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Algernon Charles Swinburne, 1837-1909
Celebrating Springtime
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Happy April Fool’s Day!
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Samuel Taylor Coleridge, 1772-1834
World Poetry Day - 21st March
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Elizabeth Bowen, 1899-1973
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
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Simone de Beauvoir, 1908-1986
International Women’s Day - 8th March
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How are you gearing up for Spring?
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Maya Angelou, 1928-2014
Commemorating Black History Month
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John F. Kennedy, 1917-1963
President’s Day - 17th February
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Happy Valentine’s Day!
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Jesse Jackson, 1941-

Celebrating Black History Month

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Have you ever wanted to know more about your favorite classic authors? Each month, we share various facts about the lives and works of our Author of the Month.
During January, we honored Anne Brontë as our Author of the Month to tie in with the bicentenary of Brontë’s birth. Anne was born on January 17th 1820 in Yorkshire and some of the most interesting things we learned about her this month were…
For the month of February, we are exploring the life and work of Victor Hugo. Be sure to follow the #ClassicsInContext hashtag on Twitter and Facebook to learn more!
Classics in Context Author of the MonthOxford World's Classics Anne Bronte Agnes GreyTenant of Wildfell Hall Bronte Sisters Emily BronteCharlotte Bronte
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1736 (Old Style), English-born American political activist and revolutionary Thomas Paine was born in Norfolk. He is best remembered for his pamphlet Common Sense, which vocalized rebellious demands for independence from Great Britain.
“These questions about the politics of knowledge will arise repeatedly in subsequent chapters. For the moment, let us consider just one other example – the philosopher and firebrand Thomas Paine. An unsuccessful corset-maker, sacked tax-collector, and occasional political writer, Paine left his native England to start a new life in America in 1774. On his arrival in Philadelphia, he found work as the editor of the Pennsylvania Magazine. A couple of years later, his polemical pamphlet Common Sense (1776) was a key factor in persuading the American colonists to go to war against the British government, and established Paine as the bestselling author of the age. An associate of Benjamin Rush, Thomas Jefferson, and others of the founding fathers of the United States of America, Paine’s democratic and anti-monarchical political philosophy shaped the Declaration of Independence. After politics, Paine’s other great passions were science and engineering. He had attended popular lectures on Newton and astronomy back in England, and he spent many years of his life working on a design for a single-span iron bridge, inspired by the delicacy and strength of one of the great works of nature – the spider’s web. His whole philosophy was a scientific one. He saw revolutions in governments paralleling the revolutions of celestial bodies in the heavens. Each was an inevitable, natural, and law-governed process. Later in his life, having had a hand in both the American and French revolutions, he turned his sights from monarchy to Christianity. The institutions of Christianity were as offensive to his enlightened and Newtonian sensibilities as were those of monarchical government. In his Age of Reason (1794), Paine complained of ‘the continual persecution carried on by the Church, for several hundred years, against the sciences and against the professors of science.’” — From ‘Science and Religion: A Very Short Introduction’ by Thomas Dixon
[Pg. 10-1 — From ‘Science and Religion: A Very Short Introduction’ by Thomas Dixon.]
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Religion Science Thomas Paine DebateSecularism Birthday On This Day On This DateOTD
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Wernher von Braun, 1912-1977
International Outer Space Day - 27th January
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OUP Oxford University Press Wernher von BraunOxford Reference Quote Quote of the WeekSpace Astronomy
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1561, English philosopher and statesman Francis Bacon was born in London. Often called the father of empiricism, Bacon is credited with developing the scientific method.
“The linkage of scientific discovery to practical application is perhaps most often associated with Sir Francis Bacon (1561–1626). Born into a well-placed family, educated as a lawyer, elected to Parliament, ennobled as Lord Verulam, and eventually named Lord Chancellor of England (and ousted on bribery charges), Bacon lived most of his life in the halls of power. Accordingly, the topic of power and the building of empire was rarely far from his thoughts. He asserted that natural philosophical knowledge should be used; it promised power for the good of mankind and the state. He characterized – or caricatured – the natural philosophy of his day as barren, its methods and goals misguided, its practitioners busy with words but neglecting works. Indeed, although Bacon expressed skepticism of natural magic’s metaphysical foundations, he praised magic because it ‘proposes to recall natural philosophy from a miscellany of speculations to a magnitude of works’. Natural philosophy should be operative not speculative – it should do things, make things, and give human beings power. He considered printing, the compass, and gunpowder – all technological achievements – to have been the most transformative forces in human history. As a result, Bacon called for nothing less than a ‘total reconstruction of sciences, arts, and all human knowledge’.
