Suggested Answers to the Short Quiz

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Suggested Answers to the Short Quiz

Post by johnkarls »


Suggested Answers to the Short Quiz -- Slavery vs. Revolution: Basic Social Anatomy

Question 1

Do you think the Egyptian pyramids were built by slaves or by well-paid unionized workers?

Answer 1

What do you think???

Question 2

Do you think the Acropolis of Athens was built by slaves or by well-paid unionized workers?

Answer 2

What do you think???

Question 3

Do you think those Roman triremes (seagoing war galleys with three decks of oarsmen) were powered by slaves or well-paid unionized workers?

Answer 3

What do you think???

Question 4

Was Spartacus a Roman slave-gladiator who led a famous slave revolt which eventually attracted 30,000 rebel slaves and whose defeat required THREE Roman military campaigns, the last involving 40,000 highly-trained Roman soldiers? Was this imbroglio portrayed in a 1960 epic Hollywood movie starring Kirk Douglas that received the Golden Globe for Best Picture and 4 Oscars?

Answer 4

Yes. Yes.

Question 5

BTW, have historians recorded that during the THIRD Roman military campaign, the 40,000 Roman soldiers in the legions facing Spartacus HAD TO BE REPEATEDLY “DECIMATED” in order to force them to fight the slaves?

Answer 5


Question 6

Is “decimated” one of those words in the English language whose meaning has undergone a radical change over time?

Answer 6


A good example of words with radically-changed meanings is “SWAG” which currently means, per Merriam-Webster, “goods acquired by unlawful means – booty, loot.”

“SWAG” was invented during the Vietnam War when Yours Truly served as a U.S. Navy Unrestricted Line Officer (1967-1970 – Ensign > Lieutenant (j.g.) > Lieutenant) when it was a slang term universally used by lower-ranking military personnel to mean, derisively, a “Silly Wild-Ass Guess” made by any higher-ranking military personnel in formulating orders!!!

DECIMATION originally described the Roman military method universally used to force soldiers to fight.

The disobedient unit was lined up AND EVERY TENTH MAN was hacked to death on the spot.

If the disobedient unit refused to fight AFTER BEING DECIMATED, they were lined up AND DECIMATED AGAIN until they fought (or, in theory, ceased to exist).

Yours Truly is NOT aware of any occasion on which Roman troops were DECIMATED more than once before they were willing, however grudgingly, to fight – EXCEPT in the case of the Roman legions fighting Spartacus and the slaves!!!

Today, “decimation” is commonly used to describe a catastrophic reduction in number, rather than a 10% reduction.

[Just like “SWAG” originally meant the ignorant orders of U.S. military commanders during the Vietnam War and morphed to mean the Chutzpah of any imperious person and even to mean the booty or loot acquired by such imperious people (the latter two definitions probably influenced by the fortuitous similarity between “SWAG” and “swagger”) -- “decimation” has morphed from meaning a 10% reduction to a virtually-100% reduction, probably because hacking to death every 10th person was horrific and horror is the underlying concept behind a catastrophic reduction in number.]

Question 7

Was it necessary to REPEATEDLY “DECIMATE” the Roman legions in order to force them to fight Spartacus and the slaves BECAUSE THE ROMAN SOLDIERS SYMPATHIZED WITH THE SLAVES???

Answer 7

What do you think??? Let’s discuss!!!

Question 8

How did the Roman slaves learn about Spartacus’ revolt in order to join it? The internet? Television? Radio? Telephone? Telegraph? Pamphlets following the invention of the printing press? Smoke signals? Or “word of mouth”?

Answer 8

What do you think???

Question 9

In getting slaves to revolt, does the communication have to be truthful? For example, could it have been a ruse perpetrated by the Roman government to identify disloyal slaves?

Answer 9

What do you think???

Question 10

In getting slaves to revolt, do the slaves need an expert appraisal of the chance of success in order to join – for example, based on relative numbers and available weapons? In this regard, was Nelson Mandela who led the successful South Africa independence movement, astounded at the success of the American Civil Rights Movement in obtaining its legislative successes of the 1960’s – because Mandela could NOT believe a racial minority could achieve such objectives?

Answer 10

Re expert appraisals, what do you think???

Yes, Nelson Mandela thought it was impossible for a racial minority to achieve such success!!!

Question 11

Does the title of our focus book (“The Square and The Tower: Networks and Power From The Freemasons to Facebook”) describe one of the world’s foremost historians taking a second look at history through the lens of (1) vertical hierarchies (“The Tower”) comprising governments, armies, corporations, etc., versus (2) horizontal networks (The Public Square) comprising the people?

Answer 11


Question 12

Does he provide a zillion historical examples of the tension between hierarchies and the people – sometimes erupting into revolution and sometimes not?

Answer 12


Question 13

Is his “Part IX: Conclusion” humorously entitled “Facing Cyberia”?

Answer 13

Normally we view Wikipedia articles as only as good as their footnotes. However, per Wikipedia’s article entitled “Cyberia,” the term can mean –

In technology

• Cyberia, London, one of the first Internet cafés, and the first in the UK
• Cyberia (book), a 1994 non-fiction book by Douglas Rushkoff
• Cyberia (fest in SJCE), an annual technical fest conducted by IEEE-SJCE
• Cyberia (ISP), a West Asian ISP serving Lebanon, Jordan and Saudi Arabia
• Cyberia (YouTuber), is known for her electronic music with no words. Such as Forbidden City (also a place), and Cyber Symphony.

In culture

• Cyberia (video game), a 1994 video game
• Cyberia (album), a 1995 album by Cubanate
• "Cyberia", a song by the Afro Celt Sound System from the album Seed

In fiction

• Cyberia, the penal colony to which Dave Lister was sentenced in the Red Dwarf book Last Human
• Cyberia, the techno-rave night club featured in Serial Experiments Lain
• Cyberia, a book by Chris Lynch

Presumably (since Yours Truly hasn’t read that far yet in our Focus Book), the Conclusion’s title “Facing Cyberia” is meant as a humorous mis-spelling of “Facing Siberia” which, during the Stalin era, meant criminals and political prisoners facing exile and hard labor in the harsh and freezing wilds of Siberia.

Yours Truly assumed upon reading the title “Conclusion: Facing Cyberia” that our author believes that making a better world with the help of cyber will require HARD LABOR in, perhaps, UNFRIENDLY WILDS!!!

Question 14

Is he optimistic that the people can use their new tools, primarily cyber, to achieve their goals?

Answer 14

What do you think??? Let’s discuss!!!

Question 15

BTW, is Yours Truly guilty of extending our author’s historical analysis back to the ancient Egyptian/Greek/Roman civilizations that were built on slavery, whereas our focus book’s title ending in “From The Freemasons to Facebook” implies that our author wanted to confine his analysis to FREE common people and their horizontal networks?

Answer 15

Absolutely guilty!!!

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