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Pumpkin Bread

The counterculture made it in the news today!  Yay!

Author Ken Kesey poses in 1997 with his bus, "Further", a descendant of the vehicle that carried Kesey and the Merry Pranksters on the 1964 trip immortalized in Tom Wolfe's book, The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Kesey, who died in 2001, is the subject of the new documentary Magic Trip.

Here‘s a link to the Fresh Air interview on NPR.

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This week I read Mary Jezer’s Home Comfort and The Dark Ages.  I came in contact with Jezer when studying WIN‘s special men’s issue in 1974 for my Masters thesis.  With all of the chaos going on the the world, one of the quotes that Jezer included in The Dark Ages really resonated with me:

“The problem is not how to get rid of the enemy, but rather how to get rid of the last victo.  For what is a victo but one who has learned that violence works.  Who will teach him a lesson?” – Niccolo Tucci in Politics Magazine, July 1945

Home Comforts – a collection of perspectives on creating, living in, and leaving the countercultural commune Total Loss Farm in the 60s and 70s.  Enjoy this delicious recipe:

This kind of reminds me of a recipe  for sour cream waffles I found at the Amelia Earhart exhibit at Purdue University.  The recipe I saw was accompanied with an article emphasizing Earhart’s domesticity despite her (masculine) influence in aviation.  They may not be delicious, but I’m too much of a history nerd not to make them.

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Girls Sweep the Google Science Fair

Winners of the first Google Science Fair (from left to right): Lauren Hodge, Shree Bose and Naomi Shah. (Courtesy of The Official Google Blog)

From NPR’s Here and Now with Robin Young

The first-ever Google Science Fair ended last month with females winning all three age categories.

The grand prize went to 17-year-old Shree Bose. The soon-to-be senior at Fort Worth Country Day School in Texas won for her groundbreaking findings into how to prevent resistance to the ovarian cancer drug Cisplatin.

Could this be a sign of the strides women have made in science and engineering?

Statistics show though they’re competing equally with men in terms of receiving science degrees, they still make up a significantly smaller percentage of the science workforce.

The key to advancement, some experts say, is what Shree Bose found in the university scientist who supervised her research: a strong mentor.

Bose told Here & Now‘s Robin Young that finding that mentor wasn’t easy.

“I was a 15-year old girl just randomly asking professors if I could work in their lab, and I got rejected,” she said. “The one who actually accepted me was a woman herself.”

Read about their winning projects here.

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Gender and Super Heroes/oines

In light of Captain America’s soon-to-be film debut, I saw this article today on the Good Men Project:

“Captain America is the Best Man” by Mark D.:

As a longtime comics fan, I find inspiration in many of the superheroes whose adventures I read every month, but none inspire me as much as Captain America. Simply put, to me, Cap stands as an example of the best we can be. He embodies all of the classical virtues that are just as important now as they were in the days of the ancient Greeks, including honesty, courage, loyalty, perseverance, and, perhaps most importantly, honor (in particular, military honor). While I can’t be as strong or fast as Cap, I can hope to be as honest, courageous, and honorable.

(Although Mark D. argues that Captain America has moved beyond his jingoist, hegemonically masculine, and paternalistic roots, in a post-911 age these historic roots cannot be denied.)

And that’s great and all.  The guy seems just swell.

But it got me thinking – where are all of the honest, courageous, and strong superheroines?  Most of them are either crazy or can’t control their powers or they’re young with teenage troubles or sex on the brain. 

Literally I can only think of Xena.  Any thoughts?

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Student Activism in the 1960s and 1970s

Most people my age nowadays don’t give a horse’s patootie about politics, human rights, justice, activism, or change.  In my research I’m really interested in understanding what inspired/fueled the social and political movements of the counterculture (’65ish-’75ish), and what led to its demise.

Here’s what I’ve been into lately for my research:

While the first two chapters elaborate on the, economic, social, and legal motivations for youth activism in the 1960s, the third chapter focuses on college campuses where much of the fervent radicalism sprung forth. 

But before I share a segment, you should check out the “documentary” Chicago 10, which combines archival footage, animation, and music examining the 1968 Democratic National Convention and the subsequent trial.  You can rent the film from Netflix and read more info from the wiki page.  Here’s a clip:

Here is a selection from Chalmer’s book, in which he describes the extent of youth activism during the counterculture, as well as the violent repercussions of their actions.  I’ve included some links for more information:

“Students and recent graduates from more than two hundred colleges and universities – public, private, and parochial – took part int he 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer.  Swarthmore College students were arrested in Chester, PA; and University of Florida Students went to jail in St. Augustine.  Penn State had its Committee for Student Freedom; a Campus Freedom Democratic Party was organized at the University of Nebraska; and University of Texas students campaigned to desegregate college bathrooms, with the slogan “Let my people go.”  During 1964-1965, there were some kind of protest on a majority of the nation’s four-year campuses.

