On Friday, San Diego-based dub rockers Slightly Stoopid offered up a special “Acoustic Roots Set” at Redondo Beach, CA’s inaugural BeachLife Festival.BeachLife Festival Combines Best Of California Coastal Culture To Create Promising Music PlatformToward’s the end of Slightly Stoopid’s set, the band invited up guitarist Bob Weir to lend an extra hand on a cover of the Grateful Dead‘s “Franklin’s Tower” and Tom Petty‘s “You Don’t Know How It Feels”. The unexpected collaboration doesn’t come as much of a surprise, as Bob Weir and Slightly Stoopid have collaborated in the past. In April 2016, Weir hosted a simulcast event at his TRI Studios in San Rafael, CA, with music performed by Slightly Stoopid. Among the many highlights from the live webcast was a reggae-influenced cover of Prince‘s “Purple Rain,” with Weir joining the band on guitar, as well as saxophonist Karl Denson joining the mix for a funky rendition of “Franklin’s Tower”.BeachLife also saw performances by Weir’s Wolf Bros, Willie Nelson and Family, As The Crow Flies, Blues Traveler, Keller Williams’ Grateful Gospel, Jason Mraz, Steel Pulse, and many more.Watch video of Bob Weir joining Slightly Stoopid at BeachLife Festival below:Slightly Stoopid w/ Bob Weir – “Franklin’s Tower” / “You Don’t Know How It Feels”[Video: Freakflagflyer]Last week, Slightly Stoopid announced their return to Rivera Maya, MX’s Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya for their sixth annual Closer To The Sun destination event, set for December 5th-9th, 2019.Closer To The Sun’s 2019 lineup is highlighted by three nights of music from Slightly Stoopid, in addition to scheduled performances from Dirty Heads, Stick Figure, SOJA, Stephen Marley, Toots & The Maytals, Tribal Seeds, Don Carlos with The Soul Syndicate Band, Fortunate Youth, Chali 2na, and Cut Chemist.For more information and a detailed list of ticketing package options, head to Close To The Sun’s website.
In 2005, a Danish newspaper published a dozen editorial cartoons that would ignite an international controversy involving free speech and discrimination.Many of the images depicted the Islamic prophet Muhammad. In the most memorable and inflammatory of the drawings, the religious messenger was seen with a bomb tucked in his black turban. The cartoons appeared with an editorial about the importance of tolerance by the Muslim community and the paper’s growing concern over self-censorship. The images ran under the headline “The face of Muhammad.”Muhammad’s image has appeared in print for centuries, but many Muslims believe that depicting the prophet is blasphemous. Ensuing anger over the caricatures resulted in riots in several countries, and more than 200 people died.It was largely political posturing that sparked the furor over the depictions of the Islamic prophet rather than universal indignation, said Jytte Klausen, a Brandeis professor of politics who recently wrote “The Cartoons that Shook the World.”Klausen, who is also a research associate at Harvard’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies, addressed a crowd Tuesday (Dec. 1) at the Barker Center about the upheaval, which she researched in detail for her new book, interviewing almost all of the key players. The center’s Islam in the West program sponsored the discussion.“It very quickly became clear to me that I was in a unique position to write about this topic,” said Klausen, in part because of her Danish roots and familiarity with the newspaper that was always in her home during her childhood. “The sentiments that used to inform the paper were well-known to me,” she said, adding that in recent years the newspaper had adopted a much more libertarian leaning, in keeping with a trend in Europe toward a more populist form of conservatism, one focused on immigration as a key issue, with Islam and Muslims often viewed as a challenge to national identities.Klausen had strong contacts in the Muslim community, having recently finished a book on politics and religion in western Europe, based on interviews with Muslim leaders there.The Muslim outrage, argued the author, had two main sources, including the Egyptian government’s decision to make a “diplomatic issue” of the cartoons and complain to both the Danish government and the United Nations. With Egyptian elections pending, she said, officials in Cairo used the cartoons to “push back against the American agenda for democratization as a forward security strategy in the Middle East.”For Egypt, said Klausen, the controversy represented an opportunity “to put on the record that the West abuses human rights as well.”The other source of unrest, she said, was a group of imams and a coalition of religious activists in Denmark who were increasingly frustrated with what they felt was an unacceptable level of Muslim stereotyping.“The cartoons were the last drop in a glass that was already pretty filled with bitterness,” she said.But the violence and deaths occurred in faraway countries such as Nigeria, where preexisting tensions or “pre-existing theaters of war” were already in place, said Klausen, adding that the cartoons were not the real culprit.The legacy of the cartoon controversy was a “sad and mixed one,” said Klausen. “Everybody was looking at the same 12 drawings … but people had very different interpretations of what they saw.”Heightened censorship, both within the Arab world and the West, was one of the lasting repercussions from the crisis, she said, with her own work a partial casualty. After consulting with some authorities on Islam, officials at Yale University Press chose not to reprint the cartoons and removed all illustrations of Muhammad from her book.In a final twist of irony, a technical oversight stranded the author without a projector to show the crowd her slides, which included the offending cartoons. She was left simply to describe the images to the audience.Ultimately, Klausen said, her desire to instruct and educate outweighed her frustration and anger with Yale’s decision to remove the images, and she chose to publish the book anyway. Still, her anger over the censorship was evident in her voice.“My argument is that in order to understand why Muslims were upset by these cartoons, we need to look at them and discuss them and understand. That cannot be done now,” she said. “I didn’t think it’s the sort of thing that would happen in the United States.”
