El bonito nombre de la revolución que empezó en Túnez en diciembre de 2010, “La primavera árabe”, se ha convertido en un invierno perpetuo para Siria. Se cumplen cinco años desde aquel 15 de marzo de 2011, en el que Siria vivió el “Día de la Ira”. Desde entonces, la guerra en Siria se ha convertido en el peor conflicto originado por esas manifestaciones pacíficas que empezaron en las redes sociales y terminaron sangrientas en las calles.
Aún recuerdo la esperanza dudosa e incierta, pero esperanza al fin y al cabo, de un compañero de Damasco, Luay, con el que coincidí durante el verano de 2012 en Berlín. Nos contó un día en clase de alemán cómo estaba la situación política y social en Siria. En ese momento los rebeldes ya estaban en Alepo y en Damasco tan solo había manifestaciones, pero él, prudentemente, se había trasladado a la capital alemana para estudiar la especialidad de Medicina, carrera que había estudiado en su ciudad de origen. Un tipo joven, menor de 30 años, de clase media y muy inteligente, tengo que decir. Aprovechaba el verano para mejorar el alemán, para luego poder estudiar la especialidad. Su familia, padres y hermanos, se quedaron en Damasco. No sé qué será de ellos hoy.
Luay se casó con Roula, también de Siria, en 2013 y viven en la ciudad de Husum, en el norte de Alemania. Un matrimonio ambos con estudios universitarios, trabajadores, que contribuyen a la riqueza germana y que tendrán descendencia alemana. Luay y Roula han encontrado su primavera pero fuera de su país. Forman parte de los 4,8 millones de sirios que han huido de la guerra. Concretamente, forman parte de los 500.000 sirios que residen en Europa.
When I thought about studying Journalism a journalist told me: “Journalism is a job that allows people change things”. I liked the sentence and I felt identified with it. It is true that there are many degrees or ways to contribute to the change of a society, a group, a country, the world… but we, communicators have the chance to access directly to the public because our work is for people who trust us because they choose us to inform them about what is happening, about reality. I like meeting people and being with them, talk, share experiences and learn from them, travelling, languages, meeting new cultures and different ways of doing things… And of course I could be studying another degree with this profile, but while studying journalism I complete myself so I have found myself and I feel comfortable, lucky… definitely, happy.
The main difference between journalism and another university study, I think, it is the cultural and historic knowledge, the opportunity to thinking, reasoning, connecting and concluding through interpretation and observation, etc. My degree creates in me inquisitiveness that I solve while I learn and study as well as new concerns arise, but I never loose the illusion for knowing more. As long as one chooses the studies with judgement this goes like this. What makes me feel sad is seeing how some school mates are at university because it was the next stage after High School, but they don’t really now the reason why are there or what they would like to do when they finish.
Studying and going deeper in the subjects one studies means enjoying with what one deals with. We should try to achieve this feeling and way of living because what comes with us during the university period, and always, what it is studied, has to be loved. Also, it is important -in order to love what it is studied- choosing a degree because we like it and it fills us up for life, in the long run and firstly as a person and afterwards, as a journalist student and future professional (in my case). It is crucial that this goes exactly this way as anyone’s objective in life is being happy, but how is this reached through study? Simply, studying something that completes and makes us better because if we only study with the main purpose of becoming a, dedicate to, achieve something, etc. we stay above, on the surface, and it is not enough. It is not enough because if it doesn’t leave a footprint on us we are loosing time and contributing to our unhappiness.
I find appropriate remembering a piece of advice I once received when I still hadn’t clear what I wanted to study: “How do you see yourself in five, ten, fifteen, twenty years time?” Therefore, which degree helps me getting closer to that and gives me the adequate and necessary training to it?
Study and be happy.
While reading and studying the chapter The Study of History: Interpretation or Truth? written by David Sloan, one of the rules of research he proposes, in order to avoid the obstacles to truth in history, caught my attention and I wanted to share it. Sloan explains that the burden of proof in history is the responsibility of historians, they must locate and study the evidence and the quality of it, which is directly related to the quality of interpretation. Afterwards, he suggests some rules of research.
There is a rule that deserves consideration in order to avoid faulty construction of argument. Context must inform text, but in practice it receives too little attention. Interpretation of the human past requieres the ability to interpret its record. Failure to accomplish that task can impar truth in history. Such a popular generalization fails to reflect the true past and becomes an expression of a fixed idea.
G. Kitson Clark labeled a particular type of the fixed idea falacy “generic statements”. In reference to popular, present generalizations about groups of people that can find their way into history. Thus in history, as in mass media communication, many tidy references tot “the Germans, “the protestants”, “the lower class”, and “the media” can be found when in fact the group delineated was far more complex than the image conveyed byt the word.
Here is where I wanted to arrive. When we read that a nation wanted this or that, what are we reading? Germany wanted an empire in the 1880s, wanted war in 1914. Who actually wanted these things, and why did they want them? These popular, unexamined generic references lack the necessary precision to be convincing. On the other hand, any generalization about such large entities might be uncertain due to its very nature.
David Sloan concludes that present generalizations will always exist and penetrate back into the past. It is the job of historians to make them as truthful as possible.
In my opinion, generalizations damage history and truth and the lack of precision is really harmful for the generations that grow learning in this way. In fact, I have always studied Germany’s history with the word “wanted”. I do believe in a better research, documentation, study and expression of the past and its facts. Language is so wide and rich, I’m sure it could be improved.
Amazing advert. How important is the fact to explain a story, something that makes the viewer feel completely identifyed and involved. And in this video, although not being American, we are all probably going to be bewitched by this marvellous commercial. Congratulations, Chrysler.
I copy and share the script, which is absolutely worth:
It’s halftime. Both teams are in their locker room discussing what they can do to win this game in the second half.
It’s halftime in America, too. People are out of work and they’re hurting. And they’re all wondering what they’re going to do to make a comeback. And we’re all scared, because this isn’t a game.
The people of Detroit know a little something about this. They almost lost everything. But we all pulled together, now Motor City is fighting again.
I’ve seen a lot of tough eras, a lot of downturns in my life. And, times when we didn’t understand each other. It seems like we’ve lost our heart at times. When the fog of division, discord, and blame made it hard to see what lies ahead.
But after those trials, we all rallied around what was right, and acted as one. Because that’s what we do. We find a way through tough times, and if we can’t find a way, then we’ll make one.
All that matters now is what’s ahead. How do we come from behind? How do we come together? And, how do we win?
Detroit’s showing us it can be done. And, what’s true about them is true about all of us.
This country can’t be knocked out with one punch. We get right back up again and when we do the world is going to hear the roar of our engines.
Yeah, it’s halftime America. And, our second half is about to begin.
Here I am. This is the start of an excited inexperienced newcomer. Maybe the first post out of… Out of many I hope.
This summer I have the great opportunity to spend one month and a half in Cologne, Germany. It is my second summer in this city, and as one of my favourite music groups sings ‘going back is always the best part of the adventure’, I can assure you it is being like this. While here, I’ve met someone from who I’m learning quite a lot. She’s a future screenwriter. A fighter. A passionist and lover of what she does. A dreamer whose dreams will become real one day. Why I am telling you this? Because she and her way of life have encouraged me to sign in to WordPress. And here I am, writing my first post.
Taking advantage of what I’ve just written, travelling and going abroad is one of the best ways of maturing, widen ones horizons, learning other life styles, meeting people who may have nothing in common with you. Or maybe they will have too much. We can call it a challenge. Sometimes unknown, always worth. And here I am, a catalan girl/woman (aged 19) writing her first post from Cologne.