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Factory Girls

Posted by Marion de Groot on May 24, 2009
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An intriguing portrait of girls moving from the Chinese rural areas to the cities to work in factories. It gives an insider's view on life in these factories. The author, an American woman of Chinese descent, describes her encounters with these girls in a very personal way.

Cosmopolitans. How international students change global society

Posted by Marion de Groot on November 07, 2008
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Cosmopolitanism is hot. There is growing awareness that a cosmopolitan mindset is an essential component of globalization, and that a growing number of people can now claim to be ‘world citizens’.

As we emerge from the dark years which followed the terrorist attacks of September 2001, thinking in terms of ‘us’ and ‘them’ is once again being questioned. Should we really attach so much importance to a person’s culture or religion? Is it not preferable to regard everyone as an individual with a unique identity? Are we right to fear Islam? Isn’t it time to enjoy an open world once more, with its rich diversity of religions, literature, music, habits, ideas and cuisine? And what can we do to help those who are less fortunate than ourselves?

Forty years ago, in 1968, it was students who led the demonstrations against various injustices in the world. Today, it is once again students who do so, albeit without banners and protest marches. Today, they travel extensively, learn languages, study in an international setting and are down to earth. They avoid judging others too rashly, they are optimistic about the future, and prepared to provide practical help wherever necessary.

In Cosmopolitans international students from Rwanda, Germany, Lithuania, the Philippines and Indonesia describe their ideals and their life as a ‘world citizen’. They talk about their longings, their occasional loneliness and their empathy for those in less privileged circumstances.

They are interviewed by Ralf Bodelier. He sets their accounts against the latest insights of cosmopolitan thinkers such as Kwame Anthony Appiah, Ian Buruma, Ulrich Beck, Martha Nussbaum and Amartya Sen.

Cosmopolitans is far more than a book about students and cosmopolitanism. It heralds the dawn of a new era.

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Anthropological Linguistics

Posted by Marion de Groot on September 30, 2008
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This is the first comprehensive textbook in anthropological linguistics to be published for very many years. It provides a remarkably complete and authoritative review of research questions which span the disciplines of linguinitics and anthropology, yet presents a coherent, unified, biologically based view of this cross-disciplinary field. Anthropological linguistics is concerned with the place of language in its social and cultural context, with understanding the role of language in forging and sustaining cultural practices and social structures. While anthropological concept of culture, its subject matter ranges cry widely: from cognitive or psychologically oriented topics such as linguistic, relativity or universals of color terminology, to sociocultural issues such as language and gender, politeness, socialization, language contact, and linguistic engineering.All these topics and many more are addressed here, supported by examples and illustrations from an array of languages, especially those of Southeast Asia and the Pacific. Students will find in this book a careful evaluation of current issues and research questions, giving them a basic, yet well rounded understanding of their importance in a wider field; and they will find in each chapter suggestions for further readings, allowing them to pursue topics of particular interest to them.

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Riding the Waves of Culture

Posted by Frank van Schie on September 03, 2008
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This is a business book, but one that focusses on international management, and the cultural differences one would encounter. It describes seven main dimensions of cultural differences, offers many practical examples, and offers advice for how to deal with them.

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The Blue-Eyed Salaryman – From World Traveller to Lifer at Mitsubishi

Posted by Marion de Groot on August 23, 2008
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The author was a true world traveler, when he became curious what life as a salary man in Japan would be like. A funny book about life and work in Japan, which gives an insight in the Japanese culture and working spirit.