Sunday, May 26, 2013

Who is Salman Rushdie?

Some of  my students with Sir Salman Rushdie.

I teach history at the high school level full time and part time at the local  college and university. A few years ago, Salman Rushdie visited East Carolina University and gave a lecture. I urged my students to attend and offered extra credit, but many of my students had never heard of Sir Rushdie.

Salman Rushdie has written many books, but he is best known for his book "SATANIC VERSES." 

Mr. Hill with Sir Rushdie ! ! ! 
For this book, Satanic Verses, where he supposedly insults the founder of Islam--Muhammad--Islamic religious leaders issued a FATWA, or religious edict, calling for RUSHDIE's death. 

Below, I am attaching some video links of interviews with Rushdie for you to learn about Sir Salman Rushdie: 

Islam and War

excerpted from John Keegan's seminal work "A History of Warfare."

  "Muhammad, unlike Christ, was a man of violence; he bore arms, was wounded in battle and preached holy war, jihad, against those who defied the will of God, as revealed to him. His successors view of the world as divided into Dar al-Islam -- the House of Submission, submission to the teachings of Muhammad, collected in the Koran --  and Dar al-Harb, which were those parts yet to be conquered." 
[link to the text]

Muhammad's Conquests

1. Some more academic research on dar al-harb and dar al-Islam can be found in the Ethics and the Use of Force by James Turner Johnson
2. Muhammad as a Warrior

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Tuskeegee Airmen and Modern Art

Title: Tar Baby vs. St. Sebastian
artist: Michael Richards
date created: 1999

The United States military was racially segregated until 1948. 

President Harry S. Truman ended the practice of having military units organized according to race.

Who were the TUSKEEGEE Airmen? 

Here is a WW 2 Era video that gives details about the Tuskeegee Airmen: "Wings for this Man" was produced by the U.S. military at the end of World War Two (1945). It details the trials and accomplishments of the first unit of African American airplane pilots in the U.S. military. The narrator is a very young future president, Ronald Reagan.

The video below is a more modern review of the history of the Tuskeegee Airmen.(part 1 of 2)

The piece of artwork below is an homage to the Tuskeegee Airmen. Examine the work and then read the informational placard at the end: an eerie twist awaits.

Here is some more information about the work from the North Carolina Museum of Art.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Eiffel Tower in ART

Eiffel Tower, c. 1909. Robert Delaunay, French, 1885 – 1941.
Oil on canvas, 38 x 27 3/4 inches (96.5 x 70.5 cm).
Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Louise and Walter Arensberg Collection, 1950.

Link to article about Delaunay's other Eiffel Tower paintings: click here

Washington Crossing the Delaware

 click here for the AUDIO lecture

Patron Saint of Crossfitters

Who is the Patron Saint of Crossfit athletes? 

Saint Sebastian, of course !  

WHY Saint Sebastian? 

Well, he ENDURED lots of PAIN....and ....

CROSSFITTERS love pain  ! !

Crossfitters cannot lay sole claim to him, because he has been recognized as the Patron Saint of all athletes.

OK.....So, ....WHO was Saint Sebastian? 

Sebastian rose in the ranks to become a high ranking soldier in the Roman legions. He joined the Roman Army in the late 200's A.D and became the captain of Emperor Diocletian's bodyguard: the Praetorian Guard. 

Sebastian's path to martyrdom and sainthood started by breaking the Roman law.

 His TROUBLES began when he secretly converted to Christianity at a time when it was not appreciated by Roman authorities. Sebastian's beliefs were discovered when he helped imprisoned Christians and coached them to be strong in body and spirit in the face of Roman persecution; he also converted Romans to Christianity; for these crimes, the Emperor sentenced him to death. 

Sebastian was to be tied to a Tree and shot up with lots of arrows. Although he resembled a porcupine, because of so many arrows stuck in him, HE DID NOT DIE ! !  The Emperor sent another hit team out and they clubbed him to death. So, SEBASTIAN was a DOUBLE MARTYR.....! 

St. Sebastian's TOUGH GUY Checklist: 

1) He was a Roman soldier 

2) He survived being shot up by dozens of arrows.....

3) One death sentence wasn't enough....they had to give him 2  ! ! !