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Recommended reading / viewing / listening

August 15, 2011

Most of these great items come from my Twitter feed or Facebook news feed. Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more fascinating videos, articles, essays and criticism. Read past recommendations from this series here.

1. Nancy Wake, saboteur and special agent, died on August 7th, aged 98
The Economist | Aug. 13
“Of the 39 SOE women infiltrated into France, 11 of whom would die in concentration camps, she was perhaps the most redoubtable.”

2. Pursuing the Grail of an Earthquake Predictor, but Facing Skeptics
By John Upton | The New York Times | Aug. 13
“The project, called QuakeFinder, involves installing some 200 five-foot-tall sensors near fault lines to measure changes in underground magnetic fields and detect electrically charged particles in the air. The theory behind it is that changes in electromagnetic fields can foretell quakes.”

3. Why It’s Smart to Be Bilingual
By Casey Schwartz | Newsweek | Aug. 7
“The brain’s real super-food may be learning new languages.”

4. Can We Make Jurassic Park Yet?
By Natalie Wolchover | Life’s Little Mysteries | Aug. 11
“Even if we do someday find ancient dinosaur DNA, it will be in shambles — snippets of code just a few base pairs long. We’ll have no idea how to stitch the snippets together. Thus, sequencing the dinosaur genome from fossilized tissues or blood may never be a viable route to their revival.”

5. The Moche Culture – Some Historical Background
By Jaime Briceno | Arqueologia del Peru | Aug. 13
“Studies of Moche iconography have contributed substantially to our understanding, offering insight into Moche ideology and ritual.”

6. Jessica Chastain’s Busy 2011 Launches Her Star
Huff Post Entertainment | Aug 13
“Attention, moviegoers: Here is the preemptive answer to the question each one of you will, inevitably, ask at some point over the next six months: Her name is Jessica Chastain, and she’s here to stay.”

7. The Longform.org Guide to Quarterbacks
By Max Linsky | Slate.com | Aug. 13
“From pre-draft jitters to post-retirement bliss, five glimpses into the minds of NFL QB’s.”

8. London Labour and the London Poor by Henry Mayhew
By Robert Douglas-Fairhurst | The Guardian | Oct. 16, 2010
“Henry Mayhew’s dazzling ‘Cyclopoedia’ of London street life gave voice to the city’s poor and has influenced writers from Kingsley to Larkin.”

9. The Guy Battling a Sunburn and His Girlfriend’s HPV
Daily Intel :: New York Magazine | June 6
“Once a week, Daily Intel takes a peek behind doors left slightly ajar. This week, the Guy Battling a Sunburn and His Girlfriend’s HPV: male, writer/editor, 24, Bushwick, straight, in a relationship.”

10. Attack on the Osirak reactor
Witness :: BBC News | June 8
“It is 30 years since Israeli war planes destroyed a nuclear reactor in Iraq.”

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