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The Hundred Foot Journey – A Trip Worth Taking

In this era of celebrity chefs and televised chef competitions like Iron Chef, we know that some people have a gastronomic sense akin to perfect pitch. In The Hundred Foot Journey, the gifted one is Hassan Kadam (Manish Dayal), member of an Indian restaurant family forced to flee their homeland after political rioters set fire to their restaurant, killing their matriarch. The Kadams wander through Europe se ...

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Robin Williams on the Ultimate Christian Gift

I hesitated to write about the tragic death of Robin Williams. I know very little about clinical depression, so I fear saying something stupid or ignorant about it – and please forgive me if I do. The better part of wisdom is to stop blogging and learn from the experts about depression. And I’d like to begin with a disclaimer: I’m interpreting what Robin Williams said about God. But please, don’t misunderst ...

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Disability Is Not Just a Metaphor by Christopher Shinn

Christopher Shinn is an American playwright. Born in Hartford, Connecticut in 1975, Shinn lives in New York and teaches playwriting in The New School for Drama. A 2005 winner of an OBIE in Playwriting and a Guggenheim Fellowship in Playwriting plus a 2008 Pulitzer Prize finalist, the plays he has written have been produced around the world. Mimetic theory and personal experience guides his writing, as this ...

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Why I Hope Ann Coulter is Right: Soccer and the Moral Decay of the United States

In the midst the World Cup, conservative columnist Ann Coulter wrote a scathing article about soccer. She denounced the sport for infecting the United States with moral deterioration. She wrote, “Any growing interest in soccer can only be a sign of the nation’s moral decay.” Coulter is a shock journalist who specializes in scandal. She garners attention by shaming and demonizing liberals, in this case for o ...

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Democracy: No Longer For Sale?

Ah, 1961. The year -- certain aspects of it, anyway -- are almost impossible to remember. "Whites only" bathrooms, for instance. U.S. Rep. John Lewis, legendary civil rights leader and crosser of lines, recently tweeted an ancient mugshot memorializing his arrest that year for using a "whites only" bathroom in Mississippi and, in the process, amping up outrage against Jim Crow segregation in the South and i ...

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Hobby Lobby, Rivalry and Choosing Grace

Though Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby has been argued and decided by the highest court in the land, the battle rages on. Politicians, columnists, editorial staffs and bloggers are furiously duking it out along clearly drawn battle lines. On one side, we have the Champions of Religious Freedom. Squaring off against them are the Defenders of Women’s Rights. The Champions are celebrating a victory for free expression ...

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Myth, Monsters, and Gospel: Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Redemption

WARNING: Spoilers ahead for Scoobie Newbies (or anyone compelled to find out what that means by watching the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series!) Any Joss Whedon fans in the house? It’s Throwback Thursday, and what better way for The Raven Foundation to show the ubiquitousness of mimesis than to jump on the bandwagon of this current social phenomenon with a blast-from-the past article analyzing an episode of a ...

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Goodness for Sale: A Consumer Report

What’s the difference between fake goodness and the real thing? Good people want to know. In fact, we need to know because fake goodness is a marketable commodity. Companies know that doing the right thing is important to us, and so they work hard to connect their products with “doing good”. The success of Whole Foods Market (higher priced foods that are natural and organic) and the Tesla Model S (electric ...

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Maleficent the Feminist? A Cautionary Tale

If the new Disney Studios movie Maleficent is, as some are saying, a feminist attempt to redeem images of weak and powerless women in fairy tales, then it is a cautionary tale. Feminism has always been its own worst enemy when it strives to create women in the image of men rather than encourage women to abandon rivalry with men and seek their flourishing elsewhere. This is a story about the redemptive power ...

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Dancing with Mimetic Theory

There are two related misconceptions about what mimetic theory says about being human: that (1) we are inherently violent and (2) unavoidably slavish imitators, incapable of individual or original expression. Mimetic theory, a theory of violence and imitation, says nothing of the sort, in fact it leads to the opposite conclusions. The problems arise because of misconceptions about violence and imitation tha ...

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