Friday, May 30, 2014

From the Stake to the Altar

On this day in 1431, a nineteen-year-old girl was burned alive in the old marketplace in Rouen.

She climbed the scaffold wearing an enormous cap, which said:


After she was burned to death, her body was thrown from a bridge into the Seine, so the waters would carry her far away.

She had been condemned by the Catholic Church and the Kingdom of France.

Her name was Joan of Arc.

Heard of her?

~Eduardo Galeano, Children of the Days

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sister Joan Chittister on "The Role of Archives in a Changing World."

"We stand deprived of twelve centuries of history that men take for granted, claim as their glory, count as their success, and consider must be our models, too.

And why? Because no one kept the archives of women–of the other half, the disdained half, the scorned and disparaged half of the human race.

Where were the archivists then who would judge such a history valuable, notable, necessary at least to the intellectual integrity of the male writing and research of the rest of the human enterprise?

To this day, as women Benedictines we know nothing of our histories, our great leaders, our dreams, our devastations, or our centuries-old learnings about what it means to be either spiritual or alive as independent spiritual women. We know only that they were there–and gone–and made invisible."- Sister Joan Chittister on "The Role of Archives in a Changing World."

Read her entire speech at PSU here.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Someone else’s debt

On this day in 1948 the state of Israel was born.

Within a few months, more than eight hundred thousand Palestinians had been deported and more than five hundred of their villages had been turned into rubble.

Those villages, where olive, fig, almond and other fruit trees grew, now lie buried under highways, shopping malls and amusement parks. They are dead and unnamed on the map rechiristened by the Government Names Committee.

Not much of Palestine is left. The two thousand years of persecution suffered by the Jewish people was invoked to justify this implacable gluttony, complete with property titles granted by the Bible.

Persecuting Jews had always been a European sport. Now the Palestinians are paying the bill.

~Eduardo Galeano, Children of the Days

Photo by Hamde Abu Rahma

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

We know how HIStory counts - how will HERstory count?

"History counts its skeletons in round numbers. A thousand and one remains a thousand, as though the one had never existed." —Szymborska