Daily Archives: May 30, 2022

BUSINESS BEYOND – Exploring the global economy in depth

[From:] “Global Balliol,” Floreat Domus, (June 2022).

Tim Weiskel

As human beings we live within a planetary ecosystem that we did not create, cannot control and must not destroy. Moreover, it seems that Earth is the only life-supporting planet in the known universe. This is a sobering fact about the precariousness of our place in space.

Yet, even more disturbing is the fact that in spite of all we now know about our vulnerable circumstance and despite our very best intentions, the social, economic and political institutions of our contemporary world are committed to operate – in their ‘default mode’ – so as to destroy the prospects for our future survival within the constraints of Earth’s ecosystem.

The institutions of which we are so proud and like to think we can control have in reality taken control of our behavior as a species. This is particularly troubling because these institutions are founded in law and in practice upon the principle of promoting perpetual growth and continued human expansion.

The trouble is – as ecologists have pointed out long ago – that this growth will not persist for any species in a finite ecosystem. It is a basic law of biological systems that no organism within them can grow without limit without destroying the system itself.

…(read more).

[For the current scientific understanding of the severity and disruptive social impact of global climate change see:]

Setting-the-Record-straight

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Slavery in the Age of Revolution

View this in the online Zeen format from ISSUU:

See related:

Global Balliol

As human beings we live within a planetary ecosystem that we did not create, cannot control and must not destroy. Moreover, it seems that Earth is the only life-supporting planet in the known universe. This is a sobering fact about the precariousness of our place in space.

Yet, even more disturbing is the fact that in spite of all we now know about our vulnerable circumstance and despite our very best intentions, the social, economic and political institutions of our contemporary world are committed to operate – in their ‘default mode’ – so as to destroy the prospects for our future survival within the constraints of Earth’s ecosystem.

The institutions of which we are so proud and like to think we can control have in reality taken control of our behavior as a species. This is particularly troubling because these institutions are founded in law and in practice upon the principle of promoting perpetual growth and continued human expansion.

The trouble is – as ecologists have pointed out long ago – that this growth will not persist for any species in a finite ecosystem. It is a basic law of biological systems that no organism within them can grow without limit without destroying the system itself.

Starkly put, then, the question is simply this: can humans survive the anthropocene? Can we repurpose with sufficient speed our institutions so as to assure human continuity, rather than accelerate our demise? If we fail to redirect them away from their default modes of perpetual growth no amount of technological wizardry will spare us from the system-wide collapse towards which our global agriculture is now headed.

…(read more).

Forests of Gold: Essays on the Akan and the Kingdom of Asante: Ivor Wilks

Forests of Gold is a collection of essays on the peoples of Ghana with particular reference to the most powerful of all their kingdoms: Asante. Beginning with the global and local conditions under which Akan society assumed its historic form between the fifteenth and seventeenth centuries, these essays go on to explore various aspects of Asante culture: conceptions of wealth, of time and motion, and the relationship between the unborn, the living, and the dead. The final section is focused upon individuals and includes studies of generals, of civil administrators, and of one remarkable woman who, in 1831, successfully negotiated peace treaties with the British and the Danes on the Gold Coast. The author argues that contemporary developments can only be fully understood against the background of long-term trajectories of change in Ghana.

Reviews
“Wilks’ writing here is as informed, engaged and questing as ever.”—African Affairs

“Wilks is willing to take risks, and even make mistakes, for the sake of opening discussion and expanding knowledge…Forests of Gold is impressive history. One comes away awed at the level of historical reconstruction Wilks has accomplished, demonstrating a level of analysis that has not been achieved regarding almost any other precolonial African state, and which has been achieved here because of Wilks’s forty years of commitment, sensitivity, integrity, and belief in the profession of history and the history of African peoples.”—The International Journal of African Historical Studies

“Wilks’ contribution to our understanding of the history of Asante and that of other Akan-speaking peoples is incalculable. It is evident not only in his own work but in that of the published research of the many talented students he has directed during a long, fruitful career.”—Journal of African History

About the Author

Ivor Wilks is a leading scholar and teacher of African History whose contributions include path-breaking research on Asante. He has published many books and articles on West African government, politics, society, culture, and religion. Wilks retired from Northwestern University where he was the Melville J. Herskovits Professor of African Studies in 1993.

  • Publisher‏ : ‎ Ohio University Press; 1st edition (November 1, 1995)
  • Language‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback‏ : ‎ 408 pages
  • ISBN-10‏ : ‎ 0821411357
  • ISBN-13‏ : ‎ 978-0821411353
  • Lexile measure ‏ : ‎ 1500L
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.43 pounds
  • Dimensions‏ : ‎ 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches