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David Lynch Teaches Creativity and Film: A New Online Course

How many of us became David Lynch fans while first watching one of his films? And how many of those fans also left filled with the desire to make a film themselves? Though the long-circulating term "Lynchian" puts a name to Lynch's distinctively stimulating and disturbing cinematic style, it increasingly seems that no filmmaker, no matter how skilled, can quite pull off that style but Lynch himself. But even if you can never be the man who directed the likes of Eraserhead, Blue Velvet, a...
Tags: Google, Hollywood, Film, College, David, Online Courses, Bob, Seoul, David Lynch, Werner Herzog, Facebook Twitter, Lynch, Mulholland Drive, Colin Marshall, 21st Century Los Angeles, Facebook David Lynch


Mythos: An Animation Retells Timeless Greek Myths with Abstract Modern Designs

Designer Stephen Kelleher and animator Chris Guyot present "Mythos," an animation that tells timeless stories--Greek myths--with simple abstract designs. Here's how they describe this project where the ancient unexpectedly meets the modern: For centuries the Greek Myths have been used as cautionary tales and teaching tools for people both young and old. These stories convey deep wisdom about the human condition which continue to resonate with us. I wanted to honor these ancient stories by i...
Tags: Google, Facebook, Twitter, California, College, Animation, Zeus, Ideo, Facebook Twitter, Demeter, Daedalus, Midas, Hilma, Persephone, Klint, Dionysus


Virginia Woolf & Friends Name Their Favorite and Least Favorite Writers in a Newly Unearthed 1923 Survey

Celebrity Twitter can be fun… sometimes…. Tabloids still have mass appeal, albeit mainly on the web. But for those who want to see the introverted and bookish caught off-guard and off the cuff, times are a little tough. Writers can more easily control their image than actors or pop stars, naturally. Most aren’t nearly as recognizable and subject to constant pop culture surveillance. Literary scandals rarely go beyond plagiarism or politics. Sometimes one might wish—as in the days of mean drunks...
Tags: Google, College, Virginia, West, Literature, Vox, James Joyce, Henry James, Kennedy, Virginia Woolf, Thompson, Marcel Proust, Facebook Twitter, Virgil, Joyce, Dostoevsky


Isaac Asimov Predicts the Future of Civilization–and Recommends Ways to Ensure That It Survives (1978)

When we talk about what could put an end to civilization today, we usually talk about climate change. The frightening scientific research behind that phenomenon has, apart from providing a seemingly infinite source of fuel for the blaze of countless political debates, also inspired a variety of dystopian visions, credible and otherwise, of no small number of science-fiction writers. One wonders what a science-fictional mind of, say, Isaac Asimov's caliber would make of it. Asimov died in...
Tags: Google, College, Stanford, United States, Sci Fi, Seoul, Mount Everest, Facebook Twitter, Isaac Asimov, Asimov, Edmund Hillary, Paul Ehrlich, Colin Marshall, Tenzing Norgay, 21st Century Los Angeles, Computerization Global Co


The Gnarly Surf Rock of Dick Dale (RIP): Watch the Legend Play “Misirlou,” Surfin’ the Wedge,” and “Pipeline” (with Stevie Ray Vaughan)

The Endless Summer is over. The archetypal 1966 surf documentary might have been scored by The Sandals, but the sound and the cultural dominance of surf culture would perhaps never come into being, and may not have survived the decade, without Dick Dale, who died on March 18th at the age of 81. His gnarly, menacing guitar on songs like “Miserlou” and “Pipeline” turned a fad dominated by the teen anthems of The Beach Boys and Annette Funicello’s post-Mouseketeers bikini and beehive into g...
Tags: Google, Music, Washington Post, College, Jimi Hendrix, United States, Quentin Tarantino, Dick Dale, Wray, Facebook Twitter, Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Dale, Annette Funicello, Josh Jones, Durham NC Follow


Bohemian Rhapsody’s Bad Editing: A Breakdown

Bohemian Rhapsody may have won the Oscar for Best Editing. But video essayist Thomas Flight isn't persuaded. In a 13-minute video, Flight deconstructs a 104-second clip from the biopic, revealing the excessive 60 cuts that make up the scene. That translates into a dizzying cut every 1.8 seconds on average. For Thomas Flight, Bohemian Rhapsody is nothing short of a “masterclass in bad editing.” For you, Flight's video offers a nice short crash course in film editing. According to The Wash...
Tags: Google, Facebook, Benedict Cumberbatch, Film, Washington Post, College, Facebook Twitter, WaPo, HANNAH, John Ottman, Dexter Fletcher, Ottman, Thomas Flight, Johnny Cash David Bowie Janis Joplin Frank Sinatra


