Popular Baby Names Reveal Popular Culture

Genealogists can learn quite a bit from the first names of their ancestors. Sometimes, a first name can give you clues about the heritage of an ancestor. There are many families who have certain names that are handed down from one generation to another one. Often, though, parents are inspired by the popular culture when they name their babies. A first name can give a glimpse into what your ancestor’s social world was like. There is now a list of the most popular baby names for 2010, for both boys and girls, which comes from data compiled by the Social … Continue reading

Book Review: Orientals: Asian Americans in Popular Culture

My last blog wondered about the impact of anti-immigrant feelings, worsened by economic conditions, on international adoptees and their families. In that blog, I quoted from the book Orientals: Asian Americans in Popular Culture. This blog will be a further review of that book. The first thing I should note is, as I said last time, that the word “Orientals” is deliberately used by the author to demonstrate negative stereotypes of Asians as too irreconcilably different by nature to ever fit into American society. Do not use the word “oriental” when referring to people today. Use Asian-American if you need … Continue reading

Losing My Grip on Popular Culture

I am gradually becoming un-cool. Okay, maybe it has been happening for a long time but I’m only just starting to notice. I can now walk by a magazine geared toward the “youth” market–laying conspicuously on my coffee table with all its glitz and flash and glare–and have no idea who the person is on the cover. Not only that, I don’t recognize any name or face from within the pages either. (the fashions, I recognize, but that’s because I remember them from the LAST time around.) I hear songs coming out of every corner of my house and have … Continue reading

How To Become A Part Of Popular Culture

You’ve seen them posted all over the Internet… home videos of stupid pet (and human) tricks, weird stunts, and bloopers. But, have you ever wondered how each video makes it online and how much (if any) money was exchanged for the post? Popular culture wouldn’t be what it is today without someone uploading video of what happens when you combine Mentos and Diet Coke or what happens when you stuff your mouth full of live praying mantises. Online videos are fun to watch, and in some cases even more fun to post… and yes, those weird stunts captured on camera … Continue reading

Mango—Popular In Many Cultures

I grew up in Hawaii where mangoes are so plentiful you could be standing at a bus stop and actually reach up and grab a few to take on your ride. Mango is a fruit that is not only popular in Hawaii, but also in Mexico, the Caribbean, Africa, South-East Asia, Australia, and right here in the continental U.S. (especially in Florida, New Mexico and California). We could all benefit from a little multicultural thinking, so here are some mango recipes that are culled from different regions around the world. The recipes are simple and… simply delicious. Salad of the … Continue reading

The Most Popular Baby Names of 2012

Parents spend a great deal of time and a lot of effort when considering a name for their child. It could be a family name. Or, the choice of name might be influenced by popular culture. Baby Center has revealed the list of the most popular baby names in 2012. Every year, BabyCenter.com puts together an interesting list of the top 100 names for baby girls, and for baby boys, in a given year. They just released their Top 100 list for 2012. There are some differences between the list of 2012 and the previous list of the most popular … Continue reading

Madison is More Popular Than Betty

What’s in a name? More than you might think! Genealogists at FindMyPast have reviewed data about names that were taken from the U.S. Social Security Administration and compared the popularity of names from 1940 to the names of children today. A popular name, that is no longer as common, could reflect social changes. Parents who are seeking a name for their newborn frequently take inspiration from one of two sources. They might select a name that has been passed down through their family for generations, or name their child after his or her grandparent. Or, parents might look to popular … Continue reading

Most Popular Baby Names of 2011 Revealed

The BabyCenter website has revealed the list of the most popular baby names of 2011. The list includes 100 names of girls, and 100 names of boys. The names that a generation of parents gives to their children reveals a lot about the popular culture of that year. Genealogists may come across some unusual and unfamiliar names as they learn about their ancestors. If you dig around a little bit, you might be able to find information that helps explain where the inspiration for those names came from. This could give you a clue into the types of books, movies, … Continue reading

Popular Baby Names From A Century Ago

Today, parents often give their newborns a name that was inspired by popular culture. This is not a new phenomena. If you take a close look at the baby names that were popular about one hundred years ago, you will find that your ancestors were also inspired by popular culture when they named their babies. Perhaps one of your ancestors was named after someone who was famous in 1910. In many ways, day to day life is very different now, than it was around one hundred years ago. Your ancestors didn’t have cell phones, access to the internet, or big … Continue reading

Pop Culture Round Up – January 31, 2011

We have almost made it through the first month of the year and so how much has happened. Charlie Sheen is in rehab, but David Arquette just came out, of rehab that is. And Lindsay Lohan – where is she? As it stands right now, Lindsay is both out of rehab and jail for right now. However, she has another court hearing on February 25th, so anything can happen. But, you may be glad to know that TMZ is reporting that Lindsay is glad Charlie has gone to rehab because she is worried about him. Worried about him? Wow, what … Continue reading