This page uses content from Wikipedia and is licensed under CC BY-SA.

Wikipedia:Reference desk/Humanities

The Wikipedia Reference Desk covering the topic of humanities.

Welcome to the humanities reference desk.
Want a faster answer?

Main page: Help searching Wikipedia

How can I get my question answered?

  • Provide a short header that gives the general topic of the question.
  • Type '~~~~' (that is, four tilde characters) at the end – this signs and dates your contribution so we know who wrote what and when.
  • Post your question to only one desk.
  • Don't post personal contact information – it will be removed. All answers will be provided here.
  • Specific questions, that are likely to produce reliable sources, will tend to get clearer answers.
  • Note:
    • We don't answer (and may remove) questions that require medical diagnosis or legal advice.
    • We don't answer requests for opinions, predictions or debate.
    • We don't do your homework for you, though we'll help you past the stuck point.
    • We don't conduct original research or provide a free source of ideas, but we'll help you find information you need.

How do I answer a question?

Main page: Wikipedia:Reference desk/Guidelines

  • The best answers address the question directly, and back up facts with wikilinks and links to sources. Do not edit others' comments and do not give any medical or legal advice.
Choose a topic:
See also:
Help desk
Village pump
Help manual

October 12

EU competences

Hello, in Template:EU competences, four quotations purportedly taken from Title I of Part I of the consolidated Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union can be found. However, when checking the given source, I could not identify any of the four quotes there. So, where exactly are they taken from, then?--Neufund (talk) 14:09, 12 October 2018 (UTC)

October 13

How are the Romanian Revolution’s casualties divided?

This page says that a total of 689–1,290 people died in the revolution, but does not specify the victims’ factions (except for the Ceaușescus). How many of those killed in the revolution were securists, socialist officials, &c.? — (((Romanophile))) (contributions) 09:37, 13 October 2018 (UTC)

The Romanian Revolution of December 1989 (pp. 280-281 by Peter Siani-Davies.

A vintage bleve

My search skills aren't up to finding a ref desk correspondence from years ago; someone was talking about an olden-days BLEVE, in a glassworks, I believe; something about a glass ball filled with water, which rolled into a fire, and which subsequently exploded catastrophically, despite workers' efforts to prise it free. Can anyone help, please?

You can try looking at the "What links here?" for BLEVE - I can see several links over the years. Mikenorton (talk) 12:19, 13 October 2018 (UTC)
You can narrow down the list by selecting the filter to only show items in the Wikipedia namespace, though it won't automatically include redirected items. For example, checking such links from Boiling liquid expanding vapor explosion only nets you a single link, whereas checking for what links to BLEVE nets you these seven more. Matt Deres (talk) 18:25, 15 October 2018 (UTC)

thanks, both! 02:37, 16 October 2018 (UTC)

October 14

Proper names

How can proper names be rigid designators (each designating the same thing in all possible worlds in which that thing exists) when even two different individuals can have exactly the same name? VarunSoon (talk) 03:42, 14 October 2018 (UTC)

I tried reading the article on rigid designators but it made my head hurt real bad. To the extent I understand it, the key may like in the statement that "rigid designation is a property of the way terms are used, not a property of the terms themselves." Shock Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 04:14, 14 October 2018 (UTC)
I think the distinction is between "John Smith" and "man"; where "John Smith" is used (by the speaker) to designate a specific man, and only a specific man, where as the term "man" is general and could refer to any number of men, without specificity. But I also do admit that after reading that article, it is obtuse and arcane, and I as well had a hard time extracting meaning from it. --Jayron32 11:51, 16 October 2018 (UTC)
I didn't even really try, but one thing which jumps out to me is I don't quite understand the "Proper names and definite descriptions" bit. It seems to suggest "first Chancellor of the German Empire" is not a rigid designator because the person who is the first Chancellor of the German Empire could have died in infancy. But even assuming for some reason we set birth as a cut off, not everyone is given a name at birth. Sometimes it may be days, weeks or even months. And precisely how that name comes about will vary. You can obviously easily find examples where if something different had happened, the person would have a different name. Also, if Bismarck had died in infancy, he wouldn't have been a ruthless politician. The Johnny Depp things seems even more confusing. It seems his parents called him John Christopher Depp II. I don't know whether they ever called him Johnny or it was something he later adopted. It seems to me it could have been either. And someone's parents could have called him Johnny but they hated that name and asked others to call them Christopher. And again, different chains of events could have affected whether this happened. To say nothing of those who completely abandon the names given to them by their parents for whatever reason. One example would include if a child was somehow lost or kidnapped or whatever and didn't even know the name given to them by their parents, and again different chains of events would affect whether this happens, and for that matter what their new names are. Maybe it has something to do with the fact there could have been a different first chancellor of Germany (although there also could have been none), but if this was a different person, they may not have been ruthless so I don't understand the point. And of course if Johnny Depp was switched at birth, he would also be a different person. (If someone is switched at birth, by the time they are say 5 years old, I suspect that everyone would agree the boy who has spent his life being Johnny Depp is Johnny Depp. The other child is whatever name his parents gave him. Yet under different circumstances, the other child would be Johnny Depp.) The only thing I can think of is there could be a dispute over who the first chancellor of Germany is even if everything is the same, but the article doesn't seem to say anything like that and I don't get the relevance of the first chancellor dying in infancy then. Nil Einne (talk) 14:15, 17 October 2018 (UTC)
Leave it to professional philosophers to worry about something that isn't a problem. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 14:24, 17 October 2018 (UTC)

