27 June 2007

Fwd: from Lawrence Pub Philosophy Meeting, 6PM, sunday: Mixing Cultures

--- In philomadridgroup@yahoogroups.co.uk, "philomadrid"
<philomadrid@...> wrote:

Dear friends,

A quick reminder that we now start at ******6pm****** and should be
grateful if you can pass the word around.

On the theme of reporting or somehow recording conclusions most of you
know my attitude; it takes too much time, someone has to take notes
but most serious of all it goes against the spirit of intellectual
indulgence. However, those who still feel the need to report their
opinions or ideas I will post your messages on the website and
yahoogroup website. Suggestions welcome!

Next Sunday we are talking about mixing cultures, hope you'll be able
to make it.

See you soon and take care


SUNDAY 6.00pm START at Molly Malone's Pub, probably downstairs, but
just in case there is no football on go to the very back of the pub,
then turn left and left again!


Subscribe yahoo group send an email to:

tel 606081813


Pub Molly Malone, c/ Manuela Malasaña, 11, Madrid 28004
metro: <Bilbao> : buses: 21, 149, 147


Mixing Cultures

There are many reasons why cultures would want to be mixed. And after
the smoke screen and the white noise have ebbed away, we can account
for mixing cultures on some very basic reasons: economic and political.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that the pre-dominant need for
mixing cultures is due to economic reasons. I mean, once we've
excluded the eccentric and the adventurous, why would anyone want to
leave their place of origin to start all over again?

The political background, however, for mixing cultures is usually wars
or revolutions. These are the real causes of large movements and
displacement of people from countries. When we look at history we see
that this will eventually create the need to mix cultures.

Having identified the parameters, let's have a look at the various
ways cultures are mixed. I have identified the following models, but
you might have your own favourites:
* melting pot model,
* imposed mix,
* let's mix,
* pseudo mix,
* we're here for the fun model.

Before I say more about what I mean about these various models it
might be worth mentioning the obvious. Like most of these things we
are talking about people here. The culture we are talking about is
more or less what a group of people get up to when together.

Of course, you might think that this is obvious, even if in political
philosophy and political science the idea that real people are
involved can be a bit awkward. In any event, it might be worth keeping
in mind that the mix or clash of cultures tends to affect people with
real blood and bones.

The United Kingdom (modern version) and the United States are usually
hailed as paradigm cases of a melting pot mixing type of cultures.
These models are sufficiently successful to be an export commodity.
And the barometer of this success are the queues outside the
respective embassies waiting for visas.

The imposed mix model has a long pedigree which has evolved through
the centuries. This model can best be described by the attributed
words of Julius Caesar, ''I came, I saw, I conquered.'' Of course,
today the moral status of this method is quite questionable. However,
from a historical point of view it is without ant doubt a very
successful model.

Some might argue that the spectacular failure of the imposed mix in
1945 led directly to the "let's mix'' method. Today, the European
Union is a modern example of the "lets mix" method. It is of course
quite ironic that this method was also used by Wales, Scotland and
England to form what we call today the United Kingdom. The question
is, can twenty five countries (and counting) pull off the same feat?

A pseudo mix method is really two cultures living side by side in the
same country. There are a number of examples in Asia and Africa; some
successful some not so successful. In any event the unsuccessful
pseudo models tend to involve a lot of dead pe

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