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Afghanistan is a failed state - Essay Example Afghanistan is a mountainous landlocked country found in the South Central Asia, bordered by Pakistan in the south and east, Iran in the west, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan in the north, and China in the far northeast (Afghanistan, 2011).Various ethnic communities can be found in the country, with the most common being the Pashtun ethnic group, although there are a few other ethnic groups such as Tajiks, Uzbeks, Hazara, and other small groups. Despite having large chunks of underutilized agricultural lands and mineral resources, the country remains one of the poorest nations mainly due to political disturbance and persistent infighting, as well as the 1980 Afghan War (Afghanistan, 2011). A failed state may be described as one where political control and order is non-existence such that the citizenry are oppressed, while the general environment is tense, and consists of warring factions and militant rebels, with the governmentâ€™s armed forces always at cross-roads with these insurgents or unable to provide enough security. Afghanistan seems to have fallen in this category, not until the US embarked on enforcing democratic rule in the recent past. One reason for classifying Afghanistan as a failed state is the fact that the government institutions have been almost totally destroyed characterized by no rule of law and no democratic system of governance; for example, the Taliban militia oppressed and massacred most people opposed to their rule. In addition, the country seems to have failed due to persistent civil war, internal and external displacements, human rights violations, extreme poverty, and the unending drought with the socio-economic indicators being too poor or inadequate. Other factors have been traced to emerge from the cold war, colonial disturbance of social structures and imbalance between social mobility and nation-building processes. In the recent years, the international community has been keen to help the country rebuild itself, with the US being on the frontline. However, several challenges are encountered in nation building, one being that the policies drawn are not sound enough as the main focus is military intervention to eliminate terror and create a democratic state, but less emphasis on reconstruction. Other challenges include insufficient funding from NGOs, insecurity due to the persistence of an antiregime and anti-western insurgence, and shifting attention by the US and UK to other countries, such as Iraq, Libya and so on. Further in this paper I will look at what has failed and why Afghanistan is being compared to a failed state and the nation building efforts which have received a lot of international support have not been quite a success. The paper will also touch the role of violence, military and humanitarian issues in the Afghanistan. Failed states Countries exist to offer political and social goods in a decentralized manner to the people living within its boundaries. Therefore, countries organize and distribute the concerns of their people, and safeguard their people from external exploitation and influences to ensure the countryâ€™s internal environment in terms of economic, political, and social aspects are taken care of. Countries are classified as strong states, weak states, failed, or collapsed depending on their ability to provide the important political goods to their people. Any country governmentâ€™s main function is to provide the political good of security by preventing cross-border invasions and infiltrations, and any reduction of it territories. This is in addition to removing domestic threats or attacks upon the national order and social systems, and providing mechanisms for dispute resolution between the citizens with the state and with fellow
The term Baroque Essay
The word Baroque, like most period or stylistic designations, was invented by later critics rather than practitioners of the arts in the 17th and early 18th centuries. It is a French translation of the Portuguese word Barroco (meaning an irregular pearl, or false jewelâ€”notably, an ancient similar word, Barlocco or Brillocco, is used in Roman dialect for the same meaningâ€”and natural pearls that deviate from the usual, regular forms so they do not have an axis of rotation are known as baroque pearls).
Alternatively, it may derive from the now obsolete Italian Baroco (meaning, in logical Scholastica, a syllogism with weak content). A common definition, before the term Barocco was used, called this genre simply the style of The Flying Forms.
The term Baroque was initially used with a derogatory meaning, to underline the excesses of its emphasis, of its eccentric redundancy, its noisy abundance of details, as opposed to the clearer and sober rationality of the Renaissance. It was first rehabilitated by the Swiss-born art historian, Heinrich WÃ¶lfflin (1864â€“1945) in his Renaissance und Barock (1888); WÃ¶lfflin identified the Baroque as movement imported into mass, an art antithetic to Renaissance art.
He did not make the distinctions between Mannerism and Baroque that modern writers do, and he ignored the later phase, the academic Baroque that lasted into the 18th century. Writers in French and English did not begin to treat Baroque as a respectable study until WÃ¶lfflins influence had made German scholarship pre-eminent.
In modern usage, the term Baroque may still be used, usually pejoratively, to describe works of art, craft, or design that are thought to have excessive ornamentation or complexity of line, or, as a synonym for Byzantine, to describe literature, computer programsÂ , contracts, or laws that are thought to be excessively complex, indirect, or obscure in language, to the extent of concealing or confusing their meaning. A Baroque fear is deeply felt, but utterly beyond daily reality.
