Category: History

 

US Workforce Trends In Diversity

 


Introduction

Workplace diversity is an aspect of the similarities and differences of the various employees of a given organization. Various dimensions which influence the identities of workers are dependent on the profession of an individual, their education, cultural background and geographical location. Diversity trends have shifted greatly in the recent past especially with the emergence of multicultural organizations which are global. One of the countries which have been greatly affected by workforce diversity is the United States which has experienced workforce diversity in a variety of dimensions especially with the increased immigrants to the country.   


 Discussion

The number of young individuals from the minority groups in the United States workforce is increasing each and every day. This has been quite significant as a result of the larger workforce population which is made up of more white reaching retirement age in large numbers. The ethnic minority are exceptionally investing a lot in education such that most of them possess considerable professional qualifications as compared to whites. This is attributed to the fact that there are more non-white people in the United States than in countries such as Japan which have majority of its workforce being native Japans. Alternatively, the declining older generation of United States whites in the workforce could be due to the fact that the ethnic minorities are reluctant to go back to their home countries after achieving the desired educational qualifications. On the other hand, Japanese younger generations who undertake their studies abroad always find their way back to their homeland.


Hence, the majority of individuals in the Japanese workforce are made up of native of all age groups (The national Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, 2005).  The other dimension is the level of professionalism among the U.S. younger generation such that the trends show that they are less competent when it comes to globally positioned jobs. The younger working generation in the U.S. is more at home with a college diploma or degree with very few possessing higher qualifications or a combination of college degrees. Some countries such as Canada have quite a larger population attaining more than an associate degree with most aiming at achieving even higher academic qualifications. This makes them more competent and better positioned to handle more technical jobs which require advanced expertise as compared to their U.S. counterparts. The fact that most of the people in the workforce are not aspiring to further their education may dampen the spirits of any single individual who has been aspiring to carry out post-graduate studies.


This could be blamed on the fact that the level of education in addition to quality has not been modified to suit the young working professionals in the U.S (The national Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, 2005).   The trend of income of individuals in the U.S workforce has been declining over the years due to a decrease in the national tax base. The current global economic crisis is equally to blame for the reduced income although it was global; the US was greatly affected due to low levels of academic qualifications such that the normal income of the individual is low. In countries such as China, the income has been increasing over the years even with economic problems due to reduced national tax bases (The national Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, 2005).  


 References

The national Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, (2005), income of US                        workforce projected to decline if education does not improve. Retrieved from:                        www.highereducation.org/reports/pa/decline.  


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Peasants In Art During The Late 19th Century

 


Introduction

The nineteenth centurywas characterized by intense changes and developments in Russian art scenes especially among peasant artistes who comprised a majority of the entire Russian population.  The century was also the time when the real RussianSchool of Art was established. This was further boosted by the domination of the art scene by European art and style in the eighteenth century. Emergence of the Russian art gave way to new interpretive approaches different from the western standards which people were used to in the earlier days. The development of Russian art was based on three artistic trends namely; romanticism, ideological realism and Slavic revival. During Napoleon’s time, France underwent drastic changes in terms of their artistic work which led to the emergence of romanticism which replaced classicism.


 

 Discussion

            Peasant artists in Russia

Early in the nineteenth century, the Russians who were engaged in artistic work shared so much with their counterparts in the other European countries. This is attributed to that fact that most Russian artists were conversant with techniques and skills which were common among the European artistes. However, after the emergence of romanticism more emphasis was credited to self-portraits of individuals as well as those of important historical activities. A renewed interest was also developed in the immediate environment such that more artistic work was based on Russian physical features rather than those of European countries.


This move was aimed at increasing the amount of naturalistic work in addition to idealism while at the same time reducing art which was based on classicism. It was only in the mid-nineteenth century when the aspect of reality began to have effects on the entire art scene (Prokhorov, 1995).As time went by an ideal cohesive Russian styles was developed by a versatile painter referred to as Karl Briullov who carried out his artistic work on canvas. This was the turning point for Russian wanderers who embraced the new style which allowed a more naturalistic and nationalistic approach to art. Subsequent generations were able to grasp the technicalities of the Russian style more easily such that the western approach was gradually erased from the scene.


Ideally this increased the national spirit which had been initially neglected by being referred to as an inferior branch of art. One of the pioneer artistes who were involved in peasant artistic work was Aleksei Venetsianov whose work comprised more of the Russian heritage than any other artiste. Consequently, most of the artistic work of this period was generally composed of the naturalistic or idealistic aspects of the Russian peasants (Ross, 2009).One of the major paintings of the nineteenth century was Kramskoi’s religious painting of Christ in the wilderness which was a combination of a photographic impression culminated by an uncertain mystery. The impression that was portrayed by the painting was more of a myth than a true artiste’s impression of the ideology.


This portrait was a contradiction of popular Russian traditional beliefs. This was a form of ideological realism whereby people were being encouraged to adopt new ways of thinking by relating the past and the present. As time went by, the social criticism that had been initiated by the ideology diminished and more artistes developed a renewed interest on the historical aspects of the Russians.  Some artistes went ahead and developed a new model of realism by incorporating the negative comments of Russians with the realistic ideologies. Social realism is a style used in realistic art to depict the goals of a society or community similarly, it glorifies the roles of the poor hence it was popular among the peasants.


It was developed under the socialism and is a teleological-oriented style which should never be confused with social realism which depicts issues of social concern (Boguslawski, 2005).  Ideally an artiste would create a portrait of a clergy preaching to the faithful to surrender their worldly possessions to those who lacked various items. However, the peasant artists portrayed the clergy in normal human activities such as playing cards in the company of young girls. This is against the traditional beliefs of the Russians but it created a lot of popularity for the artists rather than if they had painted the clergy conducting a normal sermon. The controversy created by the art was thus responsible for increased popularity because the Russians were being exposed to things which they were previously not used to seeing.


This aspect of bringing out the natural features of individuals by exposing social ills was fundamental in shaping art during the nineteenth century. It was also a way of making real the dreams and fantasies which were harbored by the peasants concerning various arenas of life (Ross, 2009).Artistic work which presented the normal daily activities of human beings such as scenes showing men, women their children and animals in the farm would attract less attention. Things which are normal would not appeal the Russians but introduction of fictious portraits depicting peasants in palaces were more appealing to the art lovers hence increased popularity. Contradicting events which included the participation of nature and its components were seen as more popular because of their uniqueness thus raising more criticism.


This is exhibited in the way in which an artiste could not ideally portray life in the same eyes he saw it especially as the socialist idealism dictated that anything that portrayed the community negatively be omitted in any work of art. Consequently, people the characters who were incorporated in any artistic work had to undergo some intense examination such that individuals of questionable a character could not be used as part of the cast (Boguslawski, 2005).The socialist ideology stated that painters must depict peasants who worked in factories and farms as happy and muscular. Though the working conditions in those areas were oppressing or horrible, it was equally compulsory that the artist ignored the negative part and laid more emphasis on the positive part.  


The sole purpose of the art was to elevate the peasant worker by presenting his/her life, work and recreation as being admirable this way an entirely new type of human beings who are content   with life was created (Prokhorov, 1995).Uplifting stories were the order of each artistic work while landscapes showed the success of the government and not its failure. All artistes who were currently in the field in the nineteenth century had an obligation of adhering to doctrines that had been set up by society which was meant to produce unfettered art. These guidelines were meant to maintain creativity as well as censor artistic expressions. However, this led to lowering of the quality of socialist realism work as the creativity of most artists was hampered by the strict rules (Ross, 2009).


