June 21 in freethought history…

northernlights

June 21, 1905 – Existentialist philosopher Jean-Paul Satre is born in Paris.

June 21, 1986 – First observance of World Humanist Day. Although WHD has yet to catch on, it is intended as “an opportunity for humanists and humanist organizations to publicize the positive values of Humanism and to share the global concerns of the Humanist movement.”

June 21, 2007Philip Pullman‘s fantasy novel Northern Lights (published in the US as The Golden Compass) wins the Carnegie of Carnegies, celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Carnegie Medal for children’s books published in the UK. Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy (Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife, The Amber Spyglass) has won numerous awards, and has been adapted for radio, theatre and film. The trilogy has been the source of controversy due to its critical treatment of religious authority and heretical depiction of angelic beings and even God.

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