Tuesday, January 28, 2020
Ukraine Facts Essay Ukraine is located in southeastern Europe, occupying the northern shore of the Black Sea. Its former ruler, Russia, borders it to the east and northeast, with Belarus to the north and Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Rumania, and Moldova to the west. EuropeÃ¢â¬â¢s second-largest nation (behind Russia), it occupies 603,700 square miles in area, 56% percent of which includes rich arable land, found in the nationÃ¢â¬â¢s plains (steppes) and plateaus; only the far western and Crimean regions are relatively mountainous and the nationÃ¢â¬â¢s highest point, Hora Hoverla, is 6762 feet above sea level (The World Factbook). The Dnieper River, UkraineÃ¢â¬â¢s most important waterway, bisects the country and is the location of the capital, Kiev. Its climate and precipitation vary greatly, with the Crimea enjoying a Mediterranean climate and cool winters. The remainder of the country is temperate, with generally warm summers and winters varying from moderately to extremely cold. History Though modern Ukrainian independence arrived in 1991, after the Soviet Union dissolved, it was a strong nation in the tenth and eleventh centuries, before internal divisions and foreign invasions placed it under Polish and Lithuanian rule for several centuries. Between the mid-seventeenth and late eighteenth centuries, Ukrainian Cossacks (the nomadic peoples known for their horsemanship and fighting skill) helped win the nation its independence. However, Ukraine fell under Russian rule in the late eighteenth century and remained Russian-controlled, except for a brief period between 1917 and 1920. During RussiaÃ¢â¬â¢s rule, Ukraine was afflicted by famines (particularly in 1921-22 and 1932-33) which killed over eight million citizens, and it suffered considerably during World War II, losing an additional eight million during the Nazi invasion and subsequent Soviet offensive (The World Factbook). Though Ukraine achieved independence again in 1991, it remained a dictatorship under some degree of Russian control, afflicted by corruption that stymied efforts at political and economic reform. The 2004 election of reformer Viktor Yushchenko as president (despite the oppositionÃ¢â¬â¢s efforts to rig the election and poison the pro-democracy candidate) marks a potential turning point in Ukrainian history Culture Despite its long periods of foreign occupation, Ukraine has managed to retain its distinctive culture, particularly its language, which closely resembles Russian and uses the Cyrillic alphabet like most other Slavic languages. However, its ethnic minorities continue to use their own languages, though (mainly Russian, with small pockets of Poles, Rumanians, and Hungarians). Communist rule discouraged religion, but since 1991 UkraineÃ¢â¬â¢s religious practices revived, with slightly less than half of the population adhering to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. Slightly more than one-third of Ukrainians still practice no religion or belong to no church, while there also rather small minorities of Protestants, Catholics, and Jews (The World Factbook). After attaining independence, Ukraine was slow to adopt democracy, though calls for reform and YushchenkoÃ¢â¬â¢s election signal the nationÃ¢â¬â¢s desire to orient itself toward Western Europe and adopt both democracy and a free-market economy. Its economy, initially slow to prosper, has opened itself to foreign business and improved within the last few years. REFERENCES Anonymous. (1996). Welcome to Ukraine. Retrieved 30 January 2006 from http://www. ukraine. org/. (2006). CIA Ã¢â¬â The World Factbook Ã¢â¬â Ukraine. Retrieved 30 January 2006 from http://www. cia. gov/cia/publications/factbook/print/up. htm
Monday, January 20, 2020
Emily Grierson Living in the Past in William Faulkner's A Rose for Emily Ã Ã In "A Rose for Emily," by William Faulkner, Emily Grierson seems to be living with her father in what people referred to as the old South.Ã However, most of the story takes place after the Civil War, but Miss Emily is clearly living in the past.Ã As critic Frederick Thum pointed out, "Many people are able to survive in the present, but give little or no thought to the future, and these people usually live in the past.Ã Such a mind is the mind of Miss Emily Grierson..."(1).Ã Miss Emily's comprehension of death, her relationship with the townspeople, and her reaction toward her taxes are clear examples that she is living in the past. Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã At the beginning of the story, the narrator tells the reader that "our whole town went to her funeral"(336).Ã The narrator goes on and informs the reader that,Ã "She was a 'fallen monument...[sig] a tradition, a duty and a care: a sort of hereditary obligation upon this town'"(Pierce 850).Ã "Miss Emily was referred to as a 'fallen monument' because she was a 'monument' of Southern gentility, and ideal of past values but fallen because she had shown herself susceptible to death (and decay" (Rodriguez 1).Ã By the time of Emily's death most of the people in her town were younger than she and had never been able to include her in their lives or community activities.Ã She has stood mainly as a example of an older ideal of Southern womanhood, even though she had grown fat and pale in her later years.Ã The older and younger generations of townspeople treated Miss Emily differently.Ã "'The older generation, under the mayoralty of Colonel Sartois, has relieved Miss Emily of her taxes and has sent its children to take... ...licts between them.Ã Her refusal or inability to move out of this world is reflected in her comprehension of death, her relationship with the townspeople, and her reaction toward her taxes. Works Cited and Consulted Faulkner, William.Ã "A Rose For Emily" Literature and the Writing ProcessÃ Eds. Elizabeth McMahan, Susan X Day, and Robert Funk. 4th Ed.Ã Upper Saddle River:Ã Prentince Hall, 1996. Pierce, Constance, "William Faulkner." Critical Survey of Short Fiction Ed. Frank N. MaGill. 7 vols.Ã Pasadena, California:Ã Salem Press, 1993: 848-857. Rodriquez,Celia. "An Analysis of 'A Rose for Emily.'" 9 Sept. 1996. 17 Mar. 1998 http://www.cwrl.utexas.edu/daniel/amlit/reader/South?radriquezerose.html Them, Frederick.Ã "A Rose for Emily:Ã Confusion of Past and Present." 2 Oct. 1995. 17 Mar.1998 http://sru.ocs.drexel.edu.undergrad/st93mey7/fred/rose.html
Sunday, January 12, 2020
