Dystopias

Enora Haugmard France

Dystopia is a variant of science fiction. Unlike utopias, which take place on happy locations, in most cases, dystopias depict nightmarish worlds because literally ‘dystopia’ means ‘not-good place’. Authors, according to their centuries, describe the world they imagine for the future.
So, in what way is the writing of dystopias revealing the fears and worries present for the future world?

There is a the translation of the scientific progress in dystopias. Then, dystopias evoke the fear of lack of freedom and can talk about the fear of the technological advances.

In first part, we can talk about Brave New World, Aldous Huxley’s dystopia based on a scientific and eugenic society. In his novel, we understand thatImage result for brave new world basically all babies who are born are automatically placed in classes that define which statue they have in their society. For example, Alpha is the best one. They are programmed to be tall, beautiful, and clever. Then, Bêtas also formed an intelligent class. Gammas, Deltas and Epsilon are the middle and low classes.

The chapter 2 takes place in a hospital where the Director forms Bêtas. There is a loud speaker which makes a speech “Alpha children wear grey. They work much harder than we do, we are much better than the Gammas and Deltas”. These conditioning behaviors include the acceptance of social classes. By listening to these words when you are a child we will always remember who you are in the society.

Therefore, we noticed how social conditioning is violent. Moreover, in Huxley’s dystopia, babies are conditioned by electric shocks to learn hatred of beautiful things. This extract depicts a nightmarish world, controlled by the power of words, and the violence.

 

Suzanne Collins wrote The Hunger Games in 2008. In the beginning of the book, we discover a world separated by a fence in the 12th District. Image result for hunger games collinsThe first Chapter introduces Katniss, the main character, she lives in the 12th district and she likes hunting in the forest even if it’s forbidden. Panem, the 12th, is the poorest district. In the beginning, the location is described as somewhere “gray” and “dusty”. Panem is a place where the government had taken everything.

Moreover, people such as Katniss must obey to superior authority, in this case, the Capitol, the only one place that can be rich. To enforce the authority, a kind of military exists  : the Peacekeepers. But to maintain terror, the Hunger Games also exists . A game which aims to choose two people of each district and to make them fight until the death. So, people are always submissive and therefore without liberty. This world would be the nightmare of the totalitarianism.

 

The futuristic world involve technological progress. Richard K Morgan’s novel, called Altered Carbon, set in a future in which life is facilitatedImage result for altered carbon richard k morgan by transferring consciousnesses between bodies. It follows the attempt of Takeshi Kovacs, a soldier turned private investigator. But when Takeshi is resleeved, it’s not in his own body. In his novel, a rich man named Laurens Bancroft has, apparently, committed suicide. When he is resleeved and his destroyed stack restored, its 48-hours back-up schedule means he has no memories of the previous two days. Convinced he was murdered, Bancroft hires Takeshi Kovacs to investigate. He is forced to obey because the people who are called Meths, people like Bancroft, are wealthy and are among other things, able to acquire replacement bodies forever.

So, they are eternal while people are dying because they don’t have money to restore their stacks. Therefore, people are also hierachied and submissive to powerful people but also dominated by technology and become kinds of robots.

Dystopias translate the fears and worries present about our future world. The fear that science will become more important than human beings, that it categorized people and gives too much power to some people. We are afraid that perfection will become too important and threaten the uniqueness. Then, it also translates the fear of losing our liberty, the fear that the government will take us over. And finally we develop a fear of technological progress that could destroy our humanity and dominate the human world. In each case, everything seems irreversible. This may be a warning from the authors.

In my opinion, Dystopias are a good way to make people aware about the most likely future problems that hovers over the world. Then, it also permits the creation of a brief idea of what our world could be like in some centuries.

 

Halloween in Santa Barbara

Mohammed Alnasser, Saudi Arabia

First of all, this is the first time I have visited the U.S.A. and of course it is a nice fun and good experience at the same time. During my stay there were beautiful events and festivals including Halloween.

This was an interesting event for me because it was the first time I have been involved in this event and it was a beautiful experience in my life.

I participated in this celebration with the wonderful EF Institutes and it was a wonderful celebration. My costume was about a character in the circus. We were in competition with most of the students at the institute for the best costume and for the first time I won and I took fifth place.

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A New “Lifestyle”



Federica Capuzzoni, Italy

The Zen philosophy is more than a simple religion, it is a life style near Buddhism. The “Zen” is a philosophy of life that helps the individual to find happiness and serenity, and it helps to remove a negative thoughts and stressful things. To understand, and to catch the real meaning of this religion, it is not necessary to become a real follower of it, but it is only necessary to open our hearts and live with broad minds.

