Comic

Maria Montessori: When Genius Devours Itself

Maria Montessori: When Genius Devours Itself

There are some people who lack the splendid good sense of dying at the right time. Geniuses who flared with an early fire and then ground out their latter days in petty feuds and stifling orthodoxy. That line of demarcation between early brilliance and later brutality is always fascinating – what happens to genius when it turns against its own best interests – and there are few examples of it so m... »

Hedy LaMarr: The Movie Star Who Invented Bluetooth… in 1942.

Hedy LaMarr: The Movie Star Who Invented Bluetooth… in 1942.

A movie star. An avant-garde composer. A radio-controlled torpedo. Wi-Fi. One of the unfortunate truths about our web of modern comforts is that the great majority of them stem, via twisting strands of causality, from warfare. World War II in particular forced the West into an orgy of technological creativity whose fruits we are still blithely and blissfully nomming on. One of the strangest storie... »

Parity Girl: The Experimental Physics of Chien-Shiung Wu

Parity Girl: The Experimental Physics of Chien-Shiung Wu

How does a neutrino sign its name? Sometimes it’s only the truly absurd questions that can break physics from its well-worn grooves and force it to elaborate fantastic new schemes to explain reality.  The notion that, for some processes, there is a distinct right or left handed bias in nature, is one that was routinely scoffed at right until the moment it was proven true by a series of supremely e... »

Jesus’s Twin Sister, Brains Over Bust, And Serial Killer Lovers: An Indie Comic Round Up!

Jesus’s Twin Sister, Brains Over Bust, And Serial Killer Lovers: An Indie Comic Round Up!

Seattle’s Emerald City Comic Con (ECCC) might be the last major comic book convention that is still actually and primarily about comic books, and as such it tends to draw a dizzying array of both major and underground talent.  Geoff Schaeffer and I have had a booth there the last four years for Frederick the Great, but this year was special for the variety and creativity of the independent comic a... »

Understanding the Lost Children: The Life and Science of Anna Freud

Understanding the Lost Children: The Life and Science of Anna Freud

Humans have a profound genius for generating terrible ideas.  Slavery.  Theocratic government.  But there is one particular idea we hung onto for an unfathomably long amount of time before finally questioning, and that is the notion that Children Are Property, and therefore may be treated more or less however we please.  Our appreciation for the importance of their early environment, and the respo... »

Ms. Marvel #2: Heina Dadabhoy and I Talk Islam in Comics, and the Demise of the Spinebreaker.

Ms. Marvel #2: Heina Dadabhoy and I Talk Islam in Comics, and the Demise of the Spinebreaker.

Yesterday, Marvel released the second issue of Ms. Marvel, a series featuring the trials and tribulations of Kamala Khan, a Muslim of Pakistani background who finds herself suddenly a superhero.  Skepchick’s own Heina Dadabhoy and I had a quite wonderful conversation about it, religion in comics, and the cross-roads of ethnicity, identity, and sexuality, which you can read below if you’... »

Carolynn L Smith and the Astounding Richness of Animal  Communication

Carolynn L Smith and the Astounding Richness of Animal Communication

You’re a rooster who’s down on his luck.  Your comb is a bit shabby, your fighting skills aren’t up to snuff, and we’re not even going to mention the state of your wattle.  Chances are, you’re a beta male in your little social unit, and most likely, every time you start trying to attract a hen by pointing out a bit of delectable food, the alpha male comes over, pushes you out of the way, steals yo... »

Clean Water, Breathable Air, and the Science of Food: The Legacy of Ellen Swallow

Clean Water, Breathable Air, and the Science of Food: The Legacy of Ellen Swallow

Every morning we wake up to a feast of assumptions.  We assume that the place our sewage gets dumped is not the same place our drinking water comes from.  We instinctually expect a complete list of ingredients to be found on the side of all of our food purchases, and know as a matter of course the relative merits of carbs, proteins, and sugars.  We know that our children, be they sons or daughters... »

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