CULTURE

Posts in "Culture"

Barcelona’s African street traders swap crime for craft

BARCELONA (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – When Alioune Thiam arrived in Barcelona, he joined hundreds of other undocumented African migrants peddling their wares illegally on the streets. Now he’s part of a scheme to give some of the Spanish city’s most vulnerable people an alternative.

Link: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-spain-migrants-unemployment/barcelonas-african-street-traders-swap-crime-for-craft-idUSKBN1CH1CD

100 Women: The Dalit women breaking stereotypes by forming a drum band

Savita Devi is leading a group of 10 Dalit (formerly known as untouchable) women who have broken stereotypes by coming together to form a drum band.

Performances by drum bands have been part of an old tradition at various ceremonies, but it’s a profession almost completely dominated by men.

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-41446323/100-women-the-dalit-women-breaking-stereotypes-by-forming-a-drum-band

The Floor Routine That Broke The Internet

Gymnastics at the highest levels is serious business: A minor stumble can mean losing a medal, and stepping out of bounds could keep you off the team entirely.

At a college meet over the weekend, Katelyn Ohashi of U.C.L.A. delivered a brilliant technical floor routine, with nary a step on her landings. But a YouTube video of that performance has attracted millions of viewers not because of her skill level but rather the unabashed fun she seems to be having while doing it.

“What you see is how I feel,” Ohashi said of her effervescent floor routine over the weekend, which has garnered millions of views on YouTube.

Cambodian brand turns lotus flower into luxury fashion

On the large terrace of a traditional, stilted wooden Cambodian house just four kilometres from downtown Siem Reap, a dozen or so countryside workers sit cross-legged atop rattan floor mats, brows furrowed deep in concentration. Methodically – almost meditatively – they craft a mysterious product. Through an intricate process, they transform the fibre from green and woody stems into ‘white gold’ – shimmering threads of lotus fibre that is fast becoming a coveted luxury fabric.

http://sea-globe.com/lotus-flower-luxury-fashion/

#Jagärhär: Swedish Citizens Addressing Online Abuse, One Post At A Time

Here, here: the Swedish online love army who take on the trolls
#Jagärhär (#Iamhere) aims to battle abuse in online threads and jumps to defend those on receiving end
Critics call #jagärhär censorship, but Dennert and the moderators on the group are quick to emphasise that #jagärhär never comes with an agenda. They don’t tell people what to say. They simply want to defend those who are being attacked online.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jan/15/the-swedish-online-love-army-who-battle-below-the-line-comments 
The groups’s web site:
Facebook page:

Artists With Day Jobs

In Chicago, members of a punk rock band called The Bollweevils have been balancing their conventional day jobs — as a physician, a principal, an electrician and a college administrator — with their unconventional hobby for more than two decades. Reporter Jay Shefsky from Chicago PBS Station WTTW has their story.

 

TREEmail

Melbourne gave 70,000 trees email addresses so people could report on their condition. But instead people are writing love letters, existential queries and sometimes just bad puns. Read the weird, funny and philosophical emails that people are sending to Melbourne’s trees.

 

These “Karatsu-Yaki” Teacups and Saucers are Edible Rice Cakes

One evening, Tsurumaru, 46, was imbibing and admiring his Karatsu-yaki sake set when he noticed that an unglazed section at the base of the ceramics had the appearance of senbei dough.

He decided there and then to try his hand at making senbei that looked the same as Karatsu-yaki as he had never heard of them being inspired by traditional pottery.

 

Tourists going crackers over pottery studio?s edible ?teacups??The Asahi Shimbun

Souvenir hunters looking for something different now have an item they can really sink their teeth into: rice crackers designed as delicate porcelain teacups.

At first glance, one wouldn’t expect the “Karatsu-yaki tohen senbei” to be edible, given that they look like prized Karatsu-yaki tableware.

Perhaps just as odd is that they are sold at Nakazato Tarouemon Tobo, a famed Karatsu-yaki pottery studio founded here more than four centuries ago.

The studio commissioned confectionery maker and wholesaler Tsurumaru to learn the molding and painting techniques for Karatsu-yaki pottery to create the special rice crackers.

The senbei are displayed near the entrance to the studio, each priced at 300 yen ($2.60), along with dainty “mamezara” small plates. The crackers are based on four representative patterns of Karatsu-yaki, including plant-themed “e-Karatsu” and “Chosen-Karatsu” (Korean Karatsu), which features rice-straw ash and iron-based glazes in perfect harmony.

Header image: Koichi Anzai

In the future, there are ‘Better Worlds’

 

Better Worlds is partly inspired by Stephenson’s fiction anthology Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future as well as Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories from Social Justice Movements, a 2015 “visionary fiction” anthology that is written by a diverse array of social activists and edited by Walidah Imarisha and adrienne maree brown. Their premise was simple: whenever we imagine a more equitable, sustainable, or humane world, we are producing speculative fiction, and this creates a “vital space” that is essential to forward progress.

The stories of Better Worlds are not intended to be conflict-free utopias or Pollyanna-ish paeans about how tech will solve everything; many are set in societies where people face challenges, sometimes life-threatening ones. But all of them imagine worlds where technology has made life better and not worse, and characters find a throughline of hope. We hope these stories will offer you the same: inspiration, optimism, or, at the very least, a brief reprieve that makes you feel a little bit better about what awaits us in the future — if we find the will to make it so. 

More: https://www.theverge.com/2018/12/5/18055980/better-worlds-science-fiction-short-stories-video

 

A Walk in the Woods: A Photo Appreciation of Trees

A Buddha head entwined within the roots of a tree is seen in the ruins of the ancient city of Ayutthaya, Thailand July 14, 2016. Picture taken July 14, 2016. REUTERS/Jorge Silva – RTST1Z1

A collection of images of unusual, intriguing, and beautiful trees and forests around the world, from Madagascar to Poland, Scotland to Hong Kong, the United States, and more.

https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2017/07/an-appreciation-of-trees/534153/