The Elizabethan style

The Elizabethan style prevailed during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I of England. Renaissance motifs were mixed with Flemish decorative work, such as strapwork, and late-Gothic mullioned and transom windows.

The Elizabethan style is more symmetrical than earlier architecture. Elizabethan mansions usually had numerous towers, gables, parapets, balustrades, and chimney stacks. Pavilions, gardens, fountains, and terraces were also popular. Elizabethan houses are highly ornamental in style and feature a number of distinctive qualities. The period favoured wood and stonework, with brick suffering in popularity due to the growing influence of the Renaissance. Elizabethan houses also borrow elements of Flemish and Late Gothic design visible in the curved gables, parapets and chimney stacks which adorn the exterior. Furthermore, the windows reflect the Elizabethan penchant for the decorative, with mullioned and transom windows proving popular alongside bay and oriel styles.

The inherent beauty of these designs was enhanced with the introduction of panes of glass in upper and middle class homes. These replaced wooden shutters, allowing light to infiltrate the home and create a sense of airiness and space.


The reluctant fundamentalist-book vs. film

In this essay I reflect upon how the film “The reluctant fundamentalist” is different from the book “the reluctant fundamentalist”, and the differences in the plot that I noticed.

After watching the movie, the first big change I notice, was that the start was totally different comparing to the book. The book started with Changes approaching the American in the restaurant located in Pakistan.  However, the movie started with introducing us to a crime scene, where an american professor(Professor Rainier) was kidnapped in Lahore.

In the opening scene we also see the first glimpse of an important character, both in the book and in the film, the American. Different from the book, in the movie the American is given an identity (Bob), and the movie also let us know that he actually work for CIA, which was only indicated in the book.

Further into the movie, Changes meets Erica. In the book Changes met her at a school trip, but in the movie Changes meets her first in a park nearby his workplace, and for the second time on a party through his boss. At the party Erica tells Changes about her former and first boyfriend, and how he died from cancer, which is similar with the book. Later in the movie, after Changes and Erica have become a couple, she tells him about how she feels guilty for driving drunk with her boyfriend in the car. The movie makes Erica seem more guilty, comparing to the book, where she was completely innocent.

Professionally, Erica worked as an author in the book, and Changes told us about how he felt left behind and was never included in her work. On the other hand, in the movie Erica worked as an artist, where Changes were often included, and even a part of her work. In the book we also hear about how depressed Erica becomes, especially after 9/11, at the end she suffered so much that she was institutionalized, but later, she managed to escape from there. The most logical solution is, that she took her own life, or it seemed like it, in the way the book described the situation. While in the movie, Erica clearly struggled with depression and sorrow, but she was neither put in an institution or was suicidal.

Sept. 11 comes, bringing in its wake a surge in American patriotism and a jittery hypersensitivity about dark-skinned faces. It`s described how Changes felt that people looked different upon him after the terrible attack, where to plains were crashed into the North and South towers of the World Trade Center. Since, the attack was done by a radical Islamist terrorist group named Al-Qaeda, Changes felt that people immediately associated him with terrorists, since he came from Pakistan. After a work-trip where  Changes was delayed on the airport, he was not able to travel with the rest of his co-workers. In the book he did not explain the situation further. Unlike in the movie where he was led away by guards on the airport, into a small room where he get stripped, even though he had not done anything wrong. Changes find this highly humiliating and gets offended by the guards assumption based on only his looks. I would say that the movie set more focus on how Changes was exposed to racism, comparing to the book.

As we know, Changes worked with assessing the profitability of small companies around the world, both in the book and in the movie. In the book, he got fired for inappropriate and rebellious behavior, when he choose to let his beard grow to support Pakistan when the country may be facing a war. Nevertheless, in the movie Changes chose to quit himself, when his work no longer lived up to his values. When he went back to Pakistan, he became a lecturer in a college, where he used his position to make Pakistani students  protest against U.S.A.

Changes became more and more aggressive towards U.S.A and their patriotism both in the book and in the movie. Moving closer to the end of the book, it became a bigger question if Changes actually had become a terrorist. Also, the book was unclear if Changes was allied with the rest of the people in the restaurant, where he met the American. This question was never clarified in the book. In contrast to the movie, where we quickly understood that Changes was allied with the rest of the Pakistani people in the restaurant, but he was not a terrorist and had a non-violence policy.

