Modern linguistics is founded on a radical premise: the equality of all languages. “All languages have equal expressive power as communication systems,” writes Steven Pinker. “Every grammar is equally complex and logical and capable of producing an infinite set of sentences to express any thought one might wish to express,” says a recent textbook. … Where native speakers are concerned, no language, dialect, or accent can meaningfully be described as primitive, broken, or inferior.
posted by nebulawindphone
on Sep 13, 2014 -
When you finally get a ship over to North America, you’ll notice that things look a little different. Europe is crammed cheek to jowl with minor duchies and single-province powers, at least in the early game. There is no square inch of territory unaccounted for. But when you get to the Americas, you’ll see a lot of “empty” territory. The provinces and territories that are not claimed by any power or nation can be colonized.
April Daniels was thoroughly enjoying the ruthless imperialistic stylings of Europa Universalis IV, until the game took her out of Europe and into a somewhat problematic implementation of colonialism
posted by MartinWisse
on Sep 7, 2014 -
The Ket from the Lake Munduiskoye
(2008, 30 min.) The Ket people
are an indigenous group in central Siberia whose population has numbered less than two thousand during the past century. Although mostly assimilated into the dominant Russian culture at this point, a couple hundred of them are still able to speak the Ket language
, the last remaining member of the Yeniseian language group. Recent scholarship
has proposed a link between Ket and some Native American language groups.
posted by XMLicious
on Apr 16, 2014 -
In 2008 the actor Rupert Everett hosted (seemingly from his apartment) a rather strange documentary: The Victorian Sex Explorer
( 2 3 4 5
), an attempt to follow in the footsteps of famed Explorer, translator, and author Sir Richard Burton
and convince us of Sir Burton's passion for sexual experimentation while laying in lots of bathhouses and visiting brothels. [more inside]
posted by The Whelk
on Jul 4, 2013 -
Or, why is there still socialism in the United States?
Why, then, would we look for evidence of socialism only where a state seized by radicals of the Left inaugurates a dictatorship of the proletariat? Or, to lower the rhetorical volume and evidentiary stakes, why would we expect to find socialism only where avowed socialists or labor parties contend for state power? We should instead assume that socialism, like capitalism, is a cross-class cultural construction, to which even the bourgeoisie has already made significant contributions – just as the proletariat has long made significant contributions to the cross-class construction we know as capitalism. What follows?
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Feb 13, 2013 -
Most of us reading on the blue lived through at least a portion of it. Forty-plus years of tension between the world's two superpowers and their allies. That's right: The Cold War.
Then, they made a documentary
. Aired on CNN in 1998, and never released on DVD,
the 24 episode, 20 hour series features tons of archival footage, along with many interviews with individuals directly involved at some of the highest levels.
You might not be able to see it on DVD, but you can watch the full series on Youtube, starting with Part 1: Comrades (1917-1945).
posted by symbioid
on Mar 27, 2012 -
The Age of Imperialism is over, but its impact remains
, leaving behind a long-lasting legacy through cultural norms. Comparing individuals on opposite sides of the long-gone Habsburg Empire border within five countries, it shows that firms and people living in what used to be the empire have higher trust in courts and police.
posted by -->NMN.80.418
on Jun 3, 2011 -
The Rehabilitation of Ernest Gellner
- It is easy to imagine why Ernest Gellner would be one of the universally known figures in Anglophone intellectual life. A polymath whose work ranged across anthropology, history, philosophy, and sociology, his mind wrestled with an encyclopedia's worth of nagging questions about nationalism, modernity, civil society, imperialism, Islam, psychoanalysis, ethics and epistemology ... All of this, to repeat, should explain Gellner's monumental prominence – except for the fact that he has no such prominence.
