The Egyptian Book of the Dead: A guidebook for the underworld - Tejal Gala

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Ancient Egyptians believed that in order to become immortal after death, a spirit must first pass through the underworld — a realm of vast caverns, lakes of fire, and magical gates. Needless to say, one needed to come prepared. But how? Tejal Gala describes an Egyptian "Book of the Dead" -- a customized magic scroll written by the living to promote a smooth passage to the afterlife when they died.

Lesson by Tejal Gala, animation by Silvia Prietov.

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The scientific origins of the Minotaur - Matt Kaplan

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The myth of the Minotaur tells the story of an enraged beast forever wandering the corridors of a damp labyrinth, filled with a rage so intense that its deafening roar shakes the earth. But is this story just fiction, or an attempt of our early ancestors to make sense of the natural world? Matt Kaplan examines the myth for its scientific roots.

Lesson by Matt Kaplan, animation by Artrake Studio.
The pharaoh that wouldn't be forgotten - Kate Green

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View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/the-pharaoh-that-wouldn-t-be-forgotten-kate-narev

Hatshepsut was a female pharaoh during the New Kingdom in Egypt. Twenty years after her death, somebody smashed her statues, took a chisel and attempted to erase the pharaoh’s name and image from history. But who did it? And why? Kate Green investigates Hatshepsut's history for clues to this ancient puzzle.

Lesson by Kate Green, animation by Steff Lee.
What caused the French Revolution? - Tom Mullaney

What caused the French Revolution? - Tom Mullaney

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What rights do people have, and where do they come from? Who gets to make decisions for others, and on what authority? And how can we organize society to meet people’s needs? Tom Mullaney shows how these questions challenged an entire nation during the upheaval of the French Revolution.

Lesson by Tom Mullaney, animation by Sashko Danylenko.
What happens to our bodies after we die? - Farnaz Khatibi Jafari

What happens to our bodies after we die? - Farnaz Khatibi Jafari

View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/what-happens-to-our-bodies-after-we-die-farnaz-khatibi-jafari

Since the dawn of humanity, an estimated 100.8 billion people have lived and died, a number that increases by about 0.8% of the world’s population each year. What happens to all of those peoples’ bodies after they die? And will the planet eventually run out of burial space? Farnaz Khatibi Jafari traces the evolution of how humanity has treated bodies and burials.

Lesson by Farnaz Khatibi Jafari, animation by Ivana Bošnjak and Thomas Johnson.