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September 17[edit]

religions based on values and practices of Islam[edit]

Sikhism was based on the practices of Islam and Hinduism and Yazidism was based on the practice of Zoroastrianism, Islam and Christianity. What other religions are based on Islam? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:26, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

The Bahá'í Faith comes to mind as one example - though whether one considers a religion as 'based on' another rather than as a 'corruption of' another is clearly going to be a matter of dispute. AndyTheGrump (talk) 01:44, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
This is probably one of the "continuum of differences" rather than either/or conditions. Bahá'í Faith certainly has many historical connections to Islam. Another group, the Alawites, consider themselves to be Muslim, but there are other groups of Islam that see them as a separate faith entirely. As Andy notes, this is often a matter of perspective. --Jayron32 02:06, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
And of course, many in the Shia and Sunni sects consider the other not to be true Muslims. Sufis might be also be suspect. StuRat (talk) 02:51, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Consider also the Druze of Lebanon and Israel. Despite their apparent origins in Shi'ite Islam, they are quite different. Israeli Druze have served with distinction in the Israeli Defense Forces since the earliest days of that country. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 05:50, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

The most obvious case of a religion which attempts to "extend" Islam but still retain a strong connection with Islam is Ahmadiyya... -- AnonMoos (talk) 13:29, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Everything is based on Islam, even Yazidism which predates it is based on it. Science, medicine and political philosophies by everyone from Plato to Hobbes to Stuart Mill are based on and informed by Islam. Every good deed any person does is informed by Islam and Islamic values. Arabic is the most pure, uncorrupted language which all other languages descend from. Asmrulz (talk) 23:54, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

  • [citation needed] on Plato; he lived over millennium before Islam existed... As far as Arabic as "pure", that's entirely an unfalsifiable statement. But Plato lived in the 4th century BCE, while Islam was founded in the 7th century CE. It is difficult to be influenced by something that would not exist for 1000 years after you were born. --Jayron32 00:02, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
    • Asmrulz used the word "pure" in the sense which is both falsifiable and falsified, as far as I see. He probably used the term "descend" from the field of notions of the modern theory on language evolution (a language B is called to be descent from the language A if the generations of speakers of the language A turned to speak the language B in a gradual process of language evolution). Patterns in existing languages suggest, as far as I know, that the vast majority of contemporary languages did not descend from Arabic in this sense. ;) "Based on" is really a very vague concept, but the question may have been about basing on Muslim practices and not about basing on Islam itself… - (talk) 12:18, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Asmrulz seems to be speaking from an Islamic point of view. A Muslim believes that Islam is the one true faith that was shown to Adam (Adam in Islam) and other prophets known to Jews and Christians. They believe that Muhammad did not found Islam but that he restored the faith that had been corrupted over the years by the Jews and Christians. So from that viewpoint the idea that Islam influenced Plato and Yazidism is correct. CBWeather, Talk, Seal meat for supper? 10:33, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
As in Genesis 2:37 when Adam and Eve kneel and pray toward where Mecca isn't yet. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 08:57, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I was having a bit of fun. See the original edit summary (and also Poe's law.) It's just that the phrase "based on" irked me. To my excuse I didn't say anything that which someone somewhere didn't think in earnest (a large number of people, too) Asmrulz (talk) 08:12, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

Is there any reason to keep cigarettes legal?[edit]

Now that vaporizer pens are less expensive, profoundly less dangerous, and apparently satisfy nicotine addicts completely (?) is there any compelling government interest in allowing the continued sale of cigarettes? Which governments are most dependent on tobacco taxes? Do tobacco farmers still sell to vaporizer cartridge manufacturers? EllenCT (talk) 09:12, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

What country do you live in, where that which is not mandatory is forbidden? In the US, We have a constitution reserving to the states and citizens all powers not explcitly granted to the Federal government. μηδείς (talk) 19:08, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
It's by no means clear that "vaping" is free from all long-term negative consequences... AnonMoos (talk) 13:32, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
E-cigs are neither as tasty nor as satisfying as proper fags. DuncanHill (talk) 13:34, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Guy to his friend at a gay bar: I'm just going outside for a fag. After that, I'll probably feel like a cigarette.  :) -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 23:33, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Utterly wrong question, just aggressively backwards. Morally speaking, you need a justification to ban something, not a justification to allow it. --Trovatore (talk) 13:50, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Morally speaking, this is not clear at all; both options may be soundly claimed wrong at the same time. Perhaps you would have to choose another word instead of "morally". - (talk) 11:28, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Here in the US, there is a growing trend that "everything bad must be made illegal, and everything good must be mandatory". And, of course, it is the cultural elite that gets to decide what is good or bad for the ignorant proletariat masses, with the Federal government as the enforcement arm. Our Founding Fathers would roll over in their graves, if only that were allowed. (Okay, okay... that's enough of that -- sorry 'bout the rant)   —E: (talk) 15:35, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
In the USA one can blame that, to some extent, on the puritanism which predated the Founding Fathers, and which seems to have survived their efforts and gone on to permeate much of the culture. DuncanHill (talk) 15:42, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Well, now, the Puritans are widely misunderstood. In particular, while they had fairly strict rules about sexual behavior, they definitely did not have any squeamishness about the subject in general. The idea that sex is somehow "not very nice" is more a Victorian attitude than a Puritan one.
From the Puritans derives the Congregational Church, and from it the Transcendentalist movement, which included some of the greatest American exponents of liberty, like Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. --Trovatore (talk) 16:05, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
The attitude of knowing what is best for people, and then using the law to impose it upon people is the aspect of puritanism to which I was referring. Banning mince pies and hanging Quakers, that sort of thing. DuncanHill (talk) 16:13, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Certainly not defending that, but it seems to me more of a continuation of the English wars of religion than a Puritan innovation. --Trovatore (talk) 17:01, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Well, I'll agree that the Roman Catholics were just as keen on killing people for having the wrong religion as the Puritans were. DuncanHill (talk) 18:26, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
I actually think the US is headed into a more Libertarian period, with marijuana, gay mariage, etc., now being legalized.
Returning to banning cigs, this is somewhat similar to the promise of filtered cigs, which can provide the nicotine desired, but with minimal harmful tar. Unfortunately, they were of limited value, since smokers associate that tar ("flavor") with the nicotine high, and something seems to be missing without it.
I hope cigs are some day made illegal (or perhaps only allowed in places where there is no possibility any nonsmoker will be subjected to the smoke), on the grounds that secondhand smoke is harmful to others. (I agree with the Libertarian ideal of letting people do whatever they want, but only if it doesn't harm others.) It would be nice to be able to walk through a parking lot or into or out of a building without choking on a cloud of smoke. These e-cigs also need to be studied and regulated, to ensure that they are safe. StuRat (talk) 16:32, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Prohibition doesn't work. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 17:41, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
I believe prohibition can work, but only where there is a good substitute for the banned item. For example, methyl alcohol is banned from alcoholic beverages, because it is poisonous, and ethyl alcohol is a good substitute for it. Now, whether e-cigs are an acceptable sub for real cigs is still an open question. StuRat (talk) 15:02, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Maybe we should ban cars except where there is no possibility that no non-driver will be subjected to the fumes (or the being hit, or the some idiot driving into the side of their house)? We could also study and regulate absolutely everything, to ensure that it is "safe" - whatever "safe" means, water is poisonous in the right quantities, so are apple pips. And, as BB points out, prohibition don't work - didn't work with alcohol in the States, don't work anywhere with recreational pharmaceuticals. DuncanHill (talk) 18:25, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Motor vehicles certainly are highly regulated, as is the fuel for them, to minimize deaths caused by them. Ultimately we may switch to electric vehicles, which solves the fume problem, at least. Banning all motor vehicles obviously would destroy the economy, while switching to e-cigs would not, especially if the same tobacco companies provide the nicotine for them. And water is a poor example since you drinking lots of water won't poison me. Here we return to the Libertarian ideal that you can do whatever you want, so long as it doesn't harm others. StuRat (talk) 15:08, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Smoking is good for the economy - keeps money circulating, raises tax revenues, and reduces pension liabilities. Also reduces the amount of end-of-life care that has to be paid for, as smokers not only die sooner than non-smokers, but also die more quickly, far less likely to have a long, lingering, expensive death from e.g. dementia. And it tastes good, and encourages a reflective state of mind. DuncanHill (talk) 15:21, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
I believe the consensus from the tobacco company lawsuits and settlements was that it's a huge net negative on the economy, reducing productivity, years worked, etc. And lung cancer, emphysema, etc., is not normally a quick and inexpensive death. Also, as I've already said, if the cigs are replaced with e-cigs, and the same tobacco companies provide the nicotine for those, then there's no economic negative there, either. StuRat (talk) 15:33, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
You'd get quite a different answer from internal studies that tax-collecting bodies have done (and been prevented from publishing). Anyway, as has been said, e-cigs just don't cut it. DuncanHill (talk) 15:39, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
It's entirely possible that cigs are a net negative to the economy and yet a net positive to tax revenues, if they are taxed at a higher rate. The solution, of course, is to switch those taxes to other "sins". Legalizing, taxing and regulating marijuana and prostitution are 2 ideas (although cannabis should be eaten, not smoked, IMHO, to prevent the same nasty secondhand smoke problem). StuRat (talk) 12:48, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
There have been plans to introduce a total ban of smoking of any kind whatsoever in Finland by 2040. When I told my father about this, he remarked "I'll probably be dead by then". JIP | Talk 18:38, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Of smoking? —Tamfang (talk) 23:29, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Making cigarettes illegal would not stop the demand for them... with legal distribution and sale ended, that demand would be met by organized crime syndicates (see our article on Prohibition in the United States for a comparable history of what happened in a similar situation). Blueboar (talk) 11:57, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

