The Primate Diaries

Archives for July, 2009

Creating Art on Drugs

Artist Ricardo Cortes has a beautiful exhibition of his work in the current edition of Vanity Fair entitled Sketches of the Drug Czars. In his series he points out the steps that have led our country through the most expensive (and least effective) domestic policy in history.

Charles Darwin’s Reception in Germany

In a review in PLoS Biology Axel Meyer discusses a new book by Sander Gliboff on the history of evolutionary biology in Germany following the publication of On the Origin of Species. While many are familiar with evolutionary biologist Ernst Haeckel, few may know about the scientist who is primarily responsible for the wide acceptance…

US Military Spied on Domestic Peace Groups

From Democracy Now: Newly declassified documents reveal that an active member of Students for a Democratic Society and Port Militarization Resistance in Washington state was actually an informant for the US military. The man everyone knew as “John Jacob” was in fact John Towery, a member of the Force Protection Service at Fort Lewis. The…

The Nature of Partisan Politics

Conservatives and liberals conflict over their basic views on human nature. As an evolutionary anthropologist and student of history, I’m always fascinated to learn what politically motivated figures have to say about human nature. It’s one area of life where people require zero expertise but can still claim authority in. A case in point appears…

Humanist Symposium is Up

The 40th edition of the Humanist Symposium blog carnival is up at The Evolving Mind. My picks in this edition include:

The Domino Theory Returns, in Afghanistan

In the 1960s military strategists promoted the “domino theory” as a rationale for why the United States needed to intervene in what later turned out to be a Vietnamese civil war. The logic was that, as communist influence extended from Russian and China, every country that fell before the “Reds” would perpetuate yet another country…

Facebook Espionage?

Facebook is a wonderful resource, but there’s good reason to be cautious about how much information we put out there about ourselves (and not just to avoid stalkers and advertisers): You can friend me at facebook.com/eric.michael.johnson

On July 25, 1920 the English biophysicist Rosalind Franklin was born. She was instrumental in discovering the molecular structure of DNA, though her vital contributions were only posthumously acknowledged. After receiving her PhD from Cambridge in 1945 she worked as a research associate for John Randall at King’s College in London. Beginning in early 1951…

Stanley Fish, distinguished law professor and close friend of Henry Louis Gates, Jr., puts the arrest of Gates and President Obama’s comments into perspective in his latest piece for The New York Times:

Jeff Hebert is an amazing artist. He created the banner for this page as well as that for Living the Scientific Life and Dispatches From the Culture Wars. His primary work is for HeroMachine and his work can be viewed at his online portfolio. Juan Cole at Informed Comment is, along with Robert Fisk‘s reporting,…