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Groomof Tang Dynasty and theVenus of Willendorf: A Comparison

Thepalmer art work here is a full dimensional human figure. Myobservation is that this is a man standing with the right hand raisedand folded. The hand could probably mean a sense of power orauthority that this man portrays. The facial expression of this manis of a person who looks happy or contented. He is looking towardsthe sky which may suggest that he was at the height of power.Although this is an ancient Chinese art work, the facial featuresgive you an idea about a mixed western characteristic. Particularlythe eyes and nose show distinct western appearance. Moreover the manis well dressed in ancient expensive cloaks. This suggests that theart is of a man who was wealthy.

Theart work is referred to as the figure of the standing groom. It wassculptured during the Tang dynasty in the ancient period of 618 to906, in ancient China by an unknown artist. The material that madethe sculpture is earthenware, which is a pottery material. Lead glazeis used to bring out the shade of green and beige colors of thecloak. The figure is 13 and1/4 inches tall (Pope 30). The groomstands with his right arm raised as if to show or indicate reign. Hislapelled cloak is glazed in green and amber. The trousers and highboots that the groom is wearing indicate that he was indeed Persian.His unglazed head clearly retains discernible traces of his facialfeatures (Pope 28). In addition, the facial features indicate thatthis groom was directly painted into the earthenware surface of thebody.

Moreoverhis costumes and some painted details underline the fact this groomwas a foreigner. There is a distinct western appearance observing hisnose and eyes. The historical explanation is that this groom was fromcentral Asia and had more experience with horses than anybody else(Pope 25). In this regard, his kind was hired to manage the horses ofthe Tang elite during their dynasty. Due to this fact they were afamiliar sight in the capital of Tang called Chang’ans.

Unlikethe standing groom the Venus of Willendorf portrays a carving of awoman. The carved woman is naked showing full obese woman whosefacial details are withheld by the artist. It is very clear that theartist has deliberately emphasized her sexual organs clearly anddetailed. This sculpture is an idol that perhaps epitomizes femalefertility or female procreativity (Hephaestus 11). On the other handthe standing groom is fully clothed with his facial features clearlyoutlined by the artist. All human physical body parts are clearlyillustrated.

Thetype of materials used by both artists is totally different. Thestanding groom is made of earthenware pottery. The technique employedin this piece of art was that it was first fired at a relatively hightemperature of about 1000 degree Celsius (Pope 30). It is importantto note the green paintings on the earthenware that emphasize thegroom’s green and beige color of the cloak. This is because of thewhite clay that was applied at the surface of the piece. This whiteclay created room for the glazing process which is directed atdecorating and illustrating the object (Pope 30). On the other handthe Venus of Willendolf is carefully carved the only technique thatmade carved the piece from a fine limestone stone (Hephaestus 11).There is however no painting or another technique that is employedhere to bring about any decoration.

Therepresentation to the human body of the standing groom indicated aperson who was regarded high status in the society. This is becauseof the type of technique employed particularly the use of decorationsusing the glazes (Pope 30). The glaze was applied to the standinggroom through the painting technique. It is obvious observation thatthe head and the extremity of the standing groom were unglazed. Thischaracterizes the process of glazing that was employed to make thepiece more beautiful and also try and achieve an imitation of anexpensive bronze art pieces (Pope 31). This process was reserved forthe high, imperial and elite in the society.

Howeverthe Venus of Willendolf lacks any sort of decorations only traces ofochre that produce red tints. The representation to the human body isconcentration laid on her sexuality. Normally in any human body aface is a key feature. Despite this knowledge, the artist hasintentionally withdrawn her face and hence her identity. Therepresentation being her sexuality, the artist has mainly andcarefully illustrated her sexual organs very carefully carved(Hephaestus 12). In this regard the Venus of Willendolf is to beregarded as an anonymous sexual object rather than a person as in therepresentation of the standing groom. It is hence the physical bodyof Venus of Willendolf and what it represents that is importantaccording to the artist.