The Lou Reed Archive Opens at the New York Public Library: Get Your Own Lou Reed Library Card and Check It Out

This past October marked the fifth anniversary of Lou Reed’s death. This month marks what would have been his 77th birthday. It seems like as good a time as any to revisit his legacy. As of this past Friday, anyone can do exactly that in person at the New York Public Library. And they can do so with their own special edition NYPL Lou Reed library card. The NYPL has just opened to the public the Lou Reed Archive, “approximately 300 linear feet,” the library writes in a press release, “of paper r...
Tags: Google, Music, New York, College, Edgar Allan Poe, Brooklyn, Nypl, Literature, Andy Warhol, Ornette Coleman, Lincoln Center, Archives, Lou Reed, New York Public Library, Laurie Anderson, Reed


How Does the Rorschach Inkblot Test Work?: An Animated Primer

A frightening monster? Two friendly bears? Say what!? As anybody with half a brain and the gift of sight knows, the black and red inkblot below resembles nothing so much as a pair of gnomes, gavotting so hard their knees bleed. ...or perhaps it’s open to interpretation. Back in 2013, when Open Culture celebrated psychologist Hermann Rorschach’s birthday by posting the ten blots that form the basis of his famous personality test, readers reported seeing all sorts of things in Card 2: A u...
Tags: Psychology, Google, College, Nazis, New York City, Neuroscience, Lewis Carroll, Alice, Yale University, Facebook Twitter, Searls, Hermann Rorschach, Rorschach, Ayun Halliday, Damion Searls, Rorshach


Take a Journey Inside Vincent Van Gogh’s Paintings with a New Digital Exhibition

Vincent van Gogh died in 1890, long before the emergence of any of the visual technologies that impress us here in the 21st century. But the distinctive vision of reality expressed through paintings still captivates us, and perhaps captivates us more than ever: the latest of the many tributes we continue to pay to van Gogh's art takes the form Van Gogh, Starry Night, a "digital exhibition" at the Atelier des Lumières, a disused foundry turned projector- and sound system-laden multimedia space i...
Tags: Google, Art, Japan, Technology, College, Paris, Seoul, Arles, Van Gogh, Facebook Twitter, Vincent Van Gogh, Gogh, Auvers, Colin Marshall, Van Gogh Starry Night, 21st Century Los Angeles


An Animated Introduction to Friedrich Nietzsche’s Life & Thought

There’s no shame if you’ve never known how to pronounce Friedrich Nietzsche’s name correctly. Even less if you never remember how to spell it. If these happen to be the case, you may be less than familiar with his philosophy. Let Alain de Botton’s animated School of Life video briefly introduce you, and you’ll never forget how to say it: “Knee Cha.” (As for remembering the spelling, you’re on your own.) You’ll also get a short biography of the disgruntled, dyspeptic German philosophe...
Tags: Google, College, Nazis, Philosophy, Alain De Botton, Elizabeth, Facebook Twitter, Josh Jones, Friedrich Nietzsche, University of Basel, Nietzsche, Babich, de Botton, Durham NC Follow, Dionysus, Arthur Schopenhauer Richard


The CIA’s Rectal Tool Kit for Spies–Created for Truly Desperate Situations During The Cold War

Though global espionage remains a going concern in the 21st century, somehow the popular stories we tell about it return again and again to the Cold War. Maybe it has to do with the demand those mostly pre-digital decades made upon the physical ingenuity of spies as well as the tools of spycraft. Take, for instance, one particularly ingenious CIA-issued tool kit on display at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. "Filled with escape tools," says the Spy Museum's web site, "thi...
Tags: Google, Facebook, Technology, College, Washington, History, Britain, Cia, John Le Carre, Seoul, Facebook Twitter, International Spy Museum, Colin Marshall, 21st Century Los Angeles, Spy Museum, Atlas Obscura Related Content


Leonard Bernstein Awkwardly Turns the Screws on Tenor Jose Carreras While Recording West Side Story (1984)

What have we here? Evidence that the Maestro is a monster? Or a behind the scenes reminder that Arrested Development’s wannabe actor Tobias Fünke is not too far off base when he says that to make it in “this business of show, you have to have the heart of an angel and the hide... of an elephant.” Both? Neither? Any way you slice it, the recording session above is not for your typical cast album. West Side Story, with a book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein, and lyrics b...
Tags: Google, Music, New York, College, New York City, Theatre, Vienna, Stephen Sondheim, Broadway, Opera, Verona, Maria, Public Domain, Bernstein, Tony, Natalie Wood


