How to Signal You Are Not a White Supremacist
It’s back to class for those of us who teach in medieval studies, and my medievalist colleague Dorothy Kim, Assistant Professor of English at Vassar College (pictured in 2014), wants to make sure you understand the stakes.
The medieval western European Christian past is being weaponized by white supremacist/white nationalist/KKK/nazi extremist groups who also frequently happen to be college students.That does sound bad. But, wait, it gets worse!
Don’t think western European medieval studies is exceptional.... ISIS/ISIL also weaponizes the idea of the pure medieval Islamic past in their recruiting rhetoric for young male Muslims. If the medieval past (globally) is being weaponized for the aims of extreme, violent supremacist groups, what are you doing, medievalists, in your classrooms? Because you are the authorities teaching medieval subjects in the classroom, you are, in fact, ideological arms dealers. So, are you going to be apathetic weapons dealers not caring how your material and tools will be used? Do you care who your buyers are in the classroom? Choose a side. Doing nothing is choosing a side. Denial is choosing a side. Using the racist dog whistle of “we must listen to both sides” is choosing a side. I am particularly struck by this last choice, since I want to know: would you say this about ISIS/ISIL?
How are you signaling in your classroom that you are not upholding white supremacy when you are teaching the subject loved by white supremacists? ... Neutrality may have worked in a distant past when white supremacists/KKK/white nationalists/Nazis were some imagined fringe group, but that is not going to work now.What should we do?! Alas, Professor Kim only points to the necessity of declaring ourselves pure of the white supremacist taint. She does not explain how those of us who do not have her advantages are to cleanse ourselves and our academic subject of this stain, only that we must cleanse ourselves – or else! She concludes with a warning:
You really have no excuse to address whether your medieval studies is a white supremacist medieval studies or not. You also do not have a choice in whether you are part of this debate because the debate is already prevalent and public. Our students are watching and will make judgments and calls on what side you are really on. I suggest overt signaling of how you are not a white supremacist and how your medieval studies is one that does not uphold white supremacy. Neutrality is not optional.I’d better say something! Here goes: “I am not now, nor have I ever been a white supremacist.” You don’t look convinced. What if I swear on a Bible? Heretics won’t swear, they are famous for it. Except maybe I am a witch, and witches make false oaths all the time. And I am pretty sure that if you threw me in a swimming pool, I would float. (Years of being on the high school swim team – it is a hard habit to break.) What should I do? I know. Rather than swear on the Bible, I’ll open it.
Here’s one of my favorite verses:
Nigra sum sed formosa, filiae Hierusalem; ideo dilexit me Rex, et introduxit me in cubiculum suum.
I am black but beautiful, O daughters of Jerusalem; therefore the king has loved me, and brought me into his chamber.Oh, wait, that is the antiphonal version. Believe it or not, this antiphon appears in the ninth-century Carolingian Antiphoner of Compiègne (Paris, Bibliothèque nationale, lat. 17436) as one of the chants for the feast of the Assumption, making it one of the oldest known chants sung in honor of the Virgin Mary. The antiphon was used throughout the Middle Ages for the feasts of the Virgin as well as for the Common of Virgins.
(If you don’t believe me, you can check here on CANTUS, one of the major digital projects in medieval studies, as I am sure Professor Kim would like you to know; she works a lot with digital resources.)
The antiphon was also used in the Office of the Virgin from as early as the eleventh century. In the Use of Rome (that is, the Use that became standard after the council of Trent), it is one of the antiphons for Vespers, sung with Psalm 121 :
Laetatus sum in his quae dicta sunt mihi, “In domum Domini ibimus.” Stantes erant pedes nostri in atriis tuis, Hierusalem, Hierusalem, quae aedificatur ut civitas, cujus participatio ejus in id ipsum, illuc enim ascenderunt tribus, tribus Domini, testimonium Israhel, ad confitendum nomini Domini. Quia illic sederunt sedes in judicium, sedes super domum David, rogate quae ad pacem sunt Hierusalem et abundantia in turribus tuis. Propter fratres meos et proximos meos loquebar pacem de te. Propter domum Domini, Dei nostri, quaesivi bona tibi.