Methodology is crucial to Bacon’s desired reform. He advocated the compilation of ‘natural histories’, vast collections of observations of phenomena whether spontaneously occurring or the result of human experimentation, what he called forcing nature out of her usual course. After sufficient raw materials had been collected, natural philosophers could fit them together to formulate increasingly universal principles by a process of induction. The key was to avoid premature theorizing, navel-gazing speculations, and the building of grand explanatory systems. Once the more general principles of nature had been uncovered, they should then be used productively. Yet Bacon did not advocate a crass utilitarianism. Experiments were useful not only when they produced fruit (practical application) but also when they brought light to the mind. True knowledge of nature served both for ‘the glory of the Creator and the relief of man’s estate’. While Bacon is clear that one goal of his enterprise is to strengthen and expand Britain – although neither Elizabeth I nor James I responded to his petitions for state support of his ideas for reform – on a larger scale Bacon saw the goal of such operative knowledge as to regain the power and human dominion over nature bestowed by God in Genesis, but lost with Adam’s Fall.” — From ‘The Scientific Revolution: A Very Short Introduction’ by Lawrence M. Principe.
[Pg. 120-1 — From ‘The Scientific Revolution: A Very Short Introduction’ by Lawrence M. Principe.]
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Philosophy Science Revolution EmpiricismLondon Bacon Birthday On This DayOn This Date OTD
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Martin Luther King Jr., 1929-1968

Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day - 20th January

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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1919, Marxist theorist, anti-war activist, and economist Rosa Luxemburg died.
“Rosa Luxemburg (1871–1919) was a revolutionary Marxist in the German SPD. She was often deeply critical of the leadership of her own party because she believed it was becoming too dominated by short-term reforms and was losing sight of the ultimate goal of socialist revolution. However, she believed in mass action by the working class as the way of bringing about change and was critical of Lenin’s concept of a vanguard party. In 1903, she attacked it for ultra-centralism, which she equated with the ‘sterile spirit of the overseer:
Lenin’s concern is not so much to make the activity of the party more fruitful as to control the party – to narrow the movement rather than to develop it, to bind rather than unify it.
Once the Russian Revolution took place, she gave it cautious support and was a leading figure in the German Communist Party when it was established in December 1918. However, the next month she (and Karl Liebknecht, another prominent figure in the new party) were arrested by German cavalry officers, who were suppressing a revolutionary uprising. Both were murdered while in custody, so Luxemburg did not live to witness the subsequent development of the Soviet system and the uses that would be made of the Leninist party.” — From ‘Socialism: A Very Short Introduction’ by Michael Newman
[Pg. 40-1 — From ‘Socialism: A Very Short Introduction’ by Michael Newman]
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Politics History Marxism Socialism RosaLuxemburg Death Day On This Day On This DateOTD
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Mark Twain, 1835-1910
How are you sticking to your New Year’s resolution?
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Oxford University Press Oxford Reference QuoteQuote of the Week Mark Twain Winter 2020
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1905, German philosopher of science, C.G. Hempel was born in Oranienburg, Germany. He is famous for his contributions to the philosophy of science and explanation. He is known best for the “raven paradox,” which challenges our intuitions about what constitutes evidence for our beliefs.
“Hempel noted that scientific explanations are usually given in response to what he called ‘explanation-seeking why-questions’. These are questions such as ‘why is the earth not perfectly spherical?’ or ‘why do women live longer than men?’—they are demands for explanation. To give a scientific explanation is thus to provide a satisfactory answer to an explanation-seeking why-question. If we could determine the essential features that such an answer must have, we would know what scientific explanation is.
Hempel suggested that scientific explanations typically have the logical structure of an argument, i.e. a set of premises followed by a conclusion. The conclusion states that the phenomenon which needs explaining occurs, and the premises tell us why the conclusion is true. Thus suppose someone asks why sugar dissolves in water. This is an explanation-seeking why-question. To answer it, says Hempel, we must construct an argument whose conclusion is ‘sugar dissolves in water’ and whose premises tell us why this conclusion is true. The task of providing an account of scientific explanation then becomes the task of characterizing precisely the relation that must hold between a set of premises and a conclusion, in order for the former to count as an explanation of the latter. That was the problem Hempel set himself.” — From ‘Philosophy of Science: A Very Short Introduction (2nd edition)’ by Samir Okasha
[Pg. 37 — From ‘Philosophy of Science: A Very Short Introduction (2nd edition)’ by Samir Okasha.]
