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Conflict Resolution – The Psychology of Conflict

30 Oct

In an article in the Sydney Morning Herald by Peter Hartcher

http://www.smh.com.au/comment/the-one-bright-spot-amid-the-worlds-problems-20171023-gz67gh.html

I found the following about Sharia law:

” . . . an international group of psychologists interviewed some 80 men who had fought with or lived under Daesh and published their conclusions last month in the journal Nature Human Behaviour.Daesh, they said, “has imbued a generation of young Sunni Arabs with a strict belief in Sharia law as the only way to govern society; and this is a value they are willing to fight and die for. They described strict Sharia as the only way to eliminate oppression and corruption, and many believe that ISIS’s foreign fighters truly fought for this.” Unless governments can show their people a better way to wipe out oppression and corruption, the appeal of Islamist extremism will live on.”

To my mind the key words were “oppression  and corruption”.  I googled these two words and ended up reading this article:

http://www.beyondintractability.org/essay/oppression-power

“Overcoming Oppression with Power” was the heading. It was interesting what was said about Nelson Mandela’s  strategies. Some very interesting, mind boggling details were mentioned. The article was written by Morton Deutsch.  Here is what it says about Morton Deutsch’s work in the field of conflict resolution.

http://www.beyondintractability.org/contributors/morton-deutsch

“Morton Deutsch is one of the founding fathers of the field of conflict resolution, specializing in the psychology of conflict. Currently Professor Deutsch is the E.L. Thorndike Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. He founded and is still active in Columbia’s International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution. He is the author of countless articles and books, including the 1973 Resolution of Conflict, which is still in use today.”

All this shows me that in academia people know so much about such subjects like “oppression and corruption” as well as conflict resolutions.

Why is it that most people are not much aware of that knowledge? Should not at least the people in power be made aware of all that knowledge?

Jonathan Franzen’s ‘Purity’

12 Feb

 

I googled today some reviews of this book.
The links to the two reviews at the top I publish to show how much two reviews about the same book can actually differ.

My thoughts on reading this book:

I am now more than halfway through Jonathan Franzen’s “Purity”.
I would agree that for me this book is not all that easy one to read. There are pages with a lot of information which at times I find rather difficult to digest and remember. However I can sense that all the information provided shows a lot about our modern world and how people in it are affected. Other sections in the book are very easy to read and show, how complicated ordinary lives can become in our modern world. I like being able to read parts of the book for a few hours in one go. Making it possible to read for an extended time, the book seems to be getting more and more interesting. I can’t wait to find out more about its characters!

Uta’s Diary, Tuesday, 12th April 2016

12 Apr

http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/abc-qa-germaine-greer-slams-claim-extreme-jealousy-causes-domestic-violence-20160412-go3xri.html

This link is about last night’s Q&A program. This program is on late at night, a bit too late for Peter and myself.  We decided we’re going to watch it  today. Luckily Peter could record this program.

I am very much looking forward to watch it, especially with Germaine Greer in the panel. Apparently there is some talk about domestic violence. For sure, there would have to be said a lot about this subject!

 

http://www.amazon.com/Heads-Tails-Winner-Blended-Australian-ebook/dp/B00O7UJ2PI/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1460411770&sr=1-2&refinements=p_27%3ABronwyn+Vanzino

Heads or Tails: Being a Winner in the Blended Australian FamilyKindle Edition

Kindle Edition

Here follows what Kindle says about this novel:

“Novel about a young koori man finding his identity in the emerging multiculturalism of Australia in the 1980s. The storyline focuses on a fictitious young koori policeman, James Finley (Fin). A born leader, Fin tries to help a man wrongly imprisoned. Anger at injustice threatens to devour him in the case and in his unusual personal life. He battles with finding his place in the early multiculturalism of Australia during the 1980s, when many want to use him for their own purposes. Fin finds he has to personally change to succeed in relationships and learns that the road to reconciliation is not as straightforward as many tell him it is, but he believes he can discover success and happiness – on his own terms – and has to learn to play by the rules in the pursuit of justice.”