As StuRat suggests, we have no organized crime syndicates selling methanol. However, I am not opposed to taxing burned tobacco products so much that poor addicts must resort to trying vape pens.
And to StuRat and everyone else, thank you for your thoughtful words, but I believe that a body of evidence about the number of tobacco addicts who find vaporizers an acceptable substitute is almost necessarily extant by now:
"When compared to the harmful effects of smoking, these studies suggest that vaping could be used as a possible 'harm reduction' tool. There is evidence supporting e-cigarettes as an aide for smoking cessation, at least as successful as currently available FDA-approved NRTs. Less evidence exists to suggest that e-cigarettes are effective in recovery from nicotine dependence." PMC 3859972 (Review.) EllenCT (talk) 16:37, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

Questions related to Australia immigration[edit]

What is the cheapest city in Australia for a student emigrating from a developing country? Where do immigrants stay in Australia? What is the criteria for permanenet residency? How difficut is it for someone to get PR who is a migrant fitness trainer? --EditorMakingEdits (talk) 09:51, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Fitness trainer is not on the list of skilled occupations for which points are awarded. To learn more about Australia's immigration policy and visa options, visit Australia's immigration website. As for the cheapest cities for students, this website answers your questions. If you have further questions regarding immigration, I would suggest this forum, where people are likely to be more knowledgeable than on this general reference desk. Marco polo (talk) 15:15, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Christian fundamentalism/modern opposition to the teaching of evolution outside the United States[edit]

How come the Christian fundamentalism movement has not gained as much traction in the rest of the world as it has in the United States particularly in Canada or Europe? I'm aware that this is partly because the United States is generally more socially conservative than other (predominantly Christian) countries, but it seems that this is because of the existence of fundamentalist groups, and it's not the case that there was a prevailing sense of conservatism that lead to the foundation of such groups. As an example, I'll give the controversy of the teaching of evolution. In the United States, there remain movements and even politicians who support removing the teaching of evolution in public schools, and replacing them with ideas such as creation science and intelligent design. I am not aware of such contemporary movements of such scale in any other country (although our article on Christian fundamentalism suggest that Canada used to have a large fundamentalist movement, though they failed to gain the scale of their American counterparts). I'm aware that there do exist fundamentalist movements in other countries, and even movements that promote ideas like intelligent design, but these movements are minuscule and don't have the influence of similar groups in the US (I live in a Catholic country for example, where many people can be seen as socially conservative (anti-abortion, anti-divorce, etc.), but never once did I see a science teacher or a movement oppose the teaching of evolution; Brazil and South Korea also have large Evangelical populations, but there doesn't seem to be any large fundamentalist movements there, nor are there controversies with teaching evolution). So why did Christian fundamentalism become such a force in the United States, and why haven't similar movements gained as much prominence in other countries, even those with large Christian (particularly Evangelical) populations? Narutolovehinata5 tccsdnew 10:09, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Some countries may have nominally large Christian populations, but on closer analysis, vast swathes of the population are actually largely indifferent about religion. I live in England, which is very much like this. The United Kingdom Census 2011 revealed that [59% of people in the UK self-identified as Christian]. This was a decline from 72% a decade earlier, in the previous census. Just [15% of the population] are churchgoers. --Dweller (talk) 12:31, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
I think a more interesting question is why most Christians have managed to accommodate Darwin, while others, particularly in the US, insist on a seemingly more literal interpretation of the Bible (I say seemingly, because they also pick and chose, and find reasons (or excuses) not to e.g. stone adulterers, or why it's ok to travel on Saturdays, or to eat pork). I have no good answer for that. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:10, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
The standard long-term answer is that the ritual commandments of the Old Testament have been abolished for Christians but not the moral commandments. And the punishment of stoning has been invalidated by the Pericope Adulterae. And some of them don't in fact travel on Sundays. You act like they haven't thought about even the obvious questions, but actually they've given quite a bit of thought to them (and to others that you probably don't even know about). AnonMoos (talk) 13:24, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Sorry if I was unclear. I understand enough of the standard constructions that generate the currently expected traditional world view out of the Bible to be able to generalise. The question I had no good answer for is what makes evolution such a sticking point. I don't see why it's harder to explain that Genesis is metaphorical and not to be read as literal history, than to accept that the new testament abolishes some of the old testament laws (maybe only for non-jew Christians, maybe for all of us...), or that Pauls convenient dreams allow us to eat whatever is convenient.Pope Benedict XVI has no problem with evolution - why does Jimmy Swaggart have one? Marco Polo below provides some useful input there.--Stephan Schulz (talk) 16:32, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Some people think that the evolutionary account of human origins is a plot to declare that humans are "just animals" and so destroy the foundations of morality... AnonMoos (talk) 05:46, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Do we have an article that explains which are moral and which are ritual? It's a fascinating topic. --Dweller (talk) 14:11, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Christian views on the Old Covenant, apparently... AnonMoos (talk) 15:25, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Anti-intellectualism is a strong cultural strain in American Evangelicalism, as discussed in Hofstadter's Anti-intellectualism in American Life. While American Evangelicals couch their objection to concepts such as evolution in religious terms, it probably makes more sense to see this opposition in terms of deep-seated anti-intellectualism. This has deep roots in North America, going back to the First Great Awakening, one of whose main themes was the idea that authority did not derive from education or scholarship but from divine inspiration and the truth of an individual's interpretation of scripture. This attitude allowed colonial congregations to reject the authority of church leaders educated in England, or in the few elite colleges of the American colonies, in favor of local and less educated charismatic leaders (or to reject the idea of religious leadership altogether). This cultural feature remained strong in interior and (economically) peripheral parts of the United States, such as the South and rural Midwest, where people saw themselves as economic victims of eastern and urban elites. In response, many in these regions rejected the cultural authority of educated elites and asserted the primacy of scripture, whose truth was accessible even to people with limited education. Marco polo (talk) 15:04, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
I wouldn't be surprised if political lobbying and those willing to fund such in the United States had an impact also, see Intelligent design in politics. Nanonic (talk) 17:39, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
  • In fact, the vast majority of Christians in the US are perfectly fine with Darwin (and the rest of science). Those who believe in Creationism or Intelligent Design etc (and want it to be taught in school) are a tiny fringe. Unfortunately, they are a very loud and argumentative fringe who tend to be organized at the ballot box, so the media takes notice of them more often than it does the quieter majority (who thinks they are nuts). Blueboar (talk) 18:28, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Actually, according to this source, 42% of Americans believe in Creationism. According to the same source, 69% of those who attend church weekly believe in Creationism. According to this source, 83% of Americans consider themselves Christian. So, roughly half of Christian Americans believe in Creationism. I don't think it's possible to say that a "vast majority" of American Christians are perfectly fine with Darwin. Marco polo (talk) 18:55, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Interesting to note that our articles on Creationism, creation science, etc. actually say that the United States has a higher percentage of creationists compared to other developed nations (complete with sources!), and our article on Christian right explicitly mentions that the movement is mainly a United States-movement and that "there is nothing quite like it in Europe" (again, with a source), which similar movements in Canada, the Netherlands, and a few other countries existing, but not as prominent or as successful as the ones in the US. Narutolovehinata5 tccsdnew 00:01, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
It's also worth remembering it was only about 9 years ago when the then US president espoused the teaching of intelligent design in schools [1] [2]. While he did later say he didn't think evolution was wrong [3], I think the evidence suggests calling it a tiny fringe isn't particularly accurate. Nil Einne (talk) 15:32, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Interestingly, similar polls say that, the percentage of Americans who believe in creationism decline as education level goes up: I've read that, in one poll, only around 11% of Americans with a college education were creationists. Also, I've read that belief in creationism changes from religion to religion: in America at least, Roman Catholics, Anglicans, mainline Protestants, and Orthodox Christians generally do not believe in or support creationism, but Evangelicals and certain other kinds of Christians, such as Seventh Day Adventists, Mormons, and Jehovah's Witnesses, do. Those still don't answer though exactly why Fundamentalism as a whole (not just evolution teaching controversies) took root in America, but not elsewhere. Narutolovehinata5 tccsdnew 00:01, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
I think the rise of the Christian Right was a reaction to the whole Civil Rights stuff. Asmrulz (talk) 00:56, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
That statement implies that you, or at least the people you're thinking of, think that civil rights are a bad thing. Wierd. Is that an American thing too? Cos people in other countries have civil rights too. HiLo48 (talk) 08:06, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
He's not wrong, but it's kind of a simplistic view of a complex situation. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 08:56, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Well, thanks Asmrulz (talk) 18:10, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
How does saying "X was a reaction to Y" "imply" Y is bad? I can see how saying "whole X stuff" may sound disparaging, though. And yes, it's an American thing. Europe has Front National, UKIP, AfD etc I think for the same purpose. This is because America is a 1.5 party state Asmrulz (talk) 17:44, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
And Europe wasn't as Christian to start with, even 40 years ago. As far memes go, there are ones that are still functional and ones that are dead. Much like with Greek Polytheism, you can't really rally people behind you with Christianity in Europe (anymore.) Asmrulz (talk) 18:18, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Europe has been getting more and more secular (non-religious) as time has gone on. At one time, centuries ago, the church was an empire, a dictatorship, worse than anything we've ever seen in America. That's part of the reason people fled to the future USA. About the American right-wing, keep in mind that they have always been white-male supremacist. It's just that they, like the church in Europe, once had pretty much their way, but their power has been slowly chipped away at, over the decades and centuries, but that element is still there, lurking. The white supremacists are persistent, and as soon as liberals let up at all, the right wing is on it, ready to exploit anyone they can. One way to accomplish that task is to discourage potential Democrats from voting, as with the rash of so-called "voter reform" laws that have arisen since Obama came into office. By an amazing coincidence, all these laws are being pushed by the right wing. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 18:41, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm not sure that the secularisation of Europe is the issue here. Speaking for the UK, after some initial resistance to Darwinism, his ideas were quickly assimilated into the prevailing view at the end of the 19th century, that science was evidence of God's work. If you do meet any creationists here, they are generally members of US inspired Evangelical movements which have enjoyed recent growth in the UK, rather than followers of the "traditional" churches which seem happy to accept Darwinism and explain the creation story in Genesis as an allegory. Alansplodge (talk) 13:32, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
As someone who is neither American nor European (not even British), these discussions are fascinating, because where I happen to live, Australia, is seemingly different again. If the religious right in America really equates to white supremicism, the question then is, where does this white supremicism (connected to religion) in the US come from? Is it from slave owning days? Did it come from the Europe of the time of early white settlement? There are racists here, but it's not connected to religion. In fact the churches have been one of the big areas of opposition to our two major political parties pandering to racists in recent times. HiLo48 (talk) 18:55, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
It's also different in America as well. The story of Christians as racist, politically conservative, antiscientific white trash plays well as a narrative, but doesn't bear out in reality. People like the Westboro Baptist Church make good headlines, but don't really represent anyone or any greater societal principle beyond the fact that stories that are written about them get more eyeballs than stories that say "Tolerant Christians welcome a diverse group of people into their church and do nice things for other people". Those stories don't get much eyeballs. --Jayron32 19:13, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
Since nobody mentioned it above (I think): Christianity in Korea#Creationism. Staecker (talk) 19:52, 20 September 2014 (UTC)

