History

  1. There is one moment from the cross-country trip I took with my mother in 2007 that will probably forever live in my mind. We were on Highway 80 going through Nebraska in the middle of a blizzard. The road was invisible, buried under a sheet of snow.

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  2. You have just swept someone a magnificent, yet insolent, leg.

    You have interrupted a game of wist to introduce the players to your ward.

    You have been pronounced a social success by the greatest bitch in Paris.

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  3. Margaret Cavendish, Anne Conway, Elisabeth of Bohemia, Mary Astell, Damaris Masham, Catherine Cockburn, Bathsua Makin. You can take a philosophy degree, including Early Modern philosophy, and not come across a single one of these women. The only name likely to ring any bells for an undergraduate philosopher is Elisabeth of Bohemia, and only because of her role in responding to Descartes’ philosophy.

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  4. 1. I know the Kitty Genovese story wasn't exactly as egregious as it's become in our popular imagination, but Lord love me, I'm a follower, and there are few things I love more than the diminished moral culpability that comes with being part of a big crowd.

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  5. The Gore Vidal collection at Harvard is substantial; it includes 394 cartons of material that take up 367 linear feet. The library also holds a 1-carton archive of James Trimble III. Just a few minutes with the Trimble archive made it clear that it was not complied by Vidal, or by anyone who knew Vidal or Jimmie, but by an outsider, whom I will call Roger.

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  6. Alternate Gilmore Girls' Series Finales: The Many Imaginary Deaths of Christopher Hayden
    I. The Motorcycle Crash
    II. Eaten By Bear at Zoo
    III. Slowly Crushed By His Collection of Sweet Lids

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  7. Hiring Nikki as managing editor two years ago was easily the best professional decision Nicole and I have ever made. I STILL HAVEN'T MET HER, which is outrageous, but nobody's fault (surely it's somebody's fault), but everything she has ever written here has been absolute gold, and I want to make sure everyone gets a chance to re-read her back catalog and say nice things to her on Twitter.

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  8. I love Nicole so much, and I'm getting hit with the yearbook feelings, where I want to grab all of you in the hallways and make you promise that we are really going to keep in touch, and I have been going through her archives this week and I wanted to remind you of some of her greatest hits. WE NEVER APPRECIATED HER ENOUGH.

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  9. In February 1943, when wartime rationing was at its height and many foreign luxuries were unobtainable in Britain, Marjorie Barber sent her friend, novelist Dorothy L. Sayers, a lemon in a jeweler's box.

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  10. 71 BC – Spartacus, leader of a slave rebellion against the Roman Empire. Although he was presumed killed in battle during the Third Servile War, his body was never found and his fate remains unknown.

    probably dead by now though

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  11. It started with "Secret Places in Death Valley: The Boxcar Cabin" (sparked by the conversation we had about the Death Valley Germans in last week's link roundup) and things just went nuts from there.

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  12. Now that we've all finished constructing our memorial altars for The Toast (mine is made out of light rye, maple butter, & tears), it's time to look at a few more makeup trends through the ages. Normally these pieces focus on a large period of time & what was happening worldwide(-ish), but this column is going to zoom-focus on Japan's brief stint as the home of manba & ganguro makeup & fashion.

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  13. In 1629, a servant in colonial Virginia came to the local court’s notice for allegedly fornicating with a fellow servant. Although the initial charge was fornication, things rapidly got more complicated as the authorities realized they had no idea whether Thomas – or Thomasine – Hall was male or female, and witness accounts conflicted. They called for an examination by several women, who agreed that Hall was female; later, a group of men examining Hall…

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  14. In these years at Berkeley, I’ve come to see that the work of learning history—to, as one might say, do history—has profoundly shaped how I’ve learned to understand my own past and my mother’s.

    Before I say anything more, know this: It’s okay that my mother isn’t here today.

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  15. "Le droit du seigneur" = the droit of the seigneur

    "Primae noctis" = the most noctis

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