I rejoiced at the things that were said to me, “We shall go into the house of the Lord.” Our feet were standing in thy courts, O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which is built as a city, which is compact together, for thither did the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord, the testimony of Israel, to praise the name of the Lord. Because there seats have sat in judgment, seats upon the house of David, pray for the things that are for the peace of Jerusalem and abundance for them that love thee. Let peace be in thy strength and abundance in thy towers. For the sake of my brethren and of my neighbours I spoke peace of thee. Because of the house of the Lord, our God, I have sought good things for thee.This is what the Song of Songs itself says, which is even more riveting (1:4-5 Vulgate numbering):
Nigra sum sed formosa, filiae Hierusalem, sicut tabernacula Cedar, sicut pelles Salomonis. Nolite me considerare quod fusca sim, quia decoloravit me sol.
I am black but beautiful, O daughters of Jerusalem, as the tents of Kedar, as the curtains of Solomon. Do not look upon me [with contempt] because I am brown, because the sun has discolored me.Why should the bride of the Song of Songs compare herself to the “tents of Kedar”? I talk about this puzzle in my forthcoming book (pp. 227-28):
Kedar was a son of Ishmael, the son of Abraham driven out into the desert when Isaac was born (Genesis 16:15; 21:8-21; 25:13). In the psalms, as we have seen, the tents of Kedar are associated with exile, sojourning in the midst of lying lips and treacherous tongues (Psalm 119 :2-5); in Isaiah, “the villages that Kedar inhabits” are set in the desert (Isaiah 42:11 RSV), while Ezekiel associates “all the princes of Kedar” with Arabia (Ezekiel 27:21 RSV). According to Isaiah, however, there would come a time when “all the flocks of Kedar ... [and] the rams of Nebaioth” would serve before the altar of the Lord, “bring gold and frankincense, and proclaim the praise of the Lord ... and I [the Lord] will glorify my glorious house” (Isaiah 60:6-7 RSV). “For behold,” the prophet promised Zion, “darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the Lord will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you. And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising” (Isaiah 60:2-3 RSV) – just as the Magi came (from Arabia?) with their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to worship the child in his mother’s arms under the star (Matthew 2:9-11).Yes, that’s right. One of the most ancient chants sung throughout the Middle Ages in honor of the Virgin Mary said she was black, like the tents of the son of Ishmael. Don’t you bet the (white) European Christians hated that? You would lose that bet. Big time.
Here is the Virgin Mary as she was depicted in the late twelfth century in the heart of European Christendom in one of the most beautiful windows – that’s what it’s called, Notre Dame de la Belle Verrière – at the cathedral of Chartres:
Notice anything? Wait, let me give you a close up:
Our Lady’s face is dark, you might even say, black. Everything about this window suggests that the color is purposeful, that here we see the Virgin Mary as medieval European Christians wanted her to be seen: black, but beautiful, as the tents of Kedar, as the curtains of Solomon.
Because, you see, medieval Christians did not care what race the Virgin Mary was; they were quite clear, as many seem to forget these days, that she was Jewish. What they cared about was that she was the Mother of God, the woman who had contained in her womb the one who could not be contained, the Creator of Heaven and earth. What they cared about was that she was human – and at the same time a living temple of God.
