Why We Love Sad Songs, Ctd

A reader writes: I have a response to two different but related items at the Dish: the recent post about why we like sad songs, and the moving, thoughtful remarks about suicide prevention from Jennifer Michael Hecht.  I want to offer up one of the most poignantly beautiful songs about suicide that I know of, Lucinda Williams’ “Sweet Old … Continue reading Why We Love Sad Songs, Ctd

“If You Don’t Kill Yourself, You’re Saving Someone Else’s Life”

Jennifer Michael Hecht, author of Stay: A History of Suicide and the Philosophies Against It, describes the contagion effect that spreads to the family, friends, and even strangers of people who kill themselves, making it more likely that they’ll follow suit: From her bio: Jennifer Michael Hecht is a poet, philosopher, historian and commentator. She is the author of the bestseller Doubt: … Continue reading “If You Don’t Kill Yourself, You’re Saving Someone Else’s Life”

A Godless President?

Isaac Chotiner suspects that America is ready for an atheist candidate: A Gallup poll from 2012 … showed that only 34 percent of Americans know Barack Obama’s religion. (Some people think he is Muslim; others are not sure.) If that’s the case—and there has been a lot of coverage of the president’s faith—isn’t it at least possible … Continue reading A Godless President?

Suicide And Secularism

Jennifer Michael Hecht, author of Stay: A History of Suicide and the Philosophies Against It, argues that in “the decades leading up to the Englightenment … open-minded questioning of religion became increasingly associated with an acceptance of suicide”: Christianity did not initially reject suicide…. In fact, Jesus’ death was understood by many as voluntary. In … Continue reading Suicide And Secularism

Where Are All The Female Atheists? Ctd

Katie Engelhart wants the New Atheists to reach out more to women: Writers have suggested that the doggedness of New Atheism tends to turn off women—and that, for social reasons, women don’t muster the same militancy when defending their (non)beliefs. Others have looked to sexism within the Atheist community (read: Elevatorgate). A few have made unconvincing … Continue reading Where Are All The Female Atheists? Ctd

Suicide Leaves Behind Nothing

Jul 17, 2013 @ 8:57am “Suicide, seen as among the most selfish of acts, pushes a button in us that even murder doesn’t,” according to Clancy Martin: When I was in treatment for depression, I found that meeting and talking to other people about suicide was profoundly helpful; I saw what a loss it would have … Continue reading Suicide Leaves Behind Nothing

Ask Anything Archive

Here are all the guests that have been featured in our Ask Anything interview series. They first appear alphabetically below, then reverse chronologically after that. Andrew’s Ask Anything answers are here. Guests: [one_half]Spencer Ackerman Reza Aslan Josh Barro Bruce Bartlett Shane Bauer Peter Beinart Jesse Bering Kate Bolick Mark Bowden Steven Brill Tina Brown Charles … Continue reading Ask Anything Archive