Tuesday, August 26, 2014

This blog is slowly being dismantled

If you are interested in the current blog -- go to Dialogic Cinephilia


Merriam-Webster Dictionary definiton:


Main Entry: eth•nog•ra•phy
Pronunciation: eth-'nä-gr&-fE
Function: noun
Etymology: French ethnographie, from ethno- + -graphie -graphy
: the study and systematic recording of human cultures; also : a descriptive work produced from such research
- eth•nog•ra•pher /-f&r/ noun
- eth•no•graph•ic /"eth-n&-'gra-fik/ or eth•no•graph•i•cal /-fi-k&l/ adjective
- eth•no•graph•i•cal•ly /-fi-k(&-)lE/ adverb



1. A Study Of A Culture
Ethnographers stress that we move within social worlds, and that to understand the behaviour, values and meanings of any given individual (or group), we must take account of some kind of cultural context. In this respect, ethnography balances attention to the sometimes minute everyday detail of individual lives with wider social structures.

The word 'culture' is notoriously difficult to define, but it is hard to avoid in a discussion of ethnography. A culture is made up of certain values, practices, relationships and identifications. Spindler and Spindler (1992:70) have the following definition of 'culture':
For each social setting (i.e. classroom) in which various scenes (e.g. reading, 'meddlin', going to the bathroom) are studied, there is the prior (native) cultural knowledge held by each of the various actors, the action itself, and the emerging, stabilising rules, expectations, and some understandings that are tacit. Together these constitute a 'classroom' or 'school' culture.

An ethnographer will try to define a particular culture by asking questions such as 'What does it mean to be a member of this group?' and 'What makes someone an insider or an outsider here?'. The ethnographer tries to make sense of what people are doing by asking 'What's going on here? How does this work? How do people do this?' and hopes to be told by those people about "the way we do things around here" (Deal 1985).

Answering those questions requires an openness to learning from those who inhabit that culture, and a willingness to see everything and suspend premature judgment on what should be selected as data. The usefulness of the information may not be immediately apparent, but is often collected and stored anyway. This quality of openness lies at the heart of ethnography, in its processes, purposes and ethics.

2. Multiple Methods, Diverse Forms Of Data
Cultures are complex and multi-faceted. To reach even a rudimentary understanding of them requires an openness to looking in many different ways. Different situations must be sampled many times - including the now widely accepted parameters of people, place and time - to establish what and who counts as being part of a culture.
Ethnographers often need to adopt a 'magpie' attitude to information. Data may consist of written documents, the researchers' own fieldnotes (including observational notes, and records of spoken communications such as discussions, chance conversations, interviews, and overheard remarks), audiotapes and videotapes; quantitative data may also be included, such as survey or experimental findings. Gold (1997:393) suggests that the fieldwork phase of an ethnography is complete only when 'both the ethnographer and his or her informants have exhausted their ability to identify other kinds of informants and other sorts of questions of relevance to the research objectives': ethnographers will keep looking, listening, asking, watching, experimenting, and so on until they feel they have enough to make sense of what is going on.

In order to 'develop the story as it is experienced by participants' (Woods 1994:311), and gain a multi-dimensional appreciation of the setting, the ethnographer must be prepared to consider many different types of data. These can be generated only through the use of multiple methods, which may include interviewing, observing, quantitative work, and assembling cultural artifacts. It makes sense then, that a study which uses only one field technique (however exhaustively) does not constitute an ethnography, since it can generate only one kind of data.

3. Engagement
The ethnographer believes that 'observation of culture in situ' (Denscombe 1995:184) is the best way of getting to know it intimately. Hence Woods' (1994:310) description of the 'most prominent features of an ethnographic approach' as 'long-term engagement in the situation as things actually happen and observing things first-hand.' Ethnographers work on the premise that there is important knowledge which can be gained in no other way than just 'hanging around' and 'picking things up' from a naturalistic setting. Spindler and Spindler (1992:63) are unequivocal:
The requirement for direct, prolonged, on-the-spot observation cannot be avoided or reduced. It is the guts of the ethnographic approach.

