SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Kava

Kava or kava kava is a crop of the Pacific Islands. The name kava is from Tongan and Marquesan, meaning'bitter'. Kava is consumed for its sedating effects throughout the Pacific Ocean cultures of Polynesia, including Hawaii, Vanuatu and some parts of Micronesia. To a lesser extent, it is consumed in nations; the root of the plant is used to produce a drink with sedative and euphoriant properties. Its active ingredients are called kavalactones. A systematic review done by the British nonprofit Cochrane concluded it was to be more effective than placebo at treating short-term anxiety. Moderate consumption of kava in its traditional form, i.e. as a water-based suspension of kava roots, has been deemed as presenting an "acceptably low level of health risk" by the World Health Organization. However, consumption of kava extracts produced with organic solvents, or excessive amounts of poor quality kava products, may be linked to an increased risk of adverse health outcomes, including potential liver injury.

In Australia the import and possession of kava is regulated due to particular social health concerns. Kava is believed to have been domesticated in either Vanuatu by seafarers, it is believed to be a domesticated variety of Piper subbullatum, native to New Guinea and the Philippines. It was spread by the Austronesian Lapita culture after contact eastward into the rest of Polynesia, it is not found in other Austronesian groups. Kava reached Hawaii. Consumption of kava is believed to be the reason why betel chewing, ubiquitous elsewhere, was lost for Austronesians in Oceania. According to Lynch, the reconstructed Proto-Polynesian term for the plant, *kava, was derived from the Proto-Oceanic term *kawaRi in the sense of a "bitter root" or "potent root ", it referred to Zingiber zerumbet, used to make a similar mildly psychoactive bitter drink in Austronesian rituals. Cognates for *kava include Pohnpeian sa-kau. In some languages, most notably Māori kawa, the cognates have come to mean "bitter", "sour", or "acrid" to the taste.

In the Cook Islands, the reduplicated forms of kawakawa or kavakava are applied to the unrelated members of the genus Pittosporum. And in other languages like in Futunan, compound terms like kavakava atua refer to other species belonging to the genus Piper; the reduplication of the base form is indicative of falsehood or likeness, in the sense of "false kava". In Aotearoa, it was applied to the kawakawa, endemic to Aotearoa and nearby Norfolk Island, Lord Howe Island, the Rangitāhua Islands, it was exploited by the Māori based on previous knowledge of the kava, as the latter could not survive in the colder climates of Aotearoa. The Māori name for the plant, reduplicated, it is a sacred tree among the Māori people. It is seen as a symbol of death, corresponding to the rangiora, the symbol of life. However, kawakawa has no psychoactive properties, its connection to kava is limited purely on similarity in appearance. Kava was grown only in the Pacific islands of Hawaii, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, the Samoas and Tonga.

An inventory of P. methysticum distribution showed it was cultivated on numerous islands of Micronesia, Melanesia and Hawaii, whereas specimens of P. wichmannii were all from Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu. The kava shrub thrives in well-drained soils where plenty of air reaches the roots, it grows where rainfall is plentiful, attaining over 78 inches per year. Ideal growing conditions are 70–95 °F and 70–100% relative humidity. Too much sunlight is harmful in early growth, because kava is an understory crop. Kava cannot reproduce sexually. Female flowers are rare and do not produce fruit when hand-pollinated, its cultivation is by propagation from stem cuttings. Traditionally, plants are harvested around four years of age, as older plants have higher concentrations of kavalactones. After reaching about 2 metres height, plants grow a wider stalk and additional stalks, but not much taller; the roots can reach a depth of 60 centimetres. Kava consists of sterile cultivars cloned from Piper wichmanii.

Today it comprises hundreds of different cultivars grown across the Pacific. Each cultivar has not only different requirements for successful cultivation, but displays unique characteristics both in terms of its appearance, in terms of its psychoactive properties. Scholars make a distinction between the so-called "noble" and non-noble kava; the latter category comprises medicinal kavas and wild kava. Traditionally, only noble kavas have been used for regular consumption due to their more favourable composition of kavalactones and other compounds that produce more pleasant effects and have lower potential for causing negative side-effects, such as nausea or "kava hangover"; the perceived benefits of noble cultivars explain why only these cultivars were spread around the Pacific by Polynesian and Melanesian migrants, with presence of non-noble cultivars limited to the islands of Vanuatu from which they originated. M

Thomas Earl House (Ann Arbor, Michigan)

The Thomas Earl House was built as a single-family home located at 415 North Main Street in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992; the house has been renovated to office space. Thomas Earl was born in Ireland in 1810, emigrated to Canada in 1829, arrived in the Ann Arbor area in 1833, he purchased 200 acres of land and began farming, married Mary Ann Duncan, the sister of a neighbor, in 1834. In 1849 the Earls moved to Ann Arbor and entered the grocery business, living above the store on Main Street. In 1857 they bought the lot this house now stands on, began building this house in about 1860. Thomas Earl continued to operate his store, live in this house, until his death in 1882. Mary Duncan Earl lived in the house until her own death in 1899, she left the property to the Thomas Catholic Church. In 1900, Fred Schaible bought the house at auction in 1900, in 1910 he renovated the structure; the house was left to Schaible's daughter, who married Harry Schmid.