Baroque Baroque visual art
A defining statement of what Baroque signifies in painting is provided by the series of paintings executed by Peter Paul Rubens for Marie de Medici at the Luxembourg Palace in Paris (now at the Louvre) , in which a Catholic painter satisfied a Catholic patron: Baroque-era conceptions of monarchy, iconography, handling of paint, and compositions as well as the depiction of space and movement.
There were highly diverse strands of Italian baroque painting, from Caravaggio to Cortona; both approaching emotive dynamism with different styles. Another frequently cited work of Baroque art is Berninis Saint Theresa in Ecstasy for the Cornaro chapel in S. Maria della Vittoria, which brings together architecture, sculpture, and theater into one grand conceit .
The later Baroque style gradually gave way to a more decorative Rococo, which, through contrast, further defines Baroque.
Baroque Baroque literature and philosophy
Baroque actually expressed new values, which often are summarised in the use of metaphor and allegory, widely found in Baroque literature, and in the research for the maraviglia (wonder, astonishment â€” as in Marinism), the use of artifices. If Mannerism was a first breach with Renaissance, Baroque was an opposed language.
The psychological pain of Man a theme disbanded after the Copernican and the Lutheran revolutions in search of solid anchors, a proof of an ultimate human power was to be found in both the art and architecture of the Baroque period. A relevant part of works was made on religious themes, since the Roman Church was the main customer.
Virtuosity was researched by artists (and the virtuoso became a common figure in any art) together with realism and care for details (some talk of a typical intricacy).
The privilege given to external forms had to compensate and balance the lack of content that has been observed in many Baroque works: Marinos Maraviglia, for example, is practically made of the pure, mere form. Fantasy and imagination should be evoked in the spectator, in the reader, in the listener. All was focused around the individual Man, as a straight relationship between the artist, or directly the art and its user, its client. Art is then less distant from user, more directly approaching him, solving the cultural gap that used to keep art and user reciprocally far, by Maraviglia.
But the increased attention to the individual, also created in these schemes some important genres like the Romanzo (novel) and let popular or local forms of art, especially dialectal literature, to be put into evidence. In Italy this movement toward the single individual (that some define a cultural descent, while others indicate it was a possible cause for the classical opposition to Baroque) caused Latin to be definitely replaced by Italian.
In English literature, the metaphysical poets represent a closely related movement; their poetry likewise sought unusual metaphors, which they then examined in often extensive detail. Their verse also manifests a taste for paradox, and deliberately inventive and unusual turns of phrase.
Baroque Baroque sculpture
In Baroque sculpture, groups of figures assumed new importance, and there was a dynamic movement and energy of human formsâ€” they spiralled around an empty central vortex, or reached outwards into the surrounding space. For the first time, Baroque sculpture often had multiple ideal viewing angles. The characteristic Baroque sculpture added extra-sculptural elements, for example, concealed lighting, or water fountains.
The architecture, sculpture and fountains of Bernini (1598â€“1680) give highly-charged characteristics of Baroque style. Bernini was undoubtedly the most important sculptor of the Baroque period. He approached Michelangelo in his omnicompetence: Bernini sculpted, worked as an architect, painted, wrote plays, and staged spectacles. In the late 20th century Bernini was most valued for his sculpture, both for his virtuosity in carving marble and his ability to create figures that combine the physical and the spiritual. He was also a fine sculptor of bust portraits in high demand among the powerful.
Baroque Berninis Cornaro chapel: the complete work of art
A good example of Berninis work that helps us understand the Baroque is his St. Theresa in Ecstasy (1645â€“52), created for the Cornaro Chapel of the church of Santa Maria della Vittoria, Rome. Bernini designed the entire chapel, a subsidiary space along the side of the church, for the Cornaro family.
He had, in essence, a brick box shaped something like a proscenium stage space with which to work. Saint Theresa, the focal point of the chapel, is a monochromatic marble statue (a soft white) surrounded by a polychromatic marble architectural framing concealing a window to light the statue from above. In shallow relief, sculpted figure-groups of the Cornaro family inhabit in opera boxes along the two side walls of the chapel.
The setting places the viewer as a spectator in front of the statue with the Cornaro family leaning out of their box seats and craning forward to see the mystical ecstasy of the saint. St. Theresa is highly idealized in detail and in an imaginary setting. St. Theresa of Avila, a popular saint of the Catholic Reformation, wrote narratives of her mystical experiences aimed at the nuns of her Carmelite Order; these writings had become popular reading among lay people interested in pursuing spirituality.