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Philosophy Science Explanation RavensQuestions Hempel Birthday On This DayOn This Date OTD
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Helen Keller, 1880-1968
World Braille Day - 4th January
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Oxford University Press Oxford Reference QuoteQuote of the Week World Braille Day Helen Keller
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Phylogenomic Resolution of the Cetacean Tree of Life Using Target Sequence Capture
Cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises) have undergone the most dramatic morphological transformation of all mammals, having originated from a clade of terrestrial even-toed ungulates (like cattle, hippopotamuses, pigs, and more) over fifty million years ago. As a result of such an interesting and diverse evolutionary history, cetaceans have long been important and insightful subjects of numerous studies.
Until recently, the higher-level relationships between the cetacean families have taken precedence in research, leaving the systematics and lower-level relationships both under-explored and unresolved. 
New research from Systematic Biologysought to rectify this gap in knowledge by combining data from >38,000 exons with existing sequences from 11 cetaceans and seven outgroup taxa, producing the first comprehensive comparative genomic dataset for cetaceans.
Enrich your knowledge further by exploring a more holistic insight of the genetic intricacies within cetacean families and discover new clarifications of the contentious relationships among particular species.
Systematic Biology Cetaceans Phylogenomics​Delphinidae Ziphiidae Dolphins WhalesEvolutionary Biology Biology Oxford University PressOxford Journals High-throughput SequencingPhylogenetic Relationships Target Sequence CaptureMacroevolution
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Have you ever wanted to know more about your favorite classic authors? Each month, we share various facts about the lives and works of our Author of the Month.
During December, we honored Louisa May Alcott as our Author of the Month to tie in with the latest adaptation of #LittleWomen, released last month in theatres. Alcott was born on November 29th 1832 in Pennsylvania and some of the most interesting things we learned about her this month were…
For the month of January, we are exploring the life and work of Anne Brontë. Be sure to follow the #ClassicsInContext hashtag on Twitter and Facebook to learn more!
ClassicsInContext Author of the MonthOxford World's Classics Little WomenLittle Women Movie Louisa May AlcottHenry David Thoreau Film Adaptation Classic NovelLiterature
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1924, American art critic and philosopher Arthur Danto was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Though known primarily as an art critic, Danto also made considerable contributions to the philosophy of history and the philosophy of action.
“Arthur Danto writes for the left-liberal magazine The Nation and is a very well-known philosopher and theorist of contemporary art, particularly of what he sees as the break in art production set in train by Andy Warhol. If Warhol’s Brillo Pad boxes cannot be visually distinguished from actual Brillo Pad boxes, he argues, it follows that art cannot be defined in terms of its visual distinctiveness, and must instead be characterized philosophically. […]
Danto’s After the End of Art claims that the character of art has changed radically since the 1970s and the last gasp of the avant-garde, and is now properly post-historical. Modernist and avant-garde views were tied to an idea of historical progress – towards formal abstraction, perhaps, or the merging of art and life. For Danto, in contrast, ‘life really begins when the story comes to an end’, and those who now expect art to progress have missed the point, which is that the final synthesis has been reached. While Danto does not mention him, this stance is close to that of Francis Fukuyama’s political views in his widely publicized book The End of History and the Last Man, and is based on the same Hegelian contention that, while of course events continue to occur, History has come to a close; that we are settled for ever with a version of the system which now sustains us. Similarly, for Danto, once art had passed through the black night of the 1970s (which he compares, with its dreadful politically engaged work, to the Dark Ages), it emerged onto the sunny Elysian Fields of universal permissiveness, never to leave. And in those fields, any mixing of styles or patching together of narratives is as good in principle as any other.” — From ‘Contemporary Art: A Very Short Introduction’ by Julian Stallabrass
[Pg. 111 — From ‘Contemporary Art: A Very Short Introduction’ by Julian Stallabrass.]
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Contemporary Art Critique Philosophy ArthurDanto Birthday On This Day On This Date OTD
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Lord Alfred Tennyson, 1809-1892
Happy New Year from Oxford University Press!
