Courts and commentators do not differentiate between defendants who perpetrate crimes by means of inanimate weapons or trained animals and those who perpetrate crimes by means of other human beings used as innocent agents. I argue that this widely accepted comparability is grossly insensitive to the violation of the human dignity of the person whom the perpetrator has turned into an instrument to an offence. Identifying the innocent agent as a possible second victim of the offence alongside the intended victim raises several issues of both morality and law. First, the question of moral pertinence: do the scenarios that the law recognises as cases of innocent agency involve a violation of the dignity of the innocent agent? Second, the question of criminalisation: is it appropriate to invoke criminal law to protect the dignity of the innocent agent? Third, the question of the protected interest: assuming that both the dignity of the innocent agent and their autonomy are compromised, which of these violations is graver? I argue that there is a strong connection between the doctrine of innocent agency and the violation of the dignity of the innocent agent; that the violation of the innocent agent’s dignity is severe enough to warrant criminalisation and that this is simple enough to enforce; and that the injury to the innocent agent’s dignity is more significant than the injury to their autonomy. The operative proposal of this article is that the law should recognise perpetration by means of innocent agents as an aggravated mode of commission or an aggravating factor in punishment.
Bodily secretions such as urinating, expectorating, defecating and flatulating during distance running often play an integral part in the distance runner's routine, but to a large degree remain undiscussed in public. The aim of this study is to deconstruct this taboo topic by shedding light on the nexus between secretions and their sociocultural meanings and implications in the confines of running groups. Drawing on Douglas's (1970) conceptual framework of the physical and social body-system, the paper provides a novel examination of bodily secretions and their dictated norms and assigned symbolic meanings. The contribution of this paper is to address the lacuna of research that focuses on the runner's (lived) body in times of secretion and the way it is navigated in the process of being in and belonging to a running group. An ethnographic research design of three years was implemented in two running groups, using participant observation and semi-structured interviews. The data presented suggest that while the running social body often restricts the novice runner's corporeal body in times of secretion, veteran runners seem to be looser and more unauthorized in the social system, treating their bodies and their secretions with less restraint and less feeling the need to hide or to be embarrassed by their secretions. Moreover, it is evident that bodily secretions are highly gendered. In this context, in contrast to male runners in the study, female runners are drastically more vigilant regarding the way they might be perceived, both to themselves and to others.
In the last year Israel has been going through its most severe constitutional crisis in its history. The newly elected right-wing government has initiated a judicial overhaul that would limit the authority of the judiciary and grant the executive almost absolute powers. In response, the country has witnessed unprecedented civil protestations and opposition from nearly all segments of civil society, academia and economic sectors. In this article we argue that the judicial overhaul must be analysed as a populist constitutional project. We also explain that compared with other systems, Israeli democracy is especially vulnerable to populism, because of its unique institutional design factors coupled with social factors. Only with understanding these factors can one grasp the risks that the judicial overhaul poses to Israeli democracy.
The protests against the Israeli government's proposed constitutional changes, which started in January 2023, have escalated into overall social upheaval. Protestors, politicians and academics have claimed that the existing ‘social contract’ has been violated, that Israel needs a ‘new contract’, and that such ‘new contract’ should be enacted through a constitution. This article argues that while the calls for the enactment of a constitution are understandable, Israel's current form of control of the West Bank and its commitment to the settlement project hinders the political feasibility of the enactment of a constitution. Those calling for a constitution for Israel perceive it as a solution to the indeterminacy and ambiguity that plague the Israeli constitutional framework. However, Israel's current form of control of the West Bank depends on ambiguity, on the existence of legal grey areas, and on fragmentation of the normative framework. The resolution of these is thus inconsistent with the maintenance of this form of control.
Disagreements can polarize attitudes when they evoke defensiveness from the conversation partners. When a speaker talks, listeners often think about ways to counterargue. This process often fails to depolarize attitudes and might even backfire (i.e., the Boomerang effect). However, what happens in disagreements if one conversation partner genuinely listens to the other’s perspective? We hypothesized that when conversation partners convey high-quality listening—characterized by attention, understanding, and positive intentions—speakers will feel more socially comfortable and connected to them (i.e., positivity resonance) and reflect on their attitudes in a less defensive manner (i.e., have self-insight). We further hypothesized that this process reduces perceived polarization (perceived attitude change, perceived attitude similarity with the listener) and actual polarization (reduced attitude extremity). Four experiments manipulated poor, moderate, and high-quality listening using a video vignette (Study 1) and live interactions (Studies 2-4). The results consistently supported the research hypotheses and a serial mediation model in which listening influences depolarization through positivity resonance and non-defensive self-reflection. Most of the effects of the listening manipulation on perceived and actual depolarization generalized across indicators of attitude strength, specifically, attitude certainty and attitude morality. These findings suggest that high-quality listening can be a valuable tool for bridging attitudinal and ideological divides.
