Articles to 2011-10-22

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First the link to this week’s complete list.

It will perhaps surprise no one, that I violently disagree with Farrington. The declaration of human rights is exceedingly recent and slavery was abolished in the scientific part of the world very shortly before. It’s still rampant everywhere else. The moral superiority of earlier societies is pure Rousseauan daydreaming without any grounding in fact. Where it exists, it is from vicissitude and necessity as is evident in all places without a comprehensive social system.

Ancestral language seems to have become a hot topic again. Gell-Mann and Ruhlen are not the only ones, see this report in science online.

Sarewitz adds another useful comment on the current descent of science into bowing to authority and mediaeval scholasticism.

Finally—and this has to be a first—a hat trick: three good short stories in three consecutive weeks.

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