This 8,000 year-old giraffe rock carving in DaBous, Niger is considered one of the finest petroglyphs in the world. The giraffe has a leash on its nose implying some level of taming the animals. It was found relatively recently on the top of a granite hill by local Touaregs and dates to the Kiffian era of 7,000 - 9,000 years ago.


Before Schimmel: The Indian Women Who Became Basketball Champions

Tip-off to basketball season is right around the corner. Shoni and Jude Schimmel are back at the University of Louisville, poised for another run at the national championships. Two years ago, Tahnee Robinson became the first Native American woman to be drafted by the WNBA and last spring, Angel Goodrich became the second. Indian girls are playing at many schools across the country and basketball reigns supreme throughout Indian country. But Indian women and basketball are not as new as many think. In 1904 the women’s basketball team at Fort Shaw Indian Boarding School in Montana were world champions.

…The young women on the Fort Shaw team came from seven tribes throughout Montana and Idaho. Some of the girls had played shinny or double ball, but had likely never played this new sport. Their first game was against a high school boy’s team in Great Falls. The young ladies rode 40 miles in horse drawn wagons to play that game, winning and actually doubling the score of the boy’s team. That was just the beginning. They beat the men’s teams at the University of Montana and Montana State by scores of 25-1 and 22-0. At halftime they entertained with songs on the mandolin and violin, recited poetry, sang and did Native dances. Teams didn’t want to play them.

The 1904 World’s Fair was held in St. Louis, Missouri. Fort Shaw Indian School Superintendent Fred C. Campbell arranged for the team and other Fort Shaw students to attend and live in tipis at the Indian Exhibit. They performed dozens of times showing their basketball talent as well as musical talents to raise money for the trip.

Missouri had put together an all-star team—their coach studied Fort Shaw and spent the summer preparing for them. They thought they were ready. It was a best of three series. The score in the first game was 24-2 in favor of Fort Shaw. Missouri requested a several week delay before the second game—the final score of which was 17-6, again in favor of Fort Shaw. They were declared world champions.

Archaeological News: Oops! Etruscan Warrior Prince Really a Princess →




Last month, archaeologists announced a stunning find: a completely sealed tomb cut into the rock in Tuscany, Italy.

The untouched tomb held what looked like the body of an Etruscan prince holding a spear, along with the ashes of his wife. Several news outlets reported on the discovery of the…

Instead of using objects found in a grave to interpret the sites, archaeologists should first rely on bone analysis or other sophisticated techniques before rushing to conclusions, Weingarten said.

“Until very recently, and sadly still in some countries, sex determination is based on grave goods. And that, in turn, is based almost entirely on our preconceptions. A clear illustration is jewelry: We associate jewelry with women, but that is nonsense in much of the ancient world,” Weingarten said. “Guys liked bling, too.”



Today marks the fifth annual Ada Lovelace Day. Lovelace (1815-1852) is responsible for writing the first EVER computer program. Her friend Charles Babbage asked for her notes on his Analytical Engine and Lovelace went further to include the first ever algorithm written for a machine. A pioneer for women and engineers alike, join us in celebrating Ada Lovelace Day! 

Want to do more to honor this amazing woman? Join Brown University and Wikipedia’s Edit-a-thon (today Oct 15th from 3pm - 8:30pm E.T.) to celebrate other female pioneers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics:

Happy Ada Lovelace Day! Thank you, Ada, from all of us at IBM and the countless number of women in technology for whom you blazed a trail.

"Women have historically critiqued and challenged their subordinate role. In 248 ce, a Vietnamese peasant woman, Trieu Thi Trinh, told her brother that: “My wish is to ride the tempest, tame the waves, kill the sharks. I want to drive the enemy away to save our people. I will not resign myself to the usual lot of women who bow their heads and become concubines”. Women also challenged the male claim to religious authority and power. A’ishah, Muhammad’s third wife, for example, battled a Khalife in 656, and afterwards created her own religious laws. In eighth-century India, women involved in the bhakti (a popular revolt against a form of Hinduism) broke with their families, created their own spiritual writings, and demanded that men treat them as spiritual equals. European women preachers and heretics claimed direct connection with God thus creating religious and feminist impulses. Guillemine of Bohemia, a late-thirteenth-century preacher and mystic, challenged Catholic dogma, and created a women’s church that attracted aristocratic as well as ordinary women."

Barbara Winslow, Feminist Movements: Gender and Sexual Equality

(via howtotalktogirlsdialectically)

The next time someone tells me that you can’t have feminism in historical settings I’m going to print out 1,000 copies of this post, bind the paper, and throw it at them.

(via knitmeapony)

 “My wish is to ride the tempest, tame the waves, kill the sharks. I want to drive the enemy away to save our people.” HOLY SHIT.

