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P.Clodius

USA/Rome Parallels

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Um, I beg to differ here. America is two continents - North and South America. The United States of America designates those states - e.g. Rhode Island and New Hampshire which chose to unite. This did not make those American states which did not choose to unite - e.g. Chile and Canada any less American. There was an America before there was a United States thereof, and simply because one set of states chose to unite does not take the other states less American.

 

I am a citizen of the European Union. I am European. I certainly would not say that the Swiss and Norwegians (who are not part of the EU) are any less European. That said, I am again outside my sphere of competence here, so will happily bow to more qualified opinion.

When you say "Irish", you may be talking about the the inhabitants of the island Ireland (Ulster included) or using the demonym for the Eire (with the small closer islands included).

 

You're mingling the use of two deifferent gentilics (both equally correct); one for America (the Continent) and other for the country called "United States of America"; sorry, but there's no official alternatives neither for the name of the country nor for its demonym.

 

BTW, neither Chile nor Canada have the word "America" included within their respective official names; that's why when Osama Bin Laden declared war on America (SIC), they weren't involved.

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Um, I beg to differ here. America is two continents - North and South America. The United States of America designates those states - e.g. Rhode Island and New Hampshire which chose to unite. This did not make those American states which did not choose to unite - e.g. Chile and Canada any less American. There was an America before there was a United States thereof, and simply because one set of states chose to unite does not take the other states less American.

 

I am a citizen of the European Union. I am European. I certainly would not say that the Swiss and Norwegians (who are not part of the EU) are any less European. That said, I am again outside my sphere of competence here, so will happily bow to more qualified opinion.

When you say "Irish", you may be talking about the the inhabitants of the island Ireland (Ulster included) or using the demonym for the Eire (with the small closer islands included).

 

You're mingling the use of two deifferent gentilics (both equally correct); one for America (the Continent) and other for the country called "United States of America"; sorry, but there's no official alternatives neither for the name of the country nor for its demonym.

 

BTW, neither Chile nor Canada have the word "America" included within their respective official names; that's why when Osama Bin Laden declared war on America (SIC), they weren't involved.

 

Okay, let me check I have it right :) - Canadians are North Americans, and Mexicans are Latin Americans but they are not real Americans, in the sense that say, Hawaiians are Americans. And while we might talk of plant and animal species as being American even if they are not in the USA, we should not include humans. And when the 'colonial masters were ejected from American soil' this was in fact the soil of the United States which did not at the time exist, though America - including the non-US bits did. And while California was in America at this time, it was not in fact American until it became part of the United States.

 

We now need to point this out to institutions such as The Organization of American States ....

 

The point I am rather labouring here is that the writer of the article unnecessarily conflates 'American' with' United States' (which does actually work as a gentilic) and in so doing does indeed create confusion where a more careful choice of words would make it clear. As it said, it was a nit, which I feel I have now all too comprehensively picked. As we have wandered somewhat from the main topic, I'll happily allow you the last word, and drop the subject.

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When you say "Irish", you may be talking about the the inhabitants of the island Ireland (Ulster included) or using the demonym for the Eire (with the small closer islands included).

 

You're mingling the use of two deifferent gentilics (both equally correct); one for America (the Continent) and other for the country called "United States of America"; sorry, but there's no official alternatives neither for the name of the country nor for its demonym.

 

BTW, neither Chile nor Canada have the word "America" included within their respective official names; that's why when Osama Bin Laden declared war on America (SIC), they weren't involved.

 

Okay, let me check I have it right :rolleyes: - Canadians are North Americans, and Mexicans are Latin Americans but they are not real Americans, in the sense that say, Hawaiians are Americans. And while we might talk of plant and animal species as being American even if they are not in the USA, we should not include humans. And when the 'colonial masters were ejected from American soil' this was in fact the soil of the United States which did not at the time exist, though America - including the non-US bits did. And while California was in America at this time, it was not in fact American until it became part of the United States.

 

We now need to point this out to institutions such as The Organization of American States ....

 

The point I am rather labouring here is that the writer of the article unnecessarily conflates 'American' with' United States' (which does actually work as a gentilic) and in so doing does indeed create confusion where a more careful choice of words would make it clear. As it said, it was a nit, which I feel I have now all too comprehensively picked. As we have wandered somewhat from the main topic, I'll happily allow you the last word, and drop the subject.

No, you didn't get it right.

 

You're again mingling two different gentilics; "American" for the Continent (where Canadians and Mexicans are and Hawaiians aren't) and "American" as the only official demonym for the inhabitants of the United States of America.

BTW, "United States" is not a gentilic (a word that denotes the members of a people or the inhabitants of a place).

 

Ireland is in a similar situation, as I showed you in my last post.

 

And of course, when I say "United States of America", I'm not talking about Mexico, even if its official name is "Estados Unidos Mexicanos" (United Mexican States) and that country is obviously in the American Continent (until recently, that was the case for Venezuela and Brazil too).

 

Alternative folk demonyms like "Yankee", "Usonian", "United Statesian", "Uessian", "U-S-ian", "Uesican", "United Stater" and so on are just not up to the job; simply try them on a websearch. Or even better: ask your Usonian friends.

 

Anyway, I'm always open to your suggestions on how should we call the people of the US.

Edited by ASCLEPIADES

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Such parallels may be sometimes amusing and even ingenious (eg, some from Northern Neil), but hardly ever useful; and of course, there's always the inherent risk of taking it too seriously and too far (eg, like Mussolini).

