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More than a club: FC Barcelona and Catalonia's road to independence

As Catalonia goes to the polls, Sid Lowe looks at one of the region's great cultural sporting icons and its role in Catalan identity...

 

Sports and cultural identity of a region are often intertwined. As Catalonia is poised to break from Spain, this video shows how the local teams (especially FC Barcelona) are at the center of political identity and part of the very fabric of the political movement that is pushing for independence.  For more, see this recent GITN.

 

Tags: sport, Spain, Europe, devolution, autonomy.


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, September 12, 2013 12:54 PM

Sports and cultural identity of a region are often intertwined. As Catalonia is poised to break from Spain, this video shows how the local teams (especially FC Barcelona) are at the center of political identity and part of the very fabric of the political movement that is pushing for independence.  For more, see this recent Geography in the News article.


Tags: sport, Spain, Europe, devolution, autonomy.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, October 30, 2014 9:10 PM

As a soccer fan and a fan of FC Barcelona, Whenever I watch FC Barcelona play against Real Madrid, the commentators always describe both clubs as a symbol of independence and the symbol of political identity. Both teams are embodiments of the struggle that Spain and Catalonia are going through.

Bob Beaven's curator insight, February 19, 2015 3:01 PM

As a soccer fan (although of CR7 in La Liga), I know that Barca has the saying "Mes que un club" which means more than a club in the Catalan language.  FCB's colors, in fact, represent the colors of Barcelona, which is the major force in the region of Catalonia.  The club allows the ethnic people to express pride in their heritage, and allowed them in the Franco era, a freedom of expression that was not otherwise granted to them.  However, as the video discusses, FCB cannot be the main force for the region's independence, that will have to come from the people pressing the people to the Spanish Government.  However, FCB represents for the Catalans a pride in having their own unique culture, and being a unique people different than ethnic Spaniards.  Barca being more than a club is far different from the BPL team of Manchester United or the La Liga club of Real Madrid.  While these clubs may represent regions within the countries, they do not represent regions who are different than the status quo.  Followers of Man U are not very different than the Southern English (they are not their own people).  I think it is highly interesting how sports teams can mean so much to certain regions.

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The Cultural Geography of a Viral Sensation

The Cultural Geography of a Viral Sensation | Global Perspectives @ BM | Scoop.it
The Gangnam Style! sensation is all over the internet, complete with parodies that both honor and mock the original.  This first video is the original, which in a few short months received well ove...

 

The following link has the video, parodies and infographics to help student explore the meaning behind the cultural phenomenon. 


Questions to Ponder: Considering the concept of cultural diffusion, what do we make of this phenomenon? What cultural combinations are seen in this? How has the technological innovations changed how cultures interact, spread and are replicated?

 

Tags: popular culture, video, diffusion, globalization, culture, place, technology, unit 3 culture. 


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Rich's comment, October 3, 2012 2:27 PM
When I first saw this music video and heard the song I remember myself saying "I have no idea what is going on, but the human race is a better place thanks to this guy." I may not know what he is saying but it puts me in a great mood. This guy is breaking cultural and geographical boundaries with music.
Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, April 14, 2014 6:07 PM

Culture and globalization has spread this song across the United States breaking records and trending on sites such as Twitter. Our exposure to different cultures is great. However, if you do not like songs that get stuck in your head, do not listen to this song . LOL

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Daily Life in Afghanistan

Daily Life in Afghanistan | Global Perspectives @ BM | Scoop.it
We tend to look at Afghanistan through the lens of conflict, with good reason. Deaths of American forces recently reached 2000 in the 11 years since US involvement in the country began.

 

Yes, Afghanistan is a war-ravaged country; but it is also a place that families call home and where children play.  This photo essay is a nice glimpse into ordinary lives in Central Asia.

 

Tags: Afghanistan, images, culture, Central Asia. 


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Jason Schneider's curator insight, March 3, 2015 1:09 PM

It appears that Afghanistan has a poor economy. It's lifestyle is definitely different from the way we live in the United States. The buildings are not as well-developed as the buildings in New York City and Chicago. Also, Afghanistan seems to lack cleanliness which allows diseases to spread throughout the country, and perhaps throughout small parts of other countries that border it.

Alex Vielman's curator insight, November 19, 2015 12:34 AM

It is important to remember that, besides all the problems, attacks, and battles/wars that are occurring in countries such as Afghanistan, people are still living there daily lives. The people of Afganistan still work, children play in the streets, and there is still laughter amongst the chaos. Through over a decade of war, thousands of people have died from both the US and Afghan soldiers. It is very concerning that nothing stops even if a disaster occurs. These people live there lives everyday perhaps not knowing what will happen next. Especially now, with the ISIS issues and Al Qaida issues, thousands of people are suffering. These images show daily lives of Afghans, carrying on in the face of bitter warfare and economic hardship. These images show people living in this region and one can easily compare to other regions that Afghans have it a lot harder than many other regions around the world. 

Matt Ramsdell's curator insight, December 7, 2015 4:06 PM

Daily life in Kabul is a daily struggle as one of the most impoverished places in the world. They suffer from a lack of infrastructure to the lack of medicine in the hospitals. Many of the invasions that have occued have weakened a already weak country. That has led to many deaths and much fighting on the area. These images show many of the struggles that pepople go through on a daily basis. This was not just the people being in poverty but with the wars and stuff that have happened there has to led them to be even more worse off.