Natalie Portman Teaches a MasterClass in Acting

This week, MasterClass rolled out its latest course--Natalie Portman teaching a 20-lesson class on acting. The upstart educational venture writes: One of her generation’s most versatile performers, Academy Award-winning actor Natalie Portman has been captivating audiences for decades. Since her on-screen debut at age 12, she’s worked with some of cinema’s most celebrated directors and showcased her skills through unforgettable roles in Black Swan, Jackie, and the Star Wars franchise. Hav...
Tags: Google, Film, College, Robin Williams, Bob Dylan, Online Courses, Jamie Foxx, Natalie Portman, Jackie, Facebook Twitter, Portman, Natalie, Ray Charles Natalie Portman, Jackie Kennedy Cate Blanchett, Jodie Foster Samuel L Jackson


When William Faulkner Set the World Record for Writing the Longest Sentence in Literature: Read the 1,288-Word Sentence from Absalom, Absalom!

Image by Carl Van Vechten, via Wikimedia Commons “How did Faulkner pull it off?” is a question many a fledgling writer has asked themselves while struggling through a period of apprenticeship like that novelist John Barth describes in his 1999 talk "My Faulkner." Barth “reorchestrated” his literary heroes, he says, “in search of my writerly self... downloading my innumerable predecessors as only an insatiable green apprentice can.” Surely a great many writers can relate when Barth says, “it was...
Tags: Google, Europe, Books, Maryland, Writing, College, Washington, Literature, Guinness Book of World Records, Lincoln, Sherman, Jonathan Coe, Jones, William Styron, Facebook Twitter, Beckett


Watch an Animated Score for Steve Reich’s Minimalist Piece “Clapping Music“–and Try Your Hardest to Follow Along

Steve Reich’s Clapping Music is one of the simplest scores of modern classical music, and as you might soon find out, one of the most difficult to perform. Written in 1972 while on a European tour and after a night of mediocre flamenco, Clapping Music is for two players. One claps a steady rhythm (technically an African Bell Rhythm). A second performer claps in unison in the same pattern for eight bars. At the end of the eighth bar, the second performer goes out of sync for one eighth no...
Tags: Google, Music, College, Steve Reich, Reich, Facebook Twitter, KCRW, Ted Mills, London Sinfonietta, Anne Teresa, Reed Phase, Keersmaeker Asked


When William Faulkner Set the World Record for Writing the Longest Sentence in Literature: 1,288 Words from Absalom, Absalom!

Image by Carl Van Vechten, via Wikimedia Commons “How did Faulkner pull it off?” is a question many a fledgling writer has asked themselves while struggling through a period of apprenticeship like that novelist John Barth describes in his 1999 talk "My Faulkner." Barth “reorchestrated” his literary heroes, he says, “in search of my writerly self... downloading my innumerable predecessors as only an insatiable green apprentice can.” Surely a great many writers can relate when Barth says, “it was...
Tags: Google, Europe, Books, Maryland, Writing, College, Washington, Literature, Guinness Book of World Records, Lincoln, Sherman, Jonathan Coe, Jones, William Styron, Facebook Twitter, Beckett


Jack Kerouac’s “Beat Paintings:” Now Gathered in One Book and Exhibition for the First Time

Most of us enter Jack Kerouac's world through his 1959 novel On the Road. Those of us who explore it more deeply thereafter may find much more than we expected to: Kerouac's inner life came out not just in his formidable body of written work, but in spoken-word jazz albums, fantasy baseball materials, and even paintings. Though Kerouac has now been gone for nearly half a century, it wasn't until just last year that his works of visual art were brought together: Kerouac: Beat Painting did it in ...
Tags: Google, Art, Milan, College, Literature, Road, Jack Kerouac, Kerouac, Seoul, Truman Capote, First Time, Facebook Twitter, Bandera, Colin Marshall, David Barnett, Pope Paul VI


The Band Everyone Thought Was The Beatles: Revisit the Klaatu Conspiracy of 1976

In 1976, hundreds of diehard Beatles fans became convinced that the mysterious album 3:47 EST by the band Klaatu was actually a new release from The Beatles in disguise, after a DJ in Providence, Rhode Island played one of its songs on the radio. Shortly afterward, Steve Smith discovered the album at the newspaper he worked for, Rhode Island’s The Providence Journal, listened to it, and became immediately intrigued. The album contained no photographs, no identifying information at all, a...
Tags: Google, Music, California, College, Toronto, Paul Mccartney, Smith, Steve Smith, Rhode Island, Ringo Starr, Beatles, Starr, Mccartney, Lennon, Cbc, Facebook Twitter


