Tag Archives: family and world history

Zimbabwe – Home is Where the Heart Is – Reflections of a scholarly traveler – by Malvern Madondo. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

Zimbabwe – Home is Where the Heart Is – Reflections of a scholarly traveler – by Malvern Madondo. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

“There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to see the ways that you yourself have changed.” – Nelson Mandela

It was early December, two weeks before final exams and a week before my long flight back to Zimbabwe. I was going home for the first time since coming to the US to commence my first year studies. I was leaving a week before finals. International flights close to major holidays like Christmas are very expensive; I had booked my flight late enough so that I could take my exams, but early enough so that the prices wouldn’t be exorbitant. Anxiety and stress became me, yet there was the promise of going home. Home.

I remember feeling quite relieved when I submitted my last project and bade farewell to friends gliding in the hallways and tunnels leading to the library, chasing after grades and trying their best to prevent their GPA from nose-diving to a bare minimum. Only a few understood why I would be leaving so soon or why I would be traveling so far. My journey was 3 days long, including multiple stops in 3 different countries. Multiple stops, the ultimate price for a cheap flight.

I can think of several reasons why I needed to go home. To get away from everything. To find myself. To be with company and not feel alone or lonely as I often did at school. To be with family. To find motivation. To … I had been away for 16 months and that might seem too long for those who families live close enough to visit often. It may also seem too short for those who have had to be away for decades. Each person is different and has a different narrative. After 16 months of trying to acclimatize to the US culture, trying to stay afloat and at my best in my academics and other aspects of life, I welcomed the opportunity to go home as the biblical prodigal son was welcomed by his father.

I remember feeling quite overwhelmed when I approached the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport. The plane was humongous and I was glad I only had one person to my left and a window and the rest of the world to my right. In due time we departed and the airport, at first, became blurry lines of light as the jet sped by, and then became an eclipse of the night and the endless lights surrounding. I will not talk about the rest of my journey, for it might require more space than I have here. However, three days and 2 nights later, I arrived home.

I arrived home weary and smelly-sort-of. Bathing is a luxury on a long flight to a distant corner of the world. I was also missing my entire luggage save my carryon and backpack. Lost in transit, my bags arrived a couple days later, thankfully, and looking like they had survived a massive fight. Never buy a beautiful luggage piece when traveling trans-oceanic, always go for the strongest. There was no welcoming party at the airport when I arrived at noon, on the third day after leaving the US. My brother-in-law was there to pick me up, and I had no strength to explain why I only had a carryon and a backpack. In Zimbabwe, often a lot is expected from one who has been away, especially coming from THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. I felt like a tourist, coming from the airport and passing through the city center, towards home, on the edge of the town. First, I was impressed by the infrastructure and the surroundings that gave one high hopes for better. But my family’s home is far enough to reward one with a sight that will remind you ‘never to judge a book by its cover’ or to trust in first impressions.The wide tarred roads leading from the airport became thinner and by the time we reached home, they had almost disappeared. Street lights dwindled and massive buildings were replaced by shacks that hung on the edge of the road like a leech. But I was home. No assignments, exams, late night studying, club meetings, and whatever was norm in college. I was free!

Part 2

Home sweet home!

The first few days at home were a brutal reminder that life is too short. The house itself looked the same. The people were the same, only a bit older. The neighborhood kids still came out to play on the streets and anywhere else that provided enough space for whatever game the young ones set their young and green minds on. The old friend with stellar grades, who could not go beyond high school because there were no funds to further his education in college, was still there, sitting at the same verandah watching the world fleet by, one day at a time – a slow burning candle life was. The girl next door had gotten married and was living in another country.

The friend across the street was still running his barber shop, and had moved to a different location in the same street after a dispute on rental payments. My father had grown older and less mobile. Sadness. Why had I left? My younger brothers were still mischievous but had acquired some bit of responsibility and ‘wokeness’. My sister still ran the show and was the oil that made this old engine, our house, operational. My older brother was still short of a job and was contracting elsewhere within his trade as an electrician. My older sister was doing quite well, only she had grown a little unhappy with her job in the heart of the town at the Meteorology Department.

