It seems we have forgotten the true meaning of many words that are important in modern media, communications and in practicing ‘free speech’.
Too many words have had their meaning changed through abuse, misuse or plain ignorance. Our words are crucially important in communicating our thoughts, responses, opinions and protests, as humanity is made aware of the harm done by blindly satisfying economic growth and personal greed. Through abuse of narrative and debate ‘Fake’ value systems have been forced upon us, destroying our true consciousness and wellbeing. We must take voice and articulate, through ALL mediums, our concerns, our grievances and solutions clearly and honestly with, and to, those that have such ‘power’ over our societies, communities, and our way of life.
Karma – is a word with a very relevant meaning and message to us all – that we get what we give – good and bad.
Ubuntu (Zulu pronunciation: [ùɓúntʼù]) is a NguniBantu term meaning “humanity”. It is sometimes translated as “I am because we are”, or “humanity towards others”, or in Zuluumuntu ngumuntu ngabantu, in Xhosa, umntu ngumntu ngabantu but is often used in a more philosophical sense to mean “the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity”.. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubuntu_philosophy
There are various definitions of ubuntu. The most recent definition was provided by the African Journal of Social Work (AJSW). The journal defined ubuntu as:
A collection of values and practices that Black people of Africa or of African origin view as making people authentic human beings. While the nuances of these values and practices vary across different ethnic groups, they all point to one thing – an authentic individual human being is part of a larger and more significant relational, communal, societal, environmental and spiritual world
There are many different (and not always compatible) definitions of what ubuntu is (for a survey of how ubuntu is defined among South Africans see Gade 2012: “What is Ubuntu? Different Interpretations among South Africans of African Descent”).
Ubuntu asserts that society, not a transcendent being, gives human beings their humanity. An example is a Zulu-speaking person who when commanding to speak in Zulu would say “khuluma isintu“, which means “speak the language of people”. When someone behaves according to custom, a Sotho-speaking person would say “ke motho“, which means “he/she is a human”. The aspect of this that would be exemplified by a tale told (often, in private quarters) in Nguni “kushone abantu ababili ne Shangaan“, in Sepedi “go tlhokofetje batho ba babedi le leShangane“, in English (two people died and one Shangaan). In each of these examples, humanity comes from conforming to or being part of the tribe.
According to Michael Onyebuchi Eze, the core of ubuntu can best be summarised as follows:
A person is a person through other people strikes an affirmation of one’s humanity through recognition of an “other” in his or her uniqueness and difference. It is a demand for a creative intersubjective formation in which the “other” becomes a mirror (but only a mirror) for my subjectivity. This idealism suggests to us that humanity is not embedded in my person solely as an individual; my humanity is co-substantively bestowed upon the other and me. Humanity is a quality we owe to each other. We create each other and need to sustain this otherness creation. And if we belong to each other, we participate in our creations: we are because you are, and since you are, definitely I am. The “I am” is not a rigid subject, but a dynamic self-constitution dependent on this otherness creation of relation and distance.
An “extroverted communities” aspect is the most visible part of this ideology. There is sincere warmth with which people treat both strangers and members of the community. This overt display of warmth is not merely aesthetic but enables the formation of spontaneous communities. The resultant collaborative work within these spontaneous communities transcends the aesthetic and gives functional significance to the value of warmth. How else are you to ask for sugar from your neighbour? Warmth is not the sine qua non of community formation but guards against instrumentalist relationships. Unfortunately, sincere warmth may leave one vulnerable to those with ulterior motives.
“Ubuntu” as political philosophy encourages community equality, propagating the distribution of wealth. This socialisation is a vestige of agrarian peoples as a hedge against the crop failures of individuals. Socialisation presupposes a community population with which individuals empathise and concomitantly, have a vested interest in its collective prosperity. Urbanisation and the aggregation of people into an abstract and bureaucratic state undermines this empathy. African Intellectual historians like Michael Onyebuchi Eze have argued however that this idea of “collective responsibility” must not be understood as absolute in which the community’s good is prior to the individual’s good. On this view, ubuntu it is argued, is a communitarian philosophy that is widely differentiated from the Western notion of communitarian socialism. In fact, ubuntu induces an ideal of shared human subjectivity that promotes a community’s good through an unconditional recognition and appreciation of individual uniqueness and difference. Audrey Tang has suggested that Ubuntu “implies that everyone has different skills and strengths; people are not isolated, and through mutual support they can help each other to complete themselves.”
“Redemption” relates to how people deal with errant, deviant, and dissident members of the community. The belief is that man is born formless like a lump of clay. It is up to the community, as a whole, to use the fire of experience and the wheel of social control to mould him into a pot that may contribute to society. Any imperfections should be borne by the community and the community should always seek to redeem man. An example of this is the statement by the African National Congress (in South Africa) that it does not throw out its own but rather redeems.
Other scholars such as Mboti (2015) argue that the normative definition of Ubuntu, notwithstanding its intuitive appeal, is still open to doubt. The definition of Ubuntu, contends Mboti, has remained consistently and purposely fuzzy, inadequate and inconsistent. Mboti rejects the interpretation that Africans are “naturally” interdependent and harmony-seeking, and that humanity is given to a person by and through other persons. He sees a philosophical trap in attempts to elevate harmony to a moral duty – a sort of categorical imperative – that Africans must simply uphold. Mboti cautions against relying on intuitions in attempts to say what Ubuntu is or is not. He concludes that the phrase umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu references a messier, undisciplined relationship between persons, stating that “First, there is value in regarding a broken relationship as being authentically human as much as a harmonious relationship. Second, a broken relationship can be as ethically desirable as a harmonious one. For instance, freedom follows from a break from oppression. Finally, harmonious relations can be as oppressive and false as disharmonious ones. For instance, the cowboy and his horse are in a harmonious relationship.”
simple | ˈsɪmp(ə)l | adjective (simpler, simplest)
1 easily understood or done; presenting no difficulty: a simple solution | camcorders are now so simple to operate. • [attributive] used to emphasize the fundamental and straightforward nature of something: the simple truth.
2 plain, basic, or uncomplicated in form, nature, or design; without much decoration or ornamentation: a simple white blouse | the house is furnished in a simple country style. • humble and unpretentious: a quiet unassuming man with simple tastes.
3 composed of a single element; not compound. • Mathematics denoting a group that has no proper normal subgroup. • Botany (of a leaf or stem) not divided or branched. • (of a lens, microscope, etc.) consisting of a single lens or component. • (in English grammar) denoting a tense formed without an auxiliary, for example sang as opposed to was singing. • (of interest) payable on the sum loaned only. Compare with compound1.
4 of very low intelligence. noun mainly historical
a medicinal herb, or a medicine made from one: the gatherers of simples. exclamation used to convey that something is very straightforward: I don’t overanalyse. I listen, I like, I buy. Simple! DERIVATIVES simpleness noun ORIGIN Middle English: from Old French, from Latin simplus. The noun sense (mid 16th century) originally referred to a medicine made from one constituent, especially from one plant.