Harvard Kennedy School’s Student Government launched its first Shadowing Initiative program during the January term of the 2011-12 academic year through the Office of Career Advancement and the Alumni Relations Office. The program paired a student with an alumnus, with the alumnus hosting the student at his or her workplace for a half or full day. About 50 students participated in the program in its inaugural year. Student organizers hope to make this an annual event, matching pairings across the world.
Even with the changeable New England temperatures going up and down like a seesaw, few can forget the recent climb to a smoldering 102 degrees Fahrenheit. Frozen treats were one form of relief from the omnipresent heat, and the Harvard community sought them out wherever they could be found.In the summer, Annenberg Hall is the only place on campus where students can indulge in soft-serve frozen yogurt from 5:15 to 7:15 p.m. (During the academic year, all the dining halls serve it up.)“Students really love it,” says Martin Breslin, director for Culinary Operations at Harvard University Dining Services (HUDS), noting that vanilla is the most popular flavor, although the selection can range from graham cracker pie to cookies and cream to red velvet cake. Frozen yogurt makes way for the real thing on Sundays, when an ice cream sundae bar serves up Richardson’s ice cream with a full complement of toppings. And for those with delicate constitutions, frozen lactose-, dairy-, or soy-free alternatives are available upon request.But since none of the campus retail locations sell ice cream, many Harvard folk venture into the Square to satisfy their cravings. J.P. Licks, Pinkberry, BerryLine, and Yogurtland are all just steps away, as are Ben & Jerry’s and Lizzy’s. And while a lot of ice cream and frozen yogurt is consumed on the hot, sunny days of summer, according to Breslin, consumption on campus is high year-round, with an increase during exam time.Bob Florio has worked at J.P. Licks for six years, and said it’s busiest in May, at the end of July, and August. Oreo cake batter is the store’s most popular flavor, and fudge the most popular topping. “We have the best fudge topping,” Florio said. He added that it’s busy all year, and people still order ice cream when it’s 10 degrees below zero outside.As July — National Ice Cream Month — winds down, the National Weather Service shows Cambridge’s temperatures going back up, so chances are you’ll find someone from the Harvard community dipping into a frozen delight. For Harvard University Information Technology’s Jaime Bermudez it will be frozen yogurt, because it’s “healthier than ice cream,” he said as he topped off a cup with Cap’n Crunch at Yogurtland.Taylor Reiter ’15, who visits Yogurtland (or BerryLine, and sometimes Pinkberry) two to three times a week, said she loves a plain flavor with chocolate chips, or cookies and cream.Ali Almossawi, a former research associate at Harvard Business School who was back in town for a conference, had already been to J.P. Licks twice during his stay. “I miss it,” he said over a cup of chocolate brownie ice cream, confessing that he’d probably be back a few more times before he returns to San Francisco on Monday.
