The literary analysis of Psalm 23

In verse four the writer becomes inconsistent with his pronoun for God and changes it from “he”, to “you”. David stops talking about God and starts talking to God.

He leads me…

He restores me…

He guides me…

Even though I walk through the valley of death I will fear no evil, for You are with me.

You comfort…

You prepare…

You anoint…

Let her go, she is happy

G told me that the day after they prayed for A-Ma, her friend said that A-Ma was already with Jesus, singing happily.

I thought about Buffy the Empire Slayer, when she was brought back to life by Willow and the gang members. They acted like they saved her from eternal torture, completely ignorant of the fact that she was actually in heaven.

She was in heaven, and was forced and dragged to the hell. Yes, the earth is like the hell.

I understand that A-Ma has been unconscious for weeks, and her heart and soul had long departed.

I have to let her go. Do I?

G told me A-Ma is still there, and she is always there. So I don’t have to let her go. I just let the old sick wrinkly body go.

Let that charming smile and innocent expressions go.

I told G that for a long time, I thought I would stop going to church after one day A-MA died.

But it didn’t work out that way.

Instead, I have insisted going to church ever since she has passed away.

After grandma’s death

I left things behind. Sherlock Holmes 2% left. Brothers Karamazov since 33% Intact. Between 11/27 and 12/9, I cried less and less. Twice, yesterday, after I got back in Kaohsiung. Zero, today.

I went to the traditional market to buy some raw food to cook. I felt I could do things I have never done before, such as buying chicken in the traditional market (I only did so in the supermarket, first in the US, then back in Taiwan). But I also was trying to do something that can distract me. Fruit picking, cooking, vegetable cutting, dish washing, and cleaning.

I re-listened to the New Yorker Fiction podcast, love, and something else. I listened the Russian story of Nabokov twice during the trip back to Kaohsiung from Taichung.

The world has lost its color and things have become insignificant. I feel I can take some time do some other things that I didn’t allow myself to do normally. Like what? I actually also think I should do things that I always do, like the psychologist who told me to do so in order to recover from severe depression back in 2011 in Ann Arbor.

I cleaned the room.

I am so tired, and yet energetic.

I can do many things, because time no longer matter.

But I still have to read the articles that I have to teach graduate students tomorrow. I still have to prepare for the talk next Wednesday in Nantou at the only graduate school of Southeast Asian Studies in Taiwan. But my heart is not there, I am keeping myself from my heart by the means of these mechanical things. My heart, burned, hard to get close to or even look at.

My mother said that I should have felt more positively, since I did accompany her mother for 2 more years after I have returned to the island. I would have felt much worse if I was still in the U.S.

True, I told her that I told my uncle the same thing. But I thought she was gonna recover, and last, even if only for a few more months. It still came as a shock, despite the fact that I had been told by the doctor and those dear aunts that now death was anytime, and there was no reason to be too confident.

I was crushed, and yet forced to accept it. What else can I do, except be a better person. I will go to church, wearing grandma’s clothes, for God knows how long.

I will honor her, for she was the most important person in the world, no matter how utterly different we were, and how limited our communication has always been. She was a great character, and I wish I would be that great some day.

That kind, soft, tough, stubborn, pious and cheerful.

And yet don’t romanticize things. For there was an aunt who has devoted herself to taking care of grandma day and night for three whole years. There must be pains and fatigue that we don’t know. Love and warmth that I could never obtain. So I pray to God that she is blessed further.

Pray that I will be kind, soft, tough, stubborn, pious, and cheerful, like the light of the world.

Europe and the People without History Notes II

Commencing in the 1960s, Eric Wolf was already asking the “big question” of Jared Diamond’s masterpiece in the 1997 Guns, Germs, and Steel or the Yali’s Question:

Why is it that you white people developed so much cargo and brought it to New Guinea, but we black people had little cargo of our own?

Even for “The World in 1400″ Eric Wolf explains that “everywhere in this world of 1400, populations existed in interconnections” (1982:71).

非西方世界本來就有很多內部結構、矛盾與差異,但在大歷史論述中往往不被提及,更誇張地以歐洲為中心論述的歷史(如Frank and Wallerstein的作品)。

第一部 連結
第一章 導論
第二章 一四○○年時的世界
第三章 生產方式
第四章 歐洲――擴張的序幕

第二部 尋求財富
第五章 在美洲的伊比利半島人
第六章 皮毛生意
第七章 奴隸貿易
第八章 東方的貿易與征服

they predispose one to think of social relations not merely as autonomous but as causal in their own right, apart from their economic, political, or ideological context” (Wolf 1983:9)


第三部 資本主義


第九章 工業革命





機器的同步:p274-275 親屬的組織或在家的手工業使得工作沒有被嚴密監控、效率最大化,也沒有與機器同步生產,生產力有限。



第十章 資本主義中的危機與變異



  • 政治 <–> (附庸進貢與保護關係)社會(親屬與生產關係)    <–> 經濟
  • 政治 <–> 經濟  (生產關係)