1 It sounds difficult I know, but it’s really pretty simple: straightforward, easy, uncomplicated, uninvolved, effortless, painless, manageable, undemanding, unexacting, elementary, child’s play, plain sailing, a five-finger exercise, nothing; informal as easy as falling off a log, as easy as pie, as easy as ABC, a piece of cake, a cinch, a snip, easy-peasy, no sweat, a doddle, a pushover, money for old rope, money for jam, kids’ stuff, a breeze, a doss, a cakewalk; North American informal duck soup, a snap; Australian New Zealand informal a bludge, a snack; South African informal a piece of old tackle; British vulgar slang a piece of piss.
ANTONYMS difficult, hard, demanding, complicated
2 The chapter on finance explains in simple language how a profit and loss account is compiled: clear, plain, straightforward, clearly expressed, intelligible, comprehensible, uncomplicated, understandable, (words) of one syllable, lucid, coherent, unambiguous, direct, accessible, uninvolved; informal user-friendly.
3 A simple white blouse | a simple, square house in Bath stone: plain, unadorned, undecorated, unembellished, unornamented, without ornament/ornamentation, unelaborate, unpretentious, unostentatious, unfussy, no-nonsense, basic, modest, unsophisticated, penny plain, without frills, honest, homely, homespun, everyday, workaday; stark, severe, spartan, austere, chaste, spare, bare; muted, unpatterned, patternless; classic, understated, uncluttered, clean, restrained;
North American homestyle; informal no-frills.
ANTONYMS fancy, elaborate
4 the simple fact is that stray dogs are a menace | she was overcome at last by simple exhaustion: basic, fundamental; mere, sheer, pure, pure and simple.
5 she wondered how he would react if she told him the simple truth: candid, frank, honest, direct, sincere, plain, absolute, unqualified, bald, stark, naked, blunt, unadorned, unvarnished, unembellished.
6 simple country people: unpretentious, unsophisticated, ordinary, unaffected, unassuming, natural, honest-to-goodness, modest, homely, wholesome, humble, quiet, lowly, rustic; innocent, artless, guileless, childlike, naive, ingenuous, gullible, inexperienced; North American cracker-barrel; informal green.
ANTONYMS pretentious, affected
7 simple chemical substances: non-compound, non-complex, uncompounded, uncombined, unmixed, unblended, unalloyed, pure, basic, single, elementary, fundamental. ANTONYMS compound
noun 1 individuals should enjoy the liberty to pursue their own interests and preferences: freedom, independence, free rein, freeness, licence, self-determination; free will, latitude, option, choice; volition, non-compulsion, non-coercion, non-confinement; leeway, margin, scope, elbow room.
2 parliamentary government is the essence of British liberty: independence, freedom, autonomy, sovereignty, self government, self rule, self determination, home rule; civil liberties, civil rights, human rights; rare autarky.
3 no man who was born free would be contented to be penned up and denied the liberty to go where he pleases: right, birthright, opportunity, facility, prerogative, entitlement, privilege, permission, sanction, leave, consent, authorization, authority, licence, clearance, blessing, dispensation, exemption, faculty; French carte blanche.
1 he was at liberty for three months before he was recaptured: free, on the loose, loose, set loose, at large, unconfined, roaming; unbound, untied, unchained, unshackled, unfettered, unrestrained, unrestricted, wild, untrammelled; escaped, out; informal sprung.
in captivity; imprisoned
2 your great aunt was at liberty to divide her estate how she chose: free, permitted, allowed, authorized, able, entitled, eligible, fit; unconstrained, unrestricted, unhindered, without constraint.
forbidden, take liberties
3 you’ve already taken too many liberties with me: act with overfamiliarity, act with familiarity, show disrespect, act with impropriety, act indecorously, be impudent, commit a breach of etiquette, act with boldness, act with impertinence, show insolence, show impudence, show presumptuousness, show presumption, show forwardness, show audacity, be unrestrained; take advantage of, exploit. ANTONYMS be polite; show consideration
- CHOOSE THE RIGHT WORD liberty, freedom, independence
All these words denote absence of constraint or coercion.
Liberty denotes the desirable state of being free, within society, from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s behaviour or political views (we believe in civil and religious liberty for everyone: ). It may also mean the power or scope to act as one pleases (individuals should enjoy the liberty to pursue their own preferences: ). To be at liberty to do something is to be allowed or entitled to do it (I’m not at liberty to say: ).
Freedom is a more general word for the absence of constraint (decentralization would give local managers more freedom: | freedom of expression: | freedom to organize their affairs: ).
Freedom can also indicate the absence of a particular evil or constraint (freedom from fear: | freedom from interference: ) or the state of being unrestricted in movement (the shorts have a side split for freedom of movement: ).
Both freedom and liberty can also mean the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved (the teenager committed fifty-six crimes before he lost his freedom: | the mayor remained at liberty pending a decision as to his place of confinement: ).
The principal meaning of independence is the absence of control of a nation or corporate body by an outside power (recognition of Azerbaijan’s independence: | the independence of the judiciary: ). When used in relation to individuals, independence may denote a freedom from commitments (could she pursue her independence if Chester needed her?: ) or the personal quality of not relying on others (parents should foster their child’s independence: ).
noun 1the prisoners made a desperate bid for freedom: liberty, liberation, release, emancipation, deliverance, delivery, discharge, non-confinement, extrication; amnesty, pardoning; historical manumission; rare disenthralment.
captivity2 a national revolution was the only path to freedom: independence, self-government, self-determination, self-legislation, self rule, home rule, sovereignty, autonomy, autarky, democracy; self-sufficiency, individualism, separation, non-alignment; emancipation, enfranchisement; historical manumission.
dependence 3 they want freedom from local political accountability: exemption, immunity, dispensation, exception, exclusion, release, relief, reprieve, absolution, exoneration; impunity; informal letting off, a let-off; rare derogation.
liability 4 the law interfered with their freedom of expression: right to, entitlement to; privilege, prerogative, due. 5 patients have more freedom to choose who treats them: scope, latitude, leeway, margin, flexibility, facility, space, breathing space, room, elbow room; licence, leave, free rein, a free hand; leisure; French carte blanche.
restriction 6 I admire her freedom of manner: naturalness, openness, lack of reserve/inhibition, casualness, informality, lack of ceremony, spontaneity, ingenuousness.7 he treats her with too much freedom: impudence; familiarity, overfamiliarity, presumption, forwardness; informal cheek.
fear of freedom
gratification is the pleasurable emotional reaction of happiness in response to a fulfillment of a desire or goal. It is also identified as a response stemming from the fulfillment of social needs such as affiliation, socializing, social approval, and mutual recognition.
Gratification, like all emotions, is a motivator of behavior and thus plays a role in the entire range of human social systems.
Immediate and delayed gratification
The term immediate gratification is often used to label the satisfactions gained by more impulsive behaviors: choosing now over tomorrow. The skill of giving preference to long-term goals over more immediate ones is known as deferred gratification or patience, and it is usually considered a virtue, producing rewards in the long term. There are sources who claim that the prefrontal cortex plays a part in the incidence of these two types of gratification, particularly in the case of delayed gratification since one of its functions involve predicting future events.