It’s all there in the window. Again, from my forthcoming book (p. 244), where I am in conversation with Margot Fassler, the current president of the Medieval Academy of America (internal quotations from her book on the Virgin of Chartres, pp. 217-19):
“The first thing to notice about the window,” [Fassler] comments, “is the emphasis on the Virgin’s robe. As the light comes through the window, the blue robe enshrines the Virgin’s body with a gleaming cloud” – just as, we may recall, in the temple tradition Wisdom enveloped the Lord like a cloud as he rode upon the cherubim (Isaiah 19:1; Ezekiel 1:4-28). “The Christ Child’s body, clothed in the purple appropriate to his royal stature, is framed by that of his mother, whose shimmering garment completely surrounds him like a cloth halo made splendid by light” – just as, according to the early Christians the purple of the temple veil framed the Lord as he entered into the world from the Holy of Holies (Hebrews 8-9). “Radiant too is her restored head,* surrounded as it is by a beaded orb of light that is the same radiant blue as her robe” – for so, as her Orthodox devotees depicted her in their icons, the face of the Virgin must have shone when she gazed upon her Son, the Lord (cf. Exodus 34:29-35). “Around the Virgin and Child is rich ruby-red glass, the bejeweled counterpart to the luminous blue robe, which shines all the more brightly because of the contrast. The tent of the tabernacle was red (see Exodus 26:14), and the use of the color here may be symbolic.”Mary, as she is depicted in this window at Chartres and as she was hymned throughout the Middle Ages, was the tabernacle through which God made himself present to the world. That is why, in the window, she is surrounded by angels with thuribles. Again, from my book (p. 245), citing Fassler:
“They provide the appropriate cloud of incense,” with which, as we have seen, the Lord was believed to have become present in his temple (2 Chronicles 5:13-14). Along with the lower four angels, who also hold thuribles, these same [upper] angels also hold pots of manna in their hands, recalling the manna kept in a golden pot in the ark according to Hebrews 9. Again, in Fassler’s reading: “This is a visual sign that the viewer has entered the holiest place of a New Testament configuration of the Temple.” The other two angels hold candles, recalling the candelabra of the temple, while four angels (for a total of twelve, plus two to either side of the dove of the Holy Spirit at the top) stand directly beneath the Virgin’s throne, each holding a golden pillar with which, in Fassler’s reading, to support the Virgin’s veil, alluding at once to the physical relic kept at Chartres, “which was a veil for the tabernacle of her body,” but also to the veil of the tabernacle itself, which surrounded the Holy of Holies (Exodus 26:31-33).There is nothing in this image of the Virgin to suggest that the Christians who designed it cared a toss about race. What they cared about was depicting the relationship between God and his temple, whose curtains were dark like the skin of his mother. It is true that in the thirteenth century, the French who built this cathedral would, thanks to the piety of their king (see Professor Jordan’s scholarship on Louis IX and his crusade), behave abominably towards the Jews whom previous kings had protected with their laws. (One of the most chilling lectures I ever heard was Professor Jordan talking about the efficiency with which the French kings rounded up and expelled the Jews from their domains.) But this did not stop medieval Christians from insisting that Mary had dark hair, dark skin, and dark eyes, as befitted the most beautiful woman God ever made.
Some white supremacist, eh? Spending my life studying the devotion of medieval Christians to a Jewish woman of color!
Let me put it even more bluntly, for those who think the most sacred teachings of the culture aren’t enough. Medieval European Christianity was focused not on Europe, but on Christendom – and the center of Christendom was not in Europe, but in Asia. In the East, where the tents of Kedar came from. I have written already about how medieval European Christians looked to the East as both the place of Paradise and of much greater centers of civilization than they knew at home. Professor Kim knows this – at least, I think she does – but she and her friends have persisted over the past year and a half in labeling me and many of my fellow medievalists as “white supremacists” because it suits their narrative. It is not a narrative that makes any sense if you know anything about our field; as Professor Jordan said when he gave his presidential lecture to the Medieval Academy two years ago, that he could stand there as our president as one of the most respected historians in our field spoke volumes for which he was humbly grateful. (Bill is quite modest, despite being the single best political historian of medieval France we have ever had.)
