I'm working on something with the sloppy premise that over the gradual shift from print to digital, communications isn't a zero-sum game. The general idea is that the introduction of things like first the Internet and e-mail, and later social media and texting, have increased the total number of messages people receive, and that people are increasingly "messaged at" over time. What sources can help me prove this, or disprove it? [more inside]
I'm looking for instances of kids pointing out the hypocrisy of grownup society/adult etiquette, or questioning the reasoning of their elders. The funnier the anecdote, the better -- especially when the kid has a point. [more inside]
Am I demisexual and is this rare? [more inside]
I am a transwoman thinking heavily about transitioning, looking for resources that discuss the day-to-day and social aspects of the process. Can you recommend blogs, books, articles, or anything else? Any "Go trans! Yay!" things would be helpful, actually. [more inside]
How can I not appear lazy to co-workers for not working during break? [more inside]
I'm writing a dystopian sci fi novel and it's coming along sparkingly. Yay. One of the plot lines involves a shortage of women, and the development of new family units utilising polyandry. I'm looking for resources - primarily non-fiction - of both positive and negative experiences of polyandry. [more inside]
Do our expectations of when to get married one day match up? [more inside]
What Web sites, resources or tools have you found for channeling the zeitgeist at any particular time? This would be slightly different from reading the "news." For instance, The New York Times offers a good overview of what's happening in the world, but the "Most Shared" sidebar is a far better indicator of what people are talking about. Twitter has emerged as a good resource for this, but there's such a huge amount of data there that I wouldn't know how to comb through that. [more inside]
So I'm trying to find examples of cultures/peoples/ethnicities/religions that are significantly dissimilar to the main city/culture/groups that surround them. Like finding a group of Amish people in Detroit. Or the one someone gave me of the significant Hasidic population in the scantily clad nightlife world of South Beach. What other current examples are there in the USA and Canada of unexpected groups in unexpected places?
My husband believes that men are just as pressured to be attractive with the same consequences socially if they aren't attractive. I think the pressures on women are MUCH higher (and much more unattainable), and that the social fallout is much larger if a woman isn't attractive and following the social norms of attractiveness. Who is right? And if I am right, help me explain this to my husband. [more inside]
So two books I really love are Heaven to Betsy and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I love how they go into the details of the period they take place, particularly the fashion and food. It was also only recently I realised that they take place roughly around the same era. It really surprised me because they are so completely different to one another. Francie has an alcoholic father and the family can barely get food on the table; Betsy's biggest ordeal is falling in love with a boy that doesn't like her back and not studying for an essay contest. So my question is two-fold and is aimed at requesting book suggestions. [more inside]
How to reconcile the differences between your origin and daily society? [more inside]
I've read Paul Boyer's By the Bomb's Early Light (1985) and Margot Henriksen's Dr. Strangelove's America (1997), and both focus on American society and its reactions to the bomb. Now I'm looking for books and other material that give an overview of other countries in the atomic age. Can you recommend any? [more inside]
I'm in NYC and am interested in traditional gentlemen's clubs, like the University Club and The Knickerbocker. Is there an accessible version of this kind of club? Something with a library and bar and maybe food? I'm middle class and don't have an especially high-flying job and don't have any amazing social connections in the city, so it would have to be a straight-forward application process. Does anything like this exist or would it defeat the point of these clubs if it did exist?
What are some subtle or lesser-known examples of current-day real-world USA being a dystopia? [more inside]
Back in 1987 or so, I read a children's/YA book that begins with a young girl who survives an end-of-the-world event (nuclear? meteor?) alone with her father and brother in a huge nuclear bunker. The second half of the book is about a girl with the same name who is a descendant of the survivors. Can you help me figure out what this book was? [more inside]
So, frequently I will read people (eg on this very website) talking about local communities, how great they are, and the various things which are apparently destroying them. I tend to be "what are these things? Why do people like them so much? I don't get it.". So, where can I read about these things? [more inside]
How do I keep my job if a manager hates me? [more inside]
I'm a US transplant to Germany. I listen to a lot of lefty podcasts from the US: Democracy Now!, The Young Turks, Majority Report, Best of the Left, Citizen Radio, etc. My German is getting pretty good after two years, and I'd like to listen to similar issues discussed auf Deutsch. Suggestions? Vielen Dank!
