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Looking for Love in Small Religion

Looking for Love in Small Religion | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Think modern dating is tough? Try hunting for a husband or wife in the Druze community—adherents are forbidden from marrying outside of the faith. This desire to marry someone within the faith is not just a preference—the religion prohibits exogamy. If a Druze marries a non-Druze, it will not be a Druze wedding, nor can the couple’s children be Druze—the religion can only be passed on through birth to two Druze parents. There are no conversions into the Druze faith."

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Jordanian parliament repeals rape law

Jordanian parliament repeals rape law | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The Jordanian parliament voted on Tuesday to abolish a provision in the penal code that allows rapists to escape punishment if they marry their victims - a move that is being hailed as 'historic' by activists and locals. Article 308 permit[ed] pardoning rape perpetrators if they marry their victims and stay with them for at least three years.  The controversial provision has for decades divided Jordan between those who believe the law is necessary to protect women's 'honour', and others who see it as a violation of basic human rights."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Cultural norms and political practices are so often intertwined that understanding local laws means that one has to understand the cultural context within which they were created, and in this case, the cultural processes that led to a political will to change them.  

 

Tagsculture, cultural norms, gender, MiddleEast, Jordan, political.

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Treathyl Fox's curator insight, 3 August 2017, 14:57
This is major for womens' rights.
David G Tibbs's curator insight, 22 March 2018, 16:54
It's amazing how these laws can even exist in today's global society. The law itself is a violation of human rights by making someone who is harmed to before attached to the person that harmed them. It's also shocking some of the countries that have abolished similar laws only within the last 30 years. Countries like Italy, Romania, France, and Peru to name a few. This is not just a continuing issue in the middle east but also in areas in Latin America and in Asia. Hopefully, countries will follow suit, which will take a major change in culture and thought. It will also take a major amount of energy from the people in those countries to change these laws.
 
Katie Kershaw's curator insight, 27 March 2018, 16:39
The original reason that this law was put into practice was the most interesting part of the article.  The law stated that men who raped women would not be punished if they married their victim.  It was said that the law protected women from the stigma surrounding rape, especially if they became pregnant.  It’s hard to tell if lawmakers were genuinely concerned with women’s well-beings or if they were just looking for a way to prevent men from being punished and just disguising it as beneficial to women.  The law was in place for about 60 years and was approved to repeal by a very slim majority.  This is a step in making Jordan a more progressive country that respects human rights, however they are still far from having gender equality.  It was upsetting to me that I had never heard of this law before it was introduced to me in class because it shows that the U.S. and media don’t pay attention to such violations of human rights.  It was also crazy to me that it took until 2017 for the law to be repealed, but even more shocking that it was put into place just 60 years ago.  If I didn’t know the history of it, I would have assumed it was some ancient law.
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The Supreme Court just legalized same-sex marriage across the US

The Supreme Court just legalized same-sex marriage across the US | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The Supreme Court's decision means marriage equality is now the law of the land in the US. But whether states allow same-sex couples to marry immediately or days or weeks from now will depend on the actions of local and state officials, who could delay the final effect of the decision for a few days or weeks."


Tags: sexuality, USA, mappolitical.

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Jannell Alino's curator insight, 28 August 2015, 00:20

On June 26, 2015 the Supreme Court ruled that same sex marriage would be legal in all fifty states. This was a majority vote that now requires all states to grant marriage licenses to all couples whether they are same sex or not. Before this day Washington D.C. as well as 37 other states allowed same sex marriage. This decision was years in the making and has been long waited for by many. There were many factors that went into deciding if this should be made legal like discrimination. Although it is now legal to have same sex marriage in all states not all states are open to this idea. Many states are still not granting marriage licenses although all citizens have the right to. Some generalizations that can be retrieved from this article is that the Supreme Court is making strides in passing laws that have been needed for many decades. They are finally making progress with addressing our countries current problems. Yes this argument is logical except for the states that are still refusing to grant licenses to same sex couples. This relates because it affects our entire country and shows that we are not as conservative anymore. I am 100% supportive of this decision and believe that it great that after several decades of fighting for the right to marry they finally have it! It is objective and appeals to everyone, not just one group of people.  