 References

Boguslawski, Alexander, Russian Paintings. 2005. Retrieved from:             ww.englishrussia.com/?p=274 –

Prokhorov, Gleb. Art under Socialist Realism: Soviet Painting, 1930-1950. East      Roseville, NSW, Australia: Craftsman House; G + B Arts International, 1995

Ross, Fred, 19th century art chronicled real life. (2009) Epoch.


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Race and Ethnic Relations

 


 Introduction

It is important to note that over time, the U.S has come to be one of the most ethnically as well as racially diverse countries in the world. In this regard, the most commonly recognized races include African Americans, Asians, American Indians as well as the White.


 A discussion

The information about ethnicity as well as race that has helped me better understand as well as relate to specific minority groups includes the histories as well as historic trends regarding these groups. That is, after five centuries of immigration, the 21st century US has come to be racially as well as ethnically diverse. Further, an understanding of the various familial, economic, religious as well as social and religious conventions as well as statuses has made me understand as well as relate to Hispanic groups better.


 It is important to note that as far as my cultural history is concerned, I have leant volumes of information regarding the same. More specifically, I have learnt of the past events that informed my culture as well as the cultural practices, ceremonies as well as activities that make my culture unique.


 As a result of immigration trends, the US face continues to change as well as adjust going forward. According to Marger (2008), the majority of the population shall be made up of Hispanic Whites.  This essentially means that the non-Hispanic whites shall be in the minority.With this projection in mind, the country must come up with measures aimed at preparing for this changing race as well as ethnicity pattern. One way to do this could be through embracing diversity and eliminating discrimination of any kind and dimension.


 Conclusion

In conclusion, it is important to note that the changing race as well as ethnicity equation of the US calls is a reality. It is hence prudent for all individuals to embrace diversity through an enhanced understanding of each others customs as well as practices for a start. 


 References

Marger. M.A. (2008), Race and Ethnic Relations; American and Global Perspectives,

Cengage Learning


 

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Hispanic Groups

 


 Introduction

It is important to note that when it comes to Hispanic groups in the U.S, they tend to diverse in an ethnic sense as opposed to a racial sense when compared to the Native Americans. Over time, we have had a substantial improvement in the visibility of Hispanic groups both at the economic as well as political front and this is a significant deviation from the past. In this text, I discuss four Hispanic groups living in the United States and identify their linguistic, political, familial, religious, economic as well as social conventions.


 Puerto Ricans

Cafferty et al. (2002) notes that a majority of Puerto Ricans can fluently speak English. This is in addition to Spanish. It is important to however note that there are sometimes gaping differences between the Spanish that is widely spoken and the Puerto Ricans Spanish when one takes into consideration a number of aspects including the accent. When we consider their political statuses, the Jones Act which was signed by President Woodrow Wilson allowed the Puerto Ricans to acquire citizenship (American) and as a result, their participation in the electoral process is guaranteed. It is also important to note that as far as social conventions are concerned, the fluency in English exhibited by the Puerto Ricans facilitates their interactions with Native Americans. On the economic front, it can be noted that Puerto Ricans are largely conservative. Their ability to access equal employment opportunities as a result of the Jones Act signing has not made a huge impact on their economic wellbeing. It can also be noted that Roman Catholicism is the religion of choice amongst Puerto Ricans but we still have a substantial chunk of protestant Puerto Ricans (16%). As far as family is concerned, Puerto Rican families are headed by the father. Puerto Ricans also happen to exhibit laudable links with other members of the family happening to be in the 2nd or 3rd generation.


 Mexican Americans

  Spanish is the Mexican Americans main language. It is important to also note that indigenous languages are also spoken by a substantial chunk of Mexican Americans. However, as Robertson (2009) notes, there seems to be a sustained decrease in the number of Mexican Americans fluent in indigenous languages going forward. As far as politics is concerned, Mexican Americans still play a big role in politics (electoral) if the census enumerations are anything to go by. With regard to social conventions, $ Robertson (2009) notes that the interaction (social) between Mexican Americans and native Americans is at times impacted negatively by language barriers. Issues are also not helped further with claims of Mexican American discrimination by their American counterparts.


 When considering Mexican American’s economic prowess, it has been noted that their lack of exposure to education that can be considered quality impacts negatively on their economic capability. This is essentially because when it comes to employment opportunities, they happen to be at a disadvantaged position economically as opposed to other Hispanic groups as well as Native Americans. Cafferty et al. (2002) notes that Roman Catholicism is the religion of choice amongst a majority of Mexican Americans. However, there is also a substantial chunk of those who subscribe to different religious aspirations i.e. Jehovah witnesses. At the familial front, this Hispanic group is largely family oriented. While the mother is concerned with the coordination of familial matters, the father retains his position as the head of the family.


 Colombians

English forms the language of choice for a big chunk of Colombian Americans. However, there is still a minority chunk of those who are not fluent as far as English is concerned. At the political front, Robertson (2009) notes that Colombian Americans are not interested in elective politics as is the case with other Hispanic groups. At the social front, the ability of Colombian Americans to inter-relate well with their native American counterparts is founded on their social and jovial nature. Their preference for song and dance especially vallenato as well as salsa has also over the years cemented their interrelation with each other.


 At the economic front, 90% of Cuban Americans are considered to be economically stable. Indeed, more than 50% of Colombian Americans own homes according to Cafferty et al. (2002) and this can be seen to be a higher percentage than any other Hispanic group. Further, it is important to note that Colombian Americans make more money in dollar terms as compared to their Hispanic counterparts.


Religion still remains to be central to the Colombian Americans with a majority being Roman Catholics. As far as family is concerned, it is important to note that the father and mother in a Colombian American household play equal roles as far as the family well being is concerned. However, the role of the father is still central as far as decision making is concerned.


 Cubans

Spanish still remains to be the Cuban Americans main language. According to Robertson (2009), Cuban Americans participation in politics (elective) most notably in Miami has been growing over time and it is expected that before long, the effects of Cuban Americans in national politics shall be largely felt going forward. On the social front, Cuban Americans are perhaps the only Hispanics group that maintains the closest relations between each other. However, apart from their excellent relations with each other, their relations with Native Americans still remain strong and solid. It can also be noted that a majority of Cuban Americans in the U.S. today still have powerful relations with their home country. On the economic front, Cuban Americans can be said to be better off as compared to other Hispanic groups. According to Robertson (2009), by dint of having been in the US longer than other Hispanic groupings, Cuban Americans have stellar education which aids them in the pursuance of their economic interests. Roman Catholicism is the religion of choice for most Cuban Americans with a slim minority subscribing to other religions.According to Cafferty et al. (2002), the fact that a majority of Cuban Americans in the U.S. today still have powerful relations with their home country informs their closeness at the familial level where the father is the family’s head.


 Conclusion

Despite the fact that quite a number of Hispanic groups still pledge their allegiance to their cultures as well as homelands, they have over time integrated well within the American culture. It is also important to note that though they differ on a number of fronts, the various Hispanic groups also share some common characteristics as well as conventions.


 References

Cafferty, P.S, & Engstrom, D.W. (2002), Hispanics in the United States; an agenda for the twenty-first century, Transaction Publishers

Robertson, W.S. (2009), Hispanic-American Relations with the United States, BiblioBazaar. LLC


 

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The Iraq War

 


 Introduction

The contemporary political life can well be accounted for using thinking and fundamental insights of various ideas within the public sphere.  The dialogic exchange understanding and the theories of structuralism proponents can help us get meaning of various current happening is in modern day society. When the Iraqi war started in March 20, 2003 on the directions of the then U.S. President George W. Bush, many analysts were of the opinion that it would not last more than five years.  However, the war took more years than what every individual had expected and 7 years later; casualties, from both sides, and an escalating cost continue to be reported. It is estimated that annually, a total of $1.2 trillion is spent by nations in the world on war. With this in mind, a detailed examination of contemporary wars is not only important but it can also at times be largely instructive. In this text, I give a detailed examination of the Iraqi war from the perspective of the conflict theory, Durkhemian theory as well as the rational utilitarian theory.


