Category: humanities

The Magic of Music: History, Cognitive Boost, and Music in Medicine

There is some universal beauty in the harmonies and melodies that dance their way to an ear in weaving sound waves. Music has been an integral part of everyday life since the glorious sounds of 500 BCE Ancient Greece and Rome. In the last few decades, the industry has grown to encompass over a thousand different genres and continues to expand and evolve alongside the world. Many recognize music as a reflection of their mood: upbeat to go along with a night out with friends, mellow to accompany the endless waterworks, or maybe rock and roll to fit a certain rebellious phase of life. However, behind the curtain, music can work all forms of magic on the mind. In fact, listening to music can increase cognitive performance, stimulate pain reduction, and promote stress relief.

Mass Media vs Local Journalism: A Pillar of American Democracy

In recent years, the labels of “fake news” and “the enemy of the people” have been prevalent when talking about the media, especially from the White House. The hostile rhetoric from Washington has had a considerable impact on the public: Americans’ trust in mass media is at 41%, a significant 4% drop from the previous year. Additionally, partisanship has dramatically increased as many Americans opt to solely consume news media that perpetuate their beliefs, leading news companies to produce blatantly partisan content, and thus, further promoting partisanship among their readers. This cycle creates an echo chamber that results in a sharply divided and often misinformed population.

Psychology 101: The Stanford Prison Experiment

What happens when you put good people in an evil place? Does humanity win over evil, or does evil triumph? Philip Zimbardo, a psychologist and a professor at Stanford University posed the same exact question in 1971, thereby leading to what is known as The Stanford Prison Experiment (SPE). The experiment was originally created to uncover the truth about human nature, a more in-depth look on what our true ambitions were, what really drove us. Zimbardo began by choosing 24 volunteers, making 12 of them “guards” and the other 12 “prisoners”.  They were taken to a prison simulation, a fabricated illusion to make the volunteers feel as if they were actually in prison. He began by  giving the guards ultimate power and left the prisoners vulnerable. This evidently led to a distinction of power between the two groups. 45 years later, people still ponder the  question that drove the experiment to its end. Was this study ethically right?  The Stanford Prison Experiment was not ethically right, it stripped volunteers of emotion temporarily, forcing them to turn against each other and was physically harmful to the majority of the participants. 

John Muir’s My First Summer In the Sierra Book Analysis and Review

Throughout John Muir’s book, “My First Summer In the Sierra ”, he describes, as the title suggests, the time he spent in the High Sierra in the years prior to his strong conservation efforts. During this time he worked as a supervisor for a sheep dive. This book serves as Muir’s personal journal, detailing everything he saw and did during his time. Recording descriptions of flora and fauna as well as collection data in order to display the importance and beauty of the world around us.

The Egungun Festival

Egungun is a form of ancestor worship where costumed dancers channel their deceased relatives as they parade through the streets. Family-oriented versions of this practice exist too, though the best known style of Egungun has to be the communal festival. The aims of both versions include remembrance, celebration, the earning of blessings, and lineal continuity through tradition.

Freddy Mamani’s New Andean Architecture

Most artistic movements are named after the fact, often by critics, to group together the works of artists that share certain characteristics or that are in reaction to specific events and thus coincide thematically. Counter to this academic pattern is la nueva arquitectura andina (or the New Andean Architecture). The term was coined by the style’s creator: Freddy Mamani Silvestre, who goes by Freddy Mamani professionally.

Margaret Chase Smith’s Speech of a Lifetime

The American experiment was founded on the idea of a democracy where the people hold the ultimate power over the government. But when the government oversteps its power; when it threatens to endanger individual rights, it takes someone with true courage to stand up for the America public. Some of the most striking examples of blatant abuse of power in the last century occurred during the Cold War. From 1947 to 1991, the Capitalist United States (US) and the Communist Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) clashed in a series of escalating economic and political tensions. In the midst of this tumultuous period, US government officials became concerned that communist sympathizer would collude with Soviet spies and endanger national security. The most vocal advocate for the “Red Scare” was Republican Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin. McCarthy came under the national spotlight during his speech in Wheeling, West Virginia, when he claimed that 205 State Department employees were known communist infiltrators (Achter). Although he lacked definitive evidence to back his claim, McCarthy continued a long string of accusations against celebrities, politicians, and nearly anyone who disagreed with him. McCarthy’s campaign to “expose” communist infiltrators caused innocent Americans to lose their careers and reputations, and fueled McCarthy’s rise to power. This period of mass, unsubstantiated paranoia eventually became known as “McCarthyism” (Achter). Few dared to challenge him, for fear of becoming his next target; At least not until a woman by the name of Margaret Chase Smith stepped into the political fray.

