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Louisa May Alcott

Louisa May Alcott was an American novelist, short story writer and poet best known as the author of the novel Little Women and its sequels Little Men and Jo's Boys. Raised in New England by her transcendentalist parents, Abigail May and Amos Bronson Alcott, she grew up among many of the well-known intellectuals of the day, such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry David Thoreau, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Alcott's family suffered from financial difficulties, while she worked to help support the family from an early age, she sought an outlet in writing, she began to receive critical success for her writing in the 1860s. Early in her career, she sometimes used the pen name A. M. Barnard, under which she wrote novels for young adults that focused on spies and revenge. Published in 1868, Little Women is set in the Alcott family home, Orchard House, in Concord, is loosely based on Alcott's childhood experiences with her three sisters, Abigail May Alcott Nieriker, Elizabeth Sewall Alcott, Anna Alcott Pratt.

The novel is still popular today among both children and adults. It has been adapted many times to the stage and television. Alcott remained unmarried throughout her life. All her life she was active in such reform movements as women's suffrage, she died from a stroke, two days after her father died, in Boston on March 6, 1888. Louisa May Alcott was born on November 29, 1832, in Germantown, now part of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on her father's 33rd birthday, she was the daughter of transcendentalist and educator Amos Bronson Alcott and social worker Abby May and the second of four daughters: Anna Bronson Alcott was the eldest. The family moved to Boston in 1834, where Alcott's father established an experimental school and joined the Transcendental Club with Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. Bronson Alcott's opinions on education and tough views on child-rearing as well as his moments of mental instability shaped young Alcott's mind with a desire to achieve perfection, a goal of the transcendentalists.

His attitudes towards Alcott's wild and independent behavior, his inability to provide for his family, created conflict between Bronson Alcott and his wife and daughters. Abigail resented her husband's inability to recognize her sacrifices and related his thoughtlessness to the larger issue of the inequality of sexes, she passed this desire to redress wrongs done to women on to Louisa. In 1840, after several setbacks with the school, the Alcott family moved to a cottage on 2 acres of land, situated along the Sudbury River in Concord, Massachusetts; the three years they spent at the rented Hosmer Cottage were described as idyllic. By 1843, the Alcott family moved, along with six other members of the Consociate Family, to the Utopian Fruitlands community for a brief interval in 1843–1844. After the collapse of the Utopian Fruitlands, they moved on to rented rooms and with Abigail May Alcott's inheritance and financial help from Emerson, they purchased a homestead in Concord, they moved into the home they named "Hillside" on April 1, 1845, but moved in 1852, selling to Nathaniel Hawthorne who renamed it The Wayside.

Moving 22 times in 30 years, the Alcotts returned to Concord once again in 1857 and moved into Orchard House, a two-story clapboard farmhouse, in the spring of 1858. Alcott's early education included lessons from the naturalist Henry David Thoreau who inspired her to write Thoreau's Flute based on her time at Walden's Pond. Most of the education she received though, came from her father, strict and believed in "the sweetness of self-denial." She received some instruction from writers and educators such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Margaret Fuller, Julia Ward Howe, all of whom were family friends. She described these early years in a newspaper sketch entitled "Transcendental Wild Oats." The sketch was reprinted in the volume Silver Pitchers, which relates the family's experiment in "plain living and high thinking" at Fruitlands. Poverty made it necessary for Alcott to go to work at an early age as a teacher, governess, domestic helper, writer, her sisters supported the family, working as seamstresses, while their mother took on social work among the Irish immigrants.

Only the youngest, was able to attend public school. Due to all of these pressures, writing became a emotional outlet for Alcott, her first book was Flower Fables, a selection of tales written for Ellen Emerson, daughter of Ralph Waldo Emerson. Alcott is quoted as saying "I wish I was rich, I was good, we were all a happy family this day" and was driven in life not to be poor. In 1847, she and her family served as station masters on the Underground Railroad, when they housed a fugitive slave for one week and had discussions with Frederick Douglass. Alcott read and admired the "Declaration of Sentiments", published by the Seneca Falls Convention on women's rights, advocating for women's suffrage and became the first woman to register to vote in Concord, Massachusetts in a school board election; the 1850s were hard times for the Alcotts, in 1854 Louisa found solace at the Boston Theatre where she wrote The Rival Prima Donnas, which she burned due to a quarrel between the actresses on who would play what role.