Thecultural representation of the standing groom is very evident fromhis appearance and the type of clothes he is wearing. Theinterpretation is that this particular piece of art showscharacterizes some imported cultures to the then Tang dynasty (Pope32). This is such from his appearance, the type of clothes and mostimportantly he was well conversant with horses. This indicates thatthe person represented was wealthy enough to keep a stable ofimported horses or may have aspired to (Pope 31). In this particularcultural setting, this activity was reserved for the rich andwealthy. It was a favorite pastime activity of both men and womenaristocrats. It is also evident to know the most prominentinterpretation was the Tang cultural influence from the west.

Incontrast the Venus of Willendolf represents a woman and mostparticularly not an ordinary woman. Her specialness is wellrepresented through the well developed areas of the sculpture thatreveal that she is obese and not pregnant. This particular sculptureis believed to date back to Paleolithic period (Hephaestus 8).According to history, this period indicates that the most culturalhuman activity was hunting and gathering. In this sense, it was notpossible for anyone to grow obese easily under such circumstances. Inthis regard the artist has clearly shown that the woman had gonethrough great trouble to create the likeness of her. Further it ispossible that her torso and her hairstyle indicate that she was aprominent female goddess. The interpretation is that it is possiblethat women in Paleolithic period had a great significance in thesociety unlike now (Hephaestus, 8).

Thestanding groom represents an era when there was a significant arteryinnovation by the fine art that is produced. This art was howeverreserved for the wealthy and rich because of the culturalrepresentation. It was a period when the Tang dynasty had a strongmilitary and a system of centralized civil service that as a resultbrought about stable political rule and a stable government (Pope29). Further the standing groom represents an era when China hadgreat interactions and relationships with her neighbors, particularlythe West (Pope 30).

Onthe other hand what makes the Venus of Willendolf interesting is itsexplicit portrayal of obesity. In Stone Age very few male figureshave been discovered hence indicating the traditional culture ofhallowing female bodies as fertility symbol (Hephaestus 12). It isvery important to note this distinct difference between the two arts.While the standing groom represents material wealth and possession,the Venus of Willendolf represents the human basic social needs. Thisis sexuality, fertility and procreation.


Itis very possible to understand the humanly representations of thesetwo pieces of art. They both represent the great innovations and thecultural representations of their works. It is important to note thatsince ancient times, skilled workers in such work were greatlyvalued. The beauty that was derived from their works was of highsignificance to their cultural lives were often reflected andrepresented in their work. The standing grooms for instance depictsthe cultural believe and high regard of wealth and materialpossessions by the Tang dynasty. The Venus of Willendolf bring tolight the traditional culture of celebrating women through the nudesculptures to emphasize the important role they play in the humanlives. Beauty in arts was for a long period depicted through nudesculptures. These were seen to bring to light the emphasis of thegoal and underlying meaning in their work.


HephaestusBooks. Articleson Paleolithic Periods.London. Hephaestus Books Publishers, 2011, Print.

UphamPope. PersianArt from Prehistoric Period.Iran. A survey of Persian Art.2005, Print

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Gandhi’sTake on Issues

Gandhidefined Swaraj as the condemnation of modern civilization. Hisnegative opinions on western modern civilization extended and spreadto all its full aspects. In trying to understand Gandhi’s rejectionwestern civilization is based on values that hold the upper hand ofany individual (Brown and Patel 7). That regardless of how dedicatedan individual may be to certain or particular value, it isinconceivable that such an individual would not subscribe to anyother value (Gandhi 29). Anytime there is a multiplicity of valuesthere is bound to be conflicts of these values. It is important inthis case to note Gandhi’s full dedication to non-violence, truthand other important human values.

Thereforean individual must choose when two values willingly or unwillinglyconflict. The value that holds true for any individual it so holdstrue for societies and civilization. Gandhi’s perception was thatwestern civilization was more violent, a value that he so muchdisliked (Brown and Patel 7). He mentions that societies differ notso much with respect to the absence or presence of some significantvalues as they do with regard to the sphere of different values. TheMeta principle usually determines the sub domain and domain of everyvalue. Such Meta principles are fundamentally constituencies ofcivilization (Gandhi 29).