The Schmids lived in the house until the late 1980s. In 1990, Peter Fink renovated it for office use; the Thomas Early House is a 2-1/2 story brick side-hall plan Greek Revival gable-fronted house with a single story shed-roofed clapboard addition in the rear, a single story flat-roofed aluminum-sided addition behind that. The main section is constructed of well-crafted brick, where the bricks are of an unusually small size, with a light colored mortar dividing them; the facade has distinctive and varied Greek Revival details, with deep cornice returns and an entry with rectangular transom and sidelights. The windows are six-over-six double-hung sash units with shutters; the lintels on the first and second floors are of cut stone, painted white and shaped to match the window and door surrounds. A single story hipped roof wooden front porch constructed in the early 20th century, extends across the front of the house

Klang (Stockhausen)

Klang —Die 24 Stunden des Tages is a cycle of compositions by Karlheinz Stockhausen, on which he worked from 2004 until his death in 2007. It was intended to consist of 24 chamber-music compositions, each representing one hour of the day, with a different colour systematically assigned to every hour; the cycle was unfinished that the last three "hours" are lacking. The 21 completed pieces include solos, trios, a septet, Stockhausen's last electronic composition, Cosmic Pulses; the fourth composition is a theatre piece for a solo percussionist, there are two auxiliary compositions which are not part of the main cycle. The completed works bear the work numbers 81–101. After having spent 27 years composing the opera-cycle Licht, Stockhausen felt he was shifting his focus from the visible world of the eyes—Licht is the German word meaning "light", as of the stars, the sun—to the invisible world of the ears; when planning his new cycle of pieces based on the hours of the day, he considered several possibilities for the title: Day, Nacht und Tag, Chi, or Spiegel.

The name he settled on, means "sound", acoustic vibrations, but for Stockhausen, above all "the INNER EAR, for the divine Klang, the mystic sound of the beyond with the voice of the conscience, in German: die Stimme des Gewissens". Although the solo percussion work Himmels-Tür has a decidedly theatrical character, the cycle otherwise consists of concert works. Three are for unaccompanied solo performer, one is a duo, seven are trios, one a septet, one is a purely electronic composition, the remaining eight compositions are for soloist accompanied by electronic music. With Klang Stockhausen moved away from the formula technique he had used from Mantra until the completion of the opera-cycle Licht in 2004; the pieces are based on a 24-note series that has the same all-interval sequence as the series for Gruppen, from which other formal and parametric properties are derived on a work-by-work basis. Starting from the Fifth Hour, this row is used in inversion, until returning to its original form from the Thirteenth Hour onward.

Stockhausen felt that he was returning to the moment form approach he had used in the late 1950s and 1960s, in works such as Kontakte, Momente and Hymnen. It seems that I am listening again more for moments, rather than formulas with their limbs, transformations. Both methods conjoint lead to good music. A special concentration and freedom must be trained for listening to the soul vibrations. A new device of proliferating "rhythm families" was developed for the first "hour" and is employed in many of the subsequent pieces. In addition, the exploration of multiple simultaneous tempi, pioneered in Zeitmaße and Gruppen, is pursued in Himmelfahrt and the trios of hours 6–12. Stockhausen had no overall plan for the cycle but in the summer of 2006, as he was finishing Cosmic Pulses, he altered his method of work and grouped the component pieces into three subcycles. In doing so, he displaced Cosmic Pulses from its intended position as the Sixth to the Thirteenth Hour. One theory has been advanced that the Fibonacci series may be the reason these two subcycles start on the fifth and thirteenth hours, the second ends on the twenty-first.

Another hypothesis is that Stockhausen meant to close the circle with a third, seven-member, "overnight" subcycle covering hours 22, 23, 24, the already-completed 1–4, which would drive home the fact that midnight is not a natural "beginning" of the daily cycle, but only an arbitrary, human convention. Combined with the "morning" and "afternoon-evening" subcycles, this would divide the 24 hours of Klang into a distributive serial proportion pattern of 7:8:9. On 30 November 2007, Stockhausen wrote to Udo Zimmermann, director of the Ars Viva Festival in Munich, politely declining an invitation to attend a performance on 25 January 2008, because "I have reserved the days—and nights—when your rehearsals and performance take place to work on a new composition." Doubtless the new work was to have been one of the remaining hours from Klang but, five days Stockhausen died, leaving the cycle incomplete. After his death, a search in his sketchbooks failed to discover any plans for the remaining three hours.

The last six component works to be premiered were given in Cologne as part of the collective premiere of the cycle, at the MusikTriennale Köln festival on 8–9 May 2010, by members of musikFabrik and others, in 176 individual concerts. Klang in its entirety was premiered in the US by Analog Arts when the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City opened their Met Breuer building; the cycle was performed in the flagship museum, the Met Breuer, The Cloisters museum on 25 and 26 March 2016. "The 24 Hours of the Day suggest a circle and two half circles of 2 × 12 hours like night and day, 4 × 6 hours like night—morning—afternoon—evening, or 8 × 3 hours like the Horen of the Christian cycle of daily prayers. As had been the case with the Licht cycle, Stockhau