OUPblog

Mon, 22 Jul 2019 12:30:58 +0000
How medical marijuana hurts Mexican drug cartels

Public support for marijuana legalization has grown substantially. The consumption of recreational marijuana has been legalized in Uruguay, Canada, and several US states. In addition, many European countries, most US states, and Thailand have passed laws that allow the consumption of cannabis for medical reasons. Given the growth in public support, it is important to […]

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Mon, 22 Jul 2019 09:30:10 +0000
The surviving letters of Jane Austen

Famed English novelist Jane Austenhad an extensive, intimate correspondence with her older sister Cassandra throughout her life, writing thousands of letters before her untimely death at the age of 41 in July 1817. However, only 161 have survived to this day. Cassandra purged the letters in the 1840s, destroying a majority and censoring those that […]

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Sun, 21 Jul 2019 12:30:30 +0000
Summer music camps arent just for kids anymore

Kids arent the only ones about to head off to sleep-away summer camps. Scores of adults are packing bagsand musical instrumentsto spend a week at summer programs that let them experience camp food, lumpy beds, and music from 9:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.what could be better? I return to work energized, inspired, and at peace. […]

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Sat, 20 Jul 2019 09:30:37 +0000
Boris Artzybasheff, C. S. Lewis, and lost art

In September 1947 the paths of two great minds and almost exact contemporaries crossed when Boris Artzybasheff painted a portrait of C. S. Lewis for the cover ofTimemagazine. Lewis was by then an established name in Britain and a rising star in America, while the distinctive style (if not name) of Russian-born New Yorker Artzybasheff […]

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Fri, 19 Jul 2019 12:30:59 +0000
How will wars be fought in the future?

Russias actions in Ukraine, the rise (and apparent fall) of ISIL in Syria and northern Iraq, and Chinese activity in the South China Sea have prompted renewed debate about the character of war and conflict, and whether it is undergoing a fundamental shift. Such assertions about the apparent transformation of conflict are not new; one […]

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Fri, 19 Jul 2019 09:30:50 +0000
From the farm to rocket road: one engineers story

Retired engineer Henry Pohl can vividly recall his first encounter with a rocket. During the early 1950s, the Army drafted him and shipped him from Texas to the Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama. That dadgum thing looked pretty simple, he says of the rocket engine. It didnt look much bigger than the tractor engine back […]

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Thu, 18 Jul 2019 09:30:43 +0000
The paradox of alliances strong economics but fragile politics

Its not just in international relations that identity politics can sabotage opportunities to cooperate for mutual economic benefit.Much the same can happen to cooperation between firms. Organizations form alliances because they make strategic and economic sense. Yet often the potential for collaboration is undermined by the distrust and fears of the partners.

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Wed, 17 Jul 2019 12:30:38 +0000
Did Caravaggio paint Judith Beheading Holofernes?

A disconcerting exclusion of alternative views and scholarship has marked the very carefully choreographed two-year long build-up toward the most controversial sale of aseicentopicture this yearthat of the so-called ToulouseJudith Beheading Holofernes, ascribed toCaravaggio. The arguments presented in its favour look compelling. A contemporary document refers to it in Naples in 1607; acopyof it byLouis […]

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Wed, 17 Jul 2019 09:30:25 +0000
Idioms: the American heritage

Idioms, especially if we add proverbs and familiar quotations to them, are a shoreless ocean. Especially numerous are so-called gnomic sayings (aphorisms) like make hay while the sun shines, better safe than sorry, and a friend in need is a friend indeed. Their age is usually hard or even impossible to determine. Since most of them reflect peoples universal experience, they may be very old.

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Tue, 16 Jul 2019 09:30:50 +0000
A forgotten African satirist: A.B.C. Merriman-Labor

In 1904, twenty-six-year-old A.B.C. Merriman-Labor stamped the red dust of Freetowns streets from his shoes and headed for London. There he intended to prove his literary skill to the world. TheSierra Leone Weekly Newshad assured him that his color would no obstacle there, and he could go anywhere, wherever his merits, either intellectual or social, will take him.

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Sun, 14 Jul 2019 09:30:07 +0000
Twenty years since Eyes Wide Shut

Twenty years after Stanley Kubricks death and the release of his last film,Eyes Wide Shut, the film and its director have reached a peak of popularity and public interest. The film met with a decidedly mixed reception on its original release as audiences, led to believe they were about to see an erotic film with […]

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Sat, 13 Jul 2019 09:30:59 +0000
Nell Blaine, the artist who wouldnt allow disability to cramp her style

The wonderful and amazing thing about Nell Blainewhose polio attack came at age 37, during what appeared to be the peak of her careeris that the work she made afterward is far superior to the earlier paintings.

