Civilization and Its Ironies

Racism. Xenophobia. Prejudice. Discrimination. It seems every word written against these forms of hatred will be ignored nonetheless. People feel targeted, shamed, belittled when hate is addressed. After all, hate is an emotion we all feel. Whenever these topics are brought up, whether privately or publicly, reality tends to shift a bit towards the severe,…Read more Civilization and Its Ironies

The Unimaginable

As the year draws to a close, it seems only natural to review the most memorable events of the past 365 days. Politically, culturally, ideologically, it has been quite a roller coaster. Many of us have continuously found ourselves in surreal places this year—places we never could have imagined, back when the future was just…Read more The Unimaginable

Of Blood and Air: Homelands Lost and Made

I feel must address the devastation, disappointment and the profound elation (for a significant number of people) spreading in shock waves throughout Germany at this time, the country that I call home. The results of the election were announced a few days ago and they were relatively grim: Chancellor Angela Merkel held on to her…Read more Of Blood and Air: Homelands Lost and Made

Grey Territories

Immigration, integration, identity, culture, multicultural(ism): most people tend to approach these words with wariness, perhaps even anger and hostility. This may come as a surprise, but I can relate to these feelings completely. I totally understand that these topics in particular have been (over-)saturating our media landscape and the rhetoric of politicians in recent years.…Read more Grey Territories

Inspiration for a Permanent Tourist: Pico Iyer

Growing up in the US, I often found myself caught between two worlds: my somewhat traditional Filipino upbringing and the dominant American culture of my teachers and peers. Later, after traveling the world and relocating to Germany as an adult, I felt even more conflicted in terms of cultural and national identity. What am I? An American?…Read more Inspiration for a Permanent Tourist: Pico Iyer