The most important teachings of Zen are:

  1. the JOY IS NOW: Often people concentrate more about their past actions or think about a future instead to live in the moment but, it’s wrong. We need to learn to live every moment of our lives and to appreciate every thing. For the Zen’s philosophy the individual’s joy depends only on himself and how he lives in the world. So how can we be happy ? We need to remove negative thinking. We should’t get swayed by external factors and also every human has the conditions to be happy.bbb
  2.  LIVE WITH A BROAD MIND: Living with serenity without any stress means living with a broad mind. We need to always stay ready for the changes that happen in our lives, because if you have a narrow mind this prevents you from understanding what is happening in your life. If we want to see life from another view, you must forget the rules that the society requires of us. To understand better what is meaning we can use this quotes:

“In the sky there is no difference between east or west, but the people create this difference in their minds and after they start to think that it is real.”

3.     PAIN IS UNAVOIDABLE, SUFFERING IS OPTIONAL: People can only be hurt by what they decide to give importance to, so that means that is possible to avoid the suffering in vain; in fact, if you decide to emotionally break away, you can see the problem from another point of view. This teaching takes time and diligence, but it is  important for your life.ddddd

Simplicity in the Buddhist lifestyle is essential. Simplicity as way of life focuses attention on the really important thing. How can you practice simplicity?

First, you must examine your life to see what stressful habits clutter your life. Are you running around too much? Are you trying to do too many things at once? Once you ask yourself these types of questions and make an inventory of habits, then you can change to simplify your life. Simplicity is the way of life that helps us put more attention on what is happening in our lives every day, and helps us to search all the positive things that are happening every day.

After this you must realize that you have choices. Every person is the writer of his/her own life. You are 100 percent unique in your own special way. You have the right to spend your life doing the things you love to do, and experiencing things that bring you massive joy.You-have-a-choice

 

The trick is to enjoy your life. Don’t waste away your days, waiting for better ones ahead. You must give the possibility of every day to be the best day of your life.

Marjorie Pay Hinckley

When the day is finished and you are in your bed, close your eyes and think about the whole day and search all the “happy moments” and reflect about all the good things that  happened. It helps you to appreciate your life more! 

STREET ART: VANDALISM OR ART?

Ilaria Tedeschi, Italy

Post graffiti, murals, frescoes or Urban Art, the Universe of the Street Art is known under many appellations. But where does it come from ? What were the changes ?

“Is it art?”

A question sometimes said and heard in museums, galleries, movie theaters, concert arenas, any place of creation. One such place is also the street, where the spectators often seem to wonder: “Is graffiti art or vandalism ?”
As a response to modernism and social segregation, graffiti became the means of communication and identity for young people in New York City in the 1970s.
Street art is visual art created in public locations, usually unsanctioned artwork executed outside of the context of traditional art venues.
Some of the earliest expressions of street art were certainly the graffiti which started showing up on the sides of train cars and walls. This was the work of gangs in the 1920s and 1930s New York.
The impact of this subversive culture was extraordinarily felt in the 1970s and 1980s.
These decades were a significant turning point in the history of street art – it was a time when young people, by responding to their socio-political environment, started creating a movement, taking the ‘battle for meaning’ into their own hands.
Soon, this subcultural phenomenon gained the attention and respect in the ‘grown-up’ world. It had taken a form of true artistic expression.
One of the most important name of the street art is Martha Cooper.

Martha-Cooper-Untitled-Ghetto-4-LifeOne of the most important photo of Martha Cooper.

Although still subversive, and in its large part an illegal movement, through art enthusiasts and professionals, street art earned its place in the contemporary art world.
It is a marvelous art form in its own right and it is amazing to follow the evolution and diversity of street art in the 21st century.
Street art gave birth to artists who create breathtaking murals, and those who have incorporated video art and other performative aspects to creative work ‘on the streets’.
Omnipresent globally, it has evolved into a complex art form encompassing various practices. The World Atlas of Street Art and Graffiti is a survey of international art scene and brings together the world’s most influential urban artists and their work.

Street art is a way to communicate with other people, to share your creativity, your ideas, your thoughts and a way express yourself, how you really are.

Some of the most important street artists are:

BANSKY

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KEITH HARING

Keith-Haring-Crack-is-Wack-Mural-Restored.-Photo-Jim-Kieman-via-animal-new-york-Haring’s bold cartoon figures are a visual staple of the 1980s New York art scene and have come to appear on everything from T-shirts to skateboards.

 

Jean-Michel Basquiat

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Before Basquiat was one of the most popular artists in New York City, hanging out with the likes of Andy Warhol and Keith Haring, he was a young, homeless runaway who took up graffiti under the name “SAMO.” In his short life, Basquiat worked his way up the rungs of the art world, landing himself in top galleries yet continuing to put work on the street.

