Freethought Almanac

Lighting a candle in toxic air.
November 30, 2013
This Week in Freethought History (November 24-30)

Read about Benedict (Baruch) Spinoza, Andrew Carnegie, the First Thanksgiving, Chinese-American martial artist Bruce Lee, Randy Newman, Louis XVI recognizes Protestants, Mark Twain, and more …

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November 27, 2013
November 27: Bruce Lee (1940)

It was on this date, November 27, 1940, that Chinese-American martial artist, actor and creator of Jeet Kune Do, Bruce Lee (李小龍) was born Lee Jun-fan (李振藩) in San Francisco’s Chinatown, the son of a Chinese opera star father and a half-Caucasian mother. Lee’s family returned to their home in Hong Kong after his birth, […]

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November 23, 2013
This Week in Freethought History (November 17-23)

Read about “Frailty” and doing what God commands, English experimental physicist Patrick Blackett, American film actress and director Jodie Foster, English Romantic poet Thomas Chatterton, Voltaire, American comedian Rodney Dangerfield, American poet and historian Jennifer Michael Hecht, and more …

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November 23, 2013
November 23: Jennifer Michael Hecht (1965)

It was on this date, November 23, 1965, that American poet, historian, philosopher, and author Jennifer Michael Hecht was born on Long Island, in New York. By 1995 she had earned her Ph.D. in the History of Science from Columbia University, where she now teaches poetry in the Graduate Writing Program, while also teaching poetry […]

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November 22, 2013
November 22: Rodney Dangerfield (1921)

It was on this date, November 22, 1921, the American comedian Rodney Dangerfield was born Jacob Rodney Cohen to Jewish parents. Quipped Rodney, “When I was born I was so ugly the doctor slapped my mother. … I was so ugly my mother used to feed me with a sling shot. … When I was […]

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November 18, 2013
November 18: Patrick Blackett (1897)

It was on this date, November 18, 1897, that English experimental physicist Patrick Blackett was born Patrick Maynard Stuart Blackett in Kensington, London. From a childhood interest in model airplanes and wireless (crystal radio), he won entry to the Royal Naval College, Osborne, Isle of Wight. When World War I broke out, Blackett was assigned […]

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November 16, 2013
This Week in Freethought History (November 10-16)

Read about actor Richard Burton, science fiction writer Kurt Vonnegut Jr, feminist pioneer Elizabeth Cady Stanton, feminist and atheist activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali, French painter Claude Monet, German philosopher and theologian Albert the Great, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and more …

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November 16, 2013
November 16: The Religious Freedom Restoration Act (1993)

It was on this date, November 16, 1993, that the U.S. Congress passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (Pub. L. No. 103-141, 107 Stat. 1488). RFRA, as it is called, was introduced in March 1993 and was aimed at preventing laws that substantially burden a person's free exercise of their religion. Although invalidated at the […]

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November 14, 2013
November 14: Claude Monet (1840)

It was on this date, November 14, 1840, that the founder of French impressionist painting, Claude Monet was born. The term “Impressionism” is derived from the title of his 1872 painting Impression, Sunrise (Impression, soleil levant). From his earliest days, Claude-Oscar Monet wanted to paint. He was enrolled in Le Havre secondary school of the […]

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November 13, 2013
November 13: Ayaan Hirsi Ali (1969)

It was on this date, November 13, 1969, that Somali-born American feminist and atheist activist, writer and politician Ayaan Hirsi Ali was born Ayaan Hirsi Magan in Mogadishu, Somalia. While her father, a leading figure in the Somalian Revolution, was in prison, Ayann’s grandmother had the 5-year-old young girl’s genitals ritually cut off in what […]

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Ronald Bruce Meyer




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