Walter Mischel developed the well-known marshmallow experiment to test gratification patterns in four-year-olds, offering one marshmallow now or two after a delay. He discovered in long-term follow-up that the ability to resist eating the marshmallow immediately was a good predictor of success in later life. However, Tyler W. Watts, Greg J. Duncan, and Haonan Quan, published Revisiting the Marshmallow Test: A Conceptual Replication Investigating Links Between Early Delay of Gratification and Later Outcomes debunking the original marshmallow experiment. Concluding that “This bivariate correlation was only half the size of those reported in the original studies and was reduced by two thirds in the presence of controls for family background, early cognitive ability, and the home environment. Most of the variation in adolescent achievement came from being able to wait at least 20 s. Associations between delay time and measures of behavioral outcomes at age 15 were much smaller and rarely statistically significant.”
While one might say that those who lack the skill to delay are immature, an excess of this skill can create problems as well; i.e. an individual becomes inflexible, or unable to take pleasure in life (anhedonia) and seize opportunities for fear of adverse consequences.
Gratification is a major issue in bipolar disorder. One sign of the onset of depression is a spreading loss of the sense of gratification in such immediate things as friendship, jokes, conversation, food and sex. Long-term gratification seems even more meaningless.
By contrast, the manic can find gratification in almost anything, even a leaf falling, or seeing their crush for example. There is also the case of the so-called manic illusion of gratification , which isanalogous to an infant’s illusion of obtaining food. Here, if the food is not given right away, he fantasizes about it and this eventually give way to stronger emotions such as anger and depression.
Acceptance – Affection – Amusement – Anger – Angst – Anguish – Annoyance – Anticipation – Anxiety – Apathy – Arousal – Awe – Boredom – Confidence – Contempt – Contentment – Courage – Curiosity – Depression – Desire – Despair – Disappointment – Disgust – Distrust – Doubt – Ecstasy – Embarrassment – Empathy – Enthusiasm – Envy – Euphoria – Faith – Fear – Frustration – Gratification Gratitude – Greed – Grief – Guilt – Happiness – Hatred – Hope – Horror – Hostility – Humiliation – Interest – Jealousy – Joy – Kindness – Loneliness – Love – Lust – Nostalgia – Outrage – Panic – Passion – Pity – Pleasure – Pride – Rage – Regret – Rejection – Remorse – Resentment – Sadness – Self-confidence – Self-pity – Shame – Shock – Shyness – Social connection – Sorrow – Suffering – Surprise – Trust – Wonder – Worry
Definition and comment on the vectoral class
“Information, like land or capital, becomes a form of property monopolised by a class of vectoralists, so named because they control the vectors along which information is abstracted, just as capitalists control the material means with which goods are produced, and pastoralists the land with which food is produced. Information circulated within working class culture as a social property belonging to all. But when information in turn becomes a form of private property, workers are dispossessed of it, and must buy their own culture back from its owners, the vectoralist class. The whole of time, time itself, becomes a commodified experience. Vectoralists try to break capital’s monopoly on the production process, and subordinate the production of goods to the circulation of information. The leading corporations divest themselves of their productive capacity, as this is no longer a source of power. Their power lies in monopolising intellectual property – patents and brands – and the means of reproducing their value – the vectors of communication. The privatisation of information becomes the dominant, rather than a subsidiary, aspect of commodified life. As private property advances from land to capital to information, property itself becomes more abstract. As capital frees land from its spatial fixity, information as property frees capital from its fixity in a particular object. … Information, once it becomes a form of property, develops beyond a mere support for capital – it becomes the basis of a form of accumulation in its own right… The vectoral class comes into its own once it is in possession of powerful technologies for vectoralising information. The vectoral class may commodify information stocks, flows, or vectors themselves. A stock of information is an archive, a body of information maintained through time that has enduring value. A flow of information is the capacity to extract information of temporary value out of events and to distribute it widely and quickly. A vector is the means of achieving either the temporal distribution of a stock, or the spatial distribution of a flow of information. Vectoral power is generally sought through the ownership of all three aspects.” (http://subsol.c3.hu/subsol_2/contributors0/warktext.html)
Definition and comment on the vector
“In epidemiology, a vector is the particular means by which a given pathogen travels from one population to another. Water is a vector for cholera, bodily fluids for HIV. By extension, a vector may be any means by which information moves. Telegraph, telephone, television, telecommunications: these terms name not just particular vectors, but a general abstract capacity that they bring into the world and expand. All are forms of telesthesia, or perception at a distance. A given media vector has certain fixed properties of speed, bandwidth, scope and scale, but may be deployed anywhere, at least in principle. The uneven development of the vector is political and economic, not technical… With the commodification of information comes its vectoralisation. Extracting a surplus from information requires technologies capable of transporting information through space, but also through time. The archive is a vector through time just as communication is a vector that crosses space… The vectoral class may commodify information stocks, flows, or vectors themselves. A stock of information is an archive, a body of information maintained through time that has enduring value. A flow of information is the capacity to extract information of temporary value out of events and to distribute it widely and quickly. A vector is the means of achieving either the temporal distribution of a stock, or the spatial distribution of a flow of information. ” (http://subsol.c3.hu/subsol_2/contributors0/warktext.html)
Definition and comment on the hacker class
“The hacker class, producer of new abstractions, becomes more important to each successive ruling class, as each depends more and more on information as a resource. The hacker class arises out of the transformation of information into property, in the form of intellectual property, including patents, trademarks, copyright and the moral right of authors. The hacker class is the class with the capacity to create not only new kinds of object and subject in the world, not only new kinds of property form in which they may be represented, but new kinds of relation beyond the property form. The formation of the hacker class as a class comes at just this moment when freedom from necessity and from class domination appears on the horizon as a possibility…. Hackers must calculate their interests not as owners, but as producers, for this is what distinguishes them from the vectoralist class. Hackers do not merely own, and profit by owning information. They produce new information, and as producers need access to it free from the absolute domination of the commodity form. Hacking as a pure, free experimental activity must be free from any constraint that is not self imposed. Only out of its liberty will it produce the means of producing a surplus of liberty and liberty as a surplus. ” (http://subsol.c3.hu/subsol_2/contributors0/warktext.html)
Utilitarianism is a family of consequentialist ethical theories that promotes actions that maximize happiness and well-being for the affected individuals. Although different varieties of utilitarianism admit different characterizations, the basic idea behind all of them is to in some sense maximize utility, which is often defined in terms of well-being or related concepts. For instance, Jeremy Bentham, the founder of utilitarianism, described utility as “that property in any object, whereby it tends to produce benefit, advantage, pleasure, good, or happiness…[or] to prevent the happening of mischief, pain, evil, or unhappiness to the party whose interest is considered.” Utilitarianism is a version of consequentialism, which states that the consequences of any action are the only standard of right and wrong. Unlike other forms of consequentialism, such as egoism and altruism, utilitarianism considers the interests of all humans equally.
Proponents of utilitarianism have disagreed on a number of points, such as whether actions should be chosen based on their likely results (act utilitarianism) or whether agentsshould conform to rules that maximize utility (rule utilitarianism). There is also disagreement as to whether total (total utilitarianism), average (average utilitarianism) or minimum utility should be maximized.
