M. E. L. Mallowan
Bio: M. E. L. Mallowan is an academic researcher. The author has contributed to research in topics: Adventure. The author has an hindex of 1, co-authored 1 publications receiving 29 citations.
TL;DR: In this paper, a comparative analysis of the Egyptian, Mesopotamian and Israelite view of life is presented, showing that the primitive Asiatic conceived of all creation in a reciprocal nexus wherein the material world was percipient as well as perceived, and Professor Wilson elaborates the same theme by saying that for the Egyptians the world was consubstantial.
Abstract: IT is a pity that Hume, who carried the Cartesian system of philosophy to its logical conclusion, lived too early to contemplate the discoveries of the past century in Egypt and Babylonia, for he would readily have understood and assimilated the ancient processes of thought which arose at the dawn of history in Western Asia--‘ And no truth appears to me more evident ’, he said, ‘ than that beasts are endowed with thought and reason as well as man ’. The arguments are developed in section XVI of ‘ The Understanding ’, where there are many delightful passages of special relevance to the ancient concepts about life. Again, he said that a bird, that ‘chooses with such care and nicety the place and materials of the nest, and sits upon her eggs for a due time, and in a suitable season, with all the precaution that a chymist is capable of in the most delicate projection, furnishes us with a lively instance of animal sagacity’. Locke, on the other hand, in his discussion of animal rationale, had refused to be drawn so far. ‘ And if Balaam’s ass had, all his life, discussed as rationally as he did once with his master, I doubt yet whether any one would have thought him worthy the name ‘man’, or allowed him to be of the same species with himself ’. Of these two statements Hume’s approximates more closely to the earliest Asiatic view of life, and it is on these lines that Messrs. Frankfort, Wilson, and Jacobsen have approached their problem, which, briefly put is-how did the early thinkers of the Near East come to say what they did about creation, the state, and man ? Professor and Mrs Frankfort define the earliest mode of thought as an ‘ I-thou ’ relation-ship, by which they mean that the primitive Asiatic conceived of all creation in a reciprocal nexus wherein the material world was percipient as well as perceived, and Professor Wilson elaborates the same theme by saying that for the Egyptians the world was consubstantial, and that their view of life might be defined as monophysite. Pro-fessor Jacobsen’s contribution illustrates to what extent the Mesopotamian view of life conformed with this outlook, for example how salt and grain were conceived of as animate beings in a close relationship with man, responsible and responsive to him. Other ideas peculiar to the Mesopotamian mind are no less clearly stressed, and herein lies the fascination of the book, that we have a comparative examination of the Egyptian, Mesopotamian and Israelite approach to life, for Hebrew theology was cast out of a similar matrix. In a concluding chapter by the Frankforts, we see the dawn of a new intellectual era. The Greek physical philosophers, regardless of the data of experience, carried the old basic concepts of the Egyptians and Mesopotamians from a concrete to an abstract frame and worked them to a reductio ad absurdurn, much as Hume did for the concepts of Cartesian philosophy. Their prescience gave birth to science. Nor should we forget that Thales of Miletus prophesied an eclipse, thereby following in the wake of the Babylonian astronomers, who had made similar observations and recorded them centuries earlier.
TL;DR: The interactions between faiths and protected areas are considered with respect to all 11 mainstream faiths and to a number of local belief systems, which offer major conservation opportunities, but also pose challenges.
Abstract: Most people follow and are influenced by some kind of spiritual faith. We examined two ways in which religious faiths can in turn influence biodiversity conservation in protected areas. First, biodiversity conservation is influenced through the direct and often effective protection afforded to wild species in sacred natural sites and in seminatural habitats around religious buildings. Sacred natural sites are almost certainly the world's oldest form of habitat protection. Although some sacred natural sites exist inside official protected areas, many thousands more form a largely unrecognized "shadow" conservation network in many countries throughout the world, which can be more stringently protected than state-run reserves. Second, faiths have a profound impact on attitudes to protection of the natural world through their philosophy, teachings, investment choices, approaches to land they control, and religious-based management systems. We considered the interactions between faiths and protected areas with respect to all 11 mainstream faiths and to a number of local belief systems. The close links between faiths and habitat protection offer major conservation opportunities, but also pose challenges. Bringing a sacred natural site into a national protected-area system can increase protection for the site, but may compromise some of its spiritual values or even its conservation values. Most protected-area managers are not trained to manage natural sites for religious purposes, but many sacred natural sites are under threat from cultural changes and habitat degradation. Decisions about whether or not to make a sacred natural site an "official" protected area therefore need to be made on a case-by-case basis. Such sites can play an important role in conservation inside and outside official protected areas. More information about the conservation value of sacred lands is needed as is more informed experience in integrating these into wider conservation strategies. In addition, many protected-area staff need training in how to manage sensitive issues relating to faiths where important faith sites occur in protected areas.
TL;DR: In this article, the authors examine the process of animal domestication and develop a cultural critique of technologies that have been fundamental to the transformation of landscapes, including concepts of "domus" and "agrios", the "bringing in" of "the wild" and associated notions of containment, fixity, settling and imp...
Abstract: Against a backdrop of growing interest in animal geographies and the genetic engineering of species, this article critically examines the process of animal domestication. To date, the social selection and breeding of animals have received little deconstructive effort from human scientists. The article begins by reviewing earlier schools of geographic thought on domestication, including the work of Carl Sauer, for whom domestication was a transhistorical process of evolution's unfolding. In working away from that perspective, I historicize animal domestication within a narrative politics of ideas about human uniqueness, savagery and civilization through which the process was conceived and conducted from at least classical times. The article thus develops a cultural critique of technologies that have been fundamental to the transformation of landscapes. Integral to the story are concepts of ‘domus’ and ‘agrios’, the ‘bringing in’ of ‘the wild’, and associated notions of containment, fixity, settling and imp...