The principle of engagement by the researcher contains two elements: human connection with participants, and an investment of time. There is an assumption that, as the researcher becomes a more familiar presence, participants are less likely to behave uncharacteristically. Gold (1997:394) explains: 'The fieldworker uses face-to-face relationships with informants as the fundamental way of demonstrating to them that he or she is there to learn about their lives without passing judgment on them ...' The idea is that participants 'perform' less, and, as trust builds, reveal more details of their lives. So the success of an ethnography depends on the researcher developing and maintaining a positive personal involvement with participants (Denscombe 1995:178), staying as close as possible to what and who is being studied, and returning perhaps many times to the field. Spindler and Spindler (1992:66) also argue that "only the human observer can be alert to divergences and subtleties that may prove more important than the data produced by any predetermined categories of observation or any instrument."

Part of how an ethnographer learns about a culture is through a process of enculturation, which takes time. Participants and settings need time to show what's going on. As the researcher enters the culture more deeply, new questions and avenues open up, requiring further investigation. 'Blitzkrieg ethnography' (Rist 1980), where the researcher spends only two or three days in the field, is therefore a contradiction in terms: a prolonged period of investigation is essential for an ethnographer to get to know the ways of a culture. Walford (1991:91) touches upon the issue of how long is 'prolonged':
... I eventually spent about 225 hours spread over 29 days at the college, including two staff development days from October until Christmas. I like to think of this as 'compressed ethnography', although there are many who would argue that it is inappropriate to use the term ethnography for such a short period.

It is important to realise that ethnography's requirement of a prolonged period of observation is not driven by quantitative thinking, although it may appear that way. The core issue is the quality of work which can be conducted. Spindler and Spindler (1992:65) define time required not primarily in terms of numbers, but by what degree of understanding the researcher must reach before leaving the field:
[T]he validity of ethnographic observation is based on observation in situ that lasts long enough to permit the ethnographer to see things happen not once but repeatedly. [...] We must observe these happenings often enough so that finally we learn nothing significant by their reoccurrence. A researcher knows when that point has been reached. Then one should observe still longer, to be sure that one's sense of that point in time is not premature nor the result of fatigue.

When they suggest, for example, at least 3 months for "an adequate study of a single classroom", "with observation continuing for a significant portion of every school day", they add that it "would be better if this 3-month period were spread over an entire school year, because some things just do not happen during a 3-month period (Spindler and Spindler 1992:66)". The driving principle is the need for some kind of completeness, which can be achieved through sampling people at different places, and at different times.

4. Researcher As Instrument
Denscombe (1995) points out that much detailed and useful background information on a setting is often subjectively informed, echoing Woods (1994:313), who describes an ethnographer as 'his or her own primary source of data.' Whether the researcher's subjectivity is a weakness or strength is not the issue. Experiencing the world subjectively is a way of life, and not one that we can choose, and is therefore an inevitable feature of the research act.

The ethnographer must aim to keep an open mind about 'what is going on here' and what might be the best ways to talk or write about whatever is being studied. But recognising the presence of subjectivity is not the same as saying 'anything goes'. After all, at the very least, "one begins fieldwork not with a tabula rasa but with a foreshadowed problem in mind" (Wilcox 1982:459), and "one is utilising one's knowledge of existing social theory to guide and inform one's observations" (p. 458). In other words, there is a context - social and sociological - to the context one is studying.

Somehow a balance must be struck between suspending preconceptions and using one's present understandings and beliefs to enquire intelligently. Dey (1993:63-4) puts it this way:
... there is a difference between an open mind and empty head. To analyse data, we need to use accumulated knowledge, not dispense with it. The issue is not whether to use existing knowledge, but how [...] The danger lies not in having assumptions but in not being aware of them ...

To achieve such awareness, and guard against methodological and substantive 'blindness', the ethnographer must work systematically, constantly reviewing the evolution of his or her ideas, reflecting on why particular decisions were made, why certain questions were asked or not asked, why data were generated a particular way and so on. Above all the ethnographer must try to articulate the assumptions and values implicit in the research, and what it means to acknowledge the researcher as part of, rather than outside, the research act. For Hammersley and Atkinson (1995:192), reflexivity, which demands 'the provision of ... a 'natural history' of the research' as experienced and influenced by the researcher, is a 'crucial component of the complete ethnography.' Through this 'reconstructed logic of enquiry' (Hammersley and Atkinson 1995: 21), the ethnographer is able to say what he or she has learnt, and how he or she learnt it.

