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Containers 24 January 2019

Ingenuity in hindsight ... the history of the container is an example of how really ingenious solutions often boring appear once the solution becomes a normal part of everyday life. Think of the paper-clip,... more

UN Human Rights 24 January 2019

Organising humanity ... the UN Declaration of Human Rights, examined in this page, is a pretty ambitious attempt at social organisation (as indicated by the adjective 'universal' ... perhaps a little... more

Observing behaviour 24 January 2019

Observing organisation ... clearly, we only know about the 'organisation' of 'society' if we go out there and actually observe what the evidence shows us. This involves something like the skills of sociologists... more

Imagined communities tasks24 January 2019

This page contains two online quizzes related to the text 'Imagined communities'. You can find this text by clicking on the icon in the box below - and you can then read it on-screen, or print it out. more

Human rights? 23 January 2019

The fundamental structures of human rights ... the concept of 'human rights' is actually relatively recent, isn't it? The idea that there are basic moralities that should govern human behaviour has been... more

Sci & tech & econ 23 January 2019

But what exactly do we mean by 'science and technology', and where did these two vastly influential fields of human thought come from? The eminent - and somewhat dissident - Cambridge economist Ha-Joon... more

Parkinson's 23 January 2019

The experience of illness ... if you have robust good health, illness seems like a strangely irrelevant other dimension - especially when you're young and everything works properly. That said, everyone... more

Print versus internet 23 January 2019

.The democratisation of ingenuity ? ... the text provided in this page addresses the changes involved in moving from print-based cutural systems to internet-based systems. Arguably, the internet means... more

Print versus internet tasks23 January 2019

The exercises in this page are based on the text provided in the box below. Open the text and read it through carefully. Internet publishing textNote that the text contains two sections: 'The Gutenberg... more

How money works 23 January 2019

The ingenuity of money ... the whole point of this text is that money is a very clever and ingenious trick - we use cowrie shells or bits of printed paper to express the value of ... well, practically... more