Though the seeds of the theory can be found in the hedonists Aristippus and Epicurus, who viewed happiness as the only good, the tradition of utilitarianism properly began with Bentham, and has included John Stuart Mill, Henry Sidgwick, R. M. Hare, David Braybrooke and Peter Singer. It has been applied to social welfare economics, the crisis of global poverty, the ethics of raising animals for food and the importance of avoiding existential risks to humanity.
Status quo or Statu quo is a Latin phrase meaning the existing state of affairs, particularly with regard to social or political issues. In the sociological sense, it generally applies to maintaining or changing existing social structure and/or values. With regard to policy debate, the status quo refers to how conditions are at the time and how the affirmative teamcan solve these conditions for example “The countries are now trying to maintain a status quo with regards to their nuclear arsenal which will help them if the situation gets any worse.”
Status quo is the nominative form of the ablative in the prepositional Latin phrase “in statu quo” – literally “in the state in which”, which itself is a shortening of the original phrase in statu quo res erant ante bellum, meaning “in the state in which things were before the war”. To maintain the status quo is to keep things the way they presently are. The related phrase status quo ante, literally “the state in which before”, means “the state of affairs that existed previously”.
Social movements are an example of times when the status quo might be challenged. In these instances, status quo refers to the current state of affairs around a particular issue, or perhaps the current culture or social climate of an entire society or nation. The status quo is generally perceived negatively by supporters of the social movement, and people who want to maintain the status quo can be seen as being resistant to progress.
Politicians sometimes refer to a status quo, though such usage is sometimes accused of being a policy of deliberate ambiguity, namely, referring to the “status quo” rather than formalizing or defining the said status. Clark Kerr is reported to have said: “The status quo is the only solution that cannot be vetoed“.
conscious | ˈkɒnʃəs |
1 aware of and responding to one’s surroundings: although I was in pain, I was conscious.
2 having knowledge of something: we are conscious of the extent of the problem. • [in combination] concerned with or worried about a particular matter: they were growing increasingly security-conscious.
3 (of an action or feeling) deliberate and intentional: a conscious effort to walk properly. • (of the mind or a thought) directly perceptible to and under the control of the person concerned: when you go to sleep it is only the conscious mind which shuts down. ORIGIN late 16th century (in the sense ‘being aware of wrongdoing’): from Latin conscius ‘knowing with others or in oneself’ (from conscire ‘be privy to’) + -ous.
1 the patient was barely conscious: aware, awake, wide awake, compos mentis, alert, responsive, reactive, feeling, sentient. ANTONYMS unconscious
2 he became conscious of people talking in the hall: aware of, alive to, awake to, alert to, sensitive to, cognizant of, mindful of, sensible of; informal wise to, in the know about, hip to; archaic ware of; rare seized of, recognizant of, regardful of. ANTONYMS unaware
3 he made a conscious effort to stop staring: deliberate, intentional, intended, done on purpose, purposeful, purposive, willed, knowing, considered, studied, strategic; calculated, wilful, premeditated, planned, pre-planned, preconceived, volitional; aforethought; Law, dated prepense.
adjective |civilization noun 1 a higher stage of civilization: human development, advancement, progress, enlightenment, culture, refinement, sophistication. 2 ancient civilizations: culture, society, nation, people.
Civilisational or Societal collapse is the fall of a complex human society. Such a disintegration may be relatively abrupt, as in the case of Maya civilization, or gradual, as in the case of the fall of the Western Roman Empire.
Causes of collapse
Common factors that may contribute to societal collapse are economical, environmental, social and cultural, and disruptions in one domain sometimes cascade into others. In somecases a natural disaster (e.g. tsunami, earthquake, massive fire or climate change) may precipitate a collapse. Other factors such as a Malthusian catastrophe, overpopulation or resource depletion might be the proximate cause of collapse. Significant inequity and exposed corruption may combine with lack of loyalty to established political institutions and result in an oppressed lower class rising up and seizing power from a smaller wealthy elite in a revolution. The diversity of forms that societies evolve corresponds to diversity in their failures. Jared Diamond suggests that societies have also collapsed through deforestation, loss of soilfertility, restrictions of trade and/or rising endemic violence.
adjective |(stress on the first syllable) |1 abstract concepts such as love and beauty: theoretical, conceptual, notional, intellectual, metaphysical, philosophical, academic; hypothetical, speculative, conjectural, conjectured, suppositional, putative; rare suppositious, suppositive, ideational.
ANTONYMS actual, concrete.
adjective | ˈabstrakt | 1 existing in thought or as an idea but not having a physical or concrete existence: abstract concepts such as love or beauty. • dealing with ideas rather than events: the novel was too abstract and esoteric to sustain much attention. • not based on a particular instance; theoretical: we have been discussing the problem in a very abstract manner. • (of a noun) denoting an idea, quality, or state rather than a concrete object.
2 relating to or denoting art that does not attempt to represent external reality, but rather seeks to achieve its effect using shapes, colours, and textures: abstract pictures.
verb | əbˈstrakt | [with object] (abstract something from) consider something theoretically or separately from(something else): to abstract science and religion from their historical context can lead to anachronism.
2 (usually abstract something from) extract or remove (something): applications to abstract more water from streams. • used euphemistically to indicate that someone has stolen something: his pockets contained all he had been able to abstract from the flat. • (abstract oneself) withdraw: as our relationship deepened you seemed to abstract yourself. 3 make a written summary of (an article or book): staff who abstract material for an online database.
noun | ˈabstrakt | 1 a summary of the contents of a book, article, or speech: an abstract of her speech. 2 an abstract work of art: a big unframed abstract. PHRASES in the abstract in a general way; without reference to specific instances: there’s a fine line between promoting US business interests in the abstract and promoting specific companies. DERIVATIVES abstractly | ˈabstraktli | adverb abstractor | abˈstraktə | noun ORIGIN Middle English: from Latin abstractus, literally ‘drawn away’, past participle of abstrahere, from ab- ‘from’ + trahere ‘draw off’.
2 abstract art: non-representational, non-realistic, non-pictorial, symbolic, impressionistic.
ANTONYMS representational.verb |(stress on the second syllable)
1 staff who index and abstract material for an online database: summarize, write a summary of, precis, abridge, condense, compress, shorten, cut down, abbreviate, synopsize; rare epitomize.
2 they want to abstract water from the river: extract, pump, draw (off), tap, suck, withdraw, remove, take out/away; separate, detach, isolate, dissociate.
noun |(stress on the first syllable) |an abstract of her speech: summary, synopsis, precis, résumé, outline, recapitulation, abridgement, condensation, digest, summation; French aperçu; North American wrap-up; archaic argument; rare epitome, conspectus. ANTONYMS complete version, full text.
An anachronism (from the Greekἀνά ana, “against” and χρόνοςkhronos, “time”) is a chronologicalinconsistency in some arrangement, especially a juxtaposition of persons, events, objects, or customs from different periods. The most common type of anachronism is an object misplaced in time, but it may be a verbal expression, a technology, a philosophical idea, a musical style, a material, a plant or animal, a custom, or anything else associated with a particular period that is placed outside its proper temporal domain.
