Diary of a Narcissistic Misanthrope

I like to think I’m an acquired taste, like old whiskey or arsenic in your tea



My name is Clarence (Hello), born in 1988, i got my undergrad degree in Sociology (with a concentration in Women's Studies) and I'm utterly terrified. I'm scared of everything, people, my own feelings and sometimes even being but really there's nothing much to be done about that despite what I say. And I will say a lot about how my life has no meaning and i want to die (which is the majority of the time) but sometimes it seems like life is worth living for and everything in it is a spectacular explosion of awe inspiring wonder (which is usually a three week span some time in March). If it seems odd to read think what it might be like living it. So to get off the topic of terror I prefer stories es. I like to read them, I love to live in them and there is nothing better to me than a story so I guess this blog is a story mostly about me. Don't bother trying to find themes, connection or messages in what I post cause there really aren't any (unless they are completely accidental).



This blog is a story about what I find, what I feel and what I think so to that end I collect things to post or reblog. Its not meant to be anything truly meaningful or interconnected, just fun (mostly fun for me if you don't like it you can fuck right off) This is collection of all the the weird and interesting links from around the net that I find, comics, technology, comedy, current events, sociology, general geek/nerd interest, and more weird stuff. I think it makes for the closest representation to who I am that I've ever done and it just keeps growing bigger which is most of the fun. Please feel free to talk to me and don't mind the depressive tone i will probably be using. I like to think I'm somewhat fun if also a complete idiot.
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Posts tagged "zee sociology"

zeezeescorner:

Banksy. Media at War.

zeezeescorner:

The Pew Research Centre’s Global Attitudes Project finds that humanitarian aid has a limited effect on improving the USA’s international image around the world. For example, in 2011, 85% of the 700 Japanese people who were surveyed reported a favourable view of America versus 66% of the Japanese participants in 2010. While the Pew Centre acknowledges that various reasons might contribute to an increased positive view of the USA, it seemed that America’s humanitarian commitment had a big impact in Japan. Then again, while the Pew Centre finds that America’s overseas aid improves its image in some countries, the link between humanitarianism and public goodwill is limited.

In Indonesia, the USA’s image improved in 2005, a couple of months after it delivered aid in the Banda Aceh region after a devastating tsunami. This positive view was not as strong as it was prior to the Second Gulf War.

In Pakistan, the USA’s public image improved modestly after it delivered aid to Northern Pakistan after a major earthquake in 2005, but this public image slipped again just one year later. By 2010, public goodwill towards the USA had slipped even further, despite America pledging humanitarian assistance following the floods.

Richard Wike, Associate Director for the Pew Global Attitudes Project writes:

The lesson for disaster relief efforts is that they are more likely to have a significant effect on public attitudes in countries where there is at least a reservoir of goodwill toward the U.S. In nations such as Pakistan, where countervailing issues and deeply held suspicions drive intense anti-Americanism, enhancing America’s image through humanitarian aid may prove considerably more difficult.

Read more about the surveys here.

If we began to believe that Wall Street is expendable, perhaps we would regulate it properly so that it would do what it should do, and only that. It should provide a place for Americans to put their savings and channel those savings into the most productive investments, not a round-robin of one casino-like speculation after another.

Jeff Madrick, The Washington Post, 19 Nov 2011.

Jeff Madrick is an Economics columnist and author of Age of Greed (2011). His piece for The Washington Post last year that still captures my sociological imagination today. Madrick argues that while America cannot live without Wall Street, it has moved away from its primary function, to support small businesses and to engender economic growth to serve the public, rather than personal interests of an elite few… Madrick argues that American society needs to shift its thinking about Wall Street - to start thinking of it as “expendable”. Why is this view relevant to applied sociology? …I find Madrick’s analysis useful for thinking about: what does Wall Street look like if it was working as an equitable, transparent and well-regulated social institution? What social policies and social practices are required in order to shift its current practices? The first step is to go back to what Wall Street should be doing, then working out how to ensure that begins to happen.

Read more at my other blog, Sociology at Work.

(via zeezeescorner)

(via zeezeescorner)

zeezeescorner:

pixyled:

esmeweatherwax:

racemash:

thespunkywallflower:

J. Marion Sims is called “the Father of Gynecology” due to his experiments on enslaved women in Alabama who were often submitted as guinea pigs by their plantation owners who could not use them for sexual pleasure. He kept seven women as subjects for four years, but left a trail of death and permanently traumatized black women. Anarcha was one of the women Sims experimented upon. A detailed history of this monster is in Harriet Washington’s book, Medical Apartheid.Sims believed that Africans were numb to pain and operated on the women without anesthesia or antiseptic. The procedures usually happened this way. Black female slaves who were guinea pigs would hold one subject down as Sims performed hysterectomies, tubal ligation, and other procedures to examine various female disorders.Sims also performed a host of operations on other slave populations. The following excerpt details his “practice” on enslaved infants.Sims began to exercise his freedom to experiment on his captives. He took custody of slave infants and, with a shoemaker’s awl, tried to pry the bones of their skulls into proper alignment.
 