 The Iraqi war: an overview

The Iraqi war was informed by the U.S.A and Iraqi conflict. It started in the year 2003 when Iraqi was officially invaded by American forces backed by other coalition forces and this was within the backdrop of a number of justifications for the same. The U.S.A claimed that Iraqi president was in the process of acquiring or had already acquired WMD or what is popularly referred to as weapons of mass destruction. The regime of the Iraqi president was also accused of among other things being sympathetic to organized terrorist groups.


 The invasion phase went on fairly well amidst casualties from both sides and it is after this phases that the coalition forces came in to assist the country to put in place a working transitional government amongst other things. However, Iraqi rebel launched an insurgency against the coalition forces that has been so far difficult to quell due to its use of guerilla warfare tactics.


 The Iraqi war from a conflict theory perspective

It is important to note that when it comes to a social group, there is usually an identifiable material, political as well as social inequality. This inequality can be viewed or taken to analyze the wider system as far as the socio-politics is concerned. This is the gist of the conflict theory.Mooney et al. (2008) states that the conflict theory could be taken to view the world as a field where inequality thrives. This inequality is the one that can be said to inform as well as influence change and conflict. The theory looks at how distinct classes vouch for the obviously scarce resources. The theory also displays the world as an inequality arena where the same is brought out in several fronts including but not limited to race, gender as well as class.


 One way to examine the Iraqi war from the conflict theory perspective would be first by identifying the role of ideology as far as the conflict is concerned. Ideology according to this theory includes any false consciousness. An ideology in this case could be a belief that the ruling classes rely on for support and the working class believe in. It has been noted over time that ideology is in a large way supported or promoted in one way or the other by the mass media such as radio or television.


If we critically review the media role during the Iraqi war period, the assertion above seems to hold water. Mooney et al. (2008) notes that during the Iraqi war, we had crews from television stations covering the war as it unfolded. This is in fact the first war that was widely covered by the media with entire media crews traveling with coalition forces to cover the unfolding events. It is important to note that initially, a big chunk of media outlets who in most instances reported that the war was advancing in a rapid pace supported the war. In the recent times, it has emerged that this outlets were keen to cover or distort the number of civilian casualties while only concentrating on Iraqi forces casualties. This distortion of information fed a majority of Americans with misconceptions with regard to the war and soon, opinion polls showed that a large majority of Americans supported the Iraqi war. These misconceptions were in a majority of cases relative to where a particular individual sourced the news. Fox news viewers were believed to represent the highest rate of misconceptions with regard to the war. Overall, it was found out that most people’s support for the war at the time was correlated to their beliefs far as these misconceptions were concerned. From the social conflict perspective, this scenario presents a situation where a belief that favors and in which the ruling class nourishes and is in that regard relied upon by the lower class constituents. In this case, the bush administration is the ruling class while the country’s television viewers represent the lower classes.


 Another way to view the Iraqi war in the conflict theory perspective includes a detailed look at those who were involved i.e. those who fought in the military. To highlight as well as raise some important queries as regards those who supposedly take up the military, we had a highly publicized quote in the year 2006 in which while addressing some college students he happened to tell, them that if they did not take their college work i.e. their studies seriously, they would end up “stuck in Iraq.” While this comment was regarded in some quarters as unfortunate, it did raise some specific queries as to who serves in the military. The tendency of the society to rank people in a hierarchy at the societal level is called social stratification.


According to the conflict theory, societal stratification inevitably ends up favoring some people at the expense of others. The theory seems to advance that those individuals fro the upper classes have higher chances of succeeding given that they are ushered into this world with a wide range of opportunities at their disposal as opposed to their lower class counterparts. It has been noted that a vast majority of soldiers who died in Iraq were from impoverished towns. When we look at this fact from the point of view of the conflict theory, one feels that social stratification is a reality. That is, it is a sad confirmation that the military stratification ends up benefiting those in the ruling class at the expense of those people as well as individuals coming from the impoverished parts of the United States.


 The Iraq War from Durkhemian Theory Perspective

The Durkhemian theory claims that the life in a given society is in a way ritualized and the social life is lived as a collective moralized conscience.  Also the world according to the theorist is profane and sacred and provides an action that is wellspring.When it comes to the ultimate decision the U.S made to invade Iraqi, quite a number of analytical perspectives can be examined. This includes but is not in any way limited to elite interests, cultural, social and psychological, realism as well as liberalism motivations. David Emile Durkhemian was a French sociologist. He used the psychological point of view to interpret the social life.  He is well known for his structural functionalism which forms the foundation of his anthropological and anthropological perspective (Collins, 1994, pp 23). To help us interpret the Iraqi war from the Durkhemian Theory Perspective, I come up with a discussion of the Durkheim’s theories whilst taking into consideration the Iraqi war.


 1] Social Solidarities

On his perspective of crime, he saw as a relation of various social tensions which have a purging and clashing effect to the society. Social solidarity are formed with the creation of labor division.  This is mainly for economic development of individuals in among people in the society. To prevent conflict, well set terms should be placed describing the responsibilities of each party for the common interest of all. For a durable relation, states in the world see it necessary to develop conditions that support cooperation.  This can be well exemplified in the requirement of Iraq to adhere to the requirements of the United Nations to disarm and abandon its Weapons of Mass Destruction MD program. 


  Apart from the chemical weapons processed by Iraq, the country’s President Saddam Hussein was accused of supporting and harboring al-Qaeda (Weekly standard, 2003). Other reasons for invading Iraq was its abuse of human rights and US effort to campaign for Iraq being a democratic county.


This shows that the United Nation body as expected duties and rules to be followed by all the nations of the world. But when nations refused to perform its expected duties it leads to difficulty and conflicts.  This is because interest’s solidarity is well supported by division of labor. The refusal of Iraq to end its nuclear, biological, and chemical technologies meant going against its duties. The US resolved to force Iraq in April 1991 to abandon the program of WMD and the country was to be regularly inspected and destroy its stockpiles. International teams were given this responsibility. Iraq at first allowed the role of the international teams to inspect its stock but later denied the access for inspectors and made restrictive condition on where and when a place would be inspected. The then President Clinton considered the necessary use of force to Iraq to adhere to the UN expectations.


An Emile Durkheim idea of structural-functionalism applies to this scenario.  The theorist was concerned on how societies maintain survival means for them to survive. He examines the social stability and cohesion by use of the solidarity concept. In a primitive society, individuals perform similar tasks leading to mechanical solidarity which holds this society united.  Such a primitive society has a tendency of being segmentary; with common and shared values. In complex modern societies, individuals perform different takes which leads to strong interdependence. This  means  that  the sustainability of the whole is  dependent  on  the  reliance of an individual  to  make up  the  organism. This forms organic solidarity leading to social equilibrium. Subject a state can be the US, the UK and other developed countries.  They know that peace is important for the general stability and equilibrium.


 Durkheim also talks of the society at a micro-level in which individuals perform interaction rituals which moves the society to solidarity.  Such rituals are the unconscious and emotional aspects which define the interaction of human beings in a given society.  The US bombing of the September 11 is an example of a social ritual triggered by social psychology. By studying the fundamental culture of Iraq and its people, we can understand the Islamic fundamentalism of the group of the al-Qaeda.  The attack of the US had a devastating effect of American people and has continued to impact on the lives of the Americans. The suicide bombing depicts conflict between cultures and individual minds. Mohamed spoke of Jihad who were either lesser or greater.  The lesser jihad is to protect the Islam religion from its enemies while the greater jihad is struggles from the temptations that one would face. Turning away from one’s temptations is difficult which the suicide bombers led by Osama bin Laden turned away from.


