15 Matching Annotations
  1. Dec 2020
    1. Police deemed the death suspicious, but did not label it a homicide despite the fact that someone had buried the body.

      An easy way to keep severe crime off of their books perhaps? Should police be the ones doing this sort of classification or should it go to an independent body unaffiliated with local law enforcement?

      Would it have been classified the same if it was a more identifiable affluent white woman? (Likely not...)

  2. Oct 2020
      1. This article is about the ballad known as the Twa Sisters and enumerates the differences and similarities between the English, Scottish, and American variants. At the bottom of the article I will include some Scottish variants of the ballad and some American or English variants if anyone was interested in giving them a listen.

      Traits of the song that are present in the Scottish tradition and not in the English tradition:

      sisters living in a bower among the gifts to the elder sister being a ring and knife the eldest sister standing on a stone before throwing the younger in drowned sister’s hair being referred to as yellow a miller’s son or daughter finding the drowned daughter the rhyme of swan with dam (herein the woman is compared to a swan and is said to be found in the miller’s dam) musician taking three locks of the drowned sister’s hair to string their instrument English variants of the ballad are so few that it is perhaps easier to identify them through the lack of elements of the Scottish variant than by any presence of any particular element. Other characteristics of the English tradition:

      the introduction of the ballad, specifically saying that the king had “daughters one, two three” the gift of a beaver hat the rhyme of swan and woman reference to the miller being hanged for the drowning of the younger sister The American tradition never contains the details in the Scottish tradition though many similarities between it and the English tradition can be found. Among (but not limited to) them are:

      introductory stanza beaver hat as a gift failure to specify the hair as yellow also neglects the story of the body of the girl being turned into an instrument

      1. I think that this article is a good look at what kinds of tropes and elements are commonly occurring in different versions of the folk ballad, though I would have liked to see more about how to differentiate the American from the English variants of the ballad.

      2. "In finding traits characteristic of English tradition we are confronted with serious difficulties. The English ballads are few in number, so few indeed that the absence of the Scottish traits is perhaps a more reliable mark than any other."

    1. This article discusses the main kinds of refrains in British ballads.This is directly related to the topic of murder ballads as murder ballads all typically have different kinds of refrains.

      The first kind pertains to an occupation, the second sounds or vocables, the third is a seasonal refrain, and the fourth is a refrain which is directly connected to the ballad that it’s attached to.

      “In the riddle ballad, the elfin or demon suitor attempts to conquer the lady by posing her with questions, failing to answer which she will fall into his' clutches. And as Miss Broadwood has suggested, the herbs named in the refrain are evidently considered of magical virtue in protecting their wearer or invoker against evil.”

    1. Murder in murder ballads cannot be concealed for long and through the course of the ballad, there is always something that reveals the murder. In many folk ballads this is something that happens naturally but in a few this is revealed through supernatural means. This motif is called “murder will out”.

      The specific folk ballads outlined in this paper that have an element of supernatural that is instrumental in revealing the murder are the Twa Sisters (Child 10), Sir Hugh (Child 155), Young Hunting (Child 68), and Young Benjie (Child 86).

      “In the Scottish "Binorie" versions, for instance, the body is recovered from the water and buried without any further allusion to the murder. In North American versions, the younger sister's body is eventually found, but frequently not before she has already been fished out, still alive, by a miller who has seen her floating in his milldam, robbed her of her money or jewelry, and then thrown her back in to drown.”

