starlady: the cover from Shaun Tan's The Arrival, showing an aquanaut in suburbia (i'm a stranger here myself)
[personal profile] starlady
One of my ongoing personal hangups is the fact that the ancient world was not like our modern world (and I'm using "modern" here with extreme intent); subjectivity and the relations between polities were completely different, and our projections back onto the past don't match that past. (This is part of what Prasenjit Duara means when he talks about rescuing history from modernity.) Ancient societies had far more in common with each other than we might think (and they were also far more diverse than we might think); they also had more in common with us than we might think, though in different respects.

So I was delighted to learn that further analysis has revealed that the Ivory Bangle lady of York, a wealthy resident of the Roman town there in the 3rd century, was of North African extraction.

I'm sure most people have heard by now of the magnitude 8.8 earthquake that occurred off the coast of Chile early this morning. Phil Plait at Bad Astronomy has some striking geological analysis and visual tsunami projections. I hope for the best in Chile, and that people around the Pacific, particularly in Hawai'i, are able to heed the warnings in time.

Actually this might go in the category "speaking ill of the dead," which is something to which I don't have intrinsic objections, especially for public figures. [ profile] doonesburyc has a darkly funny roundup of classic cartoons related to the late Alexander Haig.

I'm surprised that the Lower Merion school webcam fracas hasn't been getting more press in the media. [personal profile] naraht has a post quoting some bloggers here; local public radio station WHYY has the best coverage I've heard/seen in the area. Essentially, the Lower Merion school district (allegedly) used the webcams installed on the laptops it distributed to students to spy on them in their homes and then attempted to use the pictures it obtained to discipline students in school. As I said to [personal profile] naraht, I can't decide whether the part that boggles me most is the parents who aren't concerned or the parents who are concerned--that the lawsuits being brought against the school district will cost them money in taxes.

And finally, on a musical note, the Philadelphia Orchestra musicians have accepted a pay cut and a hiring freeze. I was headed off at the pass, as it were, at the start of my "Philadelphia Orchestra & its woes" rant to [personal profile] naraht by the subway schedule last Sunday, and I'm only slowly converting it into a post, but suffice it to say that this is potentially both good and bad. And if it doesn't bring in the $$ it will be very, very, bad.

Do I need a history tag?  
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