Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Heads-up for 29 September 2010

Witness (BBC)
Silent Spring
When Silent Spring, a book about the effect of pesticides, was published in 1962 it prompted a new way of looking at the world. It was written by Rachel Carson, and her adopted son Roger Christie has been talking to Witness.
(review, feed)

Rear Vision
The Middle East conflict and the two-state solution
American president Barack Obama is committed to the Middle East peace process and the two-state solution. That is, that between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River there should be two states: one Israeli and the other Palestinian. We take a look at the history of the two-state solution. First broadcast on 23 September 2009
(review, feed)

The China History Podcast
The Great Leap Forward
The Great Leap Forward ( 大跃进) from 1958-1960 caused death and suffering to dozens of millions of people. It sounded like a workable idea but it didn't turn out like Chairman Mao hoped. When looking back on the life of Mao Zedong, the Great Leap Forward is always viewed as a black mark against his legacy. I welcome you to listen to the podcast and learn all about what happens when central planning goes awry.
(review, feed)

New Books In History by Marshall Poe
Norman Naimark, “Stalin’s Genocides”
Absolutely no one doubts that Stalin murdered millions of people in the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s. His ruthless campaign of “dekulakization,” his pitiless deportation of “unreliable” ethnic groups, his senseless starvation of Ukrainian peasants, his cruel attempt to “cleanse” the Communist Party of supposed “enemies of the people”–all of these actions resulted in mass death. In total, Stalin is responsible for the murder of roughly 10 million Soviet citizens. Again, this is well established.
What is not well established is what to call Stalin’s crimes.
(review, feed)

Philosophy Bites
Daniel Everett on the Nature of Language
Since John Locke declared the child's mind a blank slate, philosophers have long debated the degree to which language-learning is innate. Are there are universal grammatical features that all languages share? Daniel Everett, who has spent many years among the Piraha, an Amazonian people who have a highly unusual language, believes that some of Noam Chomsky's claims about language acquisition are mistaken. Listen to him discussing the nature of language with Nigel Warburton in this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast. Philosophy Bites is made in association with The Institute of Philosophy
(review, feed)