Gandhi’scommitment to non-violence was on a very high social order. In moderncivilization, he saw high degrees and features of violence embodiment(Gandhi 30). His characterization and of civilization andmodernization was such that violence featured most prominently. Thisevaluation therefore comes to the conclusion that such values weretherefore unacceptable to him as an individual. This is hence withoutany recourse to analysis in a complex framework. It is hence cleartherefore that his intuitive understanding and thinking ofcivilization was close to identifying with the meta-principles todetermine its sub-domain and its domains (Ramakrishnan 5). There isalways a constant conflict between two civilizations regarding theirinferiority or superiority to each other.

Normallya person usually internalizes the embodiments of that civilizationthat he so belongs to. From the vantage point of understanding suchinternalized meta-principles any civilization with thoroughlydifferent meta-principle, is bound to be found wanting (Ramakrishnan7). For example, Europeans regarded all other non-European countriesto be fundamentally flawed. This kind of judgment was reflected inGandhi and any Indian on non-Indian civilizations. Given any twodifferent civilizations, there is bound to be conflicts onsuperiority from two different vantage points. The existingrelationship between social and individual values is usually not aone-way relationship. As the two classes of values impact each otherit is important to find a sustainable equilibrium (Gandhi 30).

Gandhi’sinsights on industrial technology were largely very negative andcritical anti-technological views. One major insight was theunintended consequences of modern industrial technology (Gandhi 36).These insights were normally based on his personal beliefs and hisobservations. His main opposition and negative sentiments werelargely on railway development. He blamed railway for foreigninvasion of India by the English. He remarked that railways wereresponsible for bubonic spread, that railways initiated mass movementof people from one place to another. He notes that before thefoundation and development of railways, natural segregation was theone that existed. He further noted that railways had a negativeimpact on the economies of people as they led to famines. This Gandhiexplains that locomotion increased the frequency developments of darkmarkets (Ramakrishnan 6).

Inaddition railways according to Gandhi accentuated the evil naturesand manners of men. That bad people with negative intentions couldeasily fulfill their evil desires and evil intentions. He notes thatthe holy places were contaminated by such people who could now easilyapproach them (Gandhi 35). In the beginning before the development ofrailways, people normally travelled long distances in pursuit offulfilling their spiritual lives (Gandhi 36). Gandhi’s observationof this was that such people were usually devoted to theirspirituality and were largely genuine individuals. He notes thatafter the development of railways even rogues were able to visit suchholy places and practice their roguery.

Insome intuitive sense Gandhi’s perceived reaction was that there wasa sort of an organic relationship between technology and societalvalues. His views concerning technology and the meta-normativeconsideration would eventually suffice. In that not everyvalue-system would automatically agree with a particulartechnological structure (Ramakrishnan 8). It was therefore impossiblefor the two systems to mutually co-exist. Regarding this organicrelationship between the value systems and technology, one was boundto automatically choose the anti-modern technology stance (Gandhi35). Gandhi was well aware of this organic relationship to theproducts of technology that resulted because of it. From his personalperceptions unlike most of his contemporaries that were resistant oftechnology.

Gandhi’stakes on the English to Indian growth, is a conclusion that theiractions were largely aimed at impoverishing India. The Indian had ineffect to act fast and in unity. This is more because of the factthat they unified all Indians from every part and brought about theidea of nationalism (Brown and Patel 10). He notes that the governorused to look upon such unity with disfavor. The congress desired tobe the central controllers of all national revenue and expenditure.Just as the Canadian model, they desired a system of self-rule.Gandhi appreciates the fact that congress and its officials initiatedthe foundation of Home Rule. It was an honorable deed to reward themwith such an appreciation. Not doing so would only be a sign ofungratefulness and would retard the fulfillment of Indian’sobjective (Gandhi 13).

Gandhifurther recognizes the fact that the real awakening of Home Rulehappened after the partition of Bengal. The people of Bungal triedeffortlessly to reason with the then Lord Curzor who disregardedtheir prayers. This is so because he thought that Indians could nottake any effective steps and would only prattle (Gandhi 11). But theBritish were shocked by the partitions that took place thereafterthat they could not equate to any other act. This is so as the peopleof Bungalis knew their power and were determined to partition theirgrievances through the writing of the press. They were ready to useeverything they had including force. This spirit according to Gandhispread to the northern and southern parts of Punjab and Cape Comorin(Gandhi 12).