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OUP Oxford Reference Tennyson PoetryNew Year Quote Quote of the WeekHappy New Year
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1643, English mathematician, physicist, astronomer, theologian, and philosopher Sir Isaac Newton was born.
“According to the calendar then in use in England, Newton was born on Christmas Day 1642 (4 January 1643 in most of Continental Europe). The first decade of his life witnessed the horror of the civil wars between parliamentary and royalist forces in the 1640s, culminating in the beheading of Charles I in January 1649. His uncle and stepfather were rectors of local parishes, and they seem to have existed without much harassment from the church authorities convened by Parliament to check for religious ‘abuses’. In his second decade he lived under the radical Protestant Commonwealth, which was replaced in 1660 when Charles II was restored to the throne. Newton was born into a relatively prosperous family and was brought up in a devout atmosphere. His father, also Isaac, was a yeoman farmer who in December 1639 inherited both land and a handsome manor in the Lincolnshire parish of Woolsthorpe. His mother, Hannah Ayscough, came from the lower gentry and (as was common for the period) seems to have been educated at only a rudimentary level. Nevertheless, her brother William had graduated from Trinity College Cambridge in the 1630s and would be influential in directing Newton to the same institution.
Newton’s father, apparently unable to sign his name, died in early October 1642, almost three months before the birth of his son. Newton told Conduitt that he had been a tiny and sick baby, thought to be unlikely to survive; two women sent to get help from a local gentlewoman stopped to sit down on the way there, as they were certain the baby would be dead on their return. Surviving against the odds, Newton was brought up by his mother until the age of 3, when she was approached with an offer of marriage by Barnabas Smith, an ageing vicar of a local parish. Smith was wealthy, and they married in January 1646 after he had promised to leave some land to her first born. Spending most of her time with her new spouse, she produced three more children before his death in 1653 (one of whom would be the mother of Catherine Conduitt). Although John Conduitt waxed lyrical about Hannah’s general virtues, and was careful to point out that she was ‘an indulgent parent’ to all the children, he emphasized that young Isaac was her favourite. Whatever the truth of this, Newton’s own evidence indicates that, as a teenager, he had an extremely difficult relationship with his mother, and historians have always found it difficult to make Conduitt’s account tally with the fact that for seven years Newton was effectively left in Woolsthorpe to be brought up by his maternal grandmother.” — From ‘Newton: A Very Short Introduction’ by Robert Iliffe
[Pg. 8-9 — From ‘Newton: A Very Short Introduction’ by Robert Iliffe.]
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Science Isaac Newton Physics MathNewtonian Birthday On This Day On This DateOTD
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Is action on climate change the only sure way to preserve the world’s coral reefs?
The majority of coral reefs around the world are not only threatened by global warming. Agriculture effluents such as pesticides, overfishing, untreated sewage, and siltation due to deforestation all contribute to the serious degradation of coral reefs such as the Great Barrier Reef of Australia.
The latest Food for Thought article from ICES Journal of Marine Science explores building up resilience and adaption of social-ecological systems of coral reefs, by drastically reducing local stressors.
Science Science Saturday Marine ScienceClimate Change Coral Reef OverfishingGreat Barrier Reef Food for ThoughtICES Journal of Marine Science Oxford Journals
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1963, American actor and film producer Brad Pitt was born in Shawnee, Oklahoma.
“And, of course, artistic and literary reinterpretations of the Trojan War and the fate of its better-known participants, including Odysseus, have been produced and reproduced over the centuries, up to and including the present. Thus, we have not only the later Greek playwrights and the Roman poets but also Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde, Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida, Camille Saint-Saëns’s opera Hélène (1904), James Joyce's Ulysses, and the silver screen’s various takes on the epic, with numerous films appearing since the early twentieth century featuring the Trojan War, Helen, Achilles, Odysseus, and/or the Trojan Horse.
