Thursday, September 30, 2010

My Research Essay Topic

When thinking of the ties between the United States and the rest of the world I rarely think of India. I knew very little about the country so the very little research I've done has been an interesting task. I know India has a lot to offer especially with such a booming economy, but it made me wonder what benefit the United States gains from acquiring a tie with the country. I dont really know why or how the Indian community became involved with the United Stetes but it might be greatly influenced by the huge amount of job opportunities in the United States and the "promise of a gretater life."
After reading the Wikipedia entry for India I quickly learned of its colorful culture and traditions. I learned of the country's demographics, for example, India has an estimated population of 1,186,665,000. But most importantly, I learned of it's financial growth and its nuclear testing called Operation Smiling Buddha. India ha been involved in neuclear testing since 1974 and since then has become a neuclear power hence becoming a threat to the United States. Its promising economy is rapidly booming and the United States might be interested in joining that market and through that providing greater variety to the United States. Now I have two HUGE reasons to why the United States to become involved with India. But besides that, much of the information provided by Wikipedia was useless to my research paper. Information such as sports played in India, its flowers, animals, food, anthem, emblem, fruits, states and terretories are irrelevant. The one section that was most relevant to my task was about a paragraph long and mentioned a tie between the United States and India but failed to provide a working link.  

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Problem with Tourism Draft

After reading "A Small Place" by Jamaica Kincaid and "Slumdog Tourism" by Kennedy Odede I wondered what role I played as a tourist. Am I making a economic change in the country, am I embracing the culture, or am I being ignorant and just pushing aside the issues placed before me? After all, this is my vacation, my escape.
Kincaid opens our eyes and welcomes us to her country of Antigua. She shows us the Antigua she knows, an Antigua that although it is beautiful and breathtaking, it is a country in desperate need. With a struggling economy, very little support, and the inability to compete in the markets makes progress unobtainable. But when we make our vacation plans we overlook the things we see in the papers and the news. Kincaid expresses that we think that by visiting and spending our money in the country we're contributing to the economy but in fact we're damaging it further. We're, in a way, forcing our culture into their country. The more we visit the more our country gets involved in the country. For example, there have been many successful attempts to bring fast food chains and foreign cultures into countries such as Antigua to help "stimulate" their economy. However, Kincaid expresses the negative results of similar mergers, "The Antigua that I knew, the Antigua in which I grew up, is not the Antigua you, a tourist would see now, that Antigua no longer exists."(p.23)
"Slumdog Tourism" takes a look at a different problem tourists seem to cause. Odede expresses his feelings towards the fad that many celebrities have imposed on many Americans. Many people are taking vacation just to see how the other half lives. It seems to be this obsession over being grateful of what you have and feeling fortunate. But instead of these tourist helping the less fortune they see firsthand they actually take pictures and find it as entertainment. “Slum tourism turns poverty into entertainment ... and then go back to their lives and leave me, my family, and my community right where we were before.”(p.1)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

I Choose Exile Response

After reading "I Choose Exile" by  Richard Wright I felt that in one way he exaggerated his thoughts and feelings towards America. He has an inner conflict, a deep hate for America yet he wont let go of it completely. It's like a bad breakup where the guy loves the girl but hates the fact that she left him.
" I live in voluntary exile in France and I like it. There is nothing in the life of America that I miss or yearn for... I shall of course, keep my American citizenship, my American passport; but I prefer to live out my days among civilized people."
Ok, confused?!  I sure am. I thought he hated America, the land of uncivilized people where there isn't an inch of freedom or as he states, "It was only in America where so much freedom is lacking that one hears long and impassioned arguments about freedom ... It is like listening to a starving man tell of his need for food."
Here is my thought Richard, get your thoughts and feelings in order. If you don't like America and how its run then Ovua! and while you're gone leave your American rights behind. America isn't perfect but it sure is better than living in many other places. You found a place that fits you, then HOORAY FOR YOU but leave the trash talking to your diary.
He was asked to write of his new life in Paris yet he flipped it around to fit his vengeful and hateful thoughts. Yes, it was difficult for him to have a life free of judgement but he didn't attempt to fix anything he just got fed up and left. What will happen if he encounters problems in France? Will he pick up and move to India? What if the same thing happens there? A pessimist will never find happiness unless he changes his mind. He will forever encounter an issue wherever he goes because he seems to focus on the negatives. Wen did he ever mention the good? Did he ever think that the only reason he was able to write and publish "Native Son" and "Black Boy" was because he had freedom of speech? Guess he never thought that one through.

The optimist sees the rose and not its thorns; the pessimist stares at the thorns, oblivious to the rose."
                           -Kahlil Gibran