Gandhialso acknowledges that the awakenings caused unrests but gives hopeby indicating that people would recover with time. These unrests ordiscontentment was at the time necessary and useful. They have as aresult produced great works of the Indians and Englishmen(Ramakrishnan11) . However, Gandhi also acknowledges the manyimprisonments, deaths, and banishments that happened as results ofunrests. He indicates that as much as the unrests were necessary andgood they were deemed to produce bad results.


Gandhi.K. Mohandras. IndianHome Rule or Hind Swaraj.India. Yann FORGET Publishing House. 2003. Print

Brown,Judith, and Parel, Antony. TheCambridge companion to Gandhi.Cambridge. Cambridge University Press. 2011. Print

Ramakrishnan,Niranjan. ReadingGandhi in the Twenty First Century.Los Angel. University of California, 2007, print

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Freedomof Speech in Popular Culture Works

Thefreedom of speech in the United States is an important value thatcomes with the enactment of the first Amendment. While it is a basicright, its enjoyment is viewed differently in the perspective ofpopular culture, from the legal scene. Advocacy of unpopular ideasthat may be against public policy or ideas that many people finddistasteful are permitted in this amendment. In addition, free speechis associated with criticism of the government is allowed that shapeshow America is governed. There is an emerging popular culture in themedia that is enjoyed by over 98% of the American population. Takingtwo works of popular culture, this discussion will explore howfreedom of speech is reflected in the works.

Thepopular culture in the media has over the time given usefulinformation to the American population. Free speech by certainpresidential candidates makes it possible for the Americans to makewise voting decisions. A reality show like the one ran by JohnStewart brings to light some flaws in the speech made by prospectivepresidential candidates. In his announcement speech, Donald Trumpexposed his direct dismissal of this very important subject matter.Instead of demonstrating his readiness to work with the rest of theinternational community, he calls America the “dumping site” forthe problems of other countries (Counts 1). Stewart highlighted thisflaw and also exposes Trump’s obvious contradictory remarks.

Freespeech allows individuals to freely express personal opinions or giveideas on any issue. Free speech in America has given Americansopportunities to discussing political issues. On the talk show hostedby Stephen Colbert tackling national issues reveals a lot to bedesired from the speeches made by presidential hopefuls. Such is fromthe candidate Jeb Bush, who repeatedly says the wrong things orrather, chooses wrong responses in their personal speeches. Matterslike the gun policies have over the recent months been debatableissues (The Late Show 1). Although the issue of gun ownership rightsis a sensitive matter, Jeb chooses the wrong kind of words. Thisforms his stand on such matters from the speeches gives. Thishighlight by Colbert consequently creates a different mindset in theAmerican people, on political matters.

Freespeech in American media outlets forms the basis of expressing publicor personal opinions on debatable matters. Usually this free speechin the media houses is often framed in a certain way that is meant tocreate public opinion. This framing is usually meant to sway theconsumer’s attitudes. It is important to have knowledgeable andstrong popular cultures that hold educated free speech or opinionsthat could be expressed and shared. Free speech is thus enhanced andstrengthened where citizens fully participate in a sharing of ideasfor or against governance. Thus political socialization, economy andeducation are developed in the process of free speech. Free speechculture forms the dynamics of today’s governance. Free speech hasgreat power in forming public opinions that in turn influences andshapes the government.

Thepopular culture of free speech is able to clearly educate the courtabout the impacts of the judicial systems on individuals orcommunities. This is the greatest impact that the popular culturerepresents the society`s understanding and interpretation of law. Itsuccessfully assures the legal fraternity that the legalrepresentation is available and most importantly effective. Thefreedom of free speech in the popular culture in the practices offictitious courtrooms and the trials represents or serves as theacceptable versions of the reality in the rule of law in individualsor the communities in general (Elkins 760). This in return inspiresconfidence in the legal fraternity about the encouraging lessons onlaw in any American way of life. The freedom of free speech thus canbe said to represent the dream judicial world of the communities.

