Monday, September 30, 2019

Lombard conception of justice

Though it is very little known of the specific details of Lombard life, the Lombard legal codes have been preserved for a modern generation in a Latin document known as the Lombard Laws. The group of editors has arranged a wide collection of readings, related to the progress of Western civilization, from various historical epochs and all regions of Europe under the title Perspectives from the Past: Primary Sources in Western Civilizations. In this book in Chapter 8 called Rome’s Three Heirs: The Byzantine, Islamic, and Early Medieval Worlds we can find a reliable source of information on Lombard legislation concept. The Lombard Laws were presented in a codification of the prevailing German customs relating to family, kingship, marriage, social obligation, possessions, and resolving conflicts. These Laws were written down between the middle of the seventh and the middle of the eighth centuries under the direction of several Lombard kings. The earlier laws were issued by King Rothair in 643. The Lombard Laws partially were aimed at avoiding the blood feud or vendetta. This was a kind of traditional form of redress in society at that time. If a member of the clan was wronged, his family would often injure or kill the offending party, launching a blood feud that could last for generations. However, during the transformation to farming life and living in fixed communities, traditional methods of violence and retribution could have disturbed the population too much. Thus the Lombard Kings sought to replace violent blood feuds with a monetary penalty called composition that was paid directly to the person harmed by a crime (or their family). These penalties were expressed in solidi (a monetary unit), and they were closely related to the wergeld (personal worth) of an individual in society. Also the laws served for strict protection of the property and produce of a family. For example crime of selling another man's property without permission entailed very serious consequences for the infringer – the guilty party is required to return the stolen property eightfold, unless they can proclaim their innocence in front of witnesses. The use of witnesses testifies the increasing sophistication of the Lombard society. These laws are important from historical point of view as far as they present the description of the values and beliefs of early medieval Italians and give the picture of how a new empire is founded (that is a Germanic, illiterate culture merges with a Roman, literate one). References: Brophy, James, et al. Perspectives from the Past: Primary Sources in Western Civilizations. 2nd ed. 2 vols. W.W. Norton and Company, 2002.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Ethnic Intolerance Essay

