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76 votes

How do we know baroque art depicted obese ladies because of a different ideal of beauty?

Art does not exist in a vacuum, but is rather only one part of the historical record. Just as people comment on our modern standard of beauty today, so does early modern writers on theirs. Fortunately,...
Semaphore's user avatar
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35 votes
Accepted

Is the scarlet letter 'A' a real historical thing?

tl; dr There were certainly laws requiring that adulterers had to wear the letter 'A' stitched upon their garments in the late seventeenth century. The letter was not required to be scarlet - just a ...
sempaiscuba's user avatar
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26 votes

How do we know baroque art depicted obese ladies because of a different ideal of beauty?

A lot of the paintings were commissioned as portraits, why would people pay for themselves to be depicted in an ugly way? Wealth nowadays is associated with a slim, tanned, and shaped body because ...
user36167's user avatar
  • 261
20 votes

What is the name of the theory opposite to the Great Man theory?

Not every thesis has a single antithesis or opposite. However, we can highlight a few trends or schools of thought in historiography (the study of history) that contrast most sharply with the Great ...
Brian Z's user avatar
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13 votes

How do we know baroque art depicted obese ladies because of a different ideal of beauty?

Q How do we know baroque art depicted obese ladies because of a different ideal of beauty? Do we really? We don't. The anthropological constant to be observed is: "women are considered 'attractive' ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
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7 votes
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What is the name of the theory opposite to the Great Man theory?

The opposite view holds that extra-human dynamics govern the courses of events. This is a recurring theme of Tolstoy's War and Peace, a fundamental principle of Marx's dialectical materialism; it is ...
George Chen's user avatar
7 votes

Was it common to brush off Hitler's radical remarks as just figures of speech to whip up the supporters among US commentators in the 1930's?

Here's a couple quotes from a 1932 article in Foreign Affairs called "Hitler: Phenomenon and Portent". This was written by Paul Scheffer, the Washington correspondent of a German newspaper ...
Jeff Burka's user avatar
7 votes

What is the name of the theory opposite to the Great Man theory?

It's called "History from Below". I justify this by quoting Herbert Spencer: You must admit that the genesis of a great man depends on the long series of complex influences which has produced the ...
Peter Wone's user avatar
6 votes

In a challenge to duel, what happened if a thrown gauntlet (and later, glove) was refused?

This would have varied by region and culture. Medieval Europe Dueling has its roots in trial by combat. Presumably, if you refused such a duel, you were conceding your wrongness in the case, and the ...
SPavel's user avatar
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4 votes

At what point do armies tend to break?

Green units might break, retreat or even desert without any deaths. For example, mass surrender of Germans in the west at the end of WWII, or Iraqi army at the end of the Gulf War. While other units ...
Santiago's user avatar
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4 votes
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How do nations maintain sovereignty over conquered nations?

There may have been 1.7 million people in England, but 50% were women, who were non-combatants, so we're down to 0.8m (arguably; scaly llama exceptions apply) 33% of the remainder were over fighting ...
MCW's user avatar
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4 votes

How do nations maintain sovereignty over conquered nations?

There is a difference between "control" and sovereignty. After the Battle of Hastings it was clear William had the most powerful force, so he became sovereign. When he marched to London there was ...
Tyler Durden's user avatar
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4 votes

How did the Mongol Nomads' System of Raiding and Trading Work?

Yes, there is (was?) such a custom in the Eurasian steppes (i.e. Mongols, focus of the question). I don't know it terribly well because this one is certainly within social anthropology+, not really my ...
J Asia's user avatar
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4 votes

How did the Mongol Nomads' System of Raiding and Trading Work?

I am not an expert on the Mongols, but what you describe seems similar to the Irish Tain Bo Cualinge, or the Norse Viking around the period of the Great Heathen Army (that's not the best reference, ...
MCW's user avatar
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4 votes

Is the Krishna (a god within Hinduism), an appropriated historical figure?

Indian historians It appears to be very much dependant upon who exactly the historians are. Scholars of Hinduism and Indian history would appear to be in favour of a historical Krishna, according to ...
John Strachan's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

Did people during the Renaissance believe that the heart had two chambers?

The "common knowledge" of human anatomy in medical circles during medieval times and the renaissance was severely hampered by prohibitions on dissections and the reliance on medical authorities, from ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
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3 votes

How do we know baroque art depicted obese ladies because of a different ideal of beauty?

This aesthetic relativism is also confused by the fact that for most of the history of Western art, women weren't able to model so the artist often just changed male bodies (from his/her model) into ...
devinr's user avatar
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3 votes

How do nations maintain sovereignty over conquered nations?

A more "normal" ratio of military to population might be something like 1%. That ratio would imply 17,000 men for the Norman conquerers instead of 7,000. There was one other factor in the Normans' ...
Tom Au's user avatar
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