I have never met Professor Kim; perhaps she does not attend the meetings of the Medieval Academy. But what I know from what she has written about me is this: Professor Kim wants you to be afraid. I don’t. I want – like Mary – for you to know that you are loved and that God so loved the world that he gave his Son in sacrifice that the world might be remade. How should you signal that you are not a white supremacist if you teach the “medieval western European Christian past”? Learn some f*cking medieval western European Christian history, including the history of our field.**
Image credit: Bibliotheca Apostolica Vaticana, Arch. Cap. S. Pietro B.79, fol. 151v (digitized here).
*Not being an art historian, I am a little unclear about what Fassler means here. Even if Mary’s face has been restored (and who is to say whether it was restored accurately), my argument still stands: somebody in Europe wanted Mary depicted as dark, whether in the Middle Ages or the nineteenth century, when, according to Professor Kim, white supremacism was rife. But the temple imagery works regardless, and matters more, as does the evidence from the liturgy. Plus, this is not the only Black Madonna that survives; there are hundreds more.
**And, yes, I know that Hitler had himself depicted as a knight. I don’t recall hearing that he had a particular devotion to the Virgin Mary. After all, she was a Jew.
[UPDATE: I understand from friends that some of my colleagues in medieval studies were hoping to be able to comment. I post all my blog posts on my Facebook feed. If you are a friend or a friend of a friend in my Facebook salon, you are most welcome to post comments there.]
[UPDATE: Since there seems to be some question, how I know that Professor Kim’s target in her blog post was me:
|Facebook Group Screenshot, December 22, 2016|
Professor Kim is right, I did choose to have my article describing Milo’s method published on Breitbart, which is why I did not respond to this screenshot when I received it back at Christmas. But I recognize now that my criticism of her ultimatum in her recent blog post for In the Medieval Middle comes somewhat out of the blue for those not familiar with the Facebook group where she has been having these conversations. She has been public, too, about denouncing me. This is what free speech looks like: disagreements about fundamental perceptions of reality.]
See MedievalGate for the fuller story of my adventures as a conservative in academia.
In the magnified image of the Virgin, while it does appear she has a dark skin tone, the sclera of her eyes appears to hate a nearly identical shade to her skin. The sclera of all humans is white, except for those with jaundice, or, perhaps, a hangover from the wedding at Cana. This suggests to me a discoloration of the glass, perhaps as chemical deterioration unrelated to the original intention of the designer of the image - anyone who works with older browned paper has seen this effect. Less savory, or ham-handed, despoiling is also possible.ReplyDelete
For someone striving to a full professorship Ms. Kim doesn't write very well. She doesn't have any original ideas and everything she writes seems just to be the latest jumble of letters that the professional level of SJW's deem to be the latest and greatest, this week anyways. Could she perhaps be a little jealous of somebody's career and body of work? And maybe seeing a fairly easy target with the usual charges of Crimethink or Oldthink would set the usual hounds baying for blood :) Had to look up some expressions from 1984 for those two words since it's been a few years since I read it and I was going to go for "badthink" but that doesn't seem to fit the syntax from the book. It was a warning novel not a training manual like too,too many of the educated class seem to think. And for information purposes, I'm a High School grad and Ms. Kim wouldn't like me very much as I am a white,middle aged male,and even worse, I work in a resource industry. All Hale The Patriarchy ! heh heh.ReplyDelete
Professor Kim seems to be a rabid anti-white identitarian herself. Also it was very hard to read these rambling thoughts that are written here, is this Professor Kim an actual academic? If so, University standards seemed to have slipped a long way.ReplyDelete
The problem, as I see it, is talentless people with limited intellect being made professors due to a blind devotion to diversity in the university system. Professor Kim should become a scholar first. After she has learned something about the field she can devote some of her spare time on activism.Delete