The Yugoslavia collapse was a homemade tragedy. In sharp contrast to most of Balkan history, outside powers did not play a major role in stimulating Yugoslav division. Societies in which human development needs are threatened are ripe for conflict. In Yugoslavia ethnic groups misunderstood each others needs and desires. Political elites deliberately perpetuated and exploited conflicts between the general populace. The hypothesis of the essay is that the main propellant behind war in Yugoslavia was not ancient history and ancient hatreds but recent hatreds manipulated by elites. As it the case in all ethnic crises, it is possible to identify a wide rage of questions that have arisen during the course of Yugoslavia crises. In my opinion, there are some points of particular importance, where my paper will be based on. These are: (1) why has the ethnic hatred exploded now, after half a century of peaceful intermingling? (2) Are the roots and causes of the ethnic war ancient or recent? (3) Do politicians create nationalism, or does existing nationalism shape the political power struggle? I will handle the subject in four parts- `Socialist development and Yugoslavism`, ‘Post- Tito debate`, ‘New elites, old leaders’ policy (post-federalism)’, and ‘The slide toward disintegration’. Socialist development and Yugoslavism The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (the SFRY) was born â€Å"Phoenix-like, †¦ rising from the ashes† (Judah 2000, p. 136) of the World War II to live under the iron presidency of a Communist Josip Broz Tito (1892-1980). Whatever controversial Tito’s political reputation is, researchers acknowledged that he was the only leader whose â€Å"wartime record, †¦ undeniable charisma and †¦ ability to stand up to the Soviets in 1948 to assert Yugoslav independence allowed †¦ for several decades to maintain at least an illusion of the country’s unity† (Kozhemiakin 1998, p. 73). Williams (1998, p. 48) insisted that the head of the re-born country, Josip Tito, â€Å"deliberately aimed to create an entirely different sort of state† in 1945, and one of the most significant differences was â€Å"the equal treatment of the various groups in the population and a down-playing of the nationalities issue† (Williams 1998, p. 48). According to Judah (2000), the chronology of an ethnic question in the Yugoslavia under Tito consists of three phases: 1945-66, 1966-74, and 1974-80. During the first period, the Communist leaders were rather successful in keeping the lid on the boiling pot of nationalism. The new Yugoslav federalism was created after the USSR model with its autonomous unites within the single state framework. Under the 1946 Constitution the SFRY consisted of six republics (Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia–Hercegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia and Slovenia) and two autonomous regions (the multi-national Autonomous Province of Vojvodina and the predominantly Shipetar, or Albanian Autonomous District of Kosovo-Metohija [KOSMET] within Serbia). Conversely, the Yugoslavia national identity consisted of six ‘nations,’ or â€Å"officially recognized groups with national homes in one of the federal republics† (Hudson 2003, p. 50): Serbs, Croats, Slovenes, Montenegrins, Macedonians and Muslims (those slavs who converted to Islam under Ottoman rule); eight ‘nationalities,’ or â€Å"officially recognized groups† who â€Å"had an internationally recognized national homeland outside Yugoslavia† (Hudson 2003, p. 50): Albanians, Hungarians, Bulgarians, Czechs, Italians, Romanians, Slovaks and Turks; two ‘nationalities’ – Roma and Ruthenians – who â€Å"did not have a national homeland outside Yugoslavia† (Hudson 2003, p. 50); and others (Austrians, Greeks, Jews, Germans, Poles, Russians, Ukrainians, Vlachs, etc.). It seems that the republican and district borders were established holding ethnic, historic and economic factors in view. Tito himself underlined that the aim of republican and district borders was not †¦ drawing a boundary line between this federal unit and the other, and now you on the other side shall do as you please, and I shall do as I please on my side of the boundary. No! These boundaries, figuratively speaking, should resemble the white lines on a marble column. The boundaries of the federated units within the federal state of Yugoslavia do not denote separatism but unity. (as cited in Judah 2000, p. 140) As Judah (2000, p. 137) noted, â€Å"Bosnia was restored, with its historic 1878 frontiers, in recognition of its mixed population and to prevent it becoming the renewed object of dispute between Serbs and Croats.† The Slavs of the Macedonian region were acknowledged to be neither Serbs nor Bulgarians, but a distinctive group, therefore the Macedonian republic was created to eliminate the possible â€Å"bone of contention† (Frankel 1955, p. 416) between Serbia and Bulgaria. Montenegro acquired a republican status â€Å"in recognition of its historic status and so partly to satisfy that portion of the population which resented being relegated to the position of a far-flung province of Serbia† (Judah 2000, p. 138). The large groups of the Albanians in Kosovo and the Hungarians in Vojvodina received ‘nationalities’ status because they had homelands outside Yugoslavia. The re-born Yugoslavia has never ceased to be a shelf stuffed with ‘skeletons’ of reciprocal convictions between different ethnic populations. However, until the mid-1960s people’s minds were occupied rather with the agrarian reform, Tito’s split with Stalin, and the economic innovation of self-management. A two-chamber legislature, the Federal People’s Assembly, consisted of a directly-elected Federal Council and a Council of Nationalities, comprising delegates from the assemblies of the republics (25 representatives of each Republic, 15 of the Autonomous Province, and 10 of the Autonomous District). The Federal People’s Assembly elected the Praesidium and the Executive Council. Tito has been occupying the seat of the Executive Council’s chairman for thirty-five years, and simultaneously he was the head of the Communist party. The 1946 SFRY Constitution granted equal power to both cameras of Federal People’s Assembly, and was said to rely on â€Å"the principles of equality and voluntariness† (Frankel 1955, p. 422): The Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia is a federal people’s State of republican form, a community of peoples equal in rights who, basing themselves on the right to self-determination, which includes the right to separation, have expressed a will to live together in a federal State. At the initial stage of the Yugoslav consolidation under the Communist dictatorship, the group in power was likely to understand that the state â€Å"should not rest on coercion, brute force, or realpolitik†: [The Communists] sought [legitimacy] in an explanatory creation myth: the new Yugoslav state had come into being as a result of â€Å"two kinds of solidarity, that of the Yugoslav nations who had united to fight the enemy, and that of the Partisan veterans, the stari borci, who had done the actual fighting.† (Bokovoy 1998, p. 36) The new Yugoslav leaders relied heavily on the concept of ‘bratsvo i jedinstvo’ (â€Å"brotherhood and unity†). It declared â€Å"that Yugoslavia would be strong, not because its peoples were one, but because they were many, and that strength was born of unity† (Judah 2000, p. 136). However, the concept of unity was treated in a rather original way. Lake and Rothchild (p. 105) paraphrased Djilas (1995) who stated that â€Å"the communist party served as the primary safeguard [to the treat of nationalism] in Yugoslavia, largely through coercion and repression.† A critical eye should not be blinded by the phrase about possible separation of any federal units. Elazar (1991, p. 176) stated that â€Å"the constitutional process in Yugoslavia is very centralized indeed.† As Burg (1982, p. 131) observed: The federal system was originally adopted by [the Yugoslav] leadership in order to accommodate the frustrated national aspirations of the Yugoslav peoples and thereby to mobilize national sentiment in support of the establishment of a socialist order. But commitment to a Stalinist model of development, and ideological conviction that that development would reduce and eventually eliminate the political salience of nationality, led the postwar Communist leadership to subordinate the constituent republics to a powerful federal center and to resist meaningful concessions to their national distinctiveness. (Burg 1982, p. 131) Tito and the Communists re-arranged the ethnic map of the country according to their ideological concerns. Soon after the end of WWII the Yugoslav government began to organize peasantry into cooperatives. The region of Vojvodina became the first experimental ground for collectivization. The leadership moved almost 300,000 Serbs from Croatia, Macedonia, and Bosnia-Hercegovina to Vojvodina to prove the effectiveness of a socialist agrarian experiment â€Å"with the hope of cultivating a Yugoslav identity† (Bokovoy 1998, p. 49). However, in the 1960s, the Yugoslav leadership was split by arguments about â€Å"the question of decentralisation, the introduction of certain market mechanisms and the related issue of increasing republican autonomy† (Judah 2000, p. 144). Hot arguments between elites triggered a tide of reciprocal convictions between the Croats and the Serbs. The Serbs were accused of the attempts to â€Å"Serbianize Croatia,† as Petar Segedin, the president of the Croatian Literary Society, has put it (Judah 2000, p. 146). Bosnia was covertly inflamed by statistics produced by Matica Hrvatska, a Croatian intellectual organisation, to prove the jeopardy of pan-Serbianism. Serbian intellectuals reacted accordingly. The Bosnians and the Serbian Kosovars wanted to get rid of the Albanians, who in turn went into streets demanding a republican status for the province and the establishment of an Albanian-language university in 1968. Despite the evident shift towards liberalism and decentralisation provided by the 1967 and 1971 amendments, there was an â€Å"upsurge of nationalism† that â€Å"met a harsh response† (Hudson 2003, p. 52) from the Yugoslav President. Tito was a proponent of ‘ethnic contracts’: â€Å"nationality or ethnic representatives met with the president in cabinet sessions, where strong differences were sometimes aired by group spokespersons behind closed doors† (Lake & Rothchild 1997, p. 115). The constitution of 1974 seemed to break a fragile balance between the ethnic groups inspired by nationalism (the discussion will continue in the sections above). Cottam (2004, p. 201) called the constitution â€Å"an example of †¦ reduction of power†: In that constitution, Tito gave Kosovo and Vojvodina more power and autonomy (their own assembly, representation in the Serbian assembly, and a turn in the rotating presidency), Serbian power was reduced, and the other republics were reassured that Serbia would not be able to control the federal government. (Cottam 2004, p. 201) It seems that constitutional amendments were introduced partly in response to â€Å"nationalists who favoured the concentration of power with the republican elites† (Hudson 2003, p. 53). Tito warned about the menace caused by those emerging local elites in 1972. By 1980, when he died leaving no political heir to delegate powers to, the Yugoslav power-sharing system – â€Å"a form of coordination in which a somewhat autonomous state and a number of less autonomous ethnic-based and other interests engage in a process of mutual accommodation in accordance with commonly accepted procedural norms, rules, or understandings† (Lake & Rothchild 1997, p. 115) – collapsed. As Chary (2000, p. 735) stated: Tito could not solve all of Yugoslavia’s problems. He was never able truly to unite the country, and hostility among the nationalities remained, although he was able to keep them under control while he lived. When he died, however, these burst forward with a new fury. Post- Tito debate Cottam (2004, p. 201) described the situation in Yugoslavia immediately after Tito’s death in 1980: †¦ the economy was on a downward spiral, and no political leader had emerged who could fill Tito’s role as national unifier. †¦ He did not promote a successor, but instead developed the peculiar idea of a rotating federal presidency, which would rotate among the republics annually. This made it virtually impossible for any single political figure to emerge as a national leader, and it fueled the rise of nationalism among the separate nationalities in Yugoslavia. Despite the economic and political turmoils, as Popov (2000, p. 96) stated, â€Å"[e]ven after his death, Tito’s authority was untouchable.† Dimitrijević (2000, p. 424) also acknowledged that new political leaders (e.g., MiloÃ… ¡ević) were â€Å"actively protecting the cult of Tito’s personality primarily to please the army.† The concept of â€Å"collective leadership† introduced by Tito was aired by the 1980-leadership as â€Å"After Tito – Tito!† (Judah 2000, p. 156). Doder (1993, p. 3) once has remarked that â€Å"Tito’s strong hand was replaced by a council of bland ethnic chieftains.† It has been already noted that Yugoslavia represented an ethnical mosaic with people of different national backgrounds living under the same federal roof. Of course, by the 1980s the SFRY has stopped being an ideal federation where the units equally and eagerly complied with the economic and political dictatorship of the federal center. Since 1963, the Yugoslav leadership attempted at least formulaic retreats towards the ideas of republican individuality and decentralisation . The 1974 SFRY Constitution has granted the status of a â€Å"‘socialist, self-managing, democratic community’ of working people and citizens, and of the particular set of nations and nationalities comprised by it†Ã¢â‚¬  (Burg 1982, p. 141) to each of the republics and autonomous lands. They received a greater portion of authority in regard to decision-making at the local and federal levels. The paradox was that â€Å"Yugoslavia [appeared to be] a country without Yugoslavs† (Lendvai & Parcell 1991, p. 253). In other words, artificially drawn borders failed to coincide with cultural demarcation lines inherited by national memories. In regard to national self-identification, Sekulić, Massey and Hodson (1994) found out that the census category of ‘Yugoslav’ was introduced only in 1961, thus fifteen years upon the creation of the SFRY. However, the term denoted not all citizens of the federation, but â€Å"‘nationally noncommitted persons,’ and was treated as a residual category for those who offered no particular national identity† (Sekulić, Massey & Hodson 1994, p. 84). The identifier ‘Yugoslav’ was eagerly utilized by the Bosnians and the Kosovars of Muslim confession who protested against registering themselves as ‘Serbs’ or ‘Croats’ in the 1961 national census. By 1981, however, more and more people started identifying themselves as ‘Yugoslav’ in Croatia, Vojvodina and even Bosnia. Apart from the trend, the Kosovars preferred to register themselves as either ‘Albans’ or ‘Serbs.’ The trend points at the rise of national self-identification that climaxed after Tito’s death. In the early 1980s, as Burg (1982, p. 133) observed, â€Å"Despite the evolution of consensual decision-making practices, †¦ neither the central party leadership nor the federal government could resolve the conflicts that divided their members, and each fell victim to paralyzing deadlock.† The most vivid example of the post-Tito political imbalance was Kosovo. Hudson (2003, p. 64) called it â€Å"a powerful symbol in Serbian history.