In the spirit of Veterans Day, Harvard Undergraduates Honoring Veterans (HUHV) will be hosting its first-ever charity benefit, Standing Tall for Veterans, on Oct. 26 at 4 p.m. in Lecture Hall B of Harvard’s Science Center, 1 Oxford St. At the core of the event, HUHV will honor prominent stand-up comic and television personality Kathy Griffin with the inaugural Distinguished Service Partner Award.Pursuant with the objective of the event, HUHV will donate all ticket proceeds to the Home Base Program, the arm of the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital, that provides clinical support for veterans with PTSD. At the conclusion of the event, the Red Sox Foundation will open up a silent auction of Red Sox memorabilia to the general public (no ticket required) in the arcade of the Science Center, the proceeds of which will also be donated to the Home Base Program.Tickets for the charity event go on sale Oct. 8 at the Harvard Box Office, Holyoke Center, 1350 Massachusetts Ave. A limited number of seats will be available to former and current military personnel (veterans and ROTC members) free of charge with valid identification. Harvard student tickets are $10 and general admission tickets are $15.HUHV is a student group of Harvard College dedicated to easing the transition of local veterans into civilian life, while making their stories and faces more visible among the student body.
Read Full Story Visitors to the Materials Collection at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design’s Frances Loeb Library will never be admonished to look without touching. In this tactile paradise, fingers—and imagination—are encouraged to roam free.Tucked in a long, narrow room off the stacks, the collection consists of 600-plus physical material samples, often with multiple pieces per product. Bins, boxes, and bags fill shelves and drawers with objects of every texture, color, size, and shape. (View the full slideshow on the Library Portal.)Created and cultivated to support research, teaching, and learning, the collection is available to help students and faculty re-envision possibilities in the constructed environment.“You have these preconceived ideas of what concrete is,” said Johanna Kasubowski, design resources librarian. “We have samples of concrete as you’ve never thought of it—foamed concrete, flexible concrete. It really shatters the way you think about a building material.”
Read Full Story This year, June 29 marks the beginning of Ramadan, a 30-day period during which time devout Muslims around the world pray, reflect, and fast from sunrise to sunset. It is a time when religious tradition trumps business considerations. Shopkeepers reduce their hours and workers spend less time on the job and more time in the mosque. This year, in particular, fasting will be particularly intense for Muslims across the Northern Hemisphere, as the month coincides with the long days of summer. A Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) Faculty Research Working Paper co-authored by two HKS faculty members confirms that more intense Ramadan fasting does, in fact, prove to be a drag on the economy, although not on the spirits of its adherents.Examining data on Ramadan in predominantly Muslim countries dating back to 1950, Associate Professor Filipe Campante and Assistant Professor David Yanagizawa-Drott find that increasing the amounts of time fasting as a result of longer daylight hours, results in statistically significant reductions in economic growth, not just in the month itself but on a year-on-year basis.
The American Civil War left behind 750,000 dead. It also left at least one abiding literary mystery: Why did Walt Whitman turn his back on “Drum-Taps”? His book saw print only in 1865. Then he chopped it up and folded it into “Leaves of Grass,” the ever-expanding, mutable masterwork he had begun a decade earlier.Yet “Drum-Taps,” some observers say, invented the modern war poem, with its photographic, unforgiving details and its anti-romantic impulses. It rendered a murderous war — Whitman called it “the red business” — in journalistic detail, during an age when poetry and prose vied equally for the public’s attention.“Drum-Taps” also muted the boisterous and expansive voice — all ego — that the poet had created for himself as a representative American man. In that book of poems, Whitman evolved from a seeming celebrant of war to a regretful, elegiac observer of its toll.The fate of “Drum-Taps” at the hands of its own creator is part of Whitman lore. The poet originally conceived of it as “a book separate,” he wrote, “not linked to the others.” But then he changed his mind and “linked” it to his successive editions of “Leaves of Grass,” starting in 1867. He turned the body of the previous book into a “torso,” wrote author and Fordham University English Professor Lawrence Kramer. A recent visitor to Harvard, he edited “Drum-Taps: The Complete 1865 Edition” (New York Review Books, 2015), the first edition of the war poems to appear in 150 years.