Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Wednesday, July 24, 2019 01:13:35 AM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Culture is the bridge to humanity

By
28th-Nov-2018       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

Stavros Papagianneas :
We are currently living in the midst of a historic time period in which mistrust and polarisation between societies are rising. Disinformation, fake news, hate speech and intolerance are poisoning our lives.  Especially, the nations in the East and South part of the Mediterranean are victims of bloody conflicts.
More than 20 years ago, the European Union set itself a foreign policy ambition for the entire Mediterranean region in the Euro-Med Barcelona Conference in 1995. Since then, we have experienced the terrorist attacks in September 2001, the US interventions in the Middle East and the Arab uprisings that have drastically changed Europe's policy outlook in the region.
Citizens need alternative narratives to fight extremist discourses, uprising fascism and radicalisation.
That is why our societies have to empower young voices by providing platforms for young people to build together more open, inclusive and resilient communities.
Especially in the Euro-med region where war is still there. And that is what the Anna Lindh Foundation is doing. Bringing people together and building a culture based on dialogue and exchange.
Inclusiveness and empathy are paramount. We have to firmly believe in the power of dialogue and culture because this increases our tolerance, makes us freer, enlarges our perspectives, boosts our progress, makes our democracies stronger and gives hope and courage to oppressed people around the world.
During the presentation of the findings of the new report of the Anna Lindh Foundation on 22 November in Rome, Elisabeth Guigou, President of the ALF highlighted how important culture is in finding solutions for the issues of the day, not only in the Euro-Med region but in the world in general.
She said that "if we fail to invest in culture now there is a danger that we will all be caught up in a global maelstrom in which cultures would be hijacked for the most retrograde and criminal ends.
If on the other hand, we all resolve to meet this challenge head-on, in 25 years the people of both shores of the Mediterranean will form a human and economic community united by their common destiny and capable of making a lasting mark on history. Globalisation would not then breed marginalisation and the frustration and loss of identity this can engender."
The report revealed that the centrality of intercultural dialogue is pivotal in addressing the issues of the day in the Euro-Med region.
The findings of the report on Intercultural Trends and Social Change in the Euro-Mediterranean show that the centrality of intercultural dialogue is pivotal in addressing the issues of the day, from the social impact of the refugee crisis to the root causes of radicalisation and challenging extremist narratives.
More than 13.000 people across 13 countries were interviewed about their expectations, concerns, interests and values. The countries surveyed included eight in the EU (Austria, Croatia, Finland, France, Italy, Poland, Portugal and the Netherlands) and five Southern and Eastern Mediterranean (SEM) countries (Algeria, Israel, Jordan, Palestine and Tunisia).
The report presents evidence of a convergence of aspirations and expectations among societies in the South and in the North of the Mediterranean in terms of great values of aspirations of peace, humanity, openness, sharing, without eliminating cultural differences.
The vast majority of citizens interviewed say that education programmes, multi-cultural classrooms, youth-led initiatives and support to youth participation in public life are key to prevent conflicts in our societies that are becoming more and more diverse.
They also recognise a high level of importance to the organisation of cultural and artistic initiatives, of training in diversity management and prevention of radicalisation, the support of exchanges between people from different parts of the region and the enhancement of media literacy.
Looking at the possibilities for dialogue between the regions, the survey found that interactions are most common in some of the EU countries surveyed.
On average, 53% of respondents in the European countries replied that, in the past 12 months, they had talked to or met someone from a SEM country. In the SEM countries, 35% of respondents had talked to, or met with someone from a European country in the same time frame.
The key qualities associated with defining the Mediterranean region are shared history, shared heritage, and shared way of life - especially cuisine. Migration, instability and conflict are also acknowledged as relevant aspects but to a much lesser degree.
Our globalised world is confronted with fundamentalist reactions of local, ethnic and religious groups who feel their identity is threatened. The opening of markets for capital, products and services and the boost in direct foreign investment is not enough.
We need more inclusive and empathetic societies to fight the lack of trust and intolerance. We need alternative narratives to tackle extremist discourses and radicalisation. That is why we have to invest more in culture. Cultural heritage and culture is the cement which binds our societies together.

(Stavros Papagianneas is the managing director of StP Communications and author of Rebranding Europe).

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

City »

'Aparajeya Bangladesh' formed a human chain in front of the Jatiya Press Club on Tuesday demanding release of BNP Chief Begum Khaleda Zia.


Editorial »

Check mob beating


IN the last six months, 36 people were killed by mobs. In the last five days, eight, including two women, were killed and at least 30 others were injured. Shockingly, many of the victims were intellectually challenged. Mob attacks on people labelling victims "child kidnappers" continue unabated despite several directives ...