Street art is a way to communicate with other people, to share your creativity, your ideas, your thoughts and a way express yourself, how you really are.16426886448_003b55ce09_b

 

Does the Street Art have a place in Galleries ?

Post graffiti, murals, frescoes or Urban Art, the Universe of the Street Art is known under many appelations. But where does it come from ? What were the changes ?

These different kind of appellations have evolved over time and with the artists in this movement. At the beginning the Street Art was known as “Graffiti” which was an act of vandalism during the 1960/1980s decades. 2018-06-24 11.52.31Nowadays, this form of Art which is exhibited in the international galleries, festivals or fairs like the “Urban Art Fair” in Paris, “District13 Art Fair” in Paris [which is coming soon in September 2018], “Beyond The Streets in Los Angeles” a huge showcase of graffiti and street art or the different festival of POW ! WOW ! in Hawaii, Long Beach, Washington and many other countries in the world.

This big change about Street Art in our time period evolved the attitudes and beliefs in this Art movement. Now, this kind of Art is perceived as cool and “in”, Artists don’t really need to hide anymore. Some of them became famous and can live on the income from their Art. Companies, city halls, associations and different kind of institutions call on these artists to beautify their buildings and facades. Artists are not perceived as “delinquent” like in the past when they could be arrested and go to jail for vandalism, but this fact depends as well on many aspects (location where the artists “graff” and if it can be legal or not).

Street Artists now are reconignized and some of them have their exhibits in Galleries because they deserve to be famous and well-known and live off their passion for their art. Their passion became their profession. However, if Street Art tends to be exhibited in galleries and only in galleries the movement will lose its meaning/value. If Artists forget the space that gave them their reputation, their birth as an Artist and they will expose/exhibit in Galleries, the fact that they wanted and desired to make Art accessible to the street, to people who don’t go on or are used to going in galleries will be lost and the debate on this accessibility and about money and business can be questioned.

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In other words, Artists should continue to do murals on the street and for free when they can/want and they have the right, as well if they wish to show and exhibit their Art in Galleries, Fairs, Festivals etc. Both can be combined for the well-being of each Artists.
E.F

Photography, a Breakthrough Technology In Art

Angele Dubos, France.

“Taking an image, freezing a moment, reveals how rich reality truly is.”

 

Photography is one of the most incredible breakthroughs in technology, in society and in art movements. As a mirror to the world, photography explores human emotions. It captures or marks a passage of time. Developed over the past 200 years, it enhances faster than any other visual art, plainly because it’s a blend between technology and art,  science and abstraction, reality and imagination, techniques and inspiration. Generally speaking, photography aims to capture the reality of everyday life, in parallel, it’s a fine art which requires time and attention.

This discipline, which has helped us to understand of our world, is widespread, omnipresent, everywhere: in our smartphones, advertising, social media, streets… Then how did photography become so renowned and appreciated by everyone?

Photography took shape when a Chinese photographer created the Camera Obscura, the first camera.  The main principle occurs when the image is projected through a screen which is a kind of mirror where the image is upside down.

Camera-obscura

Then, a lot of cameras, which I’m not going to list for the reason that it’ll be so long, have risen in popularity in our societies. Cameras have been examined through scientists’ hands and professionals in order to become more effective and obtain higher performance. Some well-known brands are Nikon and Canon.

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Regarding photography as an art, this discipline navigates around genres, artists, themes, works and techniques. Sometimes similar to the art of painting, photography has followed mostly the art movement: avant-garde, propaganda, contemporary art,  modernism, pointillism… On one hand, works are really carefully thought through by the artists focusing on lighting, the subject, the background, the meaning. On the other hand, some artist’s photographs are snapshots and have been captured in the right amazing moment.

However, some works are misleading, such as the The Kiss by the Hotel de Ville. Photographed by Robert Doisneau in Paris, this work is one of the most iconic of the 20th century. It reveals the love and romantic aspect that photography may have. Whereas, this photograph was actually all planned, all organized and everything you see was set up, even the extras behind, the cars, and included the blurred background.

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Photography also addresses fashion, photojournalism, war, advertising, death, nature, nudes, paparazzi and even more. That’s why I strongly suggest that you buy and read this book: The short story of Photography, which reviews in an enjoyable and pleasant way, the history of photography from the first movement until today.

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Japanese Have a Low Tolerance for Alcohol

Rikako Fujita , Japan

Generally speaking, Japanese are not strong for alcohol. We can drunk quickly. On the other hand, people from Europe and Latin is really strong. Sometimes, I see them drinking wine straight from bottle. If Japanese do same thing, we will die by acute alcohol intoxication.

What is Acute Alcohol Intoxication.