第十一章 商品的流動

1830 the ecnomic slump — railroad iron steal — 1873 Great Depression





如錫蘭引進的Tamil人之後與錫蘭佛教徒vs. Tamil印度教徒的衝突。

東南亞的「排華」問題(其實作者沒有講很多,只有提到馬來亞是維持蘇丹的tributary relations)

capital-intensive plantation
第十二章 新勞工

Manufacture –> mahinofacture

“the pace was set by men and not machines (355) (Landes 1969:121)

Under the kin-ordered mode, kinsmen cannot be hired or fired. A tributary overlord must exercise military force or a functional equivalent to expand or decrease the number of surplus producers under his jurisdiction.Even the salve owner is restricted in his ability to manipulate his labor supply, for he must protect his investment in slaves by feeding them during times when they do not labor. In contrast, capitalist entrepreneurs can hire and fire laborers or vary their wages in response to changing circumstances. (356)









Europe and the People Without History notes I

copyright 1982, 1997

Preface: x A.D. 1400 as the initial dateline for the presentation ….that European expansion everywhere encountered human societies and cultures characterized by long and complex histories…”interlocked” [these developments]

Societies and cultures have always formed parts of larger systems.”

xi mode of production: how a society mobilizes social labor ….the human relations to the natural environment, the social relations of humans to humans, (and institutions and ideas that guide these relations)

xiii  culture refashioning and culture change

xiv “the relations of power that mediate between the mobilization of social labor in society and the mental schemata that define who does what in the division of that labor”

xv “the major forces driving the interaction of cultures since 1492– the forces propelling Europe into commercial expansion and industrial capitalism.”

Part One Conncetions

Everyone has connections. there was no so called primitives or “people without history” (p4)

Saint Simon, Auguste Comte, and Lorenz Stein都在回答社會秩序如何可能的問題,但也將「社會的」獨立出來。(p8-9)

“severance of social relations from the economic, political, and ideological contexts in which they are embedded” (9)

Ferdinand Tonnies ….from Gemeinschaft community to society Gesellschaft.

Foci: 資本主義滲透、全球專業與分工成長、某些人口支配其他人口

Alexander Lesser: “the universality of human contact and influence”  social field and the Evolution of Society (1961:42)

Ch3 Modes of Production

Marxist two axioms: 1) homo sapiens as a part of nature 2) as a social species (73)

人在改變自然的時候,也改變了他們自己的本質(quoted in Schmidt 1971:77-78)(The Concept of Nature in Marx)

a socially interrelated humanity and nature — 如何了解這複雜體?Marx: the notion of labor.

  1. a capitalist mode  (76-78) 資本家獨佔生產工具(科技)、迫使勞工出賣勞力(市場)、剩餘價值最大化 (商人控制勞力過程
  2. a tributary mode  (79-88) 亞洲/封建模式異曲同工,國家透過非經濟方式控制商人(80)、勞力仍由親屬與進貢負責
  3. a kin-ordered mode (89-99)親屬界定權利義務、內部階層男女差異、酋長可流動階層但控制力薄弱,階層化有限


但其實資本主義模仍然是靠軍火支撐 (100),歐洲各國彼此競爭,成為中央集權的國家,遠距離貿易成為國力關鍵。

Ch4 Europe, Prelude to Expansion

Three major points:

  1. 歐洲上升(遠距離貿易開始成為歐洲國家的經濟命脈、內陸國家不如歐洲的重商、戰爭與貿易互相加乘)
  2. 王國上升
  3. 世界各地拓荒開採上升


the transfer to tribute from surplus producer to surplus takers(105)


Part Two In Search of Wealth



Ch 5 Iberians in America

  1. 西班牙挖銀,葡萄牙種糖
  2. The Hacienda (colonial legacies, whether royal corregidroes allowed hacienda owners to run) is not a pre-Hispanic past. (143-145)
  3. 沒有變成奴隸與勞工的成為海盜,從加勒比海一路到西非與馬達加斯加 (155)。
  4. 秘魯商人也從馬尼拉換取中國商品,馬尼拉也有印度商人 (153)。

Ch 6 The Fur Trade (皮毛貿易後:禮物交換是與歐洲人聯手幫助歐洲諸國彼此競爭後的產物)

  1. The Iroquoies: 多語酋長進行confederate coucils,武器由荷蘭英國法國人提供,17th軍火開戰太多促成母居母系社會
  2. the Potlatch: 西北與俄羅斯貿易,也有大量軍火進入,原有母系社會誇富宴變大,酋長部落間階層化出現,給食物變成給寶物(187),19th