There were still water shortages and once or twice a week, my brothers and I had to wander off in search of a borehole to replenish our water supply at home. My brothers knew all the places close by and would often make a couple trips and save me the trouble to meet old friends who often had one too many questions on where I had been for the past year and a half. In a broken society, no one really announces what they have under their sleeve, best for one to mind one’s own business. The week leading to New Year saw me meeting with some friends from high school and some family members. They observed I had gotten lighter and heavier for a kid from the ghetto. What more with my beard and scruffy hair, I looked older! My skin tone had lost the symptoms of one growing up in the high density suburbs of Harare where each day was a struggle and the next meal was a blessing for some and a luxury for others. At Christmas, my family, as per our tradition, all convened at my father’s house and we had a hearty lunch and luckily my luggage had finally made it home on its own and I was able to share the little I had brought along with me from discounts at Kohl’s and Target. Heavenly bliss.

A Christmas meal in the Madondo household.

My family and I stayed up late on the last day of 2016, to welcome the New Year and whatever opportunities and blessings it brought. It did not rain that night, it poured. Despite this, the dark night was constantly made bright by excessive fireworks and the pit-pattering of rain on the asbestos roof was silenced by the celebratory screams and whistles that emanated from various homes and buildings in the area. The following day, at church, smiles were wider than usual and the people, more friendlier than normal. Some were eager to start working on their New Year’s resolutions and those of us who do not take such a tradition seriously due to several failed attempts, looked on in amusement. I only had a couple more weeks at home before I had to return to school. Within a few days, I made the trip to my town of birth to visit my aunt and her family and then onwards to visit my grandfather who lived alone and away from the bright lights and loud noises and general business of town life. Those few days I spent with this part of my family evoked a strong feeling in me that reminded me that nothing compares to home. Seeing my aunt and all that she was doing for her children and family, I was reminded that women are indeed the backbone of the family and I was inspired to do better in all my endeavors. My grandfather, now older and smaller in stature, was a delight to meet and spend the day with. Sadly, because he lived so far out of town and I was commuting to his residence with my brothers, it took longer to get there than the time we spent together. Nonetheless, after he recognized us and had a brief moment of disbelief and to thank his ancestors and God and all those gone before us who had led us to him and granted us to meet once more. It was a sad joyful moment that I think deserves a separate account of its own to justify its worth.

The days following went by pretty fast and I was gearing to say goodbye once more to my family and everything that I had known for a good part of my life. Also, I was getting back to school a few days after class started (remember I left a week before the semester ended). I had enjoyed a full month away from school and the fast-paced Western life. I felt quite empty and remorse for going back. I knew I had to, only part of me wanted to stay. For better or for worse, I was getting back on the Presidential Inauguration day and as expected, I was quite shifty and nervous as I trailed the line (queue) at the airport, waiting for my turn to go through TSA. As the Border Control officer went through my documents, I felt as if I was a criminal waiting conviction and a bit like my life was outside my control. I even feared for the wrinkle at the corner of my I-20!

Finally, I boarded the shuttle headed from the airport to Duluth, the end of the road. This time, my luggage was in place and I had this air of one who has survived a storm. I assured my family I had arrive back safe and that I had the weekend to catch up with a week’s worth of schoolwork. I arrived on a Friday and I had an early morning shift at the Help Desk where I worked. I had also managed to submit an application for a scholarship moments after I landed at the airport and was connected to endless wifi and in sync with the time zone. Home sweet home.

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In three years we have published over 250 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. The North Star Reports is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica. Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports. Eleni Birhane and Matthew Breeze, Assistant Managing Editors, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, with generous support from The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Dominican Republic – Friendship Across National Borders – by Eleni Birhane. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

Dominican Republic – Friendship Across National Borders – by Eleni Birhane. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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I met my now very dear friend Diana at the beginning of fall semester 2016. Almost instantly we became close; both of us wondered why we had not been friends until then. Not even half way through the semester, Diana suggested I go to the Dominican Republic with her to visit her family. I immediately accepted, how could I refuse such an offer! Once I had made the arrangements, she informed her family that I would be joining her on her trip for winter break. She told me that they were all happy and excited that I was coming. I knew that if they were anything like her (she stressed that they were) they would be extremely welcoming and hospitable, so I had no worries.

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My stay at the Dominican Republic was one I am not likely to ever forget. From the people to the land to the culture, everything I witnessed had a beauty that I cannot easily express in writing. I was lucky enough to experience the country not only from a tourist perspective, but also through the eyes of the local residents. Diana’s family took care of me as one of their own. Even though there was a language barrier between us (I speak almost no Spanish), I realized that if there is enough will and maybe a little help from the notoriously misleading, but undoubtedly helpful Google Translate, people from very different places and dialects can get along and even care for each other.

