Although it has been shown that immersive virtual reality can be used to induce illusions of ownership over a virtual body , information on whether this changes implicit interpersonal attitudes is meager. Here we demonstrate that embodiment of light-skinned participants in a dark-skinned VB significantly reduced implicit racial bias against dark-skinned people, in contrast to embodiment in light-skinned, purple-skinned or with no VB. 60 females participated in this between-groups experiment, with a VB substituting their own, with full-body visuomotor synchrony, reflected (...) also in a virtual mirror. A racial Implicit Association Test was administered at least three days prior to the experiment, and immediately after the IVR exposure. The change from pre- to post-experience IAT scores suggests that the dark-skinned embodied condition decreased implicit racial bias more than the other conditions. Thus, embodiment may change negative interpersonal attitudes and thus represent a powerful tool for exploring such fundamental psychological and societal phenomena. (shrink)
Although the Neo-Darwin Theory of Evolution is one of the most celebrated theories in science, nonetheless it has received many criticisms. These criticisms are documented and a new transdisciplinary theory of origin is introduced. Darwin's original argument was that natural selection, through heritable changes, changed simple organisms over time. These heritable changes are responsible for the complex plethora of life seen around us today. Darwin's original theory, however, was deconstructed after the fact into a mutation-based theory. This mutation-based theory in (...) its current form is an insufficient and indeed unnecessary transdisciplinary explanation. A subsequent statistical comparison between the six extant scientifically based primary theories of origin was undertaken and based on current biological knowledge a statistically significantly best fit phenotypic model emerged. (shrink)
Tabitha and Cornelius, imaginary persons based on characters in Acts, occupy two different places in the first-century Mediterranean world. In hearing Luke's gospel-story, how would each construe the figure of Jesus? The social location of each would play a crucial role as each "builds" the character of Jesus in dialogue with Luke's story.
continent. 1.2 (2011): 145-147. Here I accoutred myself in my new habiliments; and, having em- ployed the same precautions as before, retired from my lodging at a time least exposed to observation. It is unnecessary to des- cribe the particulars of my new equipage; suffice it to say, that one of my cares was to discolour my complexion, and give it the dun and sallow hue which is in most instances characteristic of the tribe to which I assumed to belong; (...) and that when my metamorphosis was finished, I could not, upon the strictest ex- amination, conceive that any one could have traced out the per- son of Caleb Williams in this new disguise. William Godwin Caleb Williams (352). Giorgio Agamben. Nudities . Trans. David Kishik and Stefan Pedatella. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2011. 144 pp. | 10 illustrations. | ISBN: 9780804769501 | $16.95 A. The Protective Overcoat. The most pervasive, resilient, robust, sneaky, and significant concept in all of Giorgio Agamben’s essays is that of separation. This is not the same as alienation. Separation is more nostalgic, for Agamben valorizes an ancient world in which human society and its beings were not subject to such separation. He implies that these separations are damaging to human beings, crippling them at the very level of their identities. $4.99 B. The Handsome Gloves. Giorgio Agamben’s Nudities , like Profanations before it, employs a wide range of subjects in order to establish separation as a metaphor, in much the same way that interdisciplinary scholars have adopted Michel Foucault’s concepts in order to rethink societies and texts. The longest essay from Profanations, entitled “In Praise of Profanation,” laments humankind’s inability to profane as the result of what Walter Benjamin has called “the capitalist religion.” Likewise, “Nudity” adopts a pessimistic stance on the Christian theological tradition’s perverse asphyxiation of the unclothed body. $2.50 C. The Hoop Earrings. Religion separates humans from things by procuring for itself items as “sacred,” thus taking them out of common use. In this state, human beings are unable to play with them, unable to change their use-value. They become off-limits, museified. $1,499.00 D. The Uncomfortable Shoes. Biometrics polices identity, replacing meaningful metrics of identity. It is a deplorable situation that leaves human beings in danger of, and indeed already victims of, mass persecution. $111.75 E. The Prince Albert. One could characterize Giorgio Agamben’s desire to catalogue a history of ignorance as a recognition that human beings are separated from knowledge by language. Where then is the prophet, and how shall we be saved? $49.50 + tip F. The Corset. Franz Kafka’s character of Joseph K. has put himself on trial, as in Roman trials when the Kalumniator was marked with the letter K. The torture he undergoes is meant to elicit a confession of the truth. It is possible that Giorgio Agamben perceives his role as a philosopher to be confined to self-trial, and that with every passage he flays the unclothed page with prophetic intent. $27.00 G. The Derby. Giorgio Agamben himself tries to bridge various separations through exploratory play. He is not a performative writer semantically, but his exploratory style is rooted in the play spirit. His strategy of numbering points is almost comical, yet it is not misleading. It is play, after all, not ruse. He denudes with pecks, like carrion on a tattered