the fundamental group

anonymous asked:

How are Christians guilty of cultural appropriation?

So, anon, I’m going to take issue with your use of “guilty.” “Guilty” is used for crimes and sins, and cultural appropriation isn’t either.

But, I mean, Christianity is fundamentally about a group of non-Jewish people declaring themselves to be the true Jews, and that their religious practice is the perfection / improvement of the religious practices of some other culture. That’s pretty on the nose cultural appropriation, to the point of being a definitional case.

Why Your First Course in Topology Will Probably Be Disappointing

My professor had one of these stickers right on his office door. It’s a classic and simple topology joke, playing off the fact that topology is often regarded as the study of “nice” continuous deformations, such as stretching, shrinking, and twisting. The professor himself liked to describe topology as “the study of infinitely stretchy elastic bands.” And it only takes a few seconds on the Wiki page for topology to find a fascinating image of a mug into a doughnut.

So if you’re like me and you’ve seen and heard about all these cool things and think topology is the most hip form of geometry you’ve ever come across, then you might be surprised when you get to the definition of a topology:

Given a set X, a collection of subsets of X, denoted T, is a topology on X if:

  • X and the empty set are in T
  • Any arbitrary union of elements of T is also in T
  • Any finite intersection of elements of T is also in T


Or at least that was my initial reaction… What you often see in a first undergraduate course, or sometimes even a graduate course, is known as point-set topology, and ends being a development of topology through a set-theoretic point of view, that dips in and out of geometry.

And this development, honestly, can be a bit disappointing. You probably weren’t looking to learn more about things you can do with sets, you probably don’t care that much about learning what an open set and closed set is, and you probably don’t want to learn about connectedness and compactness (which you may have already learned in your analysis class anyway). So it’s frustrating.

BUT DON’T GIVE UP. Depending on how fast your course moves, you may spend all semester on these set theoretic ideas. But as soon as you learn about continuity (and, honestly, even a little before if you’re willing to lose a little rigor), you could go straight on to learn about homotopies and the fundamental group and all sorts of cool algebraic topology things

And as you get to homeomorphisms, quotient maps, and quotient spaces (which immediately follow after continuity), you’re right there on the edge of all those “cool” things that you were expecting from the class. 

So, don’t get too discouraged. Point-set topology might seem a bit boring and not quite what you were looking for at first, but if you’re ambitious and want to learn things on your own or can even push you professor into teaching some different things, then all the cool rubber geometry stuff is right around the corner, or at least awaiting you in your next class in topology. And remember, point-set topology may seem dull, but structures on sets are pretty fascinating, so enjoy it while you can!

so the hypocrisy of Theresa May talking about “opposing Islamic extremism” but then relying on a party with deep ties to unionist fundamentalism/loyalist paramilitary groups to gain a majority is pretty galling isn’t it lads

Always Mine (Spencer Reid fluff/smut-ish)

note: Just an old story because I’m trash and I don’t have any requested stories or another part of Lie to me (sorry blame exams not me pls)

Keep reading


Introducing the Southeast Asian Region [x]Vietnam 
One Vision, One Identity, One Community

Lying on the eastern part of the Indochinese peninsula, Vietnam is a strip of land shaped like the letter “S” in mainland Southeast Asia. China borders it to the north, Laos and Cambodia to the west, the East Sea to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the east and south. It is the gateway for the connection with the Southeast Asia mainland and maritime Southeast Asia islands. Vietnam is the mixture place of different cultures in the region. Here, there are three big linguistics families in the Southeast Asia, the linguistics family of Southern islands and the Chinese-Tibeto linguistics family. The language of Vietnamese ethnic groups belongs to eight groups of different languages.

Việt-Mường Group: Chứt, Kinh, Mường, Thổ.

Tày-Thái Group: Bố Y, Giáy, Lào, Lự, Nùng, Sán Chay, Tày, Thái.