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Why Rachel Dolezal Has Us Talking About Race

"Everyone and their mom has an opinion about former NAACP chapter president Rachel Dolezal. We break down the arguments for you."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Her individual story might not warrant the attention it is getting, but it is challenging many people's very notion of race and other categories (or axes) of identity--and that is worth discussing.


Tags: culturerace.

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Did You Know It's Legal In Most States To Discriminate Against LGBT People?

The Supreme Court debates same-sex marriage Tuesday. But in many states, a person can marry someone of the same gender and still be fired for being gay.


Tags: sexuality, USA, mappolitical.

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Cultural Politics

Cultural Politics | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A state-by-state look at our cultural politics.
Seth Dixon's insight:

While this doesn't say everything about the state of cultural politics in the United States, it does lay out some of the more ideologically charged debates in the new political landscape after the midterm electionsWhat does this Venn diagram say about the state of cultural politics in your state?   The Courts have aided the push for same sex marriages; will that also occur for marijuana legalization?


Tags: narcotics, sexuality, USA, electoral, political.

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More than half of all Americans live in states where same-sex marriage is legal

More than half of all Americans live in states where same-sex marriage is legal | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"More than 168 million Americans now live in states where marriage for same-sex couples is legal following the Supreme Court’s decision Monday to not hear five states’ appeals.  That number represents about 53.17 percent of the U.S. population, according to data from the Census Bureau and visualized on the map above."


Tags: sexuality, USA. regions, mappolitical.

Seth Dixon's insight:

UPDATE: As of November 20, 2014 this is now the new map of same-sex marriage in the United States.  Notice that all the states that oppose same-sex marriage are part of one single, territorially contiguous block of states.  How come that is the spatial pattern for this issue?    

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Julia Keenan's curator insight, 8 October 2014, 00:57

Shows states that allow same sex marriage or have laws for or against them

Nevermore Sithole's curator insight, 14 October 2014, 09:29

Concept of Human Rights in USA

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Eastern and Western Europe divided over gay marriage, homosexuality

Eastern and Western Europe divided over gay marriage, homosexuality | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Recent developments in Croatia and Scotland highlight a stark divide between Eastern and Western Europe on the topic of same-sex marriage.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Regions are fluid constructs that we use to think about places.  The region that we think of today as "Latin America" would not have been a discrete region 600 years ago since historical events have shaped the geographic evolution of the attributes of the region and the borders of world regions will continue to be redrawn.  Some have recently argued that since the end of the Cold War, the monikers Eastern and Western Europe are less meaningful in an economic context.   This map shows this old division can still be seen in this cultural/political context.  Some have argued that Russia's recent move against gay rights is a geopolitical strategy to differentiate themselves from the West. 


TagsEurope, regions.

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Alyssa Dorr's curator insight, 16 December 2014, 23:14

Of course everyone has their different views on gay marriage. It is always a topic that gets a lot of discussion and debate. This map highlights a divide between Eastern and Western Europe on the issue of same-sex marriage. In Western Europe, many nations have made same-sex marriage legal. However, other nations are opposing to such actions. According to this map, the darkest blue represents the highest percentage of people in each country who agree with same-sex marriage. As the shades of blue get lighter, this represents less and less people who believe in same-sex marriage. According to a survey taken in May of 2013, Spain, Belgium, Germany, and The Netherlands were in strong agreement for gay marriage. Relatively few people in Poland and Hungary were supportive of same-sex marriage. The cross-continental divide has led to talk about whether the Netherlands might grant asylum to gay and lesbian Russians seeking to escape that country’s anti-homosexual “propaganda” law. This was a measure passed this past June by a 436-0 vote in the Russian parliament.

Jason Schneider's curator insight, 12 February 2015, 23:19

It makes sense that the western side of Europe agree that homosexuals should have their rights because I believe that since most of the eastern part the United States passed the laws of same-sex marriage, it was able to spread overseas directly towards Europe. However, homosexual rights agreement have yet to spread throughout the eastern side of Europe. According to rt.com, 85% of Russia's population are against homosexuality. So with that being said, homosexuality freedom is agreed mostly in the United States/Atlantic Ocean/Western Europe range.

Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, 6 May 2015, 14:55

This map shows the different degrees of acceptance of homosexuality among European countries. Just by looking at the map, you can see that there is a clear divide between Western and Eastern European thoughts on homosexuality. Western European countries seem to be much more accepting and tolerant of homosexuality than their Eastern counterparts. 

 

This speaks to two major factors that divide Europe in general: religion and politics. Many of the countries that have low tolerance for homosexuality are former parts of the USSR. Having been formerly aligned with the strict and intolerant ideologies of Communism, it is not surprising that these countries would not accept homosexuality or support gay marriage. Though the West is certainly not a paragon of tolerance itself, it can at least be seen as more tolerant relative to the former Soviet Socialist Republics. Therefore, it is not a stretch to imagine that they may be more accepting of homosexuality than those former members of the USSR. Eastern Europe is also an area largely dominated by Orthodox Christianity, a stricter form of Christianity than what one would find in the Protestant denominations of the West. Some Western European countries also have large atheist populations. This is not to say that atheists are automatically more accepting, but to assume some correlation between tolerance and a rejection of moral governance by religion would not be unreasonable. So though this map shows only how different countries stand on the acceptance of homosexuality, it can also be used to show the religious and political divides that exist within Europe. 

 

 

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How That Red Equal Sign Took Over Facebook

How That Red Equal Sign Took Over Facebook | Geography Education | Scoop.it
It seemed like most people were changing their Facebook profile pictures to the Human Rights Campaign's symbol for equality -- that red equal sign -- this week as the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in two cases concerning same-sex marriage.
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McSpocky's curator insight, 6 July 2013, 02:50

Wow, looks like the south didn't like it very well...

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The Body in Public Space

The Body in Public Space | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Here are some seemingly eclectic topics.  All of them center around the appropriateness of the body being displayed publicly and the cultural norms that shape how we think about the issue.  I've included a sensational restroom, public nursing, top-free protests, and of course, the Kate Middleton scandal.


Tags: culture, popular culture, gender, place, space.

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Victoria Morgia Jamolod-Umbo's comment, 26 September 2012, 15:11
Hilarious! The breasts of women are human parts of a woman which should be respected because it is where a human being feeds. It is a symbol of life.
Don Brown Jr's comment, 1 October 2012, 01:07
This cartoon clearly shows how breast are sexually marketed in our society and how we will can accept the fashionably sexual display of breast in public yet consider breast feeding offensive. In many ways this cartoon seems to show how some social norms seem to interfere with common sense as we should be more critical of the sexual advertisement of breast while breast feeding on the other hand should at the very least be tolerated.
Matthew DiLuglio's curator insight, 12 October 2013, 23:37

I think the men who prohibit public breast-feeding of babies should be starved.  I have a baby cousin, whom I love dearly, and I would hate to delay his lunch as much as anyone else would hate to have their own lunches delayed.  To prohibit public-breastfeeding is cruel, discriminatory, and hypocritical, as these prohibitors were likely publicly breastfed at some point in their infant days.  A message overall about other people acting 'scandelously'- get over it.  Grow up.  I don't like having to hear from or about you, and it takes away from my definition of a perfect world when I see people starving my baby cousin.  Culture should accomodate to the entirety of the population, not a majority.  After all, as for babies- we've all been there, and as for old people- we'd be lucky to live that long, but we'll llikely be there too.  I don't think we should be governed by someone that some people elect and other people don't vote for, because it's really not fair... it would be better and a compromise to not be governed at all!  So don't be critical, be understanding... Peace and Love!

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NYTimes: Older to Wed, If They Marry at All

NYTimes: Older to Wed, If They Marry at All | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The median age of first marriage is at an all-time high, according to a new report from Pew Research Center based on census data.

 

Clearly the marrying patterns of Americans have dramatically changed since 1960.  What cultural impacts are changing these patterns?  What economic factors are shaping marriage decisions?  How does this change demographic patterns?  Society as a whole?  http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2011/12/14/barely-half-of-u-s-adults-are-married-a-record-low/ for more information on these patterns.  