† However, the majority (85 percent) of the people who inhabited that autonomous province in the 1980s were ethnical Albanians. The constitution of 1974 granted Kosovo that was dominated by the Albanians enough voting power to take part in presidential and other elections, but many Albanian radical nationalists treated it as minor â€Å"step on the way to a Greater Albania† (Hudson 2003, p. 64). The Kosovan Albanians marched to the streets in 1981 to demand a republican status for their province and, in some ultimate cases, for the unification of Kosovo with Albania. The Yugoslav army entered Kosovo in the late 1983 to face terrorism in response to mass arrests (Hudson says that almost 7,000 people were arrested throughout the 1980s for nationalist activity in Kosovo). The minor group of Kosovars who were Serbs by origin fled the province. Stories began to circulate about the ‘persecution’ of Kosovo Serbs, the destruction of their churches and graveyards and frequent acts of violence. For every real incident, though, the rumour mill could fabricate a thousand more. (Judah 2000, p. 156) The poisonous smog of mythmaking and resurrection of past nationalist sorrows and grievances could not be dispelled by â€Å"the party [that] was governed by conservative nonentities who had been recalled by Tito from retirement, in conjunction with the obedient apparatchiks who had replaced the liberals and technocrats ten years earlier and who had been promoted on the basis of the criteria of obedience and faithful repetition of current slogans† (Dimitrijević 2000, p. 421). As Van Evera (1997, p. 54) has stated, such leadership’s bankruptcy in face of ideological distortion was logical in case of the post-Tito Yugoslavia: Democratic regimes are less prone to mythmaking, because such regimes are usually more legitimate and are free-speech tolerant; hence they can develop evaluative institutions to weed out nationalist myth. Absolutist dictatorships that possess a massive military superiority over their citizens are also less prone to mythmaking, because they can survive without it. The most dangerous regimes are those that depend on some measure of popular consent, but are narrowly governed by unrepresentative elites. Things are still worse if these governments are poorly institutionalized, are incompetent or corrupt for other reasons, or face overwhelming problems that exceed their governing capacities. The case of Kosovo contributed to the wave of Serbian nationalism. As Kozhemiakin (1998, p. 73) observed, â€Å"The most active revisionists were Serbs who were discontented with the structure of the federal system created by Tito †¦ and its alleged discrimination against Serbia.† Once Lendvai & Parcell (1991, p. 253) named four reasons for the nationality problem of Yugoslavia: â€Å"a fundamental conflict between federalism and centralization, a situation in which the largest nation’s overriding claims to power come up against the defence of the interests of the smaller nations and minorities,† â€Å"the bankruptcy of so-called ‘self-management socialism’,† â€Å"economic crisis† and â€Å"the North-South divide within the state.† The access of revisionism on the part of Serbs fitted their national leadership’s call for liberal democracy, that is â€Å"reformists were seeking to mobilize broader popular sentiment against conservative positions among party rank-and-file as well as the wider population, at a time when the economic crisis had discredited the conservatives’ ideological stance† (Gagnon 1997, p. 148). Although any remote possibility of liberalism sent shivers down the spine of Slobodan MiloÃ… ¡ević, a new Chairman of the Serbian League of Communists since 1986, it was he who unified Serbs under the slogan â€Å"No one should be allowed to beat you!† (as cited in Hudson 2003, p. 70) announced on the Kosovo battlefield, another cultural icon for the Serbs, in April 1987. By 1989, the autonomy of Vojvodina and Kosovo within the Serbian republic was abolished. Kosovo was stirred up by Albanian miners who protested against the Serbian expansion. The protestants were publicly justified by the Slovene president Milan Kućan that caused Serbs a great pain. Hudson (2003, pp. 70-71) stated on the point: Milosević’s championing of the Serbian cause against the autonomous provinces was in a sense ‘saying what had for long been unsayable under the prohibitions of the Titoist state. The political inconsistencies of the constitution served as an easily identifiable â€Å"cause† for the multiplicity of ills afflicting post-Tito Serbia. Thus, the terrible impact of the IMF [International Monetary Fund] reforms, which had exacerbated and compounded the tendencies towards secessionism in Slovenia and Croatia, also contributed to the rise of Serbian nationalism. (Hudson 2003,) In other words, it seems that not only MiloÃ… ¡ević was to be blamed for the disintegration of the Yugoslav state and the mass hysteria of nationalism torturing the South Slavs throughout the 1990s. To conclude the section about the post-Tito debates about the future of Yugoslavia without its charismatic proponent of Non-Alignment Communism and the artificially centralized federation, it makes sense to return to Sekulić, Massey and Hodson’s research (1994). The scholars observed a significant shift in public opinion from the consolidated Yugoslav national identity to the nation- and ethnic-specific formulations. The shift was made especially vivid from 1985 to 1989 across Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia. The American scholars stated that the Yugoslav national identity was significantly affected by four factors: modernization, political participation, demographic factors, and majority/minority status. They emphasized that the concept of ‘Yugoslavism’ became a defensive strategy for the communities portrayed as minority nationalities (the cases of Croat-born individuals in Bosnia and Serbia, and of Serbs in Croatia). Sekulić, Massey and Hodson (1994, p. 95) finally stated: While this failure to establish a shared identity among the people of this region cannot be said to explain the disintegration of Yugoslavia, it is apparent that a shared identity was not much in evidence as a mediating mechanism sustaining Yugoslavia through difficult transitions or slowing its disintegration into warring national camps. Without any restrictive mechanisms to stop the SFRY disintegration, the country sloped down into the chaos of national conflicts. New Elites, Old Leaders’ Policy:   Post-Federalism Judah (2000) was evidently right saying that â€Å"history is accelerating† (p. 295), meaning that, â€Å"While the great empires of the past †¦ lasted for centuries, ‘modern’ empires are increasingly short-lived affairs.† The researcher also demonstrated that history repeated itself when he restored â€Å"all the old arguments which had so sapped the Yugoslavia born in 1918† (Judah 2000, p. 104). In 1918, Stjepan Radić, the leader of the Croatian Peasant Party, declared to the deputies of a National Council of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs: †¦ you think it is enough to say we Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes are one people because we speak one language and that on account of this we must also have a unitary centralist state †¦ and that only such a linguistic and state unity can make us happy. . . . our peasant in general, and especially our Croat peasant, does not wish to hear one more thing about †¦ a state which you are imposing on him by force. . . . You think that you can frighten the people and that in this way you will win the people to your politics. Maybe you will win the Slovenes, I do not know. Maybe you will also win the Serbs. But I am certain that you will never win the Croats . . . because the whole Croat peasant people are equally against your centralism as against militarism, equally for a republic as for a popular agreement with the Serbs. And should you want to impose your centralism by force, this will happen. We Croats shall say openly and clearly: If the Serbs really want to have such a centralist state and government, may God bless them with it, but we Croats do not want any state organization except a confederated federal republic. (as cited in Judah 2000, pp. 105-6) Radić was excluded from the party for his words, and the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was declared on 1 December 1918. From this date onwards people of Yugoslavia could at least hope for, if not live in, the state where every nation would enjoy equality and solidarity. The Yugoslav constitution of 1974 put an end to those idealistic aspirations. Dimitrijević (2000, p. 399) named it to be â€Å"one of the reasons for the civil war in that country, or at least as one of the contributing factors leading to Yugoslavia’s disorderly and bloody dissolution.† The document’s aim was to smooth †¦ a general pattern of inter-regional and inter-ethnic fragmentation which had occurred in the late 1960s but which Tito had sharply quashed through the ‘surgical’ use of military police power and political purges of the regional party machines. (Cohen 1992, p. 304) Pursuing such goal, the constitution of 1974 allowed a few liberal amendments conducted in 1971 in favor of republics and autonomous regions. As Burg (1982) observed, the Montenegro region was able to extend the conceptual framework of ‘the republic’ by introducing categorization by ethnicity. A functionary of the Montenegrin regional parliament notes that â€Å"public discussions of the Draft Constitution showed that the constitutional definition of the republic has politico-psychological significance. . . .† Added to the draft definition was a section that â€Å"emphasizes that Montenegro is the state of the Montenegrin people and members of other nations and nationalities. . . .† (Burg 1982, p. 141) Serbia was defined as â€Å"†the state of the Serbian people and parts of other nations and nationalities who live and realize their sovereign rights in it† (Burg 1982, p. 141). Despite those â€Å"concessions to the linguistic, cultural and corporate political rights of the nations and nationalities,† as Burg (1982, p. 142) observed, the constitution of 1974 â€Å"continues to hold the line against changes that might threaten the cohesiveness of Yugoslav society.† However, in 1992 it became apparent that those few ‘concessions’ became a ‘magic stick’ for â€Å"ethno-regional political and bureaucratic elites† that allowed them â€Å"to substantially advance their autonomy and power during the 1980s† (Cohen 1992, p. 304). Dimitrijević (2000) argued that the constitution of 1974 contained at least some grains of confederate structure that would be possible for Yugoslavia on due time. Article 3 defined the republics as state structures organized according to the principles of ‘sovereignty’ and ‘equal rights.’ Dimitrijević stressed that the term ‘sovereignty’ was used only in regard to the republics but not the federation itself. Part I of Basic Principles became â€Å"an ominous statement† (Dimitrijević 2000, p. 406) in this context so far as it talked about â€Å"the right to secession, on the basis of their will freely expressed in the common struggle of all nations and nationalities in the National Liberation War and Socialist Revolution, and in conformity with their historic aspirations† (as cited in Dimitrijević 2000, p. 406). A reference to ‘historic aspirations’ was really dangerous. As Van Evera (1997, p. 46) has noted, when â€Å"the groups with the greatest historic grievances [are] also the groups with the greatest power,† such â€Å"combination brings together both the motive and the capacity to make trouble† and becomes really explosive. This happened when MiloÃ… ¡ević initiated the â€Å"wave of nationalist euphoria† (Judah 2000, p. 163), and †¦ the Serbs were going through an exercise of mass catharsis. All the old fears and the old banned nationalist songs bubbled back up to the surface. (Judah 2000, p. 163) The Serbs always used to victimize themselves and, to be sincere, they had enough reasons to do so. However, that aggrievement, as Van Evera, was far from being passive. General Veljko Kadijević, Yugoslavia’s defence minister, played a significant role in arming the Serbs’ national grievance. By 1990 the Yugoslav military adopted the system of the Territorial Defence (TO) and Total National Defence. This meant that, apart from the regular army, each republic had reserve forces to call upon in the event of war. These were to be local forces which, in the event of a breakdown in communications, would be able to continue functioning on their own. For political guidance they would work closely with the leadership of the local Communist Party. By substituting the Communist Party with the SDS [Serbian Democratic Party], the Serbian leadership was able to make use of the TO system for mass mobilisations of Serbs in what was to become Krajina and then in Bosnia. (Judah 2000, p. 170) When Slovenia declared independence on 25 June, 1991, within the following forty-eight hours the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA) attempted to retake the Slovene border that had turned from the inter-republican into the international one. The Slovene TO forces blocked the JNA soldiers who were predominantly conscripts. As Judah (2000, pp. 178-9) observed, The fact that the army had got involved in fighting in Slovenia was at the time seen by some as proof that nostalgic communist generals were desperate to preserve the old country. In fact it was nothing of the kind. Many people were of course deeply confused and loyalties were divided, but in the end men like Kadijević had already made the decision that as Yugoslavia was dying they had little choice but to seize as much of it as they could for the Serbs. Judging from the researchers’ accounts (Judah 2000; Hudson 2000; Dimitrijević 2000), there could be no bloodshed if there was a chance of a proper confederalizing process. Dimitrijević (2000, p. 421) blamed †¦ constitutional experts, political scientists and jurists who do not seem to have made any effort to provide constitutional solutions for real political difficulties, to secure alternative decision making in the case of the failure of the party system and thus not to save Yugoslavia if it was not wanted, but to increase the chances for a reasonable transition into explicitly confederate arrangements and the peaceful dissolution or separation of the constituent units. Another group of researchers (Gagnon 1997; Snyder & Ballentine 1996) accused Yugoslav political and military elites of playing with the dangerous fire of nationalism. Snyder and Ballentine (1996) argued that nationalism could be an incident product of the old and new elites re-arranging the informational marketplace in democratizing states. Snyder and Ballentine (1996, p. 10) introduced the concept of ‘the marketplace of ideas† as the situation â€Å"in which contending discourses and evidence confront each other directly on an even playing field.† The scholars argued that the Yugoslav marketplace of ideas was highly segmented in the 1980s that caused an informational imbalance: Tito’s decentralizing reforms of the 1960s, which were intended in part to assuage and defuse ethno-nationalism, put Yugoslavia’s media in the hands of regional leaderships, which in the 1980s fell into the hands of nationalists like MiloÃ… ¡ević. This federalization of power left pan-Yugoslav reformers like Ante Marković with no instrument for transcending the Serb and Croat nationalists’ media monopoly over their respective ethnic niche markets. (Snyder & Ballentine 1996, p. 21) It seems that the post-Tito Yugoslavia was a place where a severe intra-elite competition took place. Cohen (1992, p. 302) spoke about â€Å"the impressive pluralization of the Yugoslav political landscape† after Tito, accompanied by the lamentably â€Å"rapid erosion of federal authority.