5. Multiple perspectives
Each person's account of the world is unique. What the researcher offers is an account which can be examined critically and systematically because the means by which it was generated is clearly articulated. It is often in the nature of ethnography that participants' accounts and actions appear to be in the foreground, and that the researcher has managed to 'get out of the way', acting only as 'information broker' (Goodson and Mangan 1996:48). However, whether easily visible or not, it is the researcher who remains the highest authority, who selects from what has been seen and heard, and constructs the final account.
The researcher's power in this respect needs to be tempered for this account to be credible, such that we as readers feel that something of the culture has been illuminated rather than further obscured by the idiosyncrasies of a single observer/commentator. This can - and should be - achieved in at least three ways. First, as suggested earlier, the ethnographer must be culturally open-minded from the start, prepared to challenge his or her own theories and understanding, constantly testing them. This also implies that what people other than the researcher have to say has value as well.

Second, all claims about the culture must be based on some kind of empirical experience of that culture. Such evidence must be presented to or be available to the reader so that he or she can evaluate the claims made by the writer. It is in the nature of ethnography that a wealth of data is generated, recorded and stored; the writer's job is to share with the readers precisely which data have led to a particular claim.

Third, participants hold knowledge about themselves which nobody else has. Thomas (1928:572) argued that 'if men define situations as real, they are real in their consequences.' If this is true, then what people believe to be the reality of their world must be important information in understanding their activities, values, meanings and relationships and in working out 'what is going on'. The most direct means of getting this information is to ask those people. So the researcher's power can also be tempered by seeking multiple perspectives and allowing them to influence the researcher. This has methodological implications:
Rather than relying on a preconceived framework for gathering and analysing data, ethnographers use their interactions with informants to discover and create analytical frameworks for understanding and portraying that which is under study. The procedures used in this direct and intimate acquaintance with the empirical world provide assurance that the data collected are grounded in informants' actual experiences (Gold 1997:399).Hargreaves (1991:11) claims that 'failure to understand the teacher's voice is failure to understand the teacher's teaching'. Perhaps we should also say, failure to understand a social actor's voice is failure to understand the actor's acting. Building accounts of life as seen through the eyes of the actors themselves will almost always challenge existing images of them and what they do. Enabling a relatively unheard voice to come to the attention of a wider audience is always a political act. This becomes even more significant when those individuals are speaking about matters in which they hold unique knowledge and which directly concern them. One could argue that people even have a right to have a say in matters directly affecting them. There are both methodological and ethical implications of highlighting actors' perspectives.

However, as Spindler and Spindler (1992:70) point out, "knowing what natives know is not enough." A researcher may well be able to discover and articulate things about individuals and groups which they cannot see themselves, as well as things which neither the participants or researcher can see at the outset of the study. Moreover, while the traditional ethnographer works on the assumption that group members' knowledge and perspectives are particularly valuable, s/he would also expect to challenge/problematise them ('making the familiar strange'), balancing respect for participant accounts with skepticism and an outsider's perspective. Spindler and Spindler (1992:70) argue that "some of the sociocultural knowledge affecting behaviour and communication in any particular setting being studied is implicit or tacit, not known to some participants and known only ambiguously to others."
Spindler and Spindler (1992:73) believe that there can be a diplomatic (if not methodological) problem with this, for "the implicit is often implicit because it is unacceptable [to members of the culture] at the explicit level." Moreover, the researcher's interpretation or "cultural translation" is "influenced, at least, and transformed, at worst, by [...] theories and models" which are often "extraneous to the cultural knowledge of the native" and therefore regarded as suspect by natives. The ethnographer has to walk a very fine line.

