New gods for a new world: observations on an epigraphic interplay between Greeks and Romans (part 3)
In this paper, I examine the appearance of a certain type of close association between mortals and gods that developed during the late Hellenistic and Imperial era. The phenomenon can be traced in the epigraphic and to some extent numismatic sources, and features members of royal or Imperial houses honoured literally as New Gods, i.e., Nero New (Neos) Apollo, Sabina New (Nea) Hera or Caracalla Neos Helios, etc. Why and when was an old god chosen for the creation and celebration of a new one? I show that these titles are not purely honorific and secondly that these combinations mortal-gods are not random. Rather, they are part of the constant, albeit not always direct, dialogue between ruler and subjects, between Roman emperors and Greek local communities. This particular conversation used traditional religion and civic display as its medium and was expressed through the common language of mythology.
Keywords: Dedications; Ancient Greek Religion; Greek Epigraphy; Cult Epithets; Neos Theos
Transformational distance: a tool of estimating degree of resemblance of architectural forms
Plan of any building can be converted into another by a certain set of elementary transformations. Elementary transformations are the following: creating a wall; deleting a wall; creating a hole/passage; deleting/closing a hole/passage. Transformational distance is number of elementary transformations which should be done for transforming one structure into another: it is supposed that one elementary transformation is one step. Transformational distance is a sample of semimetrics. It is possible to say that transformational distance has been inspired by Levenshtein distance that is the minimum number of substitutions, deletions or insertions needed for words changing. The closer are certain buildings the lower is value of the corresponding transformational distance.
Keywords: architecture; metrics; transformational distance; space syntax; formalization of semiotics
Reconsider virtual world visual culture
Hsiao-Cheng (Sandrine) Han
Most of my previous research participants were Westerners, and those research findings showed that Third Culture residents must learn to be more accepting and tolerant. However, the few non-Westerners I interviewed did not agree with this statement. Therefore, I wonder, what if the majority of the research participants were not Westerner, would the research result be similar? I wonder, in virtual worlds, who is benefited from the cultural creations? Who are the creators? What messages are they delivering? And who are the audiences? What they might think about the culture that is appropriated? Maybe cultural exchanges and mutual respect are the solutions to cultural appropriation in virtual worlds?
Keywords: virtual world; visual culture; Third Culture; Barthes; culture appropriation
Some thoughts on the history of Ainu nominalizing suffix -i/-hi in its connection with indefinite object/patient marker i-
In Ainu language there is nominalizing suffix: -i/-hi and there is indefinite patient prefix: i-. It is possible to say that the prefix has meanings of “something”, somebody” and the suffix has meanings of “item”, “issue”. V and VC syllables of modern Ainu were ʔV and ʔVC syllables correspondingly in Late Jōmon – Yayoi. And thus, it is possible to say that both morphemes had completely the same material implementation: *ʔi. And, thus, it is possible to conclude that modern suffix -i/-hi and modern prefix i- are derivations of the same morpheme, i.e.: *ʔi that seems to have been a fully significant word meaning “item”, “issue” “something” in Late Jōmon Ainu and could be placed left hand and right hand from the nuclear position. Prepositive *ʔi later became prefix and postpositive *ʔi later became suffix.
Keywords: Ainu language; Ainu language history; nominalization; indefinite patient
The code of Africa: adinkra
The article is devoted to the African symbols of adinkra and their meaning for understanding the culture and way of life of Ashanti people, who live in the southern part of Ghana. They are a “translation of thoughts and ideas, expressing and symbolizing the values and beliefs of the people among whom they occur”. The most important problem for researchers is that linguists do not regard adinkra as true writing. The author suggests that adinkra may be the ancient mathematics of Ashanti. The multi-faceted nature of the concept of adinkra and the sphere of its application in modern society is especially noted.
Keywords: Ghana; Ashanti; adinkra; symbols; code; cloth; clothing; traditions