Murder!: Entangled History, String Theory, and Narrative

The Junto

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On a dark and stormy night in July of 1729, a vicious murder occurred in the port city of Veracruz. Okay, I don’t actually know if it was stormy on that night, nor was the murder particularly vicious but, for narrative effect, bear with me. On the evening in question, a Dominican priest accompanied by an entourage of the town’s residents walked to the trading factory of the British South Sea Company to pay the factors a visit. According to Inquisition records, as the group approached the factory, shots were fired from within the building, and the Dominican priest fell dead. The man who fired the fatal shots – William Booth[1] – claimed that he had not recognized the priest and fired in self-defense. As Booth argued, marauders frequently roamed the streets after dark and he assumed the visitors wanted to rob him. Booth was sentenced to five years…

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