23 FEB 2015 by ideonexus

 Outside Context Problem

The usual example given to illustrate an Outside Context Problem was imagining you were a tribe on a largish, fertile island; you'd tamed the land, invented the wheel or writing or whatever, the neighbors were cooperative or enslaved but at any rate peaceful and you were busy raising temples to yourself with all the excess productive capacity you had, you were in a position of near-absolute power and control which your hallowed ancestors could hardly have dreamed of and the whole situation wa...
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02 JAN 2012 by ideonexus

 Taxonomy as Colonial Imperialism

Coleridge pointed to this difference between an organising taxonomy and a dynamic scientific principle or law in essays in The Friend (1819). The psychology of collecting, ordering and naming specimens could also be seen as a form of mental colonising and empire-building. ‘Taxonomy after all, is a form of imperialism. During the nineteenth century, when British naval surveys were flooding London with specimens to be classified, inserting them in their proper niches in the Linnaean hierarchy...
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British scientists renaming species that were already named by the native inhabitants of the colonies as a form of oppression.