Mon-Khmer Group: Ba na, Brâu, Bru-Vân kiều, Chơ-ro, Co, Cơ-ho, Cơ-tu, Cơ-tu, Gié-triêng, Hrê, Kháng, Khmer, Khơ mú, Mạ, Mảng, M'Nông, Ơ-đu, Rơ-măm, Tà-ôi, Xinh-mun, Xơ-đăng, Xtiêng.

Mông-Dao Group: Dao, Mông, Pà Thẻn.

Kađai Group: Cờ Lao, La Chí, La ha, Pu Péo.

Austro-Polynenisian Group: Chăm, Chu-ru, Ê đê, Gia-rai, Ra-glai.

Chinese Group: Hoa, Ngái, Sán Dìu.

Tibeto Group: Cống, Hà Nhì, La Hủ, Lô Lô, Phù Lá, Si La.

The voice of each ethnic group creates different languages, but due to Vietnamese ethnic groups live closely, one ethnic group may know languages of some others whom has regular relationship while their own culture character. The diversification culture of ethnic groups is put in general unification rule - the rule of advanced growth of country, like a united particularity in the common of philosophy category.

Vietnam is a multi-nationality country with 54 ethnic groups. The Viet (Kinh) people account for 87% of the country’s population and mainly inhabit the Red River delta, the central coastal delta, the Mekong delta and major cities. The other 53 ethnic minority groups, totaling over 8 million people, are scattered over mountain areas (covering two-thirds of the country’s territory) spreading from the North to the South.

Among ethnic minorities, the largest ones are Tay, Thai, Muong, Hoa, Khmer, and Nung with a population of around 1 million each, while the smallest are Brau, Roman, Odu with several hundred people each.

The Viet people succeeded in establishing a centralized monarchy right in the 10th century. The Cham people once boasted a flourishing culture early in the history. The Tay, Nung, and Khmer ethnic groups had reached high levels of development with the presence of various social strata. The Muong, Mong, Dao, Thai ethnic groups gathered under the rule of local tribal heads. Many ethnic groups divided their population into social echelons, especially those who lived in mountainous areas.

A number of ethnic minorities had mastered some farming techniques. They grew rice plants in swamped paddy fields and carried out irrigation. Others went hunting, fishing, collecting and lived a semi-nomadic life. Each group has its own culture, diverse and special. Beliefs and religions of the Vietnamese ethnic minority groups were also disparate from each other.

However, a fundamental solidarity among ethnic groups has been established on top of this difference as a result of a century-long cooperation on the soil of Vietnam. Right in the first century of the history, a mutual supplement in economic relationship between lowland people and mountainous people was formed. This solidarity had been unceasingly strengthened during wars of resistance for defending the country. Through the shared struggle for defending and building of the country and the mutual assistance for co-existence and development, a common community between the Viet people and other ethnic minority peoples had been established and continuously consolidated and developed.

Photo Sources: [x], [x], [x], [x], [x], [x], [x], [x]

brief notes on feminism, class and identity

This was sparked off by the confusion that generally predominates on the internet and in nominally left spaces about what ‘identity’ is. The standard ‘left’ identitarian position/response to anyone questioning the validity goes something like “Identity Politics and Intersectionality are radical theory about how race, gender, and class all come together to oppress and exploit millions of Americans” (as seen in this woeful article There are more than a few massive problems with this theoretical understanding that I can barely begin to condense into in a Tumblr post.