Other than being a much needed break from school and work, my stay at the Dominican Republic was also an informative experience. I learned a lot about the people’s culture, how laid back yet hardworking they are. I learned about the dynamics of their politics and their somewhat tense relationship with their only other neighbor on the island they share, the nation of Haiti. I learned that no matter how much I ate, Diana’s grandmother and aunt would never truly believe I was full. I enjoyed observing the similarities and differences between the Dominican Republic and my own home country Ethiopia.

Overall, by the time I had to leave I was feeling very down. I had come to truly care for her family as I believe they did for me. I know I have made friends for life and have promised myself (and them) I would come back when I could. I am very grateful I got the chance to have this experience. I encourage people to take any chance they get to travel and explore the world no matter how close or far, there might be something beautiful waiting just around the corner.

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Eleni serves as an editor for The NSR

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In three years we have published over 250 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. The North Star Reports is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica. Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, with generous support from The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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My Family Has a Website?!? – Migration, Anniversary, Rituals, Family History- by Thomas Landgren. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

My Family Has a Website?!? – Migration, Anniversary, Rituals, Family History- by Thomas Landgren. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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This summer we celebrated my Grandparents 60th wedding anniversary. Since this was such a momentous occasion all of my family members on my mom’s side, all 75 of us got together and had a little celebration. It’s always hard to get all of the families together and when it happens we have a tradition where we go through all of the pictures that the aunts and uncles took over our childhoods that we spent together. My oldest sister took charge of the tradition this year and this really sparked her interest into looking deeper into our family history. Luckily I took Professor Liang’s Introduction to World History II this last semesters so we already had a decent amount of information to go off of. After a couple of weeks my sister came across a website named after our ancestor Demetrio Erspamer last name created by the Church of our ancestor’s home town of Malosco, Italy.

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It seems that my family was a big part of the church community in Malosco and the Church had tons of information on my family and its multiple members that they, with the help of a historian, put together the website documenting our family and creating an online family tree for us. To be honest it is weird scrolling through a website and see your name and your brothers, sisters, cousins, and grandparent’s names all plastered on this website that no one in my family knew about until my sister stumbled across it. Luckily if you are still living it keeps most off your information private but it is still a weird feeling. It is always interesting to learn about your family, and to find out that mine had such a big impact in their home town before leaving to America, that the Church and the Town in the Future would still hold them to high regards that they would make a website and even a book is an awesome feeling. My family is in the process of finding the book so I will keep you updated in the near future!

Thomas serves as an editor for The NSR.

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In three years we have published over 250 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. The North Star Reports is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica. Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, with generous support from The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Gender Roles, History, Family – Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell – by Abbey DeLisle. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

Gender Roles, History, Family – Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell – by Abbey DeLisle. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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There is no doubt that things were much different in 1948 compared to 2017. My maternal grandmother was in high school from 1948-1952, during the height of the domestic scene for women in America. No boys were found in sewing or cooking classes, boys and girls had gym class separately, girls wore dresses to school every day (no shorts allowed for girls!), and only boys were allowed to take auto mechanic class. Although very irritating to me, pretty predictable. But my grandma elaborated on many more things and informed me that boys took typing along with girls and girls had shop class for 8 weeks. How intriguing! Just as I was condescending the 1950s for sexism, conversation allowed me to see complications I had never thought about before.

Moving on to the next generation, my mother, I thought I had it all figured out. My mother went to high school from 1977-1981, a time I forgot was also much different than the current time. My mom informed me that gym class was still separated by gender, boys didn’t take sewing, shorts at school was not allowed for girls, and girls didn’t take auto mechanics. Arbitrarily it appears, girls had to take foundry (shop, gardening, and woodworking), basically what is taught to boys and girls in current curriculum. My grandma jumped in and said she was shocked when my mother didn’t make my father’s lunch everyday like she had, and admitted she made her daughters clean every Saturday but not her son. I was beginning to see the distance that time and societal changes had created between the generations.

In the 1950s, it was largely assumed that the women’s place was in the home and they “didn’t talk about that stuff” (referring to social issues). But as easily as I forgot about the struggles of sexism in the 70s and 80s, my mother didn’t question the norms. We take for granted how far we have come but yet we stand in the same place as our predecessors still, unless we continue to discuss societal issues that need to change.