Dependent on which image they took of this window, fake-Marjam's face and neck may alternately look beige to tan or both beige. In any case it does not prove your nonargument of a straw-grasping premise, based on badly-written stupid ancient Hebrew that had no word for brown then embellished and forged into your Latin and Germanic Scriptures. I don't think anyone would call her face black, not even modern Hebrews who hav sith invented a word for brown. What this hick art betrays is that the artists not only didn't care what race she was (as if she was of a swarthy race this should not be reflected), they didn't care for accuraty or reality. Dark Age Europeans could not portray Semites so they drew themselves. How does a tan-faced blonde Madonna support your claim Europeans aren't Eurocentric? Or a bunch of shitty portraits of "Black Madonna" relate to what she should look like? Maybe you think others believe she looks like toast or other stains.ReplyDelete
Why Papists would take a song in a completely different and older book to [mis]represent Marjam of a completely different age and role I cannot say. But they rely on their own fake texts and manuscripts to keep up this faketh that has less to do with the authors' work. The Trinity was a Catholic fabrication, from the later Comma Johanneum, as was the seven deadly sins, when there were 32 deadly sins in Ro 1 (which the Abrahamic gods and their followers were already mostly guilty of), as was the mother-of-God nonsense, when Jèsu was only the son of man and Emmanuèl the son of the gods logho the father and pneýma the mother, as was the improper capitalization of "God", when it was only in the lowercase definite "ho theos" for "the god". (What's wrong with your curly quotes?)
Jn 3:16 was mistranslated; "cosmos" means array, arrangement, how things are, way of life, whereas "oicumenè" in other passages means world. The NT has nothing to do with you, Brown Sheep, and these flat-Earth gods never knew you nor said anything about you or your culture, time, or continent.
The two testaments are such long mishmash that you could pick passages that claim one thing and its opposite. Whereas in the NT accommodationists like to quote the neither-Jew-nor-Greek line (which Jèsu never said), they ignore the insult of the Canaanite (which Jèsu did say), and the many racial, national, and tribal insults in the OT (extant in Jews' marriage restrictions) explicated along with the history of plagiarism and failure in these hundreds of pages by exProtestant bastard acadèmic: http://www.bibleorigins.net.
Their real targets are not "white supremacists", but any whites who aren't white inferiorists, that is who think that white people are not lesser creatures who must abase themselves before the holy, incorruptible "people of color".ReplyDelete
Spectacular nonsense from this Professor Kim. The best defence against abuse is credibility. By putting something above the truth, all credibility is lost, and whatever was put above truth will become tainted. The world view of the abusers will be confirmed, and they'll be strengthened in their conviction that their understanding is the truthful one. There's nothing Professor Kim could do that would aid the white supremacists in abusing medieval history more, short of joining one of their organizations to become their chief propagandist.ReplyDelete
Keep up the work with facts and reason! It will win out, in the end. I hope.
@alysdexia, that was a lot of effort, just to declare yourself a fool. The issue is what the Christians in medieval Europe believed. What the original Greek or Hebrew texts say is completely irrelevant, as are the historical realities of the times and places described in those texts. The Christians in medieval Europe believed what the Latin translation says. If it told them that the Virgin Mary was black, then they believed that. If she's represented in a multitude of colors, that does, indeed, support your claim that they were ignorant. However, that also doesn't matter. It only reinforces the fact that they didn't care about race, to the extent where they were not only not racists, but outright incapable of racism.
So, you've managed to make a lot of claims, and all of them are irrelevant. Quite astonishing.
By the way, 'cosmos' ('kósmos') means order/existence/good, which, to the ancient Greek, were one and the same. The opposite was 'kháos' ('chaos'), which means disorder/non-existence/evil, which, again, to the ancient Greek, were one and the same. Unspecified, 'kósmos' meant the World/Everyting/Universe (though the Roman understanding of the fundamental quality of the World, as expressed in the root meaning of the word 'Universus' was almost diametrically opposite, with more in common with 'kháos'). However, the meaning, as with all words in all languages, was context dependent. For instance: The world wasn't entirely 'kósmos'; it balanced between 'kósmos' and 'kháos'. A well functioning city state was a 'kósmos', a badly functioning city state was 'kháos', and on its path to destruction. Aristotelian forms were perfect 'kósmos', Aristotelian substance was 'kháos'. Greek culture was 'kósmos', enemy cultures were 'kháos'. Crime was 'kháos', fair punishment was 'kósmos'.