Duty managers[edit]

Why are duty managers in retail, leisure, hospitality, tourism and transport etc paid so little compared to other managers and even other jobs in general? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:03, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Supply and demand. Employers will pay the minimum necessary to fill the position with a qualified person. If they could pay even less, they would. --Jayron32 12:13, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
I don't think it's quite as simple as that. If you want better managers than your competition, you need to pay a bit more. If you want to be able to retain your employees, you need to pay more. If you want your employees to have good morale and thus a good work ethic, you need to pay more. Paying the absolute minimum will get you dissatisfied employees, absenteeism, a high turnover rate, and poor quality work, dooming the company to failure. StuRat (talk) 14:46, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
What makes you think they are? You would need some numbers to back up this assertion. --Viennese Waltz 12:14, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
These are service sectors that, in the United States at least, have among the lowest requirements for entry. Entry-level positions in these fields typically do not require a college degree. As a result, there are numerous applicants for every position, and, as Jayron32 points out, the law of supply and demand dictates that when supply is large relative to demand, the price (in this case, wage) will be low. Because managers in these fields are typically recruited from among the entry-level staff, there is ample supply and strong competition for managerial positions. Once again, high supply relative to demand dictates low pay. Another factor is that, since entry-level jobs pay so poorly, only a small increment is needed to attract applicants for managerial positions in these sectors. By contrast, many other service sectors typically require university-level and often specialized qualifications for entry. Since the supply of these is scarcer, wages for entry-level jobs in these sectors are higher. Since companies have to offer an increment over the (relatively high) entry-level wage to attract managers, salaries for managers in sectors such as finance or technology receive much higher pay than managers in retail and other kindred service sectors. Marco polo (talk) 14:43, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Was anyone ever crazy enough to shoot at a vice-president?[edit]

A question above about tobacco put me in mind of the world's (not just one nation's) need of a good five-cent cigar. This, inevitably, led to Thomas R. Marshall's comment that ""No one was ever crazy enough to shoot at a vice-president". So, my question is - was anyone ever crazy enough to shoot at a vice-president? DuncanHill (talk) 16:22, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

A quick search of our list of presidential assassination plots doesn't show anything beyond the aborted attempt to get Andrew Johnson, and I don't know if you posted this knowingly or ironically, but someone did try to kill Vice President Marshall - but with a bomb, not a gun. --Golbez (talk) 16:27, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
typically people target both the president and vice president as they tend to hold the same political views; i can't seem to find any shooting, but this article shows that someone tried to kill Vice President Cheney - but with a bomb, not a gun. ~Helicopter Llama~ 16:33, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Thank you both - I didn't know that anyone had tried to kill Marshall, or indeed Andrew Johnson - but then I don't know who Andrew Johnson was - (linking in the hope it'll tell me who he was). It doesn't surprise me that someone tried to kill Cheney, frankly it's surprising that more people haven't had a bash at him. DuncanHill (talk) 18:01, 17 September 2014 (UTC) self defence? AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:23, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Johnson was Lincoln's vice president. The assassination of Lincoln also included planned attacks on Johnson, the secretary of war, and the secretary of state, and maybe some others. Booth intended to kill off the highest levels of the American executive branch, maybe in hopes of giving the Confederacy another chance. His plan only succeeded against Lincoln, and ultimately cause the south more grief than they might have expected from Lincoln. Oops. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 18:19, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Luis María Argaña, vice-president of Paraguay, was assassinated (shot) in 1999. Chang Myon, South Korea's vice president, was shot in 1956 but survived. --Hegvald (talk) 07:32, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

