Latest posts  
November
24th
  3:21:41 AM

FOCUS ON REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH

'If only we had enough condoms'

tags :

WHO reportThe twentieth century witnessed so much bloodshed in the name of ideology you might think people would be ready to give it a rest. But no, we have a new ideology whose adherents believe will usher in a new heaven on earth. If only everyone would finally get on board, if only its adherents had the right combination of money and power, if only its Neanderthal opponents would surrender their squeamishness, this new ideology could solve the world’s problems. Poverty, environmental degradation and disease would be conquered at last. The name of this new ideology? I call it “condom-ism.”
 
Its adherents believe we could solve all these problems, if only we had enough condoms. I exaggerate, of course. They actually believe that human salvation will require all sorts of birth control including abortion, not just condoms.
 
A recent edition of the widely-read British medical journal, The Lancet, spells out some of the tenets of this position. The authors opine that “family planning” still matters because population growth retards economic growth, or exacerbates poverty. They themselves admit that the economic evidence for their position is slim, because “poverty reduction is also affected… click here to read whole article and make comments



 
June
02nd
  1:07:36 PM

FOCUS ON POSTMODERNISM

What is the difference between King Lear and Ginger Meggs?

tags : philosophy, post-modernism

In the best postmodern way, I should let you know at the outset that I am not going to talk about either King Lear or Ginger Meggs. I have juxtaposed Shakespeare’s tragic monarch and the hero of the once-popular cartoon strip – as indeed I have juxtaposed Andrew Marvell, the late Metaphysical poet and Mickey Mouse – in various public ruminations about the problems associated with the reading, teaching and appreciation of literature in English in the contemporary classroom, specifically, in the current New South Wales Higher School Certificate English syllabus (but, of course, not only there).

Such juxtapositions are meant to highlight the jettisoning of value in education, in general, reflected earlier this week, for example, when the Australian Catholic University saw fit to confer honorary doctoral degrees on the Wiggles. The thinking (if it might be so called) behind such events as this reveals a degraded idea of the university – if I may use Cardinal’s Newman’s term of high conception in reference to such a debased context. It goes well beyond a modern re-consideration of (and, at times, a healthy re-valuation of received ideas about… click here to read whole article and make comments


 
June
02nd
  10:01:53 AM

FOCUS ON POSTMODERNISM

PoMo's unteachable suspicion

tags : education, philosophy, post-modernism

Australia is not a safe place for postmodernists at the present moment. Over the past months, academics, journalists, and even Prime Minister John Howard have publicly attacked their influence on school curricula around the country.

At a recent seminar at Warrane College, a residential college at the University of New South Wales, in Sydney, academics from three universities took the chance to lambaste the postmodern position. In this issue of MercatorNet, we are featuring some of the contributions that they made.

In "Your pocket guide to PoMo's history" Martin Fitzgerald provides some historical background. His paper traces two philosophical strands that have shaped postmodernism. One is the deconstructionism of thinkers like Jacques Derrida and Michel Foucault. This developed from the structuralist and logical positivist movements of the 20th century, which in turn sprang from the empiricist tradition. The other is the atheistic existentialism of Jean Paul Sartre and Friedrich Nietzsche. The convergence of these ideas has led to the “theory” -- or more correctly the attitude -- that characterises postmodernism.

In "What does this mean for education?" James Franklin argues that postmodern-inspired… click here to read whole article and make comments


 
June
01st
  12:53:15 PM

FOCUS ON POSTMODERNISM

Your pocket guide to PoMo's history

tags : philosophy, post-modernism

It all began with one simple idea which multiplied dangerouslyHow often have you been reading something quite pleasant and suddenly the author drops the fateful word – postmodernism? The argument begins to get fuzzy. You muddle through and hope that the rest of the article becomes clear. You also have a sneaking suspicion that a dictionary will be useless. And, anyhow, how are you supposed to know what postmodernism is if you’re not even sure what modernism is?