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As a result of examining the genetic information of Japanese people, it was found by RIKEN which is Japanese science organization. That “evolution” has occurred for thousands of years to increase the number of people with weak constitution to drink. Although detailed cause is unknown, weak constitution of alcohol seems to have worked advantageously for adapting to the environment for some reason. It announced to the English scientific journal Nature Communications of 24th.
Two types of metabolic enzymes, “ADH1B” and “ALDH2”, are involved in the alcoholysis in the body. Each enzyme has strong and weak types, with 75% of ADH 1 B and 25% of ALDH 2 being weak in Japanese. On the other hand, Westerners and others are known to have strong types for most two types.

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Analysis of the total genetic information of 2200 Japanese people revealed that there are many mutations that are rarely found beside genes that produce weak type enzymes. When genetic information is inherited to offspring, it indicates that the mutation accumulated without being lost together with this gene, and it is considered to be one of the evidence that having a weak type of enzyme worked advantageously. They also found that Japanese with weak type of enzymes increased over the past 100 generations.

This is why, Japanese have a low tolerance. When Japanese drink with friends who is from foreign countries, they must care about amount of alcohol. They DO NOT drink same like friends.

Bettina Clauss , France

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Do you have a pet ?
Yes my thoroughbred horse , two cats , and one fish

What is your favorite meal ?
Sushi

What your favorite hobbies ?
horse jumping

What type of music do you listen ?
Techno , house

Why did you choose Santa Barbara ?
because of the sun and it’s s small city.

By Antoine Marotte from Belgium

The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll

Anna Victoria Buhl Nielsen, Denmark.

Elvis Aaron Presley was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. When Elvis was born his parents, Vernon and Gladys Presley, were living in a very small house only separated by two rooms. When Gladys gave birth to Elvis, she also gave birth to his twin brother. Sadly, Jessie Presley was stillborn, and that left Elvis to grow up as an only child. In 1948 the Presley family moved to Memphis, Tennessee, and in 1953 Elvis graduated from Humes High School. 

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Elvis was influenced by the pop and country music back in the days, but also by the gospel he had grown up with in church. In 1946, Elvis’s parents bought him his first guitar, and from there on he started preforming at talent shows. The black rhythms and blues, and the all-night gospel were also two things that made a big impact on his career later on. In 1953, an 18 year old Elvis walked into Sun Studios, at that time owned by Sam Phillips. Four dollars was the price to record a two-sided record, on Side A, “My Happiness” and on side ,”That’s When Your Heartaches Begin.” Sam was not at the studio this particular day, but instead, Marion Keisker, the secretary, noticed something special about this young boy, not only his style, but also his voice and preforming skills. 

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A year went by, and in 1954 Elvis received a call from Scotty More, who was a local guitarist, and also from the bass player Bill Black. The group got together in Memphis for a rehearsal with Sam Philips, the owner of Sun Records, to give the group another shot. The band played and sang for hours without success, but when Elvis, in a break-time, started jamming away to a quicker version of the already existing “That’s All Right” song, Sam finally heard what he had been looking for. This became Elvis’s first single.

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In 1956 Elvis Presley signed his first contract with RCA records. At the new studio in Nashville, he started working on songs, such as “Heartbreak Hotel” and “I Got A Woman.” 1958 was the year where Elvis began his journey in the U.S. Army. He served nearly two years in Germany, and therefore, spending most of his time outside the States. 

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In 1967, friends and family gathered together in Las Vegas to celebrate the marriage between Elvis and Pricilla, who now could call themselves Mr. and Mrs. Presley. The couple met during Elvis’s time in Germany. The honeymoon for the new married couple was only a couple of days in Palm Springs, before returning home to Memphis again. One year after the wedding a beautiful little baby girl, named Lisa Marie Presley, was born.

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As the years went by a lot of things happened in the life of Elvis Presley. As a total, Elvis preformed 1,684 times in live shows and concerts. The first one in 1954, and all the way up to 1977. One of his biggest, and most known concerts was, and still is, ”Aloha From Hawaii.” The show was in 1973 with more than 1 billion views worldwide. ”Aloha From Hawaii” had more viewers than the first man on the moon had, and therefore, also made it one of the most expensive entertainment shows at the time, costing 2.5 million dollars. 

Elvis also made a career out of acting, and he ended up playing roles in 33 different movies.

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In 1977, Elvis began what would be his last tour… August 16, 1977, at 2 am in the morning The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll was found unconscious on his bathroom floor. They rushed him to the hospital, only to officially pronounce him dead. At the end, the once young, healthy, and beautiful young boy had become a 350 pound heavy man having problems with heart diseases, but also many other health problems. Still, there has been countless conspiracy theories about how Elvis Presley really died… and is he really gone?