Just now, sitting at my desk in Klagenfurt, catching this fabulous view over grey rainy town, hills and mountains, listening to the latest Episode on Diana’s podcast and reading Bangkok Post Article about Saudi woman, who defies driving ban… That highlights questions about the world, we are living in. Are we by any chance aware, that there is something out there for us Europeans, behind the European borders?
The more I read, the more I am aware, that people kind of live in different worlds.—And that does not necessarily include alien-populations on some other planet. I was more thinking on parts of the Earth, and people living there and having almost no contact with any other part of that same world.
Of course you go to school, you learn about Africa, Tibet and Middle East. And for sure, you do consume regional media coverage… But this purely secondary experience, or knowledge, if you want, is filed somewhere under distant empathy, kind of unreal relationship, just like the one you develop to Cinderella when listening to bedtime stories.
I believe it’s extremely sad, how I, for example, had been completely framed into the so-called Western World. I had to turn almost 30 to come closer to the Middle East. Through my work I’ve got to know so much new, inspiring ideas and was also very lucky to speak to some sparkling authors of that ideas, who friendly welcomed me in their lives, work and culture. Young women and men from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE… live lives, that are so very different from (let me use myself as example again) mine—especially in terms of courage, knowledge, reflected criticism and engagement.
They are working on causes, that might eventually change their culture. They fight with words, arguments, doubts, beliefs and humor. But their criticism is far, far away from the one, that is flooding slovenian communicative spheres, that I follow (I do not dare to judge on the whole Western World). Instead of public or semi-public rants, those young Arabs are developing their own discursive digital culture. They understand the Digital, what it means and how it works, and use it as a platform for developing their knowledge and ideas further, to organize the goals, to discuss, which problems are burning, to change community, culture, transcending its limitations.
How does that look like and why is it important, deeply explains Esra’a al Shafei in Interview for TED Blog. She is young woman, founder of big Online-Community, whose hard work already showed some important cultural/political influence. Inspiring!
What a different life, what a different world from the one I live in. From the one, where successful people are fighting tu push their firms further, to monetize their (wonderful, great, and sometimes even useless) ideas. The life, where I seat at my desk, read blogs from other worlds, about other lives and predominantly reflect just me, myself and I.