An anachronism may be either intentional or unintentional. Intentional anachronisms may be introduced into a literary or artistic work to help a contemporary audience engage more readily with a historical period. Anachronism can also be used for purposes of rhetoric, comedy, or shock. Unintentional anachronisms may occur when a writer, artist, or performer is unaware of differences in technology, language, customs, attitudes, or fashions between different historical eras.
capitalism is an economic system based on the private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit. Characteristics central to capitalism include private property, capital accumulation, wage labor, voluntary exchange, a price system and competitive markets. In a capitalist market economy, decision-making and investments are determined by every owner of wealth, property or production ability in financial and capital markets, whereas prices and the distribution of goods and services are mainly determined by competition in goods and services markets.
Economists, political economists, sociologists and historians have adopted different perspectives in their analyses of capitalism and have recognized various forms of it in practice. These include laissez-faire or free-market capitalism, welfare capitalism and state capitalism. Different forms of capitalism feature varying degrees of free markets, public ownership, obstacles to free competition and state-sanctioned social policies. The degree of competition in markets, the role of interventionand regulation, and the scope of state ownershipvary across different models of capitalism.The extent to which different markets are free as well as the rules defining private property are matters of politics and policy. Most existingcapitalist economies are mixed economies whichcombine elements of free markets with state intervention and in some cases economic planning.
Market economies have existed under many forms of government and in many different times, places and cultures. Modern capitalist societies—marked by a universalization of money-based social relations, a consistently large and system-wide class of workers who must work for wages, and a capitalist class which owns the means of production—developed in Western Europe in a process that led to the Industrial Revolution. Capitalist systems with varying degrees of direct government intervention have since become dominant in the Western world and continue to spread. Over time, capitalist countries have experienced consistent economic growth and an increase in the standard of living.
Critics of capitalism argue that it establishes power in the hands of a minority capitalist class that exists through the exploitation of the majority working class and their labor; prioritizes profit over social good, natural resources and the environment; and is an engine of inequality, corruption and economic instabilities. Supporters argue that it provides better products and innovation through competition, disperses wealth to all productive people, promotes pluralism and decentralization of power, creates strong economic growth and yields productivity andprosperity that greatly benefit society.
Economic systems link
empathy | ˈɛmpəθi | noun [mass noun] the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. DERIVATIVESempathist noun ORIGINearly 20th century: from Greek empatheia (from em- ‘in’ + pathos ‘feeling’) translating German Einfühlung.USAGE People often confuse the words empathy and sympathy. Empathymeans ‘the ability to understand and share the feelings of another’ (as in both authors have the skill to make you feel empathy with their heroines), whereas sympathy means ‘feelings of pity and sorrow for someone else’s misfortune’ (as in they had great sympathy for the floodvictims).
What is really important about learning a language is learning empathy for another culture: affinity with, rapport with, sympathy with, understanding of, sensitivity towards, sensibility to, identification with, awareness of, fellowship with, fellow feeling for, like-mindedness, togetherness, closeness to; informal chemistry. ANTONYMS distance
Empathy is the capacity to understand or feel what another person is experiencing from within their frame of reference, that is, the capacity to place oneself in another’s position.Definitions of empathy encompass a broad range ofemotional states. Types of empathy include cognitive empathy, emotional (or affective) empathy, and somaticempathy.
truth is most often used to mean being in accord with fact or reality, or fidelity to an original or standard. Truth is also sometimes defined in moderncontexts as an idea of “truth to self”, or authenticity.
Truth is usually held to be opposite to falsehood, which, correspondingly, can also suggest a logical, factual, or ethical meaning. The concept of truth is discussed and debated in several contexts, including philosophy, art, theology, and science. Most human activities depend upon the concept, where its nature as a concept is assumed rather than being a subject of discussion; these include most of the sciences, law, journalism, and everyday life. Some philosophers view the concept of truth as basic, and unable to be explained in any terms that are more easily understood than the concept of truth itself. To some, truth is viewed as the correspondence of language or thought to an independent reality, in what is sometimes called the correspondence theory of truth.
Various theories and views of truth continue to be debated among scholars, philosophers, and theologians. Language is a means by which humans convey information to one another. The method used to determine whether something is a truth is termed a criterion of truth. There are varying stances on such questions as what constitutes truth: what things are truthbearerscapable of being true or false; how to define, identify, and distinguish truth; what roles do faith and empirical knowledge play; and whether truth can be subjective or is objective: relative truth versus absolute truth.
Schadenfreude (/ˈʃɑːdənfrɔɪdə/; German: [ˈʃaːdn̩ˌfʁɔʏ̯də] (listen); lit. ‘harm-joy’) is the experience of pleasure, joy, or self-satisfaction that comes from learning of or witnessing the troubles, failures, or humiliation of another.
Schadenfreude is a complex emotion, where rather than feeling sympathy toward someone’s misfortune, schadenfreude evokes joyful feelings that take pleasure from watching someone fail. This emotion is displayed more in children than adults. However, adults also experience schadenfreude, although generally, they conceal it.
Schadenfreude is borrowed from German. It is a compound of Schaden, “damage, harm”, and Freude, “joy”. The German word was first mentioned in English texts in 1852 and 1867, and first used in English running text in 1895. In German, it was first attested in the 1740s.
Psychological causes of schadenfreude
Researchers have found that there are three driving forces behind schadenfreude: aggression, rivalry, and justice. Several studies have produced evidence that self-esteem has a negative relationship with the frequency and intensity of schadenfreude experienced by an individual. This means that the less self-esteem an individual has, the more frequently or more intensely they will experience schadenfreude.
The reverse also holds true – those with higher self-esteem experience schadenfreude less frequently or with less emotional intensity.
It is hypothesized that this inverse relationship is mediated through the human psychological inclination to define and protect their self- and in-group- identity or self-conception. Specifically, for someone with high self-esteem, seeing another person fail may still bring them a small (but effectively negligible) surge of confidence because the observer’s high self-esteem significantly lowers the threat they believe the visibly-failing human poses to their status or identity. Since this confident individual perceives that, regardless of circumstances, the successes and failures of the other person will have little impact on their own status or well-being, they have very little emotional investment in how the other person fares, be it positive or negative.
Conversely, for someone with low self-esteem, someone who is more successful poses a threat to their sense of self, and seeing this ‘mighty’ person fall can be a source of comfort because they perceive a relative improvement in their internal or in-group standing.
- Aggression-based schadenfreude primarily involves group identity. The joy of observing the suffering of others comes from the observer’s feeling that the other’s failure represents an improvement or validation of their own group’s (in-group) status in relation to external (out-groups) groups. This is, essentially, schadenfreude based on group versus group status.
- Rivalry-based schadenfreude is individualistic and related to interpersonal competition. It arises from a desire to stand out from and out-perform one’s peers. This is schadenfreude based on another person’s misfortune eliciting pleasure because the observer now feels better about their personal identity and self-worth, instead of their group identity.
