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James Hargett

The well-known writer and statesman Su Shi (or Su Dongpo, 1037–1101) spent a good portion of his career as a government official moving from one bureaucratic appointment to another. This was not unusual, for officials in traditional China were routinely shifted from post to post, usually every two or three years, to prevent them from gaining too much power or influence in one office or place. Several of Su Shi’s appointments, however, were in fact demotions. His outspoken criticism of the reform policies of Wang Anshi (1021–85) got Su (and many of his supporters) into some very serious political trouble. The result was their removal, by political opponents, from the national political scene in the capital to posts in the provinces. On a few occasions Su Shi and his followers were able to regain power in the capital and returned – temporarily, at least – to a position of influence. Su Shi’s career as a statesman, then, followed an alternating pattern of service and exile. In his more than forty years as a government officer, Su experienced three periods of political removal: the first from 1080 to 1084 in Huangzhou (in modern Hubei Province); the second from 1094 to 1096 in Huizhou (in modern Guangdong Province); and the last from 1097 to 1100 on Hainan Island in the far south.

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Elizabeth Ferry

“When the purpose at hand begins from the perspective of a philosophy of praxis, that is to say from a motivation to enhance the leverage of radical democratic interventions in history, then the forming of the intellectual problem takes a particular shape.” — Gavin Smith, Intellectuals and (Counter-) Politics: Essays in Historical Realism

This statement frames Gavin Smith’s thoughtful, complex text Intellectuals and (Counter-) Politics: Essays in Historical Realism. Indeed, you could call the book a manual for the forming of a problem from this kind of perspective and with this motivation. To give a comprehensive discussion of how this might happen, Smith brings in a whole range of questions: What is an intellectual? How do intellectuals reach audiences? How are counter-politics situated within time and space, and how should they be studied? By including the domains of intellectuals, political actors, publics, and the constraining tendencies of structure—of “capital’s fierce demands”—in his analysis, while always recognizing the porous and fluctuating boundaries between these domains, Smith (2014: 11) frames the question of activist scholarship and the ongoing historicity of politics in a way that attempts to grasp their changing, tangled, and slippery nature. The result is an immensely rich book that provides a nudge along the path to a complex account of arrangements of capital and political mobilization that it reveals.

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Susanne Ledanff

On 4 July 2002, the German Bundestag had to decide on the future

of one of the capital city’s principal historical sites: the square known

as the Schlossplatz, where the Hohenzollern Palace once stood but

that since 1976 had been the site of the German Democratic Republic’s

flagship Palace of the Republic. It was not the first time that

German politicians had been called upon to decide issues relating to

art and architecture. On previous occasions votes had been taken on

the wrapping of the Reichstag by Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Sir

Norman Foster’s dome, Hans Haacke’s artistic installation “Der

Bevölkerung” inside the Reichstag, and Peter Eisenman’s design for

Berlin’s Holocaust memorial.1 Their decision to rebuild the historical

palace, however, differed in that the politicians did not vote on

an architectural design, “in eigener Sache.”2 That is, it was not a

building or monument belonging to the governmental or political

sphere of the capital city but rather a site likely to house cultural

institutions. Parliamentarians, thus, were called upon to settle a

twelve-year-old planning and architectural controversy after all other

means, including architectural competitions, had failed.

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Youngho Chang, Jiesheng Tan, and Letian Chen

Studies on sustainable development rely on diverse and seemingly conflicting concepts that yield contrasting results. The root of these conflicting concepts is the lack of agreement on the path toward achieving sustainable development (SD), namely, weak (or economic) versus strong (or ecological) sustainability. This article revisits the Solow-Hartwick model (Solow 1974, 1986; Hartwick 1977, 1978a, 1978b), which suggests that an economy can achieve intergenerational equity by mandating the Hartwick rule of investing the amount of rents from natural capital into renewable capital. It constructs a modified Solow-Hartwick model in which the assumptions of constant population and no technological progress are relaxed and from which it derives a more general form of the Hartwick rule. The modified Solow-Hartwick investment rule presents how weak sustainability can be attained and explains how the residual Hotelling rents (or proceeds from natural resources) could be utilized in order to achieve strong sustainability. In this article, we apply the modified Solow-Hartwick investment rule to a selection of developing and developed Asian economies to assess their sustainability. We then compare our results with two existing measures of sustainability, the genuine savings (GS) model and the Environmental Sustainability Index (ESI), both of which frequently present contradicting evaluations on the status of sustainability.