Some pointers on the final reflection paper Your final paper, the reflection paper, is a kind of a follow-up paper to the short statement that you handed in at the beginning of the course. To that extent, you can write the paper holding on to the same types of questions that suggested for that first short statement. To repeat, these questions were the following: 1 . What do you think of when you think of ethics or morality? 2. Can you define the concept of ethics? 3. Does being ethical mean being happy? 4.What does being moral consist of according to you? Doing the right thing? Living a fulfilling life? 5. Can one Ã¢â¬Ëlearn' to be ethical? Or, what are the sources of ethics? 6. Can you give an example of an ethical person / a moral action? And if yes, why do you consider this person/action to be a Ã¢â¬Ëgood' one? However, I am not asking you at this point to simply answer these questions. What I am most interested in is a reflection on your part on what you thought of ethics/mor ality at the beginning of our class and how you think of it now.Do you have new answer to the above questions? Or, have new questions come to mind? Are the doubts you had before answered? Or are there nagging questions left? (Why morality? What can I take from the theories we studied? ). The paper thus does not have to be your final reflection on all things moral. It has to be a reflection on where you stand today with regards to where you stood at the start of class. Concretely, in terms of how the paper will be judged. A) You need to provide an informed account of your position concerning morality.Informed' means that you discuss relevant bits and pieces of the main theories and arguments we have discussed throughout our class- meetings and how they got you thinking about morality as well as how they changed your mind or left you with nagging questions. B) You need to provide well-argued claims. In other words, if you make a claim or posit a question want you to tell Ã¢â¬Ëthe re ader' why your claim or question is interesting and important Are you convinced that there is no such thing as moralityÃ¢â¬ ¦? Well, tell me why.And let me know why that is a convincing and orient position to take! This should help you on your way. + The paper will have to be 3-4 pages long (1 h line-spacing, font 12). + For advice on how to write, turn once again to the file on philosophical writing I uploaded under Course Materials. + The paper counts for 20% to your final grade. Take the assignment seriously and challenge yourself to think for a moment about what you actually learned from those last few months spent reading and discussing ethics. Good luck and I am looking forward to read your reflections!
Saturday, January 4, 2020
Is lying ever morally permissible? While lying can be seen as a threat to civil society, there seem to be several instances in which lying seems the most intuitively moral option. Besides, if a sufficiently broad definition of lying is adopted, it seems utterly impossible to escape lies, either because of instances of self-deception or because of the social construction of our persona. LetÃ¢â¬â¢s look more closely into those matters. What lying is, first of all, is controversial. Recent discussion of the topic has identified four standard conditions for lying, but none of them seems to actually work. Keeping in mind the difficulties in providing an exact definition of lying, letÃ¢â¬â¢s start facing the foremost moral question regarding it: Should lying always be despised? A Threat to Civil Society? Lying has been seen as a threat to civil society by authors such as Kant. A society that tolerates lies Ã¢â¬â the argument goes Ã¢â¬â is a society in which trust is undermined and, with it, the sense of collectivity. In the United States, where lying is regarded as a major ethical and legal fault, the trust in government may well be greater than in Italy, where lying is far more tolerated. Machiavelli, among others, used to reflect on the importance of trust centuries ago. Yet, he also concluded that deceiving is, in some cases, the best option. How can that be? White Lies A first, less controversial sort of cases in which lying is tolerated includes so-called white lies. In some circumstances, it seems better to tell a small lie than having someone worrying unnecessarily, or becoming sad, or losing momentum. While actions of this sort seem hard to endorse from the standpoint of Kantian ethics, they provide one of the most clear-cut arguments in favor of Consequentialism. Lying for a Good Cause Famed objections to the Kantian absolute moral ban of lying, however, come also from the consideration of more dramatic scenarios. Here is one type of scenario. If by telling a lie to some Nazi soldiers during World War II, you could have saved someoneÃ¢â¬â¢s life, without any other additional harm being inflicted, it seems that you ought to have lied. Or, consider the situation in which someone outraged, out of control, asks you where she can find an acquaintance of yours so that she can kill that acquaintance; you know where the acquaintance is and lying will help your friend calm down: should you tell the truth? Once you start thinking about it, there are plenty of circumstances where lying seems to be morally excusable. And, indeed, it is typically morally excused. Now, of course, there is a problem with this: who is to say whether the scenario excuses you from lying? Self-Deception There are plenty of circumstances in which humans seem to convince themselves of being excused from taking a certain course of action when, to the eyes of their peers, they actually are not. A good part of those scenarios may involve that phenomenon called self-deception. Lance Armstrong may have just provided one of the starkest cases of self-deception we can offer. Yet, who is to say that you are self-deceiving yourself? By wanting to judge the morality of lying, we may have led ourselves into one of the most difficult skeptical lands to traverse. Society as a Lie Not only lying may be seen as the outcome of self-deception, perhaps an involuntary outcome. Once we broaden our definition for what a lie may be, we come to see that lies are deep-seated in our society. Clothing, makeup, plastic surgeries, ceremonials: plenty of aspects of our culture are ways of masking how certain things would appear. Carnival is perhaps the festivity that best deals with this fundamental aspect of human existence. Before you condemn all lying, hence, think again.Ã¢â¬â¹ Source The Entry on the Definition of Lying and Deception at the Stanford Encyclopedia of PhilosophyÃ¢â¬â¹.