Now that I think about it, would op consider 3-19 shooting incident as an example? Also, this article states that someone tried to kill Iraq's VP, Adil Abdul-Mahdi - but with a bomb, not a gun. ~Helicopter Llama~ 20:49, 20 September 2014 (UTC)

Kevin O'Higgins, Vice-President of the Executive Council of the Irish Free State (i.e. effectively the deputy prime minister), was assassinated by the IRA in 1927 - probably because he signed the execution orders of 77 IRA people during the Irish Civil War. -- Arwel Parry (talk) 21:24, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Are men/women's face just as beautiful as the opposite sex?[edit]

There seems to be a stigma that a women's face is more beautiful than a man's and it may be due to evolution, but looking at nature-all the male species are a bit more showy/prettier on the male side. Like Lions (who are stronger as males juxtaposed to females?) and peacocks. I was wondering where viewing females as more beautiful occurred in the human species or if it is true as an actuality. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:E:9580:CCB:8D00:5367:854E:290C (talk) 16:54, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

For starters, see Sexual selection and sexual dimorphism, then check out assortative mating, then skim through beauty and physical attraction. From an evolutionary ecology point of view, things like showy peacocks and drab peahens come about because the females have higher selective pressure on remaining undetected while brooding young. As a general tendency, if birds exhibit dimorphism, the males tend to be brighter colored. But this is not universal. I find many female spiders to be more beautiful than their male counterparts, but this is often because they are bigger and just easier to appreciate. Sexual_dimorphism_in_non-human_primates also has some info on how certain non-human female primates have bright colors at certain times... Finally, your last sentence is unclear. Surely some people view human females as more beautiful than males, surely some people view males as more beautiful. SemanticMantis (talk) 17:42, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
[edit conflict] Beauty is entirely cultural and subjective, so it is impossible to refer to beauty as "true" in anything other than a relative sense. It is true that in modern Western culture, women are more often regarded as "beautiful" than men. Heterosexual male domination of society and thought, until very recent times, may account for the valuing of women primarily for their appearance. Of course, in the culture of ancient Greece, adolescent boys were often valued more than women for their beauty. Marco polo (talk) 17:51, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

2601:E:9580:CCB:8D00:5367:854E:290C -- In the majority of non-human animal species with sex differentiation, the female puts more effort or work into reproduction than the male, and the male has minimal or no involvement beyond the act of mating itself. In such circumstances, evolutionary pressure is for females to be choosier about males than males are about females. A famous partial analogue of such animal practices in one human group is the Guérewol...
However, if the underlying parameters are changed, then the result changes. Humans are a highly social species, and human infants are relatively helpless or unable to support themselves over a prolonged period, which encourages the formation of relatively long-term male-female pair bonding. When males make such major commitments, there's now pressure on them to be choosy about the females they are willing to make such commitments to... AnonMoos (talk) 05:29, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

I have some interesting questions regarding ethnicity/cultures in United Sates and Canada[edit]

1. First of all; regrading African American culture in New Orleans; Why do black people in New Orleans connect to their African roots through Louisiana_Voodoo, Kwanzaa, Soul_food and Jazz music? How did they manage to keep those things? 2. Also doesn't ethnicity seem to be not simple especially in western culture; What about the french culture in New Orleans or the Creole culture? The natives, Portuguese and french Americans seem to keep up with culture to. Also french Canadians in Quebec and Jews and Mexicans in New York City? There are no rules for how people identify themselves; like for explain the Wikipedia article Who is a Jew? 3. Also are the big cities in US and Canada with ethnic mix are among them New York City, Los Angeles, Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, Vancouver, Abbotsford,_British_Columbia? And if you compare New York City to Abbotsford,_British_Columbia, Chilliwack, even to remote place like Grise_Fiord in Canada dose not alot pace suffer racial problems? Just because a place is small doesn't mean the problem isn't the same. Venustar84 (talk) 18:03, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

You have actually asked multiple questions... not just one. Which would you like us to try to address first? Blueboar (talk) 18:09, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Question three I would like answered. Venustar84 (talk) 18:23, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Ethnicity isn't simple anywhere. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:15, 17 September 2014 (UTC
Regarding Canada, see Racism in North America#Canada - there clearly are problems with racism in Canada. Understanding them requires a knowledge of Canadian history, and of the history of the majority and minority ethnicities, and asking for a useful 'explanation' that starts from the premise that the situation in the United States is some sort of norm to compare to isn't going to get you far. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:38, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
I can't speak for other cities, but New York is surprisingly free of ethnic and racial tensions for a city it's size (we do have them, but it tends not to erupt into riots). My personal theory as to why is that the city is made up of lots of small enclaves and neighborhoods. Many are mixed in their ethnic and racial make up... and those which are predominantly of one ethnic/racial group tend to be located in close proximity to the enclaves of other groups. This means that there is more interaction between the various ethnic and racial groups, and people of all groups experience what those of other groups are like. We cherish what makes each group different (although we also also freely borrow from one culture to the next... I have heard it quipped that only in NY is your Chinese food cooked and delivered by Mexicans, and your Mexican food cooked and delivered by Chinese), but more importantly we experience how similar the various groups actually are. There is simply less "them vs us".
That and the fact that we are united in our disdain for all things Boston. Blueboar (talk) 18:54, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Feeling's mutual, pal... --Jayron32 00:10, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
I would like my first 2 questions answered please. Venustar84 (talk) 00:26, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
The answer to question 2 is there is no answer As the rambling, complicated nature of the question itself, ethnicity is a constantly evolving and changing and shifting thing. Cultures change and merge and shift and assimilate quite constantly; indeed radical cultural change can occur often within a generation or two. Alexis de Tocqueville noted and documented a unique and distinct American culture in his writings, only a few decades after the United States of America came into being. There are cultural groups today that would not be recognized in our parents time; and cultures today which bear the same names as in generations past have evolved to be quite different than in the past. You answered it yourself in your own question. You stated "There are no rules for how people identify themselves" YOU ARE CORRECT. There are no rules. Get used to it. --Jayron32 00:39, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm sorry Jayron32. Did I say something to offend you? You seem a little angry. Venustar84 (talk) 16:09, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Not angry at all. You have nothing to apologize for. I have no idea where you would think I was angry. --Jayron32 16:50, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Well you did say Get used to it. Venustar84 (talk) 04:56, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I read that comment as being humorous. It's an often-used expression for any situation which is unlikely to change. If English is not your native language, that subtlety might not have come through. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 17:31, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
As for question 1), voodoo was passed on through families and does have African origins, but the other elements you cite like kwanzaa and soul food are far more recent creations, dating back to the mid or late 20th century, when African Americans were trying to create a positive identity. Kwanzaa is a modern form of syncretism that does not exist as such in Africa. Neither kwanzaa nor soul food are particularly associated with New Orleans, by the way; soul food for example is something that is seen in African-American neighborhoods in large northern cities. In contrast, Louisiana and New Orleans have their own very distinctive culinary tradition shared by all races. Jazz is also not something that can be traced back to Africa; it's a modern musical form that started at the very end of the 19th century using elements from African music but also from various other musical sources present in New Orleans and other cities along the Mississippi River. --Xuxl (talk) 07:41, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

Why do some women hold their fork like this?[edit]

Instead of holding the fork like a pencil, they place their forefinger at the tip of the handle and wrap the other fingers around the handle. In order to pick up food (like a salad bowl), they would spear the food vertically. I usually see American women eat this way. Men typically hold the fork like a pencil. (talk) 21:58, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

I changed the word in the header from "folk" to "fork". Holding "folk" in the way you describe would be somewhat painful for all concerned.  :) -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:26, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
It might depend on the size of the utensil and the size of the hand. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:04, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

It is not a gender thing but a cultural thing; the article is Fork Etiquette. (talk) 13:11, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