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Pakistan's traditional third gender isn't happy with the trans movement

Pakistan's traditional third gender isn't happy with the trans movement | Geography Education | Scoop.it
For centuries, South Asia has had its own Khawaja Sira or third gender culture. Now, some third gender people in Pakistan say the modern transgender identity is threatening their ancient culture.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Sometimes our assumptions about a society, and how they might react to cultural issues are just that...assumptions.  I for one was very surprised to learn that Pakistan had a traditional third gender. 

 

Tags: culture, developmentpodcast, genderPakistansexuality, South Asia, religion.

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David Stiger's curator insight, 11 November 2018, 22:11
From an outsider's perspective, cultures are often hard to pin down. This became clear again when trying to comprehend Pakistan's third gender community. Not to be confused with the more modern transgender community, the third gender - or Khawaja Sira - is manifested in the traditional roots of Islam. It seems like a religiously accepted mode of existing to transcend gender. Because Khawaja Sira falls under the precepts of Islam, it is therefore tolerated but not necessarily embraced. What is interesting is that because there are rules and traditional codes outlining how a Muslim can be Khawaja Sira, there a good deal of hostility towards the modern Western notion of transgender - referring more to a person who "transitions" from the gender of their birth to a gender they more strongly identify with. One would think that Pakistan's third gender community would be more open and understanding of the West's transgender movement. This is not the case. When a Westerner is traveling in Pakistan and notices a third gender option, the person should not assume Pakistan is a bastion for liberal-minded progressives. Instead, Pakistan is just being Pakistan. 
Kelvis Hernandez's curator insight, 14 December 2018, 18:55
A topic to discuss. People who don't agree with the beliefs or rights of people in the LGBTQ community will talk about how this is a new issue. That it is the new generation that is creating these ideas.  But multiple genders and sexualities have been around for hundreds of years in many different ways. There are Native American tribes whose people had "two-spirits". Those people fulfilled the third gender ceremonial roles for their communities. In this story, they discuss Khawaja siras are "God's chosen people", the third gender people who can bless or curse anyone. But "God's chosen people" are also greatly discriminated against in society. You see the contradictions that society puts on people who don't conform to what is supposedly right.
 
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Do it for Denmark, Take II

Spies Travel is joining forces with wannabe grandmas in the fight against Denmark's low birth rate. Introducing Spies Parent Purchase™: Send your child on an active holiday and get a grandchild.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Not all countries are concerned about overpopulation;  Countries like Japan are in steep decline in terms of their population.  Denmark is a country that is seeking to to encourage higher fertility rates; this travel company is using this salacious ad (as a sequel to Do it for Denmark) to promote the it and themselves, but there is some actual demographic analysis in there). Singapore's National Night was another innovative campaign to boost fertility rates, but they also have a less steamy campaign entitled "Maybe Baby?"

Tag: declining populations.

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Dustin Fowler's curator insight, 3 October 2015, 02:59

While we struggle to reduce fertility by offering education and opportunities, in places where there IS education and opportunities, we are struggling to spice things up, for the sake of maintaining our economic prowess.  Here's one of many examples of a country trying to get people to manufacture babies. 

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Temples and Human Sexuality

Temples and Human Sexuality | Geography Education | Scoop.it
It's a good thing we have so many guardians of Indian culture to protect us, the impressionable Indian youth, from being corrupted and misled. (Much like Indian culture, this post is very NSFW.)


Hinduism is much more sensual and explicit in their depictions of the human body and sexuality than other religious traditions.  Sacred spaces in India consequently feature a different ethos on their temples and shrines.  The image here is among the more 'tame' ones in this set (just sayin').  

 

Tags: culture, India, Hinduismsexuality, South Asia, religion.

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Shifts in Political and Cultural Norms

Shifts in Political and Cultural Norms | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Eleven years after Massachusetts became the first state to allow same-sex couples to marry, the Supreme Court on April 28 will hear arguments about whether to extend that right nationwide. The case comes amid a wave of gay marriage legalization: 28 states since 2013, and 36 overall. Such widespread acceptance in a short amount of time isn't a phenomenon unique to gay marriage. Social change in the U.S. appears to follow a pattern: A few pioneer states get out front before the others, and then a key event—often a court decision or a grassroots campaign reaching maturity—triggers a rush of state activity that ultimately leads to a change in federal law.