“It’s his fault,” said Kramer of Whitman’s near-erasure of his own book. “We’re correcting him.”And what a book it is. “Drum-Taps” is arguably one of only two books of American Civil War poetry to survive the cannonades of critics. The other is Herman Melville’s 1866 “Battle-Pieces and Aspects of the War.” A third such body of work might be the wartime writing of Emily Dickinson. Some analysts consider her a poet of the Civil War, though she observed its distant tumult only through the domestic (albeit cosmic) lens of her Amherst home.Within its original muted brown covers, “Drum-Taps” contained 51 poems in its April iteration, and 18 more in an October sequel. (Included in the 18 was Whitman’s most famous, and most classically framed, poem, “When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d.”) Both parts are together again, with neat green paper covers by Kramer and his collaborating students.Kramer was among a panel of experts who gathered at Paine Hall on April 30 for “Whitman’s Civil War Revisited: Drum-Taps at 150,” organized by the Mahindra Humanities Center. The event was the last of the school year for the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Seminar on Violence and Non-Violence, a round of lectures, seminars, and symposia that will continue next year to explore what center Director Homi K. Bhabha called “the ethical narratives at the heart of the humanities.”When Whitman self-published “Drum-Taps,” he was a 46-year-old clerk at the Bureau of Indian Affairs and a sometime volunteer nurse in Union hospitals in Washington, D.C. (The Civil War brought American women into nursing, but male nurses of the era outnumbered their female counterparts by four to one.)Whitman’s war was played out in these hospitals, scenes of “chaos and suffering” that contemporaneous images often sanitized, said Kramer, who called the book “an act of mourning.”The poet nursed wounded and dying soldiers, but was also there “to bear witness to their suffering.” Whitman intended “Drum-Taps” to be a work apart from the effusive “Leaves of Grass,” to be its own vivid, particularized document of a war. Kramer noted the muted, modulated voice within the poems, some obviously Whitman but many others borrowed from ordinary soldiers and other observers and victims. The poems “all begin in fury,” he said, “and they all end in heartbreaking compassion.”Panelist Elisa New, Harvard’s Powell M. Cabot Professor of American Literature and a scholar of American poetry, noticed the same change in voice. Before the war and “Drum-Taps,” she said, “Whitman is stuck inside his giant, capacious, generous voice.” That big voice, evident in “Leaves of Grass,” she added, “goes AWOL” during the Civil War.Sitting next to her on the panel, Lawrence Buell, Harvard’s Powell M. Cabot Research Professor of American Literature Emeritus, called “Drum-Taps” Whitman’s “first attempt to cut lose from ‘Leaves of Grass’ and do something else.” The poet’s “all-seeing voice,” he added, became less assertive in “Drum-Taps,” even “elderly.”“Drum-Taps” was a book of “scenes and pictures,” said Kramer, “an attempt by Whitman to match the documentary power of photography,” the emerging art form that vividly chronicled the war’s carnage.New noticed that aspect too, saying the Whitman of “Drum-Taps” employed the tools and voices of the journalist, historian, and documentarian. During the war, Whitman eschewed the ecstasies of the cosmos and became “a practitioner of the quotidian,” she said.At the same time, New added, the war and its horrors and its sudden intimacies liberated Whitman’s voice, allowing for “the emancipation of feelings that are not allowed in peacetime. Energy is released by war.” Kramer, in the book, invented a phrase for how Whitman transformed his famously heterodox sexuality within the chambers of care that war hospitals had to become. The poet of “Drum-Taps,” he said, cultivated an “eroticized compassion.”New will explore “Drum-Taps” (along with Melville’s war poems) in a new HarvardX online American poetry course on the Civil War and its aftermath. The course launches May 8. She praised Kramer’s edition for its “spaciousness,” including white space that allows the poems to become “separate performances” on the page. “You’ve made it all new here.” (In 1865, Whitman was scrambling to cope with the high cost of paper and had to cram his poems onto the pages.)The panel agreed on another facet of “Drum-Taps”: its polyphony or layered melodies. “If there ever was a volume that had musicality in it,” said Buell, “it’s this.” New compared the book to Melville’s goal of his own Civil War poems, for which he “but placed a harp in a window.” Whitman was documenting sounds, said New, including “the conscripted rhythms of the parade ground.”Kramer, a composer, had his own way of expressing Whitman’s musicality. Two of his compositions, set to poems from “Drum-Taps,” were among six that rounded off the event, with live performances by pianist Heinrich Christensen and tenor Eric Christopher Perry.The literary mystery remains unsolved. No one knows why Whitman buried “Drum-Taps” within another book. But at the end of his life, Buell said, Whitman regarded the “Drum-Taps” remnants as “the pivotal, central section” of “Leaves of Grass,” suggesting that the war was his most jarring and formative experience.In the end, the reader benefits from both the early “Drum-Taps” and the shorter version, embedded in Whitman’s great epic. “For me, it’s sort of a twofer,” said Buell of “Drum-Taps” and its second life. “It’s very good where it was and very good where it ended up.”