- Justice-based schadenfreude comes from seeing that behavior seen as immoral or “bad” is punished. It is the pleasure associated with seeing a “bad” person being harmed or receiving retribution. Schadenfreude is experienced here because it makes people feel that fairness has been restored for a previously un-punished wrong.
a study that looks at the utility of using sled dogs rather than snowmobiles: usefulness, use, advantage, benefit, value, help, helpfulness, profitability, convenience, practicality, effectiveness, efficacy, avail, service, serviceableness, advantageousness; feasibility, viability, workability, practicability, possibility; informal mileage.
1 – giving birth to children and nurturing them into adulthood: bring up, care for, provide for, take care of, attend to, look after, rear, support, raise, foster, parent, mother, tend; feed, nourish; rare provender. ANTONYMS neglect.
2 – we’ve nurtured different varieties of plant: cultivate, grow, keep, tend.
3 – my father nurtured my love of art: encourage, promote, stimulate, develop, foster, cultivate, further, advance, boost, forward, contribute to, be conducive to, assist, help, aid, abet, strengthen, advantage, fuel. ANTONYMS hinder.
1 – we are all what nature and nurture have made us: upbringing, bringing up, care, fostering, tending, rearing, raising, training, education. ANTONYMS nature, innate disposition, inherited characteristics.
2 – the nurture of ideas: encouragement, promotion, fostering, development, cultivation, boosting, furtherance, advancement.3 a good base camp where one may receive nurture and rest: food, nourishment, nutrition, nutriment, diet, sustenance, feeding, subsistence; rare alimentation.
nature versus nurture
The nature versus nurture debate involves whether human behavior is determined by the environment, either prenatal or during a person’s life, or by a person’s genes. The alliterative expression “nature and nurture” in English has been in use since at least the Elizabethan period and goes back to medieval French.
The combination of the two concepts as complementary is ancient (Greek: ἁπό φύσεως καὶ εὐτροφίας). Nature is what we think of as pre-wiring and is influenced by genetic inheritance and other biological factors. Nurture is generally taken as the influence of external factors after conception e.g. the product of exposure, experience and learning on an individual.
The phrase in its modern sense was popularized by the English Victorian polymath Francis Galton, the modern founder of eugenics and behavioral genetics, discussing the influence of heredity and environment on social advancement. Galton was influenced by the book On the Origin of Species written by his half-cousin, Charles Darwin.
The view that humans acquire all or almost all their behavioral traits from “nurture” was termed tabula rasa (“blank slate”) by John Locke in 1690. A “blank slate view” in human developmental psychology assuming that human behavioral traits develop almost exclusively from environmental influences, was widely held during much of the 20th century (sometimes termed “blank-slatism”). The debate between “blank-slate” denial of the influence of heritability, and the view admitting both environmental and heritable traits, has often been cast in terms of nature versus nurture. These two conflicting approaches to human development were at the core of an ideological dispute over research agendas throughout the second half of the 20th century. As both “nature” and “nurture” factors were found to contribute substantially, often in an inextricable manner, such views were seen as naive or outdated by most scholars of human development by the 2000s.
The strong dichotomy of nature versus nurture has thus been claimed to have limited relevance in some fields of research. Close feedback loops have been found in which “nature” and “nurture” influence one another constantly, as seen in self-domestication. In ecology and behavioral genetics, researchers think nurture has an essential influence on nature. Similarly in other fields, the dividing line between an inherited and an acquired trait becomes unclear, as in epigenetics or fetal development.
1 the god appeared in the guise of a swan: likeness, external appearance, appearance, semblance, form, outward form, shape, image, aspect; disguise, false colours; costume, clothes, outfit, dress.
2 the king sent forces into Flanders under the guise of a crusade: pretence, false show, false front, false display, show, front, facade, illusion, cover, blind, screen, smokescreen, masquerade, posture, pose, act, charade; informal put-on, put-up job.
guise | ɡʌɪz |
an external form, appearance, or manner of presentation, typically concealing the true nature of something: he visited in the guise of an inspector | sums paid under the guise of consultancy fees.
ORIGIN Middle English: from Old French, of Germanic origin; related to wise2.
1 Conservative partisans claimed that television news was biased against their party: supporter, follower, adherent, devotee, champion, backer, upholder, promoter, fanatic, fan, enthusiast, stalwart, zealot, disciple, votary; North American booster, cohort; North American informal rooter; rare janissary, sectary.
2 the partisans opened fire from the woods: guerrilla, freedom fighter, resistance fighter, member of the resistance, underground fighter, irregular soldier, irregular; terrorist.adjective the government had adopted a blatantly partisan attitude: biased, prejudiced, one-sided, coloured, discriminatory, preferential, partial, interested, parti pris, bigoted, sectarian, factional, unjust, unfair, inequitable, unbalanced. ANTONYMS impartial, unbiased.
avoidant | əˈvoɪdənt | adjective Psychology relating to or denoting a type of personality or behaviour characterized by the avoidance of intimacy or social interaction: he was also anxious, avoidant, and unable to manage conflict.
Avoidant personality disorder (AvPD) is a Cluster C personality disorder. Those affected display a pattern of severe social anxiety, social inhibition, feelings of inadequacy and inferiority, extreme sensitivity to negative evaluation and rejection, and avoidance of social interaction despite a strong desire for intimacy. The behavior is usually noticed by early adulthood and occurs in most situations.
People with AvPD often consider themselves to be socially inept or personally unappealing and avoid social interaction for fear of being ridiculed, humiliated, rejected, or disliked. They generally avoid becoming involved with others unless they are certain they will be liked. As the name suggests, the main coping mechanism of those with AvPD is avoidance of feared stimuli.Childhood emotional neglect (in particular, the rejection of a child by one or both parents) and peer group rejection are associated with an increased risk for its development; however, it is possible for AvPD to occur without any notable history of abuse or neglect.
Some researchers have theorized certain cases of AvPD may occur when individuals with innately high sensory processing sensitivity (characterized by deeper processing of physical and emotional stimuli, alongside high levels of empathy) are raised in abusive, negligent or otherwise dysfunctional environments, which inhibits their ability to form secure bonds with others.
karma (/ˈkɑːrmə/; Sanskrit: कर्म, romanized: karma, IPA: [ˈkɐɽmɐ] (listen); Pali: kamma) means action, work or deed; it also refers to the spiritual principle of cause and effect where intent and actions of an individual (cause) influence the future of that individual (effect). Good intent and good deeds contribute to good karma and happier rebirths, while bad intent and bad deeds contribute to bad karma and bad rebirths.
The philosophy of karma is closely associated with the idea of rebirth in many schools of Indian religions (particularly Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism) as well as Taoism. In these schools, karma in the present affects one’s future in the current life, as well as the nature and quality of future lives – one’s saṃsāra.
populism | ˈpɒpjʊlɪz(ə)m | noun [mass noun] support for the concerns of ordinary people: it is clear that your populism identifies with the folks on the bottom of the ladder | the Finance Minister performed a commendable balancing act, combining populism with prudence. • the quality of appealing to or being aimed at ordinary people: art museums did not gain bigger audiences through a new populism.
populist | ˈpɒpjʊlɪst | noun a member or adherent of a political party seeking to represent the interests of ordinary people. • a person who supports or seeks to appeal to the concerns of ordinary people: she is something of a populist—her views on immigration resemble those of the right-wing tabloid press. adjective relating to or characteristic of a populist or populists: populist tabloid newspapers. DERIVATIVES populistic | pɒpjʊˈlɪstɪk | adjective ORIGIN late 19th century (originally referring to a US political party): from Latin populus ‘people’ + -ist.