Indeed. Eating utensil etiquette calls the style with a "pencil" grip in which the fork is switched from one hand to the other "American style", whereas in "European style" the fork is held with fingers around the handle, tines pointing donw, and is held in one hand (usually the left). Here in the UK, European style is much more common than American style. Gandalf61 (talk) 13:23, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
That seems to be contrary to what I've observed. I swear that the women held the fork with the tines up and the index finger was close to the tip that was at the opposite end of the tines, not in the same direction as the tines. So, no. I don't think it's European-style. I think they were just using the fork incorrectly. (talk) 22:36, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm American, and might use my fork either way. When just using it to lift food, I'd use the "pencil style" (although I hold a pencil down by the "business end" while a fork I hold as far away from that end as possible, to keep food off my hand). For food that needs to be speared, like a piece of meat I am trying to cut, I switched to the other method, with my thumb on the end to keep the fork from slipping. Once cut, I switch back to the "pencil method" to eat the piece of meat. I'm also curious how anyone could hold a piece of meat for cutting without using this method. StuRat (talk) 14:13, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Yes... here in America we have the inalienable right to hold our forks any way we wish to... We also have the freedom to change our minds part way through the meal (assuming we even bother with forks at all... there is a reason why the hot dog, the hamburger and the pizza slice are so popular over here.) Blueboar (talk) 23:16, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Whereas in England, those unable to eat peas from the back of a fork are social outcasts. Serves them right too. See How to eat with a knife and fork in England Alansplodge (talk)
I eat my peas with honey. I've done it all my life. It makes the peas taste funny, But it keeps them on the knife. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 11:53, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Cars driving into houses and shopfronts - what the hell is going on?[edit]

Duncan Hill's reference above to people driving their cars into the sides of houses or the front of shops caused me to reflect that the incidence of this has increased dramatically over the past, say, 5 years. Certainly true in Australia. Or maybe it's being reported more often due to who-knows-what factor(s) perhaps including CCTV and mobile phones, not to mention the incidence of drug driving (although the age range of the drivers seems to be disproportionately skewed towards the more senior ranks. I hope that discounts the drug factor to a large degree: Grannies driving on ice, what a horrible thought).

But it's always been a shocking and newsworthy event, so the mere absence of as-it-happened footage never stopped stories being broadcast showing the grisly aftermath, and the relieved survivors saying how close they were to being killed. Of course, they don't always survive, as in a recent incident in Sydney in which an unlicenced driver lost control (I assume it wasn't deliberate) and killed a young girl waiting at a bus stop and then proceeded to drive on into a chemist shop, virtually demolishing it and seriously injuring customers inside.

These sorts of incidents used to happen, maybe, once a month. Now, it's 2 or 3 times a week. I've seen no commentary on the rise in the numbers, but my better half and I watch the news and far too often exchange "What, AGAIN??"-type comments, and we can't be the only people to have noticed this very disturbing trend. Is this trend replicated in other countries and has there been any commentary on or analysis of it (as distinct from commentary on the causes of specific incidents)? Thanks. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:13, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

My perception is that it's also getting more common in the UK. Not got any figures to back that up tho'. Grannies on ice driving on ice would be an absolute nightmare! DuncanHill (talk) 22:18, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
This article by " agrees that there is an increase of reports, but gives no numbers, and seems to explain it with an increase of attention toward this specific type of accident ("storefront crashes, pedal error accidents, and cases where sidewalk dining areas have been overrun by out-of-control vehicles"). "In one ten-day stretch in December 2013, a national coffee chain suffered multiple incidents that resulted in sixteen injuries. In recent months, such storefront accidents have received increasing notice from academics, engineering bodies retailers and the news media."
The same site has some statistics, but only very recent ones, and though they are interesting, there's nothing answering your question regarding actual increase during, say the last ten years. These numbers seem to be hard to find, and those that can be found are hard to compare, but the incidence is astonishingly high, as you can see in various reports when you google "storefront crash". For example this article which starts out with "Vehicle-into-building crashes happen more frequently than most people think. Every day in the U.S., there are 50-60 serious storefront accidents" ---Sluzzelin talk 22:35, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
A century or so ago, people were restricted to viewing moving images once, live. Then they could relive other, richer people's memories. Then the home movies. Then the Internet. Now we can watch our friends stream themselves in storefront windows, and likewise. Everything's recorded, electronic records work so much better for recollecting news events, especially frantic or drugged ones. This reality leads more people to become frantic and drugged, and so we have a rise in tragic attention deficit disorder. Everywhere. Storefronts generally have security cameras, that's all.
Simple answer, we should only view moving images once, live. Like we did for millenia and every other species still does. Easier said than done, of course. No TV, no beer, something something. InedibleHulk (talk) 22:53, September 17, 2014 (UTC)
There was one here a couple of months ago where the driver ran into the front of the store, killed a kid and caused the kid's pregnant mother to have a miscarriage, and that baby later died too. Adam Bishop (talk) 23:40, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Backed into it. Not that it really matters. InedibleHulk (talk) 01:43, September 18, 2014 (UTC)
Personally, I chalk it up to the fact that there are simply more store fronts around today than there used to be ... and fewer trees standing between the road and the store fronts. Blueboar (talk) 02:53, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
So long, shopping mall. Hello, power center! Lot easier to crash into a motel than a cumbersome hallwayed hotel, too. Especially after a few power naps and energy drinks. InedibleHulk (talk) 06:54, September 18, 2014 (UTC)
There's been a number of cases of truck drivers following their satnav's and going down streets that were too narrow or have too tight bends and going into the front of shops or houses that way. Good satnavs have a setting where you can say you're driving a lorry and don't want to be send through such places. Dmcq (talk) 11:16, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
WP:OR alert butHa! I found a supporting source, see below I put it down to increased sales of automatic cars. A lot of these incidents are ones where the driver has confused the brake and accelerator (leading to comments like "No matter how hard I braked, the car just got faster!"). With the need to engage a clutch and change gear, it just seems to me a much less likely accident. --Dweller (talk) 11:46, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
(e/c) I'm not sure I buy that explanation and I don't recall any indication that the perpetrators were accidentally hitting the wrong pedal - just that they got confused. My own OR is that this kind of thing is on an upswing and it has more to do with driving habits, though in a complicated way. For one thing, drivers (and pedestrians) are more distracted than they ever were before - texting, phoning, skipping songs, innumerable street signs, jaywalkers ambling head-down out into traffic, road rage. Seniors are often singled out when accidents like this happen, perhaps deservedly. They're too old to drive any more, but they lack options. Thirty years ago, it was common for adults to take their elderly parents shopping, but that gets less and less true as families get busier and spread further apart. Complicate that with the notion that "not being able to drive yourself any more" is the first step towards "getting put into a home" and you have older folks who are rightfully fearful of admitting they're having trouble. Each week they get by is another week they keep their independence. Adult offspring likewise turn a blind eye to this because of the ensuing hassle. And no politician is going to speak up against the demographic that votes more than any other to enact legislation forcing the elderly to get tested more often. Matt Deres (talk) 14:28, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
Matt, here's I don't know how many thousand hits for when people confused the two pedals. ([4]) --Dweller (talk) 15:42, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
And here's a source quoting a scientist who has researched the issue: "Dr. Teasdale suggested that this type of collision was not as common in Europe as it is here in North America. His hypothesis is that this may be because European vehicles tend to have manual transmissions and drivers are used to using both feet when they drive. This may help them to locate the pedals more accurately." I think I can strike my OR alert now. --Dweller (talk) 15:48, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
There was a recent incident where an elderly driver smashed into a store, and then KEPT DRIVING: "Come on, you have to notice something has changed: 'Let's see, there's Main Street, Elm, Automotive, Jewelry, Groceries...'". StuRat (talk) 14:19, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

The incidents caused by confusion between brake and accelerator pedals tend to start with the car being stationary and the driver intending to pull out of a parking bay but instead goes the other way, into the shop adjacent to the bay just across the footpath. They're in a special class, imo. The Sydney event occurred after the car drove around a corner and failed to correct correctly. Exactly the same thing had happened in the very same spot 7 years earlier, with the same fatal result and the same shop being demolished, and ever since then the locals had been asking for something to be done to make sure history didn't repeat itself. But the local council considered it safe, yet hey bingo, here we go again. But even those sorts of cases are special cases too. The cases I'm really talking about are the ones where a car is travelling down a straight road and somehow it ends up being driven into the side of a house or some other building that by definition was not in the middle of the road. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 20:02, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

