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View Diary: Books So Bad They're Good: Octagonal Houses and the Science of Sex (114 comments)

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  •  There's also the rumor about Geronimo's skull (2+ / 0-)
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    RiveroftheWest, quarkstomper

    Somehow ending up at the Skull & Bones Society clubhouse in New Haven.  It's not true (thank God), but seriously, there were a LOT of people in the 19th century who were seriously obsessed with other people's skeletal remains.

    •  They were excited about scientific discovery (1+ / 0-)
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      and, while they wouldn't think of mistreating the remains or "their" group, it seems as though other people in foreign places were like plants and animals, part of a "primitive" culture that they could use as they pleased. It's very hard to understand.

      •  Exactly (1+ / 0-)
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        The casual racism and condescension of that time period is, to say the least, breathtaking.

        •  I've noticed this in re-reading books (1+ / 0-)
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          from the WW and post-war eras. I never even noticed the racist, sexist language when I read these years ago. After all, it surrounded you every day and was used so commonly and so casually it made little impression.

          Now, even though I still enjoy these stories the language is like a slap in the face. Even when -- maybe especially when -- it's clear the author's attitudes aren't necessarily racist/sexist but just an unthinking reflection of the world around them.

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