So let’s start with modernism. This is the philosophical term for philosophical offshoots of the Enlightenment, the complex of ideas that has shaped the modern world from the 18th century until the mid-20th century. Its characteristic features were -- and still are -- suspicion of authority and tradition as sources of knowledge and the conviction that human reason is the engine of progress. This implied that religious faith was a bad guide to understanding the world and that the unimpeded march of science and technology was a very good thing. The Enlightenment was optimistic: knowledge through reason alone would produce an ideal world which goes forever forward.

These key ideas… click here to read whole article and make comments


 
March
18th
  9:06:48 AM

ENGAGING ISLAM

Africa's religious fault line

tags :

NAIROBI, KENYA: Every morning at 5.20 from my house I hear the muezzin call the faithful to prayer from the second largest mosque in Nairobi. Just over one hour later the bells of the nearby Salesian shrine follow suit and intone the Ave Maria, as if in friendly competition. This daily routine is a constant reminder that Christianity and Islam have been co-existing in Africa –- especially immediately south of the Sahara -- for many centuries: a fault line that stretches from Sudan, northern Kenya, Uganda and southern Ethiopia across to the Ivory Coast and Senegal.

Christianity is thought to have arrived in the mountains of Ethiopia as early as the 4th century. From the 7th century the Christian state of Nubia (central Sudan) began to succumb to the gradual infiltration of Islam, but Nubian Christians lingered on in the southern part until the 16th century. Sudan was crucial to the Muslims because it provided access from North Africa to Mecca.

The east coast of Africa was settled by Arab Muslims from the 8th and 9th centuries, and they had some success in converting the local people from their… click here to read whole article and make comments


 
March
17th
  9:47:23 AM

ENGAGING ISLAM

A challenge to European Christians

tags :

A mosque in Berlin (Der Spiegel) MÜNSTER (WESTPHALIA): The anger of militant Muslims in recent weeks has stirred Europe from its slumber. Two questions must be asked in the wake of the furore over the cartoons of Mohammed in European newspapers. What, if anything, do Westerners hold holy? And, with the demographic bomb ticking away, what is the cultural and spiritual identity of Europe?

Finally, the practical consequences of a declining population are troubling Europeans. What neither rational demographers nor intellectual heavyweights have managed to achieve is now obvious to everyone in Denmark, Germany, the UK, Italy, Russia, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg. Between five and ten percent of Germany’s population is already Muslim. The inner cities of the largest German cities, Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne will have a predominantly Muslim population within only 14 years. Germans will be a minority in their inner cities in the imminent future. At present there are 48 mosques in Germany, with more than 100 under construction.

And there are not just signs on the wall that many of the Muslim immigrants into Europe do not want to integrate in their new countries. Last… click here to read whole article and make comments


 
March
15th
  10:39:51 AM

ENGAGING ISLAM

Man and God in Islam

tags :

Although articles on Islam appear every day in Western newspapers, it is normally treated as a political phenomenon. But Islam is a religion and its characteristics flow from its theology. To get an understanding of the underpinnings of the religion of one-fifth of today's world, we consulted Dr José Morales, a Spanish theologian and Catholic priest who has recently published a book on Islam in contemporary Europe.

MercatorNet: The Islamic world and the West have very different ways of looking at the nature of man and society. What are the fundamental reasons for these differences? Are they theological or sociological?

Morales: The Islamic world and the West are very broad realities and concepts which have very different ways of understanding man and society. It is often said that Islam is not a monolith but a mosaic. It is a very fragmented and divided world and only the Western habit of drawing concepts together can treat it as a unity. On the other hand, the Western Enlightenment and Western modernism do not accept a Christian understanding of man either.

With these caveats, let me… click here to read whole article and make comments


 

Page 10 of 10 : ‹ First  < 8 9 10

about this blog | Bookmark and Share

Search this blog

 Recent Posts

 MercatorNet blogs
Book Reviews: Reading Matters
Population issues: Demography is Destiny
Style and culture: Tiger Print
Family social policy: Family Edge
US political scene: Sheila Liaugminas
Just B16 : Just B16
News about bioethics: BioEdge
From the editors : Conniptions

 From MercatorNet's home page

Can rich countries afford a living wage?
15 Oct 2014
If not, can they afford the family, on which the whole of society depends?

