This Week’s Most Viewed Papers
Each day thousands of Academia.edu users scour the site, discovering new research topics and catching wind of trending papers.
Here’s what captured the curiosity of Academia.edu users this week:
Scratching the Surface: The Ethics of Mining Helium-3
Total Views: 2,521
Terrestrial mining is ethically problematic by virtue of its directly destructive impact and by virtue of its contribution to both the depletion of fossil fuels and (through the use of the latter) to the raising of C02 levels in the atmosphere. Extraction of helium-3 (3He) from the lunar regolith would share two of these same problems, i.e. resource depletion (which I will suggest is the soft problem of lunar mining) and destructive impact (which I will suggest is the hard problem). In response to the hard problem, in spite of the fact that the Moon is a lifeless place, I will argue that we do nonetheless have reasons for lunar protection.
Reading Hick-Hop: The Shotgun Marriage of Hip Hop and Country Music
Total Views: 5,364
Hip-hop and country music stem from two distinct delineations of blackness and whiteness, most often positioned as diametrically opposed and mutually constitutive. How then do we understand the emergence of what the Wall Street Journal calls “hick hop”, country music with hip hop verses, hip hop language, hip hop posturing and even occasionally actual hip hop artists rapping in country songs? I argue that to be astonished by the hip-hop country crossover is to not understand the history of “race” music or the contemporary reality of poverty among rural whites. White poverty may be invisible to policy and dominant culture but it is increasingly visible to poor whites. Hick-hop represents the contestation and navigation of this invisibility.
Egypt: Another Mirage of Democracy
Total Views: 225
Winning a democratic election makes you a democrat no more than eating lettuce makes you a rabbit. The media should focus on the core of events rather than the form when they report on Democracy in Egypt.
Compulsory Voting Laws and Turnout: Efficacy and Appropriateness
Author: Lisa Hill and Jonathon Louth, University of Chester
Total Views: 2,109
This paper addresses some residual misunderstandings about the effects of compulsory voting and, in particular, the effectiveness of compulsory voting laws as a mechanism to stimulate voting turnout. We address studies in which the effectiveness of compulsory voting is either underplayed or miscalculated due to an inappropriate use of atypical cases or a methodological error known as the ‘ecological fallacy’. Specifically, treating all compulsory voting regimes as a synthetic group can give rise to inaccurate perceptions of the performance of individual regimes like Australia’s. This paper also compares the efficacy of compulsory voting with alternative turnout-raising mechanisms.
Where’s the Doctor? PAs and NPs on the Front Lines of U.S. Healthcare
Author: Darron Smith, University of Tennessee and Tasha Sabino
Total Views: 509
Comparing and contrasting the physician assistant and nurse practitioner on the front lines of U.S. health care, how are the two professions uniquely positioned to serve the millions of uninsured Americans? This chapter explores the differences between these two professions.
Out of the Norwegian Glaciers: Lendbreen- A Tunic from the Early First Millennium AD
Total Views: 253
As the temperature rises each year, the assemblages of prehistoric hunters emerge from the ice. Archaeologists in Norway are now conducting regular surveys in the mountains to record the new ﬁnds. A recent example presented here consists of a whole tunic, made of warm wool and woven in diamond twill. The owner, who lived in the late Iron Age (third–fourth centuries AD), was wearing well-worn outdoor clothing, originally of high quality.
Cultural Change and Diffusion: Geographical Patterns, Social Processes, and Contact Zones
Total Views: 10,053
Cultures develop and change both through spontaneous, local invention and the adoption of ideas, customs, and objects from other cultural groups. As early as the 1930s, scholars suggested that “no more than 10% of all of the cultural items found in any culture— including our own— orginated in that culture” (Ferraro, 2006). The diffusion or spread of culture from a point of origin to other places and people can occur through personal contact, migration, trade, war, or mass communications. Diffusion is important to studying history, but it is also part of the trajectory of the future.
Out, Damned Spot: Can the ‘Macbeth Effect’ be Replicated?
Total Views: 546
In a much-publicized paper, Zhong and Liljenquist (2006) reported evidence that feelings of moral cleanliness are grounded in feelings of physical cleanliness: a threat to people’s moral purity leads them to seek, literally, to cleanse themselves. In an attempt to replicate and build upon these findings, we conducted a pilot study in which we unexpectedly failed to replicate the original results from the second study of Zhong and Liljenquist’s report. We used the authors’ original materials and methods; we investigated samples that were more representative of the general population than in the original experiments; we investigated samples from different countries and cultures; and we substantially increased the power of our statistical tests. Nevertheless, we still failed to replicate Zhong and Liljenquist’s initial reported findings.
Growth, Age and Size of the Jurassice Pachycormid Leedsichthys Problematicus (Osteichthyes: Actinopterygii)
Author: Jeff Liston, Yunnan University, Michael G. Newbrey, Thomas James Challands, and Colin E. Adams
Total Views: 532
The Jurassic pachycormid osteichthyan Leedsichthys problematicus is renowned for having been able to achieve prodigious size for a bony fish. Building on work of Martill (1986a), a thorough examination of all known material was conducted in order to constrain estimates of the size of this animal and examine its rate of growth. Important specimens of Leedsichthys are described for the first time. The histology of Leedsichthys is reviewed, and the presence of growth annuli is used to establish ages for five specimens.
Horsemen in Forts or Peasants in Villages? Remarks on the Archaeology of Warfare in the 6th to 7th C. Balkans
Total Views: 509
Conspicuously absent from 6th to early 7th c. fortified sites in the Balkans are stirrups and other elements of equipment signalling the presence of cavalry troops. Hoards of iron implements containing stirrups have been wrongly dated to Late Antiquity; they are in fact a much later date (9th-11th c. A.D.). Those hoards which can be dated to the 6th c. with some degree of certaintly lack agricultural tools associated with large-scale cultivation of fields. As most such hoards found in Early Byzantine hill-forts typically include tools for the garden-type cultivation of small plots of land, they show that no agricultural occupations could be practised inside or outside 6th c. forts, which could satisfy the needs of existing populations.
by Courtney Quirin, Science Writer