† Prime Minister Ante Marković, who had skillfully reoriented federal government policy along post-socialist reformist lines, made an admirable effort to implement country-wide economic and political changes during 1990, but his ability to fully accomplish such measures was stymied by the autarkic policies of contending ethno-regional elites. Marković’s formation of a federally-oriented party in mid-1990 – the Alliance of Reform Forces – to garner support for the unity of the country looked initially promising, but the Alliance did poorly against ethnically and regionally-oriented parties in the republican elections. (Cohen 1992, p. 302) Snyder & Ballentine (1996, p. 16) explained the shifts of political regime on the scale from autocratic to pluralistic in economic terms: As a democratizing political system opens up, old elites and rising counter-elites must compete for the support of new entrants into the marketplace through popular appeals, including appeals to the purported common interests of elites and mass groups in pursuing nationalistic aims against out-groups. In many instances, including the case of Serbian President Slobodan MiloÃ… ¡ević, these elites evince little interest in nationalism until rising pressure for mass political participation gives them an incentive to do so. It is interesting that Gagnon (1997, p. 134) also talked about elites manipulating public opinion and remaking a political scene to suit their needs: †¦ violent conflict along ethnic cleavages is provoked by elites in order to create a domestic political context where ethnicity is the only politically relevant identity. It thereby constructs the individual interest of the broader population in terms of the threat to the community defined in ethnic terms. Such a strategy is a response by ruling elites to shifts in the structure of domestic political and economic power: by constructing individual interest in terms of the threat to the group, endangered elites can fend off domestic challengers who seek to mobilize the population against the status quo, and can better position themselves to deal with future challenges. Gagnon pointed an indicative finger solely at Serbian elite for all the internal wars that shook Yugoslavia in the 1990s. Conversely, Hudson (2003) referred to Croatian and Bosnian Muslim nationalists as warmongers. But the researcher saved even bitterer accusations for international elites: Without the prospect – and eventual achievement – of international recognition, and the acceptance by a number of foreign states of the arguments of the nationalists, it is possible that a negotiated settlement could have been arrived at which would either have maintained some form of Yugoslavia, or achieved a peaceful dissolution. (Hudson 2003, p. 89) To provide an account of Yugoslavia sliding towards disintegration, it makes sense to summarize the viewpoints of that time Yugoslav political leaders in regard to the federation/confederation dichotomy. Serbs, Croats and Muslims were the groups most susceptible to nationalism so far as they were scattered across the republics and districts. Two of those groups identified themselves as ‘nations’ by language, history, and culture, whereas Muslims distinguished themselves from the other Yugoslavs on the principle of confession. Both Serbs and Croats had their own republics of Serbia and Croatia, respectively, but each republic (as well as other regions) had the so-called ‘pockets,’ like Krajina between Serbia and Croatia or Kosovo, where various nations, nationalities and ethnic groups were closely intermingled. Montenegrins historically and culturally associated themselves with Serbs although did not want to lose their independence. Slovenia was rather ethnically homogenous, whereas Bosnia hosted people of not only various ethnicities but also of various confessions. As it has been mentioned above, a Bosnian Croat Marković who was the last Yugoslavia’s Prime Minister (March 1989 – December 1991) was the proponent of pan-Yugoslavism so that the country of South Slavs despite its motley ethnic composition would be a solid economic and political body. The Serbs insisted on centralization of the state that resembled a person who carried fire in one hand and water in the other. The Serb leadership called for preserving the federal structure because in case of confederalizing many Serbs would stay outside the Serbian Republic borders. The Bosnians initially supported the idea of a centralized state, whereas the Croats and Slovenes violently opposed it, demanding either to weaken federative bonds or let them secede. In such a hot atmosphere, the Yugoslavs stepped into â€Å"the idiotic chaos in which the state died† (Judah 2000, p. 109). The Slide toward Disintegration Slovenia declared independence on 25 June, 1991, and issued its declaration of sovereignty in July 1991. Croatia seceded from the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY) the same day as Slovenia although it declared independence only on October 8, 1991. Thus, these two former SFRY-republics were the first to flee the burning house of Yugoslavia despite loud protests of Serbs, both the Belgrade leadership and the common people from northern Dalmatia, Lika, the Kordun, and Banija that were situated in the then sovereign Croatia. By that time, those Serbs who lived on the territory of then sovereign Croatia have already tasted all bitterness of Tudjman’s regime. Croats elected Franjo Tudjman, the leader of Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ), as president in May, 1990, †¦ in an anti-semitic, anti-Serb campaign under slogans such as ‘a thousand years of uninterrupted Croatian statehood’. †¦ Slogans like ‘Croatia for the Croats only’, led to excesses against the Serbs, who were not only pushed out of their positions in the police force – a move authorized by the Croatian government, but also from posts in administration and enterprises. (Hudson 2003, p. 79) Once could say that a catastrophe started in January 1990, when Slovenian deputies aired their vision of the Yugoslav Communist League as â€Å"an alliance of republican communist parties† (Hudson 2003, p. 78) at the YCL’s Extraordinary 14th Congress session. They aimed at diminishing the authority of the old partocracy and to pave the road for secession. In April 1990, Milan Kućan, once a communist and then the leader of a centre-right coalition, has easily won the republican elections in Slovenia. In May 1990, the Yugoslav Communist League was dissolved by the Yugoslav Congress, and multi-party elections were held in all republics. By that time the Serbs of the Serbian Republic have been applauding to the three-component strategy of the conservatives and their leader MiloÃ… ¡ević who formally assumed presidency on 8 May 1989. MiloÃ… ¡ević and his allies have already indisposed the Yugoslav army against internal and external enemies, more or less successfully repressed the reported cases of ethnic â€Å"genocide† against Serbs from Kosovan Albanians, and have made multiple attempts â€Å"to portray Serbia as the victim of Yugoslavia, setting the stage for attacks on the other republics’ autonomy free multi-party elections† (Gagnon 1997, p. 150). The Serbian new elite were obsessed with the idea of ‘Pan-Serbianism.’ By the fall of 1990 the Serbian conservative government had dissolved the Kosovo Assembly whose Albanian delegates drafted a 140-article Constitution of the â€Å"sovereign Republic of Kosovo† demanding a status of independent Yugoslavia’s unit for their autonomous district. As Cohen (1992, p. 310) have noted, â€Å"The Serbian government labelled the ‘so-called’ Constitution as an illegitimate action on the part of ‘a movement directly and exclusively targeted at the breaking up the territorial integrity of Serbia and Yugoslavia’.† In 1990, as Judah (2000, p. 165) observed, only Bosnians â€Å"were still talking about keeping Yugoslavia together,† whereas â€Å"MiloÃ… ¡ević ‘s Serbian nationalism was the greatest boost to Tudjman’s Croatian nationalism, [so] that the Pandora’s box had been opened [and] there was no shuttin g it.† On 12 May 1991 referendum in Krajina was held for the local Serbs to choose either to join the Republic of Serbia, â€Å"and thus remain in Yugoslavia with Serbia, Montenegro and others that want to preserve Yugoslavia† (Judah 2000, p. 180), or be labelled as predators. It was one of many Serbian referendums that were to punctuate the political landscape over the next few years. It was a farce dressed up as democracy, by which people who had been bombarded by a single media message were herded to the polls to turn in the requisite popular mandate for the authorities. There was never any public debate on the question and it could be assumed that if you were not going to vote as the authorities wanted then you were not a Serb and hence had no right still to be living where you were. (Judah 2000, p. 180) On June 30, 1991, the Council for the Defense of the Constitution held a secret meeting, when the Serbian representative, Borislav Jović, officially stated that the Serbian leadership would not object to Slovene secession. The Federal Defense Secretary at the time, General Veljko Kadijević, warned that once Slovenia was let go, the JNA would defend the borders of a new Yugoslavia. Judah (2000, p. 178) called that meeting â€Å"simply the last nail in Yugoslavia’s coffin.† To utilize the concept proposed by Snyder and Ballentine (1996), the Yugoslavian ‘marketplace of ideas’ was not only segmented but multi-layered. That was a time of secret alliances and councils’ closed sessions. In public the presidents of the six republics were still arguing about whether some form of Yugoslavia could be preserved. MiloÃ… ¡ević wanted a ‘modern federation’, which was code for Serbian domination. Kućan and Tudjman wanted ‘an asymmetric federation’, which was code for independence while still enjoying the benefits of Yugoslavia without paying for them. Alija Izetbegović of Bosnia and Kiro Gligorov of Macedonia argued for a compromise, but having little political clout they were ignored. (Judah 2000, p. 180) Gagnon (1997, p. 157) directly called the elite’s policy of shaping public opinion Machiavellian: The Serbian conservatives’ response was to continue to demonize other ethnic nationalities, and also to begin provoking confrontations and violent conflicts along ethnic lines and to discredit the very idea of a federal Yugoslavia, calling it the creation of a Vatican-Comintern conspiracy. While the public had to listen to those hypocritical debates in media, the so-called RAM plan was secretly adopted in 1991-1992. It was said to allow the Serb occupation of territory in Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina and the invasion of the JNA troops into a Muslim area. Croatia and Serbia armed at full speed and started mutual firebombing. On 27 April 1992, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) was founded as comprising Serbia and Montenegro. It was supposed to enlarge the FRY at the expense of Krajina and some territories carved from Bosnia-Herzegovina to form the Republika Srpska. The FRY constitution proclaimed the newly born state to be the successor state of the old Yugoslavia that caused active protests from other former republics. And only a decade later people could read the sincere opinion of one of the key figures of that period on the issue of preserving Yugoslavia.   Judah (2000, p. 201) reported that on 23 January 1992 Nikola Koljević, once a teacher from Sarajevo and then one of the most radical pro-Serbian nationalists from the SDS (Serbian Democratic Party), said: It’s time to stop this absurd idea of a mini-Yugoslavia this is just a game. If only Serbs and Montenegrins want it, what’s the point of trying to force others to stay? We should start thinking in terms of a new federation of Serb lands. When the SDS leader was pronouncing those words, the Serbs (still federals) and Croats (already non-Yugoslavs) have just agreed to cease fire under the pressure of international community. The Bosnian Serbs have gone through a referendum held in November 1991, in which they voted down the possibility of Bosnia secession from Yugoslavia. A month later upon Koljević’s confession on the issue of federalism, Bosnia-Hercegovina declared its independence. That resulted in the Republika Srpska (created by Serbs leaving in Bosnia-Hercegovina) declaring its own independence under the leadership of Radovan Karadzić. The civil war in Bosnia between Serbs, Croats, and Muslims continued for three and a half years ending on 1 November 1995 due to the armed interference of the United States, United Nations and NATO military forces. In 1997, MiloÃ… ¡ević was elected President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavi. The third wave of terror and aggression poured down onto Yugoslavia at night between March 24 and 25 1999 when the United States bombed Belgrade in response to the reports of Kosovan Albanians about Serbs treating them inappropriately. On 9 June the same year Yugoslav military leaderships agreed to remove their forces from Kosovo in exchange to the withdrawal of the NATO army and the entry of an international security force. The bombardment was stopped on 10 June with the adoption of UN Resolution 1244. In September 2000, MiloÃ… ¡ević lost in the Yugoslav presidential election. As Hudson (2003, p. 138) observed: The US and the EU used these elections finally to achieve what they had been trying to do for over a decade, and had failed to do through bombing – to satisfy their own economic and strategic goals in the post-Soviet period. These included the integration of all of the component republics of the former Yugoslavia into the free-market economic system, and the removal of a government in Belgrade which had not only a socialist economic orientation, but also a strategic orientation away from NATO and towards Russia. That was the end of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Conclusion One would say that it was Serb nationalism that provoked counternationalism in other Yugoslav republics. However, it would be better to state without bias that Serbs are to be blamed as much as Croats or Albanians in the dissolution of Yugoslavia and mass killings. On the level of the state or quasi-state, new elites used national claims over pieces of Yugoslavia’s territory (that was an ethnic mosaic) to pursue their own economic and political goals. The struggle for power was not only for Serbian or Albanian control over Kosovo but for power per se. In their ambitious attempts, new political elites exploited the disturbances that already existed in the general populace and, when desirable and feasible, they created new turmoils. Disturbances stemmed from the national identities of each group and from the ways in which those identities played out in everyday life. So Judah was right (2000, p. 313) stating that there was â€Å"the cancer of discontent, which ended up killing Yugoslavia.† Bibliography Bokovoy, M. K. 1998, Peasants and Communists: Politics and Ideology in the Yugoslav Countryside, 1941-1953, University of Pittsburgh Press, Pittsburgh, Pa. Burg, S. L. 1982, ‘Republican and Provincial Constitution-Making in Yugoslavia Politics’, Publius, vol. 12, no. 1, 131–55. Chary, F. B. 2000, ‘Tito’ in World Leaders of the Twentieth Century, Salem Press, Pasadena, Calif. Cohen, L. J. 1992, ‘Post-Federalism and Judicial Change in Yugoslavia: The Rise of Ethno-Political Justice’, International Political Science Review, vol. 13, no. 3, pp. 301-319. Cottam, M. L. 2004, Introduction to Political Psychology, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Mahwah, N.J. Dimitrijević, V. 2000, ‘The 1974 Constitution as a Factor in the Collapse of Yugoslavia, or as a Sign of Decaying Totalitarianism’ in The Road to War in Serbia: Trauma and Catharsis, ed. N. Popov & D. Gojković, New York Central European University Press, Budapest. Doder, D. 1993, ‘Yugoslavia: New War, Old Hatreds’, Foreign Policy, no. 91, pp. 3-23. Elazar, D. J. 1991, Exploring Federalism, University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, AL. Frankel, J. 1955, ‘Federalism in Yugoslavia’, The American Political Science Review, vol. 49, no. 2, pp. 416-430. Gagnon, V.P. 1997, ‘Ethnic Nationalism and International Conflict: The Case of Serbia’ in Nationalism and Ethnic Conflict, ed. Michael E. Brown, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass. Hudson, K. 2003, Breaking the South Slav Dream: The Rise and Fall of Yugoslavia, VA Pluto Press, Sterling. Judah, T. 2000, The Serbs History, Myth, and the Destruction of Yugoslavia, Yale University Press, New Haven, Conn. Kozhemiakin, A. V. 1998, Expanding the Zone of Peace?: Democratization and International Security, Palgrave Macmillan, New York. Lake, D. & Rothchild, D. 1997, ‘Containing Fear: The Origins and Management of Ethnic Conflict’ in Nationalism and Ethnic Conflict, ed. Michael E. Brown, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass. Lendvai, P. & L. Parcell. 1991, ‘Yugoslavia without Yugoslavs: The Roots of the Crisis’, International Affairs, vol. 67, no. 2, pp. 251-261. Popov, N. 2000, ‘Traumatology of the Party State’ in The Road to War in Serbia: Trauma and Catharsis, ed. N. Popov & D. Gojković, New York Central European University Press, Budapest. Sekulić, D., G. Massey & R. Hodson. 1994, ‘Who Were the Yugoslavs? Failed Sources of a Common Identity in the Former Yugoslavia’, American Sociological Review, vol. 59, no. 1, pp. 83-97. Snyder, J. & K. Ballentine. 1996, ‘Nationalism and the Marketplace of Ideas’, International Security, vol. 21, no. 2, pp. 5-40. Van Evera, S. 1997, ‘Hypotheses on Nationalism and War’ in Nationalism and Ethnic Conflict, ed. M. Brown, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA. Williams, J. 1998, Legitimacy in International Relations and the Rise and Fall of Yugoslavia, Palgrave Macmillan, New York.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

