Earthly/Geo/Astro · Human-ities · Projects

UTA flight 772 Satellite Memorial in the middle of the Sahara

On september 19th, 1989 UTA flight 772, scheduled to operate from the republic of congo to paris, was attacked and exploded over the Sahara desert, an international tragedy which resulted in the fatalities of all 170 people from 18 different nationalities on board. Eighteen years later, Les Familles de L’attentat du Dc-10 D’uta — an association of the victims’ families — resolved to collaborate in a monumental, on-site memorial for those deceased. A team of both relatives and local inhabitants journeyed to the remote crash site, settled along a barren stretch of the desert.

For its construction and realization, a significant circumstance was location. Wanting a memorial that could be visited and viewed forever, but limited by its inaccessible locale, the association set out to build a massive monument on the surface of the sand that could seen and accessed thorough the satellite view of google maps. 16°51′53″N 11°57′13″E are the coordinates of the commemoration, whose 200-foot diameter laid upon the expanse of the earth is clearly and fully visible from the sky. It is made up of large dark stones positioned in the outline of an airplane, fitted inside a massive compass. 170 broken mirrors are laid around the circumference, each representing one victim, while a plane wing stands upright, emerging from the sand and bearing a plaque with the names, ages, and country of origin of each person lost.

Text and Images (© Aviation Sans Frontières & Sahara Conservation Fund) via Designboom

Human-ities · Philosophy · Social/Politics

Killing Babies

“Is there no moral distinction between killing a newborn baby and aborting a fetus? And should an academic paper that seemingly advocated the killing of newborns have ever been published?

Those are the questions at the heart of a controversy that has erupted after the publication of a paper entitled ‘After-birth abortion: Why should the baby live?’ in the Journal of Medical Ethics. Two Australian academics, Alberto Giubilini and Francesca Minerva, argued that the moral status of a newborn baby was identical to that of a fetus. Given that most people view abortion as morally acceptable so, they argued, there is no reason not to see infanticide as morally acceptable, too, even in ‘cases where the newborn has the potential to have an (at least) acceptable life, but the well-being of the family is at risk’. Indeed, Giubilini and Minerva reject the term ‘infanticide’, preferring to talk of ‘after-birth abortion’.

The paper, which would normally have been read only by a handful of moral philosophers, was picked by newspapers and websites and caused outrage worldwide. ‘Slaughter newborn kids, say academics’, read the headline in one British tabloid. Australian commentators, American chat show hosts and Catholic bishops weighed in, many claiming that infanticide was the logical consequence of the legalization of abortion. The two authors say that they have received death threats.”

Excerpt of an essay written by Kenan Malik. Continue HERE

Kenan Malik (born 1960) is an Indian-born English writer, lecturer and broadcaster, trained in neurobiology and the history of science. As a scientific author, his focus is on the philosophy of biology, and contemporary theories of multiculturalism, pluralism and race. These topics are core concerns in The Meaning of Race (1996), Man, Beast and Zombie (2000) and Strange Fruit: Why both sides are wrong in the race debate (2008).

His work contains a forthright defense of the values of the 18th-century Enlightenment, which he sees as having been distorted and misunderstood in more recent political and scientific thought. Wiki

Design · Paint/Illust./Mix-Media · Performativity · Sculpt/Install

The Colorful Visitors’ Tunnel of a Prison in Düsseldorf

Now family, lawyers and police at the new Justiz Vollzugs Anstalt (Prison/ Correctional institution) in Düsseldorf, can have a more vibrant sensory experience as they walk this tunnel to meet the inmates. Hopefully, these colors have a positive effect on all the visitors’ psyche so they can transmit it to the prison inhabitant. Artist Markus Linnenbrink was commissioned by Justiz Vollzugs Anstalt.

Human-ities · Public Space · Social/Politics

The Rise of Multigenerational and One-Person Households

Katherine S. Newman states her thesis plainly: “Global competition is the most profound structural force affecting the residential location of young adults in the developed world (or the under­developed world, for that matter)” — but one is impressed by her refusal to turn thesis into dogma. She acknowledges that different cultures define adulthood in different ways, with Americans tending to see it as “a process of self-discovery” and Europeans as “a station defined by the way one relates to others.” She also appreciates the mutual benefits of multi­generational households, as suggested by a survey showing that 76 percent of American parents of 21-year-olds say they feel close to their child, as opposed to a mere quarter of their own parents saying the same.

Still, Newman does not shy away from the larger effects of a child’s “failure to launch,” independently, into the world. Not the least of these is a generation’s failure to generate. At present there are four workers in Europe for every pensioner; by 2050 there will be only two workers for every retiree. Birthrates in the United States would also be falling if not for Mexican immigrants — yet another job they’ve taken on, along with those of lawn- and elder-care and favored scapegoat. But in Japan, the fastest-aging country in the world, where only 1 percent of the population is foreign-born, the future looks more bleak.

Newman also takes pains to show how accordion families shape up across class lines — the difference between an ­upper-middle-class family providing rent-free space to a child earning a law degree and a subsistence family hanging on to a child in order to make the rent. Part of this difference is that “working-class kids do not boomerang back into the family home” but “like their Spanish or Italian counterparts . . . do not leave home at all until much later in life.”

Excerpt of an article written by GARRET KEIZER, at the NYT