The book ended when the american felt threaten and was about to pull up what most lightly was a gun, it was an open ending, and we can just imagine what happen after.  Besides, in the movie, they added an entire scene. Since in the movie, the american (Bob), is sent by CIA to talk to Changes to find out if he is involved in the kidnapping of Professor Rainier. As the tension grows between Bob, Changes and Changes allies. Bob talked to Changes about how he wanted to save the professor, and CIA wanted to send helping forces. Changes then ask Bob if it`s really worth risking thousands of lives for saving one. He was able to convince Bob to do the right thing, until Bob receives a message  by the kidnappers which includes a photo of the professor killed. In that exact moment he also witness Changes texting someone, and immediately thought that Changes played a part in the murder. He then attacked and confronted Changes with a gun, and demanded Changes to give him his phone. He forced Changes to walk out among the protesters, who tried protecting Changes. This resulted in Bob accidentally shoots one of Changes students, and get rescued by CIA. In the car CIA sent to rescue Bob, he went through Changes phone, and then saw that the only text Changes had sent, was a text to his mum saying “I`ll be home soon, safe”. He understand that he made a huge mistake, when he saw that the text on his phone was delayed and the professor had been dead for many hours.

To conclude, I find the film more exiting than the book, since I find the book in some ways confusing. Personally, I think the movie reflects the message of the book more clearly, and also gives the many characters a more important part in the story, like for example the american. Trough the film, the personalities of the different characters shines more through than in the book. We also get introduced to more characters in the movie than in the book, and I find this change more exiting. The way the plot was changed, in the beginning and in the end of the movie, it makes the movie more exciting and strengthen, with both the message and the meaning of the movie.


My son`s a fanatic vs. Free for all

Both the stories reflects multicultural conflicts and cultural misunderstanding. In the story “My son`s a fanatic” the eldest son want to experience of the culture is family left when they immigrated to London. He then decided to convert to Islam. His father who does everything to adapt the culture of his new country,  and desperately tries to become as English as possible, since you have a lot more possibilities here comparing to Pakistan.  He then gets frustrated when he sees his son slides further and further away for London’s culture.

Likewise, in the other text “Free for all” it is the father who has a problem with adapting the culture in U.S. He holds on to his old values and traditions. This creates effects the relationship with his son who has grown up in U.S and adapted the american culture very well, and is therefore not familiar with the Pakistan culture.

Firstly, the  stories shows how different two culture can be, and how easily culture misunderstandings can occur with lack of knowledge of another culture. Secondly, it shows how hard it can be for immigrants to adapt or come to another country where the culture is so modernist comparing to their homeland.  Many people criticize immigrants for having too strict discipline, but they don`t consider that they don`t know any better. They have never been introduced to another way of thinking. I think these stories shows that in other cultures they may expect more of their kids, more respect and obedience then many parents in our culture would expect for us.


Gender equality

Today we live in a society where women and men are looked upon as equal genders with equal rights, but this is just because we live in Norway. A modern country which is known for being a leading country in the development of gender equality, young people of today, take this for granted. But we must remember, it haven`t always been like this!

For 203 years ago, in 1814, the Norwegian constitution was founded. In the constitution it said the people of Norway should rule over our own country, but still it took 99 more years before women finally got the right to vote in 1913. According to the constitution, women wasn’t even looked upon as people before 1913. The idea of women voting was presented to the government first in 1890, but was turned down with the conclusion that women’s nature did not belong in politics and would just be an obstacle. They also meant if women entered the politics it would harm the family. Feminists were struggling for 28 more years, to introduce the right to vote for women. The feminist movement lasted from 1885 until they succeeded in 1913.In their time, they made a significant prosses in reforming law and social customs in a nation, benefiting to the women of Norway.

In India 10 years ago, a 16-year-old girl was brutally attacked with acid for refusing a marriage proposal to a 32-year-old man. After spending 6 years behind a veil, she finally showed her marred face when the public exploded with outrage of a gang rape on a bus and joined the growing efforts to stop acid attacks and abuse against women. Last year, this 24-year-old woman, Laxmi, was awarded an International Women of Courage award in Washington, DC. In fact, she read a poem she composed at the award ceremony and part of it was directed at her attacker. It said “You haven’t thrown acid on my face, you threw it on my dreams… The time will be burdened for you. Then you will know that I am alive, free and thriving and living my dreams.”

The rules of equality go as following:

Article 2: Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty. Article 3: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person. And, most importantly, article 16: (1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to establish a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution. (2) Entering marriage shall be done only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses. (3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.

These are human rights. Not the rights of men, but of men and women together.

But what about in our society? We don’t live in India or Saudi Arabia, where two women recently spent 70 days in prison for defying the kingdom’s ban on women drivers. I, personally, have rarely been discriminated for being a woman. But I can’t say as much for others.

