The Woman as Outcast: An Examination of Miaoshan in The Precious Scroll of Incense Mountain in Light of Choice, Risk, and Martyrdom

Lianna Arcelay

University of Georgia (Athens, GA)

 

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Precious Scroll of Incense Mountain (Baidu)

The tale of Miaoshan exemplifies that a woman’s devotion to religion—or, more specifically, her moral self-cultivation through religion—induces her being cast out of the society she inhabits. This paper seeks to expound on the Christ-like characteristics Miaoshan embodies in the first narrative of The Precious Scroll of Incense Mountain. It additionally discusses the manner in which her father, the emperor, Continue reading

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Codifying Discrimination: The Status of Women, Slaves and Freedmen in the Ancient Near East

Graham Dunbar

St. Norbert College (De Pere, Wisconsin)

 

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figure at the top of Code of Hammurabi stele. Wiki

Writings from several thousand years ago in the Ancient Near East have the potential to give us fascinating insight into humanity’s baser instincts and values, allowing us to track the progress of “Western Civilization” from its source.  Countless law codes stress the idea of proportional retribution, especially in the case of violent crimes.  It is evident in these documents, particularly the ancient Babylonian Code of Hammurabi, that this retribution was primarily reserved for free-born adult men and that penalties for crimes against women, while not negligible, were considerably more lenient.  It is also evident in these documents that slavery in Ancient Near Continue reading

Voltaire’s Critique of Organized Religion in Candide

Fatima Khan

Wesleyan College (Macon, Georgia)

 

voltaire1

Candide, Penguin Classic, 1947

Voltaire expressed his contempt towards organized religion and its disregard for human suffering in his famous satirical novel, Candide.  He targeted Leibnitz’s teaching that  “all is for the best” by creating characters that fall into miserable situations and face both internal and external strife by attempting to fit it into the church’s world view.[1] The only place free from Voltaire’s critiques was a made up New World town known as El Dorado where the only religion is an appreciation for life and nature.[2] El Dorado represented Voltaire’s perfect society  and provided insight into how he would have preferred society in Europe to be structured. Even though efforts to reform the Church were brought forward through Calvinism and the Council of Trent, Voltaire shows disdain for the major principles of organized religion in the 18th Continue reading

The Menkaure Triad, Numerical Thinking, and Divine Configurations in Ancient Egypt

Wen Li Teng

The University of Chicago

 

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The Menkaure Triad, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

In the numerical thinking of the ancient Egyptians, numbers served as a system of classification that was simple, but permitted complex thematic variations in the concepts of unity, difference, and plurality.[1] The number three, for example, was considered the plural par excellence, and triads of gods were used to express familial relations (e.g. Osiris-Isis-Horus), modality (e.g. Khephri-Re-Atum), and unity (e.g. Amun-Re-Ptah).[2] The statue of King Menkaure (of the Old Kingdom, Dynasty 4), the goddess Hathor, and the deified Hare nome is one such triad (Boston MFA 09.200). The statue was one of many excavated by George Andrew Reisner in 1908 in the temple of Menkaure’s funerary complex at Giza.[3] The triad reveals the power structure of the Old Kingdom, exemplifies the religious beliefs of Continue reading

Education and Government in the Eyes of a Confucian Scholar in Modern China

liudapengEditorial Introduction

In times of rapid socio-political changes, individuals accustomed to the old ways of life are left scrambling to find a new place within a new system that bears nothing in common with what they once knew. The Man Awakened from Dreams: One Man’s Life in a North China Village, 1857-1942 by Henrietta Harrison is the case study of Liu Dapeng, a Confucian scholar who experienced the extreme changes brought on by the fall of the Qing Dynasty and rise of the Chinese Republic in the early 1900s. Liu Dapeng witnessed the replacement of traditional Chinese institutions with Westernized ones. This collection focuses primarily on the themes of education and Continue reading

Hotel Rwanda: A Twisted Perception

Ashley Burton

Young Harris College (Young Harris, GA)

 

hotelHistorians, philosophers, political scientists, and social activists have long analyzed how American media represents political and social events in order to support various governmental policies and stances. Whether it be through literature, news, or the filmed adaptations of a certain event, discrepancies are bound to be discovered when pulling from multiple sources in order to create an American approved version of events. In 2004, Terry George directed and released Hotel Rwanda, a movie that follows the life of hotel owner Paul Rusesabagina and his efforts to save members of the Tutsi community during the Rwandan Genocide. The film was highly criticized for its inaccurate Continue reading

The Master’s Teachings Are Not Far: The Analects of Confucius and Its Modern Relevance

Editorial Introduction

kongzi2The Analects of Confucius is believed to have been written by his disciples around 2500 years ago, and has remained one of the most influential texts in China to this day. This text was written in order to provide people with the teachings of Confucius. His disciples did this by writing down their questions along with the answers that Confucius gave them. In this series of questions and answers various terms that Confucius believed people should live according to are continuously referred to. What is the Dao the master was pursuing? How to become a junzi or superior man? Are the Confucian values such as filial piety and trustworthiness still relevant today? Is Confucius’s political goal still meaningful? The three papers here are contributed by students from HIST 3200 Traditional China, an upper-level history course taught by Dr. Hongjie Wang at Armstrong in the spring semester of 2017. These authors try to answer the aforementioned questions from their respective perspectives based on their reading of the ancient text. Continue reading