Weekly Round Up: Money, Racism, health, and a dance

stories that intrigued this week

Lost Coin? The Crisis of the Third Century AD was one of the inflection points of world history. War, invasion, currency collapse, pandemic…these fifty-odd years were when the world moved decisively from the humanistic Classical to the religious Middle Ages. Whether the ephemeral Emperor Sporian existed or not, his story sheds light on a terrible period. Here’s the detective work which may have uncovered him:


Lost Money? We don’t know about cryptocurrencies at the moment, but investors at the conservative end of the financial market also have their woes. Glorifi Bank was started to address the concerns of depositors who were concerned that the banks of Wall Street were becoming too woke, liberal and lefty (surely some mistake?-ed). How this noble aim panned out is summarised rather aptly here:


thanks to P Seymour for this story

Bones and bias Science is supposed to be objective, free of bias and equal to all. That’s the idea, anyway. However, it isn’t long before someone starts presenting their interpretations as incontrovertible truth, with all the social implications that flow from it. Today we present how this happened in Paleoanthropology. But it wasn’t the first place, nor will it be the last.

In Bones and Bodies, forensic anthropologist Alan Morris takes us on a journey to the past, revealing racist interpretations of historically important fossils and artefacts related to the origin of humanity. “The tour is fascinating, demoralizing and insightful,” writes reviewer Fatimah Jackson, a biological anthropologist. “Combing through more than 100 years of scholarship, Morris lays bare how anthropologists built a ‘scientific’ justification for the low status they afforded peoples of African descent, particularly in South Africa, and how this justification became part of a systematic effort to ensure African peoples’ disenfranchisement.”Nature | 6 min read

Dirty Old River We don’t know about your country, but for the last 12 years the rivers and seas of England have slowly transformed into open sewers, filled with toxins and detritus. And it has become a lot worse since the lifting of EU protections after 2020. That admirable organisation Surfers against Sewage is fighting a lonely battle for so many-anglers, boaters, swimmers and anyone who might think that not getting typhoid is part of a quality life. Today we link to their latest report. But surely even readers of The Sun can grasp that clean water is good for the tourism industry?


The virus wakes As if Russia hadn’t caused enough trouble, news of a dormant virus waking from the melting tundra is the stuff of science fiction


A Little Dance Number The old art deco films of the 1930’s breathed and elegance and charm uncatchable in the uncouth, disco ordinated gyrations observed in modern “clubs” and other places of entertainment. To show you how it was done, here’s Fred and Ginger at their best from Swing Time (1936) It’s worth a lot, lot more than 50 cents.

#romans #sewage #bank #pandemic #dance

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