Thefree speech exercised by both Stephen Colbert and John Stewart haveimmediate effects on the candidacy of the presidential hopefuls thatthey aired in their show. It is more likely that they lost more votesof the audience of the show. In this regard it is important to fullydetermine whether by exercising their free speech freedom, Colbertand Stewart created harm to the said candidates. The impact by theSupreme Court in such instances cannot be fully immediate but it ispossible that in the long run the court will be impacted (Ellen, 29).This is in determining whether there is a need of judicial analysis.This analysis is meant to study the quality free speech rights bysuch individuals who may be creating political restrictions to thepolitical speeches given by the candidates.

Freespeech does not and cannot enhance or detract from the authority ofthe Supreme Court. This is because the Supreme Court views theseexternal ideologies of the court’s judicial system as subjectiveideologies. Individual’s preference through free speech is not ableto influence the Supreme Court’s legitimacy orientation (Ellen 30).It is important to note that most free speech is based on assumptionsrather than the actual policies of the judicial system. The court’spolicy making proposes rational basis for distinguishing the court’snormal policy making as moderate, conservative or even liberal.Therefore the argument is that these subjective personal ideologicalperceptions must demonstrate their legitimacy.

Thefreedom of free speech enhances the rule of law in America. This isbecause the popular culture is predominantly media that is watched byalmost 98% of Americans. It symbolizes the societal view of the legalculture and its processes. People are often influenced by popularculture as much as they are influenced individual experiences, mostof what is known about the world and law included is comes fromsymbols rather than the actual realities (Elkins 770) The Americanpopular culture represents all the things imagined to have occurredor believed to exist. They are events that have actually not beenexperienced. This actual representation of the rule of law in its ownsymbolic meaning is an effective conclusion, that the society is wellaware of its existence and its perceived or actual processes.

Thefree speech culture on legal matters educates the public at the sametime they also entertain. This is as demonstrated in the two talkshows by Stephen Colbert and John Stewart.These fictitiouscreations are essential to the legal structures because theycontribute to the popular interpretation and understanding of the law(The Late Show 1). However the education of public on legal matters,law and lawyers included, is an aggravation of an abstract concept(Elkins 765). That`s actually what we might perceive to be educativemight turn out to be not educated at all. It is therefore importantwhether it is perceived to be solely for entertainment, the onlyversion of the public reality of law, lawyers and legal institutionscan only be derived from the free speech obtained from popularculture work.

Popularculture does indeed provide a platform for debates in a democraticcountry. It is important to note that there is a direct relationshipbetween free speech and democracy. In this regard free speech can beregarded as a vehicle of public participation to political issues(Late night show 2). It is a vehicle through which Americans can getinvolved in all issues of the day and actively participate ininformed decision-making. Hence it is proper to say the free speechby popular culture develops a vibrant democracy (Ronit and Bryant21). It facilitates the majority rule policy where there is acollective will and consensus on issues. Consequently as a vehicle ofdebate and public participation free speech enhances and improvespolitical decision-making processes.

Itis important to note that free speech offers an interesting andengaging content to the public on constitutional matters like freedomof speech. More people are increasingly getting to understand theirright of speech from the way it is presented in the popular culturework. Hence people expect some specific outcomes and actions onspecific matters through the freedom of expressions (Ellen 38).Although such expectations are usually unrealistic as demonstrated bythe popular culture, they may call for a conflict between the publicand the legal structures if the determination does not agree withboth sides.


Counts,Dave,Trump Announces run for Presidency… Jon Stewart looses his mindover it. Retrievedfrom, &lt 7 November,2015

Elkins,R.James. Popularculture, Legal Films and Legal Critics.Marymount University and Law School of Loyola. Retrieved from,&lt

Ellen,O. WhatIs a Successful Legal Career?,Women Lawyers Journal. 2015, Vol. 100 Issue 3, p28-33.

Ronit,D., Bryant, G.LawyerSatisfaction in the Process of Structuring Legal Careers.Law&amp Society Review,2007, Vol. 41, Issue 1, 2007. p. 1-50

TheLate Show with Stephen Colbert,What Does The Jeb Say?Retrieved from, &lt 7November, 2015