Didn't think you'd like mine :rolleyes:

 

Doesn't matter, it didn't strain me in any way whatsoever - because I'm not actually trying to find direct parallels given the differences in events, and circumstance. Its like this....

 

Pour two cups of coffee. If you focus hard in detail, all you see is random brownian motion that shows nothing but chaos and convection. If you zoom out a bit, its the same contents apart from some possible milk and sugar. If you zoom out further, you might have different cups placed in different parts of the room. Zoom out again, and you have two cups of coffee that go cold and eventually evaporate if left alone. So what's the difference? Essentially, only the details.

 

So as far as I'm concerned, the parallels I draw are intuitively obvious. But then, I'm not writing a paper for a scientific journal or pouring scorn on others interpretation, so perhaps criticism can also be taken too far?

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Salve, Amici

 

Just for the record; my previous post (the one identified as #14 in this same thread) was open for all the UNRV community; it was not adressed to anyone in particular.

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As individuals a large part of our development comes from situations we can only remember. We remember and apply the experience we gained to a current situation(which of course is not ever exactly the same). Sometimes this learning is not at all useful to us, but it certainly can be. I feel the same is true on a collective, societal level.

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Salve, Amici

As individuals a large part of our development comes from situations we can only remember. We remember and apply the experience we gained to a current situation(which of course is not ever exactly the same). Sometimes this learning is not at all useful to us, but it certainly can be. I feel the same is true on a collective, societal level.

First of all, this thread began long ago on the analysis of the essay Empires of Absent Mind: Rome and the USA from the BBC website by Dr Mike Ibeji about (SIC):

"What parallels can be found between the ideals and the actions of the Roman republic and its 21st century superpower equivalent, the United States of America?"

 

My own conclusion: NONE.

Ibeji's "sperpower equivalency" is not even properly defined.

I can't find there any even remotely potentially useful experience, neither individually nor collectivelly.

I can only find steps A to E from my previous post (#14 on this same thread).

And sorry, but I frankly find it as a quite dangerous line of thinking (neo-imperialistic and bellicose, to say the least).

Mussolini's analogy was not gratuitous.

 

On an entirely different issue, I must conclude from the posts of the half a dozen or so UNRV members that have been posting so far within this same thread that our main topic has evolved into a quite interesting way to a fascinating question:

 

WHY DO WE STUDY HISTORY?

Any guesses?

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The problem is you focus too closely on details when questions like this are asked, so therefore you see nothing similar. A comparison between two empires/nations seperated geographically and chronologically are bound to differ, yet the fact remains that the american constitution was based on that of classical times, that they were a slave using society (albeit one based on race rather than status), that they are a cosmopolitan society built on many nationalities living under an american system, and that american culture is packaged and sold to foreigbn nations. The isolationism of the US is a fundamental difference. Because its a continental country almoist surrounded by ocean, the requirement to fend off foreign aggression is not so keenly felt, although the Cold War and recent Terrorism do create something of a substitute for that. Nonetheless, as part of its foreign committment and security policies, America is moving closer to imperialist doctrines, by necessity (as they see it) rather than territorial ambition.

 

The parallels to ancient Rome are there. That doesn't ean it needs to be an exact representation of past events, just that as with Britain certain trends in human behaviour (and politics) produce similar development in society and its actions, and remarkably, in the case of the US these are partially by design.

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Salve, A III
It is my belief that this topic should be under the empire category considering the changes the US has undergone, and the foreign policy it currently has. As in the Roman Republic, the US empire has kept certain republican institutions, but if analyzed thoroughly, it has clearly made the change from republic to empire.

 

ATG

We're dealing again with the persistent confusion of the use of the word "Empire" for two quite different applications:

- Geopolitically (American Heritage Dictionary), "a political unit having an extensive territory or comprising a number of territories or nations and ruled by a single supreme authority"; such definition would encompass both the Roman Republic (509-31 BC) and the contemporary United States; ie, they both rule over other countries.

 

- The domain ruled by an emperor (or empress), ie. a monarch with a particular title; this is what we commonly mean by "the Roman Empire" (31 BC - 1453 AD). The latter fulfilled of course the geopolitical definition quoted above, but that's not always the case;ie, as for Japan after 1945.

 

In spite of the recurrent allusion to the so-called "dynasties" of American presidents (a metaphorical term at best), I can see no sign that the US may be evolving into a monarchy; au contraire, they are quite more representative now than in 1776.

 

Well, we may be more democratic in 2008 than in 1776, but the case has remained the same: whoever wins the elections will have used methods of vote prevention, cheating, etc. to have gained the office. I believe there is a new documentary out about how GWB stole Florida in 2000. You can choose to believe you live in a true democracy, but the truth remains that it is extremely oligarchal.

 

ATG

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Well, we may be more democratic in 2008 than in 1776, but the case has remained the same: whoever wins the elections will have used methods of vote prevention, cheating, etc. to have gained the office. I believe there is a new documentary out about how GWB stole Florida in 2000. You can choose to believe you live in a true democracy, but the truth remains that it is extremely oligarchal.

Democracy always puzzles us with the contrast between its ideals and its realities, between its possibilities and its achievements.

Edited by ASCLEPIADES

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:):D:D

 

Nothing puzzling about democracy at all. Its still about what you can get, only in democracies you have have to ask.

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