Philosophy

Nature, Nuture, and Social Justice

Nature, Nuture, and Social Justice

Over the past week, several articles have come to my attention for various reasons that stress the “nature” part of “nature vs. nurture”. And as I read them, I noticed that the reaction they provoked wasn’t a scientific one necessarily, but a philosophical one. Maybe even a moral one. And here’s the thing: I think that “solving” the “nature vs. nurture” debate is actually a sideline from the moral... »

Album of the (last) Week – Open Mike Eagle’s “Dark Comedy”

Album of the (last) Week – Open Mike Eagle’s “Dark Comedy”

Hello there, Lab Rats. Apologies for the late post, but I’m back to let you in on one of Hip-Hops best kept secrets: Open Mike Eagle. As a member of the Hellfyre Club collective (who has an impressive roster including personal favorites Busdriver and Milo), Mike has found his own track making heady rap over some of the more interesting, less cookie-cutter beats unlike those that permeate muc... »

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... »

What Time Is It?

What Time Is It?

I’m fairly confident I can say that we’ve all had a moment in our lives when a cartoon swooped in and saved us. It seems unlikely to me that I’m alone in having an imaginary light bulb sprout above head as I watched some after school twenty-two minute adventure. The feeling is akin to that warmth one gets in a cherished piece of art. You know the one. It makes you want to overcom... »

Stem Cells, Stressed Cells, Healing, and the Lure of Rejuvenation

Stem Cells, Stressed Cells, Healing, and the Lure of Rejuvenation

A recent study in Nature, entitled “Stimulus-triggered fate conversion of somatic cells into pluripotency“, suggests that subjecting cells to dangerous but non-lethal conditions (such as a bath in acid, or a mechanical squeeze) can turn them into stem cells. Unsurprisingly, this publication set off a bit of a media blitz, and then it turned out that there were numerous problems with th... »

How I Lost My Religion Without the Help of Michael Stipe

How I Lost My Religion Without the Help of Michael Stipe

Losing my faith was not only deeply personal but also a complicated untangling of odds and ends beliefs that I’d managed to acquire during my formative years on the buckle of the Bible belt. So, I figured what better way to introduce myself than to consolidate all of those years of slowly peeling off the god bandaid that resulted in oh so much emotional and intellectual turmoil into a list o... »

Guest Post: Islamic Art and the Smithsonian Celestial Globe

Guest Post: Islamic Art and the Smithsonian Celestial Globe

This is a guest post from Skepchick Network contributor Benny! Benny is best know for his writing on Queereka and we were thrilled when he asked us to post this article on islamic art and it’s link to astronomy. Enjoy! From Benny: Since I am attending a Catholic college we are required to take two religion classes as part of our general degree requirements. Luckily the types of classes that ... »

Sex, Cards, and Calculus: The Life of Émilie du Châtelet

Sex, Cards, and Calculus: The Life of Émilie du Châtelet

In popular mythology, the 1687 publication of Newton’s Principia was the culminating moment when one human told the world how the universe works, performed his century’s equivalent of the mic drop, and then received the adulation that was his due.  Of course, it worked nothing like that, and while England was quick to lionize his intellectual achievement, it took half a century for his ideas to ca... »

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