  3. Sep 2020
    1. He feels the song began in Norway before 1600, spread through Scandinavia, and then to Britain and the West. However, he thinks the tale is of Slavic origin. This thesis (see also his article The Geographical Distribution of "The Twa Sisters" in Annuario de la Sociedad Folklorica de Mexico, 1944, 49-54), along with Harbison Parker's "The Twa Sisters"—Going Which Way? in JAF, 1951, 347-360), re-evaluates Knut Leist0l's belief that the ballad was first composed in Britain, split into two versions, both of which came to Scandinavia, one to Norway and one to Denmark. Parker believes the ballad to have originated in Western Scandinavia, and the British versions to stem from Faroe or Norwegian texts. See also Lutz MacKenson's study in FFC, #49 (1923) and Child, I, 124-125. Archer Taylor (JAF, 1929, 238f.) discusses the American, English, and Scottish versions of the ballad. He concludes that the American texts follow the English tradition (see p. 243 ) exclusively. The beaver hat, the failure to call the hair yellow, and the introductory stanza are all English traits. For the Scottish traits (not common to America) see pp. 238—40.

      possible geographic origin of twa sisters ballad from Tristam P Coffin's "The British Traditional Ballad in North America."

    1. Number 10 of the #ChildBallads is "The Twa Sisters", a Northumbrian murder ballad first known to have appeared on a broadside in 1656 as "The Miller and the King's Daughter." At least 21 English variants exist under several names.

      twa sisters twitter thread

  4. Aug 2020
    1. When a former psychiatric patient killed two people on the streets of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and then sued the psychiatrist who had treated him for failing to prevent the murders, the mental health world dismissed the suit as frivolous. But when a jury agreed with the killer and awarded him $500,000 in damages, bewilderment was the order of the day (1). Can it be true, psychiatrists asked, that murder pays—as long as you can blame your psychiatrist for your deed?

      This is the case where it was initially ruled that the psychiatrist was the proximate cause for the patient, Williamson, to commit murder. Subsequent higher courts overturned this decision.

  5. Dec 2019
    1. I shall kill no albatross,

      This expression is a reference to Samuel Taylor Coleridge's poem "Rime of the Ancient Mariner," in which the Mariner inexplicably slays an albatross. The allusion may imply that Walton will play the role of Coleridge's Wedding Guest instead: he will listen to Victor's long, obsessive story that will ultimately be a confession of guilt, like the Ancient Mariner' tale. Since the poem was not published until September 1798, this reference also places the "17--" date of these letters as the summer of 1799. On the poem's role in the novel, see Beth Lau, "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Frankenstein," in Samuel Taylor Coleridge and the Sciences of Life, ed. Nicholas Roe (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001): 207-23.

  6. May 2019
    1. in May 2014, a small group of young Taliban gunmen stormed a Kabul hotel and executed nine people in the restaurant

      This is the incident, at Wikipedia.

  7. Jan 2018
  8. Jun 2017
    1. We all stand up against the spirit of Caesar; And in the spirit of men there is no blood: O, that we then could come by Caesar’s spirit, And not dismember Caesar! But, alas, Caesar must bleed for it! And, gentle friends, Let’s kill him boldly, but not wrathfully; Let’s carve him as a dish fit for the gods, Not hew him as a carcass fit for hounds;

      In this scene, Brutus is introduced to his fellow conspirators for the first time. Cassius suggests in this scene for the conspirators to all swear oath to kill Caesar, but Brutus rejects it, convinced that their murder of Caesar was honourable and just, and that an oath would lessen their standing and decorum. In truth, Brutus was the only conspirator who acted for the greater good of the Roman Republic, yet in his naivety, believed that all the conspirators did so to “stand up against the spirit of Caesar”.

      Brutus maintained that since they were doing the right thing, that meant that “there was no blood” on the conspirators’ hands. This raises a question that Shakespeare clearly intended for the audience to consider; One that was relevant during the Roman times, one that was relevant during the Elizabethan era, and one that is still relevant today:

      Is it ever okay to pre-emptively murder someone?

      This question has had many forms and variations throughout the eras, with the most well known being: Would you go back in time to kill Hitler?

      Would it ever be appropriate to murder someone? In this case, Caesar had the potential to be dictator, but was that enough for the conspirators to murder him? Under what circumstances would pre-emptive murder be okay, if ever?

  9. Mar 2014
    1. Coes, when the Mytilenaeans received him, was taken out and stoned

      Hdt. 5.38 The Mytilenaeans - instigated by Aristagoras - seize and stone Coes/Koes (a representative of the Achaemenid Empire).