Standardized Tests are Necessary for Learning – True or False? A Look Into the Recent AP Testing Situation

enough, the COVID-19 pandemic has made it necessary for students to take these tests at home – and in only 45 minutes. Outrage over failed submissions and website problems has prompted the media to focus on the CollegeBoard and the real purpose and necessity of standardized testing. Is a test really enough to test a student’s true knowledge of a subject? Here, we will analyze the history of standardized testing, delve into the recent AP test situation, and consider the pros and cons of standardized tests.

Philosophy 101 – Cynicism Then and Now: Definition and Classical Cynicism vs Modern Cynicism

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.

2021 AP English Exam – Literature 101: Literary and Poetry Terms Vocabulary Study Guide – 125 Most Common Literary Terms and Definitions

In this guide, we share 125 most common literary and poetry terms along with their definitions based on the greatest works of Literature and Poems in preparation for the AP English Exam. From dynamic characters and tragedy to comedy and alliteration, we explore the wide range of terminology and their definitions studied in high schools, colleges, and universities.

Click! Introduction to Photography 101

Photography is much more complex than taking photos on a camera. Photography in its most basic definition dates back to ancient China, where the use of a camera obscura was first documented by a Chinese philosopher in the fifth century B.C.  A camera obscura is the phenomenon where a small pinhole on a wall of a dark room allows light to come in. On the wall opposite to the pinhole, an upside-down image of the outside is illuminated. The science behind this strange phenomenon lies in the basic principles of optics, the study of light. Light travels in straight lines until it is blocked by a material, in which case the angle of the light changes. This concept of capturing light and forming an image was studied for hundreds of years, leading to the invention of microscopes to look at tiny living organisms, telescopes to look at the stars, and cameras to take pictures. 

Psychology 101: Crowd Psychology and The Theory of Gustave Le Bon

Crowds are often overlooked as a segment of psychology. Most people would like to say that they are independent and trail away from what others do, however, much goes unnoticed when talking about the human behaviour of an individual when placed in a large mass of others. This type of psychology becomes a unique aspect of how one may think purely based off of the interests and situation of a crowd. There are several theories and the concept itself plays a large role in several real-world situations with effective consequences.

UNESCO World Heritage: 10 Travel Sites and How They Were Selected

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.

From Warrior Footwear to High Fashion: The Origin of Heels

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.

The Top Ten Best Apps for Learning a Language

The Top Ten Best Apps for Learning a Language: What better way to spend some free time during quarantine than by learning a language? Learning a language is scientifically proven to lower your chances of dementia and Alzheimers, increase your intelligence, and improve your concentration. It also opens up your range of outreach and communication to a much wider, more global scale, making the skill very appealing to employers and job-seekers alike. In this article, we will list the top ten best smartphone applications to utilize in your language learning endeavors, as well as list the languages that they offer.

Loanwords and the Evolution of English

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.

An Overview of Shorthand: History and Types of Shorthand

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.

Macroeconomics: The Definition of GDP and Its Implications

GDP is the universal measure of income among different countries. We’ve heard of the term GDP multiple times, but what exactly is GDP, and how do we measure an entire country’s income? GDP, Gross Domestic Product, measures the total value of all final goods and services produced in the economy of a country during a given year. Important points that need special attention in the definition of GDP are ‘total,’ ‘final,’ ‘country,’ and ‘a given year.’

Freud’s Psychology: Psychoanalysis, Id Ego Superego, and Dream Interpretation

Chances are, you’ve heard of the Oedipus complex or the idea that your dreams reveal your inner desires. The creator of these ideas was Sigmund Freud, an Austrian neurologist and the founding father of psychoanalysis. His ideas and theories still remain very influential in the fields of psychology, psychiatry, and psychotherapy, and their impact can even be seen in the visual arts and humanities.