William Faulkner’s Review of Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea (1952)

Images via Wikimedia Commons In the mid-20th century, the two big dogs in the American literary scene were William Faulkner and Ernest Hemingway. Both were internationally revered, both were masters of the novel and the short story, and both won Nobel Prizes. Born in Mississippi, Faulkner wrote allegorical histories of the South in a style that is both elliptical and challenging. His works were marked by uses of stream-of-consciousness and shifting points of view. He also favored titanically lo...
Tags: Google, Books, Mississippi, Yahoo, College, Washington, Time, Los Angeles, New York Times, Paris, Hemingway, Ernest Hemingway, Facebook Twitter, Hollywood Reporter, Lee University, FAULKNER


Buckminster Fuller Rails Against the “Nonsense of Earning a Living”: Why Work Useless Jobs When Technology & Automation Can Let Us Live More Meaningful Lives

We are a haunted species: haunted by the specter of climate change, of economic collapse, and of automation making our lives redundant. When Marx used the specter metaphor in his manifesto, he was ironically invoking Gothic tropes. But Communism was not a boogeyman. It was a coming reality, for a time at least. Likewise, we face very real and substantial coming realities. But in far too many instances, they are also manufactured, under ideologies that insist there is no alternative. But let’s a...
Tags: Google, Art, Politics, Technology, Education, College, Economics, Creativity, Sxsw, Marx, Facebook Twitter, Josh Jones, Bill Black, Kottke, Fuller, Buckminster Fuller


An Animated Introduction to the Famous Thought Experiment, the “Trolley Problem,” Narrated by Harry Shearer

You don't have to get too deep into the study of ethics before you run across the trolley problem. It comes up so readily that it hardly needs an introduction: a runaway train is on course to collide with and kill five people working on the tracks, but you can pull a lever that will switch it to another section of track on which stands only one person. Do you pull it? According to a purely utilitarian interpretation, you should, since one life lost surely beats five lives lost. But faced...
Tags: Google, College, Animation, Philosophy, Seoul, Aristotle, Harry Shearer, Facebook Twitter, BBC Radio, Philippa Foot, Nelsen, Colin Marshall, 21st Century Los Angeles, Facebook An Animated Introduction, Eleanor Nelsen, Sartre Oxford


Discover the Great Medieval Manuscript, the Book of Kells, in a Free Online Course

Last week, we called your attention to the digitization of the Book of Kells, one of the great manuscripts from the medieval period. The digitized manuscript, we should note, comes accompanied by another great resource--a free online course on the Book of Kells. Both digital initiatives are made possible by Trinity College Dublin. The six-week course covers the following topics: Where and how the manuscript was made The social context from which the manuscript emerged, including early me...
Tags: Google, Art, Facebook, College, History, Ireland, Online Courses, Facebook Twitter, Trinity College Dublin, Kells, Bibliothèque Nationale de France


Why Should We Read Sylvia Plath? An Animated Video Makes the Case

In “Morning Song,” from Sylvia Plath’s posthumous 1965 collection Ariel, published two years after her suicide, a newborn infant is a “fat gold watch.” Among the incessant lists of adjectives in both her work, “fat” is one that stands out, appearing often, in several synonyms, as a celebration of abundance and real anxiety over weight gain and a general too-muchness. In the same poem, the baby is a work of art, a “new statue.” Its mother, on the other hand, is in one stanza a cloud effac...
Tags: Google, UK, London, College, Poetry, Literature, Time Magazine, Ariel, Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, Robert Lowell, Facebook Twitter, Hughes, Durham NC, Josh Jones, Plath


A Stunning Live Concert Film of Queen Performing in Montreal, Digitally Restored to Perfection (1981)

The legend of Queen is immortal. It needs no further burnishing, not even, some might argue, by the most recent Oscar-winning biopic. The film may gamely recreate the stagecraft of Britain’s most operatic export. But once you’ve seen the real thing, what need of a substitute? For the millions who loved them before Wayne’s World brought them back to global consciousness, and the millions who came to love them afterward, the only thing that could be better than watching live Queen is watch...
Tags: Google, Music, Usa, Film, College, George Harrison, Nasa, Britain, Bangladesh, Montreal, Brian May, Wayne, Facebook Twitter, Josh Jones, Durham NC Follow, Apple Mac G5


