Articles tagged atheism, agnosticism, religion, history

‘Under the Big Black Sun’ Tells of an L.A. Before the Kids From Orange County Arrived

They had the neutron bomb, The Masque, and all the youthful energy you'd ever want to muster. What became of the early L.A. punks, then?

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‘Elvis & Nixon’ and Histories and Fates Captured in a Photo

Even as this film gets bogged down in jokes and speculations, it makes the point that performance is its own kind of truth.

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‘Agnostic’: Against Theists and Atheists

Lesley Hazleton’s brand of agnosticism simply holds open a space for contemplative thinking.

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Kurt Vonnegut: Our Reluctant, Agnostic, Hippy Guru

Vonnegut's timeless stories challenge the assumptions, institutions, and ideologies that so delimit critical thinking and open-mindedness.

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Let’s Play at Kentucky Fried Chicken, America

In this game we consumers are reduced to plastic playthings, happy to be fingered. This and other thoughts on American culture.

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How the US Government Spins ‘The War on Leakers’

Lloyd C. Gardner makes an alarming case for the elusiveness of American democracy and the astounding ignorance in which it operates.

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1 Apr 2016 // 3:00 AM

The Banjo: America’s African Instrument

Laurent Dubois' biography of one of America’s iconic folk instruments spans continents and cultures. In this excerpt, we explore the banjo's humble origins.

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‘Small Town Talk’ Both Celebrates and Interrogates Woodstock’s Past

If you're looking for a true-to-life portrait of the way cultural memory evolves and is shaped within the context of a small town, this is a profound case study.

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The Paper Trail: An Unexpected History of a Revolutionary Invention

Paper created a world in which free thinking could flourish, and brought disciplines from science to music into a new age.

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The Brazen Age: New York City and the American Empire: Politics, Art, and Bohemia

In this excerpt of David Reid's rich and thorough history of New York City, 1945 -1950, we read of Albert Camus' first impression of the city as “a hideous, inhuman city" of "violent light".

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The Sensual Machine: ‘The Typewriter Revolution’

Richard Polt’s work is simply a confessional love letter to a most charming and pioneering creation.

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Waiting for Buddy Guy: Chicago Blues at the Crossroads

In the late '70s and early '80s, British blues fan Alan Harper became a transatlantic pilgrim to Chicago. He came to listen to the blues. This rich memoir captures not only the music, but the memories of many of Chicago's great blues legends and others who lived during this important era.

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‘Small Town Talk’ and the Rise and Fall of Woodstock

Small Town Talk offers an in-depth look at the rise and fall of not only the town of Woodstock, but also those who made an icon of '60s idealism.

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‘Heads’ Traverses the Intracranial Landscape of Minds Set Loose By Myriad Chemical Compounds

In his sprawling exploration of psychedelic America, Jarnow finds himself ensconced within the Deadhead camp, often to the disservice of other acid-forged scenes.

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An Epoch of Annihilation Whose Consequences Still Reverberate

In Fire and Blood, Historian Enzo Traverso sets his sights on two concepts: the facile equation of totalitarianisms, and the equally facile belief in the inevitability of historical progress.

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What Does Randy Newman Say When He Talks With God?

One of the less celebrated satirists of religion, a study of some of Randy Newman's key songs reveals a subtle subversive at work.

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The American Story in 6.5 Hours: Criterion Restores Jan Troell’s Emigration Epic

Jan Troell's masterful double header looks like two films and plays like one as it takes the Nilsson family from 19th century Sweden to life in the new world.

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Is It Always Better to Think Things Through Twice?

Columnist Stanley Fish's collection of works has readers reconsidering how they form their opinions.

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‘No Más Bebés’: Sterilized Without Consent

As the struggle for reproductive rights continues, we might look back on history in order to understand the consequences of denying women sovereignty over their own bodies.

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The Story Is In His Eyes in ‘The Finest Hours’

Ray's (Casey Affleck) eyes tell their own story, more hauntingly and more urgently, than any of the plot's clunky machinations.

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The Sound and the Warmth: An Interview with Cardiknox

// Sound Affects

"New York's Cardiknox are taking more steps in their goal of world domination. With their debut record Portrait out, the band are dreaming big, wanting to transcend the indie pop scene.

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