Introduction This research examines the perceived age of Premier League basketball players as they near retirement, focusing on the complex interplay between players, fans, and the media in shaping perceptions of age and retirement. The study highlights the unique pressure on the basketball players to retire due to age-related expectations, rooted in the perception that athleticism is age dependent. Methods The research methodology applied in this study involved conducting semi-structured interviews with a sample of 11 professional Israeli basketball players and two veteran players’ agents. Results Three themes emerged: (1) Feelings of betrayal and ingratitude; (2) A farewell tour toward disengagement from one’s professional career; and (3) The media’s role in shaping beliefs and attitudes. These themes illustrate how the sports environment portrays aging players, shaping fan opinions, both positively and negatively. Significantly, the findings emphasize the challenges that players must confront within an ageist environment. Discussion The study concludes by highlighting the cultural and social construction at work. The “coercion” to retire from professional sports is more pronounced here due to the common belief that sports success is time-bound and age-dependent, necessitating a “young body”. In this reality, the audience does not merely function as a backdrop for athletes’ performances, but has the power, at the collective and the individual level, to affect change on and off the court.
This study explored the emotional and cognitive dimensions associated with technical fouls (TFs) in basketball coaching. Using in-depth interviews with Israeli first-division basketball coaches, we aimed to uncover the emotional and cognitive intricacies involved in TFs. Through rigorous thematic content analysis, we delved into coaches' ability to perceive and manipulate psychological momentum on the court. We revealed that coaches intentionally use TFs as strategic tools. TFs were employed to elicit specific emotional responses and cognitive shifts in players, affecting their emotional states, arousal levels, motivation, and overall team performance. However, coaches approached TFs with caution due to the associated emotional and cognitive risks. They carefully weighed potential benefits against unforeseen consequences in their decision-making. Furthermore, our research highlighted coaches' belief in the immediate positive impact of TFs on referee decisions, underscoring the interplay between emotional influence and strategic advantage. Nevertheless, this advantage was perceived as short-lived, emphasizing that TFs are a two-edged sword with unpredictable outcomes.
The routine of the dental profession exposes dentists not only to medical challenges but also to ethical and legal ones. Compared to other physicians, dentists are more likely to encounter children who are victims of domestic violence. This reality exposes them to legal liability due to the reporting obligations and the risk of misdiagnosing injuries. This paper aims to examine the importance of dentists in diagnosing injuries to children caused by domestic violence and the inherent dangers of failing to make such a diagnosis.
Introduction: The current study presents a thorough investigation of the attitudes and emotions expressed by the spouses and girlfriends of sports fans within the context of their long-term relationships. Its primary objective is to explore the potential ramifications that surface when individuals become deeply invested in a competitive sport, demonstrating intense emotional connections, broad knowledge, unwavering loyalty, and active engagement in fan-related activities. Methods: The research methodology applied in this study involved conducting semi-structured interviews with a sample of twelve spouses and girlfriends of fans. Results: The principal findings elucidate four distinct themes that shed light on the intersection of fandom and romantic relationships. These themes include: "that's what I signed up for"; "fandom as a gendered activity"; "the good, the bad, and the ugly"; and "sports fandom as an addiction." Discussion: The study concludes by highlighting the crucial cultural context at work. The social criticism expressed by the interviewees toward non-traditional gender behaviors displayed by their partners serves as a cautionary message. These criticisms aim to preserve and uphold male dominance in sports, thereby reinforcing the notion of their unquestioned supremacy. Consequently, we argue that, within this context, latent aggressive behavior in men is perceived as a strategy to maintain their monopolistic control over sports domains.
