Media Consumption +++ Infotainment +++ Fake News +++ Absolutely Intercultural 290 +++

Hello dear listenersand welcome to show 290 of our podcast“Absolutely Intercultural”. Today’s topic is all about the impact of our media consumption. I am Laurent Borgmann, your host, and as I am over sixty years old, I feel obliged to start with a bit of media nostalgia. Back in the good old times, yes, in fact,more than 50 years ago, every house in our street got a newspaper on their doorstep before 5 am every morning. Subscription was the rule. People would read it during breakfast, and this seemed as essential as the first cup of coffee in the day. In our city, we had two papers to pick from, but honestly, although one was slightly more left and the other slightly more right-wing they were like twins separated at birth. They sometimes even shamelessly used the same pictures on the front page. At school I learned that they were actually produced in the same printing house. And the effect? In the 1960s, when you caught up with the neighbours over the garden fence, it was like a big gossip party. All neighbours knew the same news stories and were ready to outraged by the same scandals. The update in the evenings was also the same–at 8 o’clock, families all over Germany tuned in for the TV news, and you could bet most people were watching the same news show–Die Tagesschau! Of course,even then people had different takes on the same news, depending on their political affiliations or demographic backgrounds. But we could all still join the chat because everyone had the same input. Those were the good old days.

absolutely informed

In our opening story, “absolutely informed”, we’ll tune in to Emanuel from Germany. As a young adult in Germany, Emanuel is interested in what is happening around the world. However, finding out which news reports can be trusted and which are only an opinion for the bubble they are meant for, seems a constant challenge for us nowadays.

absolutely independent

In our next part “absolutely independent”, we’ll hear from Rozana, who is from Albania and now she works as a guest lecturer in Germany. Rozana shares with us her concerns about potential government influence on the contents of the news.

absolutely positive

In our final story, “absolutely positive”, we’ll hear from Krishna, originally from India and now an exchange student in Germany. Krishna does not like to follow the news as he prefers to keep his surroundings positive.

Now, we’re curious about your own experiences with Media, are you a keen news reader like Emanuel or do you keep negative information out of your life like Krishna? Are you good at detecting fake news and do you ever report any?

Share your story with us via comment or email, and you can feature in one of our upcoming shows. For more information and previous episodes, visit our website at absolutely-intercultural.com. If you enjoyed the show, please give us a thumbs-up on Facebook.

And did you know we’re also on iTunes and Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe for free, leave a rating, and drop a comment there. 

Our next show, hosted by Anne Fox in Denmark, will be out on 2 February.

Until then – look out for fake news!  and

Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell! 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Mariam Bilge, Sebastian Berg

 

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Hidden history +++ Our Story +++ Absolutely Intercultural 289 +++

Fatima Al-Fihri
Fatima Al-Fihri – founder of the first university in the world in Morocco

Welcome to show 289 of Absolutely Intercultural.

Did you know that the richest man who ever lived was an African from Mali in the fourteenth century whose wealth exceeded that of Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates put together?

Did you know that the first university in the world was not in Milan, Italy but in Morocco started by a female refugee, Fatima Al-Fihri?

In this show we’re going to find out more about a publishing company called Our Story aimed at young children and their teachers, and why this might help intercultural understanding.

My name’s Anne Fox and I’m based in Denmark and for this show I’m working with Mariam in Germany.

In this show we are going to meet Fahad Siddiqui, a Londoner, living in Brazil, who thinks that we should all know more these people who have faded from history.

absolutely historical

Let’s go absolutely historical and meet Fahad Siddiqui who created the Our Story company to share these stories with children.

absolutely multicultural

As well as being interesting in their own right, one of the aims of the Our Story materials is to introduce children to different cultures so let’s find out more about that and go absolutely multicultural with Mariam.

absolutely charitable

One of the features of the Our Story books is that every time you buy one of the books, the company makes a donation to the charity, CAMFED, which supports the education of girls in a selection of African countries. Let’s go absolutely charitable to find out how and why.

I loved finding out more about the many facets of the Our Story books and I know that our conversation left Mariam thinking hard about her home country of Georgia and whether there would be a candidate for one of the books from her cultural history. And maybe you know of one from your culture too?

Share your story with us via comment or email, and you might feature in one of our upcoming shows. For more information and previous episodes, visit our website at absolutely-intercultural.com. And if you enjoyed the show, please like us on Facebook too. 

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment.

Our next show will be coming to you on 5th January from Laurent Borgmann in Germany

Until then – stay tuned!

