world. Mediaevalism, with its saints and martyrs, its love of self-torture, its wild passion for wounding itself, its gashing with knives, and its whipping with rods – Mediaevalism is real Christianity, and the mediaeval Christ is the real Christ. When the Renaissance dawned upon the world, and brought with it the new ideals of the beauty of life and the joy of living, men could not understand Christ. Even Art shows us that. The painters of the Renaissance drew Christ as a little boy playing with another boy in a palace or a garden, or lying back in His mother's arms, smiling at her,