Abbey DeLisle, NSR Staff Writer, is a Junior Biology and Peace & Justice double major; The College of St. Scholastica, Duluth, MN, Class of 2018

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In three years we have published over 250 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. The North Star Reports is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica. Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, with generous support from The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Homemade Chicken Soup – Mom, Hmong Heritage, Minnesota, Home, – by Nancy H. Thao. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

Homemade Chicken Soup – Mom, Hmong Heritage, Minnesota, Home, – by Nancy H. Thao. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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After staying up in Duluth for three years, there is one homemade dish I will always be craving for at least once throughout the school year and that is chicken soup. I especially love it when there are herbs in my chicken soup! It is the most delicious dish when it is made with fresh chicken and herbs. In the picture, it is the chicken soup I made with my mother’s freshly picked herbs. If my mother had told me to go picked herbs from the garden for the soup, it would have been a tremendous failure on my part.

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When my mom was coming up to visit me, I constantly reminded her to bring me chicken and some herbs. She jokingly asked me, “Why? Are you pregnant?”. Why would she ask me this? Well, usually women who have just given birth will go on what is called “the chicken diet” in the Hmong culture. It is when the women will eat only herbal chicken soup with rice for every meal for a whole month. It has been a part of the Hmong cultural tradition for many centuries. I remember how a lot of my cousins were excited to go on this chicken diet when they had their first child, but after a while they could not wait until it was over. Based on what I have seen and heard, traditionally the women did not eat anything else beside the chicken soup. This mean no fruits, vegetables or junk food. The purpose of this chicken diet is to help cleanse the body and to rejuvenate it. At times, the chicken diet doesn’t always work for everyone. When my cousin had her child, she said the chicken diet was giving her heartburn, so instead she replaced the chicken with quail instead. Like the unexpected changes in our lifestyle, so does the traditions we carry on changes with the choices we make. My aunt told me that her sister would have one apple pie per day, but still stick to the herbal chicken diet. It is hard to preserve a tradition without changing it a little to accommodate to our likings.

Nancy serves as an editor for The North Star Reports.

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In three years we have published over 250 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. The North Star Reports is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica. Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, with generous support from The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Filed under Nancy H. Thao, North Star Student Editors, Professor Hong-Ming Liang

Hidden History – by Thomas Landgren. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

Hidden History – by Thomas Landgren. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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Growing up in a house that is over 110 years old there are always projects going on. When summer rolls around it seems like we have a new project going on every week. Ever since the Duluth flood we have been working on fixing leaks in our basement. This summer we went around the outside of our house and dug a trench to help stop some of the areas that leak whenever there is a light drizzle we seem to have a leak. We got to work right away this summer. We found many little treasure like coins, silverware, and other miscellaneous trinkets. There was one treasure we found that really peaked all of our interests. It was an old glass milk bottle that sported the words “Woodland Dairy”. The milk bottle was in remarkable condition for being buried in a pile of rocks and old pieces of metal. We set it aside to take a further look at it when we finished the project.

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When we were done we went to work cleaning it up and trying to get all of the mud and grime off so that we could see all of the words that made up the “Label”. After a couple of hours of research we learned something new about a very popular place in Duluth. Hartley Nature Park is a very popular place in Duluth with the bike trails, hiking trails, and creeks many people love to go up there and experience the nice little slice of outdoors that is still close to the city. Before this popular place was turned into a park the land was split up into many different farms. Researching we came across that the park was a pine plantation and 50 acres made up a small dairy farm that consisted of 80-100 cows. This farm was named Woodland Dairy farm. The pasture was cleared for the farm in the late 1800’s and in 1924 Woodland Dairy stopped their operation never stating the cause for the cease of operations. It’s always interesting to learn something new about a place that my family and I have visited over a hundred times. Just remember history is all around us.

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Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In three years we have published over 250 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. The North Star Reports is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica. Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, with generous support from The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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NSR concludes its 2015-2016 publication schedule. A Keynote Address and Reflections- by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR editors Bryce Gadke and Sara Tomlinson. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

NSR concludes its 2015-2016 publication schedule. A Keynote Address and Reflections – by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR editors Bryce Gadke and Sara Tomlinson. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

2016 spring coverage BMed

[The North Star Reports  global areas of coverage, 253 original articles, student written and edited,  in less than three years.]