  The attack of the US by the extremists Islamists is the attack of a land of unabashed greed and unveiled women.  The terrorist’s argument is for righteousness and moralism which is an inner battle. The world’s Super Power in this case is a threat with its resources and culture to Iraq.  Hence, America became vulnerable to the attack due to its wealth and its liberal culture.


            The terrorist attack of US on September 11, 2001 became evident that more Clear defined roles had to be put in place to prevent future terrorism and to prevent Iraq’s WMD program.  This shows Durkheim’s’ tradition that it is necessary to take up obligations which were not there before to foster cooperation of varying parties.


 2. Division of labor

Conceptualization is given societies which are different often leaded to conflict.  This conflict reflects how a society is complex in nature but not competing.  The  integration of  conceptions  are needed at a given  time in a given society  for  the  sake  of  creating mutual  understanding  and  complementary  of ideas. However, competitions leads to estranged and isolated individual and leads to parties growing further apart, but the division of labor brings unity among members of a given society who share the spirit of solidarity. Countries which have extreme density of its population, leads its inhabitants to temporarily and permanently residing in other countries. There is always no clear demarcation for division of labor and what needs to be done is to constantly communicate. This is because social life is always wrong and there is need of judicial laws to make things in order.


 The Durkhemian theory on division of labor can well be exemplified in the Iraq war. In the countries quest to define its position in the world and fulfill its social needs and sentiments, it went outside the whole division of labor based on the community’s sentiments and beliefs.  Its failure to cooperate to international laws depicts the country’s hunger to define and place its position in the world.  There is nothing like autonomous individuals according to Durkheim because people are pre programmed to be submissive to social rules living to perform a pre determined function.  This forms the social and moral life of individuals in a given society. This forms the moral sentiments among the Iraq community.  The individuals are solitary to cooperate in aspects that define the moral and truth of their lives.


 [3] Individual & Collective Life

Iraq is a smaller society than the US. Iraq places everyone at the same condition and in a collective environment.  The same character represents the consciousness of the people and is related to the things that are within their environment.  Large societies on the other hand are spread over a surface that is vast. The United States of America is a vast society and many general things are not common in the diverse environment. Individuality is replaced by a collective consciousness in a small society like Iraq. Seen in the bumbling of the US, we can view the collective consciousness of the terrorists to sacrifice their lives to fulfill the collective thought of the Iraq society.  Iraq which is mainly an Islamic community believes in Jihad which is concept that states that for one to go to heaven you most kill and sacrifice your life. This is a form of a social defined ritual or a totem which holds the people of Iraq together and an aspect which define them. Just like any other lower society, Iraq has predetermined way of living which has well set details of how people culture such as dressing, eating, and language to be followed by the people. 


             A civilized society like the US has the tendency to be logical and rational. This society is constantly affected by primitive societies with their bizarre, and fortuitous of their heterogeneous elements. Every society transforms the characteristics nature of individuals.  This is why the deferring of the Iraqis and the US supported by the UK and other nations had conflicted over the differing view points leading to the Iraq war.   In the understanding of individuals and societies aspects such as social density, interpretation rituals and degree, and social capital are examined.


 [4] Rituals & Fundamental Symbols

In the past decade, aspects of secularism verses modernity have been witnessed.  Religion has played a central role in influencing powerful political mobilization.  The  aim  of  religion is  to ravage its  marginalization seen in the past in  the  whole worlds   and in the US  as a powerful  democracy  of  western liberal. The divine mind of a people in a given society is the power that controls them. Islam religion came under great controversies especially after the 9/11 attack carried out by radical Islamic al-Qaeda organization. This shows how religion has the power to make people submit to its rules and conducts even when they are contrary to fundamental instincts and inclinations.  This is a form of social pressure that influences   men to carry out actions outside themselves. A ritual is carried out in societies with extremely high social density and in primitive tribes with taboos which define their political and religious rituals.  This is exemplified in Iraq’s bomb attack of the US that triggered the war.


Terrorism against the US is not a conflict of world views but a conflict of how individuals view themselves.  From the terrorist’s point of view, they see America subject to destruction by their own andocentric religion and culture for them to make their identity known to the rest of the world. The ideas of the jihads are a social culture that has far reaching implications on civilizations, societies and culture. This is a ritual which we can question on the basis of how one can give up his life to reach a noble cause which is a supreme form of personal sacrifice to make.


 The Iraq war from a rational utilitarian theory perspective

In the 17th century, Thomas Aquinas developed the ‘Just war’ doctrine utilized in the rational Utilitarian theory. This principle sets out the regulative and prescriptive process on how war should be fought. This principle has been adapted in the Geneva Convection International laws of war which states that a State has the power to initiate war whenever human safety is at risk.   The Geneva conception has international law of war requires   justifiable reasons on why a country declares wars on another.  This can be well examined in Iraq war and the rational choices made by the UK and the US for the attack (Winfield, 2004, 67). It is important to note that the rational utilitarian theory in criminology adopts a rational choice in stating that man has the power to reason and weigh the ends and means, the benefit and cost, and to make choices that are rational. The rational utilitarian theory is a result of previous experiments which investigates the nature of human beings.  Data for these experiments were gathered from behavioral techniques. The concept of rational choice is the center of Rational Utilitarian theory which can be applied in the Iraq vs. US war. Utilitarian premises produce rational choice in making interpretation of social experiences.  These concepts can be traced back in to the ancient doctrine of Jus ad bellum which means ‘just war’ in Latin Language.  This doctrine gives the power for individuals to choose what is best to the society and what is best to each individual in the society. This ancient theory can be applied in modern social events that the society has experienced.


 One of the social events that this theory can be applied is the Iraq war which called the US government to take actions through rational decisions of weighing what is best to the society and good for world peace. The fight of US government against Iraq came after organizations and parties making decision based on their empirical knowledge on what best suits the society and man.  This is the doctrine of paternalism in the making of rational choices when undertaking a practice. Jus ad bellum is a law war which governs the conduct of war and that war should be done justly.  Jus ad bellum is the criteria utilized by the United States government before going to war with Iraq.  This criterion is the making of rational choices in deciding whether the war is justifiable. This concept is rooted from the premises of rationale utilitarian theory.


            The United Nation body for inspection monitoring and Verification commission conducted a search for the mass destructive weapons in Iraq. The country was ordered to disarm but failed to adhere to the requirements (Blip, 2003) claiming that there was no evidence that it had nuclear weapons.  The invasion of Iraq led to the capture of Hussein the Iraq president.  He was executed by the Iraq government after being tried in the country’s court of law.  This led to the emergence of the al- Qaeda and the strife of the Muslims groups the Shia and the Sunni. Millions of Iraqi populations were left homeless, children orphaned and displaced after the Iraqi insurgency. Many Iranians were left to rely on low quality source of water that was insufficient the humanitarians. 


             The suffering of the people in Iraq as well as the attack of the UnitedState’s Eastern seaboard with chemical and biological triggered the declaration of Iraq war.  Further evidence to the UN Security council indicated that Iraq WMD program to attack the US.            The Rational utilitarian theory is clearly evident with Hans Blix, the Chief weapon inspector remark that Iraq appeared not to be genuine on the issue of disarmament which it was called upon to.  The Iraq country according to Blix had to be forced to disarm so that the world lives in peace and have the confidence (Blix, 2003).  This means that by weighing the benefits of attacking Iraq verses not attacking it, then the world would not be confident that Iraq had no deadly weapons. The country was also criticized for being sympathetic towards militia and terrorists groups (Morgan, 2000, 25).


