Author Archives: launiusr

Wednesday’s Book Review: “Moon: A Brief History”


Moon: A Brief History. By Bernd Brunner. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2010. 304 pages. Bibliographic essay, illustrations, acknowledgments, index. ISBN-13: 978-0300177695. Hardcover with dustjacket. $16.50 USD. There is no question but that the Moon has had an important … Continue reading

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A Breathless Survey of the History of Terrestrial Tourism, and its Relation to Space Tourism


Tourism in some form has been a part of human existence since the beginning of human existence. In 1994, the United Nations Statistical Committee approved a definition of tourism put forward by its World Tourism Organization (WTO): “The activities of … Continue reading

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Early Ideas of Space Tourism


Beginning at least in the 1960s expectations of space tourism have been the “stuff” of space activism. To date, however, the prospect for broad, sustainable space tourism remains a dream. I would argue that much of the boosterism in the … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “Unintelligent Design”


Unintelligent Design. By Mark Perakh. Amherst, MA: Prometheus Books, 2003. This fine book offers a powerful and sustained critique of the creationism argument versus evolutionary theory, especially the most recent iteration of “intelligent design” which has been politically but not … Continue reading

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Mormon Nauvoo in the Context of Post-Colonial Studies


To an extent underappreciated by historians, the Mormon experience in Nauvoo between 1839 and 1846 represents an expression of colonialism and its antithesis. The field of post-colonial studies has been gaining prominence since the 1970s. While historians and others debate the … Continue reading

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The Three Spheres of Individual Memory


One of the great debates raging in the United States at present is over differing perspectives on the past, and those perspectives drive perceptions of the present and then, in turn relate to how we deal with issues currently facing … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “Sex, Sin, and Blasphemy”


Sex, Sin, and Blasphemy: A Guide to America’s Censorship Wars. By Marjorie Heins. New York: The New Press, 1998 second edition. This author served as the director of the Arts Censorship Project for the American Civil Liberties Union between 1991 … Continue reading

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Setting Course for the Red Planet: Early Flyby Missions to Mars


Robotic exploration of Mars has been one of the persistent efforts of the space age. It began, just as lunar exploration had, in a race between the United States and the Soviet ­Unionto see who would be the first to … Continue reading

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John J. Ide: The NACA’s “Spy” in Pre-WWII Europe


Most people have never heard of John Jay Ide (Jun. 20, 1892-Jan. 12, 1962), who was an international aviation pioneer and European representative for the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). Born at Narragansett Pier, Rhode Island, he was the son … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “Public Dollars, Private Stadiums”


Public Dollars, Private Stadiums: The Battle Over Building Sports Stadiums. By Kevin J. Delaney and Rick Eckstein. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2003. Although published in 2003, this book seems strikingly dated now. In no small part that is because … Continue reading

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