Nowadays, cynicism is associated with disengagement, apathy, and defeatism. The modern day cynic is seen as the optimist’s opposite. Optimists are generally seen as engaged, happy, and positive people. In many ways, these qualities also describe the Classical Cynic. How is it then that we get from Cynicism to cynicism? As with most explanations, it helps to start from the beginning.
My two passions are creative writing and helping others express themselves through the written word. Some of the best teachers I've encountered were concise prose and engaging stories. Hopefully, what I write can fill that same role for others.
Scientific discoveries reach the general public through schooling and news stories, though occasionally this kind of information gets filtered through the lens of pop culture. When it comes to dinosaurs, Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park is a prime example of this. Insights and ideas gleaned from science can inform new and creative plot elements or action set pieces, though the same is true of scientific distortions and misunderstandings. Rather than nitpicking elements of a single film, this article will briefly highlight the areas in which our understanding of dinosaurs has evolved over the past few decades.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has several branches and initiatives aimed at promoting the subjects in its name across the globe. One of these is the World Heritage Committee which, among other things, decides what locations are worth preserving for various reasons. These reasons are grouped together in a list of ten selection criteria, each denoted by a Roman numeral. To explain the Committee’s selection criteria and World Heritage sites more broadly let us go through this list and examine an illustrative example for every criterion.
Petroleum (or oil) and natural gas are widely used sources of fuel. Around the world many transportation, energy, and heating infrastructures depend in large part on one or both of these hydrocarbon-rich fuels, petrochemical products. While in the past it may have seemed inconceivable that people would have to step away from fossil fuels, climate change increasingly necessitates greener alternatives. It is also hard to imagine life without plastics. For many applications, such as in healthcare, there may be no better materials. A future with zero plastic is neither warranted nor desirable, but the threats to various ecosystems are likely to force the development of greener and more sustainable materials.
The earliest recorded instance of heeled shoes comes from tenth century Persia. Mounted soldiers wore shoes with heels to make it easier to keep their feet in their stirrups, as the heels would catch the back of the stirrup’s tread and stop their feet from sliding in and out. This same use can be seen to this day with cowboys and other jobs that involve riding horses. During this period heels went from being a masculine sign of strength and wealth to a non-gendered court fashion to a feminine fashion statement.
When discussing space art, one can mean at least two different things. The term can refer to art made on Earth that is then sent into outer space, or art produced while in space. Going with the former definition, our exhibits come down to Earth’s closest neighbor in the Solar System and the rest of the cosmos.
Climate change affects the entirety of the earth’s surface, and nowhere more so than our oceans. While our seas cover about two-thirds of the earth’s surface they absorb over ninety percent of the additional heat attributable to global warming. Both land masses and bodies of water absorb and reflect solar radiation that rebounds off of the greenhouse gases trapped in our atmosphere, but the latter is generally more absorptive and holds on to heat longer due to differences in physical properties. This of course has led to increases in global seawater temperatures, which has and continues to endanger several aquatic species. This article will examine one of those species and go over human efforts to preserve it.
Every wondered what was the history of and use of Mummies? Look no further: Educational article on the use of mummies as medicine, the unique mummy business and sales throughout history.
For the average person, washing their hair every day or every few days is a matter of hygienic preference rather than necessity. Unless their work or pastime brings them in contact with dirt or involves physical exertion, it is unlikely that their hair would go from being clean to truly dirty in the span of twenty-four hours.
So, what is the true science behind our “dirty” hair and the ingredients in our shampoo?
For all its complexities, and thanks in part to them, English is a highly versatile language. Several other languages have government affiliated academies that dictate their proper usage, voting on things like the addition of new words. No such body exists for English, making its development less top-down and more of a dialogue between those at the top and the general masses. One area where this can easily be seen is with loanwords.
One way of looking at history is in terms of progress. Many historians and fans of the subject laud Rome for its advances in military organization, infrastructure, and civics. Similar adulation is often heaped upon the Renaissance for the strides made in philosophy, arts, and sciences during that period, which in turn set the stage for the Age of Enlightenment. But what of the time between shining antiquity and the rekindling that was the Renaissance? lternately called the Dark Ages, the Middle Ages, and the Medieval Ages, the time period from roughly the 5th century to the 15th century is usually framed in the West as its own era of history.
The basics of rewilding (at least in North America) are the Three C’s: Cores, Corridors, and Carnivores. Rewilding was developed in the 1990’s as a new approach to ecological restoration. Proponents have characterized it as being active rather than reactive. What this means is that instead of viewing conservation as stemming a tide or becoming shepherds to ever-declining animal populations, rewilding is focused on restoring the equilibrium of ecological systems. This is accomplished through a variety of methods that are grouped together under the Three C’s.
Shorthand is the use of abbreviated spellings and or simplified symbols to record information in a quicker, more compact form. The opposite of this is longhand, which generally uses either block lettering or a cursive script. While it takes longer to fully write something out in longhand, all or most of those fluent in a given language will understand what is written down, as opposed to shorthand, which requires special training. In light of modern recording and word processing technologies, the decline in shorthand’s use seems inevitable, with newer inventions allowing those who only known longhand to reap the benefits of shorthand. And yet several shorthand systems thrive in a few niche industries. To fully appreciate shorthand and its resilience, one must go back to its origins.
Polar bears, Siberian tigers, our friendly neighborhood bees – what do they all have in common? That’s right. They’re all endangered species!
What is sometimes informally referred to as the endangered species list is actually called the Red List of Threatened Species.
What was navigation like in the past? How did people get from one place to another? Here, we learn a brief history of navigational tools, including the history of terrestrial and celestial navigation tools.
Architecture is a form of art. One major form of architecture is Brutalist architecture that arose in the beginnings of WWII. In this lesson, we learn about symbolism in architecture and Brutalism’s origins, history, and impact.
Staple crops are foods that shape the dietary foundations of one or more regions. Rice, wheat, and corn provide over half of the world population’s caloric intake. In this lesson, we learn about the history of wheat and its global impact.