 The invasion phase went on fairly well amidst casualties from both sides and it is after this phases that the coalition forces came in to assist the country to put in place a working transitional government amongst other things. However, Iraqis rebel launched an insurgency against the coalition forces that has been so far difficult to quell due to its use of guerilla warfare tactics.


  The attack of Iraq saw a shift of UnitedState’s foreign policy from a framework that majored on human security to multilateralism with the adoption of the jus ad bellum just war. The September, 11 2002 attack led to the creation of new strategies in securing modernity and the people of the world.  This was mainly emphasized by the then US president George W Bush. Iraq’s suspension of having deadly weapons and the rumors of attacking the US were enough aspects to declare war on Iraq.  The rational choice to attack Iraq was based on human good and for the sake of peace and security to all people in the society (Price, 2001, pp 45). 


This choice by the United States was part of its foreign policy of enhancing international laws of system of preventing enemy countries from using mass destructive weapons which threatens human safety. In preparation of to fight against terrorism and stop rogue states, the US had no option but to first attack Iraq before it used the destructive weapons or threaten the US and its allies (National Security Strategy, pp 14).  Such a move to do so can be interpreted in the ‘just war’ domain to avoid the reoccurrences of what was experienced in September, 11, 2001.


   The protection of a country’s sovereignty can also be seen in the decision to invade Iraq.  To protect the US sovereignty, the US and its allies had no option but to declare war on Iraq. Conflict against Iraq was the last resort that the US and its allies would do to protect people around the globe and America’s sovereignty (Leiss, 2003, pp 232).


 Conclusion

As noted in the introductory paragraph, a whooping $1.2 trillion is spent on war on an annual basis all over the world. This hence calls for a sober examination of contemporary wars. It is with the examination of such wars that social perspectives can be invoked to interpret the same. Hence in the same breath, sociological perspectives can be used in interpreting the Iraq war. With that in mind, the examination of the Iraqi war military social stratification as well as ideology in the light of the dependency theory can also bring to the fore the social conflict theory as well as its various insights. Similarly, given that the social contexts are informed by social sciences, the Durkhemian theory comes in as a vital piece as far as explaining socio demographic, economic, historical and social concerns and characteristics provided by the Iraq war are concerned. The text above also avails the ethical standards and the measurement of the expected consequences after the war as per the utilitarian theory perspective.


 References

Blix, H. (March 7, 2003) “Transcript of Blix’s U.N. presentation” CNN.  Retrieved from

http://edition.cnn.com/2003/US/03/07/sprj.irq.un.transcript.blix/index.html

On October 12, 2010

Collins, R (1994) four sociological traditions Edition2, PublisherOxfordUniversity

Press, pp 23

Leiss, W (2003). “The Risks of Policy Choices: The War in Iraq and the Doctrine of Pre-Emption.”  Policy Options. Institute for Research on Public Policy, pp 232.

Mooney, L.A., Knox, D., & Schacht, C. (2008). Understanding Social Problems.

Cengage Learning

Morgan, R (2000). “The utilitarian justification of torture.” in Punishment & Society, Vol. 2(2): 181- 196. SAGE Publications: London, pp 25

Price, R (2001) “Is It Right to Respond with Military Attacks?” Australian National University Department of International Relations Keynotes, pp 45

Weekly standard (2003) Saddam’s al Qaeda Connection. Retrieved from

http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/ On November 1st 2010

Winfield, D (2004). “Why International Law Supports the Invasion of Iraq: A Short History on UN Declarations of War.” Policy Options. Institute for Research on Public Policy, pp 67


 

Janet Peter is the author and is associated with meldaresearch.com which is a global custom dissertation writers provider. If you would like help in essays, research papers, term papers and dissertations, you can visit MeldaResearch.Com

Iraq

Iraq


Iraq government can be described as a corrupt, miserable and paralyzed country, whose interim government was formed by a coalition led by the United States in the April, 2004. The United Sates government was in charge of Iraq over the period when the country had not yet conducted its elections. Eight months later, around January, 2005, Iraq formed a government after conducting a general election. The United States led coalition government handed the governance powers to the leader government formed after the general elections. It is however clear that although the United Sates handed the power to the Iraq government there is still a lot which can be termed as a threat to the entire community of Iraq population (Katzman and Prados, 2003).


 Although the general elections marked an official change from the dictatorship leadership of Saddam to a form of leadership that had different ideologies Iraq has several problems with its people. When we look at the issue of the medical and health care, a lot has been left out which contribute to the welfare of the society. The entire Iraq has a poor modern facilities of health care and although the government said it will look at that, little is done to ensure that the society is getting the right medication. The conflict which is ever in Iraq does not allow the place to experience medical growth which means that services which the society is getting and will continue to get are of poor quality. Since the elected leaders have made themselves rich from corrupt things, they are able to get medication from outside and thus they do not care about their people.


 Katzman (2003) postulated that, the Iraqi people were ignorant and had no idea on how to go about the voting process. Moreover, majority of them did not know the people to elect for the various leadership positions. Since money is the talk of the day in Iraq, the government which comprises of those who are rich has put some regulations which govern the issue of holding some money in their accounts. No one is allowed to hold more than 10,000 USD which means that this is a threat to the future of the people of Iraq. On the same not the government does not give outsiders citizenship even though one might have married or being married within the country.


 The post-war or new Iraqi government has not benefited the Iraqi people in any observable way since people continue to be miserable. The government is driven by selfish and greedy leaders who are only there for self-gain. These leaders do not serve the citizens who elected them into the government positions that they selfishly hold. There has been political and economical instability and the new government is putting no effort to improve the situation. On the same note Iraq got no commercial air operating service to the UK and other countries meaning that the population continues to have problems in connecting to other countries (Katzman, 2003).


 In conclusion, it is clear that Iraq elections were not the key solution to solving the country’s miserable and paralyzed situation. It instead worsened the situation since citizens were left miserable and non-catered for by the new government. Moreover, money is whet determines the amount of power that one possesses, in that the most powerful people are the richest people in Iraq.


 Reference

Katzman, K., & Prados, A. B. (2003). Iraq; Issues, bibliography and historical background. Cengage Learning.


 

Decolonization of the British Empire after the Second World War

Decolonization of the British Empire after the Second World War


Introduction

Prior to the World War II, the British Empire had established a number of colonies outside Europe such which were disengaged from Britain following the war though there were other factors which lead to the decolonization of the British Empire. In order to pursue the aims of the essay the decline of the British economy will be discussed, then the upsurge of anti imperialist movements will be examined and the emergence of Soviet Union and USA as superpowers will be analyzed as well. Decolonization was not a mechanical consequence of the Second World War, but a long term ongoing process such that other factors should be also considered.


 Discussion

The origin of the British Empire

The British Empire was founded at the time when England and Scotland were separate entities. At the time when King Henry VII of England was ruling, a voyage was sent to discover the route to Asia via North Atlantic which was unsuccessful and no colony was established. Similarly, that was the last attempt by the English to establish colonies on the American soil. This was later on reviewed during the reign of Elizabeth I when Spanish Catholics and the Protestants in England had failed in their friendly relations. Such that war was inevitable as England engaged in subsequent raiding attacks on African towns and Portuguese ships in the west coast pf Africa. The war was extended to the American ports where the Spanish-owned ports were raided by the Britons and the looted treasure from the newly acquired land moved to England. The English writers were also pushed forward the concept of establishing a “British Empire” just like the other colonizers (Smith, 1998).


 Events during the first British empire  

The British Empire was subject to a number of rivalry and hostility problems which were directed to it by other empires at that time. In the period between 1587 and 1584, the British Empire was able to acquire two colonies in America namely the harbor of Newfoundland and the coast of Roanoke. However, the full control of the colonies was not successful as in the first instant there were no settlers in Newfoundland to colonize and in the later colony the supplies were limited hence complete colonization failed (Macdonald, 1994).


