birth of the modern american holiday
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Christmas: Inventing Tradition and Building Suburbia

The Christmas season has always been the site of deep tension. Today, these are primarily expressed in two ways: a critique of political correctness’ refusal to call Christmas by its name and concerns over consumerism’s excesses.

Not only do both criticisms fail to grasp the historical circumstances that gave birth to the modern Christmas, they also fail to comprehend the far-reaching consequences of its founding on the American way of life.

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anthropocene political universalism
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The Anthropocene: Unearthing Universalism and Resizing Political Narratives

The current geological age is defined by man-made climate and environmental change. The anthropocene crowns centuries of human activity and represents the intersecting of economic development and the biosphere.

Yet, ‘anthropocene’ is more than just a geological term. It lies at the intersection of science and politics, holding the universalist promise of science while falling prey to political recuperation.

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baudrillard zizek paris attacks terror
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What is the spirit of terrorism?

The term terrorism has been applied to a large spectrum of events and motives: from targeted and symbolic actions to mass shootings; from political radicalism at the turn-of-the-century to present-day religious fundamentalism.

Yet underlying its diversity, the asymmetrical violence of terrorism plunges the gaze of both terrorized and terrorist into the other’s subjectivity. With what effect?

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screenshot opening credits star wars geroge lucas
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Politics of Outer-Space: Star Wars

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… The opening line to every Star Wars film begins as a philosophical novel would: embarking on a voyage to an improbable land peopled with versions of ourselves.

While some still claim there is nothing political behind the Star Wars Trilogies, that assessment is far wide of the fictional world that George Lucas so carefully traced from our own.

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Herge Mark Mazower 20th century
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Tintin in the Dark Continent

Wherever Tintin travels throughout his journeys it is the darkness at the heart of the European Twentieth Century that he confronts.

What Mazower described as “the nightmarish revelation of the destructive potential of European civilization” is the latent fear throughout Hergé’s albums and the one Tintin’s morality seeks to counter.

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tarantino filmography historical perspective
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Quentin Tarantino on Violence and History

Tarantino’s style is often hailed/decried as a gratuitous aestheticism of violence.

However, explanations as to why that may be fail to grasp that although Tarantino’s stylized depiction of violence remains consistent throughout his career, his understanding of violence and the purpose it serves evolves in his work.

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