(via hellotailor)

"Michelle Obama is capturing a particular (though arguably narrow) definition of femininity that is often denied to black women. For example, she chose President Thomas Jefferson’s portrait as the backdrop for her official White House photo. There she is, the first black, First Lady, in a sleeveless dress, and behind her is Thomas Jefferson, who raped a teenage bondswoman, Sally Hemings (the half-sister of his wife), and enslaved his own children. Michelle’s photo executes a self-conscious taunting that reaches across the span of history to repudiate the violence and brutality suffered by so many enslaved women. Michelle stands boldly in a White House where she is mistress, not slave. Her body is for her. She is not reduced to a mule or a breeder. Her children belong to her, and she is free to love and protect them. It is an act of resistance for a black woman to demand that her body belong to herself for her pleasure, her adornment, even her vanity, because in the United States, black women’s bodies have often been valued only to the extent that they produce wealth and pleasure for others. When Michelle insists on audacious, sleeveless femininity, she strikes back against the reduction of black women to hypersexual breeders or asexual laborers. Hers is an important departure from the dissemblance strategies of twentieth-century club women who sought to prove their respectability through prim sexual ethics. Michelle refuses to be ashamed of her distinctive black woman’s body and all the attributes and anxieties it evokes. Rather than shrouding herself in shame, she shows her body with surprising, self-confident ease."

Michelle Harris-Perry, Sister Citizen (via brutereason)

now in love with this 

(via paelmoon)

She standing there like, “Get yo’ ass in the back, TJ!”

(via eshusplayground)

The most impressive naval career of all the female sailors is that of William Brown, a black woman who spent at least twelve years on British warships, much of this time in the extremely demanding role of captain of the foretop. A good description of her appeared in London’s Annual Register in September 1815: “She is a smart, well-formed figure, about five feet four inches in height, possessed of considerable strength and great activity; her features are rather handsome for a black, and she appears to be about twenty-six years of age.” The article also noted that “in her manner she exhibits all the traits of a British tar and takes her grog with her late messmates with the greatest gaiety.”

Brown was a married woman and had joined the navy around 1804 following a quarrel with her husband. For several years she served on the Queen Charlotte, a three-decker with 104 guns and one of the largest ships in the Royal Navy. Brown must have had nerve, strength, and unusual ability to have been made captain of the foretop on such a ship….The captain of the foretop had to lead a team of seamen up the shrouds of the foremast, and then up the shrouds of the fore-topmast and out along the yards a hundred feet or more above the deck….

At some point in 1815, it was discovered that Brown was a woman and her story was published in the papers, but this does not seem to have affected her naval career….What is certain is that Brown returned to the Queen Charlotte and rejoined the crew.

- David Cordingly, Seafaring Women (via queencardigan)







do people realize if they included poc in frozen, they would most likely have to be slaves

it’s the same issue with brave, it’s not historically accurate sorry

yes, but this argument isn’t a very good one, because last i checked there weren’t talking bears or snowmen in history either….

i’m gonna assume that op thinks “poc” automatically equals “black people”

and even ignoring that fault in logic they seem to think every black person that existed before the 20th century was a slave and that’s sad on so many levels


  • slavery was abolished in Scandinava in the viking age
  • There are Asian y-dna haplogroups carried by a minority of ethnic Swedes that indicate that Asian people with y-chromosomes settled in the region in the migration period and were prolific enough for unbroken y-chromosomal lineages from them to survive to this day
  • there was a fucking jade buddha found in a migration period site in Scandinavia
  • also there are grave sites in eastern Viking Age Sweden showing women (or transfeminine people potentially because there are indeed cases of male skeletons from the viking age buried with feminine grave goods and i think also vice versa) wearing necklaces of green beads which are apparently a fashion adopted from asian people
  • also there are the native Saami population of northern Sweden who have lived there since before Scandinavians settled there and on which the clothes of the dude Sven are clearly based
  • in viking age treasure stashes you will see a LOT of obviously Arabic silver coins (it has arabic writing on it) indicating active trade with the Middle East
  • Ibn Fadlan, a muslim Arab, wrote about Rus traders visiting in Constantinople, he actually spend some time living with Scandinavians settled in continental Europe as Rus and wrote a book about it and it’s an important literary source on the viking age
  • They were not recently Scandinavian but ultimately originate from there, but the Vandals actually invaded North Africa and established a kingdom there in the late 5th century, and there is no reason why the native Amazigh peoples and the Vandals could not have interacted in practice even if the Vandal rulers ideologically isolated themselves as an elite. The kingdom was later destroyed by Amazigh and invading Arabs and the Vandals themselves sort of dispersed.
  • I know less about this but there have been massive waves of Jewish (obviously ultimately from the middle east) and Romani migrations (from the Indian subcontinent) into Europe since at most the 8th century, though I have no knowledge of the nature of Jewish and Romani migrations into Scandinavia specifically

