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Category archives for History

Get Inspired and Challenged by Native Youth Congress

One thing is clear where Jon and these kids come from in Native America: there’s not much sugar-coating going on. When you ask a hard question in Indian Country, you’ll likely get a harder answer.

The Camargue: Wild West of France

This post is the latest in the series Places, Experiences and Objects to Dream About, which profiles marvelous locations, unique life experiences and objects of interest to modern explorers that Kike discovers during my travels. The Camargue region is sometimes known as the “Wild West of France.” Located in the southeast of the country, it is Western Europe’s largest river delta.…

122 Countries Have Moved to Ban Nuclear Weapons. What Happens Next?

  United Nations — For the first time in history, a majority of the world’s nations have crafted a treaty to ban nuclear weapons. Hundreds of NGOs united under the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) to push the majority of the world’s countries at the United Nations to create a legally binding instrument to prohibit…

Florida Keys Museum Tells Story Of Wrecker’s Paradise

John Jacob Housman’s character was complex and colorful. He was an energetic entrepreneur, a shrewd businessman, a daring adventurer, a visionary developer, and it was all wrapped around the soul of a pirate. And in 1830, he found the perfect place to use these traits to his best advantage—Indian Key, a remote, tropical island in…

10 Handfuls of India

While working on farms and learning about seed preservation this past year for the Fulbright-National Geographic Storytelling Fellowship, I have really gotten to eat some amazing foods. If my hands weren’t in the soil or toiling with seeds, they were usually grabbing the nearest edible item. People talk about how amazing Indian cuisine is — the thalis, the street foods, the home-cooked meals — and yes, those are all pretty great, but where this creative and intricate cuisine comes from, its ingredients, its flavors, its uncooked beginnings, that’s where the real magic lives. This fertile soil (at least that which is untouched by deforestation, drought, or chemicals) breathes so much beauty into our hands. And I consider myself beyond lucky to have held such raw beauty, however briefly.

Holding the Cosmos in Our Hands

“The seed comes from the tree, the tree comes from the seed. It’s like the chicken and the egg. If people want to understand it, they will break the seed apart — they will actually kill it — to see the cells, the chromosomes and the genetics. There is another way to look at this. I plant a seed and a miracle happens — something new is born out of this carbohydrate and protein, a new life is born. This is a miracle, you see? The miracle of life.”

Kyrgyzstan Struggles to Revive its Tradition of Epic Bards

Learning a half-million-line poem isn’t easy. “It takes a lot,” says Ulukbek Toktobolot Uulu, 22, a music teacher who is just beginning his training as a manaschi, a traditional reciter of epic poetry in Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan. For about a year Toktobolot has been studying Manas, the country’s ancient and colossal national poem,…

Crops Rising from a Cracked Desert

By Nexus Media, with Michael Kotutwa Johnson Michael Kotutwa Johnson is an environmental policy expert in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment at the University of Arizona. He is also a Hopi dryland farmer. He sat down with Nexus Media to share centuries-old techniques for growing food on an unforgiving landscape. This interview…

Long lost story-telling Sioux, Reaching-for-Peace Pipe carrier, comes to light

A remote cabin high in Utah’s Kolob Canyon country above the famous Zion Canyon seems an unlikely place for the “discovery” of an iconic piece of American Indian history. A beaded peace pipe bag has come to light that depicts a soldier holding a rifle with fixed bayonet and a Native American with bow and arrows.  Both…

Resource Extraction and American Indians: The Invisible History of America

The recent American Indian protests at Standing Rock in North Dakota, protesting environmentally irresponsible and culturally damaging resource extraction, encouraged me to reach out to my American Indian friends.  The blood of the Cherokee Nation flows in the veins of my own family members.  I wanted to draw out their stories and to report on…

In Central Asia, a Stone Age Workshop Hints at Humankind’s Obsession With Blades

Journalist-explorer Paul Salopek is walking across the world in the footsteps of our ancestors. He posts this dispatch from Ak-Olon, Kyrgyzstan. We stand in a remote canyon in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan. The canyon debouches onto a pale barren plain once crisscrossed by camel trains. Kubatbek Tabaldyev leans into a wall of black stone. The…

Historic USS North Carolina, Saved Once By Schoolkids’ Nickels And Dimes, Being Rescued Again From Insidious Threat

The battleship USS North Carolina survived the savage combat of World War II and was snatched from the scrap heap in 1961 by a determined effort of her namesake state’s residents. Now, more than a half-century after the battleship was brought to Wilmington to become a war memorial and museum, North Carolina residents again are making a…

Storytelling in a Slum’s Silicon Valley

“We have a different kind of Silicon Valley here,” Nawneet Ranjan explains. Founder of the Dharavi Diary: Slum and Rural Innovation Project, Ranjan tells how his students use storytelling, technology, and the power of their diversity to raise awareness and develop solutions for issues facing the Dharavi slum community in Mumbai, India.

Hokulea’s Worldwide Voyage Arrives in Rapa Nui

“This is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate our shared commitment to preserving traditions, values, and environment, but also to discuss the challenges that we face in light of changes to our oceans, education, and well-being as island people,” said pwo navigator Nainoa Thompson.

Young Fishers Literally Don’t Know What They’re Missing

Growing up seeing an already depleted ocean as normal, today’s Filipino fishers often lack the awareness of how rich their waters were just a generation ago. This project is helping bring those memories to light.