I recently came upon the work of Noam Chomsky and it opened up a whole new world of information and ways of seeing the world. How can I become more informed about our world's recent history and be accurate about it? [more inside]
I'm interested in resources (particularly blogs) that will help me learn about the interesting aspects of other cultures. I would like to be exposed to ideas that will challenge my assumptions about what is "normal" and about how society should work
I am trying to find an article I read online, sometime in the past month or two. [more inside]
Anthropologists, please help-- I'm looking for unique examples of interpersonal relationships or family/friendship customs that are blatantly transactional, specifically in so-called "primitive" tribes or far-flung cultures that exist/have existed within the past century. The more surprising, extreme, or out-there the anecdote, the better. [more inside]
What are some good simulation/strategy computer games that don't emphasize violence or warfare? [more inside]
I know Walter Benjamin treasured a drawing by Paul Klee, Angelus Novus (angel of history).. So much so that he wrote about it in his essay "Theses on the Philosophy of History". [more inside]
I am looking for fiction or non-fiction books (or movies - documentaries or fiction) about societies that are collapsing or falling apart -- anything from the late Roman Empire to 1990s Yugoslavia. I'm especially interested in books or movies that focus on the lives of regular people while the collapse is happening. I am specifically NOT looking for sci-fi dystopias or fantasy novels, so please don't recommend any.
My friend and her roommate found a wounded stray dog, turned him over to the humane society in hopes that his family would find him, and discovered that he had been send to the pound a day later and then euthanized last night while all week she was desperately trying to find his family AND get someone at the HS to tell her where he was. If she had not been lied to, she would have adopted the dog before he was killed. My friend is a highly involved volunteer worker in our community and she wants to take this public and do something to improve the situation... help us figure out what we can do! [more inside]
I am looking for examinations of the Internet and World Wide Web that use the structure and/or history of the city as a metaphor. [more inside]
I'm an officer in the Vegetarian Society at my school. We want to get hoodies made, but for some reason, not a single one of us has been able to come up with anything beyond "Meat is Murder" (which would be tongue-in-cheek to us, but no one else would see it that way and we'd rather not look like really smug, insufferable twits) and "Give Peas a Chance," which I think is horrendous. So, basically, does anyone have any suggestions for what to put on such a society's shirts?
How do you deal with the damaging ways that society evaluates women? [more inside]
What are some books, personal essays, articles, and videos that explore emotional intelligence and resilience as skills that can be developed in neurotypical people?
I would like to hear about experiences of overcoming social anxiety from people who have a) successfully done so or b) embraced and made a happy life despite it. [more inside]
Friend keeps calling other women whores and I find this offensive, but she thinks I'm "censoring" her [more inside]
Korean culture filter: Are you familiar with Korean culture from 30 years ago? Can you tell me if these experiences were normal in terms of the social culture at that time? [more inside]
I feel very ambivalent, like I lack perspective (but hope is abundant!), but I am not sure; this state of not knowing and being unsure of myself and what I do is tough [more inside]
I have this nagging feeling of guilt from a situation that happened about a month ago. I'm not really sure what I should have done in this situation, and I'm conflicted by my feelings. It wasn't the end of the world, but it really frightened me and I'm wondering how I could have better handled it. [more inside]
What is "The Organization" [more inside]
Deeper Underground: What's this song about? [more inside]
Do egalitarian heterosexual marriages exist as a cultural phenomenon? [more inside]
I have no idea how to talk to normal people about my not-normal relationship, particularly when it comes to parents. At what point does it become strange? [more inside]
I read (and failed to bookmark) an article or blog post a week or two ago that drew parallels between the idea of "corporate personhood" and the "quantify everything, optimize your own happiness" ethos shared by many young people today. Basically the gist of it was that many people were emulating corporate "persons" rather than real people as role models. Can you help me find it?
Enlighten me on current state of the art thinking, discourse and vocabulary around gender politics please. Terminally unique details inside. [more inside]
How do I get better at managing multiple social cues? [more inside]
To what extent do American Highschools resemble the stereotypical American Highschool seen in just about every movie and TV show ever, withever present competition for social status, rigidly defined cliques, omnipresent bullying, etc... etc?
What could slow down the pace of change (religious/scientific/economic/cultural) in a civilization? (Please see specific details inside.) [more inside]
I'm interested in resources relating studies on discrimination in the United States today. I'm thinking of something along the lines of this Tim Wise post linking to a bunch of studies, but something a little more comprehensive, recent, without links through Facebook, if possible. Am particularly interested in data along the lines Wise mentions, about contemporary discrimination against African Americans in housing, employment, etc. Does this exist? Thanks!
When children's books first became inexpensive enough for average parents to buy, were they looked down upon as a technology which limits a child's imagination? [more inside]
Is there a cultural dynamic to groupthink? [more inside]
How do I get people to really EXPERIENCE DnD? [more inside]