In December 2017 a Canadian billionaire couple, Barry and Honey Sherman, were found dead in their Toronto home. At first the police suspected a murder-suicide, but after protests from the family and a private counter-investigation, the police were persuaded to change their theory of the case. The investigation is ongoing. This post provides links to three podcast series that I find helpful for learning about the case in all its complexities.
This blog series is focused on my main research subjects: the history of Dutch- and German-speaking adult baptizing Protestants (Mennonites, Doopsgezinden and others maligned as “Anabaptists”) and other European religious minorities before about 1850. This is a very specialized area of research.
With this post I’m starting a new focus for upcoming entries: “Podcast Pairings”. I plan to use posts under this heading to record my broader reading and listening interests.
UNDER CONSTRUCTION…This is a draft post, started on Jan. 31, punk superstar John Lydon’s birthday (born 1956). Is it a coincidence that Menno Simons also died on Jan. 31? Weird, right? What could be weirder? Answer: The fact that Menno Simons shaped his career as a religious reformer around his reaction against the legacy and memory of Jan van Leiden (aka John of Leyden)!
This post shares images from a famous 19th-century German printmaker that depict Anabaptist rule at Münster in the 1530s. It also outlines how these images have been confused repeatedly as 16th-century images.
UPDATED: 1 Jan. 2023
ORIGINALLY POSTED: April 2018.
The theme of CBC Radio’s Podcast Playlist from 8 March 2018 is the cultural meaning of hair (“Long, Short, Straight, Curly: Podcasts about Every Type of Hair”). What do parts on the right versus the left mean? How are curls or straight hair related to political views? What about hair’s role in group and personal identity (e.g., Black and Jewish cultures of hair)? One purpose of this blog post is recommend this excellent episode of the show.
UPDATE (Aug. 2020): Slate’s Decoder Ring series has recently posted an episode on the “Mystery of the Mullett”.
It’s fabulous! Among other reasons, it’s a fun romp through recent cultural history (the sort of stuff I grew up with), and it ends with some serious reflections on backwards projections of cultural memory as well as the dangers of fake evidence and online trolling.
A second purpose is to gather and eventually add some further thoughts about the cultural meaning of hair in the study of early modern heresy and dissent. Gary Waite’s writing about visual depictions of wild heretics is part of my inspiration for the idea, as is my own recent far-too-long hair and experiments with a beard. For the former, see Gary Waite, “Naked Harlots or Devout Maidens? Images of Anabaptist Women in the Context of the Iconography of Witches in Europe, 1525–1650” in Sisters: Myth and Reality of Anabaptist, Mennonite, and Doopsgezind Women, ca 1525-1900 (2104).
I created this post on the second full day of the conference of the Intl Assoc for the History of Religions.