You guys should really google him. 
(if you click the link, I did it for you)

fucking hell I just nearly got sick.

tumblrs tuaght me so much I had NO IDEA how SO MANY THINGS we have in modern days was LITERALLY made at the expense of black women. The fact that they skip over this in things like biology classes and stuff like that is disgusting. This is just apalling 

zeezeescorner:
This is a great post. I clicked on the Google link above (provided by racemash) and I read this New York Times article.  Barron Lerner reports how over time, scientists have protested the fact  that three statutes were built to commemorate Sims (in South Carolina,  Alabama and New York City), but none have been built to acknowledge the  sacrifice of his three main “test subjects” Lucy, Anarcha and Betsy. I  like this quote: “The story of J. Marion Sims is a reminder of how  history gets rewritten over time. The hope, of course, is that each new  account gets closer to the truth”.
This story also reminds me of  the history of trials for the oral contraceptive pill, which were tested  on poor women in a small town in Puerto Rico in the 1950s. The women  were deceived about their participation in the trial. They not told about the possible side effects of the untested drug. They did not give their informed consent. Many women died and had ongoing health complications as a result of the trials.
Today,  many women in advanced nations benefit from the experiments conducted  on poor, enslaved and disempowered women, but few people know about the  women whose health was compromised as a result. Additionally, for all  the past sacrifices, poor women are less likely to benefit from scientific trials. While Sims’  experiments have been attributed to the eradication of vesicovaginal  fistulas in advanced countries, this is still a major problem for 3.5 million women in developing nations, particularly in countries around Africa. The argument that unethical  practices of the past might be excused for their present-day benefits is  wilfully ignorant of the reality of who didn’t benefit back then and  who hasn’t benefited today: poor, non-white women.

zeezeescorner:

pixyled:

esmeweatherwax:

racemash:

thespunkywallflower:

J. Marion Sims is called “the Father of Gynecology” due to his experiments on enslaved women in Alabama who were often submitted as guinea pigs by their plantation owners who could not use them for sexual pleasure. 

He kept seven women as subjects for four years, but left a trail of death and permanently traumatized black women. 

Anarcha was one of the women Sims experimented upon. A detailed history of this monster is in Harriet Washington’s book, Medical Apartheid.

Sims believed that Africans were numb to pain and operated on the women without anesthesia or antiseptic. The procedures usually happened this way. 

Black female slaves who were guinea pigs would hold one subject down as Sims performed hysterectomies, tubal ligation, and other procedures to examine various female disorders.

Sims also performed a host of operations on other slave populations. The following excerpt details his “practice” on enslaved infants.

Sims began to exercise his freedom to experiment on his captives. He took custody of slave infants and, with a shoemaker’s awl, tried to pry the bones of their skulls into proper alignment.
 

You guys should really google him

(if you click the link, I did it for you)

fucking hell I just nearly got sick.

tumblrs tuaght me so much 
I had NO IDEA how SO MANY THINGS we have in modern days was LITERALLY made at the expense of black women. The fact that they skip over this in things like biology classes and stuff like that is disgusting.

This is just

apalling 

zeezeescorner:

This is a great post. I clicked on the Google link above (provided by racemash) and I read this New York Times article. Barron Lerner reports how over time, scientists have protested the fact that three statutes were built to commemorate Sims (in South Carolina, Alabama and New York City), but none have been built to acknowledge the sacrifice of his three main “test subjects” Lucy, Anarcha and Betsy. I like this quote: “The story of J. Marion Sims is a reminder of how history gets rewritten over time. The hope, of course, is that each new account gets closer to the truth”.

This story also reminds me of the history of trials for the oral contraceptive pill, which were tested on poor women in a small town in Puerto Rico in the 1950s. The women were deceived about their participation in the trial. They not told about the possible side effects of the untested drug. They did not give their informed consent. Many women died and had ongoing health complications as a result of the trials.

Today, many women in advanced nations benefit from the experiments conducted on poor, enslaved and disempowered women, but few people know about the women whose health was compromised as a result. Additionally, for all the past sacrifices, poor women are less likely to benefit from scientific trials. While Sims’ experiments have been attributed to the eradication of vesicovaginal fistulas in advanced countries, this is still a major problem for 3.5 million women in developing nations, particularly in countries around Africa. The argument that unethical practices of the past might be excused for their present-day benefits is wilfully ignorant of the reality of who didn’t benefit back then and who hasn’t benefited today: poor, non-white women.

zeezeescorner:

A common misconception about anime cartoons amongst uninitiated audiences in majority-English-speaking countries is that anime characters are drawn to look ‘White’ rather than ‘Asian’. First of all, neither of terms are factual fixed categories - they are social constructions. That is, the meaning attached to race, whether ‘White’, ‘Black’, ‘Asian’ and so on, and the groups classified under these labels, change from one society to another, depending upon culture, time and place.

