Act Utilitarianism

Question 1

Violent acts are acts that cause or intend to cause harm to a person, animal or property. Acts of violence fall under two categories, those premeditated and those not premeditated. As such, pre meditation means a person or a group of individuals participating in planned violence with an objective(s). Random violence occurs without prior planning. Certainly, the justification of violence relies on the ethical state of those involved. As such, whether or not their actions are acceptable depends on social ethics that affects people.

Act utilitarianism

Act utilitarianism is a theory that attempts to explain or justify the course of action taken by individuals. Tentatively, this theory explains that the course of action an individual takes is justifiable as long as long as the result or the action results in beneficial to the persons it affects. Undoubtedly, this theory originated from England between the 18th and 19th centuries. Jeremy Bentham, in his writings that regarded his opinion on the laws England that should be adopted, came up with the expression ‘the most good for the greatest number’. He advocates that the most appropriate laws are the laws that have the most benefit to the highest number of people after consideration of all the negative effects.

On the other hand, the utilitarianism faces many dilemmas. Chief among them is the definition of benefits and harms. Contrastingly, what benefits an individual may not be beneficial to another. As such, conflicting ethical and religious values between diverse cultures result in varied perceptions of rights and wrongs. Premeditated violence, particularly war, is often a result in conflicting ideas and views on what is wrong and right. The sense of compromise that the theory hopes to attain is difficult to achieve. Nonetheless, the rule of law poses an additional problem. The theory does not consider justice in some instances. For instance, the suggestion by some writers that South Africa would be better off under white rule is justifiable by utilitarianism, despite the injustice. African nations that bestowed power upon the black or mixed race governments experienced social and economic issues.

Anthropology and social policy

Anthropologists study human beings as social creatures. Tentatively, it is the study of human behavior; it highlights the differences in human behavior and the role that culture plays in that diversity. Anthropologists suppose that humans not only respond according to biological nature, but also depend on culture. The cultural differences and significances studied by anthropologists are essential considerations in the decision making process. The moral standing of an individual depends on their culture and how they uphold it. The moral standing of a person influences their tendency to resort to violence.

Globalization and modernization results in rapid changes, in culture and morality, this can cause an alteration in social policy. The field of anthropology is a constant contributor to research and advocacy for social policy. Certainly, anthropologists are historically strong opponents of social injustices such as war, racism, and marginalization. Moreover, knowledge in anthropology is relevant in explaining violent tendencies. As such, the violent tendencies form the basis for social injustices among the people.

Many people employ the utilitarianism theory in making, as well as, justifying their decisions. In the case when an individual takes a course of action or reacts to a situation, depends on the moral values of the individual. Tentatively, morality establishes how they justify their actions, the goals they intend to achieve and how far they are willing to extend. Understanding of what makes people’s decisions is crucial in the study of violence. As such, in order to understand violent trends, one must know how people justify them within themselves.

Question 2

Apaches and White men differ in many aspects, in retrospect to the book portraits of the white man (Basso, 1979). The most significant difference is their social behavior. The Apaches framed their conversation styles differently from the white men. The informal interactions between the Apaches especially their interchange between the use of English and their native languages often had a deeper meaning. Their conversations, especially those that involved the white men like humor about them showed their treatment by them, their opinions, as well as, their insecurities and fears as regarded by the white men.

This book explores the humorous elevation of the Apaches to superb effect. The conversation styles reveal the differences between the two cultures and their attempts to understand each other. The Apaches rarely used English; instead they stuck to their own language. Primarily, their informal conversations showed how they felt about them. An elderly lady explains how they feared the white men and their perception towards humor. Only children ridiculed the white men until much later (Basso, 1979). This changed later as the Apaches began to understand the white men as such, improving the interaction between the two cultures.

Changes between one language to another portray implicit messages (Basso, 1979). When the Apaches changed from their native language to English, they change their mode of speech, as such, altering their tones, tempo, volume and pitch. As such, it presented a means of communication thus allowing humor. On the other hand, the English language was not common among the Apaches. On the other hand, it was vital for some undertakings such as grocery shopping. Preferably, the Apaches rarely used English among the people. This takes place in the conversation at the shop, when an older man starts speaking to the other in English, the whole crowded shop bursts into laughter.

A crucial aspect of the Apache small talk is their jokes about the white men, their imitation and the symbolism it presented. According to Basso, the imitation jokes regarding the white men are an indication of two aspects of their relationship with each other. It portrayed a message about the relationship between the Apaches at that time, and others which leads to the development of the present relationship (Basso, 1979). The Apaches joking about the white men were an indication of the social class differences, as well as, their perception towards them. The use of code switching for Apaches passed across information about their surrounding or setting, their social identity, as well as, their relationship with the object of their joke. As such, it presented their dissent at the new occupation of the white men.

The white men, on the other hand, seemed to view Apache as less important. They rarely learned their language, and this meant that the interaction between them was minimal. The Apaches saw no need for the English knowledge and reveled in their conservatives. They have resisted efforts towards modernization, choosing to practice their culture. They are most proud of the fact that they continue to learn and speak western Apache. Missionaries, as well as, the Anglo Americans, used several techniques in an attempt to diminish their language to little success. As such, the missionaries employed their evangelism approach in trying to make changes.

The Apaches and their interactions in informal settings as discussed in the first and second chapter were incredibly symbolic. They used humor and imitation to highlight the state of events and how they thought about the issue. Their small talk and imitations of the white man revealed their feelings towards the treatment, as well as, the white man’s behavior. Indubitably, it highlighted their air of superiority and their thoughts towards the white man- Apache relationship.

