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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here are some feedback to essays, and oral presentations. wondering if this sounds like Ne dominant.

"The core ideas here are strong, and fully substantiated. The main weaknesses the general flow. There's a sense of jumping around a bit, not helped by a digression into Russian history! So it will certainly do as a reasonably strong essay"

"This is a thoughtful essay, which tackles the topic in an interesting way. At present, the structure needs work, as it's hard to understand some of your points and how they relate to your (unstated) thesis. Including specific examples to illustrate your ideas would help with this – I have the feeling that some of your best points are still inside your head, and didn't make it onto the page."

"Your argument is hard to follow because the ideas are unstructured – you move from one point to other without making it clear how they link up. The main thing to ask yourself as you put together your essay is: “How is this idea relevant? How does it strengthen my argument?” Always give your main point first, rather than leaving it until last – that will help keep both you and the reader on track. When you discuss each idea, only use quotes, paraphrases and examples which support your claims; don’t digress into irrelevant side-issues. You can find more on how to develop and structure an argument"

"Your speech is eloquent, and I love your use of synonyms it's impressive, however, most people do not have such an extensive vocabulary. It can be hard to follow so even through you make valid points they may be lost."

"You were very analytical almost to the point of confusing!!!"

"Very refreshing speech, and was very informative, though it was hard to follow when you explained philosophical knowledge to critique the methodology of climate change."

What do you think?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
“It is bitterly ironical that an Englishman of all people should need to argue the point at all to his countrymen; seeing that historically we have made the cause of nations rightly struggling to be free our own cause.” - J. Enoch Powell.

Throughout the ages, empires have risen and fallen, conquered vast lands in the pursuit of the nation-state’s self-interest. One of the most renowned empire is the British Empire, which at its summit was the largest empire in history. Many historians have argued whether empires, particularly the British and French empires, were beneficial or not. Niall Ferguson not only declares that the British Empire had a positive effect on the globe, but also that liberalism was Britain’s greatest legacy. This paper will seek to examine, and discuss whether or not, according to Niall Ferguson, liberalism was the British Empire’s greatest achievement before the demise of Britain’s rule. This dissertation will define the concept of liberalism, look at Britain’s role within slavery, Britain and capitalism, and Britain compared to other Empires.

First of all, before this paper proceeds, it is of the upmost importance that the concept of liberalism is defined. In recent times Americans with conservative views tend to pigeonhole the concept of liberalism as individuals with an interest in social progression. It seems to be quite apparent that because of America’s immense influential contributions to western culture, that that term is beginning to be generally held in other Anglophone nations. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary states that the term liberalism can either be: (a) A theory in economics emphasizing individual freedom, and usually based around Laissez-faire principles. (b) A political philosophy based on the belief in progress, in the righteousness of the human race, autonomy of the individual, and safe-guarding civil liberties(Merriam-Webster). This will be the definition that will be used, in both of its terminologies for the remainder of this piece.

Ferguson states that liberalism was Britain’s greatest legacy, while it can be contested what was the greatest contribution Britain gave to the world, one must endeavour whether or not liberal philosophy was founded, or adopted within the British realms. The origins of liberalism begins around the seventeenth century, from the ideas and principles of a British philosopher named John Locke, whom is considered to be the architect of liberalism. (Godwin, 2002, p. 68) The ideas of John Locke later gained prominence within the United States and France. Adam Smith, a Scottish economist later expanded liberalism into an economic thinking with his book ‘The Wealth of Nations’. It is clearly unanimous that British thinkers were the progenitors of the liberal philosophy that now emanates within western societies.

Despite the fact that British thinkers were responsible for the ideation of liberalism, many critics of the British Empire contend that Ferguson is irrefutably wrong. The main aspect to why the British Empire did not cause the emergence of liberalism is mainly because of the role in which the British Empire took part in regards to slave trade. While it is true that Britain played a key role in slave trade, it is also true that Britain was the first nation to abolish slave trade in 1807(Drescher, 2011 p. 131). Drescher analyses Britain’s motives towards the abolition of slavery, and discusses whether or not the British Empire decided to permanently ban slave trade on the merit of virtue, or if it was in fact an economic decision. He states the following:

“The history of slavery flowed directly from the ebb and flow of capitalism, the principal economic system of modern times. In phase one (mercantilism) the profits from the expanding slave trade, and slavery provided the wealth that financed the British industrial revolution. In a second phase, beginning with the American Revolution and the shift to free trade capitalism, irreversible, continuous decline of the British slave system made it an encumbrance to the emergent British economy.” (Drescher, 2001 p. 133)

Drescher is asserting the fact that the motivation of Britain abolishing slave trade is perhaps the fact that it eventually became a hindrance to the natural progression of the British economy, and British prosperity. Drescher continues stating that not only was Britain the world’s leading industrial power in the nineteenth century but it was also the hub of anti-slavery(Drescher, 2011 p. 133). When one considers it, a global economic power would have the interests in preventing other nations from rising, and having the same influential power as the British Empire did. This is seen during the Congress of Vienna, in which Britain made a secret coalition with France and Austria, to prevent Russia, and Prussia from gaining more regional influence(Dupont, 2003).