Reflections on Farcebook after the keynote speech. The North Star Reports and the spirit of gratitude and service. “Everywhere i go, my elders travel by my side. i stayed up all night fussing over a keynote address for the Lake Superior Writing Summit. it is a great honor to be invited, and wonderful to share the excellent work of hundreds of The North Star Reports’ student writers and editors. as i fussed, it occurred to me that our main mission statement, “Those of us fortunate enough to receive an education, and to travel, have an ethical obligation to serve others” is tied to the lessons taught by my paternal grandmother. sold as a child bride, she worked since youth as a farm laborer, endured a lifetime of humiliation, toil and poverty — yet the thing she regretted the most, the thing that made her the saddest, is that she was not allowed to go to school and died in her 90s illiterate. ironically, or maybe not, she raised a family of scholars and teachers, and would spend weekend afternoons watching us read — always with that look of sadness and wonderment. a door left closed to her that she opened for her children and grandchildren. i think of this often, and share this story with my students, because on a day to day basis, there are plenty of things to complain about, to worry about. it is useful to remind one selves of how fortunate we are, to be grateful, and to remember the obligation to serve that comes with this good fortune. though gone for decades, not a day goes by that i do not think of these elders, my paternal and maternal grandparents, and the lessons they left for us, and how much more i have to do to honor them. when our elders travel with us, we are never alone.” Professor Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., publisher and editor in chief, The North Star Reports

North Star Reports Keynote 2016 Script plus FB 2.0 Professor Liang

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[From Lake Superior Summit on the Teaching of Writing and English as a Second Language 2016 Keynote Address. Photo courtesy of Professor Jamie White-Farnham.]

One of the most interesting takeaways I got from the entire speech occurred before the speech was actually presented. Professor Zelman (currently my professor for first year composition) said, “Hello Bryce, I’m glad you could come to the keynote speech. This is a great opportunity to see what English professors do regularly outside the classroom.” My first reaction to his comment was confusion because I was unaware of what the entire day entailed as a summit for writing was just getting underway. Secondly, I asked myself is Professor Liang giving a speech to a room full of English teachers and professors? After the speech I collected documents from the table at the entrance and read what some of the other speeches would be on the rest of the day and realized that having the speech for NSR as the keynote was fitting. During the speech I also realized a form of translation (how we discussed in class and you touched on in your speech) that was not evident to me when discussing in class. I take for granted my participation in NSR comments and annotating news articles because that has been steady for me not only this semester, but also first semester. Now I can fully realize the grander themes at play when I am commenting and annotating, also hopefully writing for, in the near future. I think that the general interest in the topic was high in the audience. Teachers and professors from around the area may develop more of an interest in the future for participation, which seemed evident by the intrigue level as I looked around the room during the speech and during the question portion at the end. Not only does going further in-depth on the everyday occurrences of NSR help by providing a general understanding for those that are unaware; it provides perspective for those involved in the process and allows development of a deeper understanding and appreciation in one’s own work and the always present hard work that you put forth for not only your students, but also students in the surrounding area. The students you don’t have that participate in one way or another is a number that I surely assume will grow in the near future. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of the NSR team.

Bryce Gadke, social media editor, The North Star Reports

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While listening to Professor Liang tell others about our organization, he offered us all an insight into why he is inspired to devote his time and energy to this cause. As many of us know, time is something we do not have very much of. Each day is slowly chipped away by both commitments and things we enjoy doing. If we are lucky enough, those two things overlap and we enjoy the majority of where our time goes. Listening to Professor Liang was a great reminder of why those of us involved in the North Star Reports do what we do. We want to create an inclusive learning environment while always keeping diversity in mind. His speech brought those values back to the forefront, and renewed my drive to be a positive influence for our readers.

Sara Tomlinson, social media editor, The North Star Reports

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[Photo courtesy of editor Gadke] For more information on the Lake Superior Writing Summit, see https://www.facebook.com/groups/1038859289462215/

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In five semesters we have published 200 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. We are sponsored by St. Scholastica’s Department of History and Politics and by the scholarly Middle Ground Journal: World History and Global Studies (http://theMiddleGroundJournal.org).

For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica.

Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Filed under Bryce Gadke, North Star Student Editors, Professor Hong-Ming Liang

The Matriarch and Traditions, Death and Change – by Cheyenne S. Lemm. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The Matriarch and Traditions, Death and Change – by Cheyenne S. Lemm. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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(A four generation picture. [left to right] My grandma holding my niece, my mom, and my sister.)

