Posts Tagged ‘culture’

Adrian Piper 1991 exhibit Decide Who You Are-"Skinned Alive"

Adrian Piper 1991 exhibit Decide Who You Are-“Skinned Alive”


Adrian Piper is a first-generation conceptual artist and analytic philosopher who was born in New York City and lived for many years on Cape Cod, Massachusetts before emigrating from the United States to Germany. She began exhibiting her artwork internationally at the age of twenty, graduating from the School of Visual Arts in 1969 with an A.A. in Fine Art and a concentration in painting and sculpture. While continuing to produce and exhibit her artwork, Piper received a B.A. Summa Cum Laude with Research Honors in Philosophy and a minor in Medieval and Renaissance Musicology from the City College of New York in 1974. For graduate school in philosophy she attended Harvard University, where she received an M.A. in 1977 and a Ph.D. in 1981 under the supervision of John Rawls.

self portrait

self portrait

She also studied Kant and Hegel with Dieter Henrich at the University of Heidelberg in 1977-1978. Her formal education lasted a total of 27 years. Piper taught philosophy at Georgetown, Harvard, Michigan, Stanford, UCSD, and Wellesley College. Following in the steps of trailblazing pioneer Dr. Joyce Mitchell Cook, in 1987 she became the first tenured African American woman professor in the field of philosophy. But for her refusal to return to the United States while listed as a Suspicious Traveler on the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s Watch List, Wellesley forcibly terminated her tenured full professorship in philosophy in 2008. Since 2005, she has lived and worked in Berlin Germany, where she runs the APRA Foundation Berlin and edits The Berlin Journal of Philosophy.

Adrian Piper is also bi-racial. Much of the early focus of her artwork, became the interpersonal dynamics of racism and racial stereotyping, as seen here, in her video installation, “Cornered” (1988).



Works that further explore racial themes include her pencil drawing “Self-Portrait Exaggerating My Negroid Features” (1981); her collective performance and video “Funk Lessons” (1982-4); her unannounced “Calling Card” interactive performances (1986–1990); her mixed media installation “Close to Home” (1987); her video installation Cornered (1988); and Vanilla Nightmares (1986–1989), her series of racially and sexually transgressive charcoal drawings on pages of the New York Times. Her first retrospective in 1987 at the Alternative Museum in New York, reintroduced the art public and a new generation of viewers to the media, strategies and preoccupations of first-generation Conceptual art.

And yet Piper is also well-known for her principal philosophical publications in metaethics, Kant, and the history of ethics. Her scholarly two-volume study in Kantian metaethics, “Rationality and the Structure of the Self, Volume I: The Humean Conception” and “Rationality and the Structure of the Self, Volume II: A Kantian Conception”, was accepted for publication by Cambridge University Press in 2008. “Rationality and the Structure of the Self” was the culmination of 34 years of work.

A multi-faceted woman and creative genius, Adrian Piper founded the Adrian Piper Research Archive (APRA) in 2002, after being diagnosed with a chronic, progressive, and incurable medical condition. Although the condition had vanished within two years after she emigrated to Germany in 2005, she continued to develop APRA as a personal and public resource for students, scholars, curators, collectors, writers, and members of the general public who have a constructive curiosity or scholarly or professional interest in her work and life.



It is amazing for that one who’s talents and knowledge have been so demonstrated, that physical features such as skin color could ever play a negative role in her life.

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Andy Torres explains “ego blogging” her coined term for what now has become commonplace on the internet, but which she was one of the originators of, back in 2007. Undecided as to her career path, she dropped out of college at a certain point, to pursue her real dream of creating and developing fashion ideas. Taking her love of sewing and modifying outfits, she moved to New York to try to make it as a designer. But when she didn’t find the opportunity she desired at an existing fashion house, she went online. Andy marketed herself and her fashion ideas through her blog, Style Scrapbook, which has since garnered over 75,000 followers…an impressive feat for any company, let alone a single girl.