Some of these later works contain parts that may be considered inaccurate or unfaithful to Homer in details or plot—the 2004 Hollywood blockbuster movie, for instance, has no gods or goddesses in sight; Brad Pitt anachronistically placing coins on the closed eyes of dead Patroclus five hundred years before such currency is invented in Lydia ca. 700 BCE; and both Agamemnon and Menelaus killed at Troy while Paris/Alexander is not, thereby changing the familiar Homeric/Epic Cycle version—but this is a long-standing tradition going back to the Greek playwrights who followed Homer and who also felt free to change some of the details. More importantly, each has reinterpreted the story in its own way, with changes and nuances frequently reflecting the angst and desires of that particular age, such as medieval Christianity for Chaucer, the Elizabethan worldview for Shakespeare, and the Iraq war for Troy director Wolfgang Peterson.” — From ‘The Trojan War: A Very Short Introduction’ by Eric H. Cline
[Pg. 108-9 — From ‘The Trojan War: A Very Short Introduction’ by Eric H. Cline.]
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Film Troy Brad Pitt Homer ClassicsBirthday On This Day On This Date OTD
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1964, Time magazine published a review of Susan Sontag’s “Notes on Camp,” calling her “one of Manhattan’s brightest intellectuals.”
“Indeed, decadence has enjoyed a considerable afterlife in that over-the-top culture known as camp, which the critic Susan Sontag helpfully clarified as an ability to discriminate between inferior art and deliberately inferior art—‘the good taste of bad taste.’
That definition of camp should not be taken as a definition of decadence, although the camp sensibility does demonstrate the conflicted attitude toward modernity that we have identified with decadence. Our initial attempt to define decadence was etymological and historical, and that effort remains meaningful. But decadence is more than decline, decay, and degeneration, whether artistic, historical, or social. We need to keep those meanings in mind, certainly, while also keeping in mind a number of nuances and implications. Think of decadence as an ornate, highly artificial object that resembles nothing in nature, represented on a slide projected through an old-fashioned magic lantern, seen through a series of colored filters, each color representing a different aspect of decadence. The object, in other words, takes on a different coloration depending on the filter. One filter darkens the object and makes decadence look like pessimism; another gives it a luscious hue that makes it look like hedonism; a mottled, greenish filter turns the object rotten, suggesting degeneration; still another imparts a lavender glow and connotes, somehow, “the love that dare not speak its name” (the phrase Lord Alfred Douglas, Oscar Wilde’s lover, used to describe homosexuality). But whatever coloration decadence takes, it is typically the expression—the projection—of urban experience.” — From ‘Decadence: A Very Short Introduction’ by David Weir
[Pg. 8 — From ‘Decadence: A Very Short Introduction’ by David Weir.]
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Camp Susan Sontag Met Gala DecadenceCulture Time Magazine On This DayOn This Date OTD
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‘All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights,’ according to Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which we celebrate today on Human Rights Day. Many would argue, however, that this is still not the case for refugees over 70 years since the Declaration, who number at least 25 million.
In a new Virtual Issue, Journal of Refugee Studies Editor Khalid Koser discusses why this is the case, with a selection of recent papers exploring the relationship between refugees and human rights. Read his introduction, or explore his selected articles for free online throughout December 2019.
Human Rights Human Rights Day Refugee Studies
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Aging in America poses existential questions that all men who live to their seventies and eighties must eventually face. Am I still a man? Do I still matter? What is the meaning of my life? Am I loved? 
psychsaturday aging masculinity mental healthmeaning of life
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National Influenza Vaccination Week is a national observance that highlights the importance of flu vaccination for everyone 6 months and older. Below is a selection of articles to help raise awareness of the importance of vaccination to prevent influenza illness and its complications.

Clinical Infectious Diseases
Effects of Influenza Vaccination in the United States During the 2017–2018 Influenza Season

The Journal of Infectious Diseases
Spread of antigenically drifted influenza A(H3N2) viruses and vaccine effectiveness in the United States during the 2018-2019 season

Open Forum Infectious Diseases
Universal Influenza Vaccination Among Healthcare Personnel: Yes We Should

Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society
Effect of Previous-Season Influenza Vaccination on Serologic Response in Children During 3 Seasons, 2013–2014 Through 2015–2016

NationalInfluenzaVaccinationWeek flu vaccinevaccines idsa
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1954, the first Burger King was opened in Miami, Florida.
“In low-status, low-pay service work, there may be little to smile about, but not to smile can be unforgivable. Some employers install ‘smile police’ to pose as customers, while others rely on spy cameras, the monitoring of phone calls, or customer satisfaction questionnaires. Still others go for a blunt, confrontational, approach: ‘I’ll go up in their faces and I go, “What is wrong?” ’ says a Brooklyn Burger King manager. ‘They look at me like they don’t know what I am doing. “What is wrong with your face?” I am smiling. You don’t know what it is like.’ […]
Workers of this sort may seek relief in a backstage zone, such as the galley area of an aircraft, the restaurant lobby, or staff rest-room. They are places where different emotion rules apply, a temporary amnesty from their usual emotional labours. There, the ‘obnoxious’ passenger, client, or customer can safely be derided, in the presence of a receptive audience of peers.
