Glossary – J


jackdaw (Corvus monedula): a corvid with a range from the British Isles to central Asia.

jackal: a small to medium-sized opportunistic omnivorous relative of the wolf, native to Africa and south-central Eurasia. There are 3 jackal species (genus: Canis).

Jainism: an Indian religion with central tenets of respect for all life, non-violence, frugality, and indifference to material possessions.

Jansenism: a mostly French Catholic theological movement that emphasized original sin, human depravity, predestination, and the necessity of divine grace; originated by Dutch theologian Cornelius Jansen, who was at odds with the powerful Jesuits, a sanctioned Roman Catholic order.

Japan: an island nation off the eastern coast of China, comprising 6,852 islands.

Japanese archipelago: the 6,852 islands that comprise the country of Japan.

Japanese macaque (Macaca fuscata): a terrestrial monkey native to Japan.

Japanese Oakblue (Arhopala japonica): a butterfly in the Lycaenidae family, indigenous to east Asia.

Japanese rice fish (aka medaka, Oryzias latipes): a small, hardy, amphidromous fish native to Southeast Asia; a common denizen of rice paddies in coastal Asia.

Japetella: a genus of small (4 cm), pelagic octopi with 1 or 2 species (a classification controversy).

jasmonate: a plant hormone employed for defense, growth, and reproductive development.

jasmonic acid (C12H18O3): a plant hormone, employed in regulating growth and stress response.

jay: a bold, raucous, medium-sized corvid of ~40 species.

jealousy: an emotional sense of rivalry.

jellyfish (aka sea jelly): a free-swimming marine animal with a gelatinous bell shaped like an umbrella, trailing tentacles. Jellyfish are the oldest multiple-organ animal, having been around for at least 700 million years. ~2,000 jellyfish species are extant.

jerboa: a hopping desert rodent found from northern Africa to east Asia.

Jericho: a city near the Jordan River; one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world: at least since 9000 BCE.

Jesuits (aka Society of Jesus) (1539–): a male Catholic order belonging to the congregation founded by Spanish priest Ignatius of Loyola. Ignatius emerged as a religious leader during the Counter-Reformation, where his absolute obedience to the Pope held him in good stead with the Church.

jet stream: an atmospheric river. Earth’s polar jet is at roughly 50º–60º latitude, and the subtropical jet is at around 30º.

Jew: an adherent of Judaism.

jeweled beetle: a beetle with a glossy, iridescent elytra, in the Buprestidae family, with ~15,500 species in 775 known genera.

jewelweed (aka impatiens, touch-me-not, snapweed): a flowering plant in the Impatiens genus, with ~1,000 species, including both annual and perennial species.

jihad: an Arabic word meaning struggle or striving, especially toward a praiseworthy goal. Jihad has had many nuances in an Islamic context. In classical Islamic law, jihad meant armed struggle against unbelievers.

Jim Crow laws: legislation in the Southern United States following the Civil War designed to segregate and subjugate the black population. Jim Crow laws stayed on the books until Federal legislation overruled them in 1964 (Civil Rights Act)–1965 (Voting Rights Act), though it took decades after that to unravel institutional discrimination. Northerners did not bother with Jim Crow laws. Segregation there was achieved through various private socioeconomic mechanisms, including job discrimination and bank lending practices.

jīva (Hinduism and Jainism): a living being – more specifically, the soul of a living organism. Compare ātman.

jnāna (Hinduism): the epiphany of pure awareness, allowing enlightenment (ātma jnāna) and moksha. Contrast ajñāna.

Johari window: a self-awareness examination heuristic created in 1955 by Joseph Luft and Harrington Ingham. The name Johari is an amalgamation of their names.

joint-stock company: a business in which ownership is divided into shares which may be bought and sold. In modern law, a joint-stock company is typically synonymous with incorporation and limited liability.

joule: the energy equivalent of passing a 1-amp current through 1-ohm resistance for 1 second. Named after James Prescott Joule, who studied energetic relationships.

JP Morgan Chase: American multinational bank. Its current structure evolved via combination of several large US banks since 1996. JP Morgan Chase has roots dating to a bank American politician Aaron Burr founded in 1799. In 2018, JP Morgan Chase was the largest of the big 4 banks in the US, which also include Bank of America, Citicorp, and Wells Fargo.

Judaism: the monotheist religion of the Jews.

judge (verb) (psychology): to determine value or utility.

judiciary: a country’s judicial/court system.

Juglar cycles: periodic economic cycles in capitalism lasting 7–11 years, identified by Clément Juglar in the 1850s. Compare Kitchin cycles, Kondratiev waves.

juglone (C10H6O3): an allelopathic secondary metabolite that is toxic or growth-stunting to many types of plants. The black walnut tree produces juglone.

jujube (Ziziphus jujuba, aka red date): a fruit-bearing Asian tree or shrub. The fruits and seeds are a Chinese and Korean traditional medicine.

July Revolution (aka French Revolution of 1830): a popular revolt 27–29 July 1830 which overthrew King Charles X over attempted repression of the press and established a constitutional monarchy. Though an anti-monarchist rebellion by Parisians in June 1832 (the June Rebellion) was suppressed, the Parisian 1848 Revolution succeeded in overthrowing the jumping plant louse (aka psyllid): a small plant-feeding louse in the family Psyllidae. Each louse species feeds on only 1 plant species (monophagous).

jumping spider: an agile spider in the Portia genus, with the best vision of all invertebrates, Jumping spiders have 4 pairs of eyes, including large anterior central eyes. Jumping spiders normally move slowly and quietly, but are capable of incredibly athletic jumps, either to snag prey or to avoid a threat. There are 5,000 distinct jumping spiders (the Portia genus), making up 13% of all spider species – the most specious spider. Jumping spiders are found everywhere but the polar regions.

junco: a sparrow found in North American forests.

jungle-runner (Ameiva corax): a whiptail lizard. The lizard is endemic to the tiny islet of Little Scrub off the east coast of Anguilla.

junk bond: a high-yielding bond that rated below investment grade.

junk DNA: a DNA sequence that does not directly code for producing a protein.

junk email (aka (email) spam): unwanted email.

Jupiter: the 5th planet from the Sun; a gas giant 2.5 times the mass of all other planets in the solar system. Jupiter has 63 sizable moons, 1 more than Saturn.

jurist: a person educated in the law (e.g., lawyer), though typically used to indicate a judge, sometimes a legal scholar.

justice: retribution for wrongdoing.

juxtacrine signaling: intercellular communication by direct contact. Compare paracrine signaling and endocrine signaling.