Andy’s advice to anyone starting their own ego blog is simple.
1. Offer great content, which is useful to the target audience.
2. Include good photos which depict the subject in the best context.
3. Post often, to maintain contact with an audience with short attention span.
4. Share your blog on as many strong social media sites as possible.
5. Above all be yourself, and keep your content genuine and accessible.

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A new way to blog! I’ve now connected StarintheStone to Bloglovin as a new way to connect.
I’d like to invite my followers to join me there as well and keep on lovin’ our blogs! lol

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The other day I was looking for some images of that face you see, of a cloud blowing, which represented the wind coming from various directions on old cartographic maps. I didn’t quite find the face symbol I was looking for. But I did find some unusual old maps, representing the world as it was known back in medeival days, just before the Enlightenment, and active trade and exploration.

What I immediately noticed, about both the maps below, was that although the Americas had quite a significant part of the maps carved out for them, surprisingly it was Europe itself, which seemed to be missing or inaccurate to say the least. And although the myriad of islands around the Phillipines and Malaysia had representation as well as Japan, China was quite noticeably lacking, as well as a good portion of Russia. This surprised me, because I thought that trade routes overland to the Orient had existed as long as the Middle East, and even Europeans fighting Crusades in the Holy Lands would have known of the Silk Road to and from China… Yet what was the reason for China’s under-representation on the European maps of the day?

I can only think of one reason, and that was that the purpose of these maps seemed to be delineating oceanscapes and sea-routes as much as accurately mapping landscapes. Rivers, the headwaters of exploration inroads into uncharted territory, were frequently marked moreso than mountains inland. Russia, known as “northern India” on the Visscher map showed numerous tributaries. And the bifurcated source of the Nile, deep in Africa was marked, well before Livingstone ever got there. But China seemed to be missing.

Was it because the Red Empire, whose dynasties existed for centuries well before monarchies in the west, rejected European contact and prevented trade and exploration by these outsiders as a matter of policy? Therefore it was not the fault of the Europeans, for finding the place, but having found themselves rejected at the door, they couldn’t put any data on their maps at the time. Therefore in a strange twist of fate, China, which had pre-existed Europe for centuries, by rejecting the Europeans, was left off of their map of “the known world” and remained isolated from the encroaching Eurocentric reality around it. In a real since, China “did not exist”, in the European world, as well as on the European maps of the time.


Munster map 1542

Visscher cartography 1658

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At the time, I had no knowledge of the rotten eggs, the nose-pinching, the strange places Icelanders take automobiles, nor many of the other quaint and, frankly, weird passions of the Icelandic people, and I just thought Einar was a bit odd. At the time, I didn’t realize eccentricity was a national characteristic. Nor that it was contagious.
I started wondering about the Icelandic temperament when Einar Gustavsson advised me to eat trout smoked in burning horse manure. As a tourism official whose job is to convince Americans to visit Iceland, he did not tell me about the rotten duck eggs, or “hard-fish.” But he couldn’t restrain himself on the subject of the smoked fish.

“This is so good, you wouldn’t believe how natural and wonderful it is,” he told me on the phone.
“Horse shit,” I said, to be sure.

“Some horse manure, some wood,” he said appeasingly. “Mostly wood.”

Such was my introduction to Iceland, a Pennsylvania-sized island formed by a giant attack of planetary dyspepsia, and inhabited by the boisterous-yet-bookish descendants of the Vikings.

Although videos are making inroads, Icelanders are reputed to read more books than anyone else on the planet. They have always been wordy folk. Even when their young democracy wobbled out of control, leading to horrible poverty that lasted from the 12th century through the 19th, Icelanders held the touchstone of their language. Through the winter nights, they huddled in damp, turf-and-stone huts, reading the sagas aloud. In the worst of times, brought by Danish exploitation and vomiting ash that smothered the grass and starved the livestock, they ate their beautifully illustrated calfskin books, and went back to telling the sagas from memory.

