Books

Uncategorized

Beginning, as I often do, with etymology, I can tell you that the word clitoris is from the Ancient Greek word key, or alternately Ancient Greek words for "little hill," "to shut" latch, or hook, and possibly (and amusingly) a verb meaning, to "touch lightly or lasciviously."

On my podcast recently, I hosted four guests from the newly transformed, digitalized and updated feminist classic Our Bodies Ourselves, on its 50th Anniversary. That naturally got me thinking about health and the Supreme Court's decision on Roe v. Wade, so I cannot resist sharing with you a piece I saved from a month or so ago: a New York Times article by Jodi Kantor and Jo Becker in The Daily. It's about a former anti-abortion leader turned whistleblower who is now alleging another Supreme Court leak, in addition to the recently leaked draft opinion by Justice Samuel Alito, about his overturning of Roe. Keep in mind that I nurture a fragile, poignant hope that some brilliant, enterprising attorney out there will connect the dots about the Court and initiate what will become, in my fantasies, a massive, successsful, grassroots movement to impeach Justices Alito, Thomas,...

The word philanthropy is from the Ancient Greek phil "love of" and anthrōpos "humankind." In the second century CE, Plutarch used the Greek concept of philanthrôpía to describe superior human beings. Then, during the Middle Ages, philanthrôpía was superseded across Europe by Christianity and the Christian virtue of charity (Latin: caritas); selfless love--valued for salvation and escape from purgatory--for oneself. Which doesn't seem very selfless to me. Anyway, parochial and civic charities grew over time, established by bequests and operated by local church parishes or guilds. During the 18th century, however, a more activist Protestant tradition of direct charitable engagement took hold—for example, in 1739, appalled by the number of abandoned children living on the streets of London, Thomas Coram received a royal charter in England to establish the Foundling Hospital to look after the orphans, and that set the pattern for incorporating associational charities in general. Things became more...

I'm not going to attempt here, as I often do, an etymological or historical summary, not of antisemitism, nor a current news summary of it either – no more than I would for the vast subjects of any racism, or of sexism itself. We know the histories, and if we don't know the histories then we must ask WHY we don't.

There are an estimated 476 million Indigenous Peoples spread across 70 countries worldwide. I lack the space to map the torturous route of finding a day for the US government to honor them, or for The United Nations to recognize their rights in a declaration.