A growing body of mortality research on immigrants has shown that the longer they live in the United States, the worse their rates of heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes.
“The big secret about the golden age of ‘male providers’ is that it never existed. First, women have always worked. Second, and just as importantly, there have always been men who were too poor, too queer, too sensitive, too disabled, too compassionate or simply too clever to submit to whatever model of ‘masculinity’ society relied upon to keep its wars fought and its factories staffed. ‘Traditional masculinity,’ like ‘traditional femininity,’ is a form of social control, and seeking to reassert that control is no answer to a generation of young men who are quietly drowning in a world that doesn’t seem to want them.”
A map of the world’s most and least racially-tolerant countries. Read the methodology of the study, and its conclusion, here. The analysis was as follows:
- Anglo and Latin countries most tolerant. People in the survey were most likely to embrace a racially diverse neighbor in the United Kingdom and its Anglo former colonies (the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand) and in Latin America. The only real exceptions were oil-rich Venezuela, where income inequality sometimes breaks along racial lines, and the Dominican Republic, perhaps because of its adjacency to troubled Haiti. Scandinavian countries also scored high.
- India, Jordan, Bangladesh and Hong Kong by far the least tolerant.In only three of 81 surveyed countries, more than 40 percent of respondents said they would not want a neighbor of a different race. This included 43.5 percent of Indians, 51.4 percent of Jordanians and an astonishingly high 71.8 percent of Hong Kongers and 71.7 percent of Bangladeshis.
- Wide, interesting variation across Europe. Immigration and national identity are big, touchy issues in much of Europe, where racial make-ups are changing. Though you might expect the richer, better-educated Western European nations to be more tolerant than those in Eastern Europe, that’s not exactly the case. France appeared to be one of the least racially tolerant countries on the continent, with 22.7 percent saying they didn’t want a neighbor of another race. Former Soviet states such as Belarus and Latvia scored as more tolerant than much of Europe. Many in the Balkans, perhaps after years of ethnicity-tinged wars, expressed lower racial tolerance.
- The Middle East not so tolerant. Immigration is also a big issue in this region, particularly in Egypt and Saudi Arabia, which often absorb economic migrants from poorer neighbors.
- Racial tolerance low in diverse Asian countries. Nations such as Indonesia and the Philippines, where many racial groups often jockey for influence and have complicated histories with one another, showed more skepticism of diversity. This was also true, to a lesser extent, in China and Kyrgyzstan. There were similar trends in parts of sub-Saharan Africa.
- South Korea, not very tolerant, is an outlier. Although the country is rich, well-educated, peaceful and ethnically homogenous – all trends that appear to coincide with racial tolerance – more than one in three South Koreans said they do not want a neighbor of a different race. This may have to do with Korea’s particular view of its own racial-national identity as unique – studied by scholars such as B.R. Myers – and with the influx of Southeast Asian neighbors and the nation’s long-held tensions with Japan.
- Pakistan, remarkably tolerant, also an outlier. Although the country has a number of factors that coincide with racial intolerance – sectarian violence, its location in the least-tolerant region of the world, low economic and human development indices – only 6.5 percent of Pakistanis objected to a neighbor of a different race. This would appear to suggest Pakistanis are more racially tolerant than even the Germans or the Dutch.
Note that there are many caveats to keep in mind: for example, different societies have different perceptions of race (certain social, religious, and sectarian groups may be perceived unfavorably as distinct races) or may have no concept of race at all. Similarly, there is a difference between actually liking someone of a certain race, and being willing to live near them. Many national surveys from these countries will reveal strong racist attitudes in conjunction with a begrudging ability to tolerate said races.
Even Socrates lamented that each newer generation was more narcissistic and troubled than the previous. The problem is not related to any particular generation, but to age: young people generally tend to have these issues before they grow older. Young folks nowadays are basically no different than the older folks were at the same age.
Of course, I don’t doubt that each generation has its own unique problems and challenges of course, but we’re not any more likely to turn out worse than the generations before — except through the policies and misgovernance of the mostly old folks influencing our economic future.
Charles Ramsey, the man who helped rescue three Cleveland women presumed dead after going missing a decade ago, has become an instant Internet meme. Its hardly surprising: the interviews he gave yesterday provide plenty of fodder for a viral video, including memorable sound bites (I was eatin’ my McDonalds) and lots of enthusiastic…
“The person who is at 175 pounds after a huge weight loss now has a completely different physical makeup from the person who is naturally 175 — exercise benefits them less, calories are more readily stored as fat, the impulse to eat occurs far, far more often. The formerly fat person can exercise ten times the willpower of the never-fat guy, and still wind up fat again. The impulses are simply more frequent, and stronger, and the physical consequences of giving in are more severe. The people who successfully do it are the ones who become psychologically obsessive about it…”
This argument may seem spurious to a lot of people, but I have read many reports suggesting that weight gain isn’t, strictly speaking, a matter of simple willpower. There are a range of social, environmental, and psychological factors that complicate matters. In any case, as a former obese person, I could certainly relate with the above quote.
