Amazing Stories for Curious Minds

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Latest Stories by Alex Scholes

A portrait of Rosie the Riveter laughing. (©)

A Riveting Tale: Rosie The Riveter, a Cultural Icon

In 1942, a now-classic image of a young woman in a red-and-white polka dot bandana appeared on a U.S. government-issued war poster. And thus Rosie the Riveter was born, an icon of the American can-do spirit and a persevering symbol of feminism, representing the millions of women who took on jobs typically held by men while the men were off fighting the war.


A rear view of Charles II of Spain standing in his armor on the streets of Madrid. (© Odd Feed)

King Charles II of Spain, Bewitched and Misunderstood

He was an able diplomat who successfully managed to ward off several deadly diseases and hold a vast empire in decline; yet, he’s mainly remembered today as the frail king with the Habsburg jaw, the final offspring of centuries of aristocratic inbreeding. It’s time to reappraise the legacy of King Charles II, the last Habsburg ruler of the Spanish Empire.


Limpieza de Sangre: Full-blooded Racism

Originating in 15th-century Spain, limpieza de sangre was a racist legal concept and a complex caste system developed as a way to discriminate between the Old Catholics and the newer Christian converts of known or presumed Jewish or Muslim heritage (conversos and Moriscos).


In 1918, Austrian artist Oskar Kokoschka commissioned a life-sized sex doll of his former lover, Alma Mahler (widow of composer Gustav Mahler and then-wife of architect Walter Gropius). He dressed it in custom-made clothes and took it with him on trips, to cafés, and to the theater. He destroyed it publicly several years later, claiming it had “cured him of his passions." 

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