Comic

Sofia Kovalevskaya: Love Makes All the Partial Difference

Sofia Kovalevskaya: Love Makes All the Partial Difference

Everybody needs love, but for some the striving after it so dominates their every action and decision that it becomes impossible to ever truly find. Veering between professions, friendships, and lovers, their desire for perfect love driving away by its intensity anybody who might have offered it, those possessed by such a need rarely live happily or end well, but their lives dazzle as against the ... »

Thor is a Lady! Let’s Complain About It!

Thor is a Lady! Let’s Complain About It!

Marvel has announced that Thor is now going to be a lady. No no, hold on. Not that Thor. That’s still Chris Hemsworth. Let’s not get crazy. They’re just making the Thor of the comic books. You remember, right? Those colorful little picture filled things made of mashed trees? They’re changing that one into a lady person. While the cynic in me expects that this is just a mark... »

Mary Somerville: Savior of British Mathematics.

Mary Somerville: Savior of British Mathematics.

In the 1750s, when France was foundering scientifically in the Cartesian shallows, it took Emilie du Châtelet’s French translation of Newton’s Principia to reinvigorate Continental physical science. Then it was England’s turn to toss itself headlong into the longest stretch of scientific stagnation it has ever known. From the age of Newton, Harvey, Halley, Boyle, Hooke, and Wren, there stretched a... »

Zita the Spacegirl, Amelia Cole, And the Exciting Growth Of Girl Adventure Comics

Zita the Spacegirl, Amelia Cole, And the Exciting Growth Of Girl Adventure Comics

Last month saw the much anticipated release of sequel volumes to two of indie comics’ most imaginative titles: Amelia Cole and the Hidden War and The Return of Zita the Spacegirl. The success of these independent comics, along with more mainstream titles like Marvel’s Ms. Marvel, Black Widow, and Captain Marvel, DC’s Harley Quinn, and Image’s Rat Queens, is rapidly disproving everything we thought... »

A Web, Not a Road: The Anthropology of Margaret Mead

A Web, Not a Road: The Anthropology of Margaret Mead

There is hardly a name in science more encrusted with bad faith generalizations and well-meaning but ahistorical hagiography than that of anthropologist Margaret Mead. In her time, she was to anthropology what Carl Sagan was to astronomy – a brilliant and irreverent popularizer who inspired a new generation of scientists even as she earned the undying enmity of the passing one. Praised as the most... »

Neuroembryology in Wartime: Rita Levi-Montalcini and the Discovery Of Nerve Growth Factor

Neuroembryology in Wartime: Rita Levi-Montalcini and the Discovery Of Nerve Growth Factor

It is 1942, and Allied bombs are raking the city of Turin, wreaking a thudding vengeance for Il Duce’s cynical alliance with Nazi Germany. Amidst the panic and carnage, a woman carefully gathers her most precious items, a microscope and a set of pain-stakingly prepared slides, before heading into her basement to wait out the attack. A Jew, ejected from her university position in 1938 because of ra... »

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... »

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