My point being is that if there was nothing stopping poc from interacting with, travelling to or even living in Scandinavia in the migration period and viking age without them necessarily being slaves, then there’s nothing stopping poc from interacting with, travelling to or living in Scandinavia in later periods.

also check out it is a gr9 blog

historically accurate

Nothing says “historically accurate” like talking snowmen

thank you Scandinavian history person



british things, our british things

I thought that there were many

british things, our british things

it seems there’s hardly any

horrible histories was an AWESOME show

As one of my history teachers said “The British went and took over the world, because all they have is sheep.”


friends, to my shame and regret, it appears that a serious person has written a serious article about the gay decoy sailors of popular text post fame

said article can be perused here on jstor and includes not only great details about future president franklin d. roosevelt accidentally arresting gay clergymen, but also damn good descriptions of the queer scene in rhode island in the early 20th century

with a fuckload of trepidation i am highly recommending it to all of you, because it’s really good information to know not only because it’s kind of hilarious but also because there isn’t nearly enough acknowledgement or discussion of pre-stonewall queerness in the world

and also because i feel like it’s kind of my responsibility to spread as much information about gay sailors as possible, enjoy

Hawaii Is Riding the Wave Towards Sovereignty →


According to political scientist Dr. Keanu Sai, actions are slowly underway that will disassemble its illegal relationship with the United States, established when the U.S. named Hawai‘i a state on August 21, 1959. Sai and many others are leading the movement for the return of the Hawaiian Kingdom, supported by International Law.

Courses on Hawaii’s history as a kidnapped sovereign state are now mandatory at the University of Hawai‘i. Foreign nationals such as China are being advised that paying U.S. tariffs are illegal and they can demand that money back. Residents of Hawai‘i are learning they are obligated to follow Hawaiian Kingdom law and not U.S. law or taxes…Attorney Dexter Kaiama has been presenting evidence that the State of Hawai‘i courts are illegal. He has filed war crime complaints with the International Criminal Court, the United Nations Human Rights Council, and most recently, with the Philippine government on behalf of a Filipino citizen. If the Philippine government reacts, it will be one more step towards regained sovereignty.

…Even before 1800, Hawai‘i was a well-known monarchy and a popular stopping place for international traders, and by 1843, the Kingdom of Hawai‘i was recognized as a sovereign state with over 90 embassies and consulates throughout the world including Great Britain, France and the United States. Iolani Palace in Hawai‘i even had electricity and phone service before the White House in Washington, D.C.

Treason was punishable by death, and “to avoid any collision between armed forces and loss of life,” Queen Lili‘uokalani yielded her authority to the U.S. government to “undo the actions of its representative and reinstate me in the authority which I claim as the constitutional sovereign of the Hawaiian Islands.”In 1893, Chief of Police Charles Wilson became concerned that treasonous insurgents were planning to overthrow Queen Lili‘uokalani, and he initiated an investigation. Among other Americans, Sanford Dole, of Dole fruit, was investigated but none were charged when the American military landed just before their arrest.

But President William Harrison, anxious to grab Hawai‘i as a protective military base for the West Coast, did not reinstate her powers. Instead, American insurgent Lorrin Thurston, who would have been tried for treason in Hawai‘i, returned to Washington and introduced a treaty of cession, calling Lili‘uokalani a tyrant queen and demanding that the Hawaiian Islands be annexed. In the nick of time, Harrison was replaced by President Grover Cleveland, who knew the Queen and responded to her protests. His investigation concluded that International Laws had been violated by the U.S. Ambassador and the troops. After negotiations with the Queen, an agreement to restore the Hawaiian government was concluded December 18, 1893.

All should have been well, but Congress refused to authorize the agreement. The insurgents hired American mercenaries, and the islands were besieged with civil unrest. When President Cleveland was replaced by President William McKinley, the move was on once again to seize Hawai‘i. McKinley illegally ignored the agreements between the Queen and Cleveland, and in 1897 McKinley signed a Treaty of Cession with the insurgents. But, according to Sai and the law, “congressional laws have no force beyond U.S. territory.”

Because the Queen and islanders filed protests with the U.S. State Department, the Senate did not ratify the treaty. But at the start of the Spanish-American War on May 4, 1898, Congressman Francis Newlands introduced a joint resolution to annex the Hawaiian Islands, citing the importance of the U.S. occupation of Guam and the Philippines. The U.S. could not legally enforce congressional law on a foreign country, and Congressman Thomas H. Ball called the annexation “unconstitutional, unnecessary, and unwise.” Yet, McKinley signed the joint resolution into law on July 7, 1898, and Hawai‘i was occupied on August 12, 1898. Congress later passed another law creating a civilian government in 1900, and in 1959 Congress created the State of Hawaii.