In an excellent exploration of the social construction of race in popular culture, sociologist Julian Abagond shows that Japanese animators do not, in fact, draw anime characters to personify their aspiration to be ‘white’. Instead, these characters reflect the animators’ own cultural biases - which is that Japanese people are the prototype model of the ‘default human being’. Abagond writes in Sociological Images:


If I draw a stick figure, most Americans will assume that it is a white man. Because to them that is the Default Human Being. For them to think it is a woman I have to add a dress or long hair; for Asian, I have to add slanted eyes; for black, I add kinky hair or brown skin. Etc.

The Other has to be marked. If there are no stereotyped markings of otherness, then white is assumed.

Americans apply this thinking to Japanese drawings. But to the Japanese the Default Human Being is Japanese! So they feel no need to make their characters “look Asian”. They just have to make them look like people and everyone in Japan will assume they are Japanese – no matter how improbable their physical appearance.

You see the same thing in America: After all, why do people think Marge Simpson is white? Look at her skin: it is yellow. Look at her hair: it is a blue Afro. But the Default Human Being thing is so strong that lacking other clear, stereotyped signs of being either black or Asian she defaults to white…

When you think about it there is nothing particularly white about how anime characters look:huge round eyes – no one looks like that, not even white people (even though that style of drawing eyes does go back to Betty Boop).

  • yellow hair – but they also have blue hair and green hair and all the rest. Therefore hair colour is not about being true to life.
  • small noses – compared to the rest of the world whites have long noses that stick out.
  • white skin – but many Japanese have skin just as pale and white as most White Americans…

Some Americans, even some scholars, will argue against this view of anime. They want to think the Japanese worship America or worship whiteness and use anime to prove it.  But they seem to be driven more by their own racism and nationalism than anything else.

As Abagond’s analysis shows, perceptions of race and gender influence how people ‘read’, understand and draw meaning from animation. For Japanese animators, their characters reflect their view of normality - that everyone in their creation is Japanese (or Korean or Chinese or wherever the anime is produced). Audiences that have an uncritical view of race and Whiteness presume that ‘Asian’ drawings should look ‘Asian’. Yet this term - Asian - means different things to different groups. In Japan, the category of Asian is not very meaningful. Instead, mainstream Japanese culture portrays the Japanese people as the ‘default human being’. Gender and class also affect how this default human being is imagined (usually male, affluent and lean).

Just all art forms embody the biases and taken-for-granted cultural assumptions about the world, what audiences see in anime drawings are mediated by the ethnocentrism of the animators and audiences. Ethnocentrism is the belief that one’s group is superior to others. Viewers who think Japanese anime characters are trying to look ‘White’ are therefore viewing this artform through ethnocentrism.

Credit
Quotation originally from Abagond’s blog, via Sociological Images.

Image of Jubei from Ninja Scroll from Jinni.

zeezeescorner:

SOPA venn diagram.

I have a thing for venn diagrams.

[On the left, a tiny sliver of a circle reads ‘Actual piracy enforcement’, on the far right another tiny sliver reading ‘Remaining internet freedom’. The large overlapping circle in the centre reads ‘Internet censorship’.]

69 plays

zeezeescorner:

sociologizer:

Discussion: A fascinating discussion about Google Correlate, which correlates search terms with others.

zeezee’s corner:

This is really interesting- I enjoyed it. I just wish NPR had made more use of the sociologist, Phil Cohen! Cohen’s research finds that there is a relationship between liberal voters doing Google searches about liberal candidates whilst also searching for vegetarian recipes and issues. Similarly, there is a relationship between republican voters searching for republican candidates and also doing searches for weight-loss information.Cohen’s brief feature in this story is used to make the point that political interests are influenced by culture, but this issue is not taken further. Instead, Shankar Vedantam, the NPR science correspondent, then argues that Google Correlate is an excellent data mining tool that facilitates political campaigning.

Ending on the idea that political campaigners are ‘irresponsible’ if they don’t use Google Correlate is a lost opportunity. Vedantam might have used this story make a significant scientific argument about the relationship between class, use and access to technology, technical literacy and political consciousness. What about the validity of what this tool is actually measuring? What do these spurious correlations between search terms actually mean? So liberal voters do Google searches about liberal candidates and vegetarian recipes - what does this actually say about the relationship between politics, technology and lifestyle? What does this say about the way people seek out information? What are the educational and socio-economic differences in the way different groups use Google search and how does this influence their political engagement? What about the ethics of this research tool being used for political campaigning? A sociologist could have spoken to these themes and made a better concluding comment than Vedantam, who simply celebrates the fact that Google Correlate facilitates political marketing. I want to think about all of this some more. Thanks for sharing, sociologizer - thought provoking stuff.