Common knowledge is knowledge that is known by everyone or nearly everyone, usually with reference to the community in which the term is used. Common knowledge need not concern one specific subject, e.g., science or history. Rather, common knowledge can be about a broad range of subjects, such as science, literature, history, and entertainment. Often, common knowledge does not need to be cited. Common knowledge is distinct from general knowledge. The latter has been defined by differential psychologists as referring to “culturally valued knowledge communicated by a range of non-specialist media”, and is considered an aspect of ability related to intelligence.Therefore, there are substantial individual differences in general knowledge as opposed to common knowledge.
In broader terms, common knowledge is used to refer to information that a reader would accept as valid, such as information that many users may know. As an example, this type of information may include the temperature in which water freezes or boils. To determine if information should be considered common knowledge, you can ask yourself who your audience is, are you able to assume they already have some familiarity with the topic, or will the information’s credibility come into question.
Many techniques have been developed in response to the question of distinguishing truth from fact in matters that have become “common knowledge”. The scientific method is usually applied in cases involving phenomena associated with astronomy, mathematics, physics, and the general laws of nature. In legal settings, rules of evidence generally exclude hearsay (which may draw on “facts” someone believes to be “common knowledge”).
“Conventional wisdom” is a similar term also referring to ostensibly pervasive knowledge or analysis.
entropy (arrow of time)
entropy is the only quantity in the physical sciences (apart from certain rare interactions in particle physics; see below) that requires a particular direction for time, sometimes called an arrow of time. As one goes “forward” in time, the second law of thermodynamics says, the entropy of an isolated system can increase, but not decrease. Hence, from one perspective, entropy measurement is a way of distinguishing the past from the future. However, in thermodynamic systems that are not closed, entropy can decrease with time: many systems, including living systems, reduce local entropy at the expense of an environmental increase, resulting in a net increase in entropy. Examples of such systems and phenomena include the formation of typical crystals, the workings of a refrigerator and living organisms, used in thermodynamics.
Much like temperature, despite being an abstract concept, everyone has an intuitive sense of the effects of entropy. For example, it is often very easy to tell the difference between a video being played forwards or backwards. A video may depict a wood fire that melts a nearby ice block, played in reverse it would show that a puddle of water turned a cloud of smoke into unburnt wood and froze itself in the process. Surprisingly, in either case the vast majority of the laws of physics are not broken by these processes, a notable exception being the second law of thermodynamics. When a law of physics applies equally when time is reversed it is said to show T-symmetry, in this case entropy is what allows one to decide if the video described above is playing forwards or in reverse as intuitively we identify that only when played forwards the entropy of the scene is increasing. Because of the second law of thermodynamics entropy prevents macroscopic processes showing T-symmetry.
When studying at a microscopic scale the above judgements can not be made. Watching a single smoke particle buffeted by air it would not be clear if a video was playing forwards or in reverse and in fact it would not be possible as the laws which apply show T-symmetry, as it drifts left or right qualitatively it looks no different. It is only when you study that gas at a macroscopic scale that the effects of entropy become noticeable. On average you would expect the smoke particles around a struck match to drift away from each other, diffusing throughout the available space. It would be an astronomically improbable event for all the particles to cluster together, yet you can not comment on the movement of any one smoke particle.
By contrast, certain subatomic interactions involving the weak nuclear force violate the conservation of parity, but only very rarely. According to the CPT theorem, this means they should also be time irreversible, and so establish an arrow of time. This, however, is neither linked to the thermodynamic arrow of time, nor has anything to do with our daily experience of time irreversibility.
A ‘disruptive’ innovator
An innovation that does not significantly affect existing markets. It may be either:
Revolutionary (discontinuous, radical)
- An innovation that is unexpected, but nevertheless does not affect existing markets (e.g., the first automobiles in the late 19th century, which were expensive luxury items, and as such very few were sold)
- An innovation that creates a newmarket by providing a different set of values, which ultimately (and unexpectedly) overtakes an existing market (e.g., the lower-priced, affordable Ford Model T, which displaced horse-drawn carriages)
Not all innovations are disruptive, even if they are revolutionary. For example, the first automobiles in the late 19th century were not a disruptive innovation, because early automobiles were expensive luxury items that did not disrupt the market for horse-drawn vehicles. The market for transportation essentially remained intact until the debut of the lower-priced Ford Model T in 1908.The mass-produced automobile was a disruptive innovation, because it changed the transportation market, whereas the first thirty years of automobiles did not.
Disruptive innovations tend to be produced by outsiders and entrepreneurs in startups, rather than existing market-leading companies. The businessenvironment of market leaders does not allow them to pursue disruptive innovations when they first arise, because they are not profitable enough at first and because their development can take scarce resources away from sustaining innovations (which are needed to compete against current competition). A disruptive process can take longer to develop than by the conventional approach and the risk associated to it is higher than the other more incremental or evolutionary forms of innovations, but once it is deployed in the market, it achieves a much faster penetration and higher degree of impact on the established markets.
Personality disorders (PD) are a class of mental ddisorders characterized by enduring maladaptive patterns of behavior, cognition, and inner experience, exhibited across many contexts and deviating from those accepted by the individual’s culture. These patterns develop early, are inflexible, and are associated with significant distress or disability. The definitions may vary somewhat, according to source. Official criteria for diagnosing personality disorders are listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and the fifth chapter of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD).
Personality, defined psychologically, is the set of enduring behavioral and mental traits that distinguish individual humans. Hence, personality disorders are defined by experiences and behaviors that differ from social norms and expectations. Those diagnosed with a personality disorder may experience difficulties in cognition, emotiveness, interpersonal functioning, or impulse control. In general, personality disorders are diagnosed in 40–60% of psychiatric patients, making them the most frequent of psychiatric diagnoses.
Personality disorders are characterized by an enduring collection of behavioral patterns often associated with considerable personal, social, and occupational disruption. Personality disorders are also inflexible and pervasive across many situations, largely due to the fact that such behavior may be ego-syntonic (i.e. the patterns are consistent with the ego integrity of the individual) and are therefore perceived to be appropriate by that individual. This behavior can result in maladaptive coping skills and may lead to personal problems that induce extreme anxiety, distress, or depression. These behaviour patterns are typically recognized in adolescence, the beginning of adulthood or sometimes even childhood and often have a pervasive negative impact on the quality of life.
Many issues occur with classifying a personality disorder. Because the theory and diagnosis of personality disorders occur within prevailing cultural expectations, their validity is contested by some experts on the basis of inevitable subjectivity. They argue that the theory and diagnosis of personality disorders are based strictly on social, or even sociopolitical and economic considerations.
