There have been many complaints about the boring commercials during last night’s Super Bowl, but for many of us, one commercial stood out among the rest. This was the spot from the Washington Post (narrated by Tom Hanks) that highlights the importance of journalism in a free democracy. It included images of reporters who have been killed over the last few years including Jamal Khashoggi, who is alleged to have been killed at the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul last year.
Washington Post Super Bowl message: Democracy Dies in Darkness Because knowing empowers us. Knowing helps us decide. Knowing keeps us free. For more than 140 years The Washington Post has been a key part of democracy, holding government accountable and safeguarding the interests of readers.
Movies, TV, comic books, novels, and music have helped to drive social change. Discussions about civil rights, LGBTQ rights, protesting war, supporting veterans, and many other topics have been explored through popular culture. The “entertainment” industry has been a form of self-reflection for society. What kinds of changes have been driven by popular culture? When we use popular culture in the classroom, what can we learn? This event is part of our One Book, One College program on the book Ms. Marvel.
In this lecture, Dr. Amani Wazwaz presents the life and achievements of the eighth century Muslim scholar Jabir Ibn Hayyan. The lecture introduces the role that the alchemist has played in cultural imagination and the place that Jabir ibn Hayyan has in the history of chemistry. This lecture is part of the MOSAICS Building Bridges Program.
The Alchemist Chemist: The Unnecessary Divide in the Life of Jabbir Ibn Hayyan
Some excellent detective work on the origins of Dracula!
“The London Library today unveiled a fascinating discovery that sheds new light on how Dracula was researched and written. We’ve found 26 books that are almost certainly the original copies that Bram Stoker used to help research his enduring classic.
Philip Spedding, the Library’s Development Director who made the discovery, commented: “Bram Stoker was a member of The London Library but until now we have had no indication whether or how he used our collection. Today’s discovery changes that and we can establish beyond reasonable doubt that numerous books still on our shelves are the very copies that he was using to help write and research his masterpiece.” (See London Library’s “The Books that Created Dracula“)
Philip Spedding looks at the books discovered in The London Library that were used by Bram Stoker to research Dracula
Librarians and journalists share many values. Namely, the belief that free and open information is vital to democracy and an open society. This week a few, year-end announcements from our colleagues in the world of journalism were made that should be highlighted.
You can learn more about the background to this story on the podcast “The Daily” here:
The Business of Selling Your Location Smartphone apps track a staggering amount of data about our whereabouts every day. That data has become a hot commodity.
“A New York Times investigation has found that the information being collected about us through apps on our smartphones is far more extensive than most of us imagine — or are aware we have consented to.”