6. Cycle of hypothesis and theory building
The openness which has underpinned many of the elements so far is particularly evident in the ethnographer's constant commitment to modify hypotheses and theories in the light of further data. Gold (1997:395) describes it as the 'running interaction between formulating and testing (and reformulating and retesting).'
In this type of enquiry, developing a theory is not so much an event as a process. As new data emerge, existing hypotheses may prove inadequate, the ethnographer's sense of what needs to be looked at and reported on may change, and explanations of what is going on may be supplanted by ones which seem to fit better. Such an approach is consonant with emergent design, another distinguishing feature of ethnography.

7. Intention And Outcome
An ethnographer asks (though perhaps not in so many words) 'How do things work around here, and what does it mean to be a member of this group?'. S/he aims 'to discover how people in the study area classify or label each other, how they find meaning in activities they care about in life, and how they engage in processes in which they individually and collectively define (antecedents and consequences of) their situations (Gold 1997:391).' Spindler and Spindler (1992:70) hold a similar view:
The object of ethnographic research by anthropologists is to discover the cultural knowledge that people hold in their minds, how it is employed in social interaction, and the consequences of this employment.

Any attempt to generalise findings beyond the case itself should be regarded as suspect, since statistical random sampling is rarely a feature of ethnographic research. Rather, as with other kinds of qualitative work, the intention is to achieve some kind of understanding of a specific case, whether it be a culture, people or setting. Of course, the fact that we publish our findings suggests that we feel they are applicable to other settings and are possibly generalisable in some way, a fact not on lost on either Spindler (1982:8) or Hammersley (1992). The latter suggests that empirical generalisation is possible in some cases if 'typicality' of a defined population at a given time can be established.

In describing the outcome of this kind of research, Denscombe (1995:182) draws attention to the 'storytelling' aspect. An ethnography contains descriptions of local places, snapshots of people's lives and relationships, their inner thoughts and feelings, their outward appearances, anecdotes of personal triumphs and disasters, rules, contradictions and meanings. And at the end of all of this, through a judicious blend of empirical experience, systematic activity and appropriate theory, the ethnographer hopes to construct a coherent story that takes the reader into a deeper and richer appreciation of the people who have been studied. As Wilcox (1982:462) succinctly puts it:

The goal of ethnography is to combine the view of an insider with that of an outsider to describe a social setting. The resulting description is expected to be deeper and fuller than that of the ordinary outsider, and broader and less culture-bound than that of the ordinary insider.

For the ethnographer, partial enculturation is the means by which the final story is reached, and s/he then leaves the field in order to tell other people about what has been learnt; s/he rarely needs or intends to stay around afterwards. What might an ethnographer do differently if he or she expected to become or remain a member of the group beyond the life of the study? What research methods would s/he use, what questions would s/he ask, what story or stories would s/he tell, and how would the findings be disseminated?

It is only by examining what ethnography is - its aims, methods, possibilities and problems - that we can establish what unique contribution it can make to understanding social life, and make decisions about its appropriateness as a investigative strategy for a given research question. No doubt, the term 'ethnography' will continue to be used to describe many different kinds of research activity. Perhaps for some it does not matter that it is used to designate studies which do not have much methodological similarity. Of course, if 'ethnography' comes to mean too many different things to too many different people, then it ceases to be a useful term at all, and we might as well discard it or, at the very least, develop more precise terms to describe the different activities which are supposedly encompassed by the word.

What I have tried to do here is identify the underlying values, practices and identifications which my use of the word is intended to signal. Perhaps one of the most important principles is to gain a deeper understanding of what we might mean by the word 'culture'. So, as an ethnographer, I would like to ask those attending this conference: what is going on here? what does it mean to be a member of this culture? It is not necessary for anyone else to agree with my suggestions, but it might be helpful if, while we are at this ethnographers' convention, we could spend some time talking about what conventions define us as belonging together in one discipline: ethnography.

I believe that ethnography is alive, but I am not so convinced that it is well. There is, without doubt, a culture of ethnographers. It is our job to attend to the culture of ethnography, that is, the care, growth and indeed survival of ethnography as a discipline. In order to do that, we need first, to remind ourselves of its anthropological roots, and second, to move towards a consensual understanding of its defining characteristics that is both flexible enough to respond to a constantly changing research environment and society, and rigorous enough to stand up to the widest possible academic scrutiny.