The host of this show is: Anne Fox

Co-host: Mariam Bilge

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Traffic Culture +++ Driving Habits +++ Cultural Prejudice +++ Absolutely Intercultural 288 +++

Hello dear listeners and welcome to show 288 of our podcast “Absolutely Intercultural”. Today’s topic is all about traffic. I’m Laurent Borgmann, and my wife and I, both in our early sixties, made a significant decision when we hit 40 – we decided to get rid of both our cars. Now, this might come as a surprise, given that we’re from Germany, a country renowned for its love of cars. On top of that, we both have 60-kilometer commutes in different directions. But the transition from private vehicles to public transport turned out to be remarkably smooth for us. For the last twenty years we have  happily immersed ourselves in books or worked on our laptops during our daily commutes.

absolutely racing

In our opening story “absolutely racing”, we’ll tune in to Jung from South Korea. As an external observer in Germany, Jung offers us a unique perspective on traffic culture, both, as a pedestrian and as a driver. She observes, that the typically patient and disciplined Germans, who readily give to pedestrians in the city, somehow transform into impatient, speedy daredevils when they hit the Autobahn – Germany’s iconic high-speed highway.

absolutely honking

In our next part “absolutely honking”, we’ll hear from Rindi, originally from Albania, now living in Germany. Rindi says he can spot young Albanian drivers in Germany just by the sounds of their cars on the streets.

absolutely discriminated

In our final story “absolutely discriminated”, we’ll hear from Natalia, originally from Ukraine and now a resident of Germany for the past four years. Natalia opens up about the cultural prejudices she encounters in car-centric Germany as a woman who doesn’t drive.

Now, we´re curious about your experiences with traffic culture. Are you a pedestrian, driver, or passenger? Are you patient or always in a hurry? We´d especially love to hear from those who want to challenge and change the existing traffic culture. Get in touch, feel free to share your unique story with us here on the podcast.

Share your story with us via comment or email, and you might feature in one of our upcoming shows. For more information and previous episodes, visit our website at absolutely-intercultural.com. If you enjoyed the show, please give us a thumbs-up on Facebook.

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment. 

Our next show will be coming to you on 1 December from Anne Fox in Denmark

Until then – drive, ride, or walk safely!  and

Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell!

 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Mariam Bilge, Sebastian Berg

 

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Why Denmark? +++ Iceland +++ South Africa +++ Masters +++ PhD +++ Absolutely Intercultural 287 +++

Peter & Úlfar in Iceland

Welcome to Show 287 of Absolutely Intercultural coming to you from Denmark. My name’s Anne Fox and Denmark is where I have lived for almost thirty years. It is a small country of nearly 6 million people which has 8 universities. Compared to Germany’s 380, or the USA’s seemingly too many to count, but let’s settle for over 4000, eight Danish universities seems like a very small pool to choose from. So why would anybody come to Denmark for their university studies? This is what we’re going to find out in this show. We will be talking to Peter from South Africa who has a complex family history that is reflected in the languages spoken at home and Úlfar from Iceland who’s noticed something about Denmark.

absolutely uncertain

In our first segment, “absolutely uncertain”, let’s find out how Peter came to Denmark, to study in Danish, after being brought up in South Africa and having done his schooling in German.

absolutely engineered

In our next segment, “absolutely engineered”, let’s hear from Úlfar, an Icelander who had limited options for his Masters back in Iceland and chose Denmark.

So maybe small is beautiful after all. Family history and colonial ties seem to count greatly in addition to any global ranking that Danish universities may also have. Just for information DTU is number 165 globally or, when we’re talking specifically engineering and technology, 3rd after Stanford and MIT, while Copenhagen is 107 globally. And Iceland has seven universities which is only one less than Denmark, but it’s something to do with size! What about you? Did you ever consider studying in a small country like Denmark? Get in touch, feel free to share your unique story with us here on the podcast.

Write a comment or mail us, we could do a follow-up interview with you in one of our next shows. On our web page, absolutely-intercultural.com, you can get more information about this show and previous episodes, and you can leave comments. And if you enjoyed the show, please like us on Facebook too.   

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment. 

Our next show will be coming to you on 3 November from Laurent Borgmann in Germany.

Until then, stay tuned!