First off, intersectionality was Kimberle Crenshaw’s attempt to account for oppression within a legalistic framework to enable the construction of a legal class (this is different from ‘class’ as a material social entity) in order to create legal remedies to the specific problem of discrimination. Specifically, it was about solving the problem caused by the pre-existing legal classes ‘black’ and ‘female’ that did not account for black women (the most famous example being the landmark case where a firm laid off all the black female employees and claimed it was not unfairly dismissing them because of discrimination since they kept black men and white women on), and which operated to the legal disadvantage of black women and other women of colour. Like other forms of problem-solving theory, it is a liberal theoretical framework whose innovation and raison d’être is inclusion. Inclusion is not the end goal of liberation movements, nor is it intrinsically the means of getting there. As for taking intersectionality to be some type of social theory, I would argue that if you needed a model of ‘intersection’ between groups, whose fundamental theoretical definition was based on a discrete particularity that did not adequately account for the group as a whole (eg ‘women’=white women, ‘black’=black men), I would scrap that theoretical model and try to come up with something new that better accounted for the whole picture.

Inclusion is the fundamental liberal principle that lies behind notions such as ‘equal opportunity’, which was allegedly brought to us when women were ‘allowed’ to join the workforce in the postwar years in large numbers, and informs us that this is a factual reality, whereas anyone socialised female that has been abused or raped and lives with debilitating trauma, and/or is a single mother, can tell you that because of that they do not have the education, work experience and career status that males the same age in the same economic class have been able to accumulate in the same period of time without the handicap of being the sex-class. ‘Inclusion’ masks that material reality (of power and its lack) and states that there exists parity. Similarly, inclusion is able to mask other material power structures that may operate in a given space - the idea of ‘including’ one’s oppressors in environments that explored the intimate effects of oppression, especially on consciousness, was thought by second wave feminists and the Black Power movement to be anathema to liberation. It was in effect allowing your oppressor to determine your liberation (i.e. how much liberation they would let you have). As the approach of third wave feminism has let us see, it means dragging down the entire movement to be about the achievement of a peaceable consensus between oppressor and oppressed. The limits of ‘educating’ the oppressor were acknowledged by this ‘outdated’ second wave model, which is lightyears beyond the understanding that predominates today - which is all about accumulating ‘allies’ for your cause who may be enlightened at best, but despite this they still manage to benefit from and constitute, and reproduce those same oppressive structures. The disparity between professed enlightenment and action breeds understandable cynicism, which can lead to unproductive anger that lends itself to building essentialist belief systems which are essentially a formal inversion of the dominant ideology to ‘explain’ this incongruent behaviour. The biodeterminism of certain strains of Anglo lesbian separatism being a key example.

Secondly, the confusion of ‘identity politics’ with liberation struggles stems from a fundamental confusion between identity and class. The main thesis of identity politics is that groups that receive behavioural discrimination or differential treatment, somehow are classes in themselves by virtue of this fact alone. It overemphasises the symbolic to the disavowal or complete exclusion of the material/structural. Hence notions of ‘symbolic violence’ that grate against what violence is and what constitutes it. Class, very simply, requires exploitation as its basic condition. The identification of belonging to that exploited class as the rationale for the exploitation, follows the fact of exploitation. Women are exploited in domestic labour (via the family unit/male cohabitation) and the sex industry, and are corporeally appropriated by the class of men to serve male desires. Racialised peoples are marked to occupy low-status jobs within capitalism that ‘reflect’ their supposed inferiority, and are hyperexploited to be kept there. And then there’s the ideology surrounding it all. As a counterexample, homosexuals are not a class -  they are not exploited or physically appropriated for being homosexual. Homosexuals receive discrimination and are on the receiving end of negative ideology, but this is derivative of the patriarchal institution of compulsory heterosexuality (this is not necessarily integral to patriarchy - see Ancient Greece). The value system of compulsory heterosexuality underlies persecution, which can be life-threatening. There is a relation of oppression present, but it is not a class oppression. It is discrimination on the basis of sexuality. Following this, homosexuals experience different oppression based on their sex-class status - male or female. From what I have generally observed, lesbian women don’t emphasise their homosexuality as rendering them as a different class from the rest of women - they situate their being lesbian as embedded in their being female and understanding lesbophobia as based in patriarchy. Gay men however will tend to push more for homosexuality to be considered as a class in itself that pushes against the 'normativity’ of a heterosexist society and exalts the value of being 'deviant’, whence we get the ‘queer’ movement. This approach puts forth a normative perspective of homosexual/queer oppression that does nothing to change compulsory heterosexuality and its institutions such as marriage, but exalts lifestylism/conspicuous consumption and posits the goal of inclusion through tolerance, as contradictory as it is when you have a norm/deviant framework. Hence weird concepts like ‘homonormativity’. This was the opposite approach to that of lesbian separatists, though that wasn’t without its problems. Given all this I wouldn’t necessarily theorise this kind of discrepancy as an ‘intersection’ between homosexuality and gender, since the two aren’t exactly discrete  - the prohibition of homosexuality is derivative of a certain patriarchal logic that is further explicated with regards to sexual difference.