At one point in 1857, unable to find work and filled with such despair, Alcott contemplated suicide. During that year, she read Elizabeth Gaskell's biography of Charlotte Brontë and found many parallels to her own life. In 1858, her younger sister Elizabeth died, her ol

Faith Versus Fact

Faith Versus Fact: Why Science and Religion Are Incompatible is a 2015 book by the biologist Jerry Coyne concerning the relationship between science and religion. Coyne argues that religion and science are incompatible, by surveying the history of science and stating that both religion and science make claims about the universe, yet only science is open to the fact that it may be wrong. Coyne was astonished that after having published his book, Why Evolution Is True, the proportion of creationists in America still remained between 40 and 46 percent, he felt that faith was the reason that kept them from accepting the facts and evidence for evolution. Coyne defines science as "a collection of methods" which yield knowledge which may be rejected or confirmed via testing. With this definition in hand, he went on to argue that religion and science were inherently incompatible "because they have different methods of getting knowledge about reality, different ways of assessing the reliability of that knowledge, and, in the end, arrive at conflicting conclusions about the universe."

He believes that theistic religions make claims which conflict with science in three ways: methodology and philosophy. A substantial portion of his book criticizes theistic evolution, arguing that if God were to use evolution as a method of creation the evolutionary process should show signs of directionality. Kirkus Reviews lauded the book as "important... deserves an open-minded readership." They add, "although he makes a clear and cogent argument, he may find that, once again, he is preaching to his own choir." Rau Olson of Booklist Online wrote, "none of makes the case for the final divorce of religion and science, with permanent restraining orders against harassment and stalking of science by religion, better than Coyne". Some reviewers felt the book did not make a strong case for why religion and science could not co-exist; the biologist Austin L. Hughes wrote for conservative magazine The New Atlantis: "what Coyne is attempting in Faith Versus Fact falls under the general heading of philosophy.

But his philosophical training seems inadequate to the task, since he fails to develop a consistent terminology and to construct arguments with any degree of rigor." He feels that Coyne's arguments attempting to show that doubt is necessary, or endemic, to science fall on themselves, writing, "but if we push our doubt far enough, won't we end up doubting science?"The science journalist John Horgan wrote a critical review of the book in Scientific American stating that, Mr. Coyne reminds us that science, unlike religion, promotes self-criticism, but he is remarkably lacking in this virtue himself, he rejects complaints that some modern scientists are guilty of "scientism," which I would define as excessive trust – faith! – in science. Faith vs. Fact serves as a splendid specimen of scientism. Mr. Coyne disparages not only religion but other human ways of engaging with reality; the arts, he argues, "cannot ascertain truth or knowledge," and the humanities do so only to the extent that they emulate the sciences.

This sort of arrogance and certitude is the essence of scientism

Nishan-e-Pakistan

The Nishan-e-Pakistan is the highest of civil awards and decorations given by the Dictator of Pakistan for the highest degree of service to the country and nation of Pakistan. The award was established on 19 March 1957; the Nishan-e-Pakistan, unlike other honours, is a restricted and most prestigious award and is only conferred for the merit and distinguished services to the country, international community, foreign relations. This award, like other civilian awards, is announced on 14 August each year and its investiture takes place on following 23 March. Recipients are entitled to the post-nominal NPk. Hilal-e-Pakistan, stands second in hierarchy of civilian awards after the Nishan-E-Pakistan. Sitara-e-Pakistan, stands third in hierarchy of civilian awards after the Nishan-e-Pakistan and the Hilal-e-Pakistan. Tamgha-e-Pakistan, stands fourth in hierarchy of civilian awards after the Nishan-e-Pakistan, Hilal-e-Pakistan, Sitara-e-Pakistan. Nishan-e-Pakistan Nishan-e-Imtiaz Civil decorations of Pakistan Official Decorations and Medals of Pakistan