The host of this show is: Anne Fox

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Privilege +++ Being aware of privileges +++ Artificial privileges +++ Absolutely Intercultural 286 +++

Hello dear listeners and welcome to show 286 of our podcast “Absolutely Intercultural”. Today, we are going to talk about “Privilege”, about having different starting points in life, about having unearned advantages because of different aspects of our identity. It is worth looking at how people perceive this controversial topic in their everyday lives. From our guests, we will learn that privilege affects lives very differently, from gender biases to food struggles, and how people sometimes do NOT want to be viewed as privileged as it undermines their achievements. We will also hear what motivates people to break out of the sphere of their privileges and help those who are less fortunate than us. What are the privileges that we should be aware of? Are privileges always harmful?

absolutely undervalued

In our first story, “absolutely undervalued”, we will listen to Tea from Albania who is currently living and working in Germany as a guest lecturer. Tea tells us which difficulties she faced some years ago in Albania, when she was not taken seriously by her colleagues simply because of her age and her gender.

absolutely blind

In our second story, “absolutely blind”, we will listen to Tushar who was born in India but moved to Germany in his early childhood. During the interview he mentions how in his home country young kids struggle with basic human needs in everyday lives and how he now feels rather privileged that he does not have to worry about those issues in Germany.

absolutely unfair

In our last story “absolutely unfair”, we will listen to Yuliia from Ukraine who has been studying in Germany for her exchange year. She tells us how she notices that privileges that she has because she is from Ukraine, gradually make her feel uncomfortable.

What about you? Are there any artificial privileges that you would actually introduce in your country to make it a better place? In fact, we would also love to hear from people who reject the whole idea of affirmative action! Get in touch, feel free to share your unique story with us here on the podcast.

Write a comment or mail us, we could do a follow-up interview with you in one of our next shows. On our web page, absolutely-intercultural.com, you can get more information about this show and previous episodes, and you can leave comments. And if you enjoyed the show, please like us on Facebook too.   

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment. 

Our next show will be coming to you on 6 October from Anne Fox in Denmark

Until then – get a little worried about the privileges that you have– or not!  and

Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell!

 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Mariam Bilge, Sebastian Berg

 

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Ecological Grandparents +++ Woke or Wise +++ Grandma’s sustainability lessons +++ Absolutely Intercutural 284 +++

Hello dear listeners and welcome to show 284 of our podcast “Absolutely Intercultural”. Today we explore the cultural dynamics between generations and their impact on our environment. What is the difference between the sustainability practices of our elders and the younger generations. Two different cultures “woke” vs. “wise”? This cultural distinction raises the question – can we connect the different cultures between the old and the young and combine the collective knowledge and experience to combat climate change? In this episode, we explore (and promote) the role of intergenerational knowledge exchange in creating a sustainable future. Join us as we dive into Grandparents’ sustainability lessons for their eco-activist grandchildren.

absolutely inspired

In our first category, “absolutely inspired”, we will listen to Mariam from Georgia who admires her grandma.  Mariam is not so proud of her own carbon footprint but she thinks that grandma is “the best environmentalist ever”!

absolutely vegetarian

In our second category “absolutely vegetarian”, we will hear from Nils in Germany whose grandparents are rather worried that their grandson is a vegetarian and they are convinced that he is not nourished well without meat. 

absolutely aware

Finally, in our last category “absolutely aware”, we listen to Anjana from India, where thinking or talking about sustainability has not been a high priority as it is for example in Germany. Paradoxically, her grandparents might not be aware of “sustainability” itself, but they do know how to ration and be mindful of natural resources in their home.

What about YOU? What did your grandparents teach you? Or what can you teach them? Maybe you have had an eye-opening experience on your own which raised your awareness for sustainability? Get in touch, and feel free to share your unique story with us here on this podcast.

Please write a comment or mail us, we could do a follow-up interview with you in one of our next shows. On our web page, www.absolutely-intercultural.com, you can get more information about this show and previous episodes and you can leave comments. And if you enjoyed the show, please like us on Facebook too. 

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment. 

Our next show will be coming to you on 7th of July!