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Fri, 12 Jul 2019 09:30:37 +0000
How austerity politics hurts prisoners

The Battle of Dunkirkthe 1940 allied evacuation of 338,226 Belgian, British, and French troops from the beaches of Northern Francehas been continually accentuated as a critical moment of the World War II. In a miracle of deliverance, as Winston Churchill, the then-prime Minister called it, hundreds of thousands of soldiers came together in a resourceful feeling of togetherness. Today, Dunkirk remains a symbol of determination against adversity.

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Thu, 11 Jul 2019 09:30:45 +0000
The evolution of the book to the digital page

Ever the early-adopter, I recently bought myself a Kindle. The e-reader is now available in a variety of models pitched at a variety of price points. Mine is called a Paperwhite. The name, like much about the digital reading experience, looks to elide the gap between reading on paper and reading on a plastic screen.

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Wed, 10 Jul 2019 12:30:37 +0000
Standing in Galileos shadow: Why Thomas Harriot should take his place in the scientific hall of fame

The enigmatic Elizabethan Thomas Harriot never published his scientific work, so its no wonder that few people have heard of him. His manuscripts were lost for centuries, and its only in the past few decades that scholars have managed to trawl through the thousands of quill-penned pages he left behind. What they found is astonishinga glimpse into one of the best scientific minds of his day, at a time when modern science was struggling to emerge from its medieval cocoon.

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Wed, 10 Jul 2019 09:30:07 +0000
From rabbits to gonorrhea: clap and its kin

Three years ago, I discussed the origin of several kl formations, all of which were sound-symbolic: kl- appeared to suggest cleaving, cluttering, and the like. In this context, especially revealing is the etymology of cloth. The problem with such consonant groups is that there is rarely anything intrinsically symbolic in them.

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Tue, 09 Jul 2019 09:30:35 +0000
What Americas history of mass migration can teach us about attitudes to immigrants

International migration is one of the most pervasive social phenomena of our times. According to recent UN estimates, as of 2017, there were almost 260 million migrants around the world.

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Mon, 08 Jul 2019 09:30:33 +0000
The worrying future of trade in Africa

Africa is on the cusp of creating the African Continental Free Trade Area. This will be the first step on a long journey towards creating a single continental market with a customs union and free movement of people and investment similar to the European Union.

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Sun, 07 Jul 2019 09:30:52 +0000
Why the law protects liars, cheats, and thieves in personal relationships

So how does the law respond to duplicity within dating, sex, marriage, and family life? People often assume that intimate deception operates in a completely private realm where courts and legislatures play no role.

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Sat, 06 Jul 2019 09:30:53 +0000
The not-so ironic evolution of the term politically correct

Punctuation-wise, most of us fall between these two extremes. We are neither staccato nor breathless. Instead, we use punctuation to establish a comfortable pace for readers by grouping and emphasizing certain chunks of information.

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Fri, 05 Jul 2019 09:30:41 +0000
G.E. Moore his life and work Philosopher of the Month

G.E. Moore (1873-1958) was a British philosopher, who alongside Bertrand Russell and Ludwig Wittgenstein at Trinity College Cambridge, was a key protagonist in the formation of the analytic tradition and central figure during the golden age of philosophy.

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Thu, 04 Jul 2019 09:30:03 +0000
How technology is changing reproduction and the law

Millions of Americans rely on the likes of birth control, IVF, and genetic testing to make plans as intimate and far-reaching as any they ever make. This is no less than the medicine of miracles. It fills empty cradles, frees families from terrible disease, and empowers them to fashion their lives on their own terms.

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Wed, 03 Jul 2019 12:30:49 +0000
The gender riots that rocked Cambridge University in the 1920s

On 20 October 1921, a sombre procession took over Kings Parade, a usually bustling thoroughfare in Cambridge. A hearse made halting progress, bearing the weighty effigy of the Last Male Undergraduate, and accompanied in shuffling steps by Mere Males: bowed and wretched figures wearing long grey beards. Their sprightlier colleagues made speeches about the risks of female governance at the side of the road, hassled young women on bicycles and eventually raised the cry: We Dont Want Women!

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Wed, 03 Jul 2019 09:30:24 +0000
Etymology gleanings for June 2019

Like every journalist (and a blogger is a journalist of sorts), I have an archive. Sometimes I look through the discarded clippings and handwritten notes and find them too good to throw away. Below, Ill reproduce a few rescued tidbits.

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How feminism becomes a tool of neo-imperialism

Serene Khader explores the theory of "missionary feminism," a set of epistemic values that creates a filter for the Western world to view the situations of other non-Western world women, for gain.

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