01 Jan 2005
TL;DR: The history of myth is the history of humanity as discussed by the authors, and our stories and beliefs, our curiosity and attempts to understand the world, link us to our ancestors and each other.
Abstract: 'We are meaning-seeking creatures. Dogs, as far as we know, do not agonise about the canine condition, worry about the plight of dogs in other parts of the world, or try to see their lives from a different perspective. But human beings fall easily into despair, and from the very beginning we invented stories that enabled us to place our lives in a larger setting, that revealed an underlying pattern, and gave us a sense that, against all the depressing and chaotic evidence to the contrary, life had meaning and value.' Karen Armstrong's concise, yet compelling investigation into the history of myth takes us from the Palaeolithic period and the mythology of the hunters right up to the 'Great Western Transformation' of the last 500 years. She shows us that the history of myth is the history of humanity, and our stories and beliefs, our curiosity and attempts to understand the world, link us to our ancestors and each other. Myths help us make sense of the universe, and of ourselves. Armstrong's characteristically insightful and eloquent book serves as a brilliant and thought-provoking introduction to myth in the broadest sense - and why we dismiss it only at our peril.
01 Jan 2017
TL;DR: In this article, the authors introduce a notion of the "price of production" which is mathematically equivalent to what Marx had developed on the foundation of the labour value theory in volume III of Das Kapital (published only in 1894 by Engels) when confronting the problem of real market prices.
Abstract: claims with real quantified laws). In order to solve this problem, one has to introduce a notion of the “price of production”, for which it holds true that producers will continue to supply the market with such goods that can be produced in unlimited quantity as long as the price they anticipate exceeds their price of production. Such a notion was introduced by Alfred Marshall in 1890 in his Principles of Economics [Marshall 1949]. As it turns out, Marshall’s determination of this price is mathematically equivalent to what Marx had developed on the foundation of the labour value theory in volume III of Das Kapital (published only in 1894 by Engels) when confronting the problem of real market prices (more precisely, the equilibrium prices toward around which real prices fluctuate – Marx’s thinking was dynamic, that of Marshall static). Ideology and political whitewashing were thus no longer the only determinants of the content and results of theory. Marshall’s general aim was still to prove that the prevailing economic system was optimal. He did so by combining arguments from mathematical curves with verbal exposition (shifting to the latter when the outcome of his mathematics threatened to make conflicts with his intended conclusion too glaring. But even Marshall was not the end point of the marginalist development. In 1933, Marshall’s most brilliant student Joan Robinson showed in her Economics of Imperfect competition (second edition [J. Robinson 1969]) that his methods and arguments when taken seriously lead to a conclusion that diverges strongly from what Marshall had believed. As she shows, an economy where each sector is dominated by a small number of agents (since decades the actual situation in the capitalist economy) will 1662 In one such case, Marshall [1949: 380 n.1] claims that “abstract reasonings [...] are apt to be misleading, not only in detail, but even in their general effect [...]. Some [...] follow their mathematics boldly, but apparently without noticing that their premises lead inevitably to the conclusion that, whatever firm first gets a good start will obtain a monopoly of the whole business of its trade in its district”. What made Marshall reject this conclusion was not that it was contradicted by empirical evidence; monopolization was indeed the unmistakeable trend since decades when Marshall wrote. The problem was that this “inevitable” conclusion following from “bold” use of Marshall’s mathematics not only contradicted his ideal picture but also eliminated the basis for many of his arguments. A brief postlude 1243 never operate optimally on global terms if each agent optimizes his behaviour according to his private interests. Beyond providing monopolists with conceptual tools that allow them to determine better than by instinct alone what their private interests ask for, Joan Robinson’s theory thus showed that the “invisible hand” is less beneficial than proclaimed by Jevons and Marshall. Though no full theory of the economic crisis that had broken out, Joan Robinson provided part of the explanation. The optimistic aspect of the moral is thus that even a mediocre contribution which gains undeserved prestige may, if only further work is done seriously and critically – that is, in agreement with the general norms for decent scientific work – become fruitful in the longer run. Done seriously and critically, scientific practice may then provide both functioning technical knowledge and such insights as can serve enlightenment purposes. (The pessimistic aspect is of course that may does not entail must.) One may like or dislike the uses to which the technical knowledge is put, but we must recognize that the production of applicable knowledge has been seen since the 17th century as one of the properties that characterizes valid science. Whoever does not welcome insights that can serve enlightenment purposes does not deserve the name of an intellectual.
TL;DR: Hallowell's approach permits the building of a thrid but complementary explanation based on selection for the ability to internalize others and to attend to their representations even in the absence of their prototypes.
Abstract: A. I. Hallowell tried to turn anthropology towards a sociobiology while the former field was still strongly opposed to any consideration of the evolution of human behavior. His work is of more than historical interest, however, because he stressed the evolution of the human ability to internalize social norms and evaluate self and others in terms of them. This ability is the basis of our species's trait of cultural rather than biological adaptation to diverse ecological settings. Sociobiologists have dealt with the evolution of norm acquisition under the rubric of "altruism." Insofar as adherence to norms either directly increases the fitnes of kin (kin selection) or indirectly increases the fitness of all participants (reciprocal altruism), both Hamilton and Trivers have offered explanations for adherence to social norms. Hallowell's approach permits the building of a thrid but complementary explanation based on selection for the ability to internalize others and to attend to their representations even i...