General Chiapati? Italy, Second World War

Our articles Daniel Knox, 6th Earl of Ranfurly, Guy Ruggles-Brise, and Vincigliata mention an Italian General Chiapati. I can find no mention of him on Google except for our articles, and obvious mirrors/copies of Wikipedia. Do we have his name right, and is there any more information about him? Thank you, DuncanHill (talk) 16:35, 14 October 2018 (UTC)

Pinging User:Long Ben Every as the originator of all three references. Rojomoke (talk) 22:50, 14 October 2018 (UTC)

Good morning, request for more information on General Chiappe. General di Armata Chiappe is described as Corps Commander and Commander Florence Corp, 'a good soldier and great gentleman' Source: CARTON DE WIART, Sir Adrian, 'Happy Odyssey' Pen & Sword, 2007 ISBN 978-1-84415-539-2 pages 199, 205, 222 Aslo confirmed by Neame, Lt. Gen Sir Philip, 'Playing with Strife' George G Harrap, London 1947 pages 308, 314 Hope this adds a little to your research. Regards Long Ben Every (talk) 10:12, 15 October 2018 (UTC)

So is Chiapati a typo for Chiappe, or a different person? DuncanHill (talk) 10:14, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
Looks like someone was eating or dreaming of chapatis while editing. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 19:48, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
Yes, the only other uses I can find for chiapati are as a variant or foreign spelling of chapati. User:Long Ben Every is Chiapati in the aforementioned articles a typo for Chiappe? DuncanHill (talk) 00:40, 16 October 2018 (UTC)

The spelling of his name (Chiappe) is taken from both book sources. The name you had originally was probably a typo -easy enough mistake. regards Long Ben Every (talk) 05:59, 18 October 2018 (UTC)

Thanks, I've corrected your typo in those articles. DuncanHill (talk) 07:03, 18 October 2018 (UTC)
A search for "generale Chiappe" (without quotation marks) gives as first hit a figure of speech, proprio dietro le chiappe del generale, which means "right behind the butt cheeks of the general". That made me kind of suspicious, but a search with the double quotes does seem to find a general, though it's curious that it's not easy to find details. I still wonder a bit if there might have been a joke that got taken seriously, somewhere, and it slipped into the sources.
See for example this page on "the young and fascism", where if you search in the page for "chiappe" you'll find a letter from a Resistance fighter to his parents, where he refers to "lieutenant general Chiappe", with the annotation "in the epistolary style, even moderately trivial terms are allowed". --Trovatore (talk) 08:14, 18 October 2018 (UTC)

On the other hand, there are a handful of bios on of persons with this surname. Most of them seem to be French or Spanish versions of the name, so pronounced differently, but there's Giovanni Battista Chiappe, who also makes it into I can't find any mention of the good general.
I am still a bit suspicious but there's nothing concrete to go on. Maybe I'll ask a question at the Oracolo and see if anyone's heard of him there. --Trovatore (talk) 16:38, 18 October 2018 (UTC)
No, he's kosher. General Chiappe was District Commander in Florence when Italy capitulated. --Antiquary (talk) 17:56, 18 October 2018 (UTC)
So for example, what was his first name? I'm far from a military historian; is it normal to have so much trouble finding out minimal details about a figure that important? --Trovatore (talk) 18:03, 18 October 2018 (UTC)
this document mentions General Chiappe as "chief of staff" in December, 1943, in the RSI province of Vercelli. The index gives him as Umberto, but that doesn't seem to be a helpful search clue, because Umberto Chiappe is a men's clothing store and that swamps the search results. --Trovatore (talk) 18:26, 18 October 2018 (UTC)

October 18