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In 2012, the Government invited local councils in England to participate in a pilot programme to test direct payments in residential care. While the programme was set up to allow for comprehensive summative evaluation, the uptake of direct payments in residential care was substantially lower than anticipated, with only 40 people in receipt of one at the end of the programme. Drawing on qualitative data collected for the evaluation, this paper aims to understand better the barriers to implementing direct payments in residential care. Evidence from the use of direct payments in domiciliary care identified gatekeeping by council frontline staff as a major barrier for service users to access direct payments. Our findings suggest that, whilst selectivity of both service users and providers was an integral part of the programme design, gatekeeping does not fully explain the poor take-up. Other factors played a part, such as lack of clarity about the benefits of direct payments for care home residents, the limited range and scope of choice of services for residents, and concerns from care providers about the financial impact of direct payments on their financial sustainability.
A field study was conducted in 2014 and 2015 in an established 5-yr old commercial blackberry planting to determine the effect of vegetation-free strip width (VFSW) on ‘Navaho’ blackberry vegetative growth, yield and fruit quality parameters, identify the optimum VFSW for blackberry plantings in the southeastern USA, and provide practical groundcover management recommendations that can increase the productivity of blackberry plantings. In Fall 2013, tall fescue was seeded in-row and allowed to establish. In Spring 2014, VFSW treatments (0, 0.6, 0.9, 1.2, and 1.8 m) were established in a randomized complete block statistical design with four replications. Blackberry growth measurements included primocane and floricane number, cane diam, individual fruit weight and yield. Fruit quality measurements included, soluble solids concentration (SSC), titratable acidity (TA) and pH. Primocane number increased with increasing VFSW in both years. Floricane number increased with increasing VFSW in 2014. Primocane diam decreased with increasing VFSW in 2014 but had a quadratic response in 2015. Berry weight and cumulative yield increased with increasing VFSW in both years. The only berry quality component affected by VFSW was pH, which decreased as VFSW increased. Results indicate that widening the VFSW in blackberry from the current recommendation of 1.2 m to 1.8 m could provide growers a means to increase plant growth, berry weight, and cumulative yield blackberry of a planting.
To assess the association between food insecurity and depression symptom severity stratified by sex, and test for evidence of effect modification by social network characteristics.
A population-based cross-sectional study. The nine-item Household Food Insecurity Access Scale captured food insecurity. Five name generator questions elicited network ties. A sixteen-item version of the Hopkins Symptom Checklist for Depression captured depression symptom severity. Linear regression was used to estimate the association between food insecurity and depression symptom severity while adjusting for potential confounders and to test for potential network moderators.
In-home survey interviews in south-western Uganda.
All adult residents across eight rural villages; 96 % response rate (n 1669).
Severe food insecurity was associated with greater depression symptom severity (b=0·4, 95 % CI 0·3, 0·5, P<0·001 for women; b=0·3, 95 % CI 0·2, 0·4, P<0·001 for men). There was no evidence of effect modification by social network factors for women. However, for men who are highly embedded within in their village social network, and (separately) for men who have few poor contacts in their personal network, the relationship between severe food insecurity and depression symptoms was stronger than for men on the periphery of their village social network, and for men with many poor personal network contacts, respectively.
In this population-based study from rural Uganda, food insecurity was associated with mental health for both men and women. Future research is needed on networks and food insecurity-related shame in relation to depression symptoms among food-insecure men.
A controversy currently exists regarding the number of Toba eruptive events represented in the tephra occurrences across peninsular India. Some claim the presence of a single bed, the 75,000-yr-old Toba tephra; others argue that dating and archaeological evidence suggest the presence of earlier Toba tephra. Resolution of this issue was sought through detailed geochemical analyses of a comprehensive suite of samples, allowing comparison of the Indian samples to those from the Toba caldera in northern Sumatra, Malaysia, and importantly, the sedimentary core at ODP Site 758 in the Indian Ocean—a core that contains several of the earlier Toba tephra beds. In addition, two samples of Toba tephra from western India were dated by the fission-track method. The results unequivocally demonstrate that all the presently known Toba tephra occurrences in peninsular India belong to the 75,000 yr B.P. Toba eruption. Hence, this tephra bed can be used as an effective tool in the correlation and dating of late Quaternary sedimentary sequences across India and it can no longer be used in support of a middle Pleistocene age for associated Acheulian artifacts.