In other words, the U.S. simply took Hawai‘i, and through a process of propaganda and public education, led the islanders, over time, to accept the statehood. “Imagine being kidnapped and told you were adopted, then finding out there are no adoption papers,” Sai said. “There is no treaty.” And without a treaty, there is no State of Hawaii.



Real life “Rosie the Riveter” - Tennessee, 1943.

From the Library of Congress collection, 1930’s-1940’s in Color




But despite Hollywood’s near-complete refusal to acknowledge it, ancient Rome was the original melting pot. See, back then, color and prejudice weren’t linked — unlike racism and stupidity today. Rome even had at least two African emperors, Severus and Macrinus. Rome was unique in the ancient world for its inclusive citizenship. In the past, a city-state like Sparta might have conquered a people and enslaved or slaughtered them all. Rome, on the other hand, blew ancient people’s minds by assimilating or even naturalizing the conquered. The ancient Romans didn’t even force conquered peoples to give up their own languages or customs.

The important thing for the Romans was that people followed the law, paid taxes, and, oh yeah, fought in the Roman army. The Romans were no dummies: Little old Rome was never going to be able to populate the world it conquered, let alone defend it, so absorbing other peoples like a giant legionary sponge was the only way to keep enough bodies in the military and on its farms. Rome enrolled northwest Africans, Moors, Gauls, Celts, Jews — pretty much anyone who could swing a sword or throw a spear — which is how an Ethiopian soldier could find himself fighting in Britain (maybe that’s why every film Roman speaks with a British accent).

There are no exact numbers on ancient Roman diversity, but given Rome’s constant contact with Africa and the Near East, the coliseum we asked you to imagine earlier should look more like Ellis Island and less like a Dave Matthews Band concert.




“I have love in me the likes of which you can scarcely imagine and rage the likes of which you would not believe. If I cannot satisfy the one, I will indulge the other.”

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein. (via riverran)

#mary shelley #this quote though #it’s all kinds of wonderful #hey remember that time one asswipe was like you have 30 seconds to name something invented by a woman… #…and Mary was like SCIENCE FICTION MOTHERFUCKERS #that was awesome #thanks Mary Shelley (via snappily)

And the next time someone starts claiming that teenage girls have ruined the horror genre with romance or whatever you can be like, hey dicksmack, teenage girls and romance built your genre so sit the fuck down.

(via sharpestrose)

Frankenstein is my favorite book.

(via saiyangirlie)

the tags.

(via florafaunamerryweather)

Actually, the first science fiction story was written by a different woman: Margaret EFFING Cavendish.


I mean, props to Mary Shelley, she’s probably been more influential, but you have to give credit where it’s due. Written in 1666, and republished in 1668 alongside her Observations upon Experimental Philosophy, (AKA science before people really used the word ‘science’),The Blazing World was inspired by a visit to the Royal Society (she was the very first woman to do so). She looked down a microscope and it blew her mind to the possibilities of different forms of life.

The Blazing World is about a woman who journey’s to a parallel world before we had a vocabulary for talking about parallel worlds, and before we had even imagined space travel. This ‘twin’ of the Earth was connected at the North Pole. Cavendish’s heroine’s ship is caught in a storm, driven off course, and washed up on this new world. There she encounters strange and wonderful people (before anyone else envisioned aliens) who elect this strange woman to be their Empress and present to her many scientific marvels (including a submarine). Cavendish uses this set up to satirise her own society and explore a world where a woman was allowed power far beyond what Cavendish herself could hope to attain (even as a Duchess with an unusually permissive husband and rare education).

So, like I say, props to Mary Shelley and all, but let’s not obscure the achievements of one woman with those of another. Margaret Cavendish invented science fiction, parallel worlds, travel to other (physical) worlds, aliens, the concept of submarines, and more. Let’s celebrate them both.

indigenous american technology



I would make an actual blog post about this but I’m too lazy

but basically

people who are like “native americans didn’t develop technology that contributed to the world”

like, I don’t think people fully understand, those awesome foods and plants you guys found on these continents? yeah they weren’t just laying around, people had to develop them. they had to carefully over generations turn that weird little teosinte into the delicious and edible maize. 

indigenous americans were so fricken awesome we invented corn, pumpkins, beans, chili peppers, chocolate, tomatoes, potatoes, vanilla, cotton, tobacco, rubber, and a bunch of other stuff. I N V E N T E D

people think indigenous americans were lacking technology because they think technology only means dead things made out of wood and plastic and stone. when we actually have been specializing in the technology of life all along

Hey remember that one time tens of thousands of colonists died needlessly of pellagra because they didn’t believe in NDN technology?