Some companies are keen to attract employees who are prepared to ‘really take on board’ and internalize the company’s message and training; to ‘really feel’ for the customer. The service worker is encouraged to fuse their personality with their work role; to synchronize their feelings with the required corporate line. Those susceptible to such injunctions are well-inducted emotional labourers and less fazed by pressures or inconsistencies experienced by their surface-acting counterparts. But outside of work they can find it difficult to extract themselves from the roles in which they have become so engrossed.” — From ‘Work: A Very Short Introduction’ by Stephen Fineman
[Pg. 76-7 — From ‘Work: A Very Short Introduction’ by Stephen Fineman.]
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Work Emotional Labor Politics CapitalismBurger King On This Day On This Date OTD
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Have you ever wanted to know more about your favorite classic authors? Each month, we share various facts about the lives and works of our Author of the Month.
During November, we honored George Eliot as our Author of the Month. She was born on November 22nd 1819 in Nuneaton and 2019 marks the bicentenary of Eliot’s birth. Some of the most interesting things we learned about her this month were…
For the month of December, we are exploring the life and work of Louisa May Alcott. Be sure to follow the #ClassicsInContext hashtag on Twitter and Facebook to learn more!
Classics in Context Author of the MonthOxford World's Classics George EliotMary Ann Evans Bicentenary George Henry LewesMiddlemarch Adam Bede Charles Dickens
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Love and harmony combine,
And around our souls intwine,
While thy branches mix with mine,
And our roots together join.
‘Song’ by William Blake, in William Blake’s Writings, Vol. 2: Writings
in Conventional Typography and in Manuscript
OSEO QOTD Quote of the Day OTDOn This Day William Blake Blake Author BirthdayPoets Poetry Song Harmony Beauty LoveReflection Nature Literature The RomanticsRomantic Poetry Romanticism
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1920, Austrian philosopher Alexius Meinong died. Meinong was known for his unique ontology, which claimed that everything that the universe contains everything that can be thought (even contradictions!) even if those things don’t exist, but merely “subsist.”
“Consider the proposition ‘the present king of France is wise’. This is perfectly meaningful, and because it is so it seems natural to ask whether it is true or false. And to this there seems an equally natural answer. There is no king of France at present; the subject term fails to refer to anything. Therefore, it seems that the proposition should be considered false. But there is a problem here, concerning how to demonstrate why it is false. This is because if in normal circumstances we say of something (call it ‘x’) that x is wise, the proposition ‘x is wise’ will be true if x is wise, and false if x is not wise. But what if there is no x? How can we say of something that does not exist that it either is or is not wise?
Initially Russell accepted a solution to this puzzle which had been proposed by the nineteenth‐century philosopher Alexius Meinong. This solution was to say that every expression with a referring or denoting function in a sentence does denote something, either an actually existing item, as with the table in ‘the table is brown’, or a ‘subsisting’ item, where by ‘subsistence’ is meant non‐actual existence – a kind of real but half or ‘courtesy’ existence. On this view, the universe contains everything that can be thought or talked about, including the present king of France; but only some of what the universe contains is actually existent. Accordingly the descriptive phrase ‘the present king of France’ does indeed denote, and what it denotes is a subsistent – that is a real but non‐actual – king of France.” — From ‘Wittgenstein: A Very Short Introduction’ by A.C. Grayling
[Pg. 23 — From ‘Wittgenstein: A Very Short Introduction’ by A.C. Grayling.]
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Philosophy Metaphysics Ontology WittgensteinExistence Math Death Day On This DayOn This Date OTD
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I wonder at the toil you must have endured in getting up your work,—wonder and envy. But I should never envy your success, or the great appreciation of what you have done that will certainly come,—probably today, but if not, then tomorrow.
Letter from Anthony Trollope to George Eliot, 28th June 1862 from The Letters of Anthony Trollope, letter 176.