This linguistic tenacity has paid a peculiar dividend: The Icelandic language has hardly changed in a thousand years, meaning that Icelanders can still read their ancient literature. These days, to protect the historic tongue from the epidemic of Global Culture Fade, a panel of Icelanders is charged with inventing new terms as needed. The telephone, for example, is a simi, or “thread.” A fax is a simibref, or “phone letter.”

continue reading

Cultural Immersion & Heritage In Iceland & Iceland – Finding Your Inner Viking | Away.com.

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Words of wisdom from 90 year old Ilana Royce Smithkin, interviewed by Ari Seth Cohen…


And there are more bits and bites on Ari’s blog Advanced Style –
Ilona Smithkin: Wisdom From a 90 year old Lady.


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Ari Seth Cohen has written a book, proving couture worn by women over sixty can be just as, if not more stylish, than that worn by younger women. Here are some examples of stylish women flaunting their sense of style.

I’d also love to flaunt these looks, if I could afford to! I guess bravery comes with age.

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the signs of the times

signature of the city



on walls

and everywhere



and concerns in color



big and WILD! —

almost child-



with pride

the tribe inscribes

their abode

and makes it Home —


a man-made birthmark

anguished art

city’s soul

spilled in writing

on any vacant wall


I am Here and I am Now :

Look at me!

See me!

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| Capital Lifestyle. reblog

 Heard of ‘The Obedient Wife Club’?

June 3, 2011 – A group of Malaysian Muslim women say they will fight divorce, domestic violence and other problems — by appealing to wives to be more obedient, one of the organisers has said.

Maznah Taufik said “The Obedient Wife Club” being launched on Saturday is aimed at drawing women who will be taught how to please their husbands better to prevent them from straying or misbehaving.

“We just want to ask all the wives to be obedient wives so that there will be fewer problems in our society,” such as infidelity, divorce and domestic violence, she told AFP.

“Obedient wife means they are trying to entertain their husbands, not only taking care of their food and clothes,” Maznah said. “They have to obey their husbands. That’s the way Islam also asks.”


Malaysia is a Muslim-majority country, with some 60 percent of the population practicing the religion, alongside large ethnic Chinese and Indian communities who are mostly Buddhist, Hindu and Christian.

According to local media, the country’s divorce rate doubled from 2002 to 2009, with rates higher among Muslims than non-Muslims.

Maznah said it was also the men’s responsibility to teach their wives to be obedient.

“Some wives, they just want to get married for leisure but they don’t know the responsibility,” she said.

“To entertain their husbands is compulsory. If she doesn’t do this, the husband will look for another woman… and the house will break down.”

Saturday’s launch near the capital Kuala Lumpur will include speeches and a show to demonstrate to women how to be good wives, Maznah said, adding that a similar club was set up in Jordan last month.

Maznah is already involved in another controversial venture — the Ikhwan Polygamy Club, which was launched in 2009 to promote polygamy. Muslim men in Malaysia can take up to four wives.

She is herself in a polygamous marriage, as the second of her husband’s two wives.

In 2010, a study by a Muslim activist group found men in polygamous relationships find it difficult to meet the needs of all their wives and children, and that the result is often unhappy and cash-strapped families.

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Shhhh…everyone be quiet, listen up; the POTUS is on deck. But for some reason, that is not reassuring to me.

As I listened to Obama, I couldn’t help but make the analogy to a preacher at the pulpit. And as I observed the congressional representatives rising and clapping, I could almost imagine them with pom poms, jumping like elated cheerleaders at a football rally. No matter what their man said, they would support him. And Joe Biden, on the dais behind Obama, smiling and nodding his “amen”. Did I imagine it, or did Susan Pelosi the Speaker of the House seem as though she was going to cry?