) [more inside]
posted by kliuless
on Jul 25, 2010 -
In 1943, while the Allies were busy battling the Axis Powers and the Nazi Regime, there was another
kind of war that was being waged against a helpless populace (living on the Indian Sub-continent). A war
that has been largely ignored by the mass media and the history books of our time. It is known as the Great Bengal Famine
, and ended up causing the death
of an estimated 1.5 million to 4 million
posted by hadjiboy
on Aug 30, 2008 -
"The Blessings-of-Civilization Trust,
wisely and cautiously administered, is a Daisy
. There is more money
in it, more territory
, more sovereignty
, and other kinds of emolument, than there is in any other game that is played. But Christendom has been playing it badly of late years, and must certainly suffer by it, in my opinion. She has been so eager to get every stake that appeared on the green cloth, that the People who Sit in Darkness
have noticed it – they have noticed it, and have begun to show alarm
. They have become suspicious of the Blessings of Civilization."
posted by homunculus
on Jun 13, 2007 -
Democratic presidential candidate rails against US imperialism. "The platform . . . condemns the experiment in imperialism as an inexcusable blunder, which has involved us in enormous expense, brought us weakness instead of strength, and laid our nation open to the charge of abandoning the fundamental principles of a republic."
A prominent American author who initially supported the conflict
, changed his mind, calling it "a mess, a quagmire from which each fresh step renders the difficulty of extrication immensely greater.”
The US is “the kind of World Power . . . that a prairie-dog village is . . . it is the duty of our Government to stand sentinel
, with solemn mien, and lifted nose, and curved paws, on top of our little World-Power mound.”
posted by insomnia_lj
on Mar 20, 2006 -
"I am an American, so that is why I make films about America.
America is sitting on our world, I am making films that have to do with America (because) 60% of my life is America. So I am in fact an American, but I can't go there to vote, I can't change anything. We are a nation under influence and under a very bad influence… because Mr. Bush is an asshole and doing very idiotic things."
Lars Von Trier introduces his new film
at the Cannes Film Festival
picks up where «Dogville
» left off, with the character originated by Nicole Kidman -- now played by Bryce Dallas Howard -- stumbling
onto a plantation that time forgot, where slavery
still operates in the 1930s. The film (5 MB .pdf file, official pressbook)
ends, as Dogville did, with David Bowie’s Young Americans played over a photomontage of images that range from a Ku Klux Klan meeting to the Rodney King beating, George Bush at prayer and Martin Luther King at his final rest, American soldiers in Vietnam and the Gulf, the Twin Towers. More inside.
posted by matteo
on May 16, 2005 -
Freedom's Defenders or Politicians' Pawns?
No pretense of protecting Americans’ freedom went into the decision to enter into the Spanish-American War
. It was out-and-out imperialism and nothing more. Veterans of that war may have helped to liberate Cuba , Guam , Puerto Rico , and the Philippines from Spanish rule; but those same veterans then turned around and rammed the jackboot of the U. S. military into the faces of those they had just liberated. Hundreds of thousands of Cubans and Filipinos, who had thought they were being freed only to find out they had merely exchanged one colonial master for another, were killed in their own independence-from-Uncle-Sam movements. When they finally did throw off direct U. S. rule, they were then saddled with dictators of Uncle Sam’s choosing. No credit for the defense of Americans’ freedom can be granted to veterans of this war.
Compare to this: Gunning For Saddam
We report, you decide indeed...
posted by Elim
on Mar 6, 2005 -
The world's first multinational
I found this informative piece via Arts&Letters. "Corporate greed, the ruination of traditional ways of life, share-price bubbles, western imperialism: all these modern complaints were made against the British East India Company in the 18th century. Nick Robins draws the lessons...
posted by Postroad
on Dec 10, 2004 -
"The people of Dogville are proud, hypocritical and never more dangerous than when they are convinced of the righteousness of their actions" (NYT link)
"The movie is, of course, an attack on America
—its innocence, its conformity, its savagery—though von Trier is interested not in the life of this country (he’s never been here) but in the ways he can exploit European disdain for it." (The New Yorker). Lars Von Trier's
new movie, Dogville
, is under attack from critics who consider it anti-American. Von Trier, of course, has never been to the US but he counters that he knows more about U.S. culture through modern media than, say, the makers of "Casablanca' knew about Morocco.