Many thanks to Geoffrey Walford for numerous helpful discussions and feedback on earlier drafts of this paper; also to Thomas Spielhofer for his detailed and challenging comments. The views expressed and shortcomings, problems and contradictions inherent in this paper are entirely my responsibility!

Deal T.E. (1985) 'The symbolism of effective schools', Elementary School Journal, 85, 5, 601-620 - reprinted in Westoby, A. (Ed.) (1985) Culture and Power in Educational Organisations, Buckingham, Open University Press

Denscombe, M. (1995) 'Teachers as an audience for research: the acceptability of ethnographic approaches to classroom research', Teachers and Teaching: theory and practice, 1, 1, 173-191

Dey, I. (1993) Qualitative data analysis: a user-friendly guide for social scientists, London, Routledge

Gold, R. (1997) 'The ethnographic method in sociology' Qualitative Enquiry, 3, 4, 387-402

Goodson, I. and Mangan, J.M. (1996) 'Exploring alternative perspectives in educational research', Interchange, 27, 1, 41-59

Hammersley, M. (1992) 'The generalisability of ethnography', in What's wrong with ethnography?, London, Routledge, 85-95

Hammersley, M. and Atkinson, P. (1995) Ethnography: Principles in Practice, London, Routledge (first published 1983)

Hargreaves, A. (1991) 'Restructuring restructuring: postmodernity and the prospects for educational change', Unpublished paper, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

Massey, A. and Walford, G. (1998) 'Children Learning: Ethnographers Learning', in

Walford, G. and Massey, A. (Eds.) Children Learning In Context, JAI Press, New York, 1-18

Rist, R.C. (1980) 'Blitzkrieg ethnography: on the transformation of a method into a movement', Educational Researcher, 9, 2, 8-10

Spindler, G. (Ed.) (1982) 'Introduction', in Doing the ethnography of schooling, New York, CBS Publishing, 1-13

Spindler, G and Spindler, L. (1992) 'Cultural process and ethnography: an anthropological perspective', The handbook of qualitative research in education, London/New York, Academic Press, 53-

Thomas, W.I. (1928) The child in America, New York, Knopf Walford, G. (ed.) (1991) Doing Educational Research, London, Routledge

Wilcox, K. (1982) 'Ethnography as a methodology and its application to the study of schooling: a review', in Spindler, G. (Ed.) Doing the ethnography of schooling, New York, CBS Publishing, 456-488

Woods, P. (1994) 'Collaborating in historical ethnography: researching critical events in education', International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 7, 4, 309-321

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Embodied Films

Sensory Scenes: Opening of Apocalypse Now Opening of Gangs of New York/sound effects of Jaws and Friday the 13th and The Exorcist Blue -- musical sensory moments Opening of Blue Velvet Tracking shot in Code Unknown Tracking shot of high school entrance in Donnie Darko Opening scene of Goodfellas, the tracking shot of the first date, the paranoia at the end The Matrix -- the removal of the jack, the training, and the interrogation of morpheus Illness: A Beautiful Mind Contagion Sexuality: Before Sunrise Blue is the Warmest Color A Dangerous Method Harold and Maude The Night Porter Nymphomaniac Rust and Bone Shortbus Criminality: A Clockwork Orange Gomorrah Truth/Authenticity: Fog of War The Thin Blue Line Identity/Memory: 2001: A Space Odyssey Adaptation Bladerunner Being John Malkovich Dogtooth Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Even the Rain Grizzly Man Her Human Nature Hunger La' Commune Let the Right One In (Ideological Becoming) Body: 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days Bamboozled (guide in gmail) Boys Don't Cry (guide in gmail) Gattica (Eugenics lecture in Gmail) Human Nature Priscilla, Queen of the Desert Violence: The Act of Killing The Addiction (Presentation in Gmail) The Battle of Algiers Cache City of God City of Life and Death Demonlover (Global flows of capitalism) Do the Right Thing (Discursive violence as a prelude to physical violence) Funny Games Hostel Jarhead Night and Fog The Passion of the Christ Salo Saw Standard Operating Procedure (emphasis on the mediated representation) Tarantino films Zero Dark Thirty Environment: Exit Through the Gift Shop Slam

