Simon Says and Salter Speaks

Of interest.

First, John Simon posts an “apologia” – emphasis added:

So let me start with the serpentine view of me, most conveniently promulgated on the basis of my satirical remarks about something which the poor actors could not control. But are not performers in shows and movies supposed to be appealing, indeed exemplars of something all of us strive for, or do we go to the theater and cinema to look at unsightliness? Except, of course, where the latter is predicated, or do we want the witches in “Macbeth” played by or acted as gorgeous women?

The old Hollywood dedicated to glamour knew what it was doing all right, even if its notion of beauty wasn’t always of the subtlest kind. This has changed, with populism insisting that it would rather look democratically at a homely Zoe Kazan or Jessica Hecht than romantically at a Laura Osnes, Laura Denanti, or Katrina Lesk. And yes, if we desire sets and costumes—again with meaningful exceptions—to be beautiful, why not the faces and figures of performers? Are they not part of the spectacle? Or do young women aiming for stage or screen careers grow up yearning to be Barbra Streisands? Heaven help us, maybe they do. Still, I would like to think that, however unavowedly, they would rather be a Jane Fonda or a Sharon Stone.

Salter video from 2002 on ethnic kinship. Keep in mind that this was an early permutation of Salter’s thought.   The refined theory of EGI does not require – repeat, not require – “the evolution altruism,” the evolution of ethnic nepotism,” or “group selection.” However, the comments about Hamilton and his 1975 paper though are as relevant today as they were back then.

Genetic clustering is real, but in general genetic boundaries are fuzzy and clinal, not disjunctive. Phenotype as well.  It is when the biological characteristics are merged with genealogical descent from historically defined ethnies, culture, and other aspects of Identity do you achieve a practical disjunctiveness.

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