Anyway, I digress. The point is that 'kósmos' can be translated as 'the World', in many contexts. Very many, in fact.
Yet again, quite an astonishing performance by you. I guess it's a result of the superficial, concrete, banal thinking that so many atheists exhibit. Expecting an atheist to understand a concept like 'kósmos' may be somewhat unfair.
Coward Unknown , "will" is the optative auxiliary for "like to" whereas "shall" is the future auxiliary. Good job on your popular apologhètic that proves how the Buybull condemns you: https://medium.com/@alysdexia/kristians-dont-exist-59f4730f6dea. I used my comment as part of my refutation of Milo: https://pastebin.com/ai6bzDDF.Delete
There were no Kristians in medieval Europe as anyone who actually did what Jèsu bade should be dead or in prison. If I said I were Kristian that doesn't make it so. By definition sects like Orthodocs, Catholic, Anglican, Protestant aren't Kristian/Jesuist but Hæretic (Petrist, Papist, mishmash, Paulist). Not only did you not prove that European Hæretics didn't care about race, that you believe race didn't matter is consistent with your first mistake. New Testament/Novum Instrumentum/Vivloi only saved 144,000 Israelite virgins; others (you) got tortured and murdered. What did lay medievals know about Latin? Color names between Latin and Germanic already diverged. My claim that there was no accurate European art of these foreigners is relevant to the fact that they made up their lore. The same figurative/poetic color usages that British Israel/Christian Identity used to "prove" that Jèsu was white were as mis-interpreted as those to prove Semites were black, as Rastafari/etc. tried.
Romans already enabled racism:
1. wan, shining black (as opposed to ater, dull black)
2. bad; evil; ill-omened
1. dull black (as opposed to niger, shining black); dark
2. gloomy, sad, dismal, unlucky
3. (poetic, rare) malevolent
4. (poetic) obscure
Words are one thing but paints are another. So much effort to portray yet mislead or exaggerate? Or were they simply wrong?, whether they meant to be or not.
"Dynamic equivalence" translations and usages are a fraud. Different words exist wherefore they mean different. Thus I don't believe that sýnonýms exist in the same language, only hýpernýms, hýponýms, coordinates, holonýms, and meronýms besides many loanwords and slang. You were the one who applied cosmos to the concrete whereas its etýmon is abstract. Two key passages confute the broad interpretation of world/man.
Everyone is born atheist and doesn't become theist until toddlerhood when theòry of mind injects personhood on causes, even when they don't talk back. There are agnòstic and gnòstic atheists, theists, and antitheists. The last of each group know the subject.
gergonne, nice < niais < nescius := not-skilled. Jewish means religion (actually sect, where Abrahamist the religion) whereas Israelite means state, Hebrew nation, Semite race, Ashkenazi tribe. Who is a "folk"?
I'd think the dark skin at far latitudes forfends snowburn. Polar bears are black.
Your idea of Medieval Europe is darker than the reality. It was possibly more pluralistic than modern societies, and plenty of people lived out their lives in peace and love. Most people could read and write, and quite a few could read Latin. While no two people can know that they believe the same thing, and probably don't, it still makes sense to have words for broad categories of belief. There were Christians in Europe.Delete
All languages, including African languages, associate blackness and darkness with evil, and whiteness and light with good. The reason is simple enough. The night has been the most dangerous time for humans, since before we were humans. There have been murderous beasts out there, exploiting our night blindness. The day has been the safest time. We have had good sight, and the predators have rested. At the same time, some people have darker skin and others have lighter skin, as a matter of pure fact. The idea of these things being connected is racism; the mere use of one word to mean several things is not. If it was, every African culture would have to be branded as rabid with anti-black racism.
