And here I sit looking forlornly at my coffee. Honestly, I feel TAME. Not that I’m a genius, but they’re talking about creativity here, and all these people apparently needed the equivalent of rocket fuel to turbocharge their mental engines. Does the fact that I can function on mere coffee instead of “cocaline elixirs” (doesn’t that sound elegant?) make me a better or worse creative than some of the following folks?
These intellectual luminaries indulged, Robert T. Gonzalez tell us, and asks: Is intelligence related to an increased likelihood of recreational drug use?
It’s an interesting hypothesis, and one that’s been gaining momentum in recent years. Let’s meet 10 of history’s most influential scientific and technological visionaries, along with their drugs of choice.
Sigmund Freud — Cocaine
To Freud, cocaine was more than a personal indulgence; he regarded it as a veritable wonder drug, and for many years was a huge proponent of its use in a wide array of applications. In a letter written to his fianceé, Martha, Freud wrote: “If all goes well, I will write an essay [on cocaine] and I expect it will win its place in therapeutics by the side of morphine and superior to it … I take very small doses of it regularly against depression and against indigestion and with the most brilliant of success.”
Really Harsh Reviews of 20 Classic 20th-Century Novels
In 1998, the Modern Library polled its editorial board to determine the 100 best novels published that century. While these classics are adored with the benefit of time and hindsight, they weren’t universally loved when they were first published. Here are 20 harsh reviews of some of the best novels of the 20th century.
The Sun Also Rises first edition, fair use, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Hemingway’s debut novel about masculinity and the Lost Generation typifies the sparse and powerful writing style that his subsequent work would become known for. Some critics still believe it is his most important work. His mother Grace, on the other hand, did not. In a letter she wrote that Hemingway kept all his life, his mother said, “What is the matter? Have you ceased to be interested in loyalty, nobility, honor and fineness in life … surely you have other words in your vocabulary besides ‘damn’ and ‘bitch’—Every page fills me with a sick loathing—if I should pick up a book by any other writer with such words in it, I should read no more—but pitch it in the fire.” It would seem that mother, in fact, may not know best.
The 10 Most Annoying Teenagers From Books
“We’ll be the first to admit that being a teenager is pretty rough,” Huff Post Books says. Acne, battling with hormones, battling with frenemies, battling with parents, thinking you’re right about everything only to be told constantly that you’re wrong. It’s the worst.
That being said, once you reach adulthood, you realize how annoying you were as a teenager, and often look back on this time period with mortification and regret about all the horrible things you said and did (sorry, Mom!).
While we do think that all of the following teens are ridiculously annoying, we feel their pain.
Who doesn’t hate Amy March? Remember how she throws all of Jo’s writing in the fire?! Oh, didn’t you just want to slap her in her little smug face? And then she grows up to marry Laurie, which is just so, so wrong on so, so many levels. Ugh, Amy. Didn’t falling through the ice teach you anything?
15 Books To Spark Your Feminist Awakening
We asked women on BuzzFeed’s editorial staff what book gave them their “a-ha!” feminist moment. A starter guide to your feminist reading collection from Katie Heaney, BuzzFeed Staff
The Hidden Face of Eve, Nawal El Saadawi
“[This book] was one of the first times I looked at Western society through the eyes of a woman who was completely outside the culture rather than straddling the line, like myself and other marginalized people living inside the society. The similarities I saw between the two of us gave me a greater understanding of intersectionality, and it really illustrated and highlighted for me the need for womanism. It made me think of women globally, rather than locally, which is an incredibly powerful thing.” —Tracy
“Louise Fitzhugh’s Harriet the Spy (and its sequel, The Long Secret) are books I read when I was under 10 years old. Though Harriet came out in 1964, it was utterly contemporary. Harriet is a curious and smart kid, and I found a template in her. It was only later that I realized how rare it was, especially for the time, that she doesn’t care about how she looks, she fears no one, and she’s friends with both girls and boys. What an important character! I can’t wait to read the books to my sons when they’re old enough.” —Kate
The original Cybermage?
The reissue of WORLDWEAVERS Cybermage by Sky Warrior Books is now out in both ebook form and in print.
Are Stonehenge’s Boulders Actually Big Bells?
Countless theories and tools have attempted to make sense of the set of raised stones and earthworks in the south of England, categorizing it as an astronomical calendar, a healing site, a burial ground, or all of them at once.
Now, Robinson Meyer writes in The Atlantic, a study from the Royal College of Art in London has suggested a new possibility: The monument might make music.
Life Is Like Blue Jelly
Margaret Mead Discovers the Meaning of Existence in a Dream, Maria Popova tells us at Brain Pickings.
Margaret Mead: Last night I had the strangest dream. I was in a laboratory with Dr. Boas and he was talking to me and a group of other people about religion, insisting that life must have a meaning, that man couldn’t live without that. Then he made a mass of jelly-like stuff of the most beautiful blue I had ever seen — and he seemed to be asking us all what to do with it. I remember thinking it was very beautiful but wondering helplessly what it was for. People came and went making absurd suggestions. Somehow Dr. Boas tried to carry them out — but always the people went away angry, or disappointed — and finally after we’d been up all night they had all disappeared and there were just the two of us. He looked at me and said, appealingly “Touch it.” I took some of the astonishingly blue beauty in my hand, and felt with a great thrill that it was living matter. I said “Why it’s life — and that’s enough” — and he looked so pleased that I had found the answer — and said yes “It’s life and that is wonder enough.”
Quote of the Day
“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.” ~ John Green, The Fault in Our Stars
Comments welcome. What do you think?