Dominant group/Classes of meaning

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A rare opportunity occurs to observe a galaxy group in the process of evolving from an X-ray faint system dominated by spiral galaxies to a more developed system dominated by elliptical galaxies and bright X-ray emission. Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/CfA/E. O'Sullivan Optical: Canada-France-Hawaii-Telescope/Coelum.

A dominant group in any field may have at least four meanings: (1) a field-based entity, (2) source, (3) object, or (4) a group in some way associated with the field. A dominant group, once identified, can be an entity, source, or object of study.

As the field of dominant group is unknown, mythology is as likely as any other. But, mythologists study the myths and their uses by human groups.

Dominant group[edit | edit source]

Examples from primary sources are to be used to prove or disprove each hypothesis. These can be collected per subject or in general.

  1. Accident hypothesis: dominant group is an accident of whatever processes are operating.
  2. Artifact hypothesis: dominant group may be an artifact of human endeavor or may have preceded humanity.
  3. Association hypothesis: dominant group is associated in some way with the original research.
  4. Bad group hypothesis: dominant group is the group that engages in discrimination, abuse, punishment, and additional criminal activity against other groups. It often has an unfair advantage and uses it to express monopolistic practices.
  5. Control group hypothesis: there is a control group that can be used to study dominant group.
  6. Entity hypothesis: dominant group is an entity within each field where a primary author of original research uses the term.
  7. Evolution hypothesis: dominant group is a product of evolutionary processes, such groups are the evolutionary process, produce evolutionary processes, or are independent of evolutionary processes.
  8. Identifier hypothesis: dominant group is an identifier used by primary source authors of original research to identify an observation in the process of analysis.
  9. Importance hypothesis: dominant group signifies original research results that usually need to be explained by theory and interpretation of experiments.
  10. Indicator hypothesis: dominant group may be an indicator of something as yet not understood by the primary author of original research.
  11. Influence hypothesis: dominant group is included in a primary source article containing original research to indicate influence or an influential phenomenon.
  12. Interest hypothesis: dominant group is a theoretical entity used by scholarly authors of primary sources for phenomena of interest.
  13. Metadefinition hypothesis: all uses of dominant group by all primary source authors of original research are included in the metadefinition for dominant group.
  14. Null hypothesis: there is no significant or special meaning of dominant group in any sentence or figure caption in any refereed journal article.
  15. Object hypothesis: dominant group is an object within each field where a primary author of original research uses the term.
  16. Obvious hypothesis: the only meaning of dominant group is the one found in Mosby's Medical Dictionary.
  17. Original research hypothesis: dominant group is included in a primary source article by the author to indicate that the article contains original research.
  18. Primordial hypothesis: dominant group is a primordial concept inherent to humans such that every language or other form of communication no matter how old or whether extinct, on the verge of extinction, or not, has at least a synonym for dominant group.
  19. Purpose hypothesis: dominant group is written into articles by authors for a purpose.
  20. Regional hypothesis: dominant group, when it occurs, is only a manifestation of the limitations within a region. Variation of those limitations may result in the loss of a dominant group with the eventual appearance of a new one or none at all.
  21. Source hypothesis: dominant group is a source within each field where a primary author of original research uses the term.
  22. Term hypothesis: dominant group is a significant term that may require a 'rigorous definition' or application and verification of an empirical definition.

Entities[edit | edit source]

"For instance, resources made available by a dominant group, such as the National Science Foundation, can be viewed both as “powers over” possible research agendas of others, and also as “powers with” others in assisting researchers pursuing certain kinds of projects."[1]

Sources[edit | edit source]

"The dominant group's definition of its permeability is the controlling variable that determines the nature of the social field."[2]

Objects[edit | edit source]

"[O]nly dominant group members who derive a sense of belonging and social value from their membership in the dominant ingroup should be motivated by group-based identity concerns to show signs of defensiveness in response to external explanations."[3]

Identifiers[edit | edit source]

The term may serve as a theoretical identifier designated by the author, based on observations of phenomena.

"Groups, according to their range, may be denominated either predominant, dominant, sub-dominant, or quiescent."[4]

Associated groups[edit | edit source]

"Especially Bacillus species are commonly isolated from mural paintings [2,4,6] and also in this study, they are the dominant group."[5]

“[A]esthetic preference plays a part in cultural supremacy and that sometimes the taste of the dominant group is an aggressive assertion of mastery."[6]

"According to Livy, the first 100 men appointed as senators by Romulus were referred to as "fathers" (patres),[7] and the descendants of those men became the Patrician class.[8] The patricians were distinct from the plebeians because they had wider political influence, at least in the times of the Republic."[9]

Def. "[o]riginally, a member of any of the families constituting the populus Romanus, or body of Roman citizens, before the development of the plebeian order; later, one who, by right of birth or by special privilege conferred, belonged to the senior class of Romans, who, with certain property, had by right a seat in the Roman Senate"[10] is called a patrician.