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Mexican Feast

Chipolte Peach Salsa

Smoky Pork Tinga (Mexican Everyday Cookbook pg 191-193)

Grilled Chicken Thighs and Breasts with Yucatecan Spices (Mexican Everyday Cookbook pg 171-173)

Roasted Fresh Chile Salsa (Mexican Everyday pg 158-159)

Barbacoa (Shredded Beef) (The Mexican Slow Cooker pg 97)

Yucatan Shrimp Tacos

Rocket Fuel salsa

Spicy Fish Tacos w/ Cabbage Slaw Lime Crema [or Killer Fish Tacos ]

Margaritas http://www.afamilyfeast.com/margaritas/ Guacamole http://www.afamilyfeast.com/guacamole/ Salsa http://www.afamilyfeast.com/salsa/ Mango Cilantro Mojitos http://ahouseinthehills.com/2014/07/07/mango-cilantro-mojitos/ Watermelon Salad

Friday, May 30, 2014

Resources for May 30, 2014

"If you're not angry, you're either a stone... or you're too sick to be angry." - Maya Angelou

"End Mass Incarceration Now!" The New York Times (May 25, 2014)

Center for Constitutional Rights: "Iraq Veterans Against the War has released The Fort Hood Report, a snapshot in time of the largest Army post in the country, from the height of its deployment cycle to the recent drawdown. It includes 31 in-depth testimonials from Fort Hood veterans, soldiers and family members who lived through the trauma of that time. Read their stories here."

Johnson, Nicholas. "Negroes and the Gun." After Words (January 18, 2014) ["Fordham Law School Professor Nicholas Johnson talks about his book, [Negroes and the Gun], in which he argues that there is an unreported tradition of African Americans using firearms to defend their families and communities."]

Dialogic Cinephilia archives:

Resources for May 25, 2014

Resources for May 27, 2014

“This is the only story of mine whose moral I know. I don’t think it’s a marvelous moral; I simply happen to know what it is: We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.” -- Kurt Vonnegut, Mother Night (1961)

Nocera, Joe. "Holiday Weekend Gun Report: May 23-26, 2014." The New York Times (May 27, 2014)

bricolage \bree-koh-LAHZH\

noun: construction (as of a sculpture or a structure of ideas) achieved by using whatever comes to hand; also : something constructed in this way


Knowing that the motor was assembled from a hasty bricolage of junk parts, Raphael had little hope that it would run effectively.

"Hustad reconstructs the past through a bricolage of interviews, letters, newspaper articles, Bible verses, prayers and anecdotes…." — From a book review by Justin St. Germain in The New York Times, March 23, 2014

According to French social anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss, the artist "shapes the beautiful and useful out of the dump heap of human life." Lévi-Strauss compared this artistic process to the work of a handyman who solves technical or mechanical problems with whatever materials are available. He referred to that process of making do as "bricolage," a term derived from the French verb "bricoler" (meaning "to putter about") and related to "bricoleur," the French name for a jack-of-all-trades. "Bricolage" made its way from French to English during the 1960s, and it is now used for everything from the creative uses of leftovers ("culinary bricolage") to the cobbling together of disparate computer parts ("technical bricolage").

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Resources for May 22, 2014

Bergen, Benjamin K. "The New Science of Meaning." Huffington Post (December 11, 2012)

Dialogic Cinephilia archives:

Resources for May 16, 2014

Resources for May 21, 2014

Morgan, James. "'Biggest dinosaur ever' discovered." BBC (May 16, 2014)

Rich, Nathaniel. "Authenticity All Right: Lee Friedlander’s New Orleans." New York Review of Books (May 16, 2014)

