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Thursday, November 13, 2014

HISTORY - Africa, Uncolonized: A Detailed Look at an Alternate Continent

By Frank Jacobs


What if the Black Plague had killed off almost all Europeans? Then the Reconquistanever happens. Spain and Portugal don't kickstart Europe's colonization of other continents. And this is what Africa might have looked like. 

The map – upside down, to skew our traditional eurocentric point of view – shows an Africa dominated by Islamic states, and native kingdoms and federations. All have at least some basis in history, linguistics or ethnography. None of their borders is concurrent with any of the straight lines imposed on the continent by European powers, during the 1884-85 Berlin Conference and in the subsequent Scramble for Africa. By 1914, Europeans controlled 90% of Africa's land mass. Only the Abyssinian Empire (modern-day Ethiopia) and Liberia (founded in 1847 as a haven for freed African-American slaves) remained independent.


This map is the result of an entirely different course of history. The continent depicted here isn't even called Africa [1] but Alkebu-Lan, supposedly Arabic for 'Land of the Blacks' [2]. That name is sometimes used by those who reject even the name 'Africa' as a European imposition. It is therefore an ideal title for this thought experiment by Swedish artist Nikolaj Cyon. Essentially, it formulates a cartographic answer to the question: What would Africa have looked like if Europe hadn't become a colonizing power? 

To arrive at this map, Cyon constructed an alternative timeline. Its difference from our own starts in the mid-14th century. The point of divergence: the deadliness of the Plague. In our own timeline, over the course of the half dozen years from 1346 to 1353, the Black Death [3] wiped out between 30 and 60% of Europe's population. It would take the continent more than a century to reach pre-Plague population levels. That was terrible enough. But what if Europe had suffered an even more catastrophic extermination – one from which it could not recover?

To read more - http://bigthink.com/strange-maps/africa-uncolonized

Monday, November 10, 2014

ENTERTAINMENT - David Bowie Asks Iman If They Should Just Do Lasagna Again

The man who once played the role of a pansexual alien and came to drunken blows with Lou Reed in a restaurant, looks through the fridge with his wife, a Somali supermodel.

NEW YORK—Saying he would be fine “just taking a load off” and eating in, rock icon David Bowie reportedly asked his wife, Somali supermodel and actress Iman, if they should just do lasagna for dinner again Monday.

The 66-year-old singer-songwriter, musician, actor, and producer, who once reinvented himself as a gender-bending extraterrestrial rock star named Ziggy Stardust, as well as an emotionless Aryan superman named The Thin White Duke, then looked through the couple’s refigerator and, noted they still had a jar of Mario Batali pasta sauce and a “pretty full” box of lasagna noodles in the cupboard...

Bowie and Iman, who are currently deciding whether or not they want to make garlic bread with their salad.

Sources confirmed the nine-time platinum recording artist—who claimed at one point in the 70s to have subsisted on a diet of red peppers, cocaine, and milk—then preheated the oven, started boiling a pot of water, and searched around inside the kitchen cabinets, at one point asking Iman if she had seen the “good baking pan.” In addition, Bowie, who allegedly had an affair with Rolling Stones lead vocalist Mick Jagger at the pinnacle of the glam rock era, suggested that the “fridge needed a quick wipe down” while grabbing a carrot, a cucumber, and a box of organic spinach to make a quick salad. Iman, one of the fashion world’s most legendary ethnic supermodels, noted philanthropist, and entrepreneur, reportedly ripped a page off of a notepad hanging on the refrigerator door and wrote “Windex, aluminum foil, milk” below a lengthy list of items...

Sources confirmed the rock legend, recognized for mixing British mod, mime, and Japanese kabuki styles to bring art rock to a mainstream audience, pulled on a windbreaker, slipped on a pair of Asics sneakers, and reportedly spent several minutes considering his grocery list...

Hey, hon, DVR The Amazing Racenow so we don’t miss the opening,” said the man who once hallucinated that witches wanted to steal his semen to produce a child to be slaughtered in a satanic sacrifice. “And just text me if you need me to pick up anything else.”...

POLITICS - Potty-Mouthed Princesses Drop F-Bombs for Feminism by FCKH8.com

Saturday, November 08, 2014

HUMOR - Adult Wednesday Addams



Adult Wednesday Addams - Wednesday has finally moved out of the Addams Manor. First on the agenda: Find an apartment. Second: Terrorize everyone. - Wednesday interviews to be an assistant at a cutthroat Hollywood agency. Good thing cutting throats is one of her special skills. - Wednesday discovers the perils of online dating. Her date discovers the perils of Wednesday. - The morning after a drunken hookup is always awkward, and sometimes lethal.

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