Ch 7 The Slave Trade

16th 銀礦工人與糖廠工人,二十七萬,17th加勒比海一百三十萬非洲奴隸,18th奴隸買賣黃金時代,六百萬人,


歐洲人已經當奴隸很久,在拜占庭或伊斯蘭帝國下(p195, 201),十字軍東征(穆斯林與基督徒互相被抓去當奴隸)但非洲大規模?英國與蘇格蘭奴隸、北美印第安奴隸、但都在家鄉附近很容易逃走或叛亂(203)



努爾人那類的非洲部落社會早就已經與歐洲有密切的接觸,絕非沒有歷史的人(230-231)。歐洲的歷史也 不能忽略非洲。

Ch 8 Trade and Conquest In the Orient



Summary of Boellstorff (2008), Coming of Age in Second Life

Originally posted on media/anthropology:



Boellstorff, T. 2008. Comingof Agein Second Life: An Anthropologist Explores the Virtually Human. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

NB – See previous blog entries for more detailed notes on each chapter





Chapter 1. The Subject and Scope of this Inquiry, 3-31

The book is an ethnography of the virtual world Second Life (SL) from June 2004 to January 2007. The aim is to rehabilitate the notion of ‘virtual’ by studying virtual worlds in their own terms. Inquiry into both the historical continuities and changes of this virtual world. The author argues that the notion of posthuman is misleading, for it is in being virtual that we are human. Instead he sets out to investigate virtual worlds as ‘techne’ (human practice that engages with the world and creates a new world as well as a new person: homo cyber). Second…

View original 1,490 more words

Muhammad Cartooons — why portraits are not simply symbols, or a Muslim semiotics

1. Religious Reason and Secular Affection

Saba Mahmood

2. The Muhammad cartoons and multicultural democracies
University of New South Wales, Australia
University of Bristol, UK
3. Between Cult and Culture: Bamiyan, Islamic Iconoclasm, and the Museum

Finbarr Barry Flood
The Art Bulletin, Vol. 84, No. 4. (Dec., 2002), pp. 641-659



阿嬤原本是九個兄弟姐妹中的第五個,前面有兩個哥哥兩個姊姊。前面的大哥自從當了日本兵去了南洋後還沒回來,老二也當兵,大姨婆二姨婆都嫁人了,反而變成 阿嬤是家中大姐。因為家裡需要人力,阿嬤很晚才嫁人,以當時的年紀來說,二十多歲還沒嫁,就會被人笑要做「繼母」。阿嬤婚前就種很多田,比如甘蔗園,收成 很好,很勤快,真作,還去兼差參加靠近台中南邊的南門橋工程,原本是吊橋,要改建成水泥。聽說,當時的土木工程很多都是女人在做的。只要「骨力」就可以 做。阿嬤約莫148公分的嬌小身軀,居然也去做工程。

阿嬤做工程時,女的阿祖派當時只有五六歲的屘舅公送便當去給她吃,還交代他:「如果大姐問你有沒有有吃,你要說你吃飽了」,言下之意就是不準屘舅公偷吃阿 媽的便當。屘舅公就乖乖地從大里走到現在的中興大學附近,等阿嬤中午休息吃便當。阿嬤問屘舅公吃飽沒,他乖乖地說吃飽了,但是他就眼睛金金地一直看著阿嬤 的便當,年紀小也不覺得害臊。







浦島太郎          作曲 三宅延齡      作詞:石原和三郎

一、むかしむかし うらしま

昔昔、   浦島は           很久很久以前浦島太郎

  たす  かめ つ

  助けた龜に連れられて       被他所救的海龜

  りゅうぐうじょう  き  み

       龍宮城へ   來て見れば   帶去龍宮裡遊玩

      え       うつく

      繪にもかけない美しさ      龍宮裡的美景筆墨難以形容


  乙姬樣の    御馳走に      龍宮公主熱情招待

  たい ひらめ まいおどり

        鯛や比目魚の舞踴        鯛魚比目魚跳舞歡迎


  ただ珍しくおもしろく                  稀奇又有趣

  つきひ    ゆめ うち

  月日のたつも夢の中                      時間也在如夢境般裡頭流逝




Ethnographic study: Social network sites are “virtual campfires”

After five years participant observation, anthropologist Jenny Ryan has published her masters’ thesis about the social network sites Facebook, My Space and She created a beautiful web version of her thesis at

In her thesis, she proposes that everyday involvement with these sites can be metaphorically represented as a “virtual campfire” that “bridges the gap between the place of the hearth and the space of the cosmos, potentially reversing what has been called “the disintegration of the public sphere” (Habermas 1962: 175).


Questions of the people on Google.

一位美國密西根州立大學的研究生 Randal Olson,利用 google 搜尋引擎的 data ,做出了一個 google 自動補齊(autocomplete)功能的地圖。

自動補齊,就是你在 google 輸入一個字,後面就自動幫你加上最多人搜尋的辭彙。而這個地圖是由「為甚麼『(國名)』?」的問題所做出來的。