Category: History & Culture

not art, music, performing arts or literature

Christmas 3

Still not really getting the Christmas season off to a start but we’re nearly there.

Seriously, it’s near impossible to find a decent version of Joy to the World without “celebrities” grandstanding, Mariah Carey murdering it or some other horror.

I found two reasonable versions, one by Libera, a boys’ choir:

… and one by an Eastern European girls’ choir, though methinks they’ve snuck a couple of boys in there as well:

Not a bad way to kick off the Christmas carolling season.… More here ...

More countries [quiz]

Idea, people, is to guess the countries:

1. Río de la Plata to the south, originally the Charrúa people, on a per-capita basis, it contributes more troops to United Nations peace-keeping missions than any other country, Economist “country of the year” in 2013

2. Was dominated by Bantu-speaking tribes, a Marxist–Leninist one-party state from 1970 to 1991, fourth largest oil producer in the Gulf, independence from France on 15 August 1960, in 1997 – Lissouba and Sassou started to fight for power in a civil war.

3. Name comes from an extinct tribe of Turkic origin, heavy industry, power engineering, and agriculture, saved its Jewish population from deportation to concentration camps, air pollution more severe than any other country in continent.

4. Kingdom of a Million Elephants Under the White Parasol, landlocked, occupied by French and Japanese, generates electricity from its rivers and sells power to its neighbours, accused of genocide, and violations against the Hmong ethnic minority.… More here ...

A new definition of engineering

Chuckles sends this:

Toni Airaksinen notes an interesting expansion of the Clown Quarter ethos

The leader of Purdue University’s School of Engineering Education recently declared that academic “rigour” reinforces “white male heterosexual privilege.”

“One of rigour’s purposes is, to put it bluntly, a thinly veiled assertion of white male (hetero)sexuality,” she writes, explaining that rigour “has a historical lineage of being about hardness, stiffness, and erectness; its sexual connotations — and links to masculinity in particular — are undeniable.”

“She” writes? Engineering? All right, let’s leave that to one side for now. Let’s accept that a female trailblazer can be an engineer and even become a “Doctor” somehow.

How though? Well, a clue is in this quote:

To fight [excessive masculinity], [Dr.] Riley calls for engineering programmes to “do away with” the notion of academic rigour completely, saying, “This is not about reinventing rigour for everyone, it is about doing away with the concept altogether so we can welcome other ways of knowing.

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Olde English

As with most of these, there are issues and some commenters have drawn attention to them but all the same, it’s worth a gander if you can spare the time:

More here ...

Christmas 2

The Boar’s Head Carol is ancient compared to most of the carols for Christmas. It was written in Middle English and titled, “The Bores Heed in Hande Bring I” and wasn’t considered a Christmas Carol except for the custom of eating your finest meal at Christmastime. In that way, wild boar became associated with Christmas.

Oh dear, will we ever become serious about this carolling? Maybe tomorrow evening.

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