She once described the love of God as piercing her heart like a burning arrow. Bernini literalizes this image by placing St. Theresa on a cloud in a reclining pose; what can only be described as a Cupid figure holds a golden arrow (the arrow is made of metal) and smiles down at her. The angelic figure is not preparing to plunge the arrow into her heartâ€” rather, he has withdrawn it. St. Theresas face reflects not the anticipation of ecstasy, but her current fulfillment, which can only be described as orgasmic.
The blending of religious and erotic was intensely offensive to both neoclassical restraint and, later, to Victorian prudishness; it is part of the genius of the Baroque. Bernini, who in life and writing was a devout Catholic, is not attempting to satirize the experience of a chaste nun, but to embody in marble a complex truth about religious experienceâ€” that it is an experience that takes place in the body. Theresa described her bodily reaction to spiritual enlightenment in a language of ecstasy used by many mystics, and Berninis depiction is earnest.
The Cornaro family promotes itself discreetly in this chapel; they are represented visually, but are placed on the sides of the chapel, witnessing the event from balconies. As in an opera house, the Cornaro have a privileged position in respect to the viewer, in their private reserve, closer to the saint; the viewer, however, has a better view from the front. They attach their name to the chapel, but St. Theresa is the focus. It is a private chapel in the sense that no one could say mass on the altar beneath the statue (in 17th century and probably through the 19th) without permission from the family, but the only thing that divides the viewer from the image is the altar rail. The spectacle functions both as a demonstration of mysticism and as a piece of family pride.
Aftermath of the 2007 financial crisis in UK - Essay Example
The UK government has embarked on a number of missions to sustain the financial sector and the overall economy. This paper will focus on the measures taken by the UK government in the aftermath of the 2007 financial crisis to deal with the effects of the external forces on business organizations. In modern times, has been identified that global financial system is an interdependent system between all the countries (Shiller, 2008, p.xi). The current global financial crisis has created instability of economic systems in most countries including UK to such an extent that the UK government has been compelled to intrude into the financial markets in an unprecedented manner. The financial crisis although has not created problems in the UK constitutional system, nevertheless has proved that the constitution lacks flexibility to cope with financial crisis of such mammoth proportions (Black, 2010, p.1). The crisis has shown that the government has to face legal barriers arising from various unanticipated sources. The European Union (EU) has a rule imposed on state aid which gives more power to the EU Commission than the Westminster parliament to decide the fate of taxpayersâ€™ money. Moreover, various corporate and financial norms restrict the management capacity of the UK government of investments in the banks (Black, 2010, p.2). UK has â€œglobally very active financial services industry with cutting edge financial innovationâ€ (Williams, 2011, p.41). Previously, the UK government had a â€œtripartiteâ€ regulatory system which allowed the Bank of England, the Financial Services Authority (FSA) and the Treasury to contribute towards maintaining economic progress in the country. However, the government felt that this system failed in three ways â€“ a) it failed to assess any troubles that hinder economic progress, b) it could not assess appropriate steps to tackle such hindrances, and c) it failed to act effectively at the onset of the crisis (Giudice et al., 2012, p.17). The effects of the global financial crisis first created waves in August 2007 and were enhanced throughout 2008. The impact of the crisis reached its peak in September/October 2008. Several financial institutes were rescued like the Northern Rock in UK. However, it was not before late 2008 that any major fiscal and monetary policies were established as response to the crisis. Most of the policies were put into practice only after the fall of Lehman Brothers in September 2008. Even in March 2008, the Treasury claimed that the government is duly abiding by all fiscal regulations and economy is stable. This indifferent perception was changed as a result of the events that occurred in September/October 2008. A reduction was made for a temporary period in VAT from 17.5 percent to 15 percent. In the end of 2009, it was brought back to the original rate. Moreover, the government made provision of ?3 billion for capital spending. In the beginning of the global crisis, the approximate valuation of public sector net borrowing (PSBR) was increased by 2.4 percent of GDP to 5.3 percent. Out of this, 0.6 percent was used for â€œdiscretionary budget changesâ€ (Sawyer, 2011, p.206). In a wider context, the UK government has made plans and policies in response to the economic crisis with three main goals. First, the UK government has provided capital support to banks to reinforce their balance sheets. Secondly, the government has taken steps to enhance the competence of banks so that
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