One of the skills we need to develop if we are to be insightful observers of culture is recognizing that cultural artifacts (the things humans make) are not neutral. They embody, shape or legitimate certain understandings of the world. I was reminded of this fact while listening to some of the recent reports of the death of . . . → Read More: Vidal Sassoon, Haircuts and Worldviews
Channel-surfing through some daytime re-runs on television last week, which I don’t get the pleasure (?!) of doing that often, I came across a fascinating interview between Oprah Winfrey and Portia de Rossi from Nov 2010. For those of you too young or too uncultured to remember Ally McBeal, Australian-born de Rossi starred as lawyer . . . → Read More: Portia de Rossi, Ally McBeal and Anorexia…
Despite the wit of cynics the Harry Potter narrative is coming to its final cinematic conclusion in July, with the movie release of the second part of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
With the immense popularity of the Potter saga, millions of young adults have grown up literarily as readers of the books and imaginatively immersed . . . → Read More: Harry Potter and Fairy Stories
Our society is built on the inexorable logic of choice. If we didn’t choose it, then it’s probably not good.
As a result of our obsession with choice, we discovered, some time during the twentieth century, the equally inexorable pain of choice anxiety. Too many options and we can’t cope.
See the following video [thanks to Nick for . . . → Read More: Liking nuance
When a culture builds something big and intends it to last, it tells us a lot about what story that culture is living out of.
Ancient Egypt built pyramids to ensure the resurrection of their Pharaonic internees. Medieval Europe built cathedrals to draw the eye of the beholder upwards to the transcendent. Imperial China built the Great . . . → Read More: The ten thousand year clock
You’ve already decided that the world needed to see how exotic your last holiday was, and how you spent New Years. Your recent status posts have been funny, full of pathos and acerbic wit. You have a camera app that allows people to see your life in grainy sepia, as that conveys just the right edge . . . → Read More: The Museum of Me
Don’t worry, this post will be short.
Apparently, the typical reader today can’t handle articles or posts that are too long or too complex, being so easily distracted. This is certainly the claim of Nicholas Carr in a much discussed article published in The Atlantic Monthly a few years back, “Is Google making us stupid?” In it . . . → Read More: Easily distracte…
Lindsay Lohan has recently appeared in a French fashion magazine posed as Jesus. On the front cover of Purple she stands in white, arms outstretched, a band on her fore-head looking a little like a crown of thorns.
The pose is unmistakable and sadly unremarkable. Lohan is not the first celebrity to pose as Jesus; nor will . . . → Read More: Jesus and Lohan
We have written a book. The Insect and the Buffalo: How the story of the Bible changes everything, is a short introduction to the story of scripture written to help people re-read, re-think and re-engage with the Bible.
Here’s how we describe it in the blurb:
When we read the Bible, it’s easy to feel like God wrote . . . → Read More: The Insect and the Buffalo
“I want I want I want it now”.
No, these aren’t the words of Veruca Salt in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (see below), but lyrics from the new Black Eyed Peas song “The Now Generation”, off their latest album The E.N.D.
Here’s the context.
This is the now generation
This is the generation now
We are the now generation
I want . . . → Read More: The Now Generation