We looked at six big issues—interracial marriage, prohibition, women’s suffrage, abortion, same-sex marriage, and recreational marijuana — to show how this has happened in the past, and may again in the very near future.

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Uganda planning new anti-gay law

Uganda planning new anti-gay law | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Uganda plans to introduce a new anti-gay law that will withstand any legal challenge, a government minister has told the BBC. It will not explicitly refer to homosexuality, but will rely on the penal code which prescribes a life sentence for 'unnatural acts', he said. Activists say the plan is more draconian than anti-gay legislation annulled by the courts in August. The US and other donors cut funding to Uganda in protest against the law. Uganda is a deeply conservative society where homosexual acts are already illegal."


Tag: sexuality, Uganda.

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Pro-Natalist Policies

"No one has found out how to help Denmark's falling birth rate. Until now. Spies Travels announces a competition where you have to make a baby to win."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Not all countries are concerned about overpopulation;  Countries like Japan are in steep decline in terms of their population.    Denmark is a country that is seeking to to encourage higher fertility rates (and this travel company is using this salacious ad to promote the it and themselves, but there is some actual demographic analysis in there). Singapore's National Night was another innovative campaign to boost fertility rates (warning: the video is provocative).  Russia is also trying to boost fertility rates with a similar idea, but another major part of their strategy is to reaffirm traditional sexual norms in society.  

Tag: declining populations.

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Jacob Crowell's curator insight, 27 October 2014, 14:41

This shows what Pro-Natalism looks like in the 21st century. Youtube videos, and competitions that can go viral and trending. I find it interesting how these policies are trying to gain traction through video campaigns with sexy models and catchy slogans like "Do it for Demark". Population geography can be a key indicator of the characteristics of a country or nation. Denmark knows they need to counter a falling birthrate in order to stay growing this is definatly a modern way of going about that.

Lora Tortolani's curator insight, 5 March 2015, 02:58

Sex sells everything, even making babies!

Mark Hathaway's curator insight, 10 October 2015, 12:03

This video may be both the greatest and worst television commercial in the history of civilization. I can already imagine a do it for Rhode Island commercial airing sometime in the near future. In all seriousness, this video is aimed at an enormous issue facing Both Europe and Russia. Russia particularly, is suffering terribly. In the aftermath of the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Russian death rate far outpaced the Russian birth rate. The seriousness of such an issue can not be understated. A country can not survive if more people are dying, than being born. Only recently, has the birth rate caught back up to the death rate in Russia. While the death crises may be ebbing in Russia, there is no way to erase twenty years of death.

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Cultural commodities and the idea of beauty

"In Venezuela, women are confronted with a culture of increasingly enhanced physiques fueled by beauty pageants and plastic surgery."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Unrealistic mannequins are nothing new...but this happens for some important cultural and economic reasons.  Society produces mannequins and the mannequins are a part of the cultural landscape that has some normative ideals of beauty and gender.  How does the media and society's images of the 'ideal body' influence and shape cultural values and aspirations?  How has this changed over time and space?  

This New York Times article shows some of the connections between cultural norms, mannequin production and plastic surgery in Venezuela, while this NPR podcast tackles similar cultural issues in Brazil.  On the opposite side of the spectrum watch this video about the production of mannequins modeled on people with disabilities.  The tag line for the project was "because who is perfect anyway?"


Tags: Venezuela, South America, gender, popular culture, media, culture.

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Alyssa Dorr's curator insight, 17 December 2014, 06:36

In Venezuela, women are confronted with a culture of increasingly enhanced physiques fueled by beauty pageants and plastic surgery. The man at the beginning says that inner beauty does not exist and that's something that women who are not pretty invented just to justify themselves. This man happens to be the leader of the Miss Venezuela pageant. Another interesting thing he tells us is that in the rules of this contest, the girls don't have to be completely natural. They just have to be beautiful, but where that beauty comes from doesn't matter. For many people in Venezuela, beauty means perfection. Even though Venezuela's economic struggles mount, the search for an idealized and often inflated figure continues. Mannequins are being pumped up to match their outsized human counterparts. One of the workers at the clothing store says that when they had less developed mannequins, they sold less. So not only were mannequins being portrayed as busty because it was the ideal image, but because it also made them more money.