The Roman Roads of Spain & Portugal Visualized as a Subway Map: Ancient History Meets Modern Graphic Design

Between the first century BC and the fourth century AD, Rome displayed what we might call an impressive ambition. In his project illustrating those chapters of history in a way no one has before, statistics student Sasha Trubetskoy has shown increasingly Roman-grade ambitions himself, at least in the realm of historical graphic design. We've previously featured his modern subway-style maps of as well as  here on Open Culture. Today, we have , the region today occupied mainly by Spain and Po...
Tags: Google, Facebook, Design, College, Spain, History, Rome, Portugal, Seoul, Iberia, Facebook Twitter, Roman Empire, Colin Marshall, Antoninus, Sasha Trubetskoy, Trubetskoy


Bill Murray Explains How a 19th-Century Painting Saved His Life

You don't understand prewar 20th-century America unless you understand a particular 19th-century French painting: Jules Breton's The Song of the Lark. "In this evocative work, a young peasant woman stands silently in the flat fields of the artist's native Normandy as the sun rises, listening to the song of a distant lark," says a post from the Art Institute of Chicago. Apart from being selected as America's favorite painting in 1934, it was also Eleanor Roosevelt's favorite work of art, ...
Tags: Google, Art, Facebook, UK, College, America, Chicago, Normandy, Bill Murray, Seoul, Thompson, Murray, Eleanor Roosevelt, Facebook Twitter, Willa Cather, John Prine


The Amazing Franz Kafka Workout!: Discover the 15-Minute Exercise Routine That Swept the World in 1904

Does your spare tire show no signs of deflating as bikini season looms? Is the fear of bullies kicking sand in your face beginning to outstrip the horror of transforming into a giant bug overnight? Do you long to experience lasting health benefits along with an impressively fit appearance? Friends, we make you this promise: The Amazing Franz Kafka Workout will transform your life along with your physique in just 15 minutes a day. That's right, just 15 minutes of daily calisthenics (and some ...
Tags: Health, Google, College, New York City, Sports, Literature, Kafka, Facebook Twitter, Müller, Walt Whitman, Franz Kafka, Sarah Wildman, Ayun Halliday, Unearthed Health Manual, Jørgen Peter Müller, Franz Kafka Workout


Alan Watts Presents a 15-Minute Guided Meditation: A Time-Tested Way to Stop Thinking About Thinking

The concept of emptiness—sh?nyat?—in Mahayana Buddhism is perhaps a subject best avoided in casual conversation. It so vexes everyone not least because of issues of translation: "emptiness," many scholars think, hardly suffices as a substitute. In English it has a more distinctly nihilist flavor than was intended. Yet emptiness is so indispensable that it can hardly go unmentioned when the practice and purpose of meditation come up in Buddhist thought. Leave it to Zen to put things in su...
Tags: Google, Japan, Zen, California, College, Religion, San Francisco, Britain, Philosophy, Buddhist, Watts, Facebook Twitter, Josh Jones, Suzuki, Mahayana, Alan Watts


The Big Pond: Stream 50 Audio Stories from the Goethe-Institut, Available Free Online

  Who doesn’t love a good podcast? Don’t tell me you’ve never binged Serial or laughed out loud with Marc Maron. Over the last few years, podcasts have become a cultural phenomenon–they help us endure our daily commutes and then lull us back to sleep at night. Listening culture isn’t new, though–talk radio has been filling the silence with anecdotes, news, and drama since the early 1900s. The Goethe-Institut’s new radio and podcast series THE BIG POND. A US-German Listening Series is a perfect ...
Tags: Google, Utah, College, Washington, Germany, Berlin, John Lennon, US, United States, Npr, Goethe Institut, Facebook Twitter, Marc Maron, Big Pond, Podcast Articles and Resources, Katie Davis


Here’s John Steinbeck Asking Marilyn Monroe for Her Autograph (1955)

When asking a celebrity for a special favor, it helps to be a bit of a celebrity yourself. As Keith Ferrell details in his biography, John Steinbeck: The Voice of the Land, the Nobel laureate had little patience for autograph seekers, pushy young writers seeking help getting published, and “people who never read books but enjoyed meeting authors.” The shoe went on the other foot when Mrs. Steinbeck let slip to her nephew that Uncle John had met the boy’s movie star crush, Marilyn Monroe. Sudden...
Tags: Google, Film, College, Life, New York City, Marilyn Monroe, Literature, John F Kennedy, Letters, Public Domain, Facebook Twitter, Jon, Julien, John Steinbeck, Steinbeck, Monroe



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