Anyhow, this was just a bunch of thoughts I collated together. A distinction needs to be drawn between identity and class and if intersectionality is going to be any reliable method of joining the dots, one’s basic understanding of a social category has to be rigorous in the first place.

anonymous asked:

How does Vivek Chibber critique cultural appropriation theories?

I’ll admit that when I tell people that Chibber is someone whose ideas I work off of when it comes to criticizing appropriation discourse its not necessarily as clean cut as say when I reference someone like Kwame Anthony Appiah. While afaik Appiah only explicitly talks about the “cultural appropriation” by name one time and it was during a post-lecture Q&A the stuff he says in things like A Case for Contamination or even The Ethics of Identity can be pretty nicely be seen as applying to the same mentality thats behind shitty appropriation discourse its just that he was talking about it before “cultural appropriation” blew up in the early 2010’s.

Now with Chibber its different because he’s a sociologist that works mainly with political economy rather than cultural criticism. The way I think Chibber is useful for criticizing shitty appropriation discourse not because tackles it directly or tackles something incredibly analogous to it (such as the “cultural preservationists” whom Appiah critiques) directly but rather he criticizes what is arguably the general idealogical framework from which appropriation discourse partially emerges. So while his objects of critique aren’t as basic as some random clickbait article about the ‘Top 10 Ways For Foodies to Avoid Cultural Appropriation’ or whatever they go after what can be seen as some fundamental and basic assumptions of appropriation discourse.

I think that the argument made by Chibber in his critique of large trends in Subaltern Studies which most cleanly applies to a critique of appropriation discourse is his idea of a “resurrection” of Orientalism. He does this by attacking claims made about there being a fundamentally different psychology or subjectivity between Western and Eastern agency. The specifics of his arguments have to do with political economy, labor history and sociology and so don’t directly apply to most things said in the context of appropriation discourse because that is often done in complete ignorance of those fields but his conclusions still apply. Cultural appropriation discourse hinges strongly on the assumption that ‘being’ a ‘Westerner and ‘being’ an ‘Easterner’ are two different forms of existence at a fundamental and essential level. For example the ppl that did that whole Boston MFA protest thing think that letting anyone wear a kimono is in some way a violence towards every person that possesses an Asian or Asian-American identity. Its that sort of anti-universalist categorization of humans into fundamentally distinct groups that is the object of Chibber’s critique even if the forms he attacks tend to be more sophisticated.

Setting Out Across the Adriora Sea

On my mattress boat I carried

a black and blue bruised body.

As I rowed,

    an infection in my fingers ballooned      and bloomed

              swelled with pus

I floated all the way to floral flows and stimmering

steam stutters, stepping

on moss and popcorn flowers going flicker flare

in violet chioggia fields. The beets and

beats and bleats surrounding me were

striped and intermittent.


Muffled hearts going drum drum narum thumb  grew

like mangos on waxy- leaved trees.

I picked a heart and smelled

to see if it was ripe. Onto the mud

the tissue curled as I peeled it. The red rinds

quivered with the trees in tandem.

With a string I tied the pulpy organ around my neck.