Background: The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is composed of brain microvasculature that provides selective transport of solutes from the systemic circulation into the central nervous system to protect the brain and spinal microenvironment. Damage to the BBB in the acute phase following traumatic brain injury (TBI) is recognized as a major underlying mechanism leading to secondary long-term damage. However, due to the lack of technological ability to detect subtle BBB disruption (BBBd) in the chronic phase, the presence of chronic BBBd is disputable. Thus, the dynamics and course of long-term BBBd post-TBI remains elusive. Methods: 30 C57BL/6 male mice subjected to TBI using our weight drop closed head injury model and 19 naïve controls were scanned by MRI up to 540 days following injury. BBB maps were calculated from delayed contrast extravasation MRI (DCM) with high spatial resolution and high sensitivity to subtle BBBd, enabling depiction and quantification of BBB permeability. At each time point 2-6 animals were sacrificed and their brains were extracted, sectioned, and stained for BBB biomarkers including: blood microvessel coverage by astrocyte using GFAP, AQP4, ZO-1 gaps and IgG leakage. Results: we found that DCM provided depiction of subtle yet significant BBBd up to 1.5 years following TBI, with significantly higher sensitivity than standard contrast-enhanced T1-weighted and T2-weighted MRI (BBBd volumes main effect DCM/T1/T2 p<0.0001 F(2,70)=107.3, time point p<0.0001 F(2,133, 18.66)=23.53). In 33% of the cases, both in the acute and chronic stages, there was no detectable enhancement on standard T1-MRI, nor detectable hyper-intensities on T2-MRI, whereas DCM showed significant BBBd volumes. BBBd values of TBI mice at the chronic stage were fonud significantly higher compered to age matched naïve animals at 30,60 and 540 days. The calculated BBB maps were histologically validated by determining significant correlation between the calculated levels of disruption and a diverse set of histopathological parameters obtained from different brain regions, presenting different components of the BBB. Summary and discussion: Cumulative evidence from recent years points to BBBd as a central component of the pathophysiology of TBI. Therefore, it is expected that routine use of highly sensitive non-invasive techniques to measure BBBd, such as DCM with advanced analysis methods, may enhance our understanding of the changes in BBB function following TBI. Application of the DCM technology to other CNS disorders, as well as to normal aging, may shed light on the involvement of chronic subtle BBBd in these conditions.
Background Pharmacological treatment of CNS diseases is limited due to the presence of the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Recent years showed significant advancement in the field of CNS drug delivery enablers, with technologies such as MR-guided focused ultrasound reaching clinical trials. This have inspired researchers in the field to invent novel brain barriers opening (BBo) technologies that are required to be simple, fast, safe and efficient. One such technology, recently developed by us, is BDF (Barrier Disrupting Fields), based on low pulsed electric fields (L-PEFs) for opening the BBB in a controlled, safe, reversible and non-invasive manner. Here, we conducted an in vivo study to show that BDF is a feasible technology for delivering Doxorubicin (Doxo) into mice brain. Means for depicting BBBo levels were developed and applied for monitoring the treatment and predicting response. Overall, the goals of the presented study were to demonstrate the feasibility for delivering therapeutic Doxo doses into naïve and tumor-bearing mice brains and applying delayed–contrast MRI (DCM) for monitoring the levels of BBBo. Methods L-PEFs were applied using plate electrodes placed on the intact skull of naïve mice. L-PEFs/Sham mice were scanned immediately after the procedure by DCM (“MRI experiment”), or injected with Doxo and Trypan blue followed by delayed (4 h) perfusion and brain extraction (“Doxo experiment”). Doxo concentrations were measured in brain samples using confocal microscopy and compared to IC50 of Doxo in glioma cell lines in vitro. In order to map BBBo extent throughout the brain, pixel by pixel MR image analysis was performed using the DCM data. Finally, the efficacy of L-PEFs in combination with Doxo was tested in nude mice bearing intracranial human glioma tumors. Results Significant amount of Doxo was found in cortical regions of all L-PEFs-treated mice brains (0.50 ± 0.06 µg Doxo/gr brain) while in Sham brains, Doxo concentrations were below or on the verge of detection limit (0.03 ± 0.02 µg Doxo/gr brain). This concentration was x97 higher than IC50 of Doxo calculated in gl261 mouse glioma cells and x8 higher than IC50 of Doxo calculated in U87 human glioma cells. DCM analysis revealed significant BBBo levels in the cortical regions of L-PEFs-treated mice; the average volume of BBBo in the L-PEFs-treated mice was x29 higher than in the Sham group. The calculated BBBo levels dropped exponentially as a function of BBBo threshold, similarly to the electric fields distribution in the brain. Finally, combining non-invasive L-PEFs with Doxo significantly decreased brain tumors growth rates in nude mice. Conclusions Our results demonstrate significant BBBo levels induced by extra-cranial L-PEFs, enabling efficient delivery of therapeutic Doxo doses into the brain and reducing tumor growth. As BBBo was undetectable by standard contrast-enhanced MRI, DCM was applied to generate maps depicting the BBBo levels throughout the brain. These findings suggest that BDF is a promising technology for efficient drug delivery into the brain with important implications for future treatment of brain cancer and additional CNS diseases.
