Redecorating Middle-earth in Early Lovecraft

Always Halloween and Never Thanksgiving

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The Big Idea: Katherine Howe

classicpenguin:

Kathryn Howe, editor of The Penguin Book of Witches, wrote this fantastic essay on John Scalzi’s Whatever. If you’re not already convinced at how totally amazing this book is, check out some excerpt on HuffPo and io9.

I think we can all agree that witches are a problem.

Okay, you’re right. Maybe they’re not a problem anymore. Perhaps you think witches are awesome. Perhaps you know a witch or two yourself. Perhaps you are a witch yourself? But if witches today wear their pointy hats with impunity and walk amongst us twirling their wands and trailing cats in their wake in broad daylight, it’s safe to say that it wasn’t always so. Until quite recently, witchcraft was a serious problem indeed. Serious enough that it was against the law. Serious enough that it was punishable by death.

I’ve written about witches for a while, usually in novels like The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane and Conversion, which came out this past summer. And the fascinating problem with witches is that while we can all agree on what a witch looks like, it’s trickier to figure out where she, as a cultural idea, came from. How do we know what witches do? What makes witches so threatening? Why were we so scared of witches that for hundreds of years, we were willing to hang them by the neck until death?

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Filed under katherine howe witches history

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todayinhistory:

September 21st 1866: H.G. Wells born

On this day in 1866, the English science fiction writer H.G. Wells was born in Bromley, Kent. Sometimes called ‘the father of science fiction’, Wells is best known for his works ‘The War of the Worlds’ and ‘The Time Machine’. Wells was also a socialist and a pacifist, and his political views colored much of his later work. In 1938 Orson Welles broadcast his radio play of ‘The War of the Worlds’ as a series of news bulletins which led many Americans to fear a Martian invasion. H.G. Wells died in London in 1946 aged 79.

Happy birthday, H.G. Wells!

Filed under h.g. wells science fiction

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books0977:

Woman Reading by Window. Jessie Wilcox Smith (American, 1863-1935).
Smith was a US illustrator famous for her magazine work in Ladies Home Journal and children’s book illustrations. In 1884, she attended the School of Design for Women and later studied under Thomas Eakins at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. After finishing school, she worked in the production department of the Ladies Home Journal for five years. She furthered her education by taking classes under Howard Pyle and also attending the Brandywine School.

books0977:

Woman Reading by Window. Jessie Wilcox Smith (American, 1863-1935).

Smith was a US illustrator famous for her magazine work in Ladies Home Journal and children’s book illustrations. In 1884, she attended the School of Design for Women and later studied under Thomas Eakins at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. After finishing school, she worked in the production department of the Ladies Home Journal for five years. She furthered her education by taking classes under Howard Pyle and also attending the Brandywine School.

(via falling-inlove-with-books)

Filed under woman reading by window jessie wilcox smith reading art books