Until then – learn from your grandma and make her learn from you as well!   – and Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell! 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Teona Tepnadze, Sonam Tashi

 

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Gender Roles +++ Gender Equality +++ Men & Women in the 21st Century +++ Absolutely Intercultural 283

Hello and welcome to show 283 of our podcast “Absolutely Intercultural”. Today, we are going to talk about the different cultures men and women live in – we are looking at different Gender Roles. No matter how progressive our parents think they are, all of us are confronted with gender roles from a very young age. As kids, in our still binary world we learn the concepts of “girls” and “boys” from our parents, grandparents, kindergarden and school teachers, etc. Later, these assumptions develop into a set of gender roles of “men” and “women” that we bring to our adulthood, our relationships, our workplace, and again pass on to our own kids. Our international guests, today, grew up in the United States, the Czech Republic and in Germany and share their own personal experiences and views regarding gender roles. What worries young men and women nowadays? What kind of new challenges do they face? How do they deal with it? 

absolutely manly

In our first category, “absolutely manly”, we will listen to Jacob from the United States. Jacob tells us that the attitude “A real man does not cry” is still very present in everyday American male culture and even school boys will do anything not to be seen crying in front of other school children.

absolutely divided

In our second category “absolutely divided”, we will hear from Teresa. She believes that everyone, man or a woman, should be free to make their life choices independently of cultural gender expectations. However, Teresa also shares her worries, that more and more difficult choices between mother and career can put women under even more pressure.

absolutely unfair

Finally, in our last category “absolutely unfair”, we listen to Sebastian from Germany. Even though we have managed to achieve more gender equality in the 21 century, Sebastian noticed that some women still look for traditional men as a partner and some men, prefer to to be in a relationship with a traditional woman. And why shouldn’t they? However, Sebastian observes that, quite unfairly, it still seems acceptable for a woman to expect a man to pay for her dinner but it will be considered sexist of a man to expect a woman to cook for him.

What about you? What is your opinion about male and female cultures? Do you perhaps find this binary thinking hopelessly “old school” and 1980ies? Do you have examples where gender roles are determined by the culture of the family, the community or the country you grew up in? Have you personally ever been stereotyped because of your gender? How did you feel about that? Write a comment or mail us, we could do a follow-up interview with you in one of our next shows. On our web page, absolutely-intercultural.com, you can get more information about this show and previous episodes, and you can also leave comments. And if you enjoyed this show, please like us on Facebook too. 

Please write a comment or mail us, we could do a follow-up interview with you in one of our next shows. On our web page, www.absolutely-intercultural.com, you can get more information about this show and previous episodes and you can leave comments. And if you enjoyed the show, please like us on Facebook too. 

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment. 

Our next show will be coming to you on 5th of May.

Until then – embrace gender equality by appreciating each other’s work – and Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell! 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Sonam Tashi, Teona Tepnadze

 

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Self-Imrpovement Culture +++ Personal Goals +++ Social Expectations +++ Absolutely Intercultural 282 +++

Hello dear listeners and welcome to show 282 of our podcast “Absolutely Intercultural”. Today, we are going to talk about the culture of self-improvement.
One way or another, most of us strive to be better than we really are. We would love to look better, be more successful and feel better than we really are. Many of us constantly try to improve ourselves our working styles and our lives: taking care of our health, searching for our purpose in life, trying to make a difference in the World, developing our skills for the workplace, and working on our private relationships.
Let us assume that self-improvement is the way forward to feeling better about ourselves. But then, why do we feel so exhausted, trying to be perfect everywhere and all the time?

absolutely determined

In our first category, absolutely determined”, we will listen to Teona from Georgia. As she is clearly a member of the self-improvement culture, Teona already knows what she wants to have achieved in 10 years time and has identified which extra skills the “future-Teona” needs to be a member of this self-improvement culture.

absolutely risky

In our second category, absolutely risky”, we will hear from Beyza. She shares that in order to improve herself, she had to leave her cultural comfort zone and take the big risk of leaving her home country, Turkey.

absolutely aware

Finally, in our last category, “absolutely aware”, we listen to Johnson from China. He tells us how the Chinese self-improvement culture encourages a strong awareness of losing face in front of others and to keep up one’s dignity. In some cases, this fear of losing face may be stronger than the fear of death.

What about you? Do you have a truly personal approach to setting your own improvement goals? What do you think about the self-improvement culture? Is it the next fashion after the fitness boom? Do you think it can really make us happy as individuals? Get in touch, and feel free to share your unique story with us here on this podcast.

Our next show will be coming to you on the 3 of March.

Until then – check your personal goals against those of the cultural bubble you live in! – and

Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell! 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Kyeong Jin Kim, Faisal Faisal

 

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Sports Culture +++ Why we do sports +++ Influence of sports +++ Absolutely Intercultural 281 +++

Hello and welcome to show 281 of our podcast “Absolutely Intercultural”. Today, we are going to shed some light on the “Sports Culture” which is a non geographically determined culture that people from all over the world can be part of . From our international guests, we will hear what can motivate or inspire people to do sports. What are the values and beliefs that sports people share? Is it all about physical health and strength? Or is it actually about mental well-being? Some sports people go for the satisfaction produced by accomplishment. Some go for the collectivist idea of team spirit and equality and inclusion, working against discrimination based on gender or race.