Question 3

Economic aspects of globalization

Globalization is a worldwide trend of exchange and integration of economic, cultural, political, technological ideas. It is as a result of improvement in transport and communication, new laws and political initiatives to open up international channels of trade. Globalization involves several aspects of international transactions, trade and the flow of capital, cross border movement of goods and diffusion of technology. Nonetheless, globalization forms the pinnacle of interaction between various cultures. As such, the book explains the changing global food system and the role of globalization in it.

The change from subsistence agriculture, as shown in the story of the tomato, to industrialized global trade in the corporate tomato demonstrates the role of globalization in agriculture. The book "Tangled routes", explains the complex connection between production, distribution and consumption, through Tomasita’s story. Tentatively, the book traces the journey of the corporate tomato from the fields of Mexico to the fast food shops and consumers in Canada. Contrastingly, it compares it with the shorter journey of the Tomato from pre colonial terms. Through it, all it demonstrates the role of globalization in the growth, processing and trade in tomatoes and the role of women in it.

The tomato originated from the Andean region, the region that is now northwest Peru. Its first name was "tomato" a name given to it by the Aztecs. The word means “a round thing” in their native language, and the birds carried the seeds to their land. They developed several varieties and crossed it with other crops using local traditional practices. Wild species gave the tomato resistance from plant diseases (Barnt, 2002, p 11). The introduction of multicultural agribusinesses in Mexico forced indigenous workers out of their farms. The farms owned by such companies were large, therefore, reducing access to arable land. As such, the indigenous farmers were the same people who worked on these farms. They got low wages since the companies believed they could supplement the pay from picking tomatoes on the large farms with the returns from their small farms. The dilemma backed the indigenous farmers to a corner; as a result, it prompted their resistance.

Poor farmers forced out of their land fought back in an uprising which became a worldwide phenomenon. The Zapatista struggle began on the day of the North American trade movement, 1st January 1994. It became a front in the fight for indigenous rights. Activists concerned about the ecological footprint of global transportation joined in the fight. Researchers developed mechanisms to calculate the energy cost of the global food system. Both companies and ordinary people meet these costs. William Rees developed such a tool, which calculated energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions (Barnt, 2002, p 24). These mechanisms showed the different effects on the environment of transporting tomatoes from Mexico and production in greenhouses, in Canada.

In the summer, the amount of tomatoes from Mexico reduced as Canadians could get them from local farms. As a result, there was an improving culture of greenhouse cultivation of tomatoes. Several factors influenced the new farming practice. The tomatoes could be produced all year round with the control that was possible from this technique. Many people preferred them since they tasted better than those transported from Mexico. There was growing demand for tomatoes, and this drove increased local production in Canada. These tomatoes were, however, still harvested by migrant Mexicans who participated in the FARMS program (Barnt, 2002, p 27). The tomato went full circle as seeds were now effortlessly available in the cities of Canada. Food security initiatives encouraged indigenous gardens. Undoubtedly, they utilized knowledge from community farms all over the city.

The corporate tomato

The industrialization and globalization of the tomato followed the same route. Monoculture replaced the initial indigenous farming during the colonialist movement. Cash food production improved with the introduction of American capital. The introduction of American technologies improved farming practices in Mexico. Technologies that reduced dependence on physical force opened up labor for women (Barnt, 2002, p 12). Multinational companies joined in the trade, claiming ownership of the crop even though it originated from a foreign land. This meant a loss of ownership and knowledge of tomato growth, for the locals. The fight for indigenous rights centered on land and food. Liberalization encouraged trade and transportation of tomatoes from Mexican farms, to Canada through the United States. It is notable how extensively knotty it is to transport the tomatoes from Mexico into the US as opposed to transportation into Canada from the US.

Globalization aspects

International trade is the biggest driver of globalization. The business opportunity in supplying foreign goods, in this case the tomato, encourages multinational companies to invest in its production, in Mexico. The companies set up shop in foreign lands and established large farms where they employ locals to work for them. They introduced new farming practices and technologies which enhanced large scale cash crop production. Trade agreements and policies by governments make it easy to exchange knowledge and for foreign companies to gain ownership of farms across borders. Immigrants, as well, play a fundamental role in the countries where they migrated. Migrants from Latin America who earn minimum wage operate greenhouses in Canada. In isolation, high demand leads to shift of these technologies back ‘home’. Greenhouses in Canada ensure all year production of tomatoes in feeding the growing appetite. Food security concerns lead to encouragement of techniques and technologies used by indigenous communities. These methods originated from the migrant population and practiced in modernized farms such as those at the rooftops. Mexican companies, as well ventures into the business; companies such as Santa Rosa and Del Monte participate in large scale production both for the local and international market.

Link between producers and laborers

Production companies use local labor in their farms. Different roles and amount of work in diverse stages of production lead to gendering of roles. Technological improvement and introduction of technology that reduces dependence on force opened up farm work for women. Women plant seeds and watch them as they become seedlings, prune and take care of them thus, the plant matures well. Many American companies have machines for picking as opposed to Mexico where young women engage in picking practices. Men load and offload the tomatoes into crates, at the same time, as women participate in sorting of the tomatoes. This trucking is predominantly a male job; as such the men have to go in pairs during the job delivering. These trucks deliver tomatoes to production companies, which then supply the product to the consumers. Retail stores and food outlets are the targets since they have an enormous market platform.

Conclusively, the stories of the tomato and the corporate tomato reveal the impact of global interaction, both socially and economically. Globalization led to an exchange of cultures and practices, as well as, augmented technologies. Economic aspects of globalization encouraged trade which was the principal driver of all the exchange and integration. Despite the globalization effects on the environment and local livelihoods, in the long run the exchange is beneficial to both parties.

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