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The Blank Slate – It isn’t what Pinker thinks

By Paul So In Steven Pinker’s popular book The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature, Pinker characterizes the Blank State as “the idea that the human mind has no inherent structure and can be inscribed at will by society or ourselves.” Pinker is characterizing the loose set of views, commonly held by today’s humanities and social science intellectuals, […]

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Who’s in the Name?

by E. John Winner Recently, fans of a certain aggressive R&B music found cause to mourn the loss of one of the most prolific songwriters in popular music history. He was christened Prince Rogers Nelson [1], and we already have a problem.  He was not really named after a previous Nelson – he was named after a jazz band, the […]

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Mixing but Not Matching

by Mark English It’s easier to see – and say – what’s not the case than to say what is the case; to see – and say – what’s wrong with other people’s views than to outline one’s own in a coherent and convincing way. In fact, I have doubts that it is possible to achieve the latter at all […]

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Provocations

by Daniel A. Kaufman The clusterfuck that is the Indiana “bathroom bill” (and every other similar piece of legislation) has drawn a lot of negative attention to some pretty terrible people, which, I guess, is a good thing, but it also has brought to light a number of confusions that seem to surround issues of sex, gender, and segregated environments; […]

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Goldsteinism in San Francisco

By David Ottlinger On a bright, cold day in April (actually it was late March), undergraduate Cory Goldstein was on his San Francisco State University campus. [1] He was confronted by two fellow students, both African American, who stood in his path. Goldstein is white. The first, a young woman, looked up to the second and asked, “Do you have […]

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