The Role of Brand Prominence

In today’s society more now than ever, is run by money. Even though most say we’re all considered equal, many people still pass judgments based on one’s social status and how much money a person is worth. People in society today like to flaunt their wealth and constantly try to outdo each other despite what really might actually be going on. Things such as the bigger house, the brand name clothes, expensive jewelry, and the nicest car are what people may use to determine their social status.With our society, people feel as though they gain more respect if they appear of a higher social class. Unfortunately, in America we are divided up into classes based upon monetary status and how we are perceived. These classes consist of the lower class, the lower middle class which is about 20% of the population and is mostly made up of minority groups. Then there’s the lower middle and upper middle class which is the vast majority of the population. Then last but not least there is the upper class; this class is only made up of about 1%-3% of the American population.The total wealth of the upper class equals the wealth of the lower 95% of the American population. The extremely small group of wealthy people is what most people aspire to become because is today’s world, money is power. Which for most people money is everything and you can’t them any different. The popular phrase †money can’t buy happiness† is not more or less completely true. Despite what most people may think or say money can bring you remotely close to happiness. Everyone knows money can buy friendship or love but it can buy that luxurious lifestyle you always dreamed of.Money can build character which would contribute to your social status. It also says a lot about you and how you portray yourself to others. Having an abundant amount of money determines your health, education, and your standard way of living. Being wealthy also puts you in a co nfident mindset and can help you become a better person in life or do the wrong things with your money and have all your hard work go to waste. Even though everyone is entitled to the same rights those people who are in the lower class have to work much harder to reach success.It’s obvious that wealthier people have more advantages over those in the lower class. That also puts those in that class in a tighter spot but pushes them to move towards their goals and work harder. On the outside all Americans have equal rights no matter what class you’re in but yet those much wealthier have more access and advantages to a better life due to the fact that money is power. Those types of saying and judgments are what people live by day to day to make those who work hard feel as though they’re not working hard enough or just no worthy.The average person is found working at a fast food restaurant or a supermarket checkout line doing their hard earns work. The average rich m an is sitting behind a desk with an expensive suit in a leather chair or found in an emergency room operating on someone. Most say if you don’t go to college you’ll never make it to be successful which is not entirely true. There are plenty of people with college degrees that still ended up in the lower social class because of something that they chose to do or didn’t do. For instance, what would you say about someone who is living in a trailer park?Poor, dirty, lazy, uneducated trashy slob but that’s only said because we’re in a different social class than them people who live like them may not look at it that way. You never know, what are they saying about us? Just because someone is living differently than you doesn’t mean label them to a lower class. You really don’t know what they’re going through or have been through that landed them there. Being a part of a certain social class takes a toll on everyone who tries to be pe rceived other than whom they really are.People should just accept the class that they are in and work towards bigger things than putting themselves in a much worse situation trying to do differently than what they are used to. Healthcare is a major issue due to how the classes are divided. People who are in the lower class can’t afford it but they’re the ones most likely to become ill and need to be treated. Those of the upper class appear to be healthier and have healthcare but really don’t utilize it. These are issues that should be reviewed and worked out no matter what social class your apart of.In conclusively no matter how hard you may work in life, the people of highest or higher social status or class will get the better treatment and uphold a better lifestyle with more opportunities in life.References Han, Y. , Nunes, J. , & Dreze, X. (2010). Signaling Status with Luxury Goods: The Role of Brand Prominence. Journal of Marketing,  74(4), 15-30. doi:10. 1509/jmkg. 74. 4. 15. Retrieved from http://search. ebscohost. com/login. aspx? direct=true&db=ufh&AN=51168738&site=ehost-live

Friday, September 27, 2019

5 minute informative speech on a theme of peace or justice Essay

5 minute informative speech on a theme of peace or justice - Essay Example God created the world and humans drew the boundaries. Sometimes in the name of religion and sometimes to show that one is mightier than the other, wars are always the worst face of our civilization. As we proceed we will discuss the reasons the consequences of war and what is the role of every individual in making this world a better place to live? The current obstacle in today’s world is the terrorism, the biggest threat to the world peace. The word terror or terrorism is derived from the Latin verb terrere meaning to cause to tremble. Terrorism is being used as a tool in the name of religion to fulfil political motives or to gain criminal motives. Wars do not bring justice but justice always has the potential to curb the greatest wars. The recent war in Afghanistan boasted to bring democracy in the country and liberate it’s women, but we see no difference in the state even now, people are still living in terror and most of the people have gained nothing but underwent grief of losing their homes and loved ones. It’s not that peace is impossible to achieve, people like Kofi Annan, Jim Carter are doing great efforts in this regard but sustainable peace can develop only when it is within the people, the elements who are distracted and hamper the peace are actually disturbed within, until they learn to to be peaceful within they will always cause grief and misery. The nuclear weapon age has brought human civilization on the extremities of destruction. Terrorism around the world is acting as a hurdle in the way of peaceful coexistence of different cultures around the world. In this situation the world remains threatened by the possibilities of more wars and destruction. Conditions worsen when countries involve in solving problems through means of wars. It’s not that the cause of wars arise out of selfish motives and political gains but it is either true that most of the times the scenario is usually this. Peace and

Thursday, September 26, 2019

You need to choose a topic from the materials Essay

You need to choose a topic from the materials - Essay Example The report raises addresses about responsibility. Since border executors are significant members of the Department of Homeland Security, they are not subjected to the same open examination as cops who utilize their weapons. It additionally addresses if, in the race to secure the border, operators are constantly enough prepared and it raises the inquiry: why arent these cases being indicted? Also the authorities still are not equipped to give a fulfilling reply. In order to go deeper into the report it is necessary to know the history of the borderlands of Mexico (GOP Legislators Visiting Mexico Concerned About Border Security 2001). The area of land which is presently known as Central America was the original land of ‘Mestizos’, who were partly Spanish and partly native. The Mestizos, started their journey towards south-west of United States for a better living, which is now known as Mexico (U.S.-Mexican Border Violence 2010). As United States of America was expanding, b oth in population and in size, this newly emerged Americans invaded the area, so long occupied by the Mestizos (Bergmark, Regan, Barr, and Garcia 2010). A fierce war broke out. Mestizos were defeated and finally peace was reinstated with the ‘Treaty of Guadalupe’ in 1848. Hundreds of Mexicans lost their lives in the war and thousands of them became homeless. Though some of the Mexicans fought back, the overall situation of the country was pathetic, full of terror and without having any law and order (Salividar 1993). American companies now came into the forefront. They entered by force into the Mexican Territory, and set up factories/mills/companies to maximize their profit by exploiting the local labor-force and the natural resources. Peso, the local currency was devalued and the economy of the country suffered due to large unemployment (Paredes 1991). The people, who were staying near the ‘borderline’ between USA and Mexico, now had to take an important d ecision of their