Vietnam and the draft changed the pattern and intensified the conflict.  Militancy increased on Southern black campuses.  Police and National Guardsmen shot students at South Carolina State, Jackson State, and North Carolina A & T. 

Black student occupied administrative offices at Chicago, Brandeis, and dozens of other colleges, and brought rifles into the Willard Straight Union at Cornell.  At numerous colleges, students sat in against military recruiting and napalm’s manufacturer, Dow Chemical.  Campus ROTC buildings were set on fire.  University officials were help hostage at Connecticut’s Trinity College and at San Fernando State, as well as at Columbia University. 

In the final year of the decade, bombing threats ran into the thousands.  People were injured in explosions at Pomona College, San Francisco State, and Santa Barbara, and a graduate student was killed by a bomb at the University of Wiconsin…The National Guard…was called on more than two hundred times in civil disorders on American campuses.” (72-73)

When Nixon sent troops to Cambodia, violence on college campuses escalated:

“The burst of anger on the campuses became an explosion when National Guardsmen fired into a crowd, killing four students and wounding others at Ohio’s Kent State University.  Ten days later, in an unrelated incident, police fired into a women’s dormitory at Mississippi’s black Jackson State University and killed two more. 

 There were strikes and protests on nearly one-third of the nation’s twenty-five hundred colleges and universities, and tens of thousands of student protestors converged on Washington to gather around the White House and the Lincoln Memorial.”  (77)

As a result of all this student outrage, President Nixon appointed a Commission on Campus Unrest.  Where has all this passion gone?

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China’s Exploding Watermelons

Info from Oiwan Lam at GlobalVoices.org – an international blog for human justice issues.

A few months ago, local state media exposed that farmers in China’s Jiangsu province were affected by the problem of “exploding watermelons” due to the overuse of chemicals. On 5 July, 2011, the Ministry of Agriculture asserted [1] [zh] that the chemical growth enhancer for watermelon is safe as the toxic residue level is low.

The Ministry also stated that if growth chemicals banned in China, the whole agricultural industry sector would be affected.

According to Hutong news summary [2] [zh], the watermelons were exploding in the fields like balloons. The growth enhancer involved in the incident is Forchlorfenuron [3], which is also legal in the United States. As the growth enhancer drains fruit of its flavor, farmers have also been applying chemical sweeteners and dyes to the watermelons.

Don't blame the watermelons, according to the Ministry of Agriculture

Plastic watermelon

The latest scandal is the discovery of plastic material inside a watermelon in Jinan city. Here is a television news segment showing what a plastic watermelon looks like.

Read the rest of the story or comments from other international bloggers here.


Article printed from Global Voices: http://globalvoicesonline.org

URL to article: http://globalvoicesonline.org/2011/07/08/china-exploding-watermelon-is-safe/

URLs in this post:

[1] asserted: http://www.caijing.com.cn/2011-07-06/110766306.html

[2] Image: http://www.hudong.com/wiki/%E7%88%86%E7%82%B8%E8%A5%BF%E7%93%9C

[3] Forchlorfenuron: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forchlorfenuron

[4] Image: http://weibo.com/1642088277/l4EWC7XGN#a_comment

[5] http://t.cn/apCbAA: http://t.cn/apCbAA

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Santa Claus vs. Gender

 

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Photos of Child Brides

Photos by Stephanie Sinclair, as part of her co-authored project in National Geographic, “Too Young to Wed.”
Listen to her interview with Michele Norris at NPR here.
Also, see her photo essay “The Bride Price: In Afghanistan some daughters to be married are just children” in the New York Times Magazine (see the third page – it is precious).

“I strongly believe there is not just a need for awareness-raising and prevention work, but we must find ways to help these girls who are already in these marriages — be it through giving financial incentives to their families to let them stay in school, or vocational training so they can have more say in their lives and households. Quality medical treatment is also needed for girls who are giving birth at these young ages. These girls need long-term solutions. There is no quick fix.”  (Sinclair)

Stephanie Sinclair/National Geographic "Whenever I saw him, I hid. I hated to see him," Tahani (in pink) recalls of the early days of her marriage to Majed, when she was 6 and he was 25. The young wife posed for this portrait with former classmate Ghada, also a child bride, outside their mountain home in Hajjah, Yemen.

Stephanie Sinclair/National Geographic Although early marriage is the norm in her small Nepali village, 16-year-old Surita wails in protest as she leaves her family's home, shielded by a traditional wedding umbrella and carried in a cart to her new husband's village.

Stephanie Sinclair/National Geographic Asia, a 14-year-old mother, washes her new baby girl at home in Hajjah while her 2-year-old daughter plays. Asia is still bleeding and ill from childbirth yet has no education or access to information on how to care for herself.

Stephanie Sinclair/National Geographic Long after midnight, 5-year-old Rajani is roused from sleep and carried by her uncle to her wedding. Child marriage is illegal in India, so ceremonies are often held in the wee hours of morning. It becomes a secret the whole village keeps, explained one farmer.

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