Last week we worked on a photo essay. This essay was carried out by the Hanze students in the area of Ebbingestraat in Groningen. The Arlington students carried it out on Lee Highway in Arlington. We both selected 5 pictures which, in our view, pointed out different kinds of globalization in that specific area. Based upon my own observations I noticed signs of migration. For example, many signs on the side of the road are written in the English language instead of Dutch. People are anticipating on people who aren’t born in Groningen or known with the dutch language. Besides that, I saw different kinds of restaurants; Chinees, Spanish or Italian. All these shops provide actually the same thing, food, but the difference is with the familiarity and similarities to things native to their own country. The way they bring their own kinds of food shows a big form of globalization and give immigrants the opportunity to bring a piece of home to the other side off the world. Globalization has an important function as an integration system. It gives foreign people a way to blend in every community. Globalization does not only helps with communicating, eating or connecting in a new community, it also helps immigrants to feel good and understand the ‘new’ world around them. Perhaps globalization even causes borders to fade. There is a global community in which different cultures are included. We are culturally different but we are starting to see this difference more and more as an united culture in which everyone is welcome. The level of immigrants is rising and causes big individual differences. However, due to the large degree of globalization, different cultures are part of the community rather than being imported.
Reflecting on an individual scale. When Jonas and I were looking for the pictures, we were walking around Groningen. I was surprised by the assumptions we sometimes made. There were different kinds of paintings around the Dot at the Ebbinge streets. The first thing that came to our minds was the fact that the girl on the painting, couldn’t be a dutch girl. But why couldn’t she? Because of the dark collared hair and the collared skin? Judging somebody on their appearance is the biggest mistake you can make in the global world nowadays. A girl with Asian or Italian roots, can defiantly be a dutch girl but is here own individual within the community. So maybe we don’t need to talk about a Dutch, Italian or Asian culture, but we do need to talk about a global community.
If I take a step back and look to the different communities around me, I asked myself which community is most connect with myself. If I needed to introduce myself, I would definitely start with telling about my roots in Groningen and I would start telling about my student time in this particular city. So in that case I could say that I am mainly connected with the community of Groningen. But besides my roots and interests in Groningen, I also like to travel a lot, like I told in my first blog. Traveling is my passion and is in my opinion something that’s directly linked to a global community. Not only the traveling and crossing borders itself, but also speaking different kind of languages, getting to know lots of different persons and cultures contributes to your own view of globalization. Despite my great love for traveling, I also like to come back home. In short, I think I am part of a global community but the Groningen community wil always function as my home base.
While Jonas and I were looking into the Ebbinge streets the other team members looked into Arlington. Jonas and I were surprised by the big differences between Groningen and Arlington. Groningen is a vibrant student city with lots of cultures. Arlington, on the other hand, is much more limited in the different kinds of globalization. Jonas an I had mostly collected pictures showing structures whose architect symbolized globalization. The others, Sam, Nikki and Katie, found mostly pictures which were directly linked to globalization. They looked more of a literal sense of globalization. We managed to collecte 10 pictures in total, which matched our own definition of globalization. As a group we noticed that globalization is normalized within our daily live. It actually occurs more often than you may think. We enjoyed this group project allot since we got to know each-other cities better, even though we performed the project on a big distance.