Economic liberalism is another concept in the general term of liberalism. Britain’s most defining aspect in comparison to other empires is perhaps the fact that the emergence of capitalism primarily began in Britain. According to Ferguson, the British Empire took the stock exchange market from the Dutch, and applied it to their empire, making them an empire of capital(Ferguson, 2003).

During the life and times of Adam Smith, Britain was very much an imperialistic empire that practiced mercantilism. Adam Smith refuted the idea that mercantilism was beneficial for Britain. According to Sullivan, Adam Smith believed that because of Britain’s relationship with her colonies, that it was imbalanced, and inefficient. The monopoly ensured that Britain invested an excessive amount of capital to colonial trade, which robbed Britain of capital to invest and expand in the British market(Sullivan, 1983). Sullivan continued stating the following.

“Smith argued that if England operated on the basis of free trade, her capital would naturally flow into the most efficient and productive channels, and be distributed in a balanced way between home and foreign markets. Smith believed that there was great opportunity for profitable investment within England itself, and that the nation would benefit if some of the capital withdrawn from colonial trade were invested at home.” (Sullivan, 1983 p. 600)

Sullivan reiterates the thoughts of the founding father of economics, Adam Smith. I very much concur with the above quote. While Britain was innovative with the advent of the stock exchange, and being an ‘empire of capital’(Ferguson, 2003). It is also clear that Britain had the potential to become a more liberal nation sooner, though her mercantilist, and imperialist agenda’s seems to have prevented the progress of liberalism within the British Empire.


While it is easy to assert that modern western values are transcendent, it is also important that one recognises that Britain at the time in comparison to other empires was more socially liberal. Russia, a rival empire at the peak of the British Empire, was very much an autocratic state. The closest resemblance in Russian history to a liberal society is perhaps in the 11th and 12th century in what was at the time Kievan Rus. The city-state Novgorod saw the development of a remarkably cultured and by the standards of the day, a liberal society(Sixsmith, 2011, p. 19). However Sixsmith states that when the Mongol yoke invaded, Russia became according to Sixsmith:

“Isolated from Europe, Russia missed out on the renaissance, her national progress interrupted for more than 200 years. In some respects she would never fully catch up with Western Europe’s cultural and social values.” (Sixsmith, 2011, p. 29)

Throughout Martin Sixsmith’s book Russia: A 1,000 Year Chronicle of The Wild East portrays the Russian Empire being an autocratic state as a recurrent theme throughout the book(Sixsmith, 2011). France before Napoleon Bonaparte was no different to Russia, which like Russia and Spain was an Absolute monarch(Ferguson, 2003).

To conclude, at first glance it may be the case and it can be easily argued that the British Empire’s most defining legacy is not liberalism. The matter of being responsible and having been an essential role within slave trade routes, would make any human question Britain being synonymous with the word liberalism. Though that is dependent on how one defines what is the definition of liberalism. In regards to Niall Ferguson whom is an economic historian, it could very well be the case that Ferguson is thinking more in the terms of economic liberalism, than social liberalism. I agree with Ferguson if such a premise is true. Sullivan outlines the the issue with the British Empire in regards to economic liberalism. while it was the case that Britain emerged as a global influential empire of capital, it had the intellectuals that could have made Britain unlike any other Empire in history. However it is important to realise that the ideology of liberalism not only originated in Britain, but Britain was in comparison to other empires far more liberal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
In the late 20th century the concept of multiculturalism has been a skirmish among several groups with special interests. The proliferation multiculturalism without questioning the concern of causality consequences is a phenomena unlike any other in recent times. Antagonists of multiculturalism generally have displayed concern about social cohesion, and the impact differing moral traditions have in a heterogenous society. This dissertation will seek to examine and discuss the theories of multiculturalism, the concern for social cohesion, and the rights of women within a multicultural society.