The fact is that, unlike you, people of pre-imperial Europe didn't give a flying shit about skin color, beyond the purely descriptive use.
If just one English speaker believes that two words have the exact same meaning, then synonyms are a reality, as a language is defined by its speakers. If someone uses two words in exactly the same way, then interpreting that person as if the words have distinct meanings will be a misinterpretation; it'll result in a failure to communicate. There's no quarreling with this.
I don't think you know what a "snowburn" is, but will assume that you're talking about sunburn from reflected sunlight. I'm as white as anyone, living at a latitude with plenty of snow. If I tried to get a sunburn in winter, I would fail miserably. On a glacier, in summer, I would undoubtedly succeed spectacularly, but no one lives on a glacier, so it's irrelevant. Polar bears have colorless fur, that appears white. It leads sunlight to their skin, which is black, and converts the light to heat. They get vitamin D from their food. Meanwhile, chimpanzees are actually white, as were probably our early ancestors, before they lost their fur and moved onto the savanna. You don't want to be hairless and white on the African savanna.
Weasel words and delusions are all you still got?Delete
I googled medieval Europe literacy rate:
"It is assumed the literacy rate during the Dark Ages were around 4% to 6%."
"It has been estimated that "in the later Middle Ages out of the total population 10 per cent of men and 1 per cent of women were literate." Most men were very hostile to the idea of women becoming literate. Women who were nuns were the most likely to be literate."
Nothing that has contradicted my impressions.
"most" means more than half. Your outriht lige is something I'd expect to hear in a sermon/homily. I disproved your belief that there were Kristians. My premise is Scriptural, Jesuist, whereas yours likely Paulist.
No support that "all" languages associate color with morals, or even with morals thus. Nor were your comparisons/contrasts well put: it's blank:black::white:wan::liht:shade::brihtness:darkness::good:bad::holy:evil.
1. black person
1. elative degree of سَيِّد (sayyid):
1. more liberal, more generous; most liberal, most generous
2. nobler, more high-born; noblest, most high-born
3. wiser; wisest
1. (Bohairic) black
1. black (color)
1. luminous, lucid; bright
2. shining, brilliant
3. lighted, illuminated, brightly lit
4. clear, plain
1. dark, becoming dark (lack of light)
2. black, becoming black (lack of light)
3. intensely dark, intensely black
4. (figuratively) very evil
(Qharabihh has Zoroastrian substrate which explains sense 4. But this is irrelevant to native African—Nzeran: Bantu and San—concepts.)
ǃkxʻôe ń bí dtʻkxʻái.
The rain is dark, i.e. the sky is dark with rain.
ǀ`a̰li ń bí dtʻkxʻái.
The wildebeest are dark, i.e. numerous.
ʘàje ń kâ dtʻkxʻái.
The meat is dark, i.e. rotten.
That's all the Wiktionary entries I could find. I already heard that hue associations with feelings weren't universal, especially by longitudinal divide. Also that some cultures took concepts quite literally and narrowly. For every made-up association of yours between seeing and security, there are opposites like the destruction of fire and the comfort of niht. You're still theist, yes? Which means you take your belief/imagination as fact and hav no clue how to determine whether something is so or not.
pure = clean -> sheer = absolute
English has been dead for 1000 years sith Norman Conquest; everyone talks in "Einglish" now with loanwords and slang. One person doesn't determine a national language; not even hundreds do. The failure in communication is a contradiction between senses (abuses) of a word so that the usage can't be perfectly known. Which is why there are registers and code switching, if there are words with fewer senses.
"snowburn" was a pun. Your latitude doesn't much matter if you don't see the sun most of the day. Polar bears don't liv on glaciers either so you're irrelevant.
would (desiderative) -> should (expective)
Well that was mostly nonsense. I'd apologize for not checking back in for such a long time, but I see I didn't miss much...Delete
Name one god of the night or darkness, that was/is not also god of chaos or war. Name one god of the sun or moon, that wasn't a god of good things. I can name plenty who was/is, for both categories, from Norse paganism, through ancient Egyptian mythology, to Australian aboriginal pantheism.
