Articles on Evil

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A man adds his comments to a spontaneous memorial of flowers and sidewalk writing that has appeared a block from the Tree of Life Synagogue on Monday, Oct. 29. A gunman shot a killed 11 people while they worshipped at the synagogue the Saturday before. Gene J. Puskar/AP Photo

Educators must challenge the politics of evil

To grasp how extraordinary evils are often committed by ordinary people, we need to consider how we define evil, and most importantly, whom we consider to be the agents of evil.
Mosaics by artist Chuck Close on the walls of the new 86th Street subway station on the Second Avenue line in New York. AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File

#MeToo in the art world: Genius should not excuse sexual harassment

In his short play from 1830, 'Mozart and Salieri,' Russian poet Alexander Pushkin proposed that genius and evil are incompatible. Here's why this argument is worth revisiting in light of #MeToo.
A statue of John A. Macdonald is shown covered in red paint in Montreal in November 2017. Canada’s first Prime MInister, he has been criticized for his treatment of Indigenous peoples and attitudes towards those of Chinese origin. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes)

Why history education is central to the survival of democracy

In a time of populism and political polarization, children and young adults need to learn to think critically, with complexity and nuance. History, as a subject, is more important than ever.
Hear no evil? Many politicians have labelled Islamic State ‘evil’, but what does that really mean? See-no-hear-no-speak-no-evil monkeys/Shuttterstock

Unique evil, death cults and War on Terror: do these labels help?

Our time, this decade even, has shown us that man’s capacity for evil knows no limits. – Then United Nations’ Secretary-General Kofi Annan, 1997 Over the past few weeks leading up to the US-led bombing…
The idea may seem ‘old-fashioned’, says Pope Francis, ‘But look out because the devil is present! The devil is here … even in the 21st century!’ EPA/Maurizio Brambatti

What is Pope Francis on about with all this talk of Satan and evil?

Pope Francis’ discussion of the devil (or Satan) has been greeted with surprise by many. Why would a “progressive” Pope speak about an “old-school”, passé topic like the devil? Has not the Catholic Church…
Plenty of extreme wrongs are performed by comparatively ordinary people. Danny O'Connor

Does evil exist and, if so, are some people just plain evil?

You would have to be naïve to believe that evil exists, right? If you were asked to come up with examples of evil villains, you might think of the Emperor from Star Wars, Lord Voldemort from Harry Potter…

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