The Role of Religion in the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Essay

The Role of Religion in the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade - Essay Example The researcher states that in the Americas, the European masters claimed that it was through Christianity that the African slaves would be compliant to their rule but the unkind treatment of the slaves which led to many deaths illustrates how religion was used to justify the economic interests of the traders and the consequences of the trade. This paper gives a critical analysis of the role of religion in the development of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade in relation to the capture, domestication, and control of the African slaves from Africa to the Americas. Transatlantic Slave Trade The Trans-Atlantic slave trade took place from the 16th to the 19th centuries across the Atlantic Ocean. Slaves from the west and central Africa were traded between Africans and slave traders from Europe. The European then shipped the slaves across the Atlantic to South and North America. In the Americas, the slaves were forced to work in the British colonies. The slavery involved forced labor in the pla ntation of tobacco, coffee, cotton, cocoa, and sugar. Moreover, the slaves were forced to work in silver and gold mines. Some slaves also worked as servants while others toiled in the construction industry and rice fields. The British, Portuguese, Americans, the Dutch, the Spanish and the French were involved in the slave trade. The local tribal leaders in the West and Central Africa sold the slaves to the slave traders. The beginning of the trans-Atlantic slave trade was motivated by religious factors. The influence of Bartolome de las Casas, who was a Spanish missionary of the Catholic Church led to the replacement of the Amerindians in America's labor force with Africans. When Christopher Columbus arrived in the west, he encountered the Amerindians who were the natives in the Americas. The Amerindians provided hard labor in the western plantation. The settlement of the Spanish in this area was motivated by the need to find gold. The determination of the Spanish led to forced labo r on the Amerindians in search of gold. Many Amerindians died as a result of the harsh treatment in the forced labor. However, most of the Amerindians died out of the attack of epidemic diseases. The significant reduction in the number of Amerindians and the disputed harsh treatment of the Amerindians is what gave birth to the transatlantic trade because Africans were targeted as the replacement of the Amerindians as slave workers in the Americas. The Role of Religion The Trans-Atlantic trade is known for the inhumane treatment of slaves and the forced labor which they were forced to provide in the Americas. The happenings during the trade are usually referred as the conquest of the Americas. This conquest led to a great loss of human life and destruction of African cultures. Religion played a significant role in this trade as illustrated by the different religious backgrounds of the slave traders in the transatlantic slave trade. The European for example entered Africa as a way of spreading the Christian religion to the local people. On the other hand, the Muslim Arabs who were involved in the slave trade were motivated by the need to convert as many people as possible to the Islamic religion.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Marketing Plan for a new Organic goods company Assignment

Marketing Plan for a new Organic goods company - Assignment Example An attempt has been made to project the likely inflows of the company under three different scenarios; pessimistic, optimistic, and realistic. Finally the paper refers to the controls Whole Foods needs to be put in place to achieve success in UK. 2.0 Situation Analysis Whole Foods Market, Inc. (hereafter referred as Whole Foods) is a foods supermarket chain based in Austin, Texas. The company’s net sales have consistently increased over the last few years. The company generated net sales of $11.7 billion in 2012, up from $ 8 billion in 2008. During the same period the chain’s operating income spiked from $236 million to $744 million. Whole Foods also managed to keep its identical store sales growth at 8.4 percent in 2011 and 2012 (Whole Foods Market, 2013). Whole Foods continued to grow its operations at a decent pace in 2012. It opened 25 new stores and forayed into eight new markets. On a cumulative basis, the food chain expanded its square footage by 8 percent to 12. 7 million. While the overall financial results look healthy, Whole Foods is encountering some problem in its UK operations and has incurred losses in that country. Whole Foods is however confident of reversing its fortunes in UK despite the tough trading conditions. As of now, Whole Foods has seven stores in UK. It intends to open few more in the near future (Best, 2012). 2.1 PESTEL Analysis The PESTEL analysis of UK suggests that the overall business environment in UK is favorable for Whole Foods. At this juncture, the political stability in the country is an issue. However, this concern is mitigated as the government is pro-business. The UK economy is not in the best of shapes; however this too appears to be a passing phase. The healthful food options of Whole Foods appeal to all social classes. The company’s products may also help reduce the incidence of obesity in the country. In general, the technological and environmental forces represent an opportunity for Whole Foods since the company is in a position to embrace new technology and strengthen its sustainability programs. A detail of the various macroeconomic forces and their impact on Whole Foods is given in Appendix 1. 2.2 SWOT Analysis Opportunities Threats Strengths The company deals in organic food which is more healthful than inorganic food. The growing awareness about the health benefit means that the demand for the products of Whole Foods Market will not decline. One of the biggest strengths of Whole Foods Market is its compensation structure. The company pays its employees really well. This strength will enable the company attract the talented workforce in U.K. Organic food is more expensive than inorganic food. Whole Foods Market can still convince the customers to buy the products of the company given its highest commitment to quality, sustainability and welfare of the community. Food-consciousness is not high in UK. Whole Foods Market can bank on its rich experience and replicate its s uccessful U.S. model in UK as well. Whole Foods has a reputation of delivering high-quality, nutritious  food. Thus it will be able to create demand for its products in UK where consumer awareness is lacking. Weaknesses The high price of the products tends to put off many consumers. Whole Foods however strives to work efficiently and maintain the freshness of

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

First Crusade Military Perspectives Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 words

First Crusade Military Perspectives - Essay Example 72). At the beginning of 1113 A.C., Baldwin, the King of Jerusalem, raided into the seigniory of Damascus. Unable to oppose him single-handed, Toghtakin, the Lord of Damascus, invoked the assistance of Moudud of Mosul (Irwin 1998, p. 75). In July 1113 the combined forces of the Lords of Mosul, Damascus, Sinjar2, and Maridin marched into Palestine. In a battle near Tiberias, the Franks were routed with terrible loss, and a large number of them were drowned in the lake and in the Jordan. In June 11193 they were again defended at a place called al-Balat by Ilgazi, the Lord of Maridin. Even the Egyptians won some successes on the sea coast (p. 77). But the Crusaders had the whole of Europe at their back; the reinforcements which poured in for them from all parts of Christendom, the assasincation of Moudud, who was stabbed by a Batinia after the battle of Tiberias, and the division of the chiefs, all helped them to recover their grounds (p. 78). Sultan Muhammad died in 511 A.H., and this death was not without effect on the fortunes of the Muslims and Christians. He was succeeded in the over-lordship by his brother Sanjar, the last hero of a heroic race, and in the succession of his private dominions of his son Mahmud. In 516 A.H. Zangi obtained from Sultan Mahmud the city of Wasit as an appanage, and the post of Commissary4 at Basra. Four year later the government of Mosul and Upper Mesopotamia was conferred on him, with the title of Atabek ("Prince Tutor"5), and he was confirmed in this dignity by the letters patent of the Caliph (p. 80). In 1128 A.C., on the invitation of the people of Aleppo, who had suffered terribly from the depredations of the Crusaders6, he took possession of their city. Hamah followed the example of Aleppo (p. 81). The following year Zangi routed the Crusaders under the walls of al-Asarib, and captured the castle after a stout resistance. A short truce between Joscelin, the Count of Edessa, "the greatest demon of them all"7, enabled Zangi to take part in the inevitable civil was which broke out on the death of Sultan Mahmud (p. 85). Atabek Zangi did not long concern himself with the troubles in the East. His great work lay in Syria. The Crusaders were again in ferment; they had received large reinforcements from Europe, and had been joined by a Greek contingent under the personal command of the Emperor John Comnenus. They captured Buzaa, put the sword all the male inhabitants, and carried into captivity the women and children. They they marched upon Shaizar (Casarea), a day's journey from Hamah. The castle of Shaizar, the birthplace of Usamah8, was almost impregnable (Philip 2000). Usamah's works offer a mesmerizing counterpoint to Christian stories of their own conduct and the responses of their opponents. Actually, Usamah's amity with a number of the Franks set him aside to recover from revengeful insult, and his expressions on the inquisitive thoughts and behavior of the Franks remain a precious resource. Mystifying are the workings of the Maker, the Creator of everything! When one comes to relate cases about the Franks, he cannot but praised God

Monday, September 23, 2019

Economic Effects of Minimum Wage Fixation Essay

Economic Effects of Minimum Wage Fixation - Essay Example On the other hand, the efficiency wage model of labor observes that increasing the wages for the workers will motivate them to work even harder, while increasing their fear of losing their jobs which are well paying (Ehrenberg and Smith, 94). This boosts the morale of the workers and make them highly motivated while undertaking their duties, an aspect that increases their productivity, and by extension, the productivity of the firm and the whole industry. This way, more employment is created, since improved productivity comes with increased opportunities (Ehrenberg and Smith, 378). Thus, according to the efficiency wage model, fixing the minimum wage, to a level higher than the competitive wage level, will promote productivity and discourage labor turnover, thus increase employment. Therefore, assuming the employment will continue rising as it has happened since June 2009, the empirical researchers need to face the following issues, to distinguish the correlation between minimum wage and employment rates, from the causal effect of minimum wage on employment. First, the empirical researchers should understand the issue of market operations, whereby different types of markets will give different results, when it comes to the relationship between minimum wage and employment. For example, an open competitive market will give different results, compared to a monopsony market, when it comes to the correlation between minimum wage and employment (Ehrenberg and Smith, 112). Secondly, the researchers need to understand the nature of the movement of the wages and the maximum level attainable in minimum wage fixation, before the correlation between the minimum wage and the employment changes from...This essay critically review the impacts of the introduction of the theoretic concept of minimum wage fixation into the real economy. This concept has had double impacts on employment and the economy at large. While the main idea behind fixing minimum wage that workers should b e paid is to make the lives of the workers better, through affording them a substantial income, it may affect the same workers, especially those with low skills negatively According to the standard competitive model of labor, fixing a minimum wage has the impact of increasing unemployment, through he creation of involuntary unemployment, where individuals can continuously apply concerted efforts o seek for a job but find none The case is different according to the Monopsony model of labor, which holds that the fixation of minimum wages has the effect of increasing employment, most especially when the wage is being increased from levels lower than the competitive wage, to reach the competitive wage levels On the other hand, the efficiency wage model of labor observes that increasing the wages for the workers will motivate them to work even harder, while increasing their fear of losing their jobs which are well paying The minimum wage can only go high, up to the competitive wage level, after which it will start having negative impacts. An increase in wage level from levels lower than the competitive levels has the impact of boosting the morale of the workers and increasing their levels of motivation, thus increasing their productivity, and consequently that of the firms