corpse. $11.00 H. The Trousers. Although Giorgio Agamben is elsewhere concerned with the profanation of religion’s apparatuses, in essay nine he would like to consider what is consumed during days of inoperativity, how religion governs these, and how to account for our binges and purges. Inoperativity is inextricably bound to feasting, to the festival. $24.50 I. The Stylish Belt. The only essay in Nudities to contain photographs is the essay entitled, “Nudity.” All of these photographs project human bodies. $.01 I The aim here is not to tap into an original state prior to the separation but to comprehend and neutralize the apparatus that produced this separation. (66) II The contemporary is he who firmly holds his gaze on his own time so as to perceive not its light but rather its darkness. (13) III We can therefore only experience nudity as a denudation and a baring, never as a form and a stable possession. (65) IV Just as genius and talent originally distinct and even opposite—are nevertheless united in the work of the poet, so the work of creation and the work of salvation, inasmuch as they represent the two powers of a single God, remain in some way secretly conjoined. (6) V In our culture, the face-body relationship is marked by a fundamental asymmetry, in that our faces remain for the most part naked, while our bodies are normally covered. (88) VI Every man initiates a slanderous trial against himself. (21) VII The glorious body is not some other body, more agile and beautiful, more luminous and spiritual; it is the body itself, at the moment when inoperativity removes the spell from it and opens it up to a new possible common use. (103) VIII As Kleist understood so well, the relationship with a zone of nonknowledge is a dance. (114) IX The deactivation of this apparatus retroactively operates, therefore, as much on nature as on grace, as much on nudity as on clothing, liberating them from their theological signature. (90) X At any rate, whether festive inoperativity precedes religion or results from the profanation of its apparatuses, what is essential here is a dimension of praxis in which simple, quotidian human activities are neither negated nor abolished but suspended and rendered inoperative in order to be exhibited, as such, in a festive manner. (112) XI This is just how much [of] the land [the] surveyor is allowed to catch a glimpse. (36). (shrink)
"Neusner moves beyond the interpretation of individual texts to grasp as wholes two systems of Judaism, that of the Mishnah and that represented by Rabbinic documents of the fifth century. He thus provides an entirely fresh approach and a new answer to the central question 'What is Judaism?' At the same time, by providing a sound model for the evaluation and comparison of diverse religious systems, this book has an important place within the study of the history of religions in (...) general."--Alan J. Avery-Peck, author of The Talmud of the Land of Israel: Shebiit An eminent scholar of the history of Judaism, Jacob Neusner shows in this work how Judaism changed from a philosophy to a religion between 200 and 400 C.E. The Transformation of Judaism is a work both revolutionary in its method and unprecedented in its results. Comparing earlier and later sets of Judaic writings, Neusner sets forth how philosophy--abstract, elegant, orderly, and intellectual--turned into religion--tangible, down-to-earth, chaotic, and concrete. In the process, he offers an account of the birth of Judaism that has become normative. Moreover, Neusner's methodology can be applied to the study of religions other than Judaism because it examines the underpinnings of how a society sees the world (philosophy), orders itself (politics), and sustains itself (economics). "This prolific author provides in this book yet another of his clear and scholarly explorations into the nature of Judaism... Scholarly detail does not preclude clarity of style and more general reflection on the character of religion in relation to other modes of thought."--Peter Byrne, Religious Studies. (shrink)
This study set out to investigate the influence of male circumcision and other factors on sexually transmitted infections in Botswana. A syndromic approach, which diagnoses a sexually transmitted infection based on the presence of urethral discharge or genital ulcers rather than on laboratory tests, was used. The data were from the 2001 Botswana AIDS Impact Survey where a nationally representative, randomly selected sample of men and women aged 1064 years who had ever had sexual intercourse. The logistic regression technique was (...) executed to examine the association between male circumcision and self-reported urethral discharge or genital ulcers, while controlling for all other independent variables in the analysis. The main finding of this study was that among men who are circumcised, the odds for self-reported urethral discharge or genital ulcers are significantly lower than for those men who are not circumcised in both urban and rural Botswana. The analysis also showed that the odds in favour of self-reported urethral discharge or genital ulcers, for men who drink alcohol, are twice as large as those for men who do not drink alcohol, controlling for all other independent variables in the analysis. Religion and ethnicity also came through as factors exerting a protective influence against self-reported symptoms of sexually transmitted infections. The conclusion is that while male circumcision appears to be significantly associated with the risk for self-reported urethral discharge or genital ulcers, it is man’s behaviour, irrespective of ethnicity or religious dictates, that continues to play a vital role in protection against self-reported symptoms of sexually transmitted infections in Botswana. (shrink)