Admirable Nobel decision unlikely to spur India-Pakistan peace
14 Oct 2014
The history of the prize in galvanising peace between acrimonious countries is very discouraging.

The Nobel Peace Prize they’ll never give
14 Oct 2014
Surrogacy will be one of our biggest human rights challenges. But same-sex parenting boosters will veto awards to those who…

Politicians fail the family - does the Pope have the answer?
14 Oct 2014
Equality is the political favourite, but family pressures will be solved by unity, says Francis.

Ruthless misogyny
13 Oct 2014
LGBT activists have a range of strategies for discrediting women who question their goals.


 Tags
Queen Beatrix, intellectual diversity, AIDS, Sugata Mitra, Enviropig, military, same-sex marriage referendum, abortion, misogyny, Global Financial Crisis, quality of life, drug legalization, big families, Nelson Mandela, White House, list, Lithuania, human resources, gender violence, legal profession, ecology, France, authoritarianism, saviour siblings, migrant workers, Condoleezza Rice, vilification, Queen Elizabeth II, premarital sex, Western civilization, ageing, #bringbackourgirls, statistics, contraceptive drugs, education reform, selfie, criminal justice, parenthood, Venezuela, commodification, John Mackey, British politics, honour, work, intellectual disability, ethics of warfare, transgender, marriage gap, celebrity culture, UN peacekeeping force, World Cup, opening sentences, Edict of Milan, medicine, unintended pregnancy, politicians, cheerfulness, Judaism, hospitals, humanitarian crisis, Church of England, careers, sexual education, alcoholism, remuneration, funerals, Public Discourse, mathematics, cancer, melancholy, Tasmania, sex abuse, contraceptive injection, Mormons, lists, Netherlands, post-modernism, monarchy, risk reduction, Biden, breast cancer, bullying, yellow journalism, Jonathan Sacks, Gates Foundation, Jihadists, medical ethics, nation-state, sexual morality, US presidential election, artificial intelligence, European identity, boat people, reparative therapy, contraception, dhimmitude, Wangari Maathai, sterilisation camps, Chile, HPV, Argentina, natural law, embryo, Robert Edwards, Lord of the Rings, cheating, prostitution, engineering, Boko Haram, disaster preparedness, immigration, Switzerland, Notre Dame, Christopher Dorner, Judeo-Christian ethics, sin, anencephaly, Africa, conservation, crime, mid-term elections, oil industry, Spain, polio eradication, Margaret Thatcher, TV, history, Sarah Murnaghan, abortion risks, prehistory, Stalin, science, stem cell ethics, Women Deliver, faith and science, middle class, Boston bombings, public relations, blue states, Chick-fil-A, Twilight, Sarah Palin, formation, maternal health, detainees, autism, nuclear power, sex crimes, newspapers, Satanism, noise, Colombia, assisted reproductive technology, society, planking, debt crisis, Quebec, courtship, internet safety, Academy Awards, Tom Cruise, holiday, action movies, Boy Scouts, Ferguson, sportsmanship, stay-at-home Mom, advertising, intelligence, Elizabeth Anscombe, ordinary life, terrorism, scandal, women's rights, birth dearth, Pussy Riot, Middle Ages, global financial crisis, solitude, Yuck factor, academic freedom, cave paintings, addiction, Catholic, Japan, vaccination, schools, social security, Shakespeare, Yale, men's liberation, Kenya, faith and reason, Peter Singer, autonomy, Weltschmerz, racism, emergency contraception, Costa Rica, common good, warfare, Halloween, pornography, Catholic social teaching, baby boomers, PISA, housework, interfaith dialogue, character education, Christopher Hitchens, egoism, electronic records, Reel Love Challenge, Google, International Women's Day, English, agnosticism, pain, solar energy, Christian theology, Matthew Shepard, Al Gore, Confucius, Alan Guttmacher Institute, Elena Kagan, job creation, law and order, space travel, consumerism, optimism, recession, manners, Bernadine P. Healy, Aristotle, individualism, taxation, Crimea, plastic surgery, sex education, law schools, professions, fundamentalism, early Christianity, reproductive technology, wealth, free