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Diversity in American culture Essay Example for Free

Diversity in American culture Essay The American culture is one of the outstanding cultures in nature compared with other cultures of the world. The culture of the American people can be regarded as being diversified in nature. (Bernstein N, 2001). The diversity of the American culture is attributed by the fact that America is composed of many ethnic groups with different global origin. The diversity has been found to occur in the dressing habits, eating habits, marriages habits and religion in nature. America has a unique history in nature since it was a founded world which is currently composed of the African –American, White-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, and the Indian –Americans. The diversity of the American culture has a lot of controversies which has come into a lot of criticism by the public in general. This paper will try to evaluate the religious diversity among the American people at the same it will try to bring out the driving forces behind this religion diversity. Consequently it will analyze the effects of the religious diversity to the American people. The religious diversity in America has been contributed by the immigration laws which encourage the religious freedom which has created the religious tolerance of the American people. According to Becvar, D. S (1997) â€Å"perhaps the most extreme case of religious pluralism in the world. † . Moreover the American constitution has consequently protected the religious rights of its members. The first amendment of The USA has consequently promoted the right of free worship without any interruptions. Thus the religious diversity has been promoted by the democratic government of the United States of America which has tried to encourage the immigration and at the same time guarating the religious freedom of its citizens. The American religious culture is made of many religious sects. The religious groups which are presently found in America includes the Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Budhism other minority religions (Bullis K, 1996). The religious diversity in the United States of America has proved to be so important to the society in nature, for instance there are a lot of intermarriages between the religious groups. By promoting the intermarriages, harmony is created in the world. The America of today has undergone some radical changes which have created a new America with new religious landscape. Nowdays the number of the immigrants has increased in to a great existent than before. The most growing group which has migrated in larger number is the Hispanics and the Asian groups. Most of the American people have not noticed the radical changes which the religious sector is undergoing in the recent times. We need to focus on such changes and realize that the religious field is currently under metamorphosis. Although the United states of America was being regarded as being a Christian nation, it has become to light that the Muslims have started to increase in their numbers, moreover the Buddhist religion has taken roots in the American land for example the Los Angeles city is a Buddhist city which is recognized as the most concentrated Buddhist city having the immigrants from India,China,Korea and sri lanka. At the same time the immigrants from the Latin America such as from Mexico, Brazil and Spain to the United States of America cities has promoted the growth of the Christianity of the Catholic and the protestant community. According to history the American land has been composed of many religions. The United States of America is undergoing a change in the religious practices. Most of the adults are nowadays have started to change their religious believes from the Christianity since the start of the First World War. However most of the American adults have started to identify themselves with some specific religion. But it has been established that the United States of America is currently losing its protestant members due to the fact that most of the Protestants were executed during the Second World War. The gender ratio has consequently affected the religious groups. It is estimated that 38% -39% of the religious believers are women. moreovcer most of the Muslims are men since the Muslim society allows only men to worship in the mosques, thus the religious practices has been found to affect the number of the believers. The religious believers in the United States of America have been found to affiliate themselves with the political parties. For example the Christian believers affiliate themselves to the Democrat, Republican and the Independents respectively. 56% of those who are the Assemblies of God have preferred to affiliate themselves with the Republican party while 56% of the Jews have preferred the Democratic party. (Burke T,2005). The religious diversity in the United States of America has profound effects on the way people are living. The religion has consequently affected the dressing codes of the individuals, the eating habits of the individuals and the social associations of the involved candidates. On the first case religion has been found to influence the dressing codes of people, for example the Muslim women wears long clothes which are made so that they can not have the direct contact with their male counterparts as it’s believed that it’s a taboo to for the Muslim women to have direct contact with men. At the same time the Hindu men wears what they refer as â€Å"dhoti†. The Christians women on the other hand have a tendency of wearing the trousers and sometimes skirts. Thus it can be concluded that the dressing codes in the United States of America has been influenced by the religion individuals have affiliated themselves to. The religious diversity in the United States of America has influenced the eating habits of the people of the United States of America. Many of the African-Americans are mainly Protestants and hence they have no strict eating habits (Canda. K, 1998). But other Christian members who belong to some sects such as the seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah witness have a lot of the eating restricness. At the same time some Muslim communities are prohibited from eating some foods such as the pork. Consequently the Hindus are prohibited from taking beef which they believe that it is a sacred animal in their religion. In conclusion it can be determined that religion is continuing to play one of the major roles in most people. The United States of America is secular increasingly, youve got African groups who bring another dimension of diversity. in nature and this phenomenon has spread in many states. Baer, H. A (1984) quoted that† In Southern California, weve got virtually everyone, Roof said. If you want an indicator of how much diversity there is in Southern California, there are approximately 100 different ethnic Buddhist groups here. With Latinos, its similar. With Islam, you get scores of nationalities†. The diversity of the religious believes among the Americans will continue to affect the daily activities of the Americans. References Baer, H. A. (1984). The Black spiritual movement: A religious response to racism. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press. Becvar, D. S. (1997). Soul healing: A spiritual orientation in counseling and therapy. New York: Basic Books. Bernstein, N. (2001). The lost children of Wilder: The epic struggle to change foster care. New York: Vintage Books. Bullis, R. K. (1996). Spirituality in social work practice. Washington, DC: Taylor Francis. Burke, M. T. (2005). Religious and spiritual issues in counseling: Applications across diverse populations. New York: Brunner-Rout ledge. Canada, E. R. (Ed. ) (1998). Spirituality in social work: New directions. New York: Haworth Pastoral Press.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Food, Culture and Spirituality

