8.17.2017 Daily Links

  A Thought for the Day   

Helpless in confronting a marketplace, that for one reason or another—a clear example of which is definitely ideological and repressive—doesn’t even recognized his existence, barely validates her ardent passion and precise execution, a cultural producer’s psyche can easily collapse into an attitude of despair that, while understandable, represents one of the great crimes against the self, at least inasmuch as one’s view of oneself is as a meaning maker, a history-maker, a participant in the process of creating a culture that does not require self-immolation or voluntary slavery on the part of the vast majority of the human cousins who inhabit this Earth, a conclusion in the meantime that affirms, in the company of all others who are people of good will, the existential election to choose empowerment and hope over wretched despondency or hopeless dejection.

  Quote of the Day 
Descartes‘ method of finding tangents and normals… was not a happy inspiration. It was quickly superseded by that of Fermat as amplified by Newton. Fermat’s method amounts to obtaining a tangent as the limiting position of a secant, precisely as is done in the calculus today. …Fermat’s method of tangents is the basis of the claim that he anticipated Newton in the invention of the differential calculus.
Eric Temple BellThe Development of Mathematics (1940)

 This Day in History  

Joseph Mallord William Turner - Venice, the Bridge of Sighs
Joseph Mallord William Turner – Venice, the Bridge of Sighs

In Argentina, today celebrates the liberator San Martin; in a continuing Balkan theme of resistance to empire one thousand thirty-one years ago, Bulgarian fighters overwhelmed Byzantine armies at the Gates of Trajan; four centuries to the day thereafter, in 1386, the ruling classes of Albania entered an ongoing pact with Venice so as to resist Ottoman incursions; four hundred sixty-eight years ahead of today, a huge battle in Cornish England crushed an uprising against the nascent Church of England and the cultural aspects of a switch to religious vernacular from Latin; eleven years henceforth, just to the North in Scotland, in 1560, popular feeling and key leaders together overturn Catholic imprimatur in the land of kilts; just over four decades subsequent to that, in 1601, the baby boy first gave voice who would mature as the mathematical genius Pierre de Fermat; in a precursor of more recent carnage, a hundred sixteen years later, in 1717, Austria successfully completed its siege of Belgrade and stripped control of much of Serbia from the Ottomans;; MORE HERE

 ninety years after that moment in time, in 1807, a Robert Fulton steamship began the first regular boat transportation between Manhattan and Albany on New York’s Hudson River; fifty-five years closer to the current juncture, in 1862, Lakota raiding parties responded to American aggression and land grabs with attacks on White settlements on the Minnesota River, starting the Dakota War;precisely a quarter century after that, in 1887, the baby boy was born whose destiny was to be the leader Marcus Garvey; six years hence, in 1893, a baby girl came along who would wow audiences with her performances and screenplays as Mae West; one hundred nine years back, French filmmakers released the world’s first animated movie, Fantasmagorieseven years still nearer to now, in 1915, a lynch mob in suburban Atlanta’s Cobb County murdered Jewish businessman Leo Frank, while engineer Charles Kettering garnered a patent essential to an automotive future, an electric automatic starting mechanism; fifteen years on the dot beyond that point, in 1930, the British babe who would become iconic poet and controversial husband of Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, entered the world in standard fashion; seven hundred thirty-one days after that day, in 1932, a West Indian male child took his first breath en route to acclaim and renown as Nobel Laureate, V.S. Naipal; three years subsequently, in 1935, the not so well-known but nonetheless well-regarded sociologist and storyteller, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, drew her final breath; eight years still closer to contemporary time, in 1943, Anglo American and British leaders met in Quebec to plot out the course of World War Two, including the acceleration of the development of atomic weapons; two years hence, in 1945, Indonesian leaders that included Sukarno led the uprising against the Dutch empire that resulted in an independent Indonesia; two years further along time’s arc, in 1947, a thousand miles Northwest in the Subcontinent, British imperial leaders orchestrated the exact details of the division of its empire into India and East and West Pakistan with the establishment of the Radcliffe Line’s boundaries; half a dozen years even more proximate to the present day, in 1953, the first meeting of Narcotics Anonymous occurred in the Los Angeles area, and the baby girl first cried out who would rise as the Romanian German writer, Herta Müller, acclaimed poet and author and Nobel Laureate; six more years further along, in 1959, the baby boy entered our midst who would one day write as Jonathan Franzen; an exact decade passed before, in 1969, the Woodstock Music Festival folded its tents; four years later, in 1973, the socially prominent poet and critic and child of tragedy, Conrad Aiken, had his final stanza; another decade past that day, in 1983, the prolific tunesmith, Ira Gershwin, died far from his native New York, in Beverly Hills; a decade hence, in 1993, General of the Army and pedigreed ruling class member Colin Powell received the largest-ever advance payment for his projected autobiography; a pair of years onward from that moment in time’s transit, in 1995, the blacklisted writer Howard E. Koch died as he neared the century mark.

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