An opinion piece by Lene Rachel Andersen OK, so the EU did not order enough vaccines or were not willing to pay the full price, the Danish and the Austrian PMs travelled to Israel to strike a deal outside the EU, the British are getting “our” EU vaccines, the US does not want to share with the EU, and none of the Western and most resourceful countries have started donating vaccines to developing countries so that they can protect their medical and other essential staff. Yes, yes, yes, the world is not perfect. We are also not using the pandemic as an opportunity to think more explicitly about what kind of world we REALLY want to return to on the other side of the pandemic. But something remarkable has happened, never the less: There is a general understanding that the most vulnerable people, the people with pre-exisiting conditions, and the old and frail should get the vaccine first. Across the West, people are actually expecting that heads of state, the rich, the powerful, the doctors, and whoever knows somebody who knows somebody do NOT jump the vaccine lines. Comparing one’s country and civilization to the Third Reich is not exactly to set the bar very high, but think about it: Nowhere has anybody suggested that we save the young, the strong, and the able-bodied before the weak. That is amazing! Western politicians have even sacrifized GDP growth for the sake of health among the people who have the least productive years ahead of them. That is pretty darn good for a civilization where politicians haven’t really been able to focus on very much else than GDP growth and lower taxes for the past 30 years. So, kudos to humanity, though we still have far to go. The illustration is the Bildung Rose with its three different layers of What is possible here and now, What might be possible, and What ought to be. Politics is usually focused on production and technological fixes, i.e. the two domains at the top, but the COVID-19 pandemic has shown that we still care about ethics, which is the foundation of civilization. Politics suddenly moved from “What is possible here and now” to “What ought to be.” If we could strengthen that movement and the narrative telling that story, the world could become a rather amazing place once we get out of the lockdown.
European Bildung Day 2021 will be online and IRL across Europe on May 8th and online on May 9th. It is the third time that Nordic Bildung is the main organizer of the event, and you can see the program here: https://europeanbildung.net/ebd2021/ In order to sign up, you need to join the European Bildung Network, which you can do here: https://europeanbildung.net/membership-account/membership-levels/ If you would like to join the movement and host a local event as part of the European Bildung Day on Saturday May 8th in the time slot between 15:00 CET and 20:00 CET, please read how to here: https://europeanbildung.net/ebd2021-local-hosts-page/
An analysis by Lene Rachel Andersen After years of the United States dissolving into various political clans and tribes, it seems that President Biden is now trying to pull the country together and to make a coherent nation out of it. The New York Times has a wonderful analysis here: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/17/opinion/biden-stimulus-culture-war.html In our model Circles of Belonging, we operate with 10 circles, of which: the first circle is the individual herself, Circle 2 is the family we are born into, Circle 3: peer groups, Circle 4: the familiy we establish ourselves Circle 5: local communities (workplace, house of worship, local neighborhood etc.) Circles 2-5 are thus real communities where we actually meet everybody in the various groups, whereas Circles 6-10 are the socalled imagined communities: groups that are so big we cannot possible meet everybody, instead these groups are held together by narrative: Circle 6: Nation Circle 7: Culture zone (Europe, the West, Africa etc.) Circle 8: All of humanity here and now Circle 9: All life on the planet Circle 10: All life past, present and future It took civilization around 5-6.000 years of written history to create peaceful nation states and collaboration within culture zones–and it took the Trump administration 4 years to throw it away. In other words: it took written civillization 5-6.000 years to bring forth politically stable and peaceful groups in both Circle 6 and Circle 7, and now President Biden seems dedicated to glue them together again. This is amazingly good news for all of us. Because, as a species, we need functioning nations and culture zones, if we are to address the problems in the 8th Circle of Belonging: all of humanity, in the 9th Circle of Belonging: all life on the planet, and with regards to life in the future: the 10th Circle of Belonging. Creating economic releif for the American middle- and working-classes may not seem like a benefit to humanity, but an economically and culturally unstable USA is not going to help the human species as we are trying to secure our shared home and our future.
Well, first of all, he would have said it in German, and since I don’t write German well, what Schiller would have said exactly will not appear here. Second, I do not know, of course, what he would have said, but here is a qualified guess: NO! No-no-no-no-no-NOOOO!!!! (OK, I could have written that in German: Nein! Nein-nein-nein-nein-nein-NEEEEEEEEIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNN!!!!) Have these people no Bildung! Have they no knowledge about their political system and their liberties? Have they no emotional self-control? Are they in the throes of their passions and cannot stop and think??!!?? On the other hand: Schiller would have understood exactly why a disenfranchised former middle class would be ridden by anxiety and become angry enough to storm the institutions that have let them down.
Nordic Bildung is part of an Erasmus+ project about bildung. Adult education organizations from 9 European countries will be working with bildung and developing bildung programs 2021-2023. Lene Rachel Andersen of Nordic Bildung will be writing the theoretical foundation for the work. So far, we have handed in a 5-page intro to get the project started, and everybody is very excited about it. You can read it here: https://eaea.org/project/bildung/?pid=15007 In Denmark, the Danish Association for Education of Adults is our project partner, and the European Association for Education for Adults (EAEA) is the project leader.
You can now watch the European Bildung Network fireside chat from November 12, 2021: What kind of bildung do we need to handle exponential technologies? on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cl5fkz0Q5Ak Guests are: Pernille Tranberg (DK) DataEthics.eu, Anders Wijkman (SE) former MEP, and Azeem Azhar (UK) exponentialreview.co. You can also watch the video from October 29, 2021: What kind of bildung do we need to save the planet? on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjAwoBxzJk8 Guests are: Sandrine Dixson-Declève (co-president, the Club of Rome), Minna Salami (MsAfropolitan), and Klaas van Egmond (professor of geoscience). Lene Rachel Andersen from Nordic Bildung hosts both conversations.