Like so many other families, the planning and celebration of holidays was dominated by my grandmother. She was in charge of deciding the menu, which didn’t often change much. She would delegate tasks to other family members and we would fall in line. She would decide when to begin eating and when the celebration was over. She was the glue that held different parts of the family together and ensured we got together a few times a year to eat well and enjoy each other’s company. For some of us she was a second mother. She seemed to always be making sure we got something for our birthday, Christmas, or Easter.

In her older age she relinquished the role of doing the large share of cooking for our gatherings. Some years it was a combination of my mom and older cousins, sometimes my sister was involved. In the last few years of her life, my sister and her fiancé moved in to help with her end of life care, this seemed to hand the task of cooking holiday meals at grandma’s house to my sister. This is where I come in, I was co-cook for a few of these meals and I always was home for Thanksgiving and Christmas. The job is easily adoptable because my grandma taught all of us to cook her recipes, we know them by heart and without measurement.

My grandma passed away last August, days after her 83rd birthday. Fortunately we were able to care for her until the very end. A loss of a loved one so dear to us left us reeling. Many firsts were now in the form of “first _____ without grandma.” We didn’t have the energy to hold a large family Thanksgiving. I didn’t celebrate my birthday, I wouldn’t have a wacky cake or brownies. I was a little apprehensive about Christmas and New Year’s, two holidays I had almost always spent in the company of my grandma. Christmas was a time to spend time around loved ones and eat an unreal amount of food, while New Year’s was always celebrated with a thimble full of brandy to bring good luck in the upcoming year.

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(Christmas cookies galore.)

Christmas was different. It wasn’t bad, but it was new. My mom, sister, and I made many batches of cookies on Christmas Eve. We decorated the tree, and this year it featured “Baby’s First Christmas” ornaments. Our Christmas was very much about us being together as a family, but also about my niece. Spending so much time watching her open her presents made my top 10 most memorable holiday memories list. New Years was fun and goofy, my sister and I had a few drinks to celebrate my new legal rights as a 21 year old, and we even took a family picture complete with cheap, sparkly crowns.

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([left to right] Me, my brother in law, my niece, and my sister on New Year’s Eve.)

The role of patriarch skipped a generation, as my sister now seems to be the one to take on the full role of organizing holiday gatherings, though I am always available to stir things and ‘baby sit’ a turkey or ham. I know that because my grandma is gone, our family gatherings will not be as large as they used to be; rather they seem to be more intimate, immediate family celebrations. As I look forward to Easter with my sister, brother in law, brothers, niece, and parents I am both nervous and excited. No longer will I see 20 plus cousins at Thanksgiving or Christmas, but I am grateful I have my parents, siblings, and my niece to make new traditions with.

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In five semesters we have published 200 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. We are sponsored by St. Scholastica’s Department of History and Politics and by the scholarly Middle Ground Journal: World History and Global Studies (http://theMiddleGroundJournal.org).

For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica.

Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Minnesota, USA – The Magic Bus, Family and World History – by Marin Ekstrom. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

Minnesota, USA – The Magic Bus, Family and World History – by Marin Ekstrom. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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The Ekstrom family has always been a bit of an anachronistic bunch. For example, my father adheres to an unspoken code of conduct that prohibits him from driving any car manufactured in the 21st century, my grandpa, sister, and I spent many hours playing Super Nintendo throughout the ‘90s and ‘00s (and even the ‘10s, now and then), and my family is the proud (and probably only) owner of The Brady Bunch:Greatest Hits CD.

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Our everyday attire back in the day. We’ve tried to update it just a little bit since then.

Perhaps the pinnacle of our retro reverence is the “Magic Bus”, our 1976 Dodge Cruise Air motor home. We received the bus in the fall of 1999, as the previous millennium was drawing to a close. This could be interpreted as a symbolic gesture of holding on to the past as our world surged ahead into the dawn of a new era. Stepping into the bus instantly transports you back in time to the psychedelic and idiosyncratic world of the 1970s, as it features all of the stereotypical hallmarks of Seventies aesthetic culture. Its marvelous features include shag carpeting, wood paneling, and generous sprinklings of a distinctive puke green hue that seems to have been highly revered during that decade.