Kendra King's curator insight, 8 February 2015, 21:27

Venezuela added a whole new level to the unrealistic beauty standards that mess with some females minds. Putting these mannequins in numerous stores is just sickening. At least in the United States when we go to the mall, we don’t have a model staring us down (unless you’re in Victoria Secret). Yet, what is even worse is that the sales actually went up in one of the stores that introduced these mannequins according to the cashier. The only heartening bit of this clip was the cashier who actually went against societal norms by holding inner beauty above outer beauty.

 

A large part of me can’t grasp why more people don’t believe in inner beauty. As the 28 year old who looked like she was about to have surgery aptly stated, it is all due to “social pressure.” Yet, the last women interviewed about her body image caused by “social pressure” said she will never be “fully satisfied.” In fact, she already wants to get another boob job. If one realizes she will never be happy trying to chase the ridiculous standards of beauty, then why do it? The pressure will never get any better if you’re unfilled to begin with and going along the same path again is just nonsense. Yet, none of those women seemed to really ponder the norm. It’s why I wasn’t even remotely amazed that when asked “where this standard of beauty came from,” the male hand an answer and the female didn’t. At the same time though my parents raised me to understand there is more to outer beauty. So it is easy for me to pick apart their logic partly due to my social environment.     

Tanya Townsend's curator insight, 13 October 2015, 05:39

I think it is amazing to think how much one person can stand behind the scenes and yet play such a huge role in how a whole country sets its standards for beauty. I feel sorry for the women of Venezuela, they are being sold a lie.

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Tea for Two

"We came to Sri Lanka with every intention of filming a video about an organic, fair trade tea farmer. That is exactly what we were planning when we set foot on the small tea farm of Piyasena and his wife Ariyawatha. What we didnt expect was to be so taken with the relationship between the two of them. What started as a farm story quickly turned into a story about love and dedication amongst the Ceylon tea fields."


Seth Dixon's insight:

The beginning of their love story is rooted in cultural traditions that many would find oppressive (arranged marriage), and yet there is much about their sweet relationship that is near-universally admired. 

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James Matthews's curator insight, 21 May 2013, 16:16

Definitely a case of oppression versus admiration - what a wonderful story.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, 12 April 2014, 05:38

This video is about a tea farming couple whose arranged marriage has been very successful. The cultural tradition of arranged marriage may seem oppressive to us, but there are a great number of them where the couple stays happy. In these cultures with arranged marriage, divorce is usually not a realistic option, so these couples are possibly more willing to cooperate to make their marriage work than in the United States, but undoubtedly many remain unhappily married.

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Iceland wants to ban Internet porn

Iceland wants to ban Internet porn | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Iceland is working on banning Internet pornography, calling explicit online images a threat to children.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Given the cultural values and legal traditions of Western Europe in general (and Scandinavia more specifically), Iceland stands apart on this particular issue.  While most Western countries would see this as a freedom of speech issue, many in Iceland view it as child protection issue. 

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Sex and World Peace

Sex and World Peace

~ Chad F. Emmett (author) More about this product
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Sex and World Peace (9780231131827): Valerie M. Hudson, Bonnie Ballif-Spanvill, Mary Caprioli, Chad F. Emmett

 

I have not yet had the opportunity to read this book but feel that it touches on some of the core issues in geography today: gender, culture and political stability (plus, it's just a great title).  The authors of Sex and World Peace explore the relationships between cultural norms regarding gender and political stability and war.  They show that security for women translates to security for the state. According to the authors, they "compare micro-level gender violence and macro-level state peacefulness in global settings...[and] mount a solid campaign against women's systemic insecurity, which effectively unravels the security of all."

 

Written by geography, political science and psychology professors, Sex and World Peace is the synthesis of years of research produced as a part of the WomanStats project.  For more about this ongoing project and the great database which they have produced (loaded with potential for student projects) see: http://womanstats.org

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