Alluvial and lacustrine sediments exposed beneath late Pleistocene glaciolacustrine silt and clay at two sites along the Old Crow River, northern Yukon Territory, are rich in fossils and contain tephra beds. Surprise Creek tephra (SZt) occurs in the lower part of the alluvial sequence at CRH47 and Little Timber tephra (LTt) is present near the base of the exposure at CRH94. Surprise Creek tephra has a glass fission-track age of 0.17 ± 0.07 Ma and Little Timber tephra is 1.37 ± 0.12 Ma. All sediments at CRH47 have a normal remanent magnetic polarity and those near LTt at CRH94 have a reversed polarity — in agreement with the geomagnetic time scale. Small mammal remains from sediments near LTt support an Early Pleistocene age but the chronology is not so clear at CRH47 because of the large error associated with the SZt age determination. Tephrochronological and paleomagnetic considerations point to an MIS 7 age for the interglacial beds just below SZt at CRH47 and at Chester Bluffs in east-central Alaska, but mammalian fossils recovered from sediments close to SZt suggest a late Irvingtonian age, therefore older than MIS 7. Further studies are needed to resolve this problem.
The essays in this book explore how medieval romances respond to material culture, but also how romance itself helps to constitute and transmit that culture. In this introductory chapter I shall touch on how romances do this and why it might be important, but I should like to start with a very material example to provide a way of thinking about the theme of the collection.
Folio 2 recto of Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Ashmole 45 is the title page for a copy of the romance The Erle of Tolous (plate I). The title ‘The Story of the Erle of Tolous’ is written at the top of the page in display script, with an elaborate strapwork initial letter ‘T’, characteristic of legal and government scribes in London in the 1520s to 1530s. The page in fact mimics the developing layout of title pages in contemporary printed books. Beneath the title is a finely drawn pen-and-ink presentation picture, in which a young man appears to hand a book to a lady. His speech scroll contains the words ‘PRENES : ENGRE’. Under the couple, the words ‘Maid Maria’ are presented as a pair of monograms. In a valuable essay investigating this manuscript's context and ownership, Carol Meale has discussed the picture's artistic milieu and likely circumstances of production. She dates this copy of The Erle of Tolous to the late 1520s, linking the style of the presentation picture to the influence of a family of Flemish artists, the Horenbouts, who were active in London in the 1520s. The romance's scribe includes his name, ‘Morganus’, in the decorated initial of the opening of the text on fol. 3r, and Meale convincingly links his ‘variety of legal anglicana’ to analogous administrative and legal documents of the period. What is striking for our purposes is the way in which the likely gift of this book, perhaps on the occasion of the engagement or marriage of a well-to-do, urban couple, immediately binds the reading of the romance into a material environment.
Materiality and the material are important in medieval romance. The essays here focus both on the physical forms of romance texts (manuscripts, verse form, illustrations and visual portryals), and on how romances themselves inhabit and reflect on the material culture of the Middle Ages. Specific themes discussed include social, historical, and physical space; bodies and gender politics; and romance illustrations in manuscripts, and in other media. Nicholas Perkins is University Lecturer and Tutor in medieval English, University of Oxford. Contributors: Siobhain Bly Calkin, Nancy Mason Bradbury, Aisling Byrne, Anna Caughey, Neil Cartlidge, Mark Cruse, Morgan Dickson, Rosalind Field, Elliott Kendall, Megan Leitch, Henrike Manuwald, Ad Putter, Raluca Radulescu, Robert Rouse,
The worlds created by Middle English romances are frequented by important objects (often gifts), by exchanges of tokens and promises, and by protagonists who are regularly both party to and subjects of exchange. One way of reading these objects and exchanges is to categorize them as narrative clutter: a naïve or aspirational fascination with luxury materials, or clumsy plot devices that rely on formulaic social actions. Another is to assign symbolic or associative meaning to them: in these readings, objects and exchanges provide structural or psychological motifs denoting a larger arena of meaning. While not discounting such approaches, this essay shifts the focus to the relationships between description and narration in two romances. In them, I argue, the techniques of describing objects and the people who own, carry or wear them bear on aspects of romance narrative itself, and in particular on how romances engage or provoke their reading or listening audience. The contexts in which I shall read them are initially those of rhetoric and material culture. In particular, the rhetorical figure of ekphrasis – a trope characterized by vivid description of things and actions – helps to draw together the arenas of poetic style, materiality and audience engagement, reminding us that certain contexts are neither easy nor necessarily productive to separate.
Sir Eglamour of Artois and Emaré survive in London, British Library, MS Cotton Caligula A.II (first part), a rather plain, paper manuscript dating from the mid-fifteenth century containing eight romances amongst practical and religious texts in English.