"In the beginning of the Republic, all priesthoods were closed to non-patricians. There was a belief that patricians communicated better with the Roman gods, so they alone could perform the sacred rites and take the auspices."[9]

"Until the year 445 B.C. [2445 b2k] a regular marriage (iustae nuptiae) could be contracted only between patricians - members of the ruling class."[11] Bold added.

Def. in Roman mythology, "[t]he legendary founder of Rome and the twin brother of Remus"[12] is called Romulus.

"Ioannes the Lydian, writing in the sixth century on the usage of his native town, says: 'Our own Philadelpheia still preserves a trace of the ancient belief. On the first day of the month (sc. January) there goes in procession no less a personage than Ianus himself, dressed up in a two-faced mask, and people call him Saturnus, identifying him with Kronos2.'"[13]

"The twins [Romulus and Remus], as in the case of Janus, attach themselves to the Universal Monarch as his two faces, looking in opposite directions."[14]

Romulus may not have been a human, but perhaps something in the sky used by a group of humans to make themselves into a ruling class.

Majorities[edit | edit source]

A dominant group "need not be a numerical majority (although it often will be)."[15]

Artifacts[edit | edit source]

These artifacts: potsherds and granite slabs were unearthed at the site of the Subrahmanya Temple, Saluvankuppam. Credit: Ravichandar84.

Def. "[a]n object, such as a tool, weapon or ornament, ... structure or finding in an experiment or investigation ... made or shaped by some agent or intelligence, ... [as] a result of external action, the test arrangement, or an experimental error ... rather than an inherent element"[16] is called an artifact, or artefact.

Are dominant group and some or all of its relative synonyms artifacts? Dominant group may be only an artifact.

Fossils[edit | edit source]

A fossil. Credit: Halvard : from Norway.

Def. "[t]he mineralized remains of an animal or plant" or "[a]ny preserved evidence of ancient life, including shells, imprints, burrows, coprolites, and organically-produced chemicals"[17] is called a fossil.

Any dominant group seems an unlikely candidate to be a fossil.

Then, we have "When dominance of particular ecological niches passes from one group of organisms to another, it is rarely because the new dominant group is "superior" to the old and usually because an extinction event eliminates the old dominant group and makes way for the new one.[18][19]"[20]

Regions[edit | edit source]

Def. "[a]ny considerable and connected part of a space or surface; specifically, a tract of land or sea of considerable but indefinite extent; a country; a district; in a broad sense, a place without special reference to location or extent but viewed as an entity for geographical, social or cultural reasons"[21] is called a region.

In Kirby's An Introduction to Entomology[4] from 1826, a dominant group of species is determined by a regional distribution. "Groups, according to their range, may be denominated either predominant, dominant, sub-dominant, or quiescent."[4] Later, this regional distribution became relative and the term entered the field of evolution.

“The dominant species of the larger dominant groups tend to leave many modified descendants, and thus new sub-groups and groups are formed.”[22]

"We have seen that it is the common, the widely-diffused, and the widely-ranged species, belonging to the larger genera, which vary most; and these will tend to transmit to their modified offspring that superiority which now makes them dominant in their own countries."[22]

Darwin's use of the term "dominant groups" in reference to "their own countries"[22] suggests that "dominant group" is a term in the science of regions.

The question becomes, "Which came first the "dominant group" or the region?" It may be possible that some groups as they increase in numbers alter their local region in such a way that it increases their numbers and produces their dominance.

As has been demonstrated in small group studies, each use of "dominant group" is accompanied in context by the region of this group. The limits which separate the group from the population, or those that determine the region or country within which the dominant group is possible may be correlated with the criteria of dominance. Changing the limits which define the region should change the dominant group or eliminate dominant groups except as an artifact of examination.

A group that wishes to become or remain as a dominant group may change the limits of a region so as to create or maintain itself as dominant. Naturally occurring apparent dominant groups may be only an artifact of the choice of regions.

Indicators[edit | edit source]

The term may serve as a theoretical indicator.

"But once this dominant group has been deposed, other [art] producers take their place and can assert their hegemony, drawing authority away from consumers by a process of de-commodification."[23]

Analogy[edit | edit source]

Dominant group is like "differential equations". Although "differential equations" is a subject within mathematics, its spread to other fields such as physics with ensuing use, advanced knowledge within those fields.