Kafka hadn't been to Amerika either
Should non US-ian artists leave America alone if they've never been there? Von Trier says that "in my own country, I'm considered anti-Danish
- again, that's more about politics than issues of nationality."
posted by matteo
on Mar 22, 2004 -
Sacred Arts of Haitian Vodou.
'Vodou is Haiti's mirror. Its arts and rituals reflect the difficult, brilliant history of seven million people, whose ancestors were brought from Africa to the Caribbean in bondage. In 1791 these Africans began the only successful national slave revolt in history. In 1804 they succeeded in creating the world's first Black republic: the only one in this hemisphere where all the citizens were free. Their success inspired admiration, fear and scorn in the wider world. Cut off from Euro-American support, Haitians managed to created their own dynamic "Creole" society-one rooted in Africa but responsive to all that was encountered in their new island home.' History, theology
and religious art.
Related :- an essay on the Vodou concept of soul
, Voodoos and Obeahs
on sacred-texts ('required reading if you want to understand the background of Haitian and Jamaican Vodun, and the profound influence of imperialism, slavery and racism on its development').
posted by plep
on Jan 2, 2004 -
In 1898, the United States made a major move in the direction of colonial imperialism with the acquisition of the Philippine Islands from Spain. President Bush, in a recent speech in the Philippines, pointed to that country's story as a model for rebuilding Iraq
. Perhaps a history lesson
about the American and Filipino experience in this occupation is in order for both us and our President. The atrocities
committed during the Filipinos' struggle for independence (including the use of concentration camps
), the high death toll
(between 250,000 and 1,000,000, according to this article), and the American occupation which spanned six decades lead me to question whether Bush is just ignorant of the associations made in this comparison, or if it's a subtle way for the administration to set the stage for what possessing Iraq is actually going to entail. (Most links courtesy of the outstanding BoondocksNet
, a collection of primary and secondary sources related to American imperialism.)
posted by UKnowForKids
on Oct 22, 2003 -
December 2, 1823
President James Monroe made his annual speech to congress and outlined his policy that the American continents were "henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers" Since then the US has, for better or worse, at times stood by
the Monroe Doctrine
, ignored it
when they had bigger issues back home and even argued that it doesn't apply
in the case of American imperialism. Is it time to retool our Latin America policy now that Europe doesn't seem so bent on imperialism there, or is the Doctrine needed as much as ever
posted by Pollomacho
on Dec 2, 2002 -
Brazil is in some trouble.
So the question must be asked, can globalization be an extension of imperialism? If so, in this case, is it? If not, how would one explain the current crisis felt in Brazil and all of Latin America?
posted by BlueTrain
on Jun 25, 2002 -
The serious business of selling all-American fun
"There could hardly be a better summation of the opportunity that American pop culture companies like Disney are enjoying overseas. With the end of the Cold War, the opening of China, and the worldwide triumph of American-style capitalism, the brand-name purveyors of American food, fashion, and entertainment have never had it so good."
posted by owillis
on Feb 15, 2002 -
Trouble for Pakistan?
It looks like the Pakistanis have really managed to piss of their Afghan neighbors with their imperialist ambitions
. The foreigners who so eagerly rushed to help the Taliban are getting shot for their troubles, some have wised up and are refusing to surrender
. Should we be trying to stop such behavior, or is this a case of If you can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen
posted by jaek
on Nov 16, 2001 -
Missionaries are frank imperialists.
But because they operate in the spiritual realm, they continue to enjoy a fuzzy kind of permission to conduct a kind of business that is largely impossible in other less ethereal spheres of life.
posted by rushmc
on May 22, 2001 -