But for me, Obama’s words rang empty. He seems to say what people want to hear, and present himself as a strong leader, but seems hollow to me. I don’t think he grasps with his heart the context of the history of the US constitution. Because he has a motivation to be an equalizer of the people of the country, he may be undermining the legality of the existing structure of the government of the country and why certain laws are in place in our system of checks and balances. Briefly he mentioned that if certain bills he suggests are not to his specifications, he would use the power of veto. Which is within his powers, true. But it seems he is more interested in throwing his weight around than in letting economic principles take their course…

There seems to be some confusion as to the economic route to take, the difference between Hayekian and Keynesian philosophies–whether to let capitalism and a free market regulate itself with possibility of choppy waters, or whether to engage in selective bailouts and government aid with increasing possibility of government at the helm. But ironically, he would as easily slap fees or taxes on the banks bailed out, to effect repayment of their loans. And although he said “it was hard to do”, the trillion dollar “economic stimulus package” was as easy as signing a paper, at the same time promising the burden would not be passed on to future generations of American citizens.

Where does the money come from? Obama continued to promise (paraphrased) that “in a country as great as America, no citizens should go without access to higher education, and availability of Pell grants would be increased to assist students, as well as tax relief.” Is education to be guaranteed then, for everyone? What are the other “rights” of American citizenship? He briefly glossed over any responsibilities associated with those ‘rights’. Is there a difference between a ‘right’ and an ‘opportunity’?
Similarly, can we regard healthcare as a ‘right’ of citizenship, or is it merely a priviledge accorded those who can afford it?

And arguing that those who have incomes below $250,000 would have no higher taxes, was laughable. Persons living (subsisting) on one tenth that income at the $25,000 level of teachers and minimum wage employees, should rest assured that they would not pay more tax than someone earning ten times as much?

The trouble with Obama’s hopes of equalizing the disparities between the US’s citizens, is that in providing equality, rather than “opportunity of access”, creates a conflict of the motivation of capitalism. Like it or not, Obama’s goals smack of socialism, the only drawback of levelling the playing field.

According to socialist thought, the inherent problems of capitalism lie in ” monopoly, business cycles, unemployment, unequally distributed wealth, and the economic exploitation of workers.” Unfortunately, what “made America great” was due in part to these very things. JP Morgan wouldn’t have invested in building America’s railroads if he didn’t think he could profit by it. Nor Andrew Carnegie have invested in steel production if environmental restrictions had been in effect to hinder him. In capitalism and the practice of free enterprise, the benefit to America is in the long run, and sometimes results are not obtained immediately with palliative short term fixes.

The benefit of socialism, is security for the citizenry. But the price paid for security is the loss of freedom to seize opportunity to profit for oneself. Whether this is moral or environmentally correct, profit is the reward for effort in capitalism, and it is the profits which have provided the benefits which have made America the great nation we claim it to be. Profit and freedom of opportunity are the reasons people come from foreign countries to make a new start in ours. And the lack of these opportunities in more restrictive governments is not as attractive.

The more America adopts restrictions and increases government involvement in enterprise, the more we move away from capitalist economics.

Economically, socialism denotes an economic system of state ownership and/or worker ownership of the means of production and distribution. In the Soviet Union, state ownership of the means of production was combined with central planning, in relation to which goods and services to make and provide, how they were to be produced, the quantities, and the sale prices.”

Centralized government control and regulation. Were we only joking that for a moment it looked as though Obama made himself the head of GM while he fired the ceo? Did we watch the government bailout Chrysler and several banks as though it were playing Father Knows Best? Is it really Obama’s place to “fix it” for us? Scary.

Scarier, is that

A December 2008 Rasmussen poll found that when asked whether Americans supported a state-managed economy or a free-market economy, 70% preferred free-market capitalism, with only 15% preferring a state-managed economy.[83] An April 2009 Rasmussen Reports poll, conducted during the Financial crisis of 2007–2010, suggested that there had been a growth of support for socialism in the United States. The poll results stated that 53% of American adults thought capitalism was better than socialism, and that “Adults under 30 are essentially evenly divided: 37% prefer capitalism, 33% socialism, and 30% are undecided”.

Looks like we’re forgetting exactly what makes America great.

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