Brain Pickings

Reads tagged with “politics”

The Antidote to the Irreversibility of Life: Hannah Arendt on What Forgiveness Really Means
The Antidote to the Irreversibility of Life: Hannah Arendt on What Forgiveness Really Means

“Forgiving… is the only reaction which does not merely re-act but acts anew and unexpectedly, unconditioned by the act which provoked it and therefore freeing from its consequences both the one who forgives and the one who is forgiven.”

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The Woman Who Saved the Hawks: Redeeming an Overlooked Pioneer of Conservation
The Woman Who Saved the Hawks: Redeeming an Overlooked Pioneer of Conservation

The story of the countercultural courage and persistence that shaped the modern ecological conscience.

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Confucius on Good Government, the 6 Steps to a Harmonious Society, and Self-Discipline as the Key to Democracy
Confucius on Good Government, the 6 Steps to a Harmonious Society, and Self-Discipline as the Key to Democracy

“Things have roots and branches… If the root be in confusion, nothing will be well governed.”

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Dignity, Daring, and Disability: The Pioneering Queer Composer and Defiant Genius Ethel Smyth on Making Music While Going Deaf
Dignity, Daring, and Disability: The Pioneering Queer Composer and Defiant Genius Ethel Smyth on Making Music While Going Deaf

…with a side of Virginia Woolf’s elated infatuation.

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Undoing as Remaking: How Abraham Lincoln Drew Poetry and Power from His Suicidal Depression
Undoing as Remaking: How Abraham Lincoln Drew Poetry and Power from His Suicidal Depression

Life-affirming inspiration from a man who knew intimately “that intensity of thought, which will some times wear the sweetest idea thread-bare and turn it to the bitterness of death.”

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Sarah Mapps Douglass’s Flowers: The First Surviving Art Signed by an African-American Woman
Sarah Mapps Douglass’s Flowers: The First Surviving Art Signed by an African-American Woman

A rose is a rose is a revolution.

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Gardening as Resistance: Notes on Building Paradise
Gardening as Resistance: Notes on Building Paradise

“Can you plant a garden to stop a war? It depends how you think about time. It depends what you think a seed does, if it’s tossed into fertile soil.”

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Einstein on the Political Power of Art
Einstein on the Political Power of Art

“Nothing can equal the psychological effect of real art — neither factual descriptions nor intellectual discussion.”

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Alfred Russel Wallace’s Prophetic Prescription for Course-Correcting Away from Ecological Catastrophe and Toward Widespread Human Happiness
Alfred Russel Wallace’s Prophetic Prescription for Course-Correcting Away from Ecological Catastrophe and Toward Widespread Human Happiness

“The final and absolute test of good government is the well-being and contentment of the people — not the extent of empire or the abundance of the revenue and the trade.”

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American Utopia: Maira Kalman’s Spare Visual Poems Drawn from David Byrne’s Masterpiece of Anticynical Humanism
American Utopia: Maira Kalman’s Spare Visual Poems Drawn from David Byrne’s Masterpiece of Anticynical Humanism

A painted dance in praise of the best we can do.

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