I have read this novel on KindleI would like to have the paperback. However it seems not to be available any more. This novel was dealing with very interesting subjects. What is said about Fin in the above write up says it very well: This young koori man “has to learn to play by the rules in the pursuit of justice.”  

This novel is of course fictional. But I would like very much that more people in our society were concerned about the pursuit of justice. This koori policeman is a good example how multiculturalism can work in our society. The book shows how it can be quite a struggle for some people to find out about themselves and where they fit in. This does not only apply to indigenous people but also to migrants from different cultures.

Last but not least, here is a link to a blog with some excellent photos about cooking:

https://42weimar42.wordpress.com/

 

 

Charlotte Amalie

7 Feb

THE MARRIAGE OF OPPOSITES BY ALICE HOFFMAN

All the following pieces are copies from various Google articles.
In this book with the title “Marriage of Opposites” Alice Hoffman says in her afterword, that Rachel Pizzarro’s life in her imagined story mirrors the known facts about Rachel as closely as possible.
I reckon it is very rewarding to find out more about the historical background of the book’s characters by googling for some more information. Right in the beginning of Hoffman’s book Rachel says that she rarely did as she was told. Out of all the numerous children that Rachel had, Jacobo Camille, the artist, is by far the most interesting. I would say this novel is extremely well written and that it is based on historical facts makes it all the more interesting.

The story is set on the Island of St. Thomas and in Paris. Charlotte Amalie is the place where Rachel and her family lived. Here are some facts about Charlotte Amalie:

“Charlotte Amalie (/ˈʃɑːrlət əˈmɑːljə/ or /-ˈæməliː/), located on St. Thomas, is the capital and largest city of the U.S. Virgin Islands, founded in 1666 as Taphus (meaning “beer houses” or “beer halls”[1]). In 1691, the town was renamed to Amalienborg (in English Charlotte Amalie) after Charlotte Amalie of Hesse-Kassel (1650–1714), queen consort to King Christian V of Denmark. It has a deep-water harbor that was once a haven for pirates and is now one of the busiest ports of call for cruise ships in the Caribbean, with about 1.5 million cruise ship passengers landing there in 2004. Protected by Hassel Island, the harbor has docking and fueling facilities, machine shops, and shipyards and was a U.S. submarine base until 1966. The town has been inhabited for centuries. When Christopher Columbus came here in 1493, the area was inhabited by Island Caribs and Taíno. It is on the southern shore at the head of Saint Thomas Harbor. In 2010 the city had a population of 18,481,[2][3] which makes it the largest city in the Virgin Islands Archipelago. Hundreds of ferries and yachts pass through town each week, and at times the population more than doubles.
The city is known for its Danish colonial architecture, building structure and history, and a dozen streets and places throughout the city have Danish names. Charlotte Amalie has buildings of historical importance including St. Thomas Synagogue, the second-oldest synagogue in the Western Hemisphere,[4] and the oldest Lutheran church in the Western Hemisphere, the Frederick Lutheran Church. The town has a long history of pirates, especially stories of Bluebeard and Blackbeard (Edward Teach). In the 17th century, the Danes built both Blackbeard’s Castle and Bluebeard’s Castle attributed to the pirates. Blackbeard’s Castle is a U.S. National Historic Landmark. Another tourist attraction is Fort Christian, the oldest standing structure in the Virgin Islands Archipelago. A copy of the Liberty Bell is in Emancipation Park, which is a tourist attraction.