will, genetic screening, international, Central America, civilian casualties, World War II, sex selective abortions, population density, Norway, gardens, morality and law, teachers, consciousness, interviews, confirmation bias, debt, Nazis, family values, Malala Yousafzai, syria, media, Game of Thrones, physics, electronic voting, WHO, John Maynard Keynes, crazes, family business, 911, The Economist, Washington Post, dignity, right to choose, assisted suicide, Britain, Philip Nitschke, Pennsylvania, childlessness, State of the World's Mothers, Love and Fidelity Network, Belgiium, American exceptionalism, home, surrogacy, parental consent, Moscow Demographic Summit 2011, names, video games, elder abuse, cults, yuppies, rehabilitation, teen movies, same-sex marriage, athletics, Jesus, scientific research, Facebook, hyperovulation, contemplation, freedom of speech, cultural elites, Vatican, profiles in courage, Pope Benedict XVI, demographic decline, jurisprudence, Hwang Woo-suk, men, death penalty, Islamic State, elitism, natural family, American history, martyrdom, personhood, over-population, football, monogamy, Mitt Romney campaign, Hungary, Islam. Barack Obama, women's issues, J.R.R. Tolkien, Margaret Sanger, sex-selective abortion, Nigeria, prostate cancer, Obama politics, foreign affairs, child labour, carbon fast, John Paul II, censorship, dark chocolate, Australian politics, Srebrenica massacre, liberalism, sexual behaviour, self-control, language, commercialization, values voters, Iran, conservatism, tabloids, morning after pill, Mars, workforce, public policy, gender equality, privacy, law enforcement, marriage, gamete donation, gambling, responsibility, nature, film, financial markets, big government, polls, U S Constitution, health, graphic images, literacy, Supreme Court, funding, Pakistan, crisis management, hate speech, Abraham Lincoln, literature, Thomas Berry, email, pluralism, female genital mutilation, philanthropy, definition of marriage, ethics, don't ask, community organizing, spirituality, elites, weddings, book lists, evolution, letters to the editor, public debate, reading, psycholgy, superstition, Big Pharma, electronic medical record, unborn child, singles, humor, arms race, Ground Zero, yeomanry, martyrs, LGBT activism, Christian, British National Party, red states, management, international relations, Alzheimer's disease, mifepristone, Avatar, NGV, relativism, libertarianism, Communism, DSM-5, Valentine's Day, leaking, Gen X, Kermit Gosnell, science fiction, Washington D.C., J D Salinger, taboos, human exceptionalism, jazz, protest, Superman, homophobia, public health, movies. summer, Nikola Tesla, poetry, young adult, Hillary Clinton, teenage pregnancy, books, trafficking, loneliness, egg donors, elections, religious discrimination, patients' rights, austerity, Digital communications, the feminine, iconography, Dreyfus affair, Bosnia, Freedom of speech, JRR Tolkien, demographic winter, Evangelical Christians, Osama bin Laden, Salafism, secular ideology, temperament, Trisomy 18, reality TV, anthropology, right to life, State of the Union address, alcohol, British press, Czech Republic, clash of civilizations, Nobel Prize for Economics, Flanders Fields, Roman banquets, Taliban, intergenerational equity, age of consent, Roman Empire, equality, British Empire, Canada, health care reform, automation, Ecuador, Doctor Who, IVF, Mark Regnerus, disability, family meals, eugenics, Leveson Inquiry, God, don't tell, Immigration, single sex schooling, 1989, media frenzy, police, religious freedom, maternal mortality, indoctrination,
Follow MercatorNet
Facebook
Twitter
Newsletters
Sections and Blogs
Harambee
PopCorn
Conjugality
Careful!
Family Edge
Sheila Reports
Reading Matters
Demography Is Destiny
Conniptions (the editorial)
Information
our ideals
our People
Mercator who?
partner sites
audited accounts
donate
New Media Foundation
Suite 12A, Level 2
5 George Street
North Strathfield NSW 2137
Australia

editor@mercatornet.com
+61 2 8005 8605
skype: mercatornet
© New Media Foundation 2014 | powered by Encyclomedia | designed by Elleston