When society believes all girls` problems are solved with makeovers to possibly get a male attention, but boys` problems are solved when they accept themselves and get laid. When females are taught to control sexual urges until marriage but males are taught that their sexual urges are manly. When a short skirt is too revealing but a long skirt is too prude. When a strong woman is too butch but a woman casually wearing a dress is too girly. When a chubby girl doesn’t care enough but a skinny girl cares too much. This is unacceptable. Because men, women and all people should be treated with respect. Gender equality is currently so far beyond our reach, since our generation aren’t doing anything to change it.

How will we continue the work of women like Luxmi, Loujain al-Hathloul, Maysa al-Amoudi, from Saudi Arabia, and Susan B. Anthony, an active suffragette who fought for a right we now take for granted? When this generation doesn’t even pay attention to how bad sexism is around the world, how are we to change it?

Did you know that J.K. Rowling, the amazingly successful author of the Harry Potter series, was advised to use her initials instead of her full name so that her books might sell to a wider market; namely, to boys, who, presumably, would not have read something written by a female?

And girls liking pink isn’t a problem when they are asked ‘would you like the orange one, the blue one or the pink one?’ But it is a problem when they’re asked, ‘would you like the rose one, the salmon one or the fuchsia one?’

We can change this. Girls should have the right to refuse a marriage proposal, drive if they want to, choose blue over pink, and use their own name. But the people that force this upon us won’t live forever, and when they’re gone, it is up to us to replace them. Up to us to allow women to make their own choices, up to us to give children the option to choose their own toys, and up to us to make sure that women can have all the same courtesies men have. And vice versa.

It’s time that we, the next generation, take charge to change. It’s time that we decide how our future will pan out, how our children will grow up. As Hillary Rodham Clinton said, ‘It’s time that we move from good words to good works, from sound bites to sound solutions.’ And I know for a fact that there is no way I will stand here and watch my life go by as an underdog, as the inferior race. We are neither inferior nor superior. We are equal. Men, women and all people should be treated with respect.

Because now we have a chance to change the truth.

Change it to a better, gentler truth.

Change it to the truth all women’s rights activists have dreamed of.

Because we are the future.

We are the change.

International Day

International Day is an occasion where we sacrifice one day of ordinary school, to learn about new cultures, global issues, consequences of global warming and global warming itself, and political conflicts and problems in other countries. The goal of this project is to make students aware of the issues people around the world is facing, and how we could reverse or repair the damage that`s done. In a connection with International Day, we have Operation day`s work, OD-day. On OD-day students in schools all over the country donate 400kr from payment of one day of working for an important matter. This years slogan was “We are all children of the oil”.  Meaning that this year focus was to help and donate money to the children and people suffering from the pollution caused by oil industries. As well as getting an understanding for how damaging this industry is, for not only  people, and nature in the pollution areas caused by it, but for the entire world. Additionally, we should reflect upon the theme “We are all children of the oil” and what it means.

This year I was chosen to be a OD-contact, and since the students of the OD-comity work with global issues, we`re not only responsible for planning the OD-day, but the International Day as well. As a OD-contact we`re also responsible to look after the students on International Day, help them to find rooms to visit, inform them about different activities they can join, and prevent the hallways of getting too crowded. We tried to come up with ideas and activities which would make a huge impression on the students, and give them a greater understanding for many of the global issues. In addition, all the international English classes made posters for each theme and room used for this day.

Earlier, in a week or two before international day, each student of international English had to choose two rooms they would be responsible for on International Day. I chose the climate change and reflection room. I have a huge interest for global warming and climate change, and also have a little knowledge about it, therefore I thought this would be a good choice for me.  As for the reflection room, I found the idea of it really interesting, especially since I had not heard about it before. Also, it sounded like one of the coziest room to be in. The rooms I was responsible for, was already decorated and ready when we arrived. The only thing we did, was to fill up water in the water mug on the climate change room, and control music and recordings on the refection room.

My groups made a poster for the room about climate change and another one for the reflection room. We solved the task by writing a short description on what climate change is, and what causes global warming. Further we made a little list of bi-effects of global warming. Lastly, we threw in a punchline which would make people curious and eager to go in. We didn`t have enough time to draw anything, therefore our poster contains mainly text.  The reason we decided to make our poster like this, was because we thought introducing students to climate change, and write an introduction about the theme, would make them curious and make them want to know more. The second poster, for the reflection room, we kept pretty simple with just the title “reflection room”. We mirrored the word, to make it look like the reflection of the word was falling on the paper. We wanted to symbolize the meaning of reflection through this.  In order to make the posters more interesting we could have used more colors and drawings, but as I mentioned earlier, it was hard to find the time.