 The subsequent failure of the British Empire led to negotiations to reduced hostility with Spain and at the same time England shifted its raids from previous preying on other country’s colonies into establishing its own overseas colonies (Marshall, 1996).


 The 17th century was a success for the British Empire with English settlement in the smaller islands of North America as well as development of private companies which were delegated to administer the overseas colonies and its trade. However, another loss was in the making with the loss of 13 colonies following the American War of Independence in the later years of the 18th century. Subsequent colonization aspects in Africa and other parts of the world also failed primarily due to poorly laid out strategies such that the British Empire was seeking colonies without a prior research on the resultant value of the effort. Similarly, the East India Company in Asia also failed terribly in its implementation of proper policies in India such that in the 19th century there was a serious famine in India due to crop failure and very many lives were lost hence reducing the powers of the British Empire over the colony (Tilby, 2009).


 By the time the British Empire was entering into the 20th century, there were fears that it would not be able to defend the entirety of the empire while sustaining the policy of splendid isolation. This was largely attributed to the fact that Germany was rapidly transforming into a military and industrial power hence a most probable opponent in nay future wars. This was the point at which the British Empire became allies with old enemies such as France, Japan and Russia so as to fight against the Germany army (Porter, 1998).


 Decline of the British economy

The economy of the British Empire started to dwindle before the Second World War such that previously the empire had engaged in numerous unplanned wars and explorations which failed to yield much returns.  However, the downfall was felt from the beginning of the Great European War in 1914 due to the increased international armament manufacturers and the megalomaniac Kaiser which were fleecing the empire. The prices of the weapons were so high that by the end of 1917 the British Empire had begun to borrow money trough political compromises in order to fund the war (Tilby, 2009).


 

The level of bankruptcy was so high that the Russians used the opportunity to establish the Russian revolution funded by New York to finish off the British Empire. This was followed by the United States of America making its appearance in the European War and since then the USA has held an unrivaled dominance in the world affairs. The poor state of financial affairs reduced the capacity of the British Empire to gain strong foothold on the colonies hence decolonization was inevitable as a result of the bankrupt situation (Turpin and Tomkins, 2007).


 Upsurge of anti imperialist movements

Anti-colonial movements were slowly increasing since the very first time the British Empire obtained its first colony. The situation was made even more complex following the Cold War which led to the United States and the Soviet Union engaging in heated rivalry. As both nations had been opposing the European colonialism the American anti-communism was more prevalent over the anti-imperialism in the European country. Meanwhile Britain adopted a policy which stated that it would peacefully disengage from its colonies once non-communist governments were formed and stabilized (Smith, 1998).


 The anti-imperialist movements had been threatening the activities of world colonists which had been growing increasingly among the European colonial empires. Later on the movements were joined together such that the colonies and their ideas were converged to reduce the rate of decolonization in the British Empire. The other aspect of anti-imperialist movements is that they were very much opposed to the globalization trend which was seen as an economic dominance and thus it is an indirect colonization of the less developed countries (Fieldhouse, 1999).


 Whilst there are various versions of the dynamics of the Second World War there is consensus over the logic of imperialism. After the 1929 crisis, the most profound the capitalist system has yet experienced, Germany, Japan, Italy and to a lesser extent Britain and USA looked towards dismissing laissez faire principles and creating their own protected trade areas (Latimer, 2007).


 Emergence of the US and Soviet Union superpowers

The Soviet Union was very much against the effects of the colonial powers such as the west in terms of the political leadership influence and the financial support. Therefore, to counteract the activities of the colonizers such as the British Empire, the Soviet Union organized scores of revolutions so as to shake the colonizers out of their colonies. As the Cold War progressed, the Soviet Union made changes on the imperialist view at the height of capitalism where stratification of society according to class was evident. The attempt of the Soviet Union to help inhabitants in the British Empire colonies made the oppressed people warm up to the Soviet Union and at the same time popularity of the union increased. Similarly, many conflicts during the cold war were generated by such superpowers that extended support to the warring nations or empires hence increasing their fame in the global scale (Hollowell, 1992).


 The United States at one point sought the assistance of the British Navy to protect its soil from being colonized by other countries. During this time the United States shifted its interests into trade by opening new markets in other areas while economically and politically the country was doing equally well. Following the civil war the United States, embarked on strategies to recover previously colonized land such that it regained most of the original land (Rothermund, 2006).

The United States also backed up Egypt to fight the British and at some point the then president of the United States President Eisenhower threatened to sell United States reserves of the British pound a move that would result in precipitation of the British currency. This was being carried out as a way of forcing the British Empire to give up the Suez Canal. The intervention of the United Nations and the United States led to the most humiliating surrender of the British Empire of the Suez Canal. This was the only time when Britain was exposed to the public expression of the limited and reduced world stage such that subsequent activities should have to be supported by the United States as it had managed to topple Britain in the global standing. The aftermath of the British encounter in the Suez Canal wounded the pride of Britain to an extent that it withdrew from Suez Canal and from the public activities thus giving way to the emergence of the United States as a superpower (Louis, 2006).


 The Second World War and decolonization of the British Empire

There is much debate amongst historians on the impact of the Second World War on the British Empire. For example, there is a claim that prior to World War II, the fall of British Empire was unexpected. Other historians maintain that far from being in decline, British Empire was revitalized during the war and in the post-war reconstruction. According to recent research, without the effects of the Second World War, decolonization would have taken much longer (Wong, 1982). Historians also disagree on the emphasis that should be placed on the different agencies such as the argument that Britain left the colonies only after being defeated by anti- imperialist and anti-colonialist national movements whereas others claim that the anti imperialist resistance played no role. There are other scholars who ascertain that decolonization was a product of imperial policy in order to avoid confrontation with the “genuine national desire” (Levine, 2007).


 In this essay it has been argued that decolonization was not a mechanical and inevitable result of the Second World War. The conflict, by limiting material capabilities and jeopardizing the prestige of Britain, had a negative impact on the empire. Nevertheless, the successful orchestration of colonial war efforts indicated that Britain still had a global role to play (Rothermund, 2006).All the same, the 1939-45 activated other mechanisms that transformed the context of the British Empire and undermined its long-term survival. The emergence of US and Soviet Union as super powers and their pressures on the British Empire; the rise of revolutionary anti-imperialism nationalism in the 1940s and 1950s and the declining economic importance of the so called “ third world should be considered to explain the phenomenon of decolonization (Turpin, 2007).


 Similarly, even if the Second World War had not taken place in history, the decolonization of the British Empire would have taken place as it had already begun way before the World War II. The events preceding the war played a greater role such that the 

war was only a platform through which every piece of the jigsaw fell into place. Consequently, following the various issues which befell the British Empire in its quest for colonies, the eventuality of decolonization was inevitable (Proudman, 2008).


 Conclusion

The British Empire decolonization was not as a result of the Second World War but rather as a result of many continuous processes such as bankruptcy and upsurge of anti-imperialist movements which derailed the colonization processes of the British Empire.  Therefore, regardless of the timing of the Second World War, the British Empire would have been subjected to decolonization later but the war helped to speed up the process.