The problem is that a lot of our life today is transactional. I just bought something from Amazon.com, and there was nobody there, so to speak. It was just credit cards and button clicks. If you go to the supermarket today,the laser system tells you what the price is and the checker bags it for you. In the old days it might be, “Oh you bought a lot of spaghetti. Do you have sauce for that?” There’s no feeling that the checker is a partner in this experience of buying something.
I have this example of what I call the hardware store hammer: A woman is in a hardware store and picks up a hammer. When she is checking out, the shop owner says, “What are you going to use this hammer for?” And she says, “My husband told me to buy a hammer. We’re putting up some pictures in the kitchen.” The owner might say, “Okay. But this is a professional carpenter’s hammer. For your purpose, that one over there would do just fine, and it’s a third the price.” That’s the difference between a relationship and a transaction. If you have a concern for other people doing well for themselves, then I think you want this level of honesty. But our society might be losing that.
If one comes away from the Boston bombings ready to single out a particular ethnic or religious group as a special domestic threat, be reminded that the majority of mass-killings in this country have been perpetrated by young, American-born white males. If we’re going to be wary of immigrants, Muslims, Chechens, Russians (who are often confused for Chechens), or some other minority group, we might as well fear about half the country. Of course, our minds are innately biased in favor of simple narratives, so it’s much easier and more reflexive to focus on a small and easily identifiable group — especially when one’s sense of safety is concerned. This is not an excuse of course, for its a visceral feeling that we must move past.
Sex apparently is like income: People are generally happy when they keep pace with the Joneses and they’re even happier if they get a bit more.
That’s one finding of Tim Wadsworth, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Colorado Boulder, who recently published the results of a study of how sexual frequency corresponds with happiness.
As has been well documented with income, the happiness linked with having more sex can rise or fall depending on how individuals believe they measure up to their peers, Wadsworth found.
His paper, “Sex and the Pursuit of Happiness: How Other People’s Sex Lives are Related to Our Sense of Well-Being,” was published in the February edition of Social Indicators Research.
Using national survey data and statistical analyses, Wadsworth found that people reported steadily higher levels of happiness as they reported steadily higher sexual frequency. But he also found that even after controlling for their own sexual frequency, people who believed they were having less sex than their peers were unhappier than those who believed they were having as much or more than their peers.
“There’s an overall increase in sense of well-being that comes with engaging in sex more frequently, but there’s also this relative aspect to it,” he said. “Having more sex makes us happy, but thinking that we are having more sex than other people makes us even happier.
It turns out the reasons men fake it are actually pretty similar to the reasons that women fake it. In their minds — and we can argue whether or not it’s productive thing to do — but in their minds, it’s actually a form of kindness. They’re kind of letting the other person know that they’ve done a good job. In this particular case in the book, this guy had trouble having an orgasm during intercourse, but it had never bothered him before. He’s felt like a stud. The problem happened when he fell in love. Once he got his feelings involved, he became concerned that she was feeling bad about her own feminine charms and skills, and so to solve that for her he started to fake it.
I’d also imagine it has something to do with the fact that many men tie their masculinity and self-esteem to their sexual performance, and would feel embarrassed if they failed to deliver. I’d like to read this book for myself to judge the claims and research.
Source: Barna Group
Only 2% to 5% of all books published in the United States come from a non-English source. While some foreign authors publish their works in English, most of them don’t, which means we’re totally unexposed to the overwhelming majority of the world’s literature.
US publishers claim that translations would cost too much, and that Americans aren’t interested in foreign literature.
But this raises an issue of causality: is this lack of interest the reason why publishers don’t bother translating non-English material? Or is it the lack of such publishing that causes or facilitates of our disinterest?
I suspect it is a little bit of both. Furthermore, one could argue that this is a consequence of our cultural and political hegemony: American culture is ubiquitous across the world, while comparatively little of the world’s culture makes inroads here (at least not in the mainstream). Perhaps this is because our dominant position in the world (real or perceived) makes learning about other cultures seem redundant or unnecessary. Our geographic size and relative isolation also presumably breeds a sense of insularity.
Regardless, I find this very unfortunate — though all the more reason to learn a foreign language. The free exchange of ideas, insights, and concepts — many of which exist only certain cultures and languages — is vital to a free and prosperous society.
Is feminism an elitist preoccupation? A new British study argues that feminism here has failed working-class women by focusing obsessively on equality in the boardroom and the faltering race to break the glass ceiling.