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This Companion offers a comprehensive and accessible introduction to the environmental humanities, an interdisciplinary movement that responds to a world reconfigured by climate change and its effects, from environmental racism and global migration to resource impoverishment and the importance of the nonhuman world. It addresses the twenty-first century recognition of an environmental crisis – its antecedents, current forms, and future trajectories – as well as possible responses to it. This books foregrounds scholarship from different periods, fields, and global locations, but it is organized to give readers a working context for the foundational debates. Each chapter examines a key topic or theme in Environmental Humanities, shows why that topic emerged as a category of study, explores the different approaches to the topics, suggests future avenues of inquiry, and considers the topic's global implications, especially those that involve environmental justice issues.
This book explores the main challenges against multiculturalism. It aims to examine whether liberalism and multiculturalism are reconcilable, and what are the limits of liberal democratic interventions in illiberal affairs of minority cultures within democracy. In the process, this book addresses three questions: whether multiculturalism is bad for democracy, whether multiculturalism is bad for women, and whether multiculturalism contributes to terrorism. Just, Reasonable Multiculturalism argues that liberalism and multiculturalism are reconcilable if a fair balance is struck between individual rights and group rights. Raphael Cohen-Almagor contends that reasonable multiculturalism can be achieved via mechanisms of deliberate democracy, compromise and, when necessary, coercion. Placing necessary checks on groups that discriminate against vulnerable third parties, the approach insists on the protection of basic human rights as well as on exit rights for individuals if and when they wish to leave their cultural groups.
Patients with azoospermia were once considered to be infertile, with few treatment options. A number of sperm retrieval methods have been developed to obtain spermatozoa from the epididymis and testicles of azoospermic men. This chapter addresses methods for enhancing surgical sperm retrieval and highlights the techniques, imaging modalities, medical therapies, and additional procedures that have led to this increased success.
The ethical risks inherent in student research on political violence that involve human participants are myriad. Undergraduate and master’s students face constraints that are different than those for many doctoral students and faculty researchers, and it is the responsibility of educators and academic institutions to ensure that students engage in ethical practices and to mitigate risks. This article focuses on formal mechanisms of oversight. Drawing on discussions with colleagues across the globe, we describe how institutions can design oversight mechanisms to manage student research. We present five distinct models for how ethical oversight of student research is provided in academic programs around the world, considering the costs and benefits of each model. The article concludes that whereas the creation of oversight systems can seem daunting, it is useful to start small—indeed, moving from no oversight to some oversight is a significant improvement. Programs and academic units then can build on these early efforts, experiment with other systems, and eventually develop a system that is adapted to an institution through iterative improvements based on student and faculty experiences.
The timing and duration of the coldest period in the last glacial stage, often referred to as the last glacial maximum (LGM), has been observed to vary spatially and temporally. In Australia, this period is characterised by colder, and in some places more arid, climates than today. We applied Monte-Carlo change point analysis to all available continuous proxy records covering this period, primarily pollen records, from across Australia (n = 37) to assess this change. We find a significant change point occurred (within uncertainty) at 28.6 ± 2.8 ka in 25 records. We interpret this change as a shift to cooler climates, associated with a widespread decline in biological productivity. An additional change point occurred at 17.7 ± 2.2 ka in 24 records. We interpret this change as a shift towards warmer climates, associated with increased biological productivity. We broadly characterise the period between 28.6 (± 2.8) – 17.7 (± 2.2) ka as an extended period of maximum cooling, with low productivity vegetation that may have occurred as a combined response to reduced temperatures, lower moisture availability and atmospheric CO2. These results have implications for how the spatial and temporal coherence of climate change, in this case during the LGM, can be best interrogated and interpreted.
This chapter is concerned with the fable, in this case the Akkadian fable of The Date-Palm and the Tamarisk, which travelled eastward to Persia and westward to Greece: in both places, the fable retained its ‘deep structure’ but underwent adaptations on the surface to suit the new localities. The fable posed a fundamental question to its audiences – is the cult of the gods more important than preservation of humans? – and provided a platform on which views and beliefs of other cultures could be built, with the change of scene or characters as needed.
Bob Dylan grew up in Hibbing, Minnesota, during the 1950s, where the opportunity to hear folk music was something of a rarity. Indeed, the young Robert Zimmerman was hooked on R&B (black) and rock ’n’ roll (white). This was the soundtrack for teens at that time, and he even played the piano, as well as the acoustic and electric guitar, in local bands. It was not until Dylan moved to Minneapolis in 1959, he long contended, that he discovered folk music, particularly its early roots in recorded blues and country music, and especially Woody Guthrie, who would become his role model.
This study aimed to develop, validate and compare the performance of models predicting post-treatment outcomes for depressed adults based on pre-treatment data.
Individual patient data from all six eligible randomised controlled trials were used to develop (k = 3, n = 1722) and test (k = 3, n = 918) nine models. Predictors included depressive and anxiety symptoms, social support, life events and alcohol use. Weighted sum scores were developed using coefficient weights derived from network centrality statistics (models 1–3) and factor loadings from a confirmatory factor analysis (model 4). Unweighted sum score models were tested using elastic net regularised (ENR) and ordinary least squares (OLS) regression (models 5 and 6). Individual items were then included in ENR and OLS (models 7 and 8). All models were compared to one another and to a null model (mean post-baseline Beck Depression Inventory Second Edition (BDI-II) score in the training data: model 9). Primary outcome: BDI-II scores at 3–4 months.
Models 1–7 all outperformed the null model and model 8. Model performance was very similar across models 1–6, meaning that differential weights applied to the baseline sum scores had little impact.
Any of the modelling techniques (models 1–7) could be used to inform prognostic predictions for depressed adults with differences in the proportions of patients reaching remission based on the predicted severity of depressive symptoms post-treatment. However, the majority of variance in prognosis remained unexplained. It may be necessary to include a broader range of biopsychosocial variables to better adjudicate between competing models, and to derive models with greater clinical utility for treatment-seeking adults with depression.
One thrust in increasing food security in Jamaica is expansion of cassava production. The multiple shoot removal technique (MSRT) for rapid propagation of cassava can help address limitations in planting material. Shoots sprouting from cuttings of hardwood stem are severed in such a way as to induce further sprouting, and then put to root for subsequent transfer to the field. The effects of age and fertilization of parent plants and nodal age of stems were studied. Six Colombian varieties were planted in fertilized and unfertilized field plots with similar growing conditions to provide stems for MSRT propagation. Volume of two-node cuttings increased from apical to basal nodal age, but cutting density was a better predictor of shoot production. On average, three to six viable shoots were produced per cutting over 3 months in a greenhouse. All nodal ages of stems from parent plants aged 6, 7 and 9 months were suitable if the quality of the planting stakes producing parent plants was adequate. If stake quality is uncertain, it is recommended that apical pieces are not used from parents younger than 9 months. The variety CM 6119-5 consistently produced most shoots, suggesting a strong genotypic effect, but other varieties, particularly CM 849, were less consistent, indicating the role of environmental interactions. The physiological status of cuttings as influenced by stem maturity, parent plant age, nutrition and growing conditions of both grandparent and parent stems was as important as genotypic characteristics in determining shoot production from two-node cuttings of cassava stem.
Within a mere two generations – from Rashi to Joseph Qara to Rashbam – the rules of Ashkenazic Bible interpretation were rewritten in northern France, as outlined in the preceding chapter. No longer was the Bible viewed exclusively as a divine cryptic document, to be decoded through the tools of midrashic inquiry. The peshat project entailed analyzing the Bible as an open book like others, its meaning to be understood through contextual-philological analysis. Rather than mining the sacred text for moral and halakhic “instruction,” the pashtanim aimed to understand the ancient Scripture within its human historical context in the Near East of biblical times. It is thus not surprising that this movement has been viewed as a precursor of modern historical-critical Bible scholarship. But the twelfth-century pashtanim were not modern Bible scholars. It is necessary to consider how they perceived this new interpretive model within their cultural-intellectual framework and to ask: what was the status of this peshat method – in their view – vis-à-vis the traditional midrashic mode of reading Scripture? As we shall demonstrate in this chapter, a new appreciation of the Bible’s literary nature – which finds illuminating parallels in Latin learning – was essential for negotiating the narrow straits between the traditional midrashic outlook and the powerful peshat methodology that emerged in the circle of Joseph Qara, Rashbam, and their students in twelfth-century northern France.
Much as the long-accepted view that Rashi was intellectually isolated from his Latin milieu in northern France has been challenged in the last two decades of the twentieth century, recent scholarship calls for reconsideration of the earlier tendency to minimize the cultural ties between the Ashkenazic community and Jews in Muslim lands during the eleventh century. Increasing evidence points to continuous trade among Jewish centers in Christian and Muslim lands, especially between the Rhineland, where Rashi studied, and Byzantium, al-Andalus, North Africa, and Iraq. It probably was along one of these routes that the Babylonian Talmud and the teachings of the Geonim first came to the Rhineland. Based on indications that Rashi had access to Jewish learning in Muslim lands, Avraham Grossman has argued that a key impetus for Rashi’s peshat revolution was his awareness of the Judeo-Arabic peshat tradition that had reached maturity in al-Andalus by the eleventh century. The current chapter aims to evaluate that theory.
Until almost the very end of the twentieth century, it was assumed that Rashi was the first Rabbanite Jewish interpreter in Christian lands to have composed Bible commentaries that depart from midrashic interpretation and apply a philological-contextual mode of exegesis to arrive at what Rashi termed peshuto shel miqra. This assumption was proven wrong with the publication by Nicholas de Lange in 1996 of a commentary by a certain Reuel on Ezekiel and the Minor Prophets found in the Cairo Genizah that is believed to have been completed by the year 1000 in Asia Minor, perhaps in Byzantium itself. Written in Hebrew with occasional Greek glosses, the commentary manifests a remarkably developed contextual-philological mode of interpretation independent of midrashic exegesis. We had long been aware of a Karaite exegetical school in Byzantium, which has its roots in the tenth-century project of Tobiah ben Moses to translate into Hebrew important Karaite exegetical works of the Jerusalem school earlier in the tenth century, which were penned in Arabic. But linguistic and stylistic analysis of Reuel’s writing indicates that he was a Rabbanite and not a Karaite. On the other hand, the Byzantine commentary on 1 Kings published by de Lange has been demonstrated by Richard Steiner to be Karaite, perhaps penned by Tobiah ben Moses; and Steiner also considers it likely that the highly fragmentary glosses on Genesis and Joshua published by de Lange are also the remnant of a Karaite commentary.
Rabbi Solomon Yitzhaqi (1040–1105), known as Rashi, is perhaps the most influential Jewish Bible interpreter of all time. A native of Troyes in the French county of Champagne, Rashi traveled in his youth to study for a decade in the Rhineland talmudic academies (yeshivot) of Mainz and Worms, then the intellectual center of the Ashkenazic (Franco-German) Jewish world. He returned to Troyes around 1070 and established a vibrant school of Jewish learning that ultimately drew from the best and brightest students of the Ashkenazic community, who would, in turn, become its leading rabbinic figures in the twelfth century. Rashi’s literary output centers on two major works: his Talmud commentary and his Bible commentary, each monumental in its own right. Drawing upon his training in the Rhineland academies by the disciples of the renowned Rabbenu (“our rabbi/master”) Gershom ben Judah (c. 960–1028), known as the “luminary of the diaspora,” Rashi composed a line-by-line commentary on virtually the entire Talmud, the central rabbinic work that embodies the halakhah (Jewish law). Continually perfected throughout his lifetime, Rashi’s Talmud commentary is comprised of lemmas and gloss-type notes that elucidate this highly complex and cryptic multi-volume rabbinic legal work. Though innovative in quality and style, its lineage can be traced to earlier exegetical work in the Rhineland academies, from which would emanate the Talmud commentary of “the sages of Mainz,” a collective work rooted in the teachings of Rabbenu Gershom that was in the process of formation in Rashi’s day, reaching its final form in the twelfth century.
The foundations of Rashi’s scholarly career were established during his years in the Rhineland around 1060–1070. He first came to Mainz to study under R. Jacob ben Yaqar (c. 990–1064), a key disciple of Rabbenu Gershom, who is generally regarded as the fountainhead of Ashkenazic rabbinic learning. R. Jacob, renowned for his piety and humility, was credited by Rashi as the most formative influence on his scholarship, analytic abilities, and religious persona. After R. Jacob’s death, Rashi continued at the Mainz academy, then headed by R. Isaac ben Judah (c. 1010–c. 1090), who played a key role in consolidating Rabbenu Gershom’s talmudic interpretations. A year or two later, Rashi transferred to the more recently established Worms academy, to study under R. Isaac ben Eliezer ha-Levi (c. 1000–c. 1080), another disciple of Rabbenu Gershom who was also deeply involved in communal affairs as the spiritual leader of the Worms community – a model Rashi would later emulate in Troyes.
Precedents for various aspects of Rashi’s exegetical program, as discussed in the previous three chapters, can be identified within two Jewish schools of learning, the Andalusian and Byzantine, as well as in the application of the discipline of grammatica to the Bible as attested at the cathedral school of Rheims. Rashi does not mention any Andalusian authors beside Menahem and Dunash, who, uncharacteristically, wrote in Hebrew rather than Arabic, nor does he ever refer to the Byzantine exegetical school. As discussed in the preceding two chapters, this suggests that Rashi was, in fact, unfamiliar with their exegetical accomplishments. Rashi, of course, does not mention Bruno or any other Remois interpreters either. But that silence does not necessarily indicate that he was unaware of the Christian interpretive school. If Rashi knew of the Arabic-writing Jewish Andalusian or Jewish Byzantine philologically oriented Bible commentators, he almost certainly would have cited them as authoritative sources – as he does Menahem and Dunash. On the other hand, Rashi understandably would not have cited Bruno, Remigius, or other Christian interpreters as authorities on the Bible. Furthermore, the hypothesis of “influence” raised in Chapter 3 is not that Rashi consciously adopted Christian interpretive methods, but rather that the grammatical Christological mode of reading advanced by Bruno and his circle at Rheims could have come to Rashi’s attention and posed a challenge that spurred him to develop an opposing Jewish interpretation “settled upon” the language and sequence of Scripture.