 References

Fieldhouse, David Kenneth (1999). The West and the Third World: trade, colonialism, dependence, and development. Blackwell Publishing

Hollowell, Jonathan (1992). Britain Since 1945. Blackwell Publishing

Latimer, Jon (2007). War with America. Harvard University Press

Levine, Philippa (2007). The British Empire: Sunrise to Sunset. Pearson Education Limited

Louis, Wm. Roger (2006). Ends of British Imperialism: The Scramble for Empire, Suez and Decolonization. I. B. Tauris

Macdonald, Barrie (1994). “Britain”. In Howe, K.R.; Kiste, Robert C.; Lal, Brij V. Tides of history: the Pacific Islands in the twentieth century. University of Hawaii Press

Marshall, PJ (1996). The Cambridge Illustrated History of the British Empire. Cambridge University Press

Porter, Andrew (1998). The Nineteenth Century, The Oxford History of the British Empire Volume III. Oxford University Press

Proudman, Mark F.. “Words for Scholars: The Semantics of ‘Imperialism'”. Journal of the Historical Society, September 2008, Vol. 8 Issue 3, p395-433

Rothermund, Dietmar (2006). The Routledge companion to decolonization. Routledge

Smith, Simon (1998). British Imperialism 1750–1970. Cambridge University Press

Tilby, A. Wyatt (2009). British India 1600–1828. BiblioLife

Turpin, Colin and Tomkins, Adam (2007). British government and the constitution (6th ed.). Cambridge University Press

Wong, Kwok Chu. (1982).”The Jones Bills 1912-16: A Reappraisal of Filipino Views on Independence,” Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 13(2): 252-269


 

Devastating Experiences of War

Devastating Experiences of War


                         “Here, Bullet” is a poem that attempt to bring out the picture of what happens during war. The poem is written by Brian Turner, who expresses was a soldier in the war at Iraq and writes the poem from his experience from the war. The poem communicates major themes such as death, blood, ghost, despair and fear among other. These themes can be generalized as the devastating effect of war. The film “the Hurt Locker”, directed by Kathryn Bigelow, also revolves around the war in Iraq. It features the star actor James (Jeremy Rinner) who is a bomb expert deployed in Iraq. The poem portrays the issue of wars with a somber mood as compared to the film Hunt Locker which addresses the issues of war as a daily pleasure.


                       “Here, Bullet” is witness poem where the speaker expresses his personal experiences as well as those of other soldiers and local Iraqis during the Iraq war. Most Americans enjoy peace, protection and stability and are usually oblivious of the sacrifices that some patriots have to make in order to guarantee these things. The poem by Brain Turner has collected images and tries to communicate the real scenes behind war that are rarely communicated in news. Statements such as; “Elsewhere a dying Soldier has “just enough blood / to cough up and drown in”, paints to as the ordeal that soldiers have to undergo during war.


                     One major theme that is the Turner brings out is the Theme of fear. The speaker contemplates death through a bullet and hence the title “here, bullet”. The poem begins that “If a body is what you want, / then is here is bone and gristle and fresh”. This tells us the fear that soldiers have to put up with knowing that their lives can come to a dramatic end at anytime. Through out the poem turner forces us to experience terror that soldiers on the ground experience during such wars. The poem gives accounts of terrific scenes such as; “you hear the RPG (Rocket Propelled Grenade) coming for you/ Not so the roadside bomb”. Such a statement indicates that during war soldiers are faced with expected and unexpected threats and have to always remain prepared for any of these. There are threats that you will see/ hear them coming (Rocket Propelled Grenade) while there are other you will not be aware of such as the roadside bombs. The film some how has the opposite effect.  


                    Another major theme brought out by this poem is the feeling of despair brought about by war. Turner gives accounts of situation where soldiers and local appear to give to fates as situation overwhelms them. In the cover of his book Turner talks of a soldier who commits suicide when he could no longer hold the pressures brought about by this war. The opening statement “If a body is what you want, / then is here is bone and gristle and fresh” is a sign of resignation by the speaker who seem to leave his chances to fate. In another sentence the speakers seems to admit to what sounds like a death wish; “I dare you to finish what you started”. On the part of the local, turner narrates how when looking for enemies they encounter local women and children. It is this statement that turner uses “women with breasts swollen with milk” who is essentially “… dressing the dead, clothing them / as they wait in silence,” that shows the state of desperation among the local Iraqis. “Here, Bullet” there many other lines in the poems that brings out the state of despair that is brought out by war. Unlike in the poem, the actors in the films seem pleased with the action at the ground.   


                    Death and blood is another theme is clearly portrayed through this poem. Turner gives a disturbing picture of how many people, both soldiers and locals, lost their lives through the Iraqi war. Turner paints a picture of wide spread blood shed during the war through line such as these; “Elsewhere a dying Soldier has “just enough blood / to cough up and drown in”.


                    Turner also gives accounts of deaths as a result of the war and the grief that come with them. The poem expresses how dreams and experiences are shattered by these deaths brought about by wars. A line such as; In “Autopsy,” a dead Soldier’s heart is weighed by a mortuary affairs specialist who wonders how fast that heart once beat on the occasion of the Soldier’s first kiss” show how moments are shattered by immediate deaths brought by wars. The poem also provides a clear description of the damaging effect that the war has on the Human body.The speaker describes that as the bullet strikes its target of a body, its crazed and determined speed “puncture[s]” that body of “heat and blood.”


                   The poem also brings out the theme of “the otherness” that exists during war situation. Despite both groups (the Iraqis and Soldiers) suffering from the effects of the war, each group view the other as one that deserve to suffer and that they are suffering innocently. Turner revisits some terrible paradoxes as in “The Al Harishma Weapons Market,” where “an American death puts food on the table, / more cash than most men earn in an entire year.” This shows how the spirit of the otherness exists during war. The value of human life is not respected just because you come from the other group. Individual mourn the dead of one in their “own” group while they celebrate the death of “the others”. Turner expresses his sentiment that no matter the war situation one should delight in taking another person life. Still, in “Sadiq,” “no matter what adrenaline / feeds the muscle its courage,/ … it should break your heart to kill.”     


                    To effectively communicate the themes of the poem, Turner has used various poetic techniques. One of them is personification. The statement “If a body is what you want, / then is here is bone and gristle and fresh” personify the bullet. The bullet is an object and can claim to want anything but in this poem the bullet is given human character. The human body is at the same time dehumanized to express the feeling that exists during war time. The first statement, the speaker refers to has own body as having gristle, a tissue that is usually present in animals and not humans. The speaker further personifies the bullet by his statements “Here is the adrenaline rush you crave”. The use of this style shows how weapons are assigned great importance during wars and human lives trivialized.


                  The speaker proceeds to challenge the bullet and take control of the situation; “And I dare you to finish / what you’ve started.” / here I complete the word you bring”. Through this statement the speaker shows how a soldier has to respond to the harsh situation at war in order to survive. “Here I complete the word you bring” is meant to mean that the speaker is ready to challenge the bullet using the same force that the bullet is coming with. The next line “my tongue’s explosives for the rifling I have” show that the speaker has already been transformed by the war into a weapon, made of steel and no longer feels “I moan / the barrel’s cold esophagus.”


 This film Hurt Locker director by Kathryn Bigelow exhibits sharp contrast to the poem “Here, Bullet” by Turner. The film seems to express pleasure in terms of war unlike the poem which attempt to bring out the devastating features of the war in Iraq. In the film James appear to deliberately invite trouble which is not the situation portrayed by the poem. According to the poem soldiers try as much as possible to avoid trouble and they do not delight themselves in war.


                      The film “the Hurt Locker” seems factious concerning the war in Iraq because in the film James seems to enjoy his time in the battle field. Going with the theme and the mood of the poem “Here, Bullet” the war situation at Iraq was far from what anyone could find appealing.                  The also seem to glorify the war and the art war through its scenes such as; the time sanborn was providing cover fire. This is in contrast with the theme of the poem “Here, Bullet” which communicates the negative impacts of war in specific reference to the war in Iraq. The poem expresses devastating effect wars have on every individual involved and bears minimal benefits to people.


