Topic: Religion and Culture

Mizzou Advantage Writing Contest: 2nd Place

Christmas Holiday: Queering Family in 20th Century Southern Missouri

Kelsey Rogers

An obituary in The Southeast Missourian lists Elaine “Tommie” Davis as the business partner of Mary Jane “Miss Jane” Barnett for over forty years (Elaine Davis Obituary). However, the family albums of the two tell a richer story, they were life partners as well as business partners, a radical act in mid-century America, and perhaps […]

The Concept of Death in Early African Societies

Alex Daniel

All cultures of the world find explanations for death and the afterlife. In the Christian faith, when believers of Jesus Christ and his Holy Father perish, they will have everlasting life in Heaven. In the Hindu faith, it is believed that when one dies, he or she will resurrect into a new form.

Giving Voice to Violence and Void

Nathaniel McKee (First Winner)

Irish-American masculine identity has a nebulous and bloody history. Its development began in the 1840s in Ireland and has its roots in colonialism – a story that, in itself, could fill a book-shelf. Despite this challenge, Martin Scorsese does an admirable job of exploring this dynamic in his film The Departed.

Classic Hollywood Cinema as Propaganda

Anne Mauldin

Photography was the first use of pictorial proof as documentation of scientific analysis starting in the late 1800s. There was a sudden trust from viewers when they were presented with an image of presumed objective nature, emphasizing the ideology of “I’ll believe it when I see it.”​

Twins in West African Culture and Society of the Iron Age

James Adewumi

Twins had unique roles in many West African cultures in the Iron Age, a period in spanning from the first millennium to the 19th century. The Igbo speaking-people of southeast Nigeria, for example, feared the birth of twins.

In the Water, Everyone is Equal

Anders Melin

The conflict has been raging for over half a century. Israel and Palestine are like two brothers; brothers that are sprung out of the same core and host religions and nations that share the same origins. But in spite of these commonalities, the dispute is still ongoing, with no promise of a near-end resolve.

Holding hands in marriage

The Gate to Marriage: Benefits and Detriments of Arranged Marriage

Yu Ji

The processes of choosing a lifetime partner dramatically differ between Western and Eastern cultures. In Western cultures, mates select one another directly based on interpersonal attraction. Since marriage is not the primary task of starting a relationship, family members are not likely to get involved when a person is starting a relationship. In the Eastern cultures, however, marriage is regarded as the primary pre-requisite for a relationship and it is often arranged by family members.

Engaging the Western World: Engaged Buddhism in America

Sam Urkov

The role of Buddhism in America is evolving towards being more visible and pertinent in modern times. In an age where life is becoming ever more demanding, individuals are taught that they are distinct, unique, and independent; they are told that they are separate from the rest of humanity and somehow not one with the rest of nature.