Terminology[edit | edit source]

Dominant group may be a subject-independent entity (a two-word scientific or technical term, or a two-word cultural or humanities term), or simply a two-word term.

Evolutionary processes[edit | edit source]

Perhaps it is an evolutionary process. In materials science, is the term dominant group an artifact, an evolutionary process, or only an entity?

With respect to dominant groups, evolutionary processes

  1. produce dominant groups,
  2. are the same as dominant groups (dominant groups are an evolutionary process),
  3. are produced by dominant groups, or
  4. are independent of dominant groups (i.e., dominant groups are an artifact or accident).

Dominant group may be a force for extinction.

On page 212 of a 1944 book by Simpson is "[i]n the history of life it is a striking fact that major changes in the taxonomic groups occupying various ecological positions do not, as a rule, result from direct competition of the groups concerned in each case and the survival of the fittest, as most students would assume a priori. On the contrary, the usual sequence is for one dominant group to die out, leaving the zone empty, before the other group becomes abundant."[24] "Simpson noted that major extinctions provide opportunities (space, ecological niches, etc.) for later diversification by the survivors."[25]

Accidents[edit | edit source]

Any dominant group may be only an accident.

"There is no evidence that the superiority of any existing dominant group is based on any thing but an accident, and any attempt to maintain that dominance by reason, is merely the rationalization of a "myth.""[26]


  1. "[a]n unexpected event with negative consequences occurring without the intention of the one suffering the consequences"
  2. "[a]ny chance event"
  3. "[a]n unintended event such as a collision that causes damage or death"
  4. "[a] property attached to a word [or term], but not essential to it, as gender, number, case"
  5. "[a]n irregular surface feature with no apparent cause"
  6. "casus; such unforeseen, extraordinary, extraneous interference as is out of the range of ordinary calculation"
  7. "[a]n unplanned event that results in injury (including death) or occupational illness to person(s) and/or damage to property, exclusive of injury and/or damage caused by action of an enemy or hostile force"[27] is called an accident.

"Instead of a competitive situation, these societies disclose a monopolistic control of the principal resources by the dominant group, and, as in the case of the United States, it is this group that allocates positions in the society as a whole."[28]

"In all these societies, historical accident (conquest, colonization, forced or free migration) made for important and commonly recognized differences in anthropological culture."[28]

Dominances[edit | edit source]

Defining the dominant group with respect to an evolution of the criteria of dominance, for example, "[t]races the evolution of the dominant group in Canada since 1931 by examining criteria for dominance that have evolved over time."[29] "[T]he category of "dominant group" has unclear limits and varies from one geographical region to another."[29]

"When dominance of particular ecological niches passes from one group of organisms to another, it is rarely because the new dominant group is "superior" to the old and usually because an extinction event eliminates the old dominant group and makes way for the new one.[18][19]"[20]

Ecological dominance is the degree to which a species is more numerous than its competitors in an ecological community, or makes up more of the biomass.

"In many paleontological studies, taxonomic diversity" carries with it "[t]he implicit assumption ... that more species in a lineage indicate greater biomass in the lineage as well."[30] "Although this generalization may apply in animals, there are strong reasons to think that among plants there is no strong correlation between biomass dominance and species diversity".[30]

Perhaps, dominant group is independent of a criteria of dominance and serves instead as an indicator of change based on influence. At one point in time, a dominant group A may be observed or identified, at a later time there may be no identifiable dominant group, then even later dominant group B is identifiable.

Hypotheses[edit | edit source]

  1. Using enough scholarly literature sources it should be possible to demonstrate the falseness or applicability of each dominant group hypothesis.