 

                   The poem “Here, Bullet” is good piece of literature as it enlightens Americans on what transfers in the battle field. It provides information which would be difficult to obtain through other media since the speaker was writing from his own personal experiences. The poem frankly expresses the effect of war thorough themes such fear, death, blood, despair and otherness among others. On other hand the film “the Hurt Locker” expresses divergent feeling concerning wars and in particular the war in Iraq.  Through this poem Americans also get to understand the heavy sacrifices that others have to pay in order for them to enjoy stability and protection. The poem expresses harsh realities in war and its undesirable impacts.  


Reference

Kathryn Bigelow (Director), Jeremy Renner (Actor), The Hurt Locker, USA, Summit Entertainment (Studio) (2008)

Turner Brian (2005), “Here, Bullet”, (Book), 1 ed. USA, Alice James Books


 

KINDERGARTEN

KINDERGARTEN


The Russian movie “Kindergarten” has its setting in the World War II era. The movie highlights the hard life and times that people experienced during the World War II. The generation of Russians in the period depicted by ‘Kindergarten’ were struggling with difficulties of acquiring food, secure shelter and clothing. There was great scarcity of supplies in most towns and most people had escaped to the countryside due to fear of air raids carried out by the Germans against Russian civilians and the military. Young Zhenia joins the masses of people that are on their way to the Siberian villages after the October, 1941 Moscow evacuation (Yevtushenko, npag) . Most families were separated and the times were extremely hard, especially for the children that were growing up during that era.


The evacuations at the time meant that much of the life had to come to stand still, and people had to seek alternative means to survive other than depend on their business activities and employment. The war meant that there were no businesses running or schools operating and all concerns were directed towards basic survival. Children missed school as they were forced to seek for safer places where they could escape German attacks. The hard life and lack of supplies can be well depicted in the movie and even young children steal to get their basic requirements. A boy on the evacuation train tries to steal Zhenia’s shoes, but later he offers them to him for free (Yevtushenko, npag)  . Much of the government’s efforts at the time were focused on the war and all energies of production were also reserved for the war, and thus there was little concern for the government about the general populace. The major concern at the time was to offer people security and that was all.


 Works Cited

Kindergarten, Yevgeny Yevtushenko, 1989, Film


 

Root causes of World War I.

Root causes of World War I.


 

Introduction:

            The “First World War” alternatively known as “World War One” or the “Great War” broke out in Europe in the year 1914. The military encounters subsided in 1918 after lasting for an approximate four year period. The fighting included all the powerful nations of Europe and later expanded in to oriental countries such as Japan, and later America joined the war at it last moments. All these world powerful nations grouped into two powerful alliances namely the “central powers” and the “allies”. The allies were grouped on the basis of the “Triple Entete”, an alliance that was built between the Russians, Britons and the French.  The allies on the other hand constituted of the “Ottoman Empire”, Germany, the BulgarianKingdom, and the “Austria-Hungarian Empire”. The war experienced the largest mobilization of forces with at a least 70 million people involved in the military front, with approximately 60 million of them being from Europe. An approximated 90 million people died at the war front. These large numbers of death could be attributed to the advances in technology and fire power and with little mobility. The war was one of the deadliest combat experiences in history-ranking second after the Second World War (Collins, 46).


 

Thesis statement

            The First World War has been attributed to various reasons, some of them being immediate causes, whilst others; may be declared as the root causes or long term causative factors that led up to the actual war. Therefore, the immediate causes seem to only have been catalysts that caused the actual outbreak of the war. The multiplicity of these reasons has led to debates on what may actually have caused the onset of the First World War. Whilst the immediate causes are well known the others are speculated reasons that bear significance, and actually seem to be actual reasons, because the magnitude of the war and subsequent mobilizations could not have been possibly elicited by the primary and immediate sources that were cited as the initiators of the war.


 

            The immediate and primary reason for the onset of this war was the assassination of the Austrian Arch-duke.  Franz Ferdinand was murdered in the month of June in the same year that the war began by a nationalist from Serbia. The crisis that followed in the subsequent month led to a justification of engagement in war-“casus belli”-made by the generals and statesmen of the nations that went into the first engagement.  The Serbian Princip Gavrillo murdered both the Arch-Duke and his wife at Sarajevo. Sarajevo was actually a part of Austria-Hungary within its Bosnian territory. The Serb nationalist did the act as a protest against Austria-Hungary’s occupation of the Sarajevo region. The interests of Serbia to have Herzegovina and Bosnia did not augur well with Austria-Hungary and therefore, they declared war. As a result, Russia decided to mobilize its forces because within the same alliance with Serbia (Collins, 26). This led to a chain of subsequent events where more and more allied forces joined to fight alongside their alliance members. After Russia’s declaration, Germany decided to join the war and fight to protect the ally-Austria-Hungary. As the mobilization intensified more and more allied nations joined the war thus expanding the war wider and wider within Europe.


 

            Apparently, this offers the immediate cause and onset of the war, but it does not explain how these alliances had been formed initially, and their purpose as well as why they were so quick to take sides and go into direct engagement without seeking alternatives. The whole “boil over” seemed like a reaction that had been awaiting a trigger or catalyst to set off the subsequent series of activities of combat that were witnessed. It is for this reason that historical analysis has traced various underlying reasons that may have caused the war (Lowry, 51). However, amidst all the cited causes there is none that has singly been labeled as the main cause, and they all seem to have made significant contributions to the onset and occurrence of the approximately four year combat. Amongst the cited reasons include antagonistic relations and non-military conflicts that had existed prior to the war as well as imperialism, militarism, nationalism and the formation of alliances.


 

            The mutual creation and entry of nations into defense alliances was a precursor to the war as well as road map of the war’s direction. Nations all over Europe got into mutual agreements to defend each other in cases of war, and therefore; the attack of one nation would lead to the engagement of more than just one nation as the whole alliance would come in to defend their members. Prior to this war the following alliances existed and they defined the actual shape and sequence of the war: Britain and Japan, Russia and France, Serbia and Russia, Austria-Hungary and Germany as well as Belgium, France and Britain. These alliances actually created the sequence for the war evidenced by how each of these nations joined the war.


 

            Imperialism and its subsequent expansionist policies led conflict as nations went on a scramble for territories beyond their nation in search of raw materials. This could be exemplified by the scrambling and partitioning of the African continent by European nations. The scrambling witnessed in Asia and Africa did not turn violent, but it contributed to the creation of friction between European nations (Kelly, 1).


 

            The onset of the arms race in the twentieth century led to the pile up of massive stocks of arms and this led to great military power consolidation in nations such as Germany. The Britons and Germans also increased the naval war capacity greatly prior to this period in what seemed as a match up competition. The spread of militarism in nations such as Russia and Germany was so profound that the influence of the military soon began shaping the policies of the public life and thus creating an environment where war was an easy thing to start (Lowry, 73).


 

            As part of these causes, nationalism can also be cited; for example Slavs under Herzegovina and Bosnia desired to be part of the Serbian nation rather than the Austria-Hungary territory. This is partly the reason why the Arch-duke was murdered- a clear trigger of the actual war. On the other hand, the urge for each nation to prove its strength and power as a nation led to further worsening of the conflict and as such can be cited as a contributing factor to the “First World War” (Kelly, 1).


 

Conclusion

            Conclusively, the “First World War” was caused by a mixture of factors among them imperialism, militarism, nationalism as well as the formation of alliances besides the actual immediate cause. The immediate cause-the murder of the Austrian Arch-duke-only acted as a trigger to the onset of the war.


 

Works Cited/Bibliography

Collins, F. Ross, World War One, Greenwood Publishing Group, 2008. Print

Lowry, Bullit, The causes and consequences of World War One, TamkangUniversity, 1996 Print

Kelly, Martin, Top five causes of world war one, retrieved on 16th December, 2010. Web, 2010 <http://americanhistory.about.com/od/worldwari/tp/causes-of-world-war-1.htm>


 

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