Since the early Germans could not rely upon the protection and assistance of a bureaucratic empire when they were threatened with attack or famine, it was incumbent upon each man and woman of the community to adhere to the fundamental sociobiological principle of group survival embodied in the bonds of familial and communal solidarity. One’s status in society depended upon how closely one adhered to this fundamental principle. Those who behaved honorably, thereby contributing toward the advancement of their community, were materially rewarded and thus increased their wealth, power, and influence. It is likely that the coalescence of honor, wealth, influence, and power within Germanic society inhibited the spread of status inconsistency and its potentially anomic effects, and served to further reinforce Germanic group solidarity.
—  James C. Russell, The Germanization of Early Medieval Christianity: A Sociohistorical Approach to Religious Transformation

full offense but you can’t be a part of a group that fundamentally supports appropriation of Jewish culture for the express purpose of eliminating Judaism by converting Jews to Christianity and then start crying when we tell you to fuck off.

anonymous asked:

I think you have your history wrong. The United States helped the Taliban giving them weapons and training to fight back the Soviet Union. The Northern Alliance came after in the 90's and they were from the Taliban! So I don't know where you get your knowledge from...

You see this is where everyone gets their facts wrong. Let’s get a few things straight first. We don’t want to confuse the different groups here.

Keep reading

newflavorblue  asked:

Wil, I'm super sad. I just found out that my friend, of 14 years, is an MRA. He doesn't think he is, but he is. I always assumed it was just because, as a straight white dude, he just had a fundamental misunderstanding of oppressed groups. But no. If you stand for anything you're a SJW and sociology is a useless made up field. Not like the STEM fields. It's cool if I break up with him, right?

If you care about him, and value your friendship, try reaching out to him and see if you can help him realize how he makes you feel. See if you can help him consider and internalize another point of view without attacking him (because MRAs are notoriously thin-skinned, and will shut down discussion with talking points they collected from reddit).

Hopefully, he’ll not only listen, but hear you. I mean, I was in my mid-twenties before I had any concept of how lucky and privileged I am compared to most of the world, and in my forties I still forget sometimes. I genuinely believed that feminism wasn’t about equality and kindness and respect, but was about tearing down men, and that drove me crazy because #notallmen. It wasn’t until I realized that every woman I know has been harassed at some point, that I realized there was a systemic problem in our culture. At that moment, I decided that I could continue to be part of the problem by being passive (because as a dude it didn’t make my life bad in any way), or I could start being part of the solution.

It’s a complicated thing, and it’s hard for men who genuinely believe that they’re good people to not realize how hurtful they are being, or how dismissive they are, or how they make everything about themselves without even realizing it.

Hopefully, your friend will care about you and your friendship and just being a decent human, and will work to change these things in himself.

But if he doesn’t, there’s nothing wrong with ending the friendship, and removing him from your life.

Nobody is ever under any obligation to maintain a hurtful or toxic relationship, no matter who it is with.

Gray fox and opossum - October Afternoon, Eastern Tennessee

A gray fox (ground)and a Virginia opossum (tree) are feeding upon ripe persimmons in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Both animals are omnivores—they eat plants and animals. 

Both species are nimble tree climbers as well, yet have different adaptations for the task. Gray foxes shinny up trunks by gripping with their forelimbs while pushing with their hind paws. Opossums climb with the help of an opposable toe on each hind foot, as well as a prehensile or “grasping” tail.

The gray fox and Virginia opossum may look similar, but they represent two fundamentally distinct groups of mammals.

Foxes are placentals, like humans and most mammals today. Mothers have long pregnancies, nourishing their fetuses through a placenta. Newborns are relatively large and robust, sometimes walking within hours.

Opossums are marsupials, a group that also includes kangaroos and koalas. Pregnancies are so short that newborns are barely more than embryos. The tiny babies crawl to a teat using strong forelimbs and nurse for many weeks to complete development. Like many marsupials, Virginia opossums protect their young with a pouch, or marsupium.

This diorama is located in the Bernard Family Hall of North American Mammals