September 18[edit]

Roger Touhy[edit]

I have information on this story. Yours is most accurate. But Rogers father James, Had a set of twin boys in Ireland. He left their mother alone, and went to America to find his pot of gold. My grandmother Esther Legge, (Touhy then D.O.B, 09/04/1927, cork records) was the daughter of one of James`s sons he left behind in Ireland. One of my grandmothers elder sister`s, Kitty, was hauled from class in the convent, and given a telegram upon James`s death, from a solicitor, giving a massive sum of money. But, my great grandfather threw it in the fire, and said it was blood money, even though he had 13 children, and no shoes, coal picking and school was barefoot. There was no food for any of them, it was shocking. We have got the book the stolen years, but, I am unable to get a copy of the film that was shown to all the stars via a red carpet, in my great great great uncles prison.... can you help with that....? Also, the amount of money that was offered, meant that James wasnt as clean a policeman as it was over repeatedly stated. Its all very exciting, I wondered if you could give me a contact to fill in gaps for me, and for me to fill in gaps for them, so that I may be able to fill some gaps in for my wonderful, beautiful kind nan, while shes still here. shes 87, and the most remarkable human being. Shes been my mentor for almost 40 years. And I would love to repay her unthwarted kindness and ever loving spirit, with something extra about this for her. Is there a chance at all, you might be able to help me...?

kindest regards, Sarah Ajax. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:14, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

(The relevant article is Roger Touhy.) Unfortunately, the information you've given can't be added to the article purely on the basis of your recollections, fascinating as they are. We need reliable independent sources for what you're saying, which basically means reputable books, newspapers, magazines etc. If you can find anything in those sources that corroborates what you say, then you can add the information to the article yourself. But in my opinion you would be better off making your own blog through something like Blogspot or Wordpress and telling the story yourself on there. Thanks for sharing, --Viennese Waltz 07:25, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
And making a blog about it might allow others to use the information for the Wikipedia article. We do sometimes cite blogs, though they are not usually preferred. SemanticMantis (talk) 14:49, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm curious to know whether he was any relation to Patrick L. Touhy. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 07:39, 18 September 2014 (UTC)


What the meaning (Literary) of the oculus in Roman Republic. Many poets used this noun (like catullus etc) I wonder if there is something more that just eyes. -- (talk) 05:46, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

Literally, oculus is eye, but just as in many modern languages, it's sometimes used to denote similar things and related concepts. See wikt:oculus. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:16, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
The eyes are an extremely important part of the way we interact with other human beings. Thus from biblical to modern times we have variations on "the eyes are the window to the soul", and the eyes are widely mentioned in poetry, pop music etc with both literal and not-so-literal meanings. One can imagine Catullus was doing much the same.
It's worth noting that the word osculum (even more similar to oculus than it looks to us, because the last two letters can be largely disregarded) can mean "kiss" in Latin. Although Catullus did not use that word for "kiss" in Catullus 5 where he spends half the poem obsessing over kisses, perhaps he is thinking of similar things when he uses oculus elsewhere. Imagine if the English words for "kiss" and "eye" were only one letter different, the ambiguity would certainly turn up in a few pop songs. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 21:41, 18 September 2014 (UTC)
The mind's eye is just fallible, but mirrors always lie. For further evidence, see Zero. Hear it, too; the lyrics are important, but the video has the Roman connection. InedibleHulk (talk) 21:57, September 18, 2014 (UTC)
Maybe also see Eye and Lost Highway InedibleHulk (talk) 22:02, September 18, 2014 (UTC)
According to the Teach Yourself Latin dictionary, it also means "bud". Fiddlersmouth (talk) 15:21, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
A little bud works well for light tasks like reflection and illumination. According to Philp J. Fry, it also speeds and slows the passage of time. He'd know, being from the future.
On that note, here's an alleged oculus, but when that guy's older, he'll probably realize it's an octopus. No relation. Or is there? InedibleHulk (talk) 22:18, September 20, 2014 (UTC)

Grand Ducal Highness[edit]

The Luxembourg Grand Ducal Family traditionally used the style of Grand Ducal Highness prior to the marriage of Charlotte, Grand Duchess of Luxembourg and Prince Felix of Bourbon-Parma when they added the "royal" title of Prince of Bourbon-Parma to their descendants. But Jean, Grand Duke of Luxembourg relinquish the titles for Bourbon-Parma in 1986, so why are current members of the Luxembourg Grand Ducal Family still Royal Highness rather than Grand Ducal Highness?--The Emperor's New Spy (talk) 20:55, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

Grand dukes, grand duchesses, hereditary grand dukes and hereditary grand duchesses were always "Royal Highnesses". Other members of the family were "Grand Ducal Highnesses". Due to descent from the Bourbons through Felix, all princes of Luxembourg are now "Royal Highnesses". Jean relinquished his father's titles in 1986, but resumed them in 1995. Surtsicna (talk) 21:27, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

human Ecology[edit]

three examples of human and non-human — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:27, 18 September 2014 (UTC)

Are you asking a question, and, if this is your homework, have you made an attempt to find the answer yourself in our Human ecology article? Dbfirs 00:20, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
McElligot, Thidwick and Horton had human minds and non-human forms. So that's six. See On Beyond Zebra! for 20 more, and the Dr. Seuss bibliography for a general education on ecology. InedibleHulk (talk) 22:07, September 19, 2014 (UTC)

September 19[edit]

10 different qira'ats in this audio[edit]

This is for Muslims only. Sorry. Does anybody or can anybody list the qira'ats that this qari used to recite Ch.2 verse 255 known as Ayatul Kursi? Here is the link: — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:27, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

Why is it for Muslims only? Can't people of other faiths, or of no faith, answer it as well? --Viennese Waltz 07:37, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
The truths of Islam are so self-evident, if you know enough Islam to answer this, you'd be a believer as well (ie. there's no way your interest is academic.) Entertaining ideas without accepting them is Western relativism and moral confusion. Or something. Asmrulz (talk) 11:21, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm unclear why understanding beliefs different than mine is morally confusing. I can comprehend the beliefs of others, and I can understand why they believe them, but doing so doesn't mean I have to agree with them. That is, having some bit of knowledge (understanding the beliefs of others) doesn't make me a relativist (agreeing that conflicting beliefs must all be correct). The notion that one must refuse to try to understand other people in order to be morally pure seems odd... --Jayron32 11:58, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
link Asmrulz (talk) 19:16, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
link back atcha --Jayron32 19:33, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I was first. Also, this :) Asmrulz (talk) 20:08, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I can understand why people may want to ask questions about beliefs only to believers (I think that this is rational, because human ability to understand the minds of outsiders is low), but that's right that this one is not a question about a belief, it is merely a technical question, so such request would not make sense. Since I cannot answer this question, I shut up. - (talk) 12:27, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I believe this question should be removed or hidden. Wikipedia reference desk is for everyone, if they want to address only particular people they should go off to an appropriate other forum instead. Dmcq (talk) 13:16, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Why, if someone knows Arabic by ear and knows Quran well, why can't he or she answer the question? It is a request for facts, not for beliefs or opinions, so it is okay. It has been formulated lamely, but this shouldn't be a problem in this case, the asker apparently merely attempted to be polite to everyone (with little luck). - (talk) 13:24, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
The questioner said the question was for Muslims only. The questioner should go to such a forum and not waste other people's time. I'm perfectly aware of what you said, I used to know a Dutchman who the local Chinese used to go to when they wanted to know what some obscure Chinese character meant. Dmcq (talk) 13:33, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I don't think it was a request. I think it was an excuse. The person apparently felt badly about asking an obscure question, so he just acknowledged this (in wrong terms) and said "sorry". We can simply treat it this way. - (talk) 13:57, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I agree. The questioner, trying to be polite, excused himself or herself for asking a question that he or she (probably correctly) assumed that only a Muslim might be able to answer. I'm sure that the questioner would be pleasantly surprised if a non-Muslim were able to answer, but I doubt that that will happen. Can the person who asked the question comment on whether you would be open to a response by a non-Muslim who happened to be knowledgeable about qira'at? Unless the questioner responds that he or she would not accept an answer from a non-Muslim, I urge that we assume good faith and let the question and any responses stand. Marco polo (talk) 14:08, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
The questioner made the mistake of assuming that RefDeskers were capable of assuming good faith. Some can, some rather voluble ones can't. I made the same mistake not that long ago. DuncanHill (talk) 21:01, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
Well they're most probably in the standard order as in our article about them Qira'at, otherwise someone would have listed out the order specially. Dmcq (talk) 00:56, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Duncan, to say of any human being that he is incapable of assuming good faith doesn't sit well with me. We can all do it, but it's a challenge to do it all the time, and I daresay we all sometimes fall by the wayside. Some perhaps more than others, but who's keeping tally? -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 11:50, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