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Sarah Townsend, Anna J. Willow, Emily Stokes-Rees, Katherine Hayes, Peter C. Little, Timothy Murtha, Kristen Krumhardt, Thomas Hendricks, Stephanie Friede, Peter Benson, and Gregorio Ortiz

ANDERSON, E. N., Caring for Place: Ecology, Ideology, and Emotion in Traditional Landscape Management

ÁRNASON, Arnar, Nicolas ELLISON, Jo VERHUNST, and Andrew WHITEHOUSE, eds., Landscapes Beyond Land: Routes, Aesthetics, Narratives

BARNARD, Timothy P., ed., Nature Contained: Environmental Histories of Singapore

BARTHEL-BOUCHIER, Diane, Cultural Heritage and the Challenge of Sustainability

FOOTE, Stephanie and Elizabeth MAZZOLINI, eds., Histories of the Dustheap: Waste, Material Cultures, Social Justice

HAKANSSON, Thomas N. and Mats WIDGREN, eds., Landesque Capital: The Historical Ecology of Enduring Landscape Modifications

PERLMUTTER, David and Robert ROTHSTEIN, The Challenge of Climate Change: Which Way Now?

RUPP, Stephanie, Forests of Belonging: Identities, Ethnicities, and Stereotypes in the Congo River Basin

SODIKOFF, Genese Marie, ed., The Anthropology of Extinction: Essays on Culture and Species Death

SWANSON, Drew A., A Golden Weed: Tobacco and Environment in the Piedmont South

WILBER, Tom, Under the Surface: Fracking, Fortunes, and the Fate of the Marcellus Shale

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The Hebrew Collections in Oxford

A Treasure Grove for Jewish Studies

Piet van Boxel

The Bodleian Library of Oxford University – one of the oldest and largest in Europe – is among the most celebrated libraries in the world. Its unrivalled collections of manuscripts and books have served generations of students, thus making Oxford a meeting place of international learning and the capital of the Republic of scholars. With its beginnings in the fourteenth century the library owes the first phase of its reputation to Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester, the youngest son of King Henry IV, who donated his priceless collection of more than 280 manuscripts, including several important classical texts, to Oxford University. In order to accommodate this major donation the library was moved from its original location – a room above the Old Congregation House, erected next to St Mary’s church – to the Divinity School, which was enlarged with a second storey that was completed in 1470.

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Mokum is Home

Amsterdam's Jewish Historical Museum

Robin Ostow

Mokum is 'Amsterdam' in the local dialect of Yiddish. Deriving from the Hebrew word makom, meaning 'place', Mokum affectionately designates the Dutch capital as 'the place' for Jews. Judith Belinfante, director of Amsterdam's Jewish Historical Museum from 1976 to 1998, explained: 'Amsterdam was, for a long time, the only place where Jews could come without any restrictions'. Already in the early seventeenth century, Jews began arriving, from Portugal and from Central and Eastern Europe. And, in contrast to the rest of Europe, in Amsterdam, they were given unlimited freedom to settle, and were never confined to ghettos, or forced to wear a distinctive sign. The extent of Jewish institutional integration in Amsterdam, and today, throughout the Netherlands, is nowhere more evident than in the history and exhibitions of Amsterdam's Jewish Historical Museum. It's a classical Heimat or 'home town' museum. It celebrates the city, and displays Amsterdam and Dutch Jewry as a dynamic, loyal and well-integrated minority.

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Republican Antiracism and Racism

A Caribbean Genealogy

Laurent Dubois

In the Département d’Outre-Mer of Guadeloupe, a schoolteacher named Hugues Delannay presents me with a conundrum that has preoccupied him for a long time. He has been teaching in a lycée for over twenty years in Basse-Terre, the island’s capital, and has had many brilliant students who, when they take their baccalaureat examinations, get mixed results. Normally, they excel on the written portions of the examination. Consistently, however, they do worse on their oral examinations, which drags down their grades. Why? It is not that their speaking skills are not up to par—far from it, he tells me, these students are articulate and speak impeccable French. There is, according to Delannay, a simpler, and ultimately more disturbing explanation. The examiners who give these students low grades in their oral examinations almost always come from metropolitan France.

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Thomas Fillitz

The present economic and financial crises do not seem to particularly influence the global art market of contemporary art. In an attempt to understand this apparent opposition, I adopt a macro perspective, combining my own research ventures in Dakar and Vienna with general art market studies. I argue that this market is a special representation of millennial capitalism (Comaroff and Comaroff 2001). The global art market puts in place an organization of diversity that allows a high flexibility in including specific centers and marginalizing others, as well as a special focus on a globally acting group of “ultra high net worth” individuals. Striking features are the concentration of capital flows to a few major centers, the constitution of complex, transnational networks, the dominant logics for each market field (gambling, glamour, moral economy), and the diversification of the commodity character of the work of art.

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"Blood Will Have Blood"

A Study in Indian Political Ritual

Jacob Copeman

This article considers the significance of the incorporation of blood donation as a widespread feature of commemorative political rituals in India. It places the rituals in the context of the current campaign in India to replace paid with non-remunerated donation, and explains how this campaign has led to the circulation of a store of ethical capital that the ritual organizers endeavor—through these blood-shedding commemorations—to capture for political ends. It is argued that there is nothing purely political about memorial blood donation—that its performance relies upon certain established religious themes in order to achieve political efficacy, and that this works both ways. The article highlights the role of blood donation in facilitating bodily transactions across and between different temporal locations, and finishes with a case study that demonstrates the risk involved in these rituals of remembrance.