Food, Culture and Spirituality Food, culture, spirituality Every religion gives an interpretation of the symbolic aspect of food, and the status of food, and readings dictated by the Divine indicate to the human being his behaviour towards the earthly food. Food is an integral part of our history, and of our fate. Theology, religious discourse that interprets what the divine indicates in His language and liturgical texts are there, being the expression of the divine in the language of the People. Each of us has a unique way of behaving towards food, disciple or not of a particular religion (cultural reference system consolidating our relationship with the forces of transcendence). Man, since its advent on earth, practically selected food that has been helpful for survival. He has also been slow to adapt to certain foods and to domesticate what was natural. Later, depending on culture and / or tradition, man has legislated on the categories, on helpful food, bad food, pleasant food By establishing strict coding rules on how to eat, cook, etcMan has forced many generations to internalize a certain taste and to preset certain eating habits. Thus, from one continent to another, whereas today it is possible to find the same food everywhere, we find that there are different ways to eat, cook and prepare these foods. In the collective unconscious exists here and there a conditioning and learning specific to each culture, our religions that encourage us to sort between desirable: the known, and the undesirable: the unknown. The food remains the vector of our culture (our religion) because it is meaningful. If I refuse to eat a particular food, it is my inner conscience which tells me that there is a taboo (although sometimes I do not know the reason for this ban and I will try to build a logic argument (often taboo is religious). The concept of lawful and unlawful, sacred and profane is a duality which is similar to the universal notion of good and evil. The difference is then made between the food polluting the body and food benefiting the body. Eating a particular food is always a choice, an activity of the mind which classes, dictates, chooses based on cultural, economic and religious criteria. The food may also be in some traditions, a sacred food, that is to say, reserved for the gods, fit for consumption by the Gods, food offering or ceremony. The holidays are times sanctuaries where certain categories of foods are consumed, depending on History, Memory, Tradition; This is how our history may be likened to the history of our favourite foods. Men eat as society has taught them to feed themselves; this evidence appears to some as unfounded. We often love food that our mother taught us to consume. And our likes and dislikes, our food aversions are the result of our upbringing, our culture, our religion. Taste and food aversions nestle in us between the burden of heredity and constraints of socialization. All food system act as a control, it is a language of differentiation and distancing. Diet indicates a belonging, an ideal. We must not forget that in the Old Testament (Genesis Gen.l 0.29 to 30). It is recalled that the â€Å"Paradise is vegetarian and it was only after the flood that God allowed man to eat differently. It is written, Everything that lives and moves will serve you as food . Food, constitutive factor of cultural identity I am what I eat, what I eat transforms me; eating transmits certain characteristics to eaters. As a result, if I do not know what I eat, I do not know who I am â€Å"Claude Fischeler. Do we eat to live or do we live to eat? A question that often arises. In the face of this dilemma, the answer is both simple and complex. To live we must eat, we cannot do without food. Our diet and how to feed ourselves have evolved at the same pace as us. Our story is the story of our food. Our relationship with food is complicated, and each one of us rules it in his own way, as the hermit who needs just little food to survive, essentially fundamental to its survival; by cons if you abuse too much food as a bulimic, it becomes dangerous and can lead you to death. We must therefore follow a certain measure, knowing that food is both poison and medicine. Food is central to our mental and social universe, it accompanies us from our birth to our death for some civilizations beyond death by the offerings made à ¢Ã¢â€š ¬Ã¢â‚¬ ¹Ãƒ ¢Ã¢â€š ¬Ã¢â‚¬ ¹daily on the altar erected to the memory of ancestors . Learning about our tastes and sensations is done very early, from our first feeding; loved foods are those that have the taste and flavour of â€Å"flavoured† breast milk. Thus our brain receives and manufactures from the first moment of our life categories, adapting or rejecting by selecting certain tastes. We can say that the choice of our food is never so risky. This choice is always to specific categories that have to do with our children, our youth, our social and cultural environment, ultimately our history. Chance has little place in our food choices. Say that you love more this than that does not denote a single individual desire, this desire is conditioned by what we have already eaten or liked, even if we have forgotten â€Å"when and where? â€Å". Food, therefore, is a social cultural phenomenon induced positively or negatively in our mind, and determines our eating habits. Our uniqueness is also food. To this must be added the symbolic and mythological representations that illustrate our imaginary perception of food; the example of milk may well be illustrated by the milk of Mother Wolf of Romulus and Remus, as the preferred food to Paradise (with others). Milk creates an inseparable kinship and makes those who were fed together brothers and sisters in milk that is to say a third person who gives the breast to other children makes them his children, brothers and sisters of milk of her own children. This will prevent them later to marry from each other. We see that eating urges the individual. Eating is a social and cultural ritual that ensures continuity and diversity in family and social contacts. Eating together is sharing moments and fun with family and friends and participating in the unification and cohesion of groups, that is to say, sociability and maintaining social ties. Each society has its way of sharing food. Food is meant to be shared, in order not to destroy its essence for oneself and for others. In Hinduism, there is a warning â€Å"he who eats without knowing kills food, and if eaten, it kills. Be aware of what you eat, eating is not a trivial matter but a social act that determines the experience of community sharing. Brillat Savarin (Philosophy taste) gives us the key to this enigma by telling us: â€Å"Tell me what you eat and I will tell you who you are. Modern man eats everything but finally digests anything, because the culinary delight presupposes knowledge of your own kitchen or at least its basics. What distinguishes man from a ruminant for example is his awareness of what he eats and the pleasure he derives. Each civilization rebuilt a coherent landscape bases on food, wine is magnified because it is a close relative of the Communion in the Christian Religion, and it gladdens the heart of man. It keeps the image of consolation for the afflicted and haven for aggrieved persons. It is therefore linked to social marginalization. It is more individual than social, if not part of the whole meal that it must accompany or illustrate. Wine is consumed by feeling national the wine and cheese, typically French picture we praise it if we are French, as we praise the beer if we are German or Belgian, whiskey is consumed by mimicry or snobbery. As for coffee , it will make its entry into the French world in the seventeenth century , called philosophers ‘milk . It is considered a noble beverage that gives spirit and distinguished aristocratic drunkenness. Consumption will allow ladies to enter the intellectual circles. We see that the use of coffee has changed society for a social progress and some liberalization of morals. In Asian society, eating is to balance the bodys energies, thus ensuring a healthy eating is also a cultural act that has a metaphorical meaning and value. At an anniversary banquet, noodles consumption means long life to the person, the food appears here as a vector and an auspicious message. Put on the table rice stuffed dumplings to taste indicates a certain social and family cohesion. The Asian table must follow the rules of the three senses: sight, smell and taste; to this must be added the five basic tastes: sour, pungent, bitter, sweet and salty and to have a good meal it must rotate the crisp, fondant, sticky and dry. An Asian meal should be presented with all dishes together without succession in time. It is engulfed at a glance with its variety of colours and nuances of flavours. Thus the guest can choose what he likes, when he likes, and enjoy it at his convenience. Everything is there, everything is ordered in space and not in time. The meal is served to reinforce social relations, to exchange, to speak, as it is improper to eat in silence. Chinese formerly used knives. They were banished from the table for chopsticks, following a change of power. To mark this rupture, scholars forbade the use of the knife. Here we see the evolution of a table use: knives for chopsticks are happening, what is not a coincidence but reflects the social and political evolution of Chinese society. Eat all together from a central big dish, with your fingers but within a strict code , eating what comes ahead using three fingers to dip the bread in the sauce , do not lick your fingers , obeying a rhythm in time and focusing on food, these are other ways to behave vis- à  -vis food : they correspond to a certain Mediterranean cultural practice (especially the Maghreb ) . Here we eat in silence as the food is sacred. You must devote your attention and time. Today the food we impose has for criterion regularity, shelf life, caloric intake, leaving the old qualities such as flavour, taste, tradition, fun The man has striven for centuries to diversify his supply; He is reversing it today by making an increasingly homogeneous food. Therefore, food is disconnected from the social and cultural body which was its diversity, plurality, and frugality . Its not the food that makes the man, but the man who creates his diet. We must therefore sometimes relearn how to eat, to sit at the table to give meaning to our diet. Otherwise, we may do, without realizing it, food autism We will then only have right to virtual ideal food, safe , tasteless food. Then, the multi-functionality of a meal will appear to us as artificial, as collages acts, simultaneous but inconsistent, that is to say ridiculous features without any content. Our food is the vehicle of our symbols, it affects our lives and occupies our minds, it gives us sensations; it is essential to our lives and to our progress. Without food, man would be naked: just like he chooses his clothing, he chooses his diet, and this is what sets him apart and distinguishes him and is necessary for him to live and exist. Food: spiritual food? It is interesting to see how all the great sages or high initiates if we want to use a scholarly term gave a great importance to food. All religious people, whatever their faith, give a moment of reflection, prayer or meditation just before eating a meal and normally it takes place in silence. In some cases, the food becomes a spiritual food, because through food you can feed all the parts that make up the human being, of course, the physical part, but also the body parts that are called subtle. Returning to the theory and teaching of French philosopher and educator, of Bulgarian origin, Omraam Mikhael Aivanhov we find the meaning of food is very original and highly spiritual. It is through food that Aivanhov teaches us how we can increase our spirituality. Food becomes, through his teachings, an act of consciousness towards which we should all strive. Food certainly has the function of feeding us physically, but also to nourish all the other components of our being, all other bodies which compose us. This will be the purpose of the ethereal part of any food, feed our subtle body parts which are the seat of our psychic and spiritual functions. The first rule is to be aware of the first bite we take in our mouth: the beginning is extremely important, given that on it depends the rest of the meal. If we start out the meal peacefully, it will run fine until the end, but if we start when we are nervous or agitated, we will remain in this condition until the end. Harmony thus arises from the first bite. Food must then be chewed properly, that is to say long and slowly; because it is in the mouth that occurs the first digestion, even at the subtle level. According to Aivanhov it is in the mouth, through small glands located under the tongue, that are absorbed ethereal particles of food, those that can be defined as the subtle energy , not heat , and serve to feed the nervous system. The ether portion is a food -related colour, the life it contains: a world which is located in the field of air. Therefore, to eat well, the ethereal body must accompany each meal with a good breathing. You have to think to breathe deeply between a bite and the other to allow proper combustion. Supporting our etheric body means supporting our vitality, our memory, and our sensitivity. But awareness is not enough if we are going to feed the astral body, where our emotions and feelings reside: for this we must love the food we consume. Be in harmony with oneself is a fundamental condition for being able to stop and have a thought of peace, so that even this body, which is more subtle , can extract what it needs. For those who believe, it is enough to see the food as a manifestation of Divinity and focus on that thought to get the greatest benefit and enlightenment through the repetitive act of the meal. For Aivanhov, if we want to receive the finer parts of the food, we must be aware and especially predisposed to love, and our bodies will be open and ready to receive the best of the food. In fact, its like when we welcome a person with lots of love, he (she) will open to us and give us all; but if we receive him (her) with hostility, he (she) will close and we cannot get anything from this person. Just like a flower opens and transfers all its fragrance in the light and heat, the same way the food will behave with us, if we are qualified to position ourselves to it positively. Another key point in his theory states that it is possible to eat everything, but only as it should be eaten, and in reasonable quantities. Indulge and consume quantities above what we really need is harmful and promotes a loss of energy. Once you understand how to eat, it would be possible to feed in â€Å"homeopathic doses. The power supply has obviously a fundamental role, but mental and spiritual life is more important. That is why the positive and full of love thoughts are the basis for being able to enjoy fully foods that are ingested. Such thoughts are needed, even during a meal preparation; when we come into contact with food , we can provide it with positive energy through our thoughts . Aivanhov gives priority to foods that are able to develop spirituality. With the assumption that even infants smell, see colours, hears sounds, it becomes easy to understand how fruits and vegetables, which are steeped in sunlight, allow us to absorb it, through them, when we eat. By cons, meat, according to him, has a poor light and, above all, it has rapid time decay. Thats why it is not fit for human consumption. In addition, the animal feels death approaching when it arrives at the slaughterhouse, so its glands produce hormones that are poisonous to those who then eat its meat. Even solar energy contained in plants can feed us, but it is important that, in thought, we get it to reach all parts of our body. Silence is fundamental during the meal, to be able to concentrate, to be aware of the act that is accomplished. In this way, the meal becomes a privileged moment of meditation. Through this way of meditating, we are present when the act is accomplished, thanks to the love and consciousness; our body is nourished completely, even in its most subtle parts. The pranic food There are currently 20,000 people on our planet who would feed exclusively prana (chi, qi, ki) meaning that they would feed exclusively from the ambient energy, the light, at the expense of food and even water. Formerly, it was the case of the great mystics as Marthe Robin or the Tibetan lamas. Today, this phenomenon tends to spread and affect persons who are less religious†. To make sure of it, scientists observed a man who fasted for 70 years. For this purpose, he was filmed continuously for 15 days, 24 hours a day, continuously, to avoid deception. It was confirmed that he did not eat or drink during those fifteen days, and also he did not urinate or have a bowel movement, that is even more disturbing. Researchers have not yet figured out how this Indian could live 83 years while he pretended not to eat or drink for more than 70 years. You should know that today, individuals go towards new energies, raising their vibrational level to a greater spirituality, which gives them less attraction to the material elements. This no doubt helps people in their adaptation to the pranic nourishment. But it seems it is still too early for humanity to take this step. And for the moment, we must be very careful before getting to the pranic nourishment. We must be surrounded and knowledgeable about the subject. As some have tried and lost their health. An interesting view on the subject is the movie â€Å"light directed by Peter Arthur Straubinger. Food plays a central role in all religions, therefore some requirements and uses: Jewish kosher, Halal Muslim food, fasting among Christians. Each of the three monotheistic religions has its own norms or customs. But with modernity and secularization, are these still respected? When you believe, you do not eat anything, or anyhow. In most religions, there is a strong link between physical food and spiritual food. Besides, the precepts and prohibitions say something about Divinity, just like the presence of food in most ceremonies. Referencing Awad Fouatih – Pluridisciplinary Professor, Aubervilliers,France Pranic Food (French Edition)byHenri Monfort Living Sufism: Tariqa Qadiriya Boutchichiya, islam--soufisme