Imagine trying to find your way across open water with no landmarks and no point of reference. That was the challenge that faced European navigators who launched the Age of Discovery in the 15th century, leaving behind known ports and coastlines to ply the Atlantic and, ultimately, Pacific oceans. Out of sight of land, these sailors relied on the sun and stars, traveling routes known to other explorers ― and to pirates ― and hoping to arrive safely at their destinations. While sailors had long known how to determine latitude, they entered the 18th century still lacking a way to determine a corresponding coordinate while at sea. No wonder, then, that the race to find a way to determine longitude ― finally solved in 1773 ― was the prevailing challenge of the day. It is also the topic of “Lost Without Longitude,” a lecture to be given at 6 p.m. Thursday by Alyssa Goodman, professor of astronomy at Harvard University, who was recently named the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations’ 2015 Scientist of the Year. The talk will be held at Pfizer Lecture Hall.GAZETTE: How important is longitude?GOODMAN: It is one of the two coordinates that we use to measure where we are on Earth, and there are many reasons that we need to know where we are on Earth.GAZETTE: How did sailors navigate without it?GOODMAN: A large variety of ways, and they often didn’t make it. The most common way is that they didn’t go very far from land so they could see landmarks and places they had mapped. Or you could “sail the latitude.” It’s easier to find your latitude at sea than your longitude — that involves tracking the position of the stars, and we’ve been doing that for thousands of years. Even if you don’t understand why the stars move the way they do, there are repeatable patterns that we observe.You can pick a latitude and just sail along it until you get in sight of land. Or, alternatively, pick a latitude and go right or go left. But [the problem without longitude is that] you don’t know how far you have gone: You can run out of supplies, you can have mutinies, you can’t explore new places because you don’t know where you are. That was the Columbus problem — he predicted India but he didn’t know North America was in the way.The other way was to use the relatively crude form [of navigating] known as dead reckoning. That’s where you know where point A and point B are. If you track how fast you are going, frequently, and you take a reading of what direction you are going in, you can kind of plot out a path. It might be a series of a little line segments, northeast at 20 knots for an hour then northwest at 10 knots for two hours. … But the errors compound. If the previous one was wrong, your true position will get farther and farther from the calculated position.Pirates made a lot of money because this sailing at latitude was less dangerous, so the pirates could just hang out at the popular latitudes and wait for ships to come by. So you’d try dead reckoning in part to avoid pirates, but it was a lot more dangerous.GAZETTE: You are going to be offering a course, “PredictionX,” as part of HarvardX. How does this fit with predictions?GOODMAN: The course is a giant two-year effort that involves 25 faculty. I’m the host. We’ve got people who are expert on how humans have predicted their future since very ancient times, Babylonian sheep entrails to now, where we’re worried about climate change simulation and epidemiology. But the middle of that story is the story of predicting your course.GAZETTE: Could you find your longitude, if you were cast adrift?GOODMAN: Yes, using my iPhone. Until it ran out of power.
Read Full Story Eliminating racial and ethnic disparities in health in the U.S. isn’t just the job of the health care sector—it’s the job of society as a whole, argues David R. Williams, Florence Sprague Norman and Laura Smart Norman Professor of Public Health.In a viewpoint article published August 11, 2015 in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), you discussed how unconscious racial bias on the part of health care professionals contributes to deficits in the quality of care given to nonwhites. Can you offer examples of how this bias impacts care?Negative beliefs about race are deeply ingrained in U.S. culture, and popular culture continues to devalue blacks and other nonwhites. For instance, research has shown that greater exposure to TV shows that portray black people negatively is linked with higher levels of racial prejudice. Other research has shown that, in many widely read books and newspapers, the word “black” is most frequently paired with words like “poor,” “violent,” and “dangerous.” The word “white,” on the other hand, is most often linked with words such as “wealthy,” “progressive,” “conventional,” and “educated.” People absorb these sorts of messages and develop unconscious biases that favor whites over blacks. Clinicians are no exception. Previous studies have shown, for instance, that higher levels of implicit bias among clinicians is linked with biased treatment recommendations for black patients, as well as poorer quality patient-doctor communication and lower ratings by patients from racial or ethnic minority groups about the quality of their encounters with doctors.