German stereotypes[edit]

What stereotypes exist of people from different states of Germany? Note, I'm not interested in stereotypes of German people in general, only in the supposed differences between people from different parts of the country. And I'm not interested in whether the stereotypes have any basis in reality, either. Thank you, --Viennese Waltz 12:29, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

Die Zeit posted a map of negative stereotypes a couple of years ago. The article was "Negative Vorurteile". Many of the attributes were collected from travel guides, and the author comments on their questionable accuracy and the nasty way that stereotypes have of spreading anyway (but you're not interested in that ;-). I will take the trouble of translating the adjectives later on, if no one beats me to it (but I understand you understand German, Vienna Waltz). ---Sluzzelin talk 12:40, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Ok, here goes:
Sylter are decadent.
North Frisians are proud.
East Frisians are dumb.
Holsteiner are taciturn.
Mecklenburger are sluggish.
Hamburger are reserved/aloof.
Low Saxons are sober-minded.
Hannoveraner are boring.
Altmärker are stubborn.
Brandenburger are lower class/vulgar/chav.
Berliner are gruff.
Potsdamer are nouveau-riche.
Münsteraner are conservative.
Ruhrgebietler are simple.
Düsseldorfer are (also) nouveau-riche.
Kölner are corrupt.
Rheinländer are superficial.
Sauerländer are pig-headed.
Westphalians are brittle.
Harzer are lethargic.
Thuringians are hillbillies.
Saxons are cunning.
Erzgebirgler are quarrelsome.
Dresdner are slow.
Eifler are sober-minded.
Frankfurter are snobby.
Hessen are talkative.
Pfälzer are hoggy
Saarländer are petit-bourgeois.
Upper Franconians are silent.
Nürnberger are stuffy.
Middle Franconians are stolid and sedate.
Lower Bavarians are narcissistic.
Münchner are snotty.
Upper Bavarians are conservative.
Baden-Baden is of old money.
Schwarzwälder are uncommunicative.
Freiburger are environmentally smug and petty (don't know how to translate "ökologisch verspießt").
Badenser are withdrawn.
Bodenseer are slow.
Swabians are stingy.
Allgäuer are superstitious.
---Sluzzelin talk 13:20, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Wow, what a great response. Thanks so much Sluzzelin, my German would never have been up to translating all those adjectives. I need to save this somewhere and if there was a RD Response of the Month Award, this would get it. --Viennese Waltz 13:54, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
How amusing! I happen to know a Sylterin. I had never heard of that stereotype before, but she is indeed decadent. On the other hand, I recall making a visit to Hamburg when I was living in Berlin and having the impression, contrary to the stereotype, that Hamburgers were friendly and open (by comparison with Berliners, anyway). But of course all stereotypes are unreliable and basically wrong. Marco polo (talk) 14:16, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
both Hamburgers and Berliners are delicious, though --Golbez (talk) 14:24, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
What do you have against Frankfurters? --Jayron32 14:25, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
The irony here is that a hot dog could be considered snobby --Golbez (talk) 15:56, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
When I think of German stereotypes, this is what comes to mind. Which of the above list does this go with? ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 17:26, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
That is an Upper Bavarian or possibly an Allgäuer, Bugs, but of course that is an outsider's stereotype of a German. Marco polo (talk) 17:43, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
Of course I wasn't familiar with each and every of the stereotypes listed there, and I think they are of varying reach and traction within Germany too. Three stereotypes that resonate with what even most German-speaking Swiss have heard of are the thick East Frisians (we have an article on East Frisian jokes too, and one of the reasons I've known about them since I can remember is probably Otto, an East Frisian with an extremely high IQ, I am certain of that :-), the stingy Swabians (they're our neighbours, after all, and we're very similar: there's a bit under Swabian culture and stereotypes) and the gruff (in a good way :-) Berliners (didn't find anything in our Berlin article, but wiktionary does have an entry on Berliner Schnauze). ---Sluzzelin talk 18:27, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

History of progressive income tax[edit]

Recently Progressive tax was edited in a way that I find difficult to integrate because I lack access to dusty historical stuff that if someone has summarized online already, I apparently lack the time to find. Can anyone verify, "The first peace time graduated income tax was actually in Prussia in 1891."? EllenCT (talk) 16:22, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

According to this source, on page 108, Prussia introduced its first graduated income tax in 1851, not 1891. Marco polo (talk) 17:57, 19 September 2014 (UTC)
I have found online an article titled The Prussian Income Tax from an 1892 issue of The Quarterly Journal of Economics. I am no expert on the history of taxation so there is a lot there that goes over my head. However, it does seem to provide a detailed examination of the evolution of income tax in Prussia to the 1891 tax - see page 223. This states that the 1851 income tax was not progressive, an 1873 reform brought in something "practically" (but not exactly) a progressive income tax, and finally in 1891 a progressive income tax. Whether it was the first ever, anywhere, may be harder to prove. But the reference should at least be helpful in updating the article to include Prussia. - EronTalk 18:34, 19 September 2014 (UTC)

September 20[edit]

Collective term for "Indian-ish" people[edit]

Is there a recognized term in English ethnographic literature for collectively referring to the "brown" people of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, etc? A term that differentiates them from the (more or less "white") Middle Easterners to the west and the "yellow" people to the east. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 12:22, 20 September 2014 (UTC)

In the UK, it's "Asian". That won't work in the USA and Australia, at least. In cricketing circles the term "the sub-continent" is used to describe that area and people from it. HiLo48 (talk) 12:27, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm not sure if "cricket playing asians" would make it past a competent ethnography journal editor. :) Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 12:33, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
South Asian. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 13:15, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
I've seen South Asia(n) used to refer to places such as Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, etc, so it's not unambiguous. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 17:06, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
I've mainly heard South Asian used to refer to India, Pakistan, etc, and Central Asian for Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and most countries ending in "-stan" that weren't former Mughal territory. Since Kazakhstan's about as far north as Mongolia, I can't figure out why anyone would call it South Asian. Ian.thomson (talk) 17:49, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
Per Bugs, who is correct here, see South Asian ethnic groups. The countries that Roger names are always referred to as Central Asia. --Jayron32 17:54, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
In my part of the world a lot of folks of Indian, Pakistani, etc., origin or descent refer to themselves as "Brown". But it's not a term I've heard many (non-racist) white folks use. - EronTalk 17:43, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
That would refer back to old colloquial terms for the races: white, black, red, yellow, brown. (What, no green?) ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 00:45, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Tamil villagers of southern India
  • I'll agree with Bugs and Jayron above. The two largest broad ethnic groups of India are the Indo-Aryan peoples, mostly of the north and the Dravidian peoples (pictured,left) of the south, although India is far more ethnically diverse than Europe. The first is a branch of Indo-European and the second speak a linguistic phylum with no proven relations. Many Indo-Aryans of the north are quite fair-skinned. μηδείς (talk) 01:00, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Thanks all, I was indeed misremembering the label used for "the ...stan" countries (formerly part of the Soviet Union), They are indeed usually grouped under the "Central Asian" label, so South Asian makes the most sense. Apparently the Indo-Aryans are related to the Persians and thus are "Caucasians" insofar as that term still has any validity ouside of tv series police jargon. Is there a common (genetic) lineage between Dravidian people and the superficially similar looking "brown" people of the Malaysia/Indonesia region? Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 10:35, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