Perhaps, the running and sweating is only a side issue and the sports culture is really about cultural values such as team spirit, resilience and shared achievement which would mean that sports have a much greater impact on us and on society than we may think.

absolutely impactful

In our first story “absolutely impactful”, we will listen to Brian from India. Brian shares with us how playing sports can bring amazing outcomes to people, especially when we look at mental health. He says, doing sports makes him feel at his best.             

absolutely competetive

In our second story, “absolutely competitive”, we will listen to Steph from Canada. Steph shares with us how she has played hockey for years and how it can be hard being the only woman on the field. No matter what, Steph never gave up, and biting comments from male players even encouraged her to become more competitive.

absolutely productive

In our third story, “absolutely productive”, we will listen to Albano from Italy. Albano tells us how he does sports to redirect his negative energy to something productive and manages to get both toxins and negative ideas out of his body and mind.

What about you? Are you part of this sports culture? What or who inspired you to start and what keeps you motivated? What benefits does it have in your professional and personal life? Do you believe sports may be able to solve problems that our politicians cannot? Or perhaps you are more critical of this culture? We would love to hear more perspectives on this topic. Get in touch, and feel free to share your unique story with us here on this podcast.

Write a comment or mail us, we could do a follow-up interview with you in one of our next shows. On our web page, absolutely-intercultural.com, you can get more information about this show and previous episodes, and you can leave comments. And if you enjoyed the show, please like us on Facebook too.   

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment. 

Our next show will be coming to you on 6 January.

Until then – think about what the sports culture means to you! –

Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell! 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Kim Kyeongjin, Faisal  Faisal

 

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Political Correctness +++ Woke Culture +++ Being PC +++ Absolutely Intercultural 280 +++

Hello and welcome to show 280 of our podcast “Absolutely Intercultural”. Today, we are going to talk about the culture of “Political Correctness”. Since the 1980s many people in public life have used politically correct language either to avoid discrimination and to treat others respectfully or because they are worried about being judged by more politically correct people. The original idea of the concept was to try to make the world less racist, less homophobic, less sexist, in short into a better place. But will this cultural change really ever achieve worldwide equality of genders and races? Or will the PC language only change the way we speak but not the way we really think or behave? Many critics see pc language as censorship and draw parallels to George Orwell’s utopian idea of “Newspeak” in his novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, where the totalitarian regime decides to reduce the language to the point that ideas which are not desirable can no longer be expressed.

From our guests, we will hear how they see and experience this new culture of political correctness, which is now gaining more and more influence on our vocabulary, our minds, and our lives.

absolutely filtered

In our first story, “absolutely filtered”, we will listen to Faisal from Iraq who is currently studying in Germany. Faisal tells us that political correctness in Europe makes him feel a little uncomfortable in communication. He compares the PC and woke languages to having a filter on everyone’s mouth.

absolutely responsible

In our second story, “absolutely responsible”, we will listen to Waqar from Pakistan who owns a plastic free shop in Germany – “Unpacked Remagen“. With his business, tries to introduce his customers to environmental awareness, such as climate change. For Waqar, political correctness concerns more than just the language we use. It is about taking responsibility and real action.

absolutely open-minded

In our last story “absolutely open-minded”, we will listen to Niklas from Germany. For Niklas, being politically correct depends on the situation he is in. At work, he will be politically correct. However, when hanging out with his friends, Niklas can allow himself to make some politically incorrect jokes to bond with them.

What about you? What do you think about political correctness? Does it come to you easily to be politically correct in every aspect of your life? And do you think with the help PC language we can really reduce discrimination and reach equality? Or do you struggle with the new language as if it censored and restricted your expression? Get in touch with us, and feel free to share your unique story with us here on this podcast.

Write a comment or mail us, we could do a follow-up interview with you in one of our next shows. On our web page, absolutely-intercultural.com, you can get more information about this show and previous episodes, and you can leave comments. And if you enjoyed the show, please like us on Facebook too.   

By the way, did you know we are also on iTunes or Apple Podcasts? You can subscribe to us there for free and give us a rating and a comment. 

Our next show will be coming to you on 2 December.

Until then – rethink your own political correctness –

Bleiben Sie absolut interkulturell! 

The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Natalia Obikhod

Assistant Editors: Kim Kyeongjin, Faisal  Faisal

 

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