Bowdoin’s Purnell on Racism in Maine (Maine Public Radio)

Brian Purnell

Brian Purnell

Maine is one of the whitest states in the US, with about ninety-five percent of Mainers described as white, according to the US Census Bureau. Does this mean there is less racism in the state, or is Maine a more intolerant place because of its overwhelming “whiteness”? How prevalent is racism in American society at large?

Associate Professor of Africana Studies and History Brian Purnell was part of panel discussion about racism on the Maine Public Radio program Maine Calling.

Orientation Trips: First Years Get a Taste of Maine Before Busy Semester

orientationtrip (10)

Yesterday afternoon, several first-year students on an orientation trip walked down a dock to take a swim in Harpswell Sound. As they checked out the view, one student gushed, “Honestly, this looks like a painting! How incredible.”

Another student was a bit less impressed. “That’s a beach?” he asked, pointing to the pebbly shore strewn with seaweed. “Where’s the sand?”

“Stop dissing Maine!” chided Brittany Hernandez ’19, who is the orientation trip’s co-leader, with Natasha Alvarez ’19. Their group is focusing on environmental issues that face communities around Bowdoin.

From Wednesday to Saturday, all incoming first-year students are exploring Maine on Orientation Trips, either doing community service or outdoor activities. While most are far-flung—as far as Aroostook County and Mt. Katahdin—a few are local, either based on campus or at Bowdoin’s Coastal Studies Center on Orr’s Island. See photos of a few of the orientation trips enjoying the Coastal Studies Center.

The Mystery of Black Holes and Hawking Radiation (Nature)

outer space, galaxy, universe, While much of black holes remain a mystery, scientists have recently discovered that they might release radiation, which might cause them to shrink and disappear.

This is called Hawking radiation, which is still just a hypothesis, but recent findings could eventually prove it true. Read more about these findings at Nature

How Long Should You Make Eye Contact? (Science)

Eye256Looking someone in the eye to establish a comfortable rapport is a delicate art. To make things a bit more complicated, people prefer to lock eyes for different amounts of time. Some like to go long, others short.

However, there does seem to be a general preference. A new study finds the preferred average duration for maintaining eye contact is 3.3 seconds. See whether you prefer to go long or short on Science‘s eye-contact test.