Rhodes and Lee

Aug. 18th, 2017 07:24 am
steepholm: (Default)
[personal profile] steepholm
Last year I spent some time on Facebook arguing with people who thought that the "Rhodes must fall" campaign was wrongheaded because it was erasing history.

I suggested that putting a statue up to someone was generally (and in this case undoubtedly) not intended as a dispassionate recording of the fact that such-and-such had occurred, but rather a celebration of that person's life and deeds. In this case, the statue of Rhodes marks the approbation of the Oxford college he had endowed with some of his very ill-gotten African spoils.

True, came the reply, but that approbation is itself a historical artefact, and to take down the statue is to erase it. Well then, why not put it in a museum, along with the other historical artefacts, and stick a label on it detailing exactly how Rhodes came by the money to endow colleges and scholarships? Why keep it in a place of honour, thus perpetuating the honour done to Rhodes?

Of course, taking down a statue can never be more than a symbolic act, any more than raising it, or indeed keeping it. Symbolism is the currency of statues. To try and pretend that they are naturally evolve into some kind of historical resource is profoundly disingenuous. (In the case of Rhodes, I don't think anyone tried to argue that the statue was a thing of beauty, but aesthetic arguments fall into much the same category.) Museums and art galleries are themselves far from politics-free zones, obviously, but at least they make some overt attempt to defuse and reframe such things as historical and/or aesthetic objects rather than direct political statements.

In the end, Rhodes stayed of course, because Rhodes's successors (the college's current donors) threatened to withdraw funding if it was removed. ("Now I see, I see, / In Fulvia's death, how mine received shall be," as they put it.) As ever, money shouts.

Anyway, I was just wondering to myself how the nice people I was arguing with on FB last year (nice liberal types, every one) feel about Trump making exactly the same arguments this week? Were they nodding along? If not, why not?

As a tangential postscript, I gave my friend Haruka a lift to Brighton yesterday (I was helping my daughter move some of her things back to Bristol), and we stopped in at my mother's for a cup of tea en route. Haruka took this picture of my mother. It was only after five minutes that I noticed that it also includes her care assistant, Haawa. Talk about hidden black history!

IMG_3680

Can you spot her, readers?

Weekly Reading

Aug. 17th, 2017 10:32 pm
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[personal profile] torachan
What are you currently reading?
I read about a chapter more on Attack of the Theater People, but that's it. I think I've only managed to read before bed one time this last week, and every other night I stayed up too late and went straight to sleep. (Even the nights I went to bed early I was too tired to read.)

What did you recently finish reading?
I finally finished The History of Forgetting. This book was kind of a mish-mash of the history of LA, LA in fiction, and some actual fiction about LA. The latter is the weakest part of the book and I think dropping it would have made it a better book overall. A random sixty-page novella dropped in the middle of a work of non-fiction could possibly be made to work, but it didn't here, at least not for me.

I did like the parts that were actual history of LA and a look at how LA has been portrayed in books and movies over the years. This was published about twenty years ago and a lot has changed downtown since then, and I'd be interested to see the author's thoughts on those changes. It looks like an updated version of the book was released about ten years ago, but even that was before the real downtown revival.

What do you think you'll read next?
Well, I have three books marked "currently reading" on Goodreads that I haven't actually started on, so hopefully one or more of those! People in Trouble by Sarah Schulman is what I just added to GR tonight as my current physical book. I read several books by her a few years ago and really liked them, but for some reason never read the last two I had bought at that time, and when looking for a new book to read tonight after finishing A History of Forgetting, I spotted them and decided to go with that. I've also still got Hollow City, though since I'm also reading Attack of the Theater People, idk if I will actually make any progress on this until I finish that, since I don't like switching between ebooks. Then finally I've got The Big Picture: Murals of Los Angeles, which I found in a pile of books on the curb the other day while out on our evening walk.
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goodwoodwould:

Good wood - I’ve seen a few amazing farmhouse & barn conversions and here’s another beauty. The ‘Townships Farmhouse’ in Montreal by Toronto based architects LAMAS. It was commissioned by an artist and a farmer with long ties to the area. Inspired by old agricultural buildings in Quebec, their brief was for a building that reflected their interest in land conservation and the preservation of agricultural buildings.

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lynati:

scarletjedi:

sleemo:

OMG

If Ewan isn’t already banging on this guys door, wearing his own Obi-Wan costume and carrying his own light saber, ready to *go*, I will be very surprised.

He’s just going to show up on set and ask if they’re ready to start filming.

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rootbeergoddess:

tinydooms:

*mic drop*

Josh Gad is not playing around.