I distinctly remember stepping into the bus for the first time and viewing it with an odd mixture of wonder and terror (my sister Paige shared my sentiment). My parents spent their formative years in the 1970s, and thus when they stepped into the Bus, it conjured a flood of nostalgic childhood memories; thus, they fell in love with it right away. Eventually, my sister’s and my initial fear of the bus melted away and we became endeared to it. It quickly became our chief means of transportation to exciting summer adventures, including trips to our grandparents’ cabin, beach bonanzas, hangouts at the Hinckley RV park (complete with swimming for the kids and gambling for the grandparents) and even a rollicking’ 8th birthday party in Duluth. We associated the bus not only with the Seventies, but also with the warm weather and liberation from scholastic studies that came with summer vacation. Thus, as our calendars inched closer to summer, the whole family would anxiously await for the bus to take us on our next summer road trip.

Unfortunately, the bus’ momentum, like disco fever and the popularity of polyester pants, could not last forever. After having a peak run in the early 2000s, tire troubles and high gas prices heralded the end of the Bus’s travelling days by 2005. Today it stands outside by our garage and serves as a makeshift hotel on the (RARE) occasions that we have an overflow of guests staying the night at our house. Even in its retirement, the bus continues to stand proud and tall, basking in the glory days that created so many summer and travel memories for the Ekstrom family.

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Despite the unlikelihood that we will ever travel via the Magic Bus again, we nevertheless treasure the memories of driving down roads while jamming to Fleetwood Mac, the Beach Boys, and other retro superstars on our impressive collection of 8-Tracks. When we first got the Bus , I viewed it as a time capsule that granted a glimpse into the wild and wonderful world of the Seventies and my parents’ wonder years. Now that I am older, and as I continue on in my journey towards full-fledged adulthood, I have come to appreciate how large of a role the Bus played in my Nineties and Noughties childhood. It’s not everyday that you see a vintage RV parked by someone’s house– but then again, the Ekstroms have never really been a normal bunch, and we all admire the contribution that this mobile museum gave to our collective family memory.

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Marin Ekstrom serves as Senior Editor for The North Star Reports.

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In five semesters we have published 200 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. We are sponsored by St. Scholastica’s Department of History and Politics and by the scholarly Middle Ground Journal: World History and Global Studies (http://theMiddleGroundJournal.org).

For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica.

Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Filed under Marin Ekstrom, North Star Student Editors, Professor Hong-Ming Liang

Food, Global Connections, Family History – by Nick Lozinski. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

Food, Global Connections, Family History – by Nick Lozinski. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports

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Living in the Twin Cities offers a wide variety of different opportunities. There are several colleges and universities to further your education and a large concentration of Fortune 500 companies that call the Twin Cities home. One of the most distinct opportunities in the Twin Cities is the opportunity to learn about a different culture while still in the comfort of your own home town. The Twin City area is home to several diverse communities from around the world, and these communities each add to the area as a whole.

One of the ways these communities have shaped their neighborhoods is through the wide selections of food. In the neighborhood I live in, there is a Turkish restaurant, several Korean restaurants, and an Ethiopian restaurant. Food is often an important aspect of someone’s culture. Not just what they eat, but how they eat it.

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Within my family, there are distinct cultural differences. My dad’s side has very traditional American food. The way we go about dinners is also very traditionally American. With everyone sitting around the table with the food all in the middle. On my mom’s side, our Slovenian heritage is quite prominent. The food we have is usually traditional Slovenian meals. There’s always a wide choice of smoked meats, struklji, potica, and some form of homemade alcohol. Not only is the selection of food a product of our heritage, but so is the way we hold family dinners. The food is simply placed on the counter and people grab a plate and find somewhere to sit. Since we have a large family seats aren’t limited to the table, but wherever there is an open seat.

When looking at meals it’s important to not only look at the food being served, but the rituals that go along with it. Whereas my family looks at dinner as very informal and relaxed, many cultures view meal time as formal and have strict rules and guidelines they follow while eating. This past summer I travelled to Spain and lived with a Spanish family, and they viewed meals as more formal. Everyday they ate at the same time and their meal consisted of eating bread before the meal, followed by the meal for the day, and then ended with some type of fruit. This was a stark contrast to my family’s informal approach to dinner.

Experiencing how different cultures view meals is a window into that culture. You don’t need to buy a plane ticket to experience and learn about a different culture when you can go down the road to get a glimpse during dinner.

Nick Lozinski is a student at Hamline University, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA.

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In five semesters we have published 200 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. We are sponsored by St. Scholastica’s Department of History and Politics and by the scholarly Middle Ground Journal: World History and Global Studies (http://theMiddleGroundJournal.org).

For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm

Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica.

Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu

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Filed under North Star Student Editors, Professor Hong-Ming Liang