On Friday morning, we attended a lecture on the history of migrations, highways and floods across the Danube. We were particularly interested in the idea of the “Danube as a metaphor”. In our academic tutorial, we discussed the notion that the river both transcends and formulates borders – what does this mean in terms of a “common culture”? Is nationality a man-made construct? Personally, I was particularly interested in the idea of different value systems and how language shapes our vision of humanity. Perhaps, “the global” is ultimately about a dialogue between such variable conceptions.
In the afternoon, part of the group made the final adjustments to our portrait poster. Our chosen image was an abstract, black-white and rather alternative depiction of V.Revd. Simeon Iliev – the priest at the Bulgarian Orthodox Church in South Kensington, London. We look forward to explaining our work in more detail at the exhibition next week! Other members of the group worked on individual projects – such as transcribing interviews held with Bulgarian students at UCL and researching the cultural role of music, sport, politics and the Romani population in the area. In the language session we explored iconic buildings, bridges and monuments that exist along the banks of the Danube. We enjoyed taking part in this quiz – it definitely improved our geographical knowledge!! We also learnt how to talk about our pets and siblings…and of course, we tried a little bit of Bulgarian folk dancing – Horo! It’s harder than you think! It’s now time to start making our documentary film… we are heading to a Bulgarian restaurant on Monday night to speak to Danubian migrants who live in London… and of course eat some delicious food!!
We have thoroughly enjoyed the first week of the Global Citizenship Programme! We look forward to part two!