May. 4th, 2017

chickenfeet: (Default)
 I've been watching a BBC Scotland documentary about archeological work on Orkney.  The basic hypothesis is that the "stone circle culture" that came to dominate the British Isles around 3000 BCE originated on Orkney among a group of settlers from continental Europe and then spread south.  It's an intriguing theory and the evidence looks pretty good.

Reading Penrose's latest "Faith, Fashion and Fantasy in the New Physics of the Universe".  Typical Penrose.  Unlike some other popular physicists he refuses to skip over the mathematical basis of his argument.  I had hoped to never again encounter a gauge tensor but there you go.

Just got back from a convo with a chap working on a PhD on how audiences perceive shows.  It made me realise just how analytical and model based my own process as an audience member is.  It's curious how little research there is on the cognitive processes of audiences.

For the first time in a long time I've been trying to fit some new and different ideas into my politics.  I'm thinking about two related ideas (or at least I think they are related).  One, which I wrote about here a couple of days ago is the idea of "sovereignty" and how the 19th century view of it as indivisible and mapped isomorphically to "nations" is probably very unhelpful, especially when thinking about multi-polity initiatives like the EU.  The other is land ownership and the idea again that "ownership" is a single thing vested in an "owner".  First Nations had/have a very different idea of the relationship between people and land and maybe we need to think some about that.  European settlement in the Americas can't be undone but perhaps new ways of thinking about the land and the people on it can help with the process of Truth and Reconciliation (and, yes, the unthinkable, Restitution).

September 2017

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