Wednesday, December 15, 2004

inafa'maolek

When Europeans created modernity, a centerpiece to its development was the doing away with the primitive and premodern idea that everything is and should be interrelated. The natural world and the human world must be isolated from each other, and only through their vigorous separate investigations can we find true "modern" knowledge.

We can see the effects of this is an infinite number of ways in which our lives and our existences become dependent upon keeping certain parts of ourselves separate from other parts.

Powerful interests are also at work in these demarcations. The development of the atomic bomb and other powerfully nasty and dangerous weapons depended on people only thinking that these things were being created for "scientific" purposes only, therefore not needing to question their human consequences.

On Guam today we see ourselves connected to the rest of the world in very narrow and specific ways. The most obvious and dominating connection is ours to the United States. This is what dictates what we can see as being connected or relevant to us, and more importantly what isn't supposed to be.

So what is good for the military is good for Guam. What is good for the US is good for Guam. These are connections which are so supported by Guam's media and so many everyday conversations they don't require any proof or articulation whatsoever.

But the hypervisibility and limited ways in which we are a part of this world, keeps us from seeing other less patriotic ways. Therein lies the need to look beyond America, to step outside of and beyond it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I really appreciate your comments. I am trying to gather data and any other information I can related to the impact of colonialism on the islands of Micronesia. I am also studying the effects of the various educational systems on the people of Micronesia. I, personally, think the U.S. government should be sued for the havoc it has reeked on the educational systems of Micronesia as well as the general impact on Chamorro society and community life. I am sure some people would also place some of the responsibility on the shoulders of Chamorro leaders who continue to push for American curriculum and textbooks and the funding that has accompanied the use of said materials. I would love to read more about your feelings/thoughts related to this concept. Should the Chamorro people and other island members (ie: Chuukese, Palauan, Yapese, etc) living on Guam be using American textbooks focused on American history and other propaganda as well as the idea of using textbooks that are written for native English speakers? Or do you think that the young people on Guam and the CNMI should be developing their own text books or materials related to Marianas history, geography, folklore, and culture?

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