The 'Caucasians' of South Asia
Well, User:Dodger67, the Indo-Aryan and Iranian languages form the Indo-Iranian sub-branch of the Indo-European languages. See our article Afghan Girl (pictured, right) for a very famous picture of a Pashto (an Iranian language) woman from Afghanistan. She would definitely be considered "Caucasian" if she had been born in Europe, and people of her appearance brought the Indo-Aryan languages (e.g., Sanskrit, Hindi) to India. You will find people resembling her in Kashmir and other parts of (northern) India. The Dravidians seem to have entered India from the northwest as well. They may have been related to the Harappan culture and to the Elamites of the Fertile Crescent. The evidence I have seen for this is highly dubious and speculative, but they are the best guesses given the evidence. There has recently been evidence showing a rare Y-haplotype in extreme souther India to one found in Australian Aborigines.
The supposition is that the wave of hunter gatherers that reached Australia did so by following the coast of the Indian Ocean eastward from Africa. They would have left behind relatives along the way. The Dravidians probably then brought farming and animal husbandry into India much more recently, largely interbreeding with and simply displacing the indigenous tribal peoples. Then the Indo-Aryan wave entered following the same path, conquering the north with superior war technology, namely horses and chariots. The Mitanni people of the Fertile Crescent are poorly known, but they spoke an Indo-Aryan language, and used horses in war.
There's no linguistic or direct genetic link between the Dravidians and the SE Asians that I am aware of (but the science advances so rapidly I may be wrong on the genetics). Skin color evolves rapidly and is subject to biological convergence. The greater Malayo-Indonesian area is subject to a huge influence from the west, with the introduction of Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism all coming in waves. One would expect intermixture has been going on for millennia. But I suspect that rather than Indonesia that the Dravdians' original closer relatives were from the Indus valley and the Middle East μηδείς (talk) 19:37, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Is desi too specific? -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 11:45, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Good find User:JackofOz, it appears to be an endonym used by Indo-Aryans, unfortunately the article isn't clear about whether the term includes Dravidian peoples or not. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 12:47, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
It's a funny one. I remember once asking my partner, a Sri Lankan immigrant to Australia, about this word, but it meant nothing to him. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 12:53, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
It should not be confused with Desi Arnaz.
Wavelength (talk) 15:04, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
And all these years I've taken you for a nerd par excellence (not a bad thing), without the slightest hint of a sense of humour. Thanks for sharing this hitherto unsuspected aspect of yourself, Wavelength. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 20:58, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

related question[edit]

This isn't what was asked by the OP above... but are their common pejorative terms for people from the sub-continent? Blueboar (talk) 16:16, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

See List of ethnic slurs, particularly under P and W. The latter term (but not, unfortunately, the attitude behind it) is rather old-fashioned in the UK. Tevildo (talk) 16:48, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Playing sasa[edit]

In a West African context, what is "sasa", and what does it mean that someone is "playing sasa"? It's clearly not Sasa (dance), seemingly not Sasa (plant), and definitely not Solvent-accessible surface area. In 1988, Liberia issued a stamp captioned "Sasa Players" (image), and I can't figure out what's going on. The catalogue is unhelpful; it says only "Sasa Players" as well. Nyttend (talk) 22:37, 20 September 2014 (UTC)

I'm wondering whether "sasa" is a variety spelling of sansa/sanza/sanzu, a type of thumb piano (see also mbira). ---Sluzzelin talk 22:52, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
Does this help? It appears to be a Liberian percussion instrument, possibly a pot full of stones/beads in a string bag. Fiddlersmouth (talk) 23:53, 20 September 2014 (UTC)
"A percussion instrument with a loud, sharp sound. Made from a gourd covered in a net of beads". From Cracking the Code: The Confused Traveler's Guide to Liberian English. [5] AndyTheGrump (talk) 01:33, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Now I really feel silly — I work for IU Digital Libraries, and I'm in the middle of setting up an online image collection that (when finished) will be available through Image Collections Online. I never thought to look in our own online documentation!!! Thank you for finding that, and Andy, thanks for bringing up this book. My only textbook of Liberian English is Warren d'Azavedo's Some Terms from Liberian Speech, and I don't remember ever seeing this book or anything else like it. Nyttend (talk) 03:42, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

September 21[edit]

Christians in Iraq and Syria[edit]

Are there any Christians left in either Iraq or Syria? -- (talk) 14:11, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Yes, sure. Syria used to have about 10% Christians in the population. Iraq has less by percentage, but a larger base. See Christianity in Iraq. ISIS is a bunch of assholes, but I neither do they control all of Iraq and Syria, nor do they operate organised death-or-conversion camps. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:27, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Although the mainly Christian city of Qaraqosh, which is regarded as Iraq's "Christian capital" has been overrun and a large proportion of the population have fled into Kurdish territory according to BBC News - Iraq Christians flee as Islamic State takes Qaraqosh. Alansplodge (talk) 16:15, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Yes, but that's still in Iraq, and for political reasons, it's quite likely that it won't become a recognised state in the foreseeable future. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 17:02, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

British (most likely) coat of arms identification[edit]

Looking to work out what a coat of arms that I've seen represents. I don't have a picture of it, I'm afraid. It's most likely British, and given context most likely represents a city/region/county. The background is green. The central figure is a large cross bottony in gold, with in each of the quarters made by the large central cross a smaller cross pattée in gold as well. Any ideas? (talk) 16:58, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Royal Arms of Edward the Confessor
Nothing immediately obvious at List of British flags. The arms of Edward the Confessor (see image), perhaps? The colours are wrong, though. Tevildo (talk) 17:48, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Arms of Abingdon
Got it! It's the coat of arms of Abingdon-on-Thames. (See image). Cross patonce rather than bottony according to the blazon, but the Abingdon cross doesn't look very much like our reference image. Tevildo (talk) 22:13, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Daughtes of Tsars[edit]

Why did most of the daughters of Russian Tsars traditionally remain unmarried until the Petrine reforms?--The Emperor's New Spy (talk) 17:18, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Well, if you look at the sisters and half-sisters of Peter the Great, (you can find the list at Alexis_of_Russia#Family_and_children, most of them got caught up in the wrong side of the various intrigues in Russia leading up to the rise of Peter the Great; i.e. most sided with Sophia in the Moscow Uprising of 1682. As a result, when Peter took power many of them were shipped off to convents or otherwise barred from Marriage. The one sister that remained loyal to Peter, Natalya, appears to have been close enough to him to have remained unmarried so as to remain at Court rather than be married off for diplomatic purposes, which would have been the fate of other royal females. Peter's grandfather, Michael Romanov had many daughters, but only three lived to adulthood: Irina, Anna, and Tatiana. Wikipedia only has an article about Irina, who (like Natalya and Peter) seems to have been the "head of the household" during Michael's reign, and as such, was kept unmarried to keep her around the court. Prior to Michael Romanov was the Time of Troubles, when things were a bit confused regarding the Tsarship; a variety of pretenders and foreign princes claimed the title, but in reality, no one held widespread control of the country. Prior to the Time of Troubles, Boris Godunov had one daughter, Xenia. Boris tried TWICE to marry her off, but the first engagement was broken off, and the second was ended by her fiancees death. After that, she got caught up in the Troubles, and never married; she seems to have lived a rather unfortunately life being raped and imprisoned. Before Boris, Feodor I of Russia only had one daughter, and she died at age 1: [6]. Before Feodor was Ivan the Terrible, the first Tsar. Ivan had a large number of wives and children, but from our list in the Wikipedia article, it appears Ivan the Terrible had no daughters to marry off; they all died before reaching marriageble age. So, the answer to your question is there was no such tradition. In the entire list of Tsars from the first Tsar to Peter the Great, there aren't that many daughters to establish a "tradition". At least one was engaged to be married twice, two others were kept at court because they were close to their brother, who wanted them around rather than married off to a foreign prince or some important Boyar, the rest of the ones that lived to adulthood ended up on the wrong side of a rebellion or political intrigue, and all the rest (the majority of Tsarevnas indeed) died before they reached marriagable age. If there's any tradition to be garnered from this, it would appear to be the tradition of dying as an infant. --Jayron32 17:53, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

September 22[edit]