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Suzanne M. Spencer-Wood (2010). S. Baugher, S. M. Spencer-Wood. ed. Commentary: A Feminist Framework for Analyzing Complex Gendered Power Dynamics Altering Cultural Landscapes from the Past into the Present, In: Archaeology and Preservation of Gendered Landscapes. New York: Springer. pp. 343-60. doi:10.1007/978-1-4419-1501-6_15. Retrieved 2012-03-07. 
  2. R. A. Schermerhorn (3rd Quarter 1964). "Toward a general theory of minority groups". Phylon 25 (3): 238-46. 
  3. Michael R. Andreychik and Michael J. Gill (December 2009). "Ingroup Identity Moderates the Impact of Social Explanations on Intergroup Attitudes: External Explanations Are Not Inherently Prosocial". Personality and Social Psychology Bulleitin 35 (12): 1632-45. doi:10.1177/0146167209345285. Retrieved 2011-07-22. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 William Kirby, William Spence (1826). An Introduction to Entomology: or Elements of the Natural History of Insects, Volume IV. London: Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown, and Green, Paternoster Row. pp. 474–492. Retrieved 2011-11-30.
  5. J Heyrman, J Mergaert, R Denys, J Swings (December 1999). "The use of fatty acid methyl ester analysis (FAME) for the identification of heterotrophic bacteria present on three mural paintings showing severe damage by microorganisms". FEMS Microbiology Letters 181 (1): 55-62. doi:10.1111/j.1574-6968.1999.tb08826.x. Retrieved 2012-02-24. 
  6. F. Graeme Chalmers (October 1984). "Artistic perception: The cultural context". Journal of Art & Design Education 3 (3): 279-89. doi:10.1111/j.1476-8070.1984.tb00125.x. Retrieved 2011-10-15. 
  7. Kenny Zeng, 2007, A History Of Ancient and Early Rome
  8. Livy, Ab urbe condita, 1:8
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Patrician (ancient Rome), In: Wikipedia". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. February 21, 2013. Retrieved 2013-03-01.
  10. "patrician, In: Wiktionary". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. February 23, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  11. Otto Kiefer (1952). Sexual Life in ancient Rome. Taylor & Francis. p. 379. Retrieved 2013-03-01.
  12. "Romulus, In: Wiktionary". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. January 14, 2013. Retrieved 2013-03-03.
  13. Arthur Bernard Cook (1925). Zeus: A Study in Ancient Religion, Volume 2: Zeus God of the Dark Sky (Thunder and Lightning), Part 1. New York, New York USA: Cambridge University Press. p. 1397. Retrieved 2013-03-03.
  14. David N. Talbott (1980). The Saturn Myth. Garden City, New York, USA: Knopf Doubleday & Company, Inc. p. 419. ISBN 0-385-11376-5. Retrieved 2013-01-03.
  15. Eric D. Knowles, Kaiping Peng (August 2005). "White selves: conceptualizing and measuring a dominant-group identity". Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 89 (2): 223-41. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.89.2.223. 
  16. "artifact, In: Wiktionary". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. March 2, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  17. "fossil, In: Wiktionary". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. April 1, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  18. 18.0 18.1 M.J. Benton (2004). "6. Reptiles Of The Triassic". Vertebrate Palaeontology. Blackwell. ISBN 0045660026.
  19. 19.0 19.1 B. Van Valkenburgh (1999). "Major patterns in the history of carnivorous mammals". Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences 26: 463–493. doi:10.1146/ 
  20. 20.0 20.1 "Extinction event, In: Wikipedia". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. May 17, 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-04.
  21. "region, In: Wiktionary". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. May 20, 2012. Retrieved 2012-05-26.
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 Charles Robert Darwin (1859). On the origin of the species by means of natural selection: or, The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. London: John Murray. p. 516.
  23. Russell Keat, Nigel Whiteley, Nicholas Abercrombie (1994). Russell Keat, Nicholas Abercrombie and Nigel Whiteley (ed.). Preface, In: The Authority of the consumer. New York: Routledge. pp. 1–22. ISBN 0-415-08918-2. Retrieved 2011-09-01.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  24. George Gaylord Simpson (1944). Tempo and Mode in Evolution. New York: Columbia University Press. p. 237.
  25. David M. Raup (July 1994). "The role of extinction in evolution". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 91 (15): 6758-63. Retrieved 2011-09-14. 
  26. Herbert Adolphus Miller (1924). Races, nations and classes: the psychology of domination and freedom. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott. p. 196. Retrieved 2012-02-15.
  27. "accident, In: Wiktionary". San Francisco, California: Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. April 25, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  28. 28.0 28.1 Harmannus Hoetink (1975). Leo A. Despres (ed.). Resource Competition, Monopoly, and Socioracial Diversity, In: Ethnicity and Resource Competition in Plural Societies. The Hague: Mouton Publishers. pp. 9–26. ISBN 90-279-7539-6. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  29. 29.0 29.1 David Millet (1981). "Defining the "Dominant Group"". Canadian Ethnic Studies 13 (3): 369-75. 
  30. 30.0 30.1 Scott L. Wing and Lisa D. Boucher (May 1998). "Ecological Aspects of the Cretaceous Flowering Plant Radiation". Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences 26 (1): 379-421. doi:10.1146/ Retrieved 2011-09-14. 

External links[edit | edit source]

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