History & Classics

Fifteen Eighty Four


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  • 25 Sep 2023
    Spike Gibbs

    Political Peasants? Local authority in late medieval and early modern England

    In the classic 1975 film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, one scene sees King Arthur debate with two self-proclaimed anarcho-syndicalist peasants, who outline a complex democratic system of decision making which contrasts with Arthur’s claim to power as King through the gift of Excalibur. The scene is clearly played for laughs, placing contemporaneous political debates […]

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  • 13 Sep 2023
    Xuelei Huang

    Chinese History through the Nose

    How did past environments, objects, and people smell? What can aromas and stenches tell us about history and culture? Scents of China takes you on a smell-walk through modern Chinese history, tracing stories about opium, dried fish, Florida water, cesspools, class enemies, and many other sweet, stinky, and unnameable odours. We might have been told […]

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  • 28 Aug 2023
    Maria Gerolemou, George Kazantzidis

    Rethinking the Human Body: Human-Machinic Intersections in the Greco-Roman World

    How modern is the concept of a posthuman, mechanical body which extends beyond its flesh and skin and interacts with inorganic material to the extent of blurring the boundaries between its deep nature and that of the inanimate objects and technological artefacts that surround it? Can the function of a human body be fully explained […]

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  • 17 Jul 2023
    Robert Kubinec

    Arabs Want Democracy—But Not With Corruption

    Despite the costly efforts of Arab activists and citizens over the past decade of the Arab Uprisings, today no Arab state can claim to be fully democratic. Two countries, Egypt and Tunisia, traveled farthest down the path towards democracy, and Tunisia witnessed ten years of democratic elections–but today neither country protects the rights of citizens […]

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  • 14 Jul 2023
    Matthew Titolo

    Privatization and Its Discontents

    Infrastructure and privatization are enduring topics in modern political discourse. Privatization and Its Discontents: Infrastructure, Law, and American History places these contemporary hot topics in perspective, identifying today’s debates as deeper problems within liberal statecraft that are of long historical vintage. In the American context, infrastructure has been created through models of public-private governance, and […]

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  • 6 Jul 2023
    Leonard V. Smith

    The Grey Zones of Empire

    A generic narrative of decolonization has informed how we think about the history of empire. According to this narrative, a colonized people gradually becomes conscious of its predicament. Through this consciousness, it empowers itself eventually to throw off the colonizer. The imperial domain thus “decolonizes.” The central argument of French Colonialism from the Ancien Régime […]

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  • 27 Jun 2023
    Alexandra Roginski

    Enigmatic science played out in the fault lines of settler-colonial power

    In recent years, the pandemic brought into relief the tensions that arise from the many and varied ways that people make sense of the natural world and its relationship to bodies. Masking. Vaccination. Social-distancing. Such public-health measures advocated by government agencies and the World Health Organization all met with flurries of alternative theories about the […]

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  • 20 Jun 2023
    Eleanor Dickey

    How did ancient Greek speakers use Latin?

    The ancient Greeks have a reputation for being proudly, purely monolingual: they considered their own language so perfect that they had no need to learn anyone else’s. But was that really true? A new dictionary of Latin words used by ancient Greek speakers suggests that it was not, by documenting over 2,500 words of Latin […]

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