Awareness is the ability to directly know and perceive, to feel, or to be cognizant of events. More broadly, it is the state of being conscious of something. Another definition describes it as a state wherein a subject is aware of some information when that information is directly available to bring to bear in the direction of a wide range of behavioral processes. The concept is often synonymous to consciousness and is also understood as being consciousness itself.
States of awareness are also associated with the states of experience so that the structure represented in awareness is mirrored in the structure of experience.
Social status is the relative level of respect, honor, assumed competence, and deference accorded to people, groups, and organizations in a society. Some writers have also referred to a socially valued role or category a person occupies as a “status” (e.g., gender, race, having a criminal conviction, etc.). Status is based in beliefs about who members of a society believe holds comparatively more or less social value.By definition, these beliefs are broadly shared among members of a society. As such, people use status hierarchies to allocate resources, leadership positions, and other forms of power. In so doing, these shared cultural beliefs make unequal distributions of resources and powerappear natural and fair, supporting systems of social stratification. Status hierarchies appear to be universal across human societies, affording valued benefits to those who occupy the higher rungs, such as better health, social approval, resources, influence, and freedom.
Status hierarchies depend primarily on the possession and use of status symbols. These are cues people use to determine how much status a person holds and how they should be treated. Such symbols can include the possession of socially valuable attributes, like being conventionally beautiful or having a prestigious degree. Other status symbols include wealth and its display through conspicuous consumption. Status in face-to-face interaction can also be conveyed through certain controllable behaviors, such as assertive speech, posture, and emotional displays.
Narcissism is the pursuit of gratification from vanity or egotistic admiration of one’s idealised self image and attributes. The term originated from Greek mythology, where the young Narcissus fell in love with his own image reflected in a pool of water. Narcissism is a concept in psychoanalytic theory, which was popularly introduced in Sigmund Freud‘s essay On Narcissism (1914). The American Psychiatric Association has listed the classification narcissistic personality disorder in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders(DSM) since 1968, drawing on the historical concept of megalomania.
Narcissism is also considered a social or cultural problem. It is a factor in trait theory used in various self-report inventories of personality such as the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory. It is one of the three dark triadic personality traits (the others being psychopathy and Machiavellianism). Except in the sense of primary narcissism or healthy self-love, narcissism is usually considered a problem in a person’s or group’s relationships with self and others. Narcissism is not the same as egocentrism.
imagery, in a literary text, is an author’s use of vivid and descriptive language to add depth to their work. It appeals to human senses to deepen the reader’s understanding of the work. Powerful forms of imagery engage all of the senses.
There are seven major types of imagery, each corresponding to a sense, feeling, action, or reaction:
- Visual imagery pertains to graphics, visual scenes, pictures, or the sense of sight.
- Auditory imagery pertains to sounds, noises, music, or the sense of hearing. (This kind of imagery may come in the form of onomatopoeia).
- Olfactory imagery pertains to odors, scents, or the sense of smell.
- Gustatory imagery pertains to flavors or the sense of taste.
- Tactile imagery pertains to physical textures or the sense of touch.
- Kinesthetic imagery pertains to movements.
- Organic imagery / subjective imagery, pertains to personal experiences of a character’s body, including emotion and the senses of hunger, thirst, fatigue, and pain.
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mislead | mɪsˈliːd | verb (past and past participle misled | mɪsˈlɛd | ) [with object] cause (someone) to have a wrong idea or impression: the government misled the public about the road’s environmental impact.
deceit | dɪˈsiːt | noun [mass noun] the action or practice of deceiving someone by concealing or misrepresenting the truth: a web of deceit | hypocrisy and deceit were anathema to her | [count noun] : a series of lies and deceits.
Deception is an act or statement which misleads, hides the truth, or promotes a belief, concept, or idea that is nottrue. It is often done for personal gain or advantage. Deception can involve dissimulation, propaganda, and sleight of hand, as well as distraction, camouflage, or concealment. There is also self-deception, as in bad faith. It can also be called, with varying subjective implications, beguilement, deceit, bluff, mystification, ruse, or subterfuge.
Deception is a major relational transgression that often leads to feelings of betrayal and distrust between relational partners. Deception violates relational rules and is considered to be a negative violation of expectations. Most people expect friends, relational partners, and even strangers to be truthful most of the time. If people expected most conversations to be untruthful, talking and communicating with others would require distraction and misdirection to acquire reliable information. A significant amount of deception occurs between some romantic and relational partners.
Deceit and dishonesty can also form grounds for civil litigation in tort, or contract law (where it is known as misrepresentation or fraudulent misrepresentation if deliberate), or give rise to criminal prosecution for fraud. It also forms a vital part of psychological warfare in denial and deception.
Deception detection between relational partners is extremely difficult, unless a partner tells a blatant or obvious lie or contradicts something the other partner knows to be true. While it is difficult to deceive a partner over a long period oftime, deception often occurs in day-to-day conversations between relationalpartners. Detecting deception is difficult because there are no known completely reliable indicators of deception and because people often reply on a truth-default state. Deception, however, places a significant cognitive load on the deceiver. He or she must recall previous statements so that his or her story remains consistent and believable. As a result, deceivers often leak important information both verbally and nonverbally.
Deception and its detection is a complex, fluid, and cognitive process that is based on the context of the message exchange. The interpersonal deception theory posits that interpersonal deception is a dynamic, iterative process of mutual influence between a sender, who manipulates information to depart from the truth, and a receiver, who attempts to establish the validity of the message. A deceiver’s actions are interrelated to the message receiver’s actions. It is during this exchange that the deceiver will reveal verbal and nonverbal information about deceit. Some research has found that there are some cues that may be correlated with deceptive communication, but scholars frequently disagree about the effectiveness of many of these cues to serve as reliable indicators. Noted deception scholar Aldert Vrij even states that there is no nonverbal behavior that is uniquely associated with deception. As previously stated, a specific behavioral indicator of deception does not exist. There are, however, some nonverbal behaviors that have been found to be correlated with deception. Vrij found that examining a “cluster” of these cues was a significantly more reliable indicator of deception than examining a single cue.
Mark Frank proposes that deception is detected at the cognitive level. Lying requires deliberate conscious behavior, so listening to speech and watching body language are important factors in detecting lies. If a response to a question has a lot disturbances, less talking time, repeated words, and poor logical structure, then the person may be lying. Vocal cues such as frequency height and variation may also provide meaningful clues to deceit.
Fear specifically causes heightened arousal in liars, which manifests in more frequent blinking, pupil dilation, speech disturbances, and a higher pitched voice. The liars that experience guilt have been shown to make attempts at putting distance between themselves and the deceptive communication, producing “nonimmediacy cues” These can be verbal or physical, including speaking in more indirect ways and showing an inability to maintain eye contact with their conversation partners. Another cue for detecting deceptive speech is the tone of the speech itself. Streeter, Krauss, Geller, Olson, and Apple (1977) have assessed that fear and anger, two emotions widely associated with deception, cause greater arousal than grief or indifference, and note that the amount of stress one feels is directly related to the frequency of the voice.
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