National Geographic

Tabloid Biblical Archaeology

Quick! Tell me about the three top stories in the most recent copy of the Journal of Biblical Archaeology. Actually, from what I can tell, there is no Journal of Biblical Archaeology, though there is an Australian Journal of Biblical Archaeology. That tells you something about how much most of us pay attention to developments … Read more

Friday Free-for-All: March 4

Time for some Friday morning links: France’s ban on the niqab, or face veil, goes into effect next month: Face veils will be outlawed virtually anywhere outside women’s own homes, except when they are worshipping in a religious place or travelling as a passenger in a private car, although traffic police may stop them if … Read more

The Politics of Biblical Archaeology

Insofar as it touches on questions of ethnic origin and national identity, archaeology can be a contentious field. Nowhere is this more true than in present day Israel/Palestine, where every new discovery or theory must travel through a political filter that often does more to shape a scholar’s opinion than do the cold facts of … Read more

Discovering a lost language

There are more undiscovered languages than you’d expect — a lot more. Today’s Wall Street Journal reports that two linguists working for National Geographic have found a new one in the Himalayan foothills of India’s northeastern state, Arunachal Pradesh. More than 120 languages are spoken in the area, which is very isolated because of the mountainous … Read more

Those intelligent killer whales

Here’s something incredible: killer whales that have developed the ability to hunt seals and sea lions on the shoreline. National Geographic scientists spotted two orcas on the beaches of Argentina, riding waves onto the shore, grabbing seals, and then using their fins to “walk” back into deeper water. Apparently, the whales are teaching each other … Read more

Gluttons for Power

  At least since the lavish dinners of the decadent Roman Republic, rulers and those who aspired to rule have frequently made a point of conspicuous consumption. Now, this isn’t always despicable; we expect those who represent legitimate authority on earth to express the dignity of their office. Even in the vigorous early days of … Read more

Be Still Oh Everyone!

Whoever planted this news item might as well have planted a bomb. Last February, a woman at a local Pennsylvania mall was asked by security guards to cover up while she nursed her baby. In protest, over 150 “lactivists” gathered with their own babies to hold a “nurse-in” at the same mall. On Mother’s Day, … Read more

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