Sports »

Tokyo 2020 comes too early for karate kid's Olympic dream


AFP, Nagaoka :Sweat pours off Mahiro Takano as the 13-year-old karate black belt trades blows with a grown man almost twice her size, finishing with a blood-curdling roar, then a dainty bow.The petite schoolgirl is used to punching above her weight - since taking up karate in kindergarten she has ...

International »

Pope urges concrete measures to protect Syrian civilians


AP, Vatican City :Pope Francis has sent Syrian President Bashar Assad a letter expressing his "profound concern" for the humanitarian situation in Syria and in particular the plight of civilians in Idlib province.The Vatican said Cardinal Peter Turkson, one of Francis' top advisers, hand-delivered the letter to Assad during a ...

International »

Trump praises Pakistan's role in ‘progress’ on Afghan peace


President Donald Trump on Monday hailed Pakistan's help in advancing peace talks in Afghanistan, a marked shift in tone as the United States seeks an accord with the Taliban to end almost 18 years of war.Speaking from the Oval Office alongside Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan, Trump also warned he ...

Business & Economy »

Abdul Aziz, Additional Managing Director of Shahjalal Islami Bank Ltd and Naimul Huda, General Manager of Finance & Accounts of Incepta Pharmaceuticals Ltd, exchanging an agreement signing document at bank's corporate office in the city on Tuesday. Bank's Managing Director M Shahidul Islam, Deputy Managing Directors M Akther Hossain, Mian Quamrul Hasan Chowdhury and Imtiaz U Ahmed, among others, were present. Under the deal, all employee of the company can open their bank account in the bank without keeping any initial deposit and will enjoy other Banking facilities.


Entertainment »

Jacqueline opens up about launching her Youtube channel


One of the most influential celebrities of Bollywood Jacqueline Fernandez who is not only a sought after name for her commercially successful films but is also is huge name in the brand circuit. Having recently crossed 30 million followers on instagram, owing to humongous fan following across quarters, Jacqueline Fernandez ...

Entertainment »

Sonia disappearing from media


Entertainment Report :Sonia Hossain once tried to establish her career in different platforms of media like modelling, acting and hosting. Bad temperament, high ambition and self announced talent made her unsuccessful media personality. As a result, her presence in media is not mentionable now. In fact, Sonia was absent from ...

Editorial »

Stand beside flood-hit people


DIFFERENT kinds of waterborne diseases have begun spreading as floodwater started receding across the country. But in the post-flood scenario, many people are suffering from diarrhoea, skin diseases, dysentery, cholera and other waterborne diseases. Officials of the Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre said the flood situation may continue improving in ...

Sports »

Lowry weathers storm to win British Open and first major


Ireland's Shane Lowry withstood howling wind and rain to win his first major at the British Open by six shots from Tommy Fleetwood on Sunday, describing the achievement as "an out-of-body experience".In desperately difficult conditions, Lowry's one-over par final round was still more than enough as he finished on 15-under ...

International »

UK leadership favourite Johnson hits more turmoil on last voting day


AFP :Britain's leadership contest entered its finale Monday with the favourite Boris Johnson facing more defections from ministers over his Brexit plan.The month-long contest between former London mayor Johnson and Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt is being decided by fewer than 200,000 grassroots members of the governing Conservative Party.The winner will ...

International »

Zelensky party heads for absolute majority in Ukraine


AFP :Ukraine's comedian-turned-president Volodymyr Zelensky is set to control an absolute majority in parliament, ushering in a generational shift in the ex-Soviet country's political arena.The 41-year-old became Ukraine's youngest ever post-Soviet leader when he took office two months ago and has promised to stamp out corruption and end a separatist ...

City »

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina presenting National Fisheries Award to Mostofa Al Rajib, Upazila Fisheries Officer, Betagi , Barguna for the latter's contribution in Fisheries Sector at a ceremony held recently in the auditorium of Krishibid Institution, Bangladesh in the city on the occasion of National Fisheries Week.


Entertainment »

Mamo under Tauquir’s direction, Bipasha’s story


Sheikh Arif Bulbon :As an actress, in the beginning of her career, Zakia Bari Mamo got the National Film Award to act in Tauquir Ahmed-directed movie Daruchini Dwip. For this reason, Mamo always respects to Tauquir Ahmed. Now she is a matured actress who always wants to work in challenging ...

Editorial »

Taking law in own hand is an ominous sign


MOBS beat to death five people, including two women, and injured 10 others on suspicion of being child kidnappers across the country on Saturday. The incidents happened just a day after three people were beaten by a mob in Thakurgaon. Incidents of mob beating have increased even after the Bridges ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news