Aristotle famously began the Nicomachean Ethics with a declaration: “Every art and every investigation, and likewise every practical pursuit or undertaking, seems to aim at some good.”He contends that a ‘final good’ must exist in order to surmount the difficulties that would arise from an endless regress of ‘good things.’ Aristotle concludes that “what is the […]

The declaration that “tyranny naturally arises out of democracy” is the famous, anti-democratic thesis of Plato’s Republic. While the Ancient Greek philosopher’s criticisms of direct democracy have led to the widespread denunciation of such systems of government, the specter of absolute democracy continues to gnaw at political institutions worldwide, remerging as a referendum. Indeed, referenda […]

Women’s education level is often considered a significant indicator of modernity and socio-economic progress. Today, there is a major global push to increase women’s access to education in an effort to dismantle the patriarchal societal structures that have left women disenfranchised. This effort is especially pressing given that two-thirds of all illiterate people are women; […]

“We’re out.”With this laconic declaration, the Daily Mail delivered Friday’s simple, momentous truth to a polarized Britain; the torrent of patriotism and triumph on one side was matched only by the apocalyptic lamentations of the other.The United Kingdom chose to leave the European Union.While much of the county’s political establishment was left to reflect on […]

Jang Jin-Sung is the is the pseudonym of a former North Korean propaganda poet and government official who defected to South Korea in 2004. He currently runs the North Korean defectors’ magazine, New Focus, which aims to report on North Korean news without North Korean media restrictions.What are the standards for a good propaganda poem?  The only […]

On the eve of the Holocaust, Hitler addressed a gathering of Wehrmacht commanders at his home in Obersalzberg, just a week before the invasion of Poland and the forthcoming extermination of around 90 percent of Polish Jews. “Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians,” he asked. Historians have reached almost unanimous […]

“Gross National Happiness (GNH) is more important than Gross National Product.” This famous quotation by Bhutan’s Fourth King Jigme Singye Wangchuk can be seen printed in the offices of Bhutanese government officials and written in crayon on the walls of classrooms all around the country. For decades, this motto has served as the country’s guiding principle and […]

Erratic! Dangerous! Brainwashed! Theocratic! Whichever epithet is ascribed to North Korea and its people, the common image cast of the rogue nation has been a very distinct one. Widespread belief about the country depicts a credulous population that worships its Supreme Leader as a deity, undeterred by the institutional sadism atop which the government is […]

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