The fact is, the night has always been scary for all humans, everywhere. We need light; without it, we're blind, and vision is our primary sense.
I wrote no nonsense, halfwit.Delete
Nut. (She came to mind immediately.). Nott was also okay.
Moon is actually as dark as coal but has so much to reflect. My point is that one needs both briht and dark; each has no use. Without nonliht you’re blind, what’ll happen if you only stare at Sun. Moons and stars were/are used to tell time and had they been eclipses of the day sky they’d also be venerated. The full moon is when lunatics and criminals come out, when they can see the best.
Heru/Horus was a violent arsehole god of Sun snd Moon.
Nice to read your article. As a white (whatever that means, in my case Scotch-Irish and Jewish), middle-aged male, with a hobby of learning languages, mostly, yes, medieval European ones, primarily because I started where my familiarity lay (English) and branched outwards from there (French, German, Old English, Dutch, Latin), I'd learn every language if I could, but I am alas a bear of very little brain. I arrived late in reading the transcripts of this controversy.ReplyDelete
I doubt I could add much new to the discussion, except (of course, except!) noting that I see scant reference (in the discussion at large) to the difference between causation and correlation, which I believe to be relevant, or to basic biological principles, which I also believe to be relevant.
For causation and correlation, the way I would state it conversationally is that yes, certainly, 'white' supremacists (who clearly are out there as such) will latch onto 'white' medieval studies ('white' in quotes because I find it fascinating that our racial identifiers are so coarse, not just for white but for 'hispanic', 'black', 'asian', and so on), and so there is correlation. If one is a 'white' supremacist, there is an increased tendency to support the position by recourse to 'white' European history. It doesn't mean that the corpus of literature causes these supremacist positions. Undoubtedly, to my mind, the literature embodies every viewpoint, and those that co-opt it for their own purposes cherry pick what they like and disregard the rest.
Causation would be that the field of 'white' European studies itself generates 'white' supremacy. While I see this alluded to in the transcripts of the exchanges, it is never dealt with satisfactorily, in a non-handwaving manner. Even in the old English classroom, I see this supposed racism on the part of mostly 19th century, frequently German, authors, referred to as a given, without justification. One gets the feeling, 'case closed'. Certainly the Nazis used some of these writings, but if the Nazis had never existed (would that it could have been so, even though it most manifestly was not), would we continue to have the bias that these writings themselves were somehow to blame? I am referring here to authors such as the Grimm brothers, and many other German philologists (Holthausen and others) as well as those influenced by them (Helfenstein and others). Obviously the Nazis did set a precedent for this type of misuse (to the ultimate harm of the very race they were trying so desperately to preserve), but I see their doings as an exemplar of the correlative relation; of course they would seize upon whatever they could to support their viewpoint.
On to the other topic I never see mentioned, basic biology. Sorry folks, but we are animals. We have habitats. It is true that humans have succeeded in partially escaping our animal nature, at least in terms of habitat, by our remarkable ability to create artificial ones, but we can never escape entirely. 'white' is a biological adaptation. I am not knowledgeable enough to state exactly what that adaptation is, except that clearly Northern Europe supports it (up to a point, for example at extreme latitudes the skin is normally dark again). In some way, shape, or form, all the other skin pigmentations are also biological adaptations. I fail to see how skin color and culture are necessarily linked (again, causation and correlation). 'white' encompasses all kinds of cultures, that share only a habitat specialization. The same of course is true of 'black' and all the other colors. Put a pygmy side by side with a Masai and ask if you think they are one and the same? To a pygmy (sad to say, almost all gone now), the 6' tall neighbours are as if from another world.
No words. Just mesmerized.ReplyDelete