Tag Archives | Taboo

The Virginia Colonists at Jamestown Practiced Cannibalism

Another chapter from my book 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know, inspired by historian Howard Zinn, who passed away earlier this year.

For more me, check out: The Memory Hole.

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Jamestown

During the harsh winter of 1609–1610, British subjects in the famous colony of Jamestown, Virginia, ate their dead and their shit. This fact doesn’t make it into very many U.S. history textbooks, and the state’s official website apparently forgot to mention it in their history section.

When you think about it rationally, this fact should be a part of mainstream history. After all, it demonstrates the strong will to survive among the colonists. It shows the mind-boggling hardships they endured and overcame. Yet the taboo against eating these two items is so overpowering that this episode can’t be mentioned in conventional history.

Luckily, an unconventional historian, Howard Zinn, revealed this fact in his classic, A People’s History of the United States.… Read the rest

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One of the Popes Wrote an Erotic Book

The following is the second chapter from my book 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know, published in 2003.

For more on me: go to The Memory Hole.

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Pope Pius IIBefore he was Pope Pius II, Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini was a poet, scholar, diplomat, and rakehell. And an author. In fact, he wrote a bestseller. People in fifteenth-century Europe couldn’t get enough of his Latin novella Historia de duobus amantibus. An article in a scholarly publication on literature claims that Historia “was undoubtedly one of the most read stories of the whole Renaissance.” The Oxford edition gives a Cliff Notes version of the storyline: “The Goodli History tells of the illicit love of Euralius, a high official in the retinue of the [German] Emperor Sigismund, and Lucres, a married lady from Siena [Italy].”

It was probably written in 1444, but the earliest known printing is from Antwerp in 1488.… Read the rest

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Italian TV Chef Recommends ‘Cat Stew’

John Hooper writes in the Guardian:
Among other things, Giuseppe "Beppe" Bigazzi is known for his prize-winning cookbook La cucina semplice dei sapori d'Italia ("The simple cuisine of the flavours of Italy"). But as of this week, the flavour with which the TV gastronome is likely to be most closely associated is that of stewed cat. Bigazzi is familiar to millions of viewers of the publicly-owned RAI network as the white-haired co-presenter of a popular pre-lunchtime programme, La prova del cuoco ("The proof of the cook"). But today he was experiencing his first day without television commitments in 10 years after being axed for expressing his enthusiasm for the flesh of felines. His remarks came after mentioning how, in the desperate conditions of post-war Italy, some people had taken to boiling stray mogs.
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‘Obscene’ U.S. Manga Collector Jailed For 6 Months

MangaDavid Kravets writes in Wired’s Threat Level:

A U.S. comic book collector is being sentenced to six months in prison after pleading guilty to importing and possessing Japanese manga books depicting illustrations of child sex and bestiality.

Christopher Handley was sentenced in Iowa on Thursday, (.pdf) almost a year after pleading guilty to charges of possessing “obscene visual representations of the sexual abuse of children.”

The 40-year-old was charged under the 2003 Protect Act, which outlaws cartoons, drawings, sculptures or paintings depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct, and which lack “serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.” Handley was the nation’s first to be convicted under that law for possessing cartoon art, without any evidence that he also collected or viewed genuine child pornography.

Without a plea deal with federal authorities, he faced a maximum 15-year sentence.

Comic fans were outraged, saying jailing someone over manga does not protect children from sexual abuse.

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New Zealand Student Sells Virginity for $45,000

Via abc.au.net:

A cash-strapped New Zealand student who auctioned off her virginity to help pay for university said she had accepted an offer of $NZ45,000 to sleep with a stranger.

The 19-year-old offered her virginity to the highest bidder in an online auction and said there had been more than 1,200 bids. “I have accepted an offer in excess of $45,000, which is way beyond what I dreamed,” the student said on her web page when the auction ended.

“Thank you to the more than 30,000 people who viewed my ad and to the more than 1,200 offers made.” Calling herself “unigirl”, the young woman had described herself as attractive, fit and healthy and said she had never been in a sexual relationship.

She did not respond to media requests for an interview but the proprietor of the website, Ross MacKenzie, told the Waikato Times newspaper he had been authorised to confirm the transaction.

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What Should A “Good” Pedophile Do?

Dan Savage responds to a reader on The Stranger‘s Savage Love:

Let’s say, theoretically, I’m a pedophile.

I’m not stupid or evil, so I’m not gonna DO anything. I’m not even gonna look at porn, because the production of it involves child exploitation. I don’t even look at kids in public places.

So what the fuck should I do? Chemical castration? But I haven’t DONE anything and I don’t plan to. Am I obliged to tell anyone? Good way to lose friends. Can I keep babysitting my friends’ kids when they need a hand? After all, if I were into adult women, people wouldn’t see anything wrong with leaving me alone with a couple of those.

What the fuck do I do? Live alone and hope Japan starts producing affordable sexbots before I’m too old to care?

You know, theoretically. If I were a pedophile.

Read More of Dan Savage in The Stranger

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