“What is the purpose of writing music? One is, of course, not dealing with purposes but dealing with sounds. Or the answer must take the form of a paradox: a purposeful purposeless or a purposeless play. This play, however, is an affirmation of life--not an attempt to bring order out of chaos nor to suggest improvements in creation, but simply a way of waking up to the very life we’re living, which is so excellent once one gets one’s mind and one’s desires out of its way and lets it act of its own accord.” ― John Cage, Silence: Lectures and Writings (1961)

"There are two parts to the human dilemma. One is the belief that the end justifies the means. That push-button philosophy, that deliberate deafness to suffering has become the monster in the war machine. The other is the betrayal of the human spirit. The assertion of dogma closes the mind and turns a nation, a civilization into a regiment of ghosts — obedient ghosts, or tortured ghosts." -- Jacob Bronowski, Ascent of Man (1973)

Gottschalk, Peter. "American Heretics: Catholics, Jews, Muslims and the History of Religious Intolerance." After Words (December 28, 2013) ["Peter Gottschalk talks about his book, American Heretics: Catholics, Jews, Muslims and the History of Religious Intolerance, in which he argues that religious intolerance has been strong in America since the middle of the nineteenth century."]

Levin, Yuval. "The Great Debate." After Words (January 4, 2014) ["Yuval Levin, founder and editor of National Affairs, talks about his book, The Great Debate, in which he discusses the origin of the political Left-Right divide, arguing that today's partisanship began with the debates over the French Revolution."]

Friday, May 16, 2014

Resources for May 16, 2014

Dialogic Cinephilia archives:

Resources for May 12, 2014

The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975 (Sweden: Göran Olsson, 2011)

House, Silas. "Beshear lawsuit embarrasses state, tarnishes his legacy; Backward thinking on Ky.'s gay-marriage ban." Lexington Herald-Leader (May 13, 2014)

Roy, Arundhati. "Capitalism: A Ghost Story" We Are Many (March 26, 2014 at The New School in NYC) ["From the poisoned rivers, barren wells, and clear-cut forests, to the hundreds of thousands of farmers who have committed suicide to escape punishing debt, to the hundreds of millions of people who live on less than two dollars a day, there are ghosts nearly everywhere you look in India. India is a nation of 1.2 billion, but the country’s 100 richest people own assets equivalent to one-fourth of India’s gross domestic product. Capitalism: A Ghost Story examines the dark side of democracy in contemporary India, and shows how the demands of globalized capitalism has subjugated billions of people to the highest and most intense forms of racism and exploitation."]

Drone Survival Guide [Website: "Our ancestors could spot natural predators from far by their silhouettes. Are we equally aware of the predators in the present-day? Drones are remote-controlled planes that can be used for anything from surveillance and deadly force, to rescue operations and scientific research. Most drones are used today by military powers for remote-controlled surveillance and attack, and their numbers are growing. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) predicted in 2012 that within 20 years there could be as many as 30.000 drones flying over U.S. Soil alone. As robotic birds will become commonplace in the near future, we should be prepared to identify them. This survival guide is an attempt to familiarise ourselves and future generations, with a changing technological environment. This document contains the silhouettes of the most common drone species used today and in the near future. Each indicating nationality and whether they are used for surveillance only or for deadly force. All drones are drawn in scale for size indication. From the smallest consumer drones measuring less than 1 meter, up to the Global Hawk measuring 39,9 meter in length."]

Crockford, Kade. "San Francisco Woman Pulled Out of Car at Gunpoint Because of License Plate Reader Error." Free Future (May 13, 2014)

Angier, Natalie. "Abstract Thoughts? The Body Takes Them Literally." The New York Times (February 2, 2010)

Merriam-Webster Word-of-the-Day

eidetic \eye-DET-ik\

adjective: marked by or involving extraordinarily accurate and vivid recall especially of visual images


Thanks to her eidetic memory, Kirsten was able to recall every last detail of what happened that night, including the colors of each person's outfit.

"Jason Bateman, making his feature directing debut after directing episodes of his 'Arrested Development' series, plays an adult who uses a loophole to enter a spelling bee and whose eidetic memory all but guarantees he will win if he chooses." — From a movie review by Duane Dudek in the Journal Sentinel (Milwaukee), March 27, 2014