The city was named Charlotte Amalie in honor of Charlotte Amalie of Hesse-Kassel in 1691”

I also found the following about THE DANISH WEST INDIES:

“The Danish West Indies (Danish: Dansk Vestindien) or Danish Antilles was a Danish colony in the Caribbean, consisting of the islands of Saint Thomas with 43 square miles (110 km2); Saint John with 42 square miles (110 km2); and Saint Croix with 100 square miles (260 km2). The Danish West India Guinea Company annexed the uninhabited island of Saint Thomas in 1672 and St. John in 1675. In 1733, Saint Croix was purchased from the French West India Company. When the Company went bankrupt in 1755, the King of Denmark-Norway assumed direct control of the three islands. The Danish West Indies was occupied by Britain in 1802–1803 and 1807–1815, during the Napoleonic Wars.
The intention of Danish colonization in the West Indies was to exploit the profitable triangular trade, involving the exportation of firearms and other manufactured goods to Africa in exchange for slaves who were then transported to the Caribbean to staff the sugar plantations. The final stage of the triangle was the exportation of cargo of sugar and rum to Denmark. The economy of the Danish West Indies was dependent on slavery. After a rebellion, slavery was officially abolished in 1848, leading to the near economic collapse of the plantations.
In 1852, the sale of the increasingly unprofitable colony was first debated in the Danish parliament. Denmark tried several times to sell or exchange the Danish West Indies in the late 19th and early 19th century, to the United States and the German Empire respectively. The islands were eventually sold for 25 million dollars to the United States, which took over the administration on 31 March 1917, renaming the islands the United States Virgin Islands.”

The Synagogue on the Island of Saint Thomas is mentioned frequently in Hoffman’s novel. Here is some more background about this synagogue:

“Saint Thomas Synagogue was built in 1833, and is the second-oldest synagogue on United States soil (after the 1763 Touro Synagogue in Newport, Rhode Island). It also has the longest history of continuous use by a Jewish congregation in the nation. It was built for a congregation founded in 1796 by Sephardic Jews who had come to the Caribbean Basin to finance trade between Europe and the New World.[1]
Features[edit]

The synagogue as a number of distinctive and unique features. Most of the wooden features including the benches, the ark and the bimah are made from mahogany. The menorah dates back to the 11th century and is Spanish in origin. The chandeliers are European and are presumed Dutch. There are four pillars inside representing Sarah, Rachel, Rebecca and Leah, the four matriarchs of the Jewish people. But by far the most unusual feature of the synagogue is the sand floor. There are two theories behind this unusual occurrence. One is to represent the Israelite journey through the desert. Another theory is that it represents the Conversos who were forced to convert to Catholicism. Many continued to observe Judaism, so they usually met in their cellars and would use sand to muffle their prayers.
The congregation is affiliated with the Reform Jewish movement and the rabbi is a graduate of Hebrew Union College.

Here now a synopsis written I think by Tom Morrison:
ALICE HOFFMAN
“The Marriage of Opposites”

“Growing up on the idyllic island of St Thomas in the early 1800s, Rachel dreams of faraway Paris.
Her mother, a pillar of their tight-knit refugee community of Jews who escaped the European Inquisition, has never forgiven her daughter for refusing to live by the rules.
But Rachel’s fate is not in her own hands: in order to secure the future of her father’s business, she is married off to a widower with three children.
When her husband dies suddenly and his handsome nephew Frederic arrives from France to settle the estate, Rachel seizes control of her life, beginning a passionate love affair that sparks a scandal affecting her entire family, including her favourite son, Camille Pissarro, who will one day become a founder member of the Impressionists and one of history’s greatest artists.

Set in a world of lush, exquisite beauty, THE MARRIAGE OF OPPOSITES shows Alive Hoffman at the height of her considerable powers. The marriage of Rachel and Frederic is an unforgettable story of an extraordinary women and her forbidden love, from the internationally bestselling author of THE DOVEKEEPERS.”

Beautiful, harrowing . . .
A major contribution to twenty-first-century literature’
Tom Morrison, for The Dovekeepers

Jodi Picoult says: “Hoffman reminds us with every sentence that words have the power to transport us to alternate worlds, to heal a broken heart, and to tie us irrevocably to the people we love.”

Synopsis

Alice Hoffman’s compelling tale of the artist Camille Pissarro and his mother

By Wendy Smith August 4, 2015

https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/alice-hoffmans-compelling-tale-of-the-artist-camille-pissarro-and-his-mother/2015/08/04/86534d92-37fa-11e5-9739-170df8af8eb9_story.html