“Gosh, it disturbs me to see you like this… looking so GODDAMN STUPID.”

the vid I made for vividcon this year

Aug. 17th, 2017 10:15 pm
jmtorres: (physics)
[personal profile] jmtorres
This was in Club Vivid, and it is very silly.

vid: UFO
vidder: [personal profile] jmtorres
fandom: Home, AKA The True Meaning of Smek Day, the Movie
song: UFO Has Landed In the Ghetto by Ry Cooder
format: mp4, 39MB
runtime: 2:32
link: on Google Drive. I'm trying a new thing for where to keep my vids. Let me know if you have technical issues downloading it, please!
warnings: I can't think of any, there's a couple of explosions but it's an animated kids movie, they're not exactly graphic.

Today's Adventures

Aug. 17th, 2017 11:13 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
We went up to Champaign today with family.  Mild weather, nice day for an outing.  :D

World Harvest keeps improving their stock of tea and spices.  \o/  Regrettably the cumin and ginger bottles don't fit in our spice rack. >_<  But I found some other stuff I haven't seen in a while so I'm happy.  Also the food selection on the Strawberry Fields side is improving.  The beef pie is a tasty little thing.



My partner Doug and I tried the gansito split at El Oasis. Gansito is a Mexican junk food similar to a chocolate-covered twinkie. I imagine it would be awful by itself, but is quite good with ice cream, either mixed in or like this, split with several scoops of ice cream in between.  Chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla topped with whipped cream, nuts, and a cherry.  <3

Barnes & Noble continues to grow more annoying.  Twice I had someone stop and ask if I needed help finding anything.  Well no, you already broke the bookstore, so you can't fix that.  I need to browse by looking at a batch of similar things arranged by topic.  Now that you have dispersed the new books among the old books, this is impossible, unless you want to go hand-sort the new ones for me.  The cookbooks are splodged together, some by topic, others by author or title.  So instead of having all the special diet books together, organized by name of their theme, which would be easy to browse, they're all scattered over a couple of bookcases.  Someone actually asked me if I knew the titles I wanted.  Well if I knew the titles, I'd be able to find them myself! It was yet another damning example of how the store is catering not to bookworms, but to people who don't usually go into bookstores.  I guess they've been hyping electronics often enough that they're getting a lot of traffic that can't even find a help desk.  0_o  It's gotten to where just being asked is an irritant, another reminder that I'm no longer their target audience.  Jesus, lady, I was helping shelve library books when I was four.  >_<  I did find a couple of books to buy, but it's not fun like it used to be.  Bah.

At Wal-Mart I found a new pair of shorts.  Things that make me ridiculously happy: garments made of that silky, ventilated fabric that's almost never used on girl clothes, only guy clothes.  These shorts are lined and have contrasting trim around the edges.  I first got gray with pink trim to go with some tie-dye shirts I bought.  Then I got the turquoise with white and tonight the black with white.  I wanted the cobalt blue, but so far everyone's been out of that in my size.  I'd be happier if these had pockets, but I like the fabric enough to tolerate the lack.  They're really comfortable and really, really genderfucking awesome.  :D

2 links 17 August 2017

Aug. 17th, 2017 11:15 pm
sasha_feather: Retro-style poster of skier on pluto.   (Default)
[personal profile] sasha_feather posting in [community profile] access_fandom
Eric Deggans on NPR (All Things Considered):

Netflix, ABC Portrayals Of Autism Still Fall Short, Critics Say

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2017/08/11/542668400/netflix-abc-portrayals-of-autism-still-fall-short-critics-say

You can read or listen to this piece, which is about "The Good Doctor" and "Atypical".

Up to not-EIGHT-hours of sleep!

Aug. 17th, 2017 11:49 pm
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
[personal profile] archangelbeth
Which is an improvement, but I should like to catch up with nine sometime.

Tomorrow the washing machine comes.

Today, I belatedly ordered spouse's anniversary gift. I told him this. He went, "But I didn't get you anything." I told him the washer could count. He said that sounded like something that should get him in trouble instead. OTOH, not having to go to the laundromat is certainly a win...

Plus all his clothes are permanent-press, and transporting those -- they have to hang to get the folds right -- would be pretty tricky or impossible to do from the laundromat. (Which made me realize that permanent-press is a status marker along the lines of "owns house and washer/dryer." The next status marker up is "send everything out to be dry-cleaned," I suspect? Which then removes the need for house and washer/dryer, probably due to living in a studio apartment downtown that costs eleventy zillion a month and has a spectacular view and white chairs...)

Portuguese version of Legend of the Morning Star should be up on the Zon now. And now I can fix... the copyright date. *headdesk*

(Please continue good thoughts for my friend who dearly, dearly needs them.)

Havva Quote
M__ needs to rant about Secret Empire again.
M__ thought he purged all the toxin. But then comics this week came out.
-----------------------Quoted by M__------------------------
M__: Wow, I'm glad Secret Empire can't get worse...

Marvel: HOLD MY BEER!
------------------------------------------------------------


INwatch+Bookwatch )

Dragons under fold )

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"Jazz Fish, a saxophone playing wanderer, finds himself in Mamboland at a critical phase in his life." --Howie Green, on his book Jazz Fish Zen

Yeah. That sounds about right.

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