OSEO QOTD Quote of the Day OTDOn This Day Letters George EliotAnthony Trollope Romola 1862Victorian Literature Literature Author BirthdaySuccess
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A Very Short Fact: On this day in 1959, the United Nations adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, an expansion of the document first adopted by the League of Nations in 1924, in an attempt to protect and promote child rights all over the world.
“In addition to direct aid to children and their families, the United Nations has passed resolutions and initiated treaties establishing and attempting to enforce children’s rights. Going far beyond the 1924 and 1959 declarations, the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child offered a wide-ranging affirmation that the best interests of the child should guide all policies and decisions regarding childhood. The convention’s forty articles reflect all of the concerns, values, and issues that had swirled around the idea of childhood throughout the previous century, including health, education, freedom of speech and religion, and the right to a name and nationality. The UN’s Committee on the Rights of the Child oversees the enforcement of its provisions. Although the United States was involved in the drafting of the convention, it remained the only nation not to have ratified it as of 2017. Although the convention’s many qualifications made it sound like an agreement among lawyers recognizing the complications of trying to issue dictums applicable to dozens of political and legal systems, it had far more teeth than other efforts to provide protection for all the world’s children.
In addition to primary care programs related to nutrition and health, the UN has worked to eliminate child marriage, provide standards for children’s rights within families and the treatment of refugees, eliminate child prostitution and child pornography, and discourage the exploitation of children in armed conflicts. Despite these efforts, and the decided improvements they brought to millions of children’s lives, economic, military, and environmental conditions keep many children in distress. In 2000 an estimated 100 million school-age children were out of school, 50 million were working in harsh conditions, 30 million were involved in sex trades, 150 million were malnourished, and millions more had been orphaned by or suffered from AIDS.” — From ‘The History of Childhood: A Very Short Introduction’ by James Marten
[Pg. 105-6 — From ‘The History of Childhood: A Very Short Introduction’ by James Marten.]
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History Human Rights Children United NationsPeace On This Day On This Date
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The winner of the 2018 Oxford Art Journal Essay Prize for Early Career Researchers is Dr. Alex Burchmore!
In a new interview with the journal, Dr. Burchmore discusses his early career journey so far, his prize winning paper, and tips for submitting to the 2019 Essay Prize (closing on 1st December 2019). Find out more about his research and details of how to submit your own paper here.
Art Art Journal Oxford OUP
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Polychromy in Ancient Greek and Roman Sculpture
“The term “polychromy” has been in use since the early 19th century to denote the presence of any element of colour in Greek and Roman sculpture. The evidence for such polychromy is literary, epigraphical, archaeological, and archeometric; research on the subject therefore requires collaboration between the humanities, conservation science, and natural science. Such research should go hand in hand with the investigation of the polychromy of Greek and Roman architecture, since it is symbiotically related to sculpture, technically as well as visually.”
Discover the complicated history of polychromy and ancient Greek and Roman sculpture, detailed within this video.
Polychromy Sculpture OCD HistoryOxford University Press Ancient GreeceAncient Rome Greco-Roman Architecture
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“Among the throngs of homeless people in the streets and shelters across America, the severely mentally ill are arguably the most vulnerable. One in every three homeless people suffers from a mental disorder that is both severe and disabling. People in this group are more likely to remain homeless on the streets and in shelters for longer periods and suffer from multiple health problems that incur high social and economic costs to society. While it is widely acknowledged that the decline of the mental asylum led to the emergence of homelessness in this subgroup, there has been significant progress in finding solutions that warrants greater recognition at the public policy level.”
Learn more about homelessness and severe mental illness in the era of community treatment.
Photo by Luis Vaz on Unsplash
Psych SaturdayNational Hunger and Homeless Awareness WeekHomelessness Mental Illness Mental HealthSocial Work Social Services Community TreatmentHomeless
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Inclusion’ in the classroom involves all students’ needs, however diverse, being understood and met. These diverse needs should be addressed and responded to through increasing participation in learning, cultures and communities, and reducing exclusion within and from education. In English Language Teaching there has been a focus on the importance of promoting differentiation within educational policies and school organizational structures. However, in the classroom, although teachers may already be trying to fulfill all student needs, they still face challenges in being able to achieve this entirely. 
The article ‘Inclusion’ by Sandra Stadler-Heer is free to read online.
inclusion ELT Journal English LanguageKey Concept article Oxford Journals ELTSandra Stadler-Heer education language classroomEnglish Language Teaching
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