The lingam is a Hindu symbol of the god Shiva and of generative power. Fashioned from wood, gems, metal, or stone, lingams are common in family shrines throughout India. Historically, the lingam was a representation of the phallus, and a sexual dimension is apparent today as the yoni—symbol of the female sex organ—often forms the base of the lingam to emphasize the male and female aspects of existence. What did British missionary William Ward say about lingams in his 1815 book?
Miguel de Cervantes
Back in the day
Following Japan's defeat in World War II, Taiwan was placed under the administrative control of the Republic of China. The transition did not go smoothly. The Taiwanese had been content under Japanese rule and quickly grew to resent the heavy-handed tactics of the Kuomintang. On February 27, 1947, a dispute between a cigarette vendor and authorities escalated the next day into an anti-government uprising that was violently suppressed. How many Taiwanese are thought to have been massacred?
Born on a day like today
The youngest child of Joseph Stalin, and his only daughter, Svetlana Alliluyeva caused a furor when she defected to the West in the 1960s, leaving behind her two grown children in the process. After becoming a naturalized US citizen, she published two successful memoirs, married, took the name Lana Peters, had a daughter, and divorced. In 1984, she returned to the USSR and renounced her defection, but her resolve soon wavered. How long was it before she left again for the West?