Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Tahrir, Missouri

One good reason to travel abroad and to learn about other countries in general is that it can help us to understand our own society a bit better. After spending a summer in Mexico, for example, I returned to a job in consulting, and the contrast gave me deeper insights into how my own culture relates to time.

I was reminded of this yesterday when listening to Daniel Estrin who lives near Ferguson, Missouri but works in Palestine, Egypt, and elsewhere in the Middle East. He sees familiar clashes unfolding near his home town, and his experiences abroad help him to understand the protests as part of a broader social movement that arise from geographies of unequal standing as citizens.

Most of the protests are peaceful, of course, even if that does not make for the best television. And the protests are aimed at rethinking the conditions from which violence against innocents so often arises.
Die-in, Chapel Hill, NC. Image: Jeremy McKellar via HuffPost.

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