Using cross-sectional data from N = 4274 young adults across 16 countries during the COVID-19 pandemic, we examined the cross-cultural measurement invariance of the perceived vulnerability to disease (PVD) scale and tested the hypothesis that the association between PVD and fear of COVID-19 is stronger under high disease threat [that is, absence of COVID-19 vaccination, living in a country with lower Human Development Index (HDI) or higher COVID-19 mortality]. Results supported a bi-factor Exploratory Structural Equation Modeling model where items loaded on a global PVD factor, and on the sub-factors of Perceived Infectability and Germ Aversion. However, cross-national invariance could only be obtained on the configural level with a reduced version of the PVD scale (PVD-r), suggesting that the concept of PVD may vary across nations. Moreover, higher PVD-r was consistently associated with greater fear of COVID-19 across all levels of disease threat, but this association was especially pronounced among individuals with a COVID-19 vaccine, and in contexts where COVID-19 mortality was high. The present research brought clarity into the dimensionality of the PVD measure, discussed its suitability and limitations for cross-cultural research, and highlighted the pandemic-related conditions under which higher PVD is most likely to go along with psychologically maladaptive outcomes, such as fear of COVID-19.
Surveying the role of the arts in social movements offers approaches for ways in which art therapists can be collaborators in peacebuilding. A contemporary review of activist and protest art reveals four sources of inspiration for how art therapists can contribute: intentional symbols and metaphors, solidarity, memorializing, and resilience. When integrated with peacebuilding strategies, art therapists can support social movements by visualizing injustices, representing voices, bringing people together, and imagining solutions. By working in collaboration with peacebuilders, art therapists can apply social justice stances to different strands of peacebuilding.
This study aims to identify the sources of spillovers affecting tourism tokens and classify the type of assets to which they correspond. Using daily data for different asset classes from June 2018 through November 2022, we employ a TVP-VAR methodology to test the connectedness between two tourism tokens, two leading travel equity indices, and the two dominant cryptocurrencies, namely, Bitcoin and Ethereum. The findings show that tourism tokens are relatively independent of fluctuations in the traditional sources affecting the travel and leisure sector, such as the U.S. dollar, the price of oil, or travel equity indices. These results hint that tourism tokens are more closely related to cryptocurrencies rather than pure travel goods. The results may help decision-makers in the travel and hospitality industries considering the use of tourism tokens identify the potential forces impacting them. ARTICLE HISTORY
Background Interventions using split belt treadmills (SBTM) aim to improve gait symmetry (GA) in Parkinson's disease (PD). Comparative effects in conjugated SBTM conditions were not studied systematically despite potentially affecting intervention outcomes. We compared gait adaptation effects instigated by SBTM walking with respect to the type (increased\decreased speed) and the side (more/less affected) of the manipulated belt in PD. Methods Eight individuals with PD performed four trials of SBTM walking, each consisted of baseline tied belt configuration, followed by split belt setting – either WS or BS belt's speed increased or decreased by 50% from baseline, and final tied belt configuration. Based on the disease's motor symptoms, a 'worst' side (WS) and a 'best' side (BS) were defined for each participant. Results SB initial change in GA was significant regardless of condition (p ≤ 0.02). This change was however more pronounced for BS-decrease compared with its matching condition WS-increase (p = 0.016). Similarly, the same was observed for WS-decrease compared to BS-increase (p = 0.013). Upon returning to tied belt condition, both BS-decrease and WS-increased resulted in a significant change in GA (p = 0.04). Upper limb asymmetry followed a similar trend of GA reversal, although non-significant. Conclusions Stronger effects on GA were obtained by decreasing the BS belt’s speed of the best side, rather than increasing the speed of the worst side. Albeit a small sample size, which limits the generalisability of these results, we propose that future clinical studies would benefit from considering such methodological planning of SBTM intervention, for maximising of intervention outcomes. Larger samples may reveal arm swinging asymmetries alterations to match SBTM adaptation patterns. Finally, further research is warranted to study post-adaption effects in order to define optimal adaptation schemes to maximise the therapeutic effect of SBTM based interventions.
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