Before this paper progresses I will first analyse the semantic concept of multiculturalism. According to Malik, (2010, 450) states that there are two distinctions within the multiculturalism, which are dubbed 'hard multiculturalism' and 'progressive multiculturalism'. Hard multiculturalism is presented as an immutable ideology, whereby it is deprecated by immolating the progress of women's rights for the benefit of cultural and religious traditions. The second ideation which is 'progressive multiculturalism' deviates from the former because it does not abolish core values such as gender equality. Using the same verbatim as Malik:

“Although 'progressive' usefully captures multiculturalism's compatibility with ideas of gender equality, it also encourages the erroneous view that debates about cultural difference necessarily raise a problem of values.” (Malik 2010, 451)

I believe Malik overlooks a few crucial issues in regards to progressive multiculturalism. Firstly in order for 'progressive multiculturalism' to be successful, it suggests that the cultures with contrastive views of society are disparaged; this creates a dichotomy between traditional values of a peer-to-peer society and western ethics. Mishra illustrates the paradox with 'progressive multiculturalism', stating the following:

“It is important, I believe , to locate multiculturalism as a problematic essentially around the visible, for without that cultural visibility (colour, religion, dress, food) multicultural theory may be replaced by a theory of 'critical assimilation'.” (Mishra 2004, 182)

While I concur with Mishra and associate it towards a conundrum of Malik's 'progressive multiculturalism'. I don't think that Malik's differentiation of multicultural theory should be dismayed. Though I think it does need more emphasis in the public domain, since so many critics of multiculturalism lambaste the idea of 'hard multiculturalism'.

In the public domain adversaries of multiculturalism are often portrayed as racialists and bigoted, irregardless of their intellect. Such ostracism and execration towards contender's of the theory is uncalled for. A recent antagonists to multiculturalism is Andrew Fraser. Fraser express's a concern in regards to the matter revolving around social cohesion. Fraser suggests that the issue of multiculturalism is that it may be the case that culture is not a social construct but genetic (Fraser 2005). Fraser suggests the following that:

“Only a people such as the English, characterised by the "non-kinship based forms of reciprocity" associated with Protestant Christianity, monogamy and companionate marriage, nuclear families, a marked de-emphasis on extended kinship relations, and a strong tendency towards individualism could possibly succeed in creating such a "society of strangers.”” (Fraser, 2005)

In other words, Fraser is suggesting that individuals whom are genetic similar to Anglo-saxons are able to an individualistic society, whereas other 'races' have vested interests in the progression of their collective identity, which leads in his opinion discord within the realms of society (Fraser 2005).


One of the main criticisms to multiculturalism is that of tolerating cultural and religious attitudes to certain pressing issues. Women's role within society has been moulded by the moral traditions within each culture. While we can suggest that progressive multiculturalism could guide us to 'successful multiculturalism', where the sanctity of human rights are protected, it also points out fallacious view that there is a problem of values. (Malik 2010, 451) This generally advances into the thought of modernism, that the values of western society are transcendental. This then suggests a distinction is made that their traditions, culture, and religion are invalid, because it is incongruous with the universal view of established human rights. This is then attributed to 'backwards' thinking. (Malik 2010, 451)

However I believe it is important to recognise that irregardless of the moral traditions that other cultures have in regards to the rights of women; it needs to be realised that western values are not transcendent. Kilbourne's video Killing Me Softly 3 presents the undertones from a parochial society that is slowly adapting to gender equality. Kilbourne analyses that women's image within advertising is objectified, and treated as submissive (Kilbourne 1999). If we are to censure other cultures indignation towards women then perhaps it'd be also wise to rectify the social values within western society.

To conclude this dissertation has examined methodically the ideational differences between 'hard multiculturalism' and 'progressive multiculturalism'. The paradox of 'progressive multiculturalism was outlined, suggesting that by altering cultural rituals could potentially detract and potentially create a monotonous view. The paper has looked into two sceptical views apropos to multiculturalism, which are social cohesion, and women's right among other cultures. Adversaries to multiculturalism outline social cohesion in a heterogenous society is irreconcilable. Fraser's solution is to rethink the white Australian policy, and progress towards homogeneity. Fraser also suggests that cultures may not be social constructs. Women's rights within society is another issue of concern that needs to be highlighted within the theory of multiculturalism. The treatment of women within muslims societies can be seen with abhorrence by western societies, however it is important to identify that western values are not divine, and that other cultural rituals should be respected.
 

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The frequent theme of your explanations being "unstructured" and how they jump around a lot with seemingly non-obvious connections suggests Ne. Your use of logic has Ti written all over it.

Coming from an xNTP, your essay looks similar to many that I've written before I force-made a habit of reviewing and structuring my writings (which I still find tedious to do...)

Based on what's been given here, I'd wanna say xNTP but I cannot in any way conclude with any certainty if you're an Introvert or Extrovert, and hence if you're Ne-dom or Ne-aux.
 
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