Perhaps, as assistant in the hallways and on different rooms, I could have done a better job with engaging people to walk into the rooms, and preventing the hallways of getting crowded. I was scared to approach or interfering with students, since I didn’t want to come off as annoying or rude. Many students are also older than me, and for this reason I also felt that they would not take me seriously.

The day itself I personally think turned out great. The human library was educational and fascinating to listen too, but some of the rooms had unnecessary complications caused by bad planning. On the room for Zimbabwe, students had to wait at least half an hour before the lecturing started, because the people leading the lecture were late because a series of problems with their travel to our school from the airport. Next time, maybe it could be organized such as the tutors can arrive in Ålesund the day before International Day, to prevent complications from happening again. The room for climate change had similar complications, and therefore had to be closed for the first 2 hours.

My overall impression of international day was good, and I found it very informative. On the rooms I had time to visit, I can’t find any other problems worth mention. I think it`s very creative how many activities the school came up with related to global issues, and how many different ways they have found to educate students about this issue.

The room that actually left the biggest impression on me, was the reflection room. In the room you`re supposed to sit in silence and dimmed lightning, and listening to a recording of a voice reading a text. In the text they talk about how we ignore the understanding of how big numbers are. They for example compared earth’s population to distances in space, which makes you understand how many we actually are on our little planet. This 15-minuetes long recording changed my way of thinking, and my understanding of numbers.

To conclude, I think International Day is a great and fun way to educate the students about new cultures and different global issues.

Nigeria Delta blues

Task 1

Through the blues, we learn about the pollution caused by oil. Wars that come and go. How the people suffer from starvation, no electricity, lack of water, education and medical help. They refer to their county at the tropical disease epic center, where malaria, typhoid and cholera is responsible for death and suffer in their nation. They have tried to reach out and beg for help multiple times, but their voices have been  ignored, and their strong and painful call for help haven`t got any reactions from the great leaders and groups of the world. The people of the nation is left with almost no human rights, and we that sit with the power which can change this, do nothing.

Before the flood

In the documentary “before the flood” published in 2016, we follow Leonardo DiCaprio on multiple trips all over the world, where he travels to explore and see the reality of how global warming effects the nature and everything living in it, what critical changes it would take to reverse global warming, and if it`s even possible, according to the newest science?

Leonardo DiCaprio has for many years tried to put focus on global warming and polluting. In 1998 Leonardo established his own foundation called “Leonardo DiCaprio foundation”. The foundation works to protect the last wild places and implementing solutions to build a more harmonious relationship between humanity and the natural world. Since that time DiCaprio has worked on some of the most pressing environmental and humanitarian issues of our day.

16th of September 2014, Leonardo was selected as UN Messenger of peace, and as a messenger for UN he had the possibility to expose how bad the conditions really are, travel, and see the effect of global warming up close. On his journey Leonardo visits:

  • China; pollution in the air and rivers/waters. The air in China are now so polluted that the inhabitants in towns must wear masks to be able to breath safely outside. A majority of the people in China suffers from asthma and cancer caused by the pollution. China have a million deaths each year because of pollution.
  • India; Firstly, 80% of the population in India do not have access to electricity. They use coal and dried cow droppings for fuel. Secondly, they suffer from extreme floods, which ruins their harvest. Lastly, big parts of the forest in India are burned down and destroyed, to make room to grow palm oil plants (soya oil). This happens every day, and because the forest is so old, they also release an enormous amount of Co2 and pollution that the tree-trunks have absorbed through centuries, and while they burn the wood, all the pollution gets thrown into the air and out in the atmosphere, like a giant pollution bomb. The results of one day of forest-burning in India, and the pollution it causes, sums up the pollution released from the entire USA for one-year. The fires also remove the last living-space on Earth where tigers, orangutans and rhinos still live in the wild. Now they are threatened to be extinct, and animal rescue-groups work hard to remove the survival animals out of the burning forests. Soon the only way to see and observe these animals will be in a Zoo.
  • Greenland; The ice on Greenland is turning black of pollution, which makes it absorb uv- beams from the sunlight instead of reflecting it. This leads to faster melt-down of the ice, and speeds up global warming. Animals who lives and haunts on the ice are now in danger of starving and drown. Many species in the ocean will also die or move away because changing of temperature and ecosystem. Furthermore, the sea-level will rise, and the cold artic water floods into the Gulf stream and will change its direction. This will affect the life in the ocean and life by the ocean. Temperature changing in the Gulf stream will also lead to climate change in Europe.
  • USA; The mining and oil industry have destroyed huge areas of the landscape which never can be repaired. Of agriculture land, 70% is used only for production of food for cows, 20-30% for chicken, and only 1% used for growing vegetables and fruit for humans. This number of cows leads to extreme pollution, with the thought of the enormous amount of methane gas released from the cows by burping and farting.
  • Miami beach, Florida; In Miami, they have started to raise the roads to try to prevent flooding. There’s also installed pumps to get rid of the seawater that floods the roads. If global warming won’t be stopped, the sea-level will continue to rise and several places around the world will be unlivable. That again will lead to a large number of people who must flee because of climate change and flooded lands. Naturally, it will lead to a lack of living space, resources, water and more, it could even lead to war.

What shocked me the most, was, to see how much forest that have been burned, only to be used for growing palm oil/soya oil palms. I had no idea that they had taken down so much forest, nor killed so many of the animals living there. Above all, I don’t understand how it`s possible to be this greedy; they don’t care if they destroy millions of lives, extinct several animal species, burn away the lungs of Earth and release years of pollution, for what? Money? What is money worth if you ruin your own home, our planet, and the possibility of a healthy and good life? In my opinion I don’t think people don’t believe in global warming, neither denies it. I think many people are just too selfish and greedy to give up their businesses, since it haven`t effected them yet.  It`s no coincidence that the biggest deniers of global warming are the ones that earns most from the pollution industries leading to global warming.

Another fact that shocked me was; as the ozone-shield gets thinner, the sun will overheat the ocean, because of overheated water the coral reefs dies. In addition, the coral reefs are like a giant food chamber, with its vide selections of sea animals and fishes, if the corals die, we will lose a great food resource. Nevertheless, they have also played a huge part in protecting the Earth form pollution. Corals that have earlier absorbed pollution in the ocean, now, because of overheating from climate change, and trawl fishing which destroys the seabed, all these things together make parts of the ocean like a giant cemetery. If we continue to dump plastic, pollute and fish the way we do, it will soon not be any fishing possibilities left. Over 50% of the coral reefs are now dead, and if we don’t take any responsibility, we will kill what`s left of them. We must think responsibility before pleasure.

There are countries that have started to take responsibility:

-Denmark now get all their energy from wind turbines, now self-sufficient.

-Germany actually produce even more energy than the country needs by using solar panels, now self-sufficient.

-Sweden is also a leading country. They invest in, and get a lot of their green energy from wind turbines and solar panels. As Denmark and Germany will Sweden also soon be self-sufficient.

-China invest big in green energy, producing solar panels, electric cars, wind turbines, and are now a leading country regarding green energy. 3, 464 000 are working today in China with renewable energy.

Personally, I don’t look bright on our future. I think people will come around and start to act, but we are way too slow. Our power lays in the wrong hands, of leaders unwilling to change their ways. These leaders speak louder with voices that often get heard by a majority of people, and by the time many of the lower voices break through, it`s simply too late. As people, we don`t understand, or simply don`t care about how serious the consequences of our actions are, because the ones that sits with the power don’t live in the circumstances that experience the consequences.  We talk about changing our ways slowly, and sets small goals for a period of 20 years. It seems we haven`t understood that we don’t have this much time. I think we only have 3-6 years left, where we must make drastic changes if we even want to have a chance in reversing global warming, and honestly, I don’t believe we will make it.  I`m already considering never having kids, because I don’t want my kids to be punished for our stupidity. If we don`t reverse global warming, just imagine what the world would look like in 30 years, 2047. Overcrowded, flooded, growing deserts, wars about lack of resources, constant fires in dry areas, polluted air and ocean. I don’t even want to live in this future myself, and I will certainly not let my kids live in it.

To conclude the documentary, discuss and expose todays biggest global issues around environment, the future of our planet and how we could still save it from global warming. When Leonardo was selected as UN Messenger of peace in 2014, he travelled multiple places to gain more knowledge about global warming and how it effects our planet. He travelled to Greenland, where the ice is melting horrendously fast.  India, where the enormous amount of forest is burnt down every day to clear areas to grow palm oil trees. China, where the air and water are so polluted that a majority of the people suffers from cancer and asthma caused by pollution. USA, where areas like Miami suffers from constant flooding caused by rising sea-level, and areas like California suffers by multiple fires caused by climate change and growing deserts. We still have a chance to reverse global warming. If we now manage to change our ways